Sunday, 27 October 2013

DIY: Trick or Treat bags


I don't quite know how to start this post, as it's something I never imagined myself talking about, but I guess I should just admit it - I did some 'crafts'. Just saying the word makes me hate myself, as it conjures up images of a pushy mother who bakes lots and gets overly involved with her children's school activities... (way to stereotype and offend oh so many people in one single sentence, Lucy...)

In a pushy mother's defence, she probably has a reason to make such crafts, I, on the other hand, have created a cardboard 'Trick or Treat' bag, which I have no intention of using and is not aesthetically pleasing enough for me to want in my flat. I know, I know, what a great use of my time. But, what can I say, I spent a lot of time on Pinterest and watching YouTube tutorials of pointless things, OK?!

So, if you wish to waste enjoy an evening in with bits of card and some stationary, you could make your very own bag with the simple tutorial below:

What you'll need:
Scissors 
Double-sided sticky tape
Ruler
Pen/pencil
Hole punch
2/3 pieces of card in 2 different colours (you can also use wrapping paper around any old card)
2 pieces of ribbon (ideally 2 different colours - one about 1 inch thick, the other about 1cm - way to mix measuring systems)

How it's done:




1. With the first piece of card, measure out a square and cut it out (I think I made this about 6in x 6in).

2. Once you have a square, measure out a further square 1 inch in from the edges.

3. Fold each side at the 1in line and cut tabs into the four corners.



4. Using double-sided sticky tape, stick the tabs down to form the base of the bag.

5. With the second piece of card, measure the height you want the bag to be and cut it to size (landscape view, so that it goes further around the base).

6. Looking at the paper in landscape view, stick double-sided sticky tape across the bottom of the card.



7. Stick the card to the base (around 3/4 of the way up, so that the base is visible), and repeat with a second piece of card to cover, then stick the two pieces together. If you make a smaller bag or use a larger piece of card, you shouldn't need to do this (obviously...)

8. Take the thicker ribbon and place it just above the middle of the bag. Measure out enough so that it goes all the way round the bag.

9. Using two strips of double sided sticky tape, stick the ribbon down.



10. Measure out another square in the original card - this time about 2in x 2in.

11. Fold over the card and cut out the corners of the folded edge.

12. Put a hole in the middle of the folded piece of card (between the two cut out corners) - preferably with a hole punch, but if you 'mislay' yours in your tip of a flat, then just poke a pair of scissors through for a more 'rustic' approach...

13. Using double-sided sticky tape, stick the bottom of the card to the top of the bag, right in the middle. Repeat on the other side, making sure the two holes match up when the bag is squeezed together.



14. Using the thinner ribbon, thread it through the two holes.

15. Using the original coloured card, cut out two shapes of choice and write on your chosen sentiment. I chose 'Trick or Treat' seeing as it's Hallowe'en and all...

16. Stick the cut-out shape down over the ribbon going round the bag, and repeat on the other side.



17. Fill the bag with sweets and tie the ribbon at the top of the bag.

And there you have it, an in-no-way-useless 'Trick or Treat' bag. 

In all honesty, this was just a practice run, as I really wanted to make Christmas gift bags, but thought I had to restrain myself what with it being October and all, and this seemed like a happy medium. 

And I've just realised that made it sound ten times sadder... Ah well, I enjoy wrapping presents, there, I've said it.

Sunday, 29 September 2013

Pick of the best scented candles


Now I'm a proper grown up, I love candles. That is pretty much how you can tell if you're a grown up... In fact, when you do the 'grown up' test, the questions go:

1) Q: What's the best thing about being an adult? A: Being able to go out and buy a burger and chips whenever you want without asking permission.

2) Q: What's the worst thing about being an adult? A: Washing, cleaning, tidying, using your own money to pay for boring stuff...

3) Q: Do you like scented candles? A: Yes

So yeh, I'd say I'm doing a preeeeeeetty good job at being a grown up...

Here's a pick of my favourites:

Candles

I think my main love of candles stems from the fact that they hide a multitude of sins; I figure as long as the room smells like flowers, then it doesn't matter about the mountain of washing and lack of cleaning that has taken place. That's how it works, right?!

These ones all smell amazing, and they make my flat feel nice and cosy as it starts to get colder (boo), so I would say that that is positives all round. 

