valentines

Lazy Sunday | Things I’m Loving At the Moment

It’s Valentine’s Day weekend and as such I have decided to write a Things I’m Loving post. Here’s a list of the little things I am obsessing over at the moment….

ACCESSORIES | Olivia Burton Winter Garden Leather Watch

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I have been absolutely head over heels in love with Olivia Burton watches ever since I wrote my Top High Street Watches post, back in god knows when. Her designs are simple and delicate, and I always planned one day to invest in a really beautiful watch. I’ve had some really horrible news this week, which I’ve really been struggling with, and my mum and my boyfriend have been really amazing supports on the phone in reassuring me that things are actually ‘going to be ok’. Anyway, I came home on Friday to a parcel from John Lewis and my wonderful mum had sent me this lovely surprise with the note “Just a little something to cheer you up, Love Mum”. I nearly started crying right there, because it was so sweet and thoughtful and the watch itself is so chic and elegant. I am absolutely in love, I can’t stop looking at it. I would definitely recommend having a look at her collection on John Lewis or ASOS, as she does a really great range of watches, some at pretty reasonable prices.

EATS | Hot-Cross Buns

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It’s that time of year again where there are hot cross buns all over the supermarkets, and although I have never liked them before, I am becoming a bit obsessed. Get me a hot cross bun, a cup of tea and a book at the weekend and I will be happy. They’re so yummy and so cheap to buy! I’m very excited to do a little Waitrose shop soon and see if I can pick up a few different flavours – cinnamon and raisin here I come!

FACE:  No7 Makeup Goodies

IMG_0127I’ve had a pretty hectic couple of weeks, with lots of Uni work to do, and as a result my makeup situation has gotten pretty dire. I ran out of foundation completely on the day I planned to go into town to restock my makeup bag, and ended up covering my face in the last smidgen of concealer I could find – not a good look. It was rather embarrassing, when the lady at the makeup counter asked me what base I had used that morning: “Ermm…”.  On the search for both foundation and concealer, I was hoping there might be a good deal in Boots. It was the Buy One Get One Half Price deal at No7, which caught my attention, and of course the added luxury of finding a lady to help me find my perfect shade without too much effort, was too good to pass up.  I ended up walking away with the Beautifully Matte Foundation and the Instant Radiance Under Eye Concealer, both of which match together beautifully. And it only came to £20, a little bit more than I might usually spend, but so far I’m really happy with both products so that’s good news, and of course having proper makeup doing its actual job is always nice.

HAIR: Schwarzkopf Essence Ultime Crystal Shine Shampoo and Conditioner

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On this journey to get myself back to some kind of normality (just trying to make myself feel more like myself really) I have also had my hair done – as the roots of my blonde highlighted hair where almost covering the whole top of my head, making it look more like I’d just dip-dyed the ends blonde, as opposed not having enough time/money to sort my barnet out. I did, however, read a comforting snippet in Fabulous Magazine, which was talking about how roots are in, so that was nice for a week or so. But I am happily blonde again, the split ends have been trimmed away and my mother (again the wonder that she is) has found me the best shampoo and conditioner set. I’ve actually had this set since Christmas, but I sadly forgot to take it back with me to Uni and as a result we have only just been reunited. It’s the Schwarzkopf Essence Ultime Crystal Shine Shampoo and Conditioner developed with Claudia Schiffer and it is absolutely divine. The scent is a bit hard to put my finger on, it smells quite like coconut and vanilla, and completely like you’ve just had your hair professionally washed in the salon. And it feels like that too, really sleek and soft and light – I am completely in love. The shampoo and conditioner set themselves, do come in at about £10 together, fully priced (fingers crossed for some deals soon), which is expensive when I consider that I usually try and stick to more around the £3-£5 mark, but for a little treat or if you’re got a bit of cash to spare I was totally recommend these products – they literally make me feel like Claudia Schiffer after I’ve blow dried my hair, hair swishing adverts here I come!

WEAR: BDG Mom Jeans 

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I’ve been on the search for a pair of light denim Mom Jeans for a while now, so with Urban Outfitter’s tempting me with £10 off offer, I had to try a pair on. Then of course I had to buy them, just to see if they would potentially go with any of my tops at home – I can always take them back after all…. Although not quite as soft as my faithful black Topshop pair, these jeans are super comfy, and not too tough around the tummy area, which is nice. They’re a great colour for spring and are currently making me feel summery already, even if they do still have the labels in…

That’s my list of things I’m loving at the moment, what are you loving right now? 

Harriette

Coffee and Cake in Exeter

Lewis managed to get down here [Exeter] on the train for Valentine’s day yesterday and he’s staying with me over the weekend which is lovely.  We had a really nice dinner last night at Cote Brassierre on the Cathedral Green and today we braved the weather to wander into town. After a bit of shopping we stopped at The Exploding Bakery, which I had read really good reviews about from Tripadvisor.

