Hello! I didn’t do a December favourites post, as it would just be centred around Christmas, and although I love Christmas- I thought it was a bit excessive. Also I didn’t want it to come across as me showing items like “look what I got for Christmas”. So here we are, hop, skipping and jumping straight to January. January has been an extremely long month (and we’ve still got a few days to go)! Waiting for pay day, felt like a lifetime away- the struggle was real! But we made it and it has been quite an enjoyable month, despite the lack of money and daylight hours. So here are my January Favourites and Highlights…
NEW LOOK Bronze Boots £15
I’ve been admiring metallic boots for a while, and on a rare trip into New Look to find some black pumps, I forgot the pumps and left with these (which was slightly annoying as I actually really needed black pumps). At a steal at £15 I knew that once I saw them, that I needed them! I didn’t even think about how to style them or anything, I just grabbed them and ran (to pay for them, not out the door). However, they are surprisingly easy to style with. I’ve worn mine with culottes, loose trousers (specifically some floral trousers which I will be talking about next), black jeans and they look great with a midi black dress as well.
ASOS Satin Floral Culotte Trousers £38
Yes I am aware that I am 5’5 and these are from the tall section, but as these are culottes, they come to just above my ankles (where I like my trousers to sit), so there was method to madness. I love these trousers! The satin feel to them is so appealing and comforting and I was surprised, that although floral dresses and skirts don’t suit me; floral trousers do. I love how easy they are to style and they look smart and sophisticated. They are perfect for the weekend; teamed with some boots or trainers. Or for a meeting at work- teamed with loafers and fishnets (my new obsession). They are perfect for putting the fun back into fashion.
ZARA Red Rucksack
I love ZARA bags, they are always so chic, have a beautiful cut and look more expensive than they actually are– which explains why I originally thought this particular bag was designer. Christmas shopping in Bicester Village (which is a home to big designers such as Gucci, Burberry- not my usual go to stores). But whilst there, I saw this girl in a real fur coat, armed with 5 bags from Michael Kors- upon her back was this bag and I fell in love with the bag. Immediately I knew it was going to be a bag I would never own and be out of my price range, but my partner saw the way I was longing after the bag and just went and asked the girl where it was from. He came back grinning saying it was from ZARA and I’ve never been so happy! God bless the high street! So by lunchtime, it was en route to my house (mini fist pump). I was convinced this bag was hundreds of pounds, yet it was only £20. Unfortunately this bag is now out of stock, but I’ve linked some from MANGO that are as equally as desirable (p.s they’re on sale) …
KATE SPADE Street Satchel £340
I feel this bag has been hogging the limelight recently (but its because I really love it). But since I wrote quite a lengthy piece about this bag on my What’s In My Handbag post, all I have to say is that- one red is my colour this year, two its gorgeous and three I’m extremely grateful for it.
Leafy & Lovely Summer Meadow Hand Lotion £6
I saw this recommended in a magazine quite some time ago, and aside from thinking the packaging was really cute, it was rated highly in terms of actually making your hands feel soft and protected for longer than a few seconds. The actual hand cream I have is no longer available at Superdrug (damnit everything is going out of stock!) However I have linked here a mini version from Superdrug at £5, but the one I have is available on Amazon (that little life saver).
Make Up Brushes from £20
I struggle with parting from make up brushes (don’t know if that’s weird or not), but I finally bit the bullet and got a brand new set, which came with make up brush cleaner, sharpener and foundation sponge- the dream! And now that I have this brand new set, I love these brushes! They are so soft and blend my make up perfectly! I got mine from a much loved website that I’ve spoken about before; Beauty Bay. They sell both full make up brush sets and individual pieces, with sets starting from £20. (p.s these brushes are vegan friendly).
Tommy Guns Smooth & Finish Creme £6.50
I’ve been using an oil based finishing serum on my hair, and it wasn’t giving me the desired look I was after. As I trust in Tommy Guns with my life (and hair) anyway, I thought I would try a finishing product from them– and result- I love it! Although it may be small, it is mighty, and a little goes a long way. I apply two-three pumps of this and run this through my hair and around my hairline to give my hair a finished look. It gives my hair that natural shine I am after, as well as keeping the fro calm and moisturised throughout the day.
The Epitome of Old
New Bed £79 (yes that’s correct)
I had been on the hunt for a new bed for quite some time, as mine really was not coping with me sitting on it without it straining and creaking; let alone any Netflix and chill moments! And let me tell you this, I searched far and wide for a bed! I went into actual bed city stores, was on Wayfair religiously and visited Ikea numerous times. But on the day in question, I went to Ikea with the intention of buying this wooden white bed I had seen at £175, yet I left with a £79 bed and saving myself £96- result! It wasn’t just the price I was drawn to, with me and mum pondering over whether this was the legit price for a double bed- but turns out it was. But what I also liked about the bed, which sold it to me, was that the pretend room it was in was similar to my own room layout, so I could picture it in my room. As well, it was much higher than the wooden bed I had gone to purchase that day. So I now have a non creaky and very comfy bed, and I can sit, lie, belly flop and Netflix and chill to my hearts content.
