Friday, 27 February 2015

Less Toxic Nails? - Priti NYC Soy Nail Polish Remover (Unscented)

priti nyc soy nail polish remover review
Image via pritinyc.co.uk

As part of my ongoing quest to swap 'toxic' nail products for more friendly formulas I decided to invest in a soy-based remover. I absolutely hate using regular removers for many reasons, from the strong lingering smell to the way they dry out my nails and skin, so a more natural remover was something I'd been eager to try for quite a while.

Of course there are lots of soy-based formulas available from various brands but I opted for Priti NYC's version (priced at £12 for 2oz) to pair with the polishes I was also trying out from the same brand. Although I opted for the unscented product (which I love), a Lemongrass scented version is also available if you prefer a nice natural scent.

For me the fact that the product is unscented is a huge difference, making the overall process a much more pleasant one. At first I was quite sceptical as to just how long the 2oz bottle would last as it is much smaller than a lot of cheap removers and also carries an expiration date - in my case this date is less than twelve months after the purchase date - and after two months I have used around a third of the bottle.

Having tried out this product I'll definitely be continuing to use soy-based remover in future. Although it may carry a slightly higher price tag, for me it's worth the extra cost to banish the strong smelling chemicals and feel happier about repainting my nails as often as I like!

Following on with my 'Less-Toxic Nails' series I also wanted to include a little more detail about how effectively the Priti NYC Soy Nail Polish Remover worked on different types of polish. Here's a quick overview of my experiences using the product on 3-free, glitter and water-based formulas:

Removing 3 Free Polish: first up I tried out the soy-based remover on a regular 3-free formula with creme finish. I was very impressed with how easily the polish came away from my nails and was happy to discover that it didn't leave them, or my skin, feeling dry or in bad condition - definitely a positive start.

Removing Glitter Polish: as we all know glitter polishes are notoriously difficult to remove and unfortunately the soy remover didn't manage to tackle this issue any better than a regular polish remover. In the end it took around double the amount of product as removing the 3-free creme finish polish but it still didn't do a bad job. As this bottle of soy remover is quite small in comparison to your average remover and carries a higher price tag I'm keen not to waste it and therefore would be reluctant to wear glitter polish too often.

Removing Water-Based Polish: having read up on water-based polishes before making my purchase I was a little concerned that the removal process wouldn't be so easy without a specifically designed removal product and was prepared to follow tips such as soaking my nails in warm water before applying the remover. However I was pleased to find that the soy-based formula did a good job without any extra steps. Although its fair to say removing the water-based polish took a little more time and effort than the 3-free I was still very impressed with how this remover tackled the formula.

You can find this Soy Nail Polish Remover over on Priti NYC'S website.

Have you tried any 'non-toxic' polish removers?
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Wednesday, 25 February 2015

#PaperHaul - The Bird One

* #PaperHaul box c/o Crafty Creatives in exchange for an honest review



Today #PaperHaul's February bird-themed box has landed at e-elise etc and it features another collection of awesome stationery pieces.

As usual the box includes a real mixture of styles, this time pairing soft watercolour illustrations with contrasting postcards adorned with brightly coloured simple graphic images. Personally I prefer the softer illustrations to the bold graphics but I love that such a variety is included in these boxes as it means there truly is something to suit everyone.

This month's gift tags are particularly eye-catching with beautifully detailed bird illustrations and the washi tape looks as if it would make an amazing embellishment to add a pop of colour onto the edge of a shelf or desk. I also really love the scrapbooking papers which just like the previous two boxes feature some striking patterns - the flamingos being my personal favourite this time around!

Looking at the box as a whole my favourite item would definitely have to be the mini owl note cards as I love the combination of simple illustrations and greetings. Whilst these would of course make brilliant snail mail I also think they would look amazing framed as a trio and hung on the wall.

If you're interested in picking up the next #PaperHaul box for yourself you can sign up over at Crafty Creatives for just £10 per month.

Click here to read my review of the last #PaperHaul box!
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Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Character Style Inspiration - Hanna Marin (Pretty Little Liars)


Every Tuesday this month I've featured the wardrobe of a different Pretty Little Liars character and today is the turn of the final Liar Hanna Marin (Ashley Benson)!

