Tuesday, 30 April 2013

NashWhite Salon Party




NashWhite Hairdressing in Warwick is the brain child of my Brother in law Lee and his business partner Rob.  They decided they wanted more than working for a well known salon chain and in March 2010 NashWhite became a reality when they opened the doors of their first salon.  They quickly out grew their first salon and in December 2011 moved to a grade 2 listed building with four floors to play with.  This weekend saw the completion of the renovation work to the first floor and a they had a little party to celebrate.

They wanted to carry the industrial feel through the salon.  Off cuts of reclaimed wood was used to create their bespoke wooden wall on the ground floor of the salon so exposed brick work and copper piping were chosen for the first floor.  I think it looks fantastic and is certainly unlike any salon I've been to!



Some of the features of the building are just breathtaking, like this light fitting that runs through the centre of the stair case right from the top floor to the basement.



I love the unique wooden wall on the ground floor of the salon






 Not sure these basins were designed for this!


No party is complete without a goodie bag these days




2013 has turned out to be an amazing year for NashWhite already.  Not only has another level of the salon been completed meaning they can taken on more stylists but the boys have only gone and gotten through to the final of the L'Oreal Colour Trophy!  Proud is not the word.







The grand final takes place in London on June the 3rd, where the boys will be up against the other 41 finalists.  I've got everything crossed for them!

♥♥♥

Monday, 29 April 2013

Sporty Spice

This is one of those outfits I am just not sure about.  I took these photos a few weeks ago and haven't yet shared them which is usually a sign I don't really like how the outfit looks!  I wore this dress teamed with a black cropped jumper when I went to see my Mum recently and she asked me how comes I was wearing such a boring outfit... hmmm maybe she is right!  It doesn't fit that well and anything that is a bit over sized around my torso area makes me look bigger than I am.  I can see that it doesn't fit well under the arms either although I honestly don't make a habit of standing around with my hands on my hips other than in outfit photos I promise!

I guess I wanted in on the sports luxe trend, shame it doesn't work for me!  I defo feel like a more girly sporty spice with the baseball inspired dress and my wedged Ash trainers ;)


Dress: Topshop
Trainers: Ash @ Spartoo Shoes*

Might have to use it as my decorating dress when we move, I don't really have any old scruffy clothes for that kind of thing!  Whilst I am on the subject of the house move any tips from those of you who have moved recently?  Anything I need to remember to do?  Anyone created a handy check list I can steal??

♥♥♥

Sunday, 28 April 2013

Sunday Sweets #27 Black Bottom Cupcakes





I've been meaning to bake these ever since Hannah told me I was missing out as I hadn't tried them before.  She was right, they are divine!  The sponge is lovely and dark and not too sweet and sickly as chocolate can be.  The perfect chocolate sponge for someone who finds chocolate cake a bit too much.  The tang of the cheesecake should add a lovely contrast if there is enough of it, unfortunately this is where mine failed!  The batter was so thick it was really hard to get in to the cases and the cheesecake so runny the only thing it could do is form a thin covering on each cake.  Not how they are meant to turn out but they were still good! 

I will give these another go in the future as I don't like being beaten by a cupcake!  I need to make space in the cases so I can put the cheesecake mix all together on one side.  I chose not to ice mine as tbh I have had enough of cupcakes and I don't really like all that frosting, most of mine ends up scrapped on the wrapper and in the bin.  I didn't miss the frosting one bit and it meant I could concentrate on the best bit, the actual cake.  The recipe is taken from The Hummingbird Bakery Cookbook.  I always double all of their cupcake recipes so I end up with at least 12 good sized cupcakes.

Ingredients

Chocolate Sponge Base
380g plain flour
240g caster sugar
80g cocoa powder
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
80ml sunflower oil
3 tsp white wine vinegar
1 tsp vanilla extract

Cheesecake Filling
240g cream cheese (I use full fat Philly, don't bother with low fat versions!)
120g caster sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 pinch of salt
 200g chocolate chips

Method

Preheat the oven to 170c  /  fan 150c  /  Gas 3

line a 12 hole muffin tin

For the chocolate sponge base:  Put the flour, sugar, cocoa powder and bicarbonate of soda in a large bowl and mix with a handheld electric whisk on slow speed until all the dry ingredients are well incorporated

Put the oil, vinegar, vanilla extract and 250ml water in a jug and whisk to combine.  While the whisk is running in the flour bowl slowly add the contents of the jug increasing the speed of the blender as the mixture thickens.  Continue to beat until all the ingredients are incorporated.