Pukka Tea Travel Tin
I got this given to me as a gift from my friend Jonah, as he knows I love all the tea! However I cannot find this online anywhere- apart from Ebay (another life saver). But I love this little tea set, its so cute and is perfect for when I am on my travels, its a lovely thoughtful and practical gift.
Netflix and Chill
Let me tell you this, the last time I was this obsessed with a TV show was with Breaking Bad, and that was 3 years ago! 3 years people! Narcos, had me at the get go- the cast was flawless, it was gripping, emotional and genius. Why I also loved it, is because its based on real events and its just crazy that something like this happened. I was really really impressed, and devastated when it ended. But they did hint at a second series, so its not all doom and gloom.
I started watching this, as I had saved it on ‘my list’ on Netflix, not really thinking this was going to be my cup of tea, but I was pleasantly surprised to say I really enjoyed this TV show! I didn’t really have any expectations for the show or really any knowledge what it was about, and although different to what I usually watch (crime programmes), it was gripping, engaging and jumpy- just how I like my shows. A great TV show and cheers Netflix for the recommendation.
Music and Lyrics
The XX ‘I See You’
Hooray The XX are back with a brand new album- finally! I love The XX with their quirky beats and soothing magical voices, and this album has been on repeat. My favourite song from the album has to be Dangerous, I like its upbeat tempo.
Ed Sheeran ‘Shape Of You’
I’ve never really been a big Ed Sheeran fan, however Shape Of You is actually a really good song! And is easily one of my favourite songs from this year so far. Yet another upbeat song with a good beat and vibe to it.
Women In This Town by Giuseppe Santamaria
I have mentioned this book in a few other blog posts, but there is a reason I am ranting and raving about it- because its brilliant! It’s a really great go to book for when you are feeling a little lost in terms of style and need some inspiration. I love how Giuseppe has explored different countries and photographed women with very different styles and body shapes, and it give you a real representation of women in cities.
New Years Eve
New Years can sometimes end up being the most expensive night out ever! But is it worth it? You queue for 20 minutes for a drink, just for it to get knocked out your hand. Your expensive outfit is now covered in someone else’s sick, someone has got punched, its sweaty, crowded and over priced everywhere you go. And what’s worse is that the majority of the time I loose my friends and have no idea if its a new year or not! Last year me and my friends decided we wanted out from this madness, and had a house party instead. We had food, we played drinking games and it was the drunkiest and messiest New Year I’ve ever had, but it was so much fun because I actually got to spend it with the people I want to spend it with anyway. Plus not to mention there was no beads of sweat forming when I went to check my bank balance the next day. So this year, we did it again- but with more food- and it was lovely, especially as we don’t all see each other as much as we would like to.
On the 17th February I will be scooting off to Amsterdam again (yay!) I wanted to go away for a few days before my birthday (which is the 25th February in case you were wondering). I did want to go to Edinburgh as I’ve never been there, but when I could go to Amsterdam for the same price, I picked Amsterdam instead. I’m so excited to go again, as I just love the place, and can’t wait to explore some new places.
Indian Chief Tattoo
I apologise that this isn’t a great picture and doesn’t do the tattoo justice, as I had it done yesterday, and its in the process of healing as we speak. But once it is healed I will post it on my Instagram- gemmal0uise. But I love this tattoo so much! I had been wanting an Indian Chief Pocahontas inspired tattoo for ages and the lovely Holly from House of Thieves created this beauty.
January always inspires us to bring about a change to our lives and although I have already set out my plan of action for things I need to do this year, I am also making some positive changes to my life.
I am going to be cooking more. I enjoy cooking a lot, so why not instead of buying food out for lunch and dinner- sometimes I’ve had breakfast, lunch and dinner out, why not make my own. Already its working out cheaper for my purse and waistline and my much loved recipe book from Paperchase is finally getting some attention.
Saving my money. Ideally this year I would like to pass my driving test, get a car and then hopefully move out and in order for me to do that, I need to stop splurging and start saving. I also want to save money for experiences instead of just blowing £100 on an ASOS splurge. Which brings me to my final change…
Curbing my ASOS addiction. Of course I can’t just not buy clothes, as there are things I need- but I am not buying clothes unless I need to or if its for a special occasion. So for my birthday I’ve got an outfit for a night out, but its that and that alone!
I’m looking forward to what this year will bring and sharing it with the best of people. I hope you’ve had a wonderful January and are having a lovely day.
Much love, Gemma