For me Hanna's wardrobe is probably the least distinctive of the group as she seems to have less of a signature look and more of a mix of different styles, perhaps reflecting her struggle with 'becoming the new Ali' and feeling like she doesn't know who she really is. In recent episodes Hanna's style has evolved and become a little darker however the selection shown above focuses more on the earlier seasons.

She may not be as bold with mixing prints as fellow Liar Aria but Hanna definitely isn't afraid to create a statement look. Pairing floaty blouses or dresses, often in shades of blue, with tailored blazers and cropped leather jackets Hanna's look is the perfect mix of feminine and smart.

If you'd like to see me revisit Hanna's wardrobe and create a post focused on the later seasons let me know in the comments section below!

Shop The Look: Bardot Dress, Dorothy Perkins £5 | Wool Boucle Cropped Jacket, Jaeger £149 | Light Grey Leigh Jeans, Topshop £25 | Sleeveless Satin Blouse, H&M £12.99 | Pussybow Silk Blouse, Net-A-Porter £255 | Short Necklace, H&M £9.99 | Grey Leather Biker jacket, Next £160 | Sunburst Button Earrins, Shopbop £23.98 | Cutout Front Clean Blouse, John Lewis £38 | Collection Nail Polish in Blue Belle, Superdrug £1.99 | Coral Pumps, Dorothy Perkins £12 | White Maisie Dress, Debenhams £21 | Sunburst Tassel Earrings, Macys £30.48 | Animal Print Blazer, ASDA £12 | Lanvin Strappy Sandals, Farfetch £528.08

Catch up on the Pretty Little Liars style series - Mona Vanderwaal | Spencer Hastings | Emily Fields | Aria Montgomery

*Font used for graphics - Jenna Sue | Images of Ashley Benson via imdb.com
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Monday, 23 February 2015

How To Make Hoop Earrings In Minutes - No Tools Required!


These simple silver hoops are the perfect, ready to wear in minutes DIY to try out this week. Inspired by 'jump ring' style earrings I'd seen over on Etsy, simply made from short strips of wire, this headpin version is super easy to make. I've been wearing one in my cartilage piercing for the last few weeks and have found the delicate design extremely comfortable to wear. To create your own earring all you need is a headpin (I'd recommend sterling silver) and something round such as a pen - no tools necessary!

1. Take your headpin and a small round object (I've used a lip liner pencil). Press the headpin firmly against the side of the pencil and carefully bend the wire tightly around the shape.

2. Once you are happy with the wire loop, remove the headpin from the pencil and gently adjust if necessary to make sure the ends of the loop line up creating a full circle.

This method will work well for larger sizes of hoops too, just use longer length headpins!

3. When you're ready to wear the earring simply open it up gently by pulling apart the ends of wire in opposite directions. Make sure you do this so you are moving one piece of wire upwards and one downwards rather than pulling them outwards away from each other as this will ruin the shape of your earring.

4. Thread the end of the wire through your piercing and gently move the ends of wire back to the centre to create a full loop again.

Happy DIY-ing!

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Friday, 20 February 2015

#PaperHaul - The Orange One

*#PaperHaul box c/o Crafty Creatives in exchange for an honest review
#PaperHaul Box - The Orange One

Back in December I reviewed the first ever #PaperHaul - a new subscription box from Crafty Creatives - and was really impressed with the contents of this small fits-through-your-letterbox package so of course jumped at the chance to review another one of the boxes.

Just like the first box this edition, lovingly named The Orange One, is filled to the brim with stationery goodies including cards, papers, gift tags, stickers and washi tape. With an orange theme there's a huge variety of items featuring everything from animals to hairstyles and even a carrot!

My favourite pieces from this month's box would have to be the scrap booking/craft papers, particularly the pretty floral one which I'm already dreaming up craft project ideas for, as well as the little notecards as I love the simple telephone illustrations. The cute mint green based fox stickers will certainly be adorning the envelopes of any snail mail I send and I'm sure you'll see the polka dot washi tape pop up in a future DIY post!

Although for me it doesn't quite top December's travel themed box, overall I think this is another collection of lovely items and can't wait to see what the next box will bring!

