Monday, 26 September 2011

Words to Live By #160

Image thanks to haojan

"It’s not having what you want; it’s wanting what you’ve got."
Sheryl Crow

No I haven't dropped off the face of the earth, just the face of the internet. - and it doesn't look like I'll have it at the flat until mid-October. Panic stations. But I hope this lovely quote goes some way towards making up for a quiet weekend. Love.

Thursday, 22 September 2011

Loafing Around: New Look Loafers


So the nice people at Most Wanted, the lifestyle magazine of VoucherCodes.co.uk, sent me some free shoes. Yes, free shoes. A phrase one doesn't often hear but is induced into giddy excitement when one does (similarly to the phrase 'upgraded to First Class', or 'three for one cocktails'.) I thought it only fair I did a little review, seeing as I imagine many of you have been eyeing (if not buying) the range of awesomely-autumnal loafers on the high street, and you might want a heads-up on how these New Look ones fair for the price.

Comfort

Now, the good thing about a loafer is that it is not a heel, and therefore you expect a style statement that also gives your feet the sweet relief of a flat for long work days or traipsing around the shops. I’m a  UK5 ½ and my loafers were a 6 and, unfortunately, I still found them pinching slightly around the toes – alright for a short walk but a bit of a no-no for anything more. This might be something that lessens once I’ve broken them in, but that might be a painful couple of wears in the process!

5/10

Quality

For a budget fashion shoe, the quality is not bad at all. The lining is a soft, suede-style and the sole is flexible (although not rubber, which I tend to prefer for non-slip). They look as though they will probably go quite a distance.

8/10


Style

Two-tone brown and black. Tasselled. Need I say more? Pair with a satchel, skinny rolled-up jeans, and an oversized jumper and you’ve got comfy-chic all wrapped up.

9/10

Price

For £14.99, plus a voucher code from VoucherCodes.co.uk the phrase ‘you can’t go wrong’ comes to mind! Just give them a quick road-test around the living room before you take them outside to check if they’re comfortable for your feet.

9/10

Overall I'd give the loafers 8/10 as I loved them but they lost out a little on the comfort score!

Will you be adorning your feet with some lovely loafers this season? Have you grabbed any that you would recommend for comfort/style/price etc.?

Tuesday, 20 September 2011

How to Have a September Restart


Do you remember a little while ago I asked you to consider if perhaps the universe was preparing you an upgrade? Well, sometimes it can be your choice to upgrade, or even to restart.

Stretching the computing analogy to its absolute limits – if your programmes are running a bit slow, there are a few updates that you should really deal with, and you’re worried there might even be a pesky virus waiting in the wings – maybe you could decide to restart.

And what better month for this than September? Even for those who aren’t heading ‘back to school’ it’s hard to avoid the feeling that comes at the end of summer, which somehow feels much more final than the New Year itself. For those of us in the Northern Hemisphere, anyway: the nights close in, the air gains that crisp electricity of autumn, and nature tells us it’s bye bye to our ‘summer lovin’ – had me a blast’ chapter, and on with a new phase.

Here are my top tips for a September restart:

Have an errand sweep...
Sit down and write a list of all the little things that you’ve been putting off over summer: those boots that need re-heeling, the coat that needs to go to the drycleaners, that little pile of hand-washing you keep ‘forgetting’ to tackle. Take a day to blitz through all of these; you’ll feel so much lighter knowing they are all taken care of.

Pack up your summer clothes...
Invest in some under bed storage or simple utilise your summer holiday suitcase to house all the clothes you won’t be wearing through the colder months.

Try a new health food...
As the weather gets cooler, our immune systems can often take a knock. Protect yours by eating lots of extra garlic (yummy!), vitamin-rich autumn vegetables, and maybe a new supplement or super food. I like 'Floradix' which is an all-natural, tasty, fruity tonic that is packed with vitamins and iron (great for vegetarians). Meander around your local whole foods shop and ask the owners advice on immune system boosters.