Spoon the mixture into the paper cases until two-thirds full and set aside.

For the cheesecake filling: Beat together the cream cheese, sugar, egg, vanilla extract and salt until smooth and fluffy.

Stir in the chocolate chips by hand until evenly dispersed.

Scoop about a tablespoon of cheesecake filling on top of the cupcake mixture and bake for about 20 minutes or until the cupcakes are firm to the touch and they have an even golden colour on the cheesecake filling.








♥♥♥

Friday, 26 April 2013

Statement Bugs

I have the most amazing news to share with you guys today, not only has our internet been reconnected after I emailed a complaint to the CEO's office but yesterday we finally exchanged contracts on our new home and a completion date of the 10th May has been agreed.  I am over the bloody moon!!  Cannot wait to finally get into the house and start the decorating I have been planning since the beginning of February.  I had started to think this day would never arrive.  If I ever even hint at moving in the future please slap some sense into me.

This dress featured in a recent wishlist, I was won over by the colour but not too sure that the style would suit me.  Shapeless smock dresses usually make me look bigger than I am and even a bit preggers.  Not the look I go for!  I love them on others and am always envious of those who can pull them off and look amazing.  I ordered this dress in a size 6 so it is a relaxed fit but not too oversize for me.  I think it works pretty well, hope you guys agree!  It has shrunk a bit in the wash though so bare that in mind if you fancy snapping it up.



Dress: asos
Top: Topshop
Necklace: eBay
Watch: eBay
Court Shoes: Clarks @ Spartoo Shoes*

Think this is the first time I have blogged this eBay bargain necklace in an outfit post.  I love it!  It certainly is a statement necklace and so worth the £10 it cost.  Still can't get over asos charging £60 for the same necklace!  I blogged about my recent bargain eBay necklace purchases here if you wanna get in on the action!

♥♥♥

Wednesday, 24 April 2013

Wednesday Wants

The sun has got his hat on... well kinda.  More so than since about September anyways.  This is making me feel a bit more summery and lifting my spirits.  Although I don't like actual summer or the heat it's amazing how brighter days make you feel generally brighter.  Have been feeling pretty dreary recently and it's not good.

I have been keeping an eye on Ginger Fizz since the brand first hit asos.  I love the shapes of their dresses and quirky prints and this little beauty is no exception.  The neckline would look amazing on someone with killer shoulders and arms, I would team it with a little cardi and admire it's prettiness!


I clicked excitedly on the new Poppy Lux website as soon as the email hit my inbox!  For those of you who don't know Poppy Lux is the new brand from the people behind Sugarhill Boutique.  They describe Poppy Lux as being trend led at great prices and I have to agree, it's like Sugarhill Boutique's edgier sister.  I love this cute monochrome dress, especially the cut away collar detailing.  According to their website there is also a 20% off code in this weeks Look Magazine

Dress: Poppy Lux

Another dress making me want to add a few inches to my shoulders and get those arms toned is this beautiful minty green dress from Topshop.  It's perfect for summer weddings and I love how it's been styled with a flash of silver.

Dress: Topshop

I have ordered my first pair of Swedish Hasbeens and am already coverting more!  I have no idea what yellow would go with in my wardrobe but want them anyway.  So cute.

Sandals: Swedish Hasbeens @ Spartoo Shoes

I can't help thinking that this summer will be pretty much the same as last years, a washout :(  With this in mind I am after a cute pair of mini wellies for my little UK holiday and think these horsey ones are perfect!

What have you been lusting after this week?
♥♥♥

*this post is in collaboration with Equestrian Clearance*

Tuesday, 23 April 2013

Lifes Little Tests

I have never felt more stressed in my life than I do right now.  Our house sale/purchase has been absolutely crazy and coupled with little annoyances like our internet being cut off I just cannot see the end to all this stress.  The goal posts keep getting moved and we feel like we have reached breaking point with it all.  I knew it was going to be bad I just had no idea how bad...

As a result Gray and I have been huddled round my iPad (I knew I got the 3G version for a reason!) looking at cheap holidays to try and ease the pain and give us something to look forward to.  I need a week with the sun on my face and losing myself in a good book whilst sipping a tasty cocktail.  A week somewhere beautiful to forget all the stresses back home.  I've been dreaming of this since I wrote this post back in February, now I need to take some action!

