Sunday, 30 June 2013

This Month I'm Loving... Patterns!

Okay strange thing to love, and I don't even mean patterns as in prints. No, I mean dressmaking patterns!

Why I hear you ask?

Well those of you who know me will know that I LOVED Textiles as a subject at school and just because I've finished school doesn't mean that my love has disappeared. Oh no, it still as strong as ever, if not stronger! And now that I've got this lovely long summer ahead of me I want to finally start sewing again! 

So, first things first I had to get me some patterns! I went to this AMAZING sewing shop in Tooting called 
Wimbledon Sewing Machine Co Ltd that my Textiles Teacher recommended, and I may have gone a little overboard:

But I have promised myself that I WILL use all of them before I buy anymore.

And I've made a little logo that I'm going to sew into the garments, just because I want to add a little personal touch too.

I'm also planning on gifting some of them to my friends and family, so if any of you are reading this, you never know, you might just get a nice surprise soon!

Another reason for writing this post is because I'm starting a new feature here on this blog called "Dressmaking Diaries" which will just basically be an account of my latest sewing project. I'm still not too sure yet if I'll post regularly during each project or only once I have completed it but either way, keep your eyes peeled for that! Here's a little graphic I created for it:
Anyway, I'm off to start my new sewing project!

Wednesday, 26 June 2013

The Blue Rooms Photographic Studio

Yesterday I was invited to The Blue Rooms studio for a photo shoot to see if I was "model worthy". Truthfully I've never really thought about modeling before, so this was all new to me.

When I arrived (besides the fact that no one actually noticed until almost 10 minutes later) I was made to feel fairly welcome by lady who seemed to be in charge. Turns out she was getting her hair done, hence the reason no one came and greeted us. We chatted for a few minutes and then I was told to wait until the makeup artist was ready. She was a bit over-friendly and at one point just stood outside of the door and smoked.

After about 20 minutes, the makeup artist did my hair and makeup. She was sweet but to be honest I wasn't a big fan of some of the looks she created (I only really like the first look). Also, the other makeup artist offered to help do my hair to start with, and bloody hell, he pulled so much of my hair out! I then had to wait again until the photographer was sorted.

Eventually the photo shoot actually started, and the photographer was actually really helpful. He told me exactly what to do and where to look and stuff. Overall I had 5 outfit changes and 3 hair/makeup changes. The "changing room" was a tiny cupboard in the photo studio. And it wasn't much of a studio either, just a room with a roll out background screen and differently wallpapered walls. Also, we were told they would do some photos outdoors, they never did.

After it was all over we were told beforehand we would have a "consolation" at the end to discuss whether modeling is for me and decide what to do next (either purchase photos or go home). The did not happen. Instead, all that did happen was the lady who first spoke to us tried to sell one of the packages available, starting at £850 (10 photos, website and Z-card) and going on into thousands and thousands. We decided we did not want this so she started making offer after offer, trying to make us buy something. Eventually she offered us this: Every single photo taken on the day for the price of 4 fully edited ones. That was something me and my mum were happy with so we accepted, said our goodbyes and left.

'Never again' my mum said. I think I'm with her on that one.

Anyway, here are a couple of the photos that I didn't hate:

Bottom line is, I wouldn't go out of my way to recommend them but they aren't all that bad either. Also, my experience may be different to others.

Saturday, 22 June 2013

OPI SoftShades 2013 - Oz The Great And Powerful Collection

Here is O.P.I's annual SoftShades collection for 2013. It is inspired by the Disney movie, Oz The Great And Powerful and features 3 sheer neutrals, 3 glitters and 1 new Liquid Sand polish.

I've got the mini set which contains: Don't Burst My Bubble (milky creme), Glints of Glinda (milky creme), I Theodora You (milky creme) and What Wizardry is This? (new Liquid Sand).

All swatches are without topcoat.
Don't Burst My Bubble: An elegant pale pinky white polish. It's a very wearable colour that gives off a simple, elegant look. A nice clean look.
This is 4 coats, which is where I felt it was opaque enough, but I noticed 2 coats was good for just a sheer wash of colour. The first coat was a bit patchy but the second leveled it out. The formula was a tad thicker, but still easy to work with. Dry time was average, especially for that amount of coats and it dried to a high gloss finish.

Glints of Glinda: A soft neutral colour verging on tan/sandy toned. Again, like Don't Burst My Bubble, it is a very wearable colour and has a simple clean look about it.
I did 4 coats here but could probably have gotten away with just 3. Again, I noticed 2 coats was good for just a sheer wash of colour. Formula wise, it was pretty much the same as Don't Burst My Bubble. The first coat was a bit patchy but the second leveled it out. The formula was a tad thick, but still easy to work with. Dry time was average, especially for that amount of coats and it dried to a high gloss finish.

I Theodora You: A sweet baby pink polish that is elegant at the same time. Great if you want a subtle hint of pink but not full on candy coloured nails.
This one had the best formula of the 3 cremes, it was practically faultless. I did three thin coats but again, two would have been fine for a subtle wash of colour. The first coat was slightly patchy but hardly noticeable at all. Dried to a lovely high gloss finish.

What Wizardry is This?: A taupe brown shade with fine gold shimmer running through it. Features a dark olive base with flecks of gold bronze and brown. It reminds me of tarnished/antiqued gold, but truthfully I'm not too sure about the colour.
The formula was pretty good, not to thin and not too thick. At two coats I thought it was acceptable but I did three just to make it totally opaque. I'd say it requires at least 10 minutes drying time in between coats though because when I touched a nail after 5 minutes it smudged, so it definitely needs quite a long drying period. It dried to a VERY fine texture and actually a lot smoother than I was expecting. Also, it does take quite a while before it goes totally matte.
2 thickish coats of topcoat totally eliminates the texture and makes the gold shimmer really shine through. Removal was actually pretty easy, no severe scrubbing required!
Here's a quick shot of the polishes in this mini set:
Overall, I LOVE all three cremes in this collection! They are all totally wearable and just so beautiful! If I had to pick, my ultimate favourite would be Don't Burst My Bubble, because of the amazingly clean look it gives. 