Sunday, 15 September 2013

Review: Liberty Free Beauty Gift


Have you been into Liberty recently? They are giving away the BEST free gifts I think I've ever seen. OK so when I say free, you have to cough up a pretty hefty sum (£150) in the beauty department to qualify for it, but I managed to justify it by buying four Christmas presents that I had been eyeing up a week before anyway, and I figured that I could either use the entire thing as a fifth gift, or even split it up and make a few different gifts. Anyway, that's what I told myself...

But anyway, onto the gift itself. Inside the signature Liberty-print wash bag are 22
samples of their handpicked beauty favourites, including amazing cult products such as Eve Lom cleanser, Nars illuminator, Laura Mercier primer and a Dyptique candle. It's just crazy how good this gift is - take a look:



As well as the great products involved, one of the best things about the gift is how big the samples are. Apart from a bit of a teeny Hourglass lipgloss and Trish McEvoy perfume sample, the rest are all big enough to get numerous uses out of, and some things are even full-size, such as the Liberty body wash and the ESPA fitness oil. They claim that the entire thing is worth £300 and I can totally see how - the wash bag alone is worth £35!

If you're a bit of a beauty junkie, then I assure you that you will love this. If not, it would make a great birthday/Christmas present for somebody as it in no way looks like a free gift, or you could even split it up and make your own little gift sets! I have something special planned for mine that will be appearing on my blog in a few months. It truly is the gift that keeps on giving!

Unfortunately, they have all sold out online (I swear they were on there for less than 24 hours!), but they are still available in store so make sure you get there quickly as they're only there while stocks last! 

Thursday, 12 September 2013

What to do in London this weekend: 13th September


It seems like, nowadays, the only thing I write on here are 'Things To Do This Weekend' lists, which is very much a sign of the times: I'm knackered all week and wanting to fill my free time up with plenty of fun things.

So, here's my pick for this weekend:

Luna Cinema - OK, so there is nothing new here; outdoor cinemas, I seem to mention them every week. However, anywhere that is showing the Rocky Horror Picture Show in London has to be added to this list. And in the incredibly pretty/incongruous surrounding of Kew Gardens? Amazing! Be sure to sign up for Rocky Horror on Friday or Ghostbusters (another fave) on Sunday (sadly, Dirty Dancing has sold out on Saturday), before the weather becomes too awful that even the thought of sitting outside makes your nips freeze.

Hoxley & Porter - Halfway up Upper Street is Angel's latest watering-hole. This glamorous bar and restaurant, styled as a 'Victorian drinking den', serves up exotic cocktails and traditional food in a truly decadent surrounding. As an Angel-ite myself, I am VERY excited to witness the colour-changing, absinthe-soaked scorpion that garnishes the 'Whatever Doesn't Kill You' cocktail and soak up atmosphere in this rhino-headed, palm-treed opulent decor. @hoxleyandporter

London Edition Hotel - Having just opened up on Berners Street, this new kid on the block is bringing plenty of old-school glamour to the London hotel scene. The ultimate union of modern and vintage, this is definitely a must for any tourists or Londoners looking for a staycation. If you don't fancy splashing the cash for a room, why not try out the beautiful Berners Tavern, or The Punch Room - the cocktail bar with no bar, but all drink served on a silver tray. It's like being on the Titanic. But you can be fairly sure that your night won't be brought to a brisk end due to a rogue iceberg... @EDITIONHotels (make sure to check out the most beautiful instagram photos...)

Street Feast London - This has been a personal favourite of mine this summer, and yes, I have spoken about it before, but this is the last weekend you get to check out this Dalston pop-up culinary extravaganza. Bajan fishcakes? Yakitori skewers? Popcorn prawn burgers? This is street food done VERY right! And, entry is totally free. Wins all round. @StreetFeastLDN



(Delicious hoisin duck crepes at Street Feast)

Saturday, 7 September 2013

What to do in London this weekend: 6th September



There is SO much going on this weekend, it's cray cray. My inbox is positively overflowing with exciting activities and openings so without further ado, here is my pick of the best:

Blackout Banquet at Butler's Wharf - Starting tonight and running for the next ten days, 140 diners each night are treated to a completely alfresco (although there is a wet-weather contingency plan if the weather remains as pants as it has been today!|) feast at one abnormally large banqueting table. The best bit? At 8.30pm, all electric lighting is turned off, and diners are left to enjoy their treacle-cured salmon with just candlelight and the flow of Tower Bridge to aid them in seeing such culinary delights. The price of this once-in-a-lifetime experience? £35. Buy a ticket. Now.