If you're interested in picking up the next #PaperHaul box for yourself you can sign up over at Crafty Creatives for just £10 per month.

You can find my review of the first #PaperHaul box over on Eight & Sixteen!
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Library Haul #9

library haul 9

Prodigy & Champion, Marie Lu (2013)
Back in May last year I read Legend, the first in this YA dystopian trilogy which follows military prodigy June and wanted criminal Day. Even though Legend wasn't my favourite book of the genre I still planned to finish the series at some point, so when my local library finally added copies of the sequels to their catalogue I thought it was about time I did just that!

Love Letters To The Dead, Ava Dellaira (2014)
Another title I've heard a lot about in the book community is Love Letters To The Dead an epistolary novel made up of letters written by teenager Laurel. I've heard very mixed reviews but the concept sounds interesting so I'm looking forward to finding out more.

Click here to catch up on my last Library Haul.

Don't forget to follow me on Goodreads!
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Thursday, 19 February 2015

Less Toxic Nails? - Priti NYC 682 Black Moon Pansies

priti nyc black moon panises nail polish swatch
For today's Less Toxic Nails post I'm revisiting the brand Priti NYC, this time to try out one of their glitter polishes; a black-based number named Black Moon Pansies.

When it comes to glitter black-based polishes are my favourite with Topshop's Gyspy Night topping the list, so when I saw this shade I couldn't resist adding it to my collection.

Just like Rabbit Tracks the polish was extremely easy to apply and only needed two thin coats to achieve the opacity pictured above. As you can see the polish is packed full with both silver and gold glitter, fully covering each nail with even distribution and no need to apply extra coats. Another impressive factor was the drying time which to me seemed much quicker than the creme finish formula I previously reviewed. Similarly the scent of the polish wasn't as strong as some traditional formulas and certainly didn't linger on my nails after application - a definite bonus in my opinion.

Again to keep these Less Toxic Nails experiments fair I didn't apply a topcoat and unfortunately after just a few days I did experience some major chips. Luckily due to it's glittery nature the polish is particularly forgiving allowing me to repaint small areas of the nails without it being too noticeable. The other difference that comes with not applying a topcoat to this particular polish is the texture as the glitter doesn't leave the nails feeling completely smooth. Personally this didn't bother me but it's definitely something to keep in mind if you're planning to go topcoat-free.

Although Black Moon Pansies was perhaps not as hard-wearing as it's creme finish counterparts I found chips easy to fix and the overall application process, with it's quick drying time, much more pleasant.

Have you tried anything from the Priti NYC range? 

Click here to catch up on my last Less Toxic Nails post!
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Wednesday, 18 February 2015

Cut Out + Keep: Around The USA In 50 Craft Projects

*Review copy c/o Laurence King Publishing in exchange for an honest review
Cut Out + Keep Around The USA In 50 Craft Projects Cut Out + Keep Around The USA In 50 Craft Projects

Although as yet I've never been to the US something I would absolutely love to do in the future is visit all 50 states. So, when I heard about Cut Out + Keep's new book recording their very own 50 states road trip through craft tutorials I was keen to get my hands on a copy!

The book follows Cut Out + Keep (an awesome craft tutorial sharing website) founders Cat Morley & Tom Waddington on an eight month journey across the US sharing a craft tutorial inspired by their experience of each state. Paired with the tutorials are informative snippets and photographs of the sights they visited along the way making this so much more than just another craft book.

The projects featured cover a wide variety of crafts from sewing to crochet, jewellery making, paper crafts and upcycling, meaning there truly is something for everyone. The design itself is colourful, fun and the tutorials are shared in a clear format making them simple to follow with step-by-step images and large photographs of the final pieces.

Of all the fun projects included in the book my favourite would have to be the Michigan inspired License Plate notebook (pictured above) as I think it's such a clever upcycling idea and love how the finished journals look. Other eye-catching ideas include the etched Wanted Sign Mirror (Utah), hand printed Roll-up Shopping Tote (Minnesota), upcycled Food Truck Napkin Holder (Ohio) and string art Neon Sign Chalkboard (Rhode Island) which I'm really looking forward to trying out for myself sometime!