Thursday, 20 June 2013

I'm Officially Back!!!!!!

Okay, so I didn't actually go anywhere, but I've been so busy with exams that I feel like I've neglected the blog a little bit :(

But not for any longer because my exams are overrrrrrrrr. I've also *officially* finished secondary school!!!
I'm going to miss these people sooooooooooooooooooo much!
I will be going back for certain days though because I'm helping out backstage with the school play. This year they're doing Hairspray and its sort of become a habit for me to help out every year with costumes or props or stage management haha! But it's something I enjoy doing - and rightly so, because thats what I'm going to be doing for the next two years of my life! I haven't mentioned it much to anyone yet, but I'm going to The BRIT School

But until then I've got the whole summer ahead of me and already its gone from having absolutely nothing planned to being almost fully booked! But I'm looking forward to it.

Anyway, this is what I had to say about the last five years:

So it’s officially over, our time at NMBEC has come to an end. Five years together, 3 Heads of Years, countless amounts of Form Tutors, hundreds and hundreds of lessons and 6 weeks of exams have all led to this moment. It’s gone by so quickly and I genuinely can’t believe it’s all over now. I’ve met so many amazing people that I will never forget, learnt so many things that have shaped me into who I am today, made so many memories that will stay with me for life and have grown up so much over the last five years.

Even though most of us have probably complained about NMBEC one time or another, I think we’re all in agreement that the last five years have been a rollercoaster ride filled with many highs and lows, and despite it all we’ve made it here to the end and now it’s time to say GOODBYE. I will miss you ALL and wish you the best of luck in whatever you are going on to do, so GOOD LUCK!

On a more personal note, I’d like to thank EVERYONE who has ever helped me, supported me, cared for me or even just been a friend to me. I really has meant a lot and I couldn’t be more thankful for all of it. The last few years have in no way been easy for me, and there have been some difficult moments, but without the support of all the staff and girls, I don’t think I would be where I am today. So THANK YOU so much!

 NMBEC 2008-2013 

Friday, 14 June 2013

Barry M Amethyst Glitter - Glitter Gradient

An old mani for you all today, but one I still love!

Back in September/October last year Barry m released a 'Jewel' collections, full of gorgeous glitter polishes. I didn't wait long before grabbing myself a couple and one of my favourites it Amethyst Glitter:
Instead of wearing it on its own, I tried it as a glitter gradient and I really do love it!
Amethyst Glitter is a beautiful mix of small and micro hex glitters in an array of jewel tones. There is a mix of turquoise, pink, gold, purple, black and red hex glitters and only turquoise micro glitter. It is so densely packed that one coat is almost opaque! 2-3 make it totally opaque and add lots of depth.
The formula was pretty good, slightly thick due to the amount of glitter but fast drying and smooth. It did dry to a slightly bumpy finish but a good thick layer of topcoat sorts that out nicely.
For this gradient I've layered it over Barry M Greenberry, a lovely turquoise one coater. The density of this polish made the whole process so much easier because there wasn't much base in ratio to the glitter so fading the glitter out was delightfully easy.

What do you think? Have you tried any of the Barry M Jewel collection?

Sunday, 9 June 2013

31 Days of Nail Art Challenge - Day 31 - Re-Create Your Favourite Challenge

Okay, so I'm not actually doing my favourite day, but one that I wanted to have another go at.

Truthfully there was about 6 days I wish I could have done again, but I picked Day 10 - Gradient Nails because at the time I wasn't confident about my gradient skills so did a glitter gradient instead. I liked what I created the first time found but felt like I wanted to do a "proper" gradient, so here it is:
I used two of the new Barry M Gelly Nail Paints in Key Lime (green) and Guava (blue). They made the whole process so much easier because the formula was brilliant! I then added a layer of sparse iridescent glitter and then mattified it.

Here's what it looked like before the glitter:
 I really really like these! And I feel like my gradient skills have improved vastly!
Look forward to seeing more gradients from me, I just love the look of them!

Thursday, 6 June 2013

31 Days of Nail Art Challenge - Day 30 - Inspired by a Tutorial


I actually really like them, because they help make rather difficult things really quite easy.

So for this weeks theme I decided to use a tutorial for a style I've never tried before... Braided Nails! I used this tutorial by fellow Brit Blog - Lucy's Stash.
And it was amazingly SO easy! Because all it is really is stripes! And you don't need any special tools or equipment, just some one coat polishes!

Seriously, if you've ever wanted to try these but thought they would be too difficult, go have a try and tell me how they went, I bet you'll be surprised!

Sunday, 2 June 2013

31 Days of Nail Art Challenge - Day 29 - Inspired by the Supernatural

The Supernatural.

To be honest I don't really believe in any supernatural thing like aliens, religion or ghosts.

But the one thing I do like is magic.

I don't believe there is any real magic out there such as miracles but I like the performance version of it. So I decided to base this weeks theme around that.
Okay so I don't know what to think of these. I just sort of on each nail put a 'magical' polish on (i.e, holographic, flakies, etc...) and on my pinkie I created a star shower sort of thing...

Well I do like the layers of flakies on my middle finger anyway:
I guess this is what magic looks like in my head, haha.
Hmm, either way my camera refused to pick up all the holographicness on my index and ring so they did look a bit better in real life.
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