Sunday, 30 September 2012

Sunday DIY: Two Ways To Decorate Your Notebooks

I realise I'm a little late for most people with this back to school style DIY but if you are looking for a really easy way to jazz up your notebooks, sketchbooks and diaries then keep reading!

#1 Mosaic patterned notebook

DIY notebook

To create a moasaic style design you'll need paper doilies, spray paint, sticky tape, scissors and of course a notebook (mine is £2.50 from Paperchase)
DIY notebook
Tip: It's best to use at least two paper doiles stuck together for this DIY to make sure the paint doesn't soak through.
Tape the doiles to your notebook making sure you cover the corners or any other areas you don't want to be painted with a little bit of tape as well.
DIY notebook
The best way to spray the notebook is to put it down on a table and spray the paint from directly above to make sure you get an even coverage with no drips. 
Tip: You'll also need to put down some scrap paper/newspaper underneath and around the book so you don't make too much mess!
DIY notebook 
Once the paint is dried you can remove the doily and you should be left with a pretty pattern like this one! As you can see the gold and brown combination makes a very subtle print, for a bolder look go for a white notebook and a bright colourful spray paint.

 #2 Polka Dot Notebook
For the polka dot notebook you'll need a pencil with an eraser, a selection of nail polishes and a notebook (mine is from Tiger)

Tip: Thicker consitency/fast drying polishes work best. For thinner polishes like the mint green I used you may need to go over the dots with a second layer to make them opaque 
diy notebook
Paint your polish onto the eraser and dot away!

Tip: keep a wet cloth or face wipe close by to wipe the eraser in between colours

Carry on dotting with each colour until you're happy with your design, leave to dry and that's all there is to it!

 A few more ideas for decorating your books:
- Use a sharpie to draw on a geometric pattern or animal print
- Cover the notebook with a pretty floral fabric
- Cut up pages from magazines, old books, newspapers or comic books and create a collage

Which design do you like best?

Saturday, 29 September 2012

Favourite Things: September

 Image sources - 1, 2, 3, 4

Ray Ban Erikas - It seems completely ridiculous to be including these right now as its been cold, grey and rainy outside for most of the week but for the first half of September at least I got a lot of wear out of my new sunglasses. I had mentioned these to my mum as a possible Christmas present idea as I've never had a pair of sunglasses that would actually fit my small head and not fall off my face all the time. About a week later we saw a big sign in the window of a local glasses shop offering 20% off all Ray Bans so not only was I very lucky to get these on such a good deal but I also managed to get them fitted properly too!

Variant - This was my favourite book of the month by far but sadly I haven't heard anyone else really talking about it yet. The sequel Feedback comes out in a few weeks and I've pre-ordered my copy so hopefully it won't disappoint. Like I said in my last reading challenge update Variant really impressed me and I recommend picking it up if you haven't already.

Lawless - This was the only film I watched this month that feels memorable enough to mention. I really enjoyed it and would definitely recommend it. You can find my full review here.

Kleancolor Chunky Holo Black -I posted about this nail polish back in January but I've recently been enjoying layering it over China Glaze Smoke & Ashes from the Capitol Colours collection. These two colours paired together create a dark but sparkly nail with the large holographic hexagons on top and the green/blue/silver micro glitter of S&A shining through underneath.

Link me to your September Favourites posts!

Thursday, 27 September 2012

September Film Roundup: Buy, Pass or Rent?

Anna Karenina (2012)
We're now at that time of year when films that are possible Oscar contenders start popping up all over the place and Anna Karenina is definitely one of these. Being based on the Leo Tolstoy novel with a cast of well-known British actors and BAFTA winning director Joe Wright it has certainly earned the right to be. The element that has been discussed the most is the unusual way it was filmed to feel like you're watching a play on the screen. The theatre-style set was a very ambitious idea and something I think only a director like Joe Wright could make work so beautifully. The transitions between scenes were smooth and the layout was so well thought out that it really was impressive even if slightly lavish for a mainstream release film. The costumes were also as stunning as you would expect from this type of production. Aside from the aesthetics there are some great performances, some rather unlikeable characters. The cast is led by Keira Knightley (in her third collaboration with Wright), joined by Jude Law and Aaron Taylor-Johnson. I was disappointed when I found out the role of Kitty was originally intended to go to Saoirse Ronan as it would have also marked her third collaboration with Wright, their previous projects (Hanna & Atonement) being two of my favourites. My main criticism would be the length, at 130 minutes I would say it was a fraction too long. The ending was also a little unsatisfying as what happened to all of the main characters was not explored although I'm not sure if this is the case with the book too as I haven't read it. Overall it was an enjoyable watch however for me this was primarily because of the direction and the interesting set design not the story itself.