If you're looking for an inspirational mix of craft and travel Around The USA In 50 Craft Projects would be a great book to add to your collection.

Cut Out + Keep: Around The USA In 50 Craft Projects is available now.

Cut Out + Keep Around The USA In 50 Craft Projects Cut Out + Keep Around The USA In 50 Craft Projects
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Tuesday, 17 February 2015

Character Style Inspiration - Emily Fields (Pretty Little Liars)


Every Tuesday this month I'm featuring the wardrobes of the Pretty Little Liars main characters and today's post is all about the sportiest member of the group; Emily Fields (Shay Mitchell).

Emily rocks the effortlessly cool look pairing basic tees with plaid shirts, skinny jeans, black boots and minimal jewellery. In terms of accessories Emily can be found sporting stud earrings, pretty printed scarves and the occasional simple long-length necklace.

In the earlier seasons Emily's wardrobe wasn't particularly distinctive and featured a slightly lighter colour palette but in the later episodes she really seems to have found her signature look. As a swimmer and the most athletic of the group Emily's wardrobe is the ultimate stylish-yet-comfortable mix of basics and fashionable pieces perfect for layering.

Shop The Look: Chain Arm Tank Dress, Topshop £10 | Khaki Ripped Leigh Jeans, Topshop £40 | Triangle Stud Earrings, Saks Fifth Avenue £52.32 | Ankle Boots, H&M £24.99 | Lyocell Denim Shirt, H&M £19.99 | Pyramid Stud Earrings, Macys £16.04 | Zip Back Slub Vest, New Look £7.99 | Signature Check-Print Shirt, Matches Fashion £192 | Varsity Jacket, The Outnet £166.50 | Pia T-Shirt, Boutique 1 £35 | Ribbed Cashmere Scarf, The Outnet £119.40 | NARS Nail Polish In Thasos Mint Green, Liberty £15 | Open Shoulder Beaded Pullover, Stylebop £140 | Painted Geo Scarf, John Lewis £59 | Leather Look High Waisted Leggings, New Look £8

Catch up on the PLL series - Hanna Marin | Mona Vanderwaal | Spencer Hastings | Aria Montgomery

*Font used for graphics - Jenna Sue | Images of Shay Mitchell via imdb.com
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Sunday, 15 February 2015

DIY Book Page Ornament


Today's project is something I recently made as a (rather late!) little housewarming token for Michelle over in her HK apartment. As Michelle is a fellow Hufflepuff I chose to decorate the ornament with both the Hogwarts crest and a section from the very first page of Harry Potter And The Philosopher's Stone but of course you can use any book you like!

Don't worry, I didn't cut up an actual copy of Harry Potter to DIY this gift - instead I photocopied my chosen pages.

You will need: book pages or photocopies, a wooden/MDF ornament, matte Mod Podge, a brush, scissors, a hole punch, ribbon, a bead

DIY BOOK PAGE ORNAMENT

1. Take your chosen papers and trace around the wooden shape twice so you'll have one piece for each side
2. Cut out your shapes - don't forget to use a hole punch to remove paper where the hanging loop will go!

DIY Book Page Ornament

3. Apply a layer of Mod Podge to one side of your shape then stick on one of the papers and set aside to dry
4. Apply a couple of layers of Mod Podge over the top of the paper to seal it in place and protect it from any damage then set aside until fully dry

DIY Book Page Ornament

5. Repeat this process for the other side of the shape
6. Once dried add on a ribbon and bead/s to turn it into an ornament

As always I'd love to hear from you if you try out this or any other project from my DIY Archives - if you liked this project don't forget to Pin it!

Happy DIY-ing!
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Friday, 13 February 2015

Style Inspiration - Hug Earrings



My latest jewellery obsession are these simple and stylish 'hug' earrings by designer Melissa Joy Manning which I originally stumbled across over on Net-A-Porter. I really love the curved design and the way the earrings 'hug' the ear lobe, giving the look of studs without having the post or butterfly sitting on the back of the ear which can sometimes be uncomfortable.

Whilst most of the designs are 14-karat gold or rose gold there are also some styles available in silver although I've not been able to find much in the way of UK stockists for these so sadly I won't be found sporting them any time soon.