Grill Shack - OK, so there are a lot of great breakfast and burger joints in London, but what makes this all day grill really stands out is the innovative take on service. You can either order from their app on your phone or at a self-service station in the restaurant (which also lends itself nicely to sending sneaky drinks to other tables...). What's more, if you're watching your figure or a (nuisance) pescatarian like myself, there are plenty of veggie/healthy options to choose from, which is a welcome break from these places that offer one type of burger or nowt.

Mario signs stuff - First things first, I adore video games, and none more than those in the Mario franchise. I blame my family and friends - my grandma completed Mario Bros. on the Nintendo NES at least ten times, and that is a conservative estimate. At uni, we would play MarioKart on the Wii at least once a day. Therefore, you can understand my unbelievable excitement at the prospect of meeting the big guy himself! That's right, this weekend Mario will be in Oxford Street's John Lewis. Or rather, the voice of Mario, Charles Martinet, will be, and he will also be signing autographs amongst all the fun and merriment of "competitions and games". I swear to god, this is the most exciting thing that has every happened in London. Ever.

Pop-up Ping Pong & Retro Arcade Games - Continuing the theme of nerdy video game obsession, I am VERY excited by Pop Up Ping Pong's upcoming event, which brings together some of my favourite things in life: table tennis, beer pong, drinking and vintage video games. Pac man, ping pong and piña coladas (possibly) all for £7?? YES. PLEASE.

Pop-up Screens presents Dirty Dancing- I had the best time last week at Future Cinema's Dirty Dancing After Party; those guys seriously put on an amazing event. And, seeing as how you can never have enough Patrick Swayze (it is scientifically impossible) I would definitely be up for watching this again tomorrow. And who doesn't like an outdoor cinema screen with a bar and gourmet popcorn? Nobody. Except agoraphobics maybe... But yes, definitely on my hit list this weekend.


I carried a watermelon...

Disappearing Dining Club; Back in 5 Minutes - I think secret hideouts are my favourite things about London. Ok, so most aren't so secret (I'm looking at you Mayor of Scaredy-Cat Town), but it's nice to think that we're one of the chosen few who know about something unbelievably good. Step up Back in 5 Minutes, a restaurant and private dining room hidden behind a clothes shop on Brick Lane. This amazing little nook in one of the busiest areas of London on a Saturday night is quietly serving up incredible 4 course meals and Grey Goose cocktails to those in the know.

Redemption Bar - Having ticked off everything on my weekend to-do list, you'll probably have a pretty stonking hangover. Don't worry, I have an answer for that too; an alcohol-free bar! On Sunday, make sure to head to this a pop-up that's going against the grain. But seriously, all your favourite cock mocktails, amazing food, a 360 degree view of London and a clear head for work on Monday morning. What's not to like? 

Friday, 30 August 2013

Things to do this weekend: 30th August


It's almost the weekend (woooooo! I appreciate this so much more now that I have a job), and so here is a pick of things to do on these sacred 2 and a bit days:

Future Cinema presents Dirty Dancing - Future Cinema's Dirty Dancing inspired event, is the ultimate night out for any wannabe 'Baby'. Starting with the screening of the classic movie, complete with bars, activities and my fave B.O.B's lobster, you are transported to everyone's favourite holiday destination, Kellerman's, without ever having to leave Hackney Downs. If you didn't get tickets for this, you can always watch the movie at home, preferably with the drinking game, then grab your watermelon and head on over to Kellerman's staff quarters (aka, Oval Space in Bethnal Green) for the ultimate after party! 

Monikers - such a kitsch 'back to school' theme which even boasts an indoor school bus with plenty of walls that you are welcome to graffiti on - what's not to love? The place is more than just good theming though; what really wowed my friends over at gradfoodies, however, was the incredible food. I'm really excited to try it. Mainly because my favourite meals are those made up of small, shareable dishes, and this place specialises in just that. 

Do all your Christmas shopping - to anyone who knows me, it is no secret that I am OBSESSED with Christmas. Seriously, expect to see a LOT of it here in the next few months. And ok, maybe it's a bit too much to ask to complete all of your shopping by the end of August, but with the summer sales in full swing (feelunique have a particularly good one), now is the perfect time to pick up a lot of bits. Also, with Harrods and Selfridges already opening their Christmas shops, you really have no excuse not to be prepared...