Lawless (2012)
I went to see Lawless a couple of hours after Anna Karenina and obviously there was a huge contrast between the two. Firstly Lawless has an 18 rating which meant me and my friend (I'm 23, she's 24) both got ID'd not once but twice before we were even let into the screen leaving us wondering just how violent the film was going to be. The opening scene shows a child shooting a pig in the head and from then the human violence and graphic injury kicks in and remains a constant feature throughout. I realise that because of the graphic violence element this film won't appeal to a lot of people but surprisingly enough the direction somehow still manages to be quite beautiful. The plot of the film is actually based on the true story of the Bondurant brothers' bootleg liquor business and is adapted from the book The Wettest County In The World written by author grandson Matt Bondurant. Interestingly enough for a story that is set in the deep south the cast is mainly made up of British and Australian actors with director John Hillcoat also hailing from Australia. Continuing in this tradition the screenplay and perfectly matched soundtrack were both completed by Australian Nick Cave. The main cast includes some big names; Tom Hardy, Shia LaBeouf, Gary Oldman, Guy Pearce, Mia Wasikowska and Jessica Chastain who all gave great performances in this indie project. The film is well-paced, action packed and with a run time of just under two hours it also seems to have been very well edited. Lawless is a fantastic film, one I'll be watching again in the future, and I'd definitely recommend it if you aren't put off by the violence.

Also this month 
Pass: Double Wedding (2010), Bandslam (2009)
Rent: Man On A Ledge (2012), Psycho (1960)

What films did you see in September?


Wednesday, 26 September 2012

Weekly Style Inspiration 80.

Mirror Bunny Jumper £46, Check Wool Army Jacket £70 : Topshop
'Mary' Stretch Flared Dress £110 : French Connection
 Dinosaur Bracelet £15 : Hannah Zakari 
Suede 'Laura' Shorts £48 : Monki
Leather Backpack £55 : ASOS
Bunny jumper please! 

Sunday, 23 September 2012

Sunday DIY: Studded Earrings

This week's DIY is simple and stylish studded earrings! Keep reading to find out how to make some for yourself...

To make your own pair of studded earrings you will need: two earring posts with backs, a knife or pair of scissors, a foam sheet, glue and of course, two studs.

Tip: Click on the items listed to find where you can buy the supplies on eBay. You can also find all of these items (except the studs) at your local craft store.
The first step is to carefully push out the pins of the stud so that it will lay flat onto the foam. Next press the stud down so that it leaves an indent which matches the shape of your chosen studs. 
Now take your knife and cut along the inside edges of the indent you just made. This will leave you with two foam shapes that should fit perfectly in the studs.
Take your foam shape and find the centre point (or wherever you would like the earrings to sit) and push through one of the earring posts. Once you have it in the right place slide the post back out slightly and apply some glue where the flat part of the post sits against the foam and press back together. This is just to make sure the post won't move around later.

Tip: If you want to you can also apply some glue to the foam before moving onto the next step for extra security

Take your foam/post and place it inside the back of the stud. Carefully bend back the pins to secure the foam and earring post into place and your new earrings are ready to wear!

Tip: For more durable earrings choose square or round studs which usually have four or more pins


Wednesday, 19 September 2012

Weekly Style Inspiration 79.