You can find more from Melissa Joy Manning's jewellery range over on Net-A-Porter.
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Thursday, 12 February 2015

What I've Been Watching Lately #4

watching lately 4

Pretty Little Liars, (Seasons 1-5a, 2010-14): via Netflix UK
Pretty Little Liars follows teens Aria (Lucy Hale), Spencer (Troian Bellisario), Emily (Shay Mitchell) and Hanna (Ashley Benson), ex-best friends who's group fell apart when fifth member Alison (Sasha Pieterse) mysteriously disappeared. The girls are brought back together at the start of a new school year when they all start to receive anonymous and threatening messages from 'A' who seems to know all of their secrets - but just who is really behind them?

When Pretty Little Liars appeared on Netflix on New Year's day I instantly knew it would be my next TV marathon. Having read the first four books in PLL author Sara Shepard's Lying Game series last year I was intrigued by the world of Pretty Little Liars and keen to catch up on the show I'd heard so much about. Although for the first few episodes I couldn't help but think of Gossip Girl every time a message from A popped up (!) I quickly got over this and was drawn in to the dark plot and guessing games. I love a good mystery and PLL certainly doesn't disappoint on that front with twists and turns around every corner - everyone is Rosewood has something to hide. As you may have guessed from both this review and my recent PLL Character Style mini series I'll definitely be continuing with the show and based on how ridiculously addictive it is I just have to give it a 5/5! ✯✯✯✯✯

The Wrong Mans, (Series 2, 2014) : via BBC
The second series of this British comedy follows up 2013's six episodes rejoining Sam (Mathew Baynton), Phil (James Corden) and all of the craziness they became swept up in. The story takes an international turn when the pair, presumed dead by their friends and family, find themselves living in Texas under witness protection. Of course trouble is never far behind them and they soon land themselves in jail, once again accidentally swept up in a crime - the question is will they ever make it back home safely?

Just as far-fetched and dramatic as the first series the new episodes were really well-written and complimented the plot of series one perfectly. I loved the unique balance of comedy and thriller/action elements and was pleased to find I enjoyed the series just as much as the first, if not more. I definitely plan to add the two-series boxset to my collection sometime soon! ✯✯✯✯✯

American Horror Story: Freak Show, (2014) : via NowTV
The fourth season of this popular Fox horror series takes place within one of the last remaining Freak Shows back in the 50's. As usual with AHS we're introduced to a whole host of interesting and dark characters with Jessica Lange returning as the show's manager and wannabe superstar Elsa Mars.

When I first heard about season 4 I had high hopes but in all honesty I was a little disappointed by the first episode. As the weeks went on and the story developed I did find myself enjoying it more and as the 'flashforwards' were introduced I became very intrigued as to how the story would unfold and what situations would lead the characters there. Whilst there were some great elements and as always, interesting characters, I didn't enjoy the fourth season as much as the previous ones. Having said that I do think AHS works best for me when marathoned on Netflix (this is how I watched the first three seasons) so perhaps I may watch it again sometime in the future. For now though I'd have to say that whilst I still liked it, Freak Show was sadly my least favourite AHS season so far. ✯✯✯

What have you been watching lately?

Click here to catch up on my last Watching post.
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Wednesday, 11 February 2015

A Little Bit Of A Makeover!


As you may have noticed over the last week things have been looking a little different around here. After four years of trying to tweak and edit the basic Blogger templates myself I still wasn't happy with how my blog layout looked and decided it was time for a change.

Firstly I took to Etsy in search of new social media icons but in the end I decided it was about time I went all out and invested in a completely new design. Having browsed the gallery over at pipdig many times before I finally settled on a pre-made template including all of the snazzy features I'd been striving for - dropdown menus, a fixed menu/nav bar, sleek social media icons, larger images (perfect for tutorials!) and easy-to-use share links for each post. If you're wondering where the photo DIY archives have disappeared to you can still find them by clicking 'Full Archive' on the DIY dropdown or visit e-elise etc DIY Archives. On a side note, I was really impressed with how easy the template was to install so if you're looking for a new design I would definitely recommend using pipdig.