Write a few ‘Autumn Ambitions’...
Give yourself one or two big goals you’d like to complete in the months leading up to Christmas, maybe you could get ambitiously happy? Or complete a language course? Or widen your social circle? Or save a certain figure for a dream city break or new digital SLR? The choice is yours (but don’t overwhelm yourself, stick to just two or three, or perhaps even one thing).

Go underwear shopping...
We’ve all got a few pieces of underwear that really need to be retired, so take the seasons changing as your opportunity to feel great in your undergarments! Clear out the greying bras and fraying French knickers and treat yourself to one or two new things from your lingerie outlet of choice.

Have a new-season scrub down...
The way you’ve been (hopefully) using your body over the summer may well have taken its toll: sea water in your hair; extensive sandal wearing; tanned shoulders etc. Now you can take time to revitalise and refresh your body. Take a morning or evening to have a full-body exfoliate, deep condition your hair, use a pumice stone on the soles of your feet, take off the remnants of summery nail polish etc. and I guarantee you’ll feel like a new woman for the new season!

Polish up your perspective...
There are a few rare times in life where we are truly able to gain perspective on our lives. Whilst this insight often arrives spontaneously, there are ways that you can begin to look at things in a new, and perhaps more positive, way. Sit and have a cup of tea with an elderly neighbour or relative, ask them what their life was like when they were your age: what challenges did they face? And how do they feel about those challenges now? How could this impact your way of thinking right now? Alternatively, imagine your own future self and what you might want to tell the current version of you that could change your outlook.

That’s it from me, do you have any tips for how to feel awesome at the prospect of autumn? Have you noticed yourself unconsciously doing any of the above – or something else – to prepare for the new season?

Monday, 19 September 2011

Words to Live By #159


"Enthusiasm is the DNA of making 
things happen."
Danielle LaPorte

Unfortunately I'm still struggling with the internet, this time with it being impossibly slow, so uploading pictures is somewhat of a nightmare. Talk about up hill battle! Alas, I continue to do my best... 

Saturday, 17 September 2011

The Saturday Salute 17.09.11

 Source Unknown

Well I've hot-footed it back to the Welsh countryside to at last have internet access (there has been a delay with mine - argh!) Is it wrong how reliant I am on technology? Probably. But I like it that way. I'll be here for a few days Ambitious Happiness-ing and getting my business brain in gear. Oh, and drinking tea. Obv.


// ...and, on the flip-side: this isn't my little f**king pony. Hilar. And maybe with a hint of truth, in a more-than-slightly brutish way!

// Sandra is still one of only a handful of my daily ganders, her life is perfection in motion! Aspire, aspire.

// Copywriter, aspiring or established? You'll like Copylicious. Mmhmm. Yes you will. 

// You know you want to Go British.

Besos.

Thursday, 15 September 2011

Featured: Kaleidoscope.co.uk


Summer may have made a swift departure, but one thing that can keep you smiling in the absence of sunshine is the onset of party season! And to keep you dressed up to perfection, look no further than Kaleidoscope for all your party dress needs. I'm sure by now you all know my appreciation for a bit'o vintage flair, and there is certainly no shortage of vintage inspiration infusing the Kaleidoscope collection. Take a gander at these lacy lovelies:


Many of the dresses even come with next day delivery - so you don't have to wait to turn heads in your brand new LBD. Happy days! Go and take a look at the website now, Kaleidoscope.co.uk even do footwear and things for the home.

Are you already planning your party season? It's my birthday in November and I've definitely started eyeing appropriate frocks...

Monday, 12 September 2011

Words to Live By #158

Image thanks to jane

"The bend in the road is not the end of the road unless you refuse to take the turn."
Unknown

Sorry I missed giving you a Peek at the Week, but my internet woes will hopefully end tomorrow with a visit from a friendly BT person. Yippee!

P.S. I've postponed the eCourse start date until NEXT SATURDAY, and you can now sign up and pay here if you want to join in! Sooo excited.