After reading Rosie's post I too have been checking out the deals on Latedeals.co.uk and getting a bit of inspiration from their Pinterest boards.  I have followed the Latedeals.co.uk twitter account and liked their facebook page all in the hope of finding either an amazing deal and some inspiration.  We don't know where we want to go other than we want somewhere warm and it needs to be cheap so I am asking for your help, where have you been that was well priced but beautiful?  I don't want to end up somewhere that needs a good clean or with terrible food.  We usually go for city breaks which are not what we are looking for this time, our only requirements are that we go somewhere warm, cheap and relaxing.  We have found deals that look great from only £210 a person and have spent an age looking through reviews but are no further forward.  Help a girl out!

♥♥♥

*This post contains a sponsored link*



Monday, 22 April 2013

Polka Hearts

I caught sight of this Dorothy Perkins dress in one of their emails as I glanced at it half awake on a Sunday morning and it was love at first sight!  They also happened to have 20% off that weekend so I hot footed it to my local outfit and a purchase was made.  A pretty dress for under £15 is always a winner in my books.  I love the polka dot/heart pattern and teamed it with one of my eBay necklaces to add a splash of colour.  I am wearing crop tops under most of my dresses still, it's finally starting to warm up but still isn't that warm yet.  I have put away my winter coat now though so no more cold spells please! 



Top: Topshop
Necklace: eBay
Court Shoes: Clarks @ Spartoo Shoes*

You might have seen on twitter yesterday that our internet has been cut off by Sky :(  I cancelled our contract ready for moving but then extended the cancellation to the 15th May but they didn't do what they were meant to do and no seem unwilling to help unless we take out a new subscription and even then we would have to wait two weeks to be reconnected.  I have a 3G card in my iPad and have added blogsy so will do my best to blog as often as you are used to but can't guarantee that this will be possible.  I am currently stealing my sister's internet as it's just so much easier to use my laptop.  Fingers crossed when we finally move BT will be quick at installing our new connection.  Sky can do one if they think they will ever get our custom again.

♥♥♥

Sunday, 21 April 2013

Sunday Sweets #26 Raspberry & White Chocolate Cake





I wanted to bake something more cakey and less heavy going than my recent bakes so when I found these freeze dried raspberry pieces in Sainsbury's I decided that it also needed to be raspberry flavoured to give me an excuse to buy and use them.  I love raspberry and white chocolate cupcakes so decided to make a full on cake using fresh raspberries rather than just raspberry jam.  We ate it last week when some family came to visit and it was rather good.





Ingredients

200g butter
100g white chocolate
175g caster sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
4 eggs
200g self raising flour
200g raspberries

For the ganache

180ml double cream
200g white chocolate

Method

Heat the oven to 180c  /  Fan 160c  /  Gas 4

Grease and line two 8" tins

Melt the butter and chocolate together and allow to cool for 1-2 minutes

Beat in the sugar, vanilla and eggs

Fold in the flour and the raspberries

Split between the two tins and level the top

Bake for 20-25 minutes until golden and a skewer comes out clean

Leave to cool in the tin for 10 minutes before turning out onto a wire rack to cool

To make the ganache melt the chocolate and 80ml cream.  Once melted allow to cool and thicken before beating in the remaining cream.  Beat til it becomes light

Sandwich the sponges together with the ganache, top with the freeze dried raspberries and a sprinkle of icing sugar and enjoy!





♥♥♥
 

Friday, 19 April 2013

Happy 2nd Birthday Zatchels!

Eeeek!  I just had the most exciting email drop into my inbox and I couldn't wait to share it with you all. Zatchels turns 2 and to celebrate they are offering 50% off their beautiful bags tomorrow, Saturday 20th April!  How amazing is that?!  Their Birthday sale runs for 24 hours so be quick!


I have a few Zatchels bags, a couple of which can be seen here and here, and I love them.  I think I actually prefer the size and shape of the saddle bag and the metallic blue one I have is really beautiful so I am thinking I need to order myself another one of those bad boys!

What bag are you going to order?  I think I need this one and this one!

♥♥♥



Sunshine Yellow

I cannot tell you how tired I am today, I felt like it was already Friday on Wednesday this week - not a good feeling!  I have Monday off work though so am looking forward to catching up with a bit of relaxing.  I couldn't resist this bold animal print dress, as soon as I put it in my wishlist I had to make it mine!!  I love the way it works with black meaning I can wear it now even though it is a sun dress.  Not too sure how it will look against my skin tone anyway so might have to stick to layering it with black.  I am still rocking the cobolt blue, I think that's what drew me to this dress and it means I get an excuse to rock my new Barratts shoes.