Whilst there's still a few bits I still need to sort out - as you can see I've already made further edits since I took the screen shot for this post - I'm really pleased with how much tidier and more organised it's looking, I hope you like it too.

What do you think of the e-elise etc's new look?
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Tuesday, 10 February 2015

Character Style Inspiration - Aria Montgomery (Pretty Little Liars)


Arguably the most distinctive and daring wardrobe of the Pretty Little Liars gang belongs to Aria Montgomery (Lucy Hale) who definitely takes the 'queen of accessories' crown.

Her girly yet edgy style sees her sport a huge variety of looks often mixing bold prints (think animal print, lightning bolts, plaid and skulls) with statement necklaces, earrings, belts and shoes to create a look that's both eye catching and fun.

Not only does Aria love to experiment with prints she also isn't afraid to play around with different textures from pleated pleather skirts to soft scarves and sheer maxis paired with tough leather jackets. Although Aria doesn't appear to stick to a particular colour palette she is a fan of monochrome outfits and often opts for patterned black and white items to create a bold look.

Putting together this particular collection of items was quite the task for me, as Aria's wardrobe is so ecclectic - I could have written about ten posts!

Shop The Look: Pink Lip Print Crop Top, River Island £28 | Square Rhinestone Ring Pack, Topshop £8.50 | Leather Tall Boots, Stylebop £507 | Feather Earrings, Boticca £41.40 | Neon Floral Jacquard Jacket, The Outnet £321 | Stripe Denim Dungaree Dress, River Island £12 | Stud Stretch Bracelet, House Of Fraser £24.90 | Cheetah Print Sweatshirt, Covetique £90 | Polka Dot Scarf, Forever 21 £6.50 | Black Gold Flecked Statement Necklace, River Island £15 | Floral Print Peplum Shell Top, Topshop £38 | Plaid Blazer, The Outnet £544.50 | Yellow Nail Polish, New Look £2.99 | Pleated Skirt, My Theresa £430 | Skinny Jeans, House Of Fraser £34.50

Every Tuesday this month I'm sharing inspiration from the wardrobes of the Pretty Little Liars main characters. Check out my other PLL Character Style posts here: Mona Vanderwaal Spencer Hastings | Hanna Marin | Emily Fields
 
*Font used for graphics - Jenna Sue | Images of Lucy Hale via imdb.com
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Sunday, 8 February 2015

DIY Simple Jade Bracelet

diy simple jade bracelet

For today's post I thought I would share a DIY using one of the techniques from Beaded Jewelry: Wirework Techniques which I reviewed here on Thursday. To create this pretty bracelet in just minutes I used the book's easy to follow tutorial on creating wire-wrapped links using beads. Here's how to make your own...

You will need: a small Jade rondelle bead (or similar), a 3" piece of wire, ribbon, flat and round nose pliers

diy simple jade bracelet | eight & sixteen

1. Start by using flat nose pliers to bend your piece of wire at a right angle around 1" from the end

2. Grip with your round nose pliers and bend the wire up and over the top barrel of the pliers creating half a loop

3. Move your half loop onto the lower barrel of the pliers and continue to bend so that you have a complete loop

diy simple jade bracelet | eight & sixteen

4. Hold the loop still with your flat nose pliers and wrap the tail of the wire around the remaining base wire, starting directly under the loop and making your way downwards

5. Trim off any excess wire if necessary and use your pliers to make sure the end is pushed down tightly so it won't scratch when you wear the bracelet

6. Thread on your bead, move a little way along the wire then bend at a right angle using your pliers

diy simple jade bracelet | eight & sixteen

7. Repeat steps 2-5 to create a second loop on the other side of the bead allowing you to turn it into a bracelet by adding a length of ribbon on either side

Tip! For my bracelet I used the hanging ribbons from an item of clothing - often people cut these out and throw them away but they are perfect for projects like this!

As always I'd love to hear from you if you try out this or any other project from my DIY Archives - if you liked this project don't forget to Pin it!

Happy DIY-ing!
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Friday, 6 February 2015

Library Haul #8

library book haul

UnDivided, Neal Shusterman (2014)
I'm very excited to finally have a copy of this book, the fourth in Shusterman's Unwind series. I loved the previous three books and think this is a great, albeit underrated, series - there's not much else to say other than I can't wait to find out how it ends!