Dip Dye Cardigan £45, Embellished Playsuit £45 : Topshop 
Antipodium Suede Shorts £51.75 (on sale) : The Outnet 
Brushed Heart Studs £2 : Accessorize
Studded Boots £29.99 : H&M
Lurex Scarf £42.99 : Mango

This week's selection is definitely moving into Autumn-appropriate colours and styles. A good pair of boots is essential for surviving the English weather and this pair from H&M look like they would be great for everyday wear especially with the understated stud detailing across the back gives which them a fashionable edge. A cosy scarf is another essential and this one from Mango (an online exclusive) looks like it would keep you both warm and stylish although at £42.99 it does seem a tad overpriced.
I personally favour a more subtle dip dye over the brighter shades we've seen throughout the summer months so I think this Topshop cardigan is the perfect way to wear the trend. It is also of course a great DIY project if you want to save a few pounds! Another money-saver are these suede shorts by Antipodum which are currently on offer with a huge 55% off discount at I'd love to add a pair of suede or velvet shorts to my A/W wardrobe this year and I really like the high waisted shape and neutral tone of these.

For party wear this coming season the colour and shape of this Topshop playsuit caught my eye. For a dressy occasion I'd pair it with opaque black tights and some rose gold accessories like the bargain buy Accessorize heart earrings.

Which items have caught your eye this week?

Monday, 17 September 2012

Fortnight in Photos #2

Butterfly nails from this week's tutorial / More library reservations / :) / Current rental / Felt Bookmark DIY post / Moving my books! / Double feature day - look out for both in this month's film roundup / New scarf / DIY nail polish / Current favourite nail combination / Gluten and lactose free cheesecake, so exciting! / Amazing Sweet Sundays offer / More reading / Building my chair / Nails are on their way to S&S, two designs already available

I also want to say thank you again to Alex who blogs over at Velvet-Tidesxo for naming me her blog of the week yesterday! You should all go and have a read of her lovely blog :)


Sunday, 16 September 2012

Sunday DIY: Custom Nail Polish


diy nail polish
To make your own custom nail polish shade you'll need a clear polish, some paper and an eyeshadow of your choice. If the eyeshadow is pressed you'll also need something to cut/crush it with although it would be easier to use a loose powder shadow if you have one!

I used Natural Collection polish in Crystal Clear & MUA eyeshadow in shade 14.

diy nail polish
If you need to start by crushing some of the eyeshadow into a fine powder so that it will be easier to mix into the clear polish.

diy nail polish
Roll up your piece of paper to make a funnel that fits into the top of your polish bottle and start to add the crushed eyeshadow into the bottle.

diy nail polish
To make sure it is properly mixed in so you don't get any lumps when you try to paint it onto your nails later you'll need to give the bottle a good shake.

Tip! You may find that in between uses when the polish is in storage it may seperate so remember to give it a shake before each use!

diy nail polish
Once it's all blended together smoothly you can test it out on your own nails or a nail wheel if you have one. You may need to add some more eyeshadow to get the colour opaque so repeat the process until you are happy with it. I used approximately half of my eyeshadow which is 1g of product with an 8ml bottle of clear polish.

diy nail polish
The nail on the left shows my finished polish shade, the one on the right is the first swatch before I decided to add more eyeshadow. You could also add some polyester glitter to make yourself a custom sparkly shade!

Tip! If you don't want to make a full bottle of polish you can pour some of your clear polish onto a piece of foil, add the eyeshadow to that, stir with a cocktail stick or brush and paint onto your nails straight away! You can also use this technique to make custom colour by mixing exisiting polish shades.

diy nail polish
Tip! Make sure you put down a piece of paper or make your polish on a tray as you may end up with a mess that looks a bit like this.
The total cost of this DIY polish was £2.89

Saturday, 15 September 2012

2012 Reading Challenge: Twenty-Six Books Down!


For the first time in the challenge I'm having to write a completely negative review as unfortunately book twenty-three, Numbers, just wasn't for me. It tells the story of a teenage girl named Jem who can see anybody's date of death just by looking into their eyes which sounds like a fairly intriguing setup. As I began to make my way through it I found it wasn't what I had been expecting at all. I didn't care for any of the characters and the language style frustrated me. If I'm being completely honest I struggled to finish it as I wasn't enjoying it at all but I refused to be defeated by a book. It is the first in a trilogy and the other two books, The Chaos & Infinity, follow Jem's son who of course can also see the numbers but sadly I won't be reading either of them.

