Sunday, 26 October 2014

Review: Nourish, Sheffield

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I enjoy a pizza and the occasional burger as much as the next girl but eight times out of ten I try to eat healthily. I've done diets before and found them unsustainable, I even did Weight Watchers at one point after I found myself pilling on the pounds after a particularly stressful point in my life. I actually lost a stone doing their diet but found myself achieving a happy weight when I stopped going and just ate better (true story plus how can an avocado be more points than a Kit Kat?) Food is something that's very personal and what works for one person, doesn't work for the next but as boring as it may sound it's better to listen to your body, eat well and have everything in moderation. 

That said it's definitely time consuming to be healthy and sometimes I'm guilty of doing a 'quick tea' that had I spent longer preparing could have been something that bit better. Enter Nourish, a genius concept by Dave (a nutritionist), Ben (a personal trainer) and Richard (a chef) who have created a cafe come restaurant where the food is fast but healthy, and I mean healthy, not secretly laden with salt or sugar (I'm looking at you ready meals). Craig and I were kindly invited along a couple of Thursdays ago and I don't think I've ever been so impressed by a year old business. Not only is the food absolutely divine (holla at the avocado wraps and hot food pots) but the pure enthusiasm and life behind the brand is unstoppable. Dave is a real star and super keen to educate anyone who seeks healthy living advise from his wealth of experience as a sports nutritionist.

I'm incredibly proud to have a brand like Nourish in Sheffield (it's about time) and urge you to go and check them out if you're a local, they're bang across from the Peace Gardens and if that's too far they even offer delivery. They're also in the midst of opening a second store in Leeds, you lucky devils!

Have you ever visited Nourish? How do you feel about diets?

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Autumn Fashion Challenge with Junction 32


Khaki Parker: Mango c/o Junction 32
Red & Black Check Shirt: GAP c/o Junction 32
Leather Look Skinny Jeans: River Island
Kendra Fringed Shoes: Topshop
Tortoiseshell Sunglasses: Tom Ford
There's no doubt that Autumn is one of my favourite seasons (after Spring that is) so you can imagine my glee when Junction 32 got in touch and asked if I'd like to come down and style an Autumnal look. Junction 32 is somewhere I've never visited but will certainly be heading back to, with shops from Barbour to Daniel Footwear and even GAP there's something for all bargain hunters. The POA from team J32? For me and three other babin' bloggers to pull together a themed look, mine an outfit fit for an Autumnal walk, whilst keeping in budget. Three words I'm not familiar with. After a pow wow at Thorntons where many chocolates and a peppermint tea was consumed AKA shopping fuel we were eager to shop, especially with a £100 gift card burning a hole in our skinny jeans.

With just an hour to put our ensembles together it was a race against time. Shopping a whole look in an hour is definitely not my forte and while I didn't achieve a head to toe look I definitely kept on brief and within budget. When I think of an Autumnal walk I think of Sundays with Craig and Kez, Costa in hand, all while kicking a few leaves. With this in mind I knew I'd have to bag myself a coat, enter this spot on find from Mango. With a huge faux fur hood and lining, not forgetting it's practical waxed exterior this parker is a winner, and less than half the price of one I've seen in Zara. An awesome find at £79.99 non? My second and final pick was an oversized, could-have-been-borrowed-from-the-boyf check shirt from GAP at a beyond reasonable £23. £100 goes a long way at Junction 32 with my blogging companions putting together some seriously on point looks.

You might notice my last couple of snaps don't look like they've been taken in Castleford, they were in fact snapped in Norfolk where my Junction 32 look became the outfit I got engaged in! It's definitely not an ensemble I'll be forgetting in a hurry.

Have you ever shopped at Junction 32? What do you think of outlet shopping?

Fancy getting some festive inspo? Enter my Country Living Christmas Fair in Harrogate giveaway here.

Sunday, 19 October 2014

Giveaway: The Country Living Christmas Fair, Harrogate

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We've made it past the middle of October (where has this year gone?) so I reckon it's fair game to talk about one of the most exciting times of the year and no I'm not talking about Halloween or Bonfire Night (also one of my pals birthdays). I'm talking about Christmas guys, does anyone adore the festive season as much as me?

To get you well and truly in the mood for the most wonderful time of the year I've teamed up with the Country Living Christmas Fair in Harrogate to offer you the chance to win a pair of tickets to visit the dreamy Christmas extravaganza on either Thursday 27th, Friday 28th or Sunday 30th November. With opportunities to buy Christmas gifts, delve into the crafting rooms and the chance to get your guru on in the theatres of cooking and lifestyle there seems to be something on offer for everyone. I cannot wait. Hopefully see you there?

To be in with a chance of winning all you need to do is enter via the Rafflecopter widget below.

You've got to be in it to win it right?

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, 16 October 2014

One Very Special Announcement


If you don't follow me on Twitter or Instagram (why ever not?) you may not know my huge, oh my days news. Remember me saying Craig and I were off to Norfolk for a mini break? Well the mini break was exactly what we both needed and some - never in my wildest dreams did I expect to return from the east of England with an engagement ring on my finger, a ring which my fiancee (yes fiancee) actually picked out himself. To say it was unexpected, is an understatement but I think that made it even more special.

We're both incredibly happy and excited to start the mammoth task that is planning a wedding but for now we're enjoying the floods of congratulations from our loved ones and basking in chocolates, champagne and flowers! Well someone has got to do it.

Things might start getting a whole more lifestyle around these parts and I for one am excited.

Sunday, 12 October 2014

The Event: The Little Black Dress Launch


So I've got a confession to make, I don't own a little black dress. Honestly, even when I've been invited to black tie dinners I've found the one dress that's not black and given it a bash (plain black dresses just don't do it for me) so when a mail arrived for the launch of Little Black Dress' own collection I was intrigued. Held in the bar area of the prestigious Manchester House the vibe was just as glam as the surroundings with glasses of champagne and adorable but tasty canap├ęs on hand.