Dress: Topshop
Top: asos
Necklace: eBay
Watch: eBay
Shoes: Barratts*





The colour is fab and the stud detailing is really eye catching.  I have been wearing heels quite a bit for work the last couple of weeks, it's kinda nice to mix it up instead of slobbing in my converse every day. 

Don't forget to enter my Sugarhill Boutique giveaway if you haven't already, there are only a few days left to enter.  You can enter here.

Also if you haven't already I would really appreciate it if you could vote for me in the Matalan Style Project.  I would love to win so I can use the voucher to buy a few towels for our new house, just call it a house warming pressie yeah?!

♥♥♥

Thursday, 18 April 2013

My Precious





Another bargain statement necklace to share with you guys today.  I picked up this beaut for £14.00 including P&P!  It took two weeks to arrive and has already graced my neck as I just had to try it on straight away.  It's lovely and chunky and will finish any outfit.   Have you found any bargain necklaces recently? Please share in the comments, I would love to snap up some more pretties!



We have finally had some positive house news and fingers crossed we might even get a completion date next week and exchange contracts, eeeep!  With this in mind I feel that I can relax a bit and save up the stress for the physical move.  Gray wants to get away for a weekend once it is all done and we are going on holiday at the end of May.  I need a swimming costume for the hot tub.  Figleaves have a 20% discount code right now (code - TWENTY) so I have been browsing their cute swimwear and fancy this little number:


I love the paneling and the colour blocking, most of my swimwear is brightly coloured and looks fab with a tan which I won't have.  It's also a shaping costume with lining in the front of the costume to help your tummy.  Do you find swimming costumes or bikinis more flattering?  I haven't worn a swimsuit in years, I usually go for bikinis as I like to get a tanned tummy but don't think it will be warm enough for sunbathing!

♥♥♥

Wednesday, 17 April 2013

Wednesday Wants

This weeks wishlist is short and sweet, I've been away with work and already feel like I've worked a full week!  So tired.  I love the fabric on this Topshop number, the colours are gorgeous.  I'm still loving cobolt blue and obviously am loving the fact that this floaty dress has sleeves.  The embroidery adds something a bit different and makes it seem summery.  You can't go wrong with a bit of monochrome, the detailing on this dress is subtle but beautiful.  I have been swooning over the heels for a few weeks now - they are just perfect.  I'm thinking that the platform balances out a lot of the heel and because of that I might be able to walk in them... what do you think?

Dress: Topshop

Dress: asos


Sandals: Emma Go @ Spartoo Shoes

Sorry for the lack of text, my brain just isn't functioning more than 'ooooh that's a pretty dress!'

♥♥♥

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Next Home - Promenade

I decided on the colour scheme for our new bedroom a while ago, we're going for soft pinks, blues and greys.  I want it to be girly but still retain some masculinity for Grey's sake so won't be going too over board on the pink ;)  Apart from the pink wall behind our bed that is!  The fabric I have chosen for our curtains is mostly grey and a lovely shade of blue and I have picked out several grey and white duvet covers for our new king size bed.  You can check out my pinterest board if you fancy it!

Next have not long released their new Promenade collection and I have managed to pick up several key pieces to help create the look I am going for.  I fell for the bobbin lamps as soon as I saw them, I mean how cute are they!  Luckily Grey appreciated their quirkiness too and we have a pair ready for our bedside tables.   I have purchased the below pieces ready to add the finishing touches to our bedroom, I also bought this cute trinket box but can't find it on their website.






I'm still looking for a main light shade, a full length mirror and if I can get away with it some fairy lights!  If you see anything you think will fit, please let me know :)  I really cannot wait to get in there and start decorating, hurry up solicitors.

♥♥♥

Monday, 15 April 2013

Cobolt Geo Time

So by the time this is published I will be several hours into my working week already.  Early starts on a Monday morning are not the one. Tired just thinking about it!  This asos beauty featured in a recent wishlist and is now just £20 in the asos sale.  I adore it, go buy it people!

I have been wearing one of my Britstitch satchels every day since I got them, hands down my favourite bags.  This skydiver blue version has to be one of my current favourite colours too.  I've never really been a blue kinda girl but cannot get enough of cobolt/electric blue right now.  I love the way the blues look with my hair and of course it means I get to accessorise with pops of orange too.  You'ld be surprised just how much stuff I can cram into the little bag, just the right size for me.



Dress: asos
Bag: Britstitch*
Watch: eBay
Court Shoes: Clarks @ Spartoo Shoes*

I have been wearing these Clark shoes quite a bit recently,  they have a padded insole making them feel more like slippers and add that much needed height to little me. 

♥♥♥

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