Harrods: Christmas in July

Wednesday, 28 August 2013

Housewarming gift guide


I have been completely rubbish at writing on here for the past few weeks, but I do have some pretty good excuses. Firstly, and (arguably) most importantly, I finally got a job! I'm talking real life, in the office for 9am, creating reports and spreadsheets. Every. Day. Weeeeeird.

Other news is that literally every member of my family has moved house in the past month to one place or another. Therefore, I've been travelling up and down the country a lot to visit the new abodes, help (ish) people move, celebrate birthdays (including my own, ugh) and play with these amazing beings:


So yeh, very little blogging... But, I am going to ease myself back into this with one of my favourite things to do: a gift guide! And, seeing as how I've had to buy a fair few of these this month, I'm going to make one for housewarming gifts.


Housewarming gifts




Having quite recently moved into my own place, I think the best advice for housewarming gift-giving is to stick to useful things and no decorative items (that need to match a theme/take up a lot of space) unless you know the person REALLY well, and know exactly what they would like to display in there house. With that in mind, I have kept this list to either useful/overlooked items and inoffensive, universally popular house gifts:

Salt and pepper: Kitchen essentials like this (and things like olive oil/balsamic vinegar), are often forgotten items, and this is a really nice alternative to the standard grinders. I think this is also easier to use in cooking so you can just add a 'pinch' at a time.

Fragrance diffuser: Safer than a candle and a longer-lasting smell. Win-win.

Keyring: I've talked about this before, but a special keyring is a great gift to give to make the whole moving-in process a little more special. Even better if you can attach it to the keys beforehand...

Herb 'allotment': The only attempt I have ever made to grow my own herbs was when I bought a mint plant one time I tried to make mojitos. Not only did the drinks not turn out well, but the plant also died almost as soon as it crossed the threshold into my flat. However, if you're buying for anybody that is just a teeny bit more green-fingered, then this is a cute (and in no way unnecessary) gift.

Vase: When I first moved in, my friends very kindly brought flowers round. However, I did not have a vase in which to display them. Granted, I was pretty crafty and cut a large Evian bottle in half, but there's shabby chic and then there's just grim.

Champagne: Obviously, it does NOT have to be Cristal, which is ludicrously expensive. However, anybody who has ever watched MTV Cribs knows that it is completely essential to keep at least one bottle of this in your fridge at all times if you stand any chance of being taken seriously in your rap career...

Finally, as I have said, there are a lot of everyday things you forget about when moving; cleaning products, biscuits, condiments... Therefore, I think a very nice and thoughtful gift is to put a hamper together of such essential items, which may not be too glamorous, but greatly appreciated and can be spruced up with some fancy wrapping. Come on, who doesn't want a box of rubber gloves and Cillit Bang wrapped up in cellophane when they move into a new house?!


Thursday, 15 August 2013

Tartan yourself up


I have a slight aversion to tartan. It may have something to do with the fact that my school uniform contained this:

(image from eBay)

But anyway, it has been on the cover of Vogue and it was the focus of Chanel's A/W13 highland collection, so I guess I have to accept that it's a THING again. So, here are a few ways that I think that I can embrace the trend without feeling like an overgrown schoolgirl...

Everyday tartan


Wednesday, 7 August 2013

Save the Dates


This may seem like a slightly odd post, seeing as how I'm not in any way close to getting married/don't have any events on the horizon, but hey, what is life without whimsy; I blame my newly rekindled Pinterest addiction... But anyway, for no apparent reason, I thought I'd compile a list of 'Save the Date' alternatives from the boring old flyers through the post. Some of these do come in on the pricier side, so wouldn't be suitable for an event with thousands of guests/a tight budget, but most could also work as an actual invitation or even as favours/gifts during an event.

Everyday items:

One great way to send your 'Save The Date' (I've seen this shortened to STDs around the Internet - if ever there was something that should not be made into an acronym that would be it) is to print it onto an everyday item that people are going to see/use all the time so that they are constantly reminded of the most important day of your life. There are plenty of options for this:



Consumable:

The complete other end of the spectrum is to put the date on something consumable as almost everybody enjoys sweets and alcohol. The risk here is that, as these things are meant to be eaten/drunk, the date will not be 'saved' at all, so it is advisable to send a card along with these, or at least a caveat that the recipient should make a note of the date, rather than it being forgotten almost instantaneously.