The next book I chose was Pretties which is the first sequel to Uglies. This time around there were even more annoying phrases, 'bogus' and 'bubbly' being the worst of the selection as well as the addition of nicknames such as Tally-wa and Shay-la. If you've read the series you'll be aware that in this case there is a valid reason for the characters to be using these kinds of terms but I still found them frustrating. When I read the ending of Uglies I had a basic idea in my mind of what I expected some of the main events to be in Pretties but I was completely wrong. I didn't really enjoy the plot of this book or the new characters. At the beginning of the series the main character Tally is fifteen about to turn sixteen and I do feel that if I had read them when I was that age I maybe would have enjoyed them more.

My favourite of this roundup is book twenty-five; Variant. In actual fact I think this is one of my favourites of the challenge so far. I don't know anyone else that has read Variant so I didn't have any expectations when I picked it up and luckily I was pleasantly surprised. As the front cover quote from James Dashner (author of the Maze Runner series) states this book has a big an unexpected twist which I personally wouldn't have predicted. Without being too spoilerish the twist means that the book crosses over into another genre which I wasn't previously aware that it was a part of, so if you do read this one watch out for page 218! The characters are so much more likeable than those of the other books I've mentioned in this post and I thought the plot itself was well-paced. I actually also enjoyed the fact that it was set in one building as it meant that more time could be spent on introducing different characters and giving information about the school rather than describing various locations. The writing style is quite basic but to me that didn't matter because the story itself was interesting and was a total page-turner. The only sequel (author Robison Wells has confirmed this will not be a trilogy) named Feedback is released on October 2nd and thanks to the cliffhanger ending I'm very excited to receive my pre-ordered copy.

Although I hadn't been overly impressed by the series so far I decided to read Specials which is the third in the Uglies quartet. The first thing I noticed was the addition of summarising paragraphs as little reminders of events that had happened in the previous two books, something I don't remember there being very much of in Pretties. As I have read the other books recently and the events are still relatively clear in my mind I found these recaps to be repetitive and unnecessary although I can see how they would be useful if you were picking up Specials a long time after the others. Part one of the book wasn't enjoyable and was very forgettable however parts two and three had a few more interesting sequences and ideas. I will be finishing the series by reading Extras at some point and although its very popular I still believe there are better YA dystopian novels out there.

Only four more books to go!

You can read about books 18-22 here.

Have you read any of these books? What are you currently reading?

Friday, 14 September 2012

Giveaway Information!


The lovely Kel who blogs over at The Gluten Free Photographer is currently holding her first non-food giveaway featuring the Sawyer & Scout bracelets pictured above which were handmade by myself!

Its a really simple giveaway, all you need to do to be in with a chance of winning is to 'like' both of our pages on Facebook and once we reach our target number of likes two winners will be chosen at random. We only need around twenty more likes so get clicking! :)

You can find The Gluten Free Photographer Facebook page here
and the Sawyer & Scout page here.

For more details take a look at this blog post or click on the photo above.

There's also around ten hours left to enter my handmade felt bookmark giveaway here on e-elise etc so if you haven't already entered you can do so via Rafflecopter here!

Good luck!

Thursday, 13 September 2012

Butterfly Nails


Butterfly nails have become really popular on Tumblr and Pinterest recently so I thought I'd do a quick tutorial post on how to recreate the look.

Base polishes used for the three alternative colour schemes above (L-R) China Glaze Fast Track, Natural Collection Hibiscus & China Glaze Luxe & Lush, Topshop Hidden Treasure


Polishes used: H&M Lemon Tree, Natural Collection Antique Coral, Max Factor Red Passion, ELF Twinkle & Claire's Accessories nail art pens

1.  The first step is to apply your base colour, for this tutorial I created a basic ombre look using bright yellow, orange and red applied with a foam sponge. To add some sparkle to the base I also applied a coat of a fine glitter.
2. Next you need to add a slightly curved line across one of the corners using your nail art pen or a striper brush.
3. For the next set of lines you are pretty much free to place them wherever you want to so you don't have to worry about being too precise. As you can see from the nail wheel above I tried out different placements of the lines for each nail.
4. Once you're happy with you're lines you need to join them up with small curved lines or semi circles as if you were trying to create a sort of spider's web design.
5. Take your black polish and fill in the shape you have just created at the edge of the nail so you have a solid black area.
6. Once the black is dry use a nail art pen or dotting tool in a contrasting colour to apply the dots. Seal with your favourite topcoat and your butterfly nails are done!