Flawless, Sara Shepard (2006)
Having read the first book in the Pretty Little Liars series last month I decided to pick up the next installment to find out more about how the original story differs from that of the TV adaptation. Although I did enjoy the first book this story just seems to work better on-screen for me but I'm hoping things will pick up in book two.

Miss Peregrine's Home For Peculiar Children, Ransom Riggs (2011) 
It's actually the second time I've borrowed this mysterious YA novel from my local library but unfortunately I didn't get a chance to read it back in November. I still don't know a huge amount about the plot itself - I've managed to successfully stay away from spoilers - but I've heard amazing things from fellow book bloggers so I'm really looking forward to finding out more.

Click here to catch up on my last Library Haul.

Don't forget to follow me on Goodreads & let me know in the comments if you've read any of these books!
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Thursday, 5 February 2015

Beaded Jewelry Series - Wirework Techniques & Knotting Techniques

*Review copies c/o Netgalley in exchange for an honest review
beaded jewelry book reviews

Today’s book review features not one but two titles from new informative series ‘Beaded Jewelry’.

First up is ‘Wirework Techniques’ which is packed with information on basic supplies, tools and techniques for wirework, allowing readers to achieve professional looking results. The tutorials show everything you’ll need to get started making your own jewellery pieces covering the basic findings including ear wires like those I shared in a ‘Jewellery 101’ post. Properly opening/closing jump rings and how to wire wrap beads are both also covered and the back section of the book has a guide to types of metals as well as a glossary for specialist words or terms - all perfect for beginners.

Just like the wirework guide ‘Knotting Techniques’ follows the same format talking the reader through supplies and basic techniques. For knotted jewellery types of cord and clasps are key so the first part of the book shares lots of useful information on which are the best to use for each type of project as well as help with how to calculate how much cord you will need. The final section of the book covers varieties of pearls and how to care for them as many knotting techniques are used alongside these classic gemstones.

With clear step-by-step tutorials and illustrations as well as all of the basics fully covered within a simple layout I think this series of short reference books would be a great addition to any keen crafter’s collection, particularly those who are beginner jewellery makers.

Don't forget to follow me on Goodreads for more reviews!
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Tuesday, 3 February 2015

Character Style Inspiration - Spencer Hastings (Pretty Little Liars)


Every Tuesday this month I'll be looking at a different wardrobe belonging to one of the Pretty Little Liars. Today I'm kicking off this mini-series with my personal favourite style of the group; Spencer Hastings (Troian Bellisario).

Straight-A student Spencer has a preppy everyday look with a comfortable yet always put-together feel. Simple dresses, printed shirts/blouses, smart jackets, and cosy knitwear all feature heavily and generally her outifts don't include bold accessories. When it comes to adding accessories Spencer tends to opt for a simple necklace or the occasional headwrap.

Although it may not look like Spencer sticks to a specific colour palette her clothes are usually softer muted shades as opposed to brights and unlike fellow Liar Aria, Spencer doesn't tend to mix and match bold prints often choosing to simply colour-block instead.

Shop The Look: Straight Shirt, H&M £14.99 | Martini Cami, Coast £40 | Cable Design Knee Highs, M&S £9.50 | Leather & Canvas Brogues, The Outnet £73.60 | Skinny Jeans, USC £10 | Jacquard Jumper, John Lewis £29.99 | Layering Roll Neck T-shirt, House Of Fraser £20 | Check Print Leggings, Topshop £25 | Frame-Tri Necklace, Isabella Oliver £19 | Sandwashed Silk Flippy Skirt, Topshop £60 | Shirtdress With Cutout Back, Shopbop £67.22 | Nails In Silver Spoon, Topshop £6 | Micro Check Headwrap, Forever 21 £2.50 | Bibi Plimsoll, House Of Fraser £89

Don't forget to check back next Tuesday for another Pretty Little Liars style post!

*Font used for graphics - Jenna Sue | Images of Troian Bellisario via imdb.com

Love Pretty Little Liars? Check out my other Character Style posts: Mona Vanderwaal | Hanna Marin | Aria Montgomery | Emily Fields 
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