Saturday, 10 September 2011

The Saturday Salute 10.09.11

Image thanks to tanakawho

Hello, hello guys and gals of the internet world! Have I got lots of juicy reading material for you this week? I certainly have.

// Nubby talks notice-me blogging.

// Declare yourself free with Positively Present.


// I love this cartoon on conquering your fear!

// This is so beautiful, you might cry a little bit; I want that hairstyle every day of the week! Praise to ulyana sergeenko.

That's all for this week, lovelies. Have a cocoa and enjoy!

Thursday, 8 September 2011

The Winners of Archive August!

Image thanks to d. sharon pruitt

Thanks to all who entered to win as part of Archive August. I realise I perhaps made it a little bit confusing, so didn't get quite as many entrants as I'd hoped - but I still get to give some stuff away and that makes me happy!

The winner of an absolutely FREE place on my eCourse which starts this Saturday (!) is:

// Kate of Full Hearted Life.

The winner of the Charade goodie bag is:

// Claire Commando.

The winners of the two annuals are:

// Morag Lee and Gillian McDonald

If you can all email me with your postal addresses (except for Kate - I'll be in touch with you) I will send out your prizes: megan@charadestyle.com

Big love and well done to the winners!

Monday, 5 September 2011

Words to Live By #157

Image thanks to i.anton

"Life is mostly froth and bubble,
Two things stand like stone,
Kindness in another's trouble,
Courage in your own."
Adam Lindsay Gordon

A Peek at the Week 04.09.11

I have eaten a lot of biscuits. I mean, more than usual, and usually I eat a lot. Jobless comfort-eating? *Nods*

New dress alert. Brown and coral? I say, why not?! Excuse the slightly odd expression.

A little outdoorsy-ness enjoying the final days of summer with vino in the park.

And endless shopping-listing, made more fun by doodles of invisible men. Note that my friend accidentally wrote 'cling foil' which made for an amusing moment.

How was your week?

Saturday, 3 September 2011

The Saturday Salute 03.09.11

Image thanks to jonathan

GOOD LORD IT'S SEPTEMBER ALREADY. Another week, and no more dollars. Dream job - where are you?! I've had some blasts from the past, as well as a big dose of letting the past go this week. And I've spent a hell of a lot of time in my local coffee shop leeching internet and buying delicious macaroni and cheese that I can't afford. Somebody stop me. Pictures tomorrow.

// How to Deflect Negativity is good reading.

// Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies. Just because I'm not vegan, doesn't mean I can't be in awe of the possibilities.

// This house makes me salivate.


Have a great weekend! Tonight I'm going dancing... Who needs a job?

Thursday, 1 September 2011

You tell me... What do you do when life gets in the way of your dreams?

Image thanks to emily

Beating the street in your best ‘hire me’ shoes, folder full of updated CV’s underarm, battling with a quickly waning confidence in your own ability (or even desire) to do another mundane retail job... sound familiar? Well, it’s pretty much my life at the moment. What’s more, when you stop fervently scanning shop windows for the elusive ‘Staff Wanted – Apply Within’ sign for just a moment, at this time of year, you’re very likely to notice a whole host of others in exactly the same boat, CV’s in tow. AKA: the competition.

Jobs are thin on the ground right now. The skills market seems more challenging than it’s ever been. And desperation is never a good look. But what if your biggest challenge is the fact that, actually, you don’t even want a job? You want to be doing your creative thing; your own hustle. I know that, more than anything, I want to be dedicating time to this blog and establishing myself as a fashion copywriter/freelance features writer. Uno problemo: I need to pay the rent.

I’m simultaneously working to get a bill-paying, regular bread-and-butter job, whilst working on my dream ‘jam’ job of being self-employed as a writer. And, right now, I’m doing a bad job of both, because neither is getting my full attention... I’m guessing there might just be many of you in the very same position.

So, how have you guys done it? What’s your personal experience with getting a job to get you by? How do you handle it when ‘the real world’ butts into your dream world? What words of wisdom can you pass on to me and others?

You tell me!