As always leave me a comment or tweet a photo if you try this out, I'd love to see!

What are your current favourite nail trends?

Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Weekly Style Inspiration 78

Ladder Jumper £40, Space Dye Snood £18, Tapestry Shorts £32 : Topshop
Skater Skirt £34, Glitter Slippers £28 : Miss Selfridge
Hayworth Shirt Dress £140 : All Saints
Khaki Jumper £19.99 : New Look
Tote Bag £45 : Oasis

More autumnal shades this week even though the weather here has been surprisingly bright and sunny recently. I really like the Topshop snood and New Look jumper together, they're both items I would wear and I'd love to pair them with black skinny jeans & brown lace up boots.
Tapestry prints seem to be creeping into a lot of the high street stores A/W collections this year and it's a print that I'm pleased to see, mainly because it reminds me of Mary Poppins!

Which A/W trend is your favourite?

Tuesday, 11 September 2012

Five Favourites: Go-To Films

go to dvds

Wild Target - When I went to see Wild Target at the cinema I didn't love it, my friends didn't even like it, I've lent it to people since and still to this day I know no one else who likes this film. It was only the second time around that I really found it funny and since then I've watched it countless times but it still makes me laugh. For some reason the Bill Nighy/Emily Blunt/Rupert Grint trio just works and it has a great soundtrack too. My favourite part is probably the birthday party scene for Bill's character Victor.

Zombieland - This became a firm favourite straight away when I decided to rent it from the library just over a year ago. I really love the main cast; Emma Stone, Woody Harrelson and Jesse Eisenberg who are all perfectly suited to their characters and of course Bill Murray's appearance was a good surprise too. Right from the opening credits this film has a distinct style and again a flawless soundtrack. The improvised sequence where the four main characters are driving along and chatting is one of my favourites but if I had to pick the best scene I think I'd go with the acting out of Ghostbusters!

Mean Girls - I don't really feel the need to say anything else other than who doesn't love Mean Girls?! It's the ultimate teen movie of the 2000's and as Gretchen would say is "so fetch".

Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone - This is my most watched of the Harry Potter series because it's the lightest and most fun of the eight. Like all five of my choices I can pretty much recite it word for word and it always cheers me up to hear my all time favourite Ron line "she needs to sort out her priorities".

About A Boy - This film has been a firm favourite of mine since I saw it at the cinema back in 2002. Again, I don't know many other people that love this film but for some reason I find it hilarious. Its also another one that I think has a perfect soundtrack. I recently picked up the book, which I had been putting off for so long because of how much I love the film, and am planning to do a comparison post once I've read it (after my reading challenge is complete) so lookout for that if you're interested in how they differ!

So, in no particular order, those are my top five 'go-to' films, the ones I reach for the most. When I don't know what I want to watch I do know any of these will make me laugh.
I found it so difficult to narrow it down to five that I'm going to cheat and throw in another five that narrowly missed the cut... Bend It Like Beckham, Tropic Thunder, Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, Legally Blonde & Charlie Bartlett

What are your most watched DVDs?

Monday, 10 September 2012

Natural Collection Sugar Mouse

natural collection sugar mouse 1

natural collection sugar mouse5 
OPI Skull & Glossbones with (L-R) a topcoat of Sugar Mouse, a topcoat of Barry M Pink Iridescent & worn alone

Sugar Mouse is a light based pearl topcoat that shimmers a pinky-coral shade when it catches the light. Until recently I haven't tried any of the Natural Collection polishes other than their basic white but the other day I went to pick up a cheap clear polish for this week's Sunday DIY and ended up also buying Sugar Mouse as part of their 3 for £5 offer. It can be used as a topcoat to transform the colour of any other polish, can be worn alone as a one coat sheer shimmer or as an opaque shade by applying three coats. Unfortunately its pretty difficult to capture this colour on camera but hopefully you can get an idea from these photographs. This polish applies quite nicely, has an average drying time and feels very smooth on the nails. My only criticism of the Natural Collection range of polishes in general would be the brush size as personally I prefer to paint my nails with a thicker brush.