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The Exploding Bakery is basically a really quaint little cafe with only few tables because the majority of space is taken up by a large kitchen where during the week you can watch the baristas bake the cakes fresh in store.  The Bakery’s website says “We saw a gap in the market for the type of cakes we liked to make, no nonsense, full on flavour, high quality tray bakes using the ingredients you would use at home. No added junk, no margarine, no cocoa powder, just local natural butter, belgian chocolate, vanilla extract and local free range eggs”

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I had a hot chocolate, Lewis had a latte and we both chose the Belgian Chocolate Brownies to try . The brownies were deliciously rich, in fact I couldn’t quite manage all of mine and brought a little piece home in a cute little doggy bag.

exploding bakery 3  Aside from cakes, the bakery also served homemade soup with homemade bread, focaccia, tortilla wraps and frittata as part of a lunch menu. I would recommend checking this place out if like me you like little independent business (especially ones that serve good cake).

I hope you liked this post, I can’t take credit for the photos Lewis took them all. How did you spend your Valentines weekend?

Harriette

Last Minute Valentines Gifts…

I’ve actually been pretty speedy this year, and planned and bought my boyfriend’s Valentines Day present and card [ yes, that’s right we do presents after setting the bar pretty high last year (our first Valentines Day) long before we were both living on student budgets], but incase you haven’t thought about it yet and whilst you still have time to order online. Here’s my top lists of presents to get your boyfriend/ girlfriend…

For Her 

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1) Polaroid Love Notes – £10.99 : These cute little love notes from Urban Outfitters come with their own individual envelopes – this would be a great present for a girlfriend away at Uni as you could send her one for every month.

2) Emma Bridgewater Pink Hearts Mug – £17.95: I really have a thing about cute mugs at the moment and this one is really nice. Again, another present perhaps for a girlfriend who you don’t see very often, or just one that appreciates a good cup of tea. A nice present to go with this might be some fancy hot chocolate. Available at John Lewis.

3) MAC “Please Me” Lipstick – £15.00: Personally, I think that MOST girls would be impressed with a MAC lipstick as a present, which one depends on you, but I thought this “Please Me” shade is pretty and not too bold, perfect for a Valentines pukka-up. You can buy this online at the MAC website.

4) Olivia Burton Black Applied Butterfly Watch – £82.00: Now I know that I have shown you this watch before in my Top Highstreet Wrist Watches post, however I do think this watch is simply exquisite. It is so pretty and sophisticated and if I wasn’t so in love with my own Marc Jacobs watch I would be out the door to buy it, because I think it is beautiful. Any girl would be lucky to receive this gift for Valentines. This watch is currently available on ASOS.

5) Soap & Glory “Soaper Heros” Gift Set – £13.50: I am always preaching to my males friends that if they don’t know what to get a girl, they can’t go wrong with some nice bath and shower products and with Soap & Glory there’s certainly no going wrong. This giftset in particular, available at Boots, contains some of my favourite Soap & Glory products – so let your girlfriend pamper herself with a very special giftset.

6) And finally, last but not least, for the big spender on Valentines day you can’t go wrong with these beautiful Alex Monroe Classic Daisy Stud Earrings, Silver which retail for £114.00 at John Lewis. These would make a really lovely gift for that someone special.

For Him

1) GPO Stylo Retro Turntable Record Player in Piano Black – £39.99. Alot of my friends are really getting into vinyls at the moment and they do sound and look pretty cool. For mine and Lewis’ first Christmas I bought him the Foo Fighters Greatest Hits Vinyl, which he frequently plays and he has framed the sleeves in special vinyl frames in  his bedroom. This one from Argos is a pretty good price, however you can buy vintage ones from Urban Outfitters from about £115.00.

2) Bull Dog Original After Shave Balm – £2.74. At the very cheap end of the scale, alot of men are really getting into skincare products at the moment, with companies like BullDog proving to be some of the most popular. This is just the After Shave Balm they make, but you can buy a variety of different moisturisers and other male products by BullDog online or in store at Boots.

3) Hollister First Point Shirt – £44.00. For the fashionable man, this Hollister Shirt is very smart but can also be worn casually. The navy colour is really nice and may make your man look a bit like one of those Abercrombie and Fitch models – I don’t see a down side girls!

4) Following the theme of clothing, these Jack Wills Gosworth Slim Sweatpants retailing at £49.50 are an ideal gift for the Uni Boyfriend/ General Couch Potato who can lounge around in comfortable style in a pair of these from Jack Wills.

5) Phone Links/ RC Remote Control Ferrari F50 Red Motion Car iPhone – £22.99. Well they say that boys love toys, and they especially love gadgets, so if your boyfriend is into cars and his iPhone this might be a great gift. The remote control car is controlled by an App on your iPhone/ Andriod so it’s easy to use and fun to play with. Find this product at Play.com.

6) Diesel Fuel For Life He Eau de Toilette – £25.00. Finally, you can’t go wrong with a really nice-smelling cologne to keep your man smelling fresh. This Eau de Toilette from Diesel is available in John Lewis and is made from a magic potion of mysterious star anise, vintage raspberry and authentic heliotropine.

Well that’s all I’ve got for last minute Valentine’s ideas. I hope you enjoyed the post. Would love to hear what presents people are giving on Valentine’s Day – particularly to boys [I always find them tricky to shop for!]

Harriette