Interactive:

These are great as they require the recipient to really study your 'Save The Date' and are all pretty fun too. All of these need the 'user' to stare at them for prolonged amounts of time, so hopefully the date should sink in pretty quickly, but you may want to send along a card with all the information too, in case these prove a little too challenging...





Cheap and Cheerful:

These are great alternatives to a simple flyer for anyone on a budget. If you're going for a theme, then this could be the time to get creative and give people a bit of a heads up... The keyring here is a bit pricy, but you could just bulk buy plastic keyrings and use your own design. Or you could take your own creative, in no way cringe-worthy, Pinterest-inspired photo and send that out to your guests.


Wednesday, 31 July 2013

Gift guide for mums


It is my mum's birthday this Friday (yay, another gift-giving stress) so I thought I'd put together another gift guide - again under £25, £50 and £100 - to give me a way of looking at all my 'research' and to possibly help others who are looking for a little inspiration. My mum is very much interested in beauty and fashion, so these choices do all tend to lean towards that kind of thing...

Under £25


Under £50





Under £100




As much as I am a fan of the birthday list (you get what you want and the present-giver can be happy in the knowledge that you're really going to love what you get - win-win), if you're up against the dreaded 'I don't know, surprise me' response, then I think the best gifts for mums are ones that they might not usually buy for themselves.

Whaddaya think? Would your mum be happy to unwrap one of these bad boys on her birthday?

Sunday, 28 July 2013

It doesn't matter if you're (wearing) black or white


As the weather is cooling down a little again, I'm excited for covering up. As much as I enjoy the sun, I'm much more of a winter-dresser than a summer one. Similarly, I like that it allows me to revert back to my monochrome (ish) ways. So, here are a few ways to wear my favourite colour combination as the weather cools off a little...


Team Miuccia monochrome

(Helmut Lang leggings, LPD New York T-shirt, Vans trainers, Tiffany ring, Vita Fede ringEddie Borgo bracelet, Topshop backpack)


It's not just me that gets really excited about getting to wear black and white without looking 'unseasonal' is it!?

Thursday, 25 July 2013

How to throw the perfect dinner party...NOT


On my 101 list, I challenged myself to throw a dinner party for reasons I'm not entirely be sure... I am pretty awful in the kitchen and have absolutely no confidence in my abilities (due to the fact they are so lacking) and live in constant fear that I am going to give my 'victims' food poisoning. Therefore, I like to seriously overcompensate with decorations and alcohol (I apologise for the differing lighting throughout, they were taken at various points throughout the day):






I picked up the table runner, place mats, napkins and candles from a cracking shop called Butlers that is quite similar to Crate&Barrel but on a much smaller scale; it is the type of place that sells things that you didn't know you needed until you saw them. It's also pretty affordable, the candles were only 99p for instance. I tried to keep costs low as much as possible so, as it was a very informal evening, I just used paper napkins and little plastic kid's bowls as side 'plates' for bread, as my little flat is definitely not well stocked enough with crockery. I realise that the table could be viewed as a little gaudy, but I think that it works well in this sweltering summer heat. I personally really like the colour clash and think the massive white hydrangeas break it up well. As for the bubbles, well, what is life without whimsy. 





I also set up a little 'bar' which later had olives, flowers and prosecco, but unfortunately, I didn't get a picture of that. I tried this funkin' bellini purée as I didn't want to be messing about trying to make my own, but I wasn't impressed really - it took a lot to get any real taste from them. And as for the cocktail shakers, I LOVED them when I got them as they're really bright and fun, but before even using them two of the 'heads' had broken off, which was very upsetting. I picked these up at Butlers, so just as a warning, they aren't the most fantastic quality.




As for food, it was definitely not haute cuisine. The menu consisted of scallops and butternut squash purée (that was it, I forgot to put the other ingredients in), salmon with ratatouille and couscous, Eton mess (which I forgot to get a picture of, but I served them in Kilner jars as I didn't have enough bowls) and my amazing cheese board - this is the bit I'm most proud of, mainly as I wasn't responsible for any of the food. I stuck with the classic rule of one hard, one soft, one blue and one goats with crackers, grapes and chutney and it was pretty darn good. Sadly, though, I had plied my guests with so much food and alcohol that they didn't want any more by the time this came out and so this is now sat in my fridge and stinkin' up the joint. Marvellous.