Natural Collection polishes are available at Boots priced at just £1.89

What do you think of Sugar Mouse?

Sunday, 9 September 2012

Sunday DIY: Felt Bookmark & Giveaway!

DIY felt bookmark
I saw a photo of a heart shaped bookmark on Tumblr a while back and knew I had to make one for myself!


I'm going to try something new this week and hold a mini giveaway featuring two bookmarks just like the one in this DIY! If you'd like to win one all you need to do is use the Rafflecopter entry form below leaving your contact email address and answering the question telling me what your favourite book is! You can also gain extra entries by following me on twitter (+1), tweeting about this giveaway (+1) or liking the Sawyer & Scout facebook page (+1)

- You must follow via GFC to be in with a chance of winning
- If you are under 18 please get permission as I will need your postal address if you win
- You can tweet about the giveaway once per day for extra entries
- There will be two winners
- The giveaway ends on September 15th 2012


Good luck!


Thursday, 6 September 2012

Mermaid Nails


This design was requested after I showed it in my dotting tools review post (click here to view). It isn't one for those of you who don't have a lot of time to spare but it does also work really well as an accent nail design rather than a full manicure.

To create this look all you need to do is apply your base colour and once it's dry put a small blob of each dotting colour onto a piece of foil. Then just use your dotting tool to dot along the nail in horizontal lines alternating colours as you go along until you've covered the whole nail.

- It's best to use largest size dotting tool you have (if you have a basic set like mine) or if not a DIY dotting tool using a pin and a pencil with an eraser on the end will work best for this particular design as if you use a smaller dotting tool it will take you forever!
- I find the best thing to use to clean the dotting tool in between each colour is a face wipe!

As always let me know if you try this out, I'd love to see!

Wednesday, 5 September 2012

Weekly Style Inspiration 77

Woven Slippers £22, Jumper £36, Dress (petite) £38, Leather Tote £95 : Topshop
Sultan Silk Vest £77 : French Connection
Mohair Bobble Hat £4.99 : New Look 

Tuesday, 4 September 2012

2012 Reading Challenge: Twenty-Two Books Down!

reading.JPG a monster calls

Book eighteen was Player One by Douglas Coupland which was considerably different to the other books I've read for the challenge so far in terms of the style and format. The story is set in an airport cocktail lounge during a global disaster and is written in a real-time format with each chapter representing one of five hours. Within each hour there is a section from each character's point of view; Karen, Rick, Luke, Rachel and the mysterious 'Player One', following the same sequence for every chapter. I hope this isn't a spoiler for anyone but I thought there was going to be this big mystery about who Player One was but it was actually revealed very early on. After a little while it did seem to be dragging even though it's a pretty short book and I found myself frequently switching between 'liking it' and finding it 'just okay' throughout.

Uglies was one of my first Kindle purchases and everything was going well until one evening I was reading, tapped to turn the page to the next chapter and my Kindle refused. Basically I kept receiving an error message even after following the suggested troubleshooting tips on the website, ended up with a refund and no way to finish the book I was halfway through. Luckily I remembered that I had seen the paperback in a local charity shop the week before and when I went back to pick it up it was still there! At first I wasn't too sure where the story was going but then it all fell into place very quickly and overall I enjoyed it but just not quite as much as some of the other 'similar' books I've read recently. One thing that did annoy me were the unimaginative town names; the uglies live in Uglyville, new pretties in New Pretty Town etc which seemed more like something you would find in a children's book than YA. Despite me being picky about the names I would recommend trying out Uglies if you enjoy this genre in general. I'm looking forward to reading the rest of the quartet and finding out what happens to Tally and co.