The Little Black Dress collection is inspired by iconic women think Coco Chanel and Princess Diana but designed with the modern fashionista in mind, let's just say these are no ordinary black dresses, each has their own quirky detail or unique finishing touch. On first glance I was in awe of a few dresses - the Audrey, a simple dress with a cheeky feather addition, the Kate, a dress inspired by the very one Mossy wore for that outing with Johnny Depp and the Charlize, a beautiful 1920s style flapper dress combining tassels and sequins. Needless to say my inner magpie was out to play.

Little Black Dress is a brand I've heard little about but after seeing their debut collection I must say I'm more than impressed - not only were team LBD a lovely bunch but both the quality and design of the dresses were second to none, especially at such an affordable price point (dresses range from £70 to £120). It's a testament to Little Black Dress that someone who typically avoids a black dress like the plague is now debating which one to add to her wardrobe. With the party season fast approaching Little Black Dress have got occasion ware in the bag.

What do you make of the LBD collection? Which dress do you crave?

Thursday, 9 October 2014

Review: The Library Of Fragrance Peony




It seems like almost every week there's a new fragrance in town but when I heard about the launch of a new brand l took note (get it?) The Library Of Fragrance officially launched in the UK this September but don't be fooled into thinking these guys are newbs to the fragrance world. The family company (always a winner with me) hails from America, where the scents are produced and they have a serious cult following. 

Library Of Fragrance believe our noses are overwhelmed by the abundance of notes found in perfumes today so they're keeping it simple with single scents evocative of everyday memories - think Grass and Thunderstorm (yes really). When Peony* landed on my doorstep I was thrilled, let's just say the idea of smelling like my favourite flower appealed. On first sniff I'm reminded of parma violets but spritzed on my skin and it's something entirely different, while the scent remains sweet it's incredibly warming and dare I say, a little bit sensual. What I adore about the Peony fragrance (packaging aside, isn't she an apothecary beaut?) is there's no artificial-headache-inducing whiff that you sometimes find in scents, Peony just feels incredibly clean and frankly smells delicious.

With a staggering 101 scents available online and a selection of 28 favourites found in Boots you'd be crazy not to give a LOF scents a sniff, especially at the incredible price point of £15 each or two scents for £25 at Boots. Has there ever been a better time to find your signature scent? 

Now the only question worth asking is, which scent should I try next?


*Peony was kindly sent to me for review, all thoughts and opinions my own.

Tuesday, 7 October 2014

The Story Of September

Someone's excited for the cinema - The best kind of minis - No words, I just need - The best holiday with my fave boy - Things are looking cosy at The Cottage - The beautiful birthday girl - Dreamy snackettes at casa Joasia - Fancy schmanzy drinks with the girls - Beautiful scenery on the drive home from Manchester

September 2014 will be fondly known as the month of Italy with me boldly making two trips to the land of my partial heritage, my mums a quarter Italian don't you know. One trip was for work and the other for play although I must admit the work trip was pretty fun, that could possibly be down to the amount of Italian produce I got to consume though. You may also notice there's nowhere near as many Instagram snaps on this months Story Of and I blame/thank Sardinia where we stayed for eleven days of no wifi bliss, who'd of thought I'd be happy without wifi? When I wasn't in Italy I was here, there and sort of everywhere with trips to Coventry for a friends wedding, Nottingham for a spot of birthday present buyin' and Manchester for a girly get together, not forgetting birthday celebrations galore - my nan, sister in law and favourite baby momma all became a year more fabulous. September you were packed to the brim with goodness, please be as awesome next year?

Obsessed With - Can I say Sardinia? It may feel like a lifetime ago but it doesn't mean I haven't thought about it every few days - the pizza, the fresh sea air, the gelato, the prosecco, the sun and the company all mounted to a pretty excellent holiday. Not forgetting my holiday soundtrack, Ed Sheerans X album - totally late to the party as per but my that boy can sing. I'm in awe.

In non travel news I've been pretty smitten with Essie duos and have adopted a Pokemon, gotta catch 'em all approach. I'm yet to find another nail polish brand with such an outstanding colour selection and a more perfect brush, all at a non offensive price point. This month I've picked up Fifth Avenue, Mint Candy Apple, Mademoiselle, Bahama Mama and Chinchilly. Can you tell I'm a little into them?

Lusting After - A few considered pieces to complete my Autumn wardrobe. First off is the elusive, doesn't make me resemble a 90s rapper faux fur jacket. Every Autumn Winter faux furs come to play but this year they seem to have exploded all over the high street. I need. Resembling an animal aside the other items on my fashion wish list are knitwear and faux leather skinny trousers. Knitwear is the ultimate cold weather staple and while I do enjoy a bargain I think knitwear is something you should throw a little more mula at, I mean who wants knitwear that only lasts one wash? I'm looking at you Topshop. Finally the tricky, must fit perfectly faux leather skinnys - last year it was River Island knocking it out of the park but this year they've changed them and I just don't adore the new style anywhere near as much. The search continues...

Excited For - This weekend. The boyf and I are off on a rather late but very welcome mini break to Norfolk. It's a place I've never visited and we're staying on an actual working farm which has accommodation in a converted dairy barn, sounds dreamy right? I'm hoping for walks on the beach (even if it's chilly), local fodder and possibly a trip to the hometown of many a YouTube star, Norwich. Recommendations for this neck of the woods are wholly welcome.

Did you love September as much as me? Any ideas where I can find the perfect faux fur, leather skinnys or snuggly knits?

You can follow my snappin' by searching 'Cagney and Lace' on Instagram or by clicking here.

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