Monday, 22 July 2013

Mid-year resolution: be a better girl


The weather has been glorious recently, but rather than enjoy the amazingness, I have spent an excessive amount of time watching beauty videos and reading blogs, and they're really making me want to go out and buy every single skincare product and item of makeup mentioned. I have watched HOURS of Zoella and Sprinkle of Glitter videos. And I know what you're thinking: you don't have a job, Lucy, maybe you should focus on that first. Well, I'm sorry, I can't help it, and hey, maybe better skin will help to get me a job...?! (I like to try to rationalise every life decision in such ridiculous ways).

I have been massively neglecting my skin recently and I don't really know why. It's not as if I have a high-powered, stressful job getting in my way or a jam-packed social life that is taking up all my time... Anyway, we're sort of half way through the year and so this seems like a great time for a resolution: I will take better care of my skin and learn how to stick creams and colours on my face in order that they make make it marginally more appealing.

I am very much one of those people that finds a makeup regime and sticks to it: same primer, concealer, foundation, blusher, eye liner and mascara. I don't even wear something on my lips every day as it scares me. I may have mentioned this before, but I have a really bad fear that I am going to look like a drag queen (not that there is anything wrong with that, I - not so secretly - wish I was a drag queen) and so I am not very creative when it comes to colours and fancy makeupin'. BUT, I absolutely love beauty products and have drawers full of unused products and I figure, I'm 22, if ever there were a time for atrocious makeup disasters, it would be now - old enough to half understand how to use everything/enough sense to start again if I look like Marge Simpson post-makeup gun, but young enough that at least I can console myself that I don't look like mutton dressed as lamb.

So, to start things off, I have just purchased my first EVER red lipstick, thus making me a proper grown up. It was this bad boy (only £5.49, as I wanted to make sure that it was going to look RIDICULOUS) and so far, I'm liking it: Rimmel Lasting Finish by Kate Moss 01.




I reckon this is a slippery slope and, if I'm making a video similar to this within a year, please come round to my flat and cut my credit card into tiny pieces and disconnect my internet to prevent me from ever buying a beauty product again!


This has been a bit of a nonsense post really, but essentially, I'm going to be buying more makeup and talking about it. So, there's that to look forward to...

Sunday, 21 July 2013

Men's Gift Guide


I have 3 VERY difficult men that I have to buy gifts for at least twice a year: my dad and two brothers. I don't know if all men are like this but they don't want ANYTHING. My dad and eldest brother generally just don't 'use' very many things and my other brother just buys himself anything he likes (and has very expensive taste). With all three birthdays and Fathers' Day within two months of each other, mid June-mid August are particularly stressful shopping times.

So, whilst I'm searching frantically online, I thought I'd create a little guide so I can see everything side by side and maybe even help others who are suffering with the same pain! Here's a selection, depending on your budget...

   Under £25

Gifts for men under £25

1) Jack Daniels  - easy gift that will always go down well.
2) Ted Baker socks - fail-safe option; people need socks and these ones are a party in all the right places.
3) Topman t-shirt - who doesn't want a t-shirt with a French Bulldog on?
4) Book - sure to make any foodies happy.
5) Scratch-off map - a nice way to document where you've been/where you have left to go and it doubles up as a poster!
6) iPad case - this is the ultimate nerd alert! If you know what this is, you should be as embarrassed as I currently am. However, if you have a Back to the Future fan in your life, and you're looking for a fun, thrifty present, then this is an absolute winner.
7) BBQ - all men love to barbecue, and this one folds up to nothing so that they can show these skills off wherever they go. And it's only £24.99. Amazing.

Under £50
Men's gift guide under £50

1) Hand wash and lotion - my brother has just moved into a new flat, and so this is a boring, but useful present.
2) Hip flask - secret drinking, but keepin' it classy.
3) Ted baker swimming shorts - hopefully there is still enough summer left to get your money's worth out of these.
4) Vans - a little bit of a cheat at £52, but it'd be worth skipping that latte for just one day.
5) Chocolates - one of those gifts that is secretly a little bit for yourself too. But hey, if you're spending that much on chocolate, you deserve the treat.
6) Spicebomb - because nobody likes a smelly man.
7) Hamper - who doesn't like a Fortnum's hamper? This is a great selection of condiments, teas and chocolate all for £50.