My twentieth book ended up being another novel which has been adapted into a film I'd already seen and really enjoyed. The film adaptation of Winter's Bone was released back in 2010 and I wrote about it briefly here. I definitely found it much easier to visualise the setting and characters due to having previously seen the film. However like Player One it isn't a very long book but it did seem to take me a while to get through it. Overall I thought it was well-written and made a nice change from my go-to of stories set in the future.

My favourite book from this selection was another dystopian tale (surprise surprise!) in the form of Unwind by Neal Shusterman. Right from the beginning it was an exciting book with a lot of page-turner moments and I actually ended up reading it rather quickly as I couldn't wait to find out what was going to happen next. As a film lover this book did scream out to me as being perfect for a cinematic adaptation. I know people often worry that their favourite books will be ruined by filmmakers but I think the story and the world Neal Shusterman has created would work well on the big screen. I do however have one complaint although it is a minor one, Connor was spelt Conner at one point and I'm pretty sure a bracelet even magically turned into a necklace within a few sentences but I'll forgive the poor proof-reading because I really loved the book. I'm looking forward to reading the rest of the series starting with the second instalment Unwholly which was released in hardback on August 28th and is coming to paperback/Kindle on September 27th (I've already placed my paperback pre-order!).

Book twenty two A Monster Calls made its way onto my list out of curiosity after seeing countless five star reviews alongside a list of award wins. Unfortunately I was pretty disappointed when I finally got to read it as it wasn't what I was expecting at all. Its written by Patrick Ness who is well-known for the Chaos Walking series (I have these and haven't read them yet!) but is based on an idea by Siobhan Dowd. My favourite part of this book was actually the illustrations drawn by Jim Kay, one of which is pictured below. I'm definitely in the minority with my opinion of this book so if you were planning to read it don't let me put you off!

You can find books 12-17 here.

What have you been reading recently?

Monday, 3 September 2012

Fortnight in Photos #1

A preview of next week's Sunday DIY / Crossover Nails from this tutorial post / A trip to the zoo! / Watching some classic Saved By The Bell / The bunnies love to climb / Hunger Games DVD pre-order arrived early...... / and with free postcards :) / Currently reading Variant by Robison Wells / Cute bunnies I wanted to buy / A very early Christmas present / Squidge being cute / This week's Sunday DIY

As you may have guessed from the title of this post I've decided to change things up a bit and start doing fortnightly photo posts instead of weekly ones. Recently I haven't been very enthusiastic about putting together the weekly posts but I don't want to stop doing them completely as I know a lot of people enjoy them. So, I'm hoping that by doing things this way I'll have a little more to include in them each time and it will also allow me to post other things on the Mondays in between!

Posts coming up this week:  a reading challenge update, some nail art, weekly style, a bookmark DIY and another five favourites!

Sunday, 2 September 2012

Sunday DIY: Wrapped Pencil Jar


I've recently been thinking a lot about DIYs for my new garage workspace which is now almost finished and I decided this empty peanut butter jar would make a cute pencil pot to tidy things away once I get a desk. There are so many different ways to customise glass jars using fabrics, spray paints or pretty papers but I decided to use up some things I had lying around and came up with this design. To make your own wrapped pencil jar follow the steps or photographs below!

You will need: a glass jar, twine or string, a glue gun, buttons, lace or ribbon, scissors

- First put a small blob of glue near the bottom of the jar to secure the end of the twine. Once this is fixed in place continue using the glue around the bottom edge of the jar until you get back to the beginning of your piece of twine

- After this you should be able to just wrap the twine around the jar without using glue all of the time although you may occasionally need to glue the twine in place every few rows to make sure it stays in place

- Once you've wrapped right to the top of the jar finish off with another blob of glue

- As the jar I used had an indent at this point I decided to use a piece of lace to cover the top part. If you want to do this just measure around the top of the jar, cut the lace to size and glue in place

- To cover where the twine and lace meet I added buttons all around the top, again if you want to do this just use the glue gun to keep them in place and your new pencil jar is finished and ready to use!

DIY pencil jar

As always if you try this out let me know, I'd love to see!
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