Under £100
Men's Gift Guide under £100

1) Ralph Lauren polo shirt - the men of my family absolutely bum polo shirts, and this one is fairly safe.
2) iPhone case - a swanky Mulberry case for a swanky phone which would look very smart to take to meetings and generally show off.
3) Cheese gift set - I really love the idea of giving food gifts as you can be pretty sure they will be used and they can be treats that people wouldn't usually buy for themselves. This one is just so amazingly excessive that it's hard not to love. 
4) Card Holder - Zegna is a big winner with my siblings so this is a nice simple gift, that you can't really go wrong with (i.e. no wrong sizing!)
5) Up by Jawbone - I personally REALLY want one of these, although I'm not sure how useful they could actually be. But for men who like gadgets, this one is pretty cool. 
6) Oud and Bergamot cologne - a nice smell in nice packaging = perfect present.
7) Hugo Boss tie - again, a tie is a useful gift and you don't have to worry about sizing. This one is tasteful/muted enough to feel sure that it will be welcomed into their wardrobe.
8) Shaving accessories - I just love how old-school and everyday-indulgent this gift is.

Saturday, 20 July 2013

Vine & Bloglovin: make me laugh in six seconds please


I admit it, I can be pretty late to the party when it comes to social media, I mean, who starts a blog in 2013?! BUT, I have sought to resurrect that and, as soon as I sign myself up to something, I quickly become obsessed (I currently have 7 tabs open up on my computer, and each of them is some form of social media - now I just need some friends).

So, in celebration of reaching my first 1000 hits on my blog (woo!), I am happy to announce that I am now on Vine and Bloglovin', and here are my favourite Vines so far:


I LOVE Eric Stonestreet, so no apologies for putting him in twice - there are few characters as perfect as Cameron in Modern Family. I am, however, finding it difficult to create anything so good - there is so much pressure to do something impressive in those six seconds!

Anyway, lemme know if you're on either of these so I can give you a follow. Follow my blog with Bloglovin here, if you are so inclined, or get my Vine through my Twitter: @Lucy_J_Cross orrr, just send me over some recommendations of who to follow.

(Who remembers that Uncle Kracker classic by the way?! Absolute blast from the past)

Friday, 19 July 2013

What to eat/drink/do in London this weekend


I follow a ridiculous number of PR companies, pop-up aficionados and random bars and restaurants on Twitter, that my feed is usually awash with exciting sounding things to do in London. So much so that it can be overwhelming. So, here is my hit-list of things to try out in the capital this weekend:



Street Feast London - Having tried out the food trucks at London Truck Stop already, I'm excited to see what the Dalston Yard sister event has to offer. Opening tonight, and continuing every weekend throughout the summer, this array of street food will be available each Friday and Saturday until midnight. And it looks good! Ranging from the standard (yet delicious looking) fare of hotdogs and tacos, through to the more exotic options of gyoza and dosa wraps (and the infamous Anna-Mae's mac'n'cheese from Truck Stop!), there is something for everyone. What's more, with entertainment on offer for adults (DJs and cocktail masterclasses) and children (workshops) alike AND the amazing weather, Street Feast London feels like a fail-safe option this weekend. @StreetFeastLDN

Pop up Ping Pong - Having grown over the past few months into an incredibly popular event, the PUPP team are taking their fun filled night to the lofty heights of the 29th floor of Millbank Tower (home to Altitude 360). With catering from the 'pop up slider bar' #BRGR and a free cocktail included in the £7 ticket you'd be hard pressed to find something not to like about this night. Ping pong, burgers and booze, oh my! @PingPopPong

The Hangover Club - In this weather, any excuse to be outside is a good one as long as it contains food and drink and no physical activity, obvz. Enter The Hangover Club, a few minutes walk from Tower Bridge - offering up everything you could want after a big night out, whether you're one for hearty breakfast burritos, healthier egg white omelettes, or hair of the dog Bloody Marys. And the Shakshuka sounds AMAZING. Make sure to book a seat if you're keen! @grub_club

B.O.B's Lobster - having visited Burger and Lobster as a pescatarian who didn't think they liked lobster, I was reluctantly drawn to the lobster roll and was an IMMEDIATE convert. So, what better than a roving camper van (although for ease, it is setting up shop this weekend at Borough Market) serving lobster rolls, lobster mac'n'cheese and lobster bisque?? Nothing. Nothing is the answer. @BOBs_Lobster