Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Veggie pie recipe

I don't know about you but as soon as work goes crazy, healthy eating goes straight out the window and take-aways and M&S ready meals become the norm.  So in a bid to inject some vegetables into my diet I created a little veggie pie recipe.  It's really easy to make, tastes delicious and i'm sure each portion must be one if not two of your 5-a-day, lovely.

2x courgettes
2 x onions
2 x peppers (any colour)
1 x tin of sweetcorn
1 x tin of butter beans
Worcestershire sauce (3 good skirts)
3 big potatoes
Grated cheese
Olive oil
Salt n pepper

Happy Wednesday xx

Monday, 27 February 2012

The secretary

Good weekend lovelies?

After an incredibly long week at work I ended up at the Empire Casino in Leicester Square on Friday night and doubled the Bot's my money.  Oh yes, I won a whole £20, ha, rolling with the big dogs!!

Saturday I went to watch my friend in her first Roller Derby matched where she totally kicked ass, and Sunday mooched on down to Brixton Village with the girls for some seriously scrummy Mexican food.  Nice.

Rocking the Mad Men secretary look here - i'm trying to smarten up my work attire.  It's the prob with working in a casual office, you can get seriously lazy.  So i'm smartening up my act. 

I'm totally digging this gorgeous coral blouse with pleats.  It's from Vila who if i'm honest, i'd not heard of before.  I guess you'd call them the older sister to Vero Moda (both brands sit under the parent company, Bestseller).  True to its Scandinavian roots you'll find clean lines and sophisticated pieces that reflect the season's key trends.  And best of all none will break the bank! You can find them in the UK at House of Fraser, USC, Republic, Oliver Bonas and ASOS.  I'll be rocking a few more of their pieces over the next few months so watch this space; I guarantee you'll soon be loving them as much as me!

The breakdown
Blouse: Vila, £35
Skirt: thrifted, £6
Bag: vintage, £35
Shoes: New Look, £24.99
Glasses: Prada

Happy Monday, xx

**All views expressed in this post are my own.  I was not paid to write about any of the products featured.**

Thursday, 23 February 2012

Sweets for my sweet

Sweeite Jewellery

Having one of those weeks where the to-do list appears to have acquired the power of Pinocchio's nose and keeps on growing.

So for now i'll leave with my latest guest blog post, which you can read over at Dolly Mixture clothing.

Happy Thursday lovelies, xx

Monday, 20 February 2012

Ah ah ah ah stayin' alive

For my mum's birthday last week I headed home, and back into a winter wonderland.  En route to mum's I convinced Bot to take a slight detour and naturally took the opportunity to jump a fence to take some outfit shots in a field.  Well, how can you resist a backdrop like this?

I'm not entirely convinced by this out, I feel a tad like i'm in a 70s fancy dress. Flares will do that to you, I suppose.  Then there's the sheepskin jacket. I picked it up in a charity shop 12 years ago for a 70s birthday party.  So technically, it was a fancy dress item.  But it's more the fact that makes me feel like a retro football manager.  Mind you, considering it was only £10 and is the only thing that seems to keep me warm when the temp drops, I think I can cope. On your 'ed son.  

Happy Monday folks xx

The breakdown
Coat: charity shop, £10
Jumper: ASOS, £35
Shirt: c/o Matalan
Jeans: Primark, £6
Shoes: New Look, £24.99
Bag: Zara, £39.99

Friday, 17 February 2012

Guest blog: Dolly Mixture

The lovely folk at Dolly Mixturea fab little online shop full of 1950s inspired clothing, kindly asked if i'd guest blog for them this week.  How could I resist - 1950s + clothes, it's a match made it heaven! 

You can check it out here.

Happy Friday lovelies x

Tuesday, 14 February 2012

Happy Valentine's Day

Audrey + George + Cat = my favourite on-screen kiss of all time. 

Happy Valentine's Day xx

Monday, 13 February 2012

Happy Birthday, marmee

Aged 15

A very Happy Birthday to my mum today. Thank you for all your wisdom, patience and advice. x

On the Isle of Wight
Dining at 'our' restaurant in Montmarte, Paris
Coiffing prosecco infront of the coliseum, Rome

Friday, 10 February 2012

Valentine's idea: The date envelope

Forget 12 red roses this year **yawn** - get creative this Valentine's Day.

The lovely lady* behind the blog Find Joy In The Journey posted details of her amazing Christmas gift for her husband, which would totally work for Valentine's Day.

She got 12 envelopes and in each one put details of a date she had planned for that month with her husband. Almost all were things they had never done before. Each month they will open the envelope together, discover what the date is, and decide on a date to do it.

How stinking cute is that?

A perfect (and in my eye non-cheesy) way to make someone feel very special this Valentine's Day, and you only need to create 11 as we're already in February, even better!

Enjoy your weekend lovelies, xx

* I couldn't find her name anywhere on her blog, so sorry nameless lady for not crediting you here!

Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Sewing project: back to basics (with a hint of vintage)

My New Year's resolution in 2011 was to sew more.  And it didn't go too badly (you can see my creations here) but it's still an on-going mission of mine to sew more.
I started this skirt over Christmas, yet only finished it a couple of weeks ago.  Still, at least I finished this one - i've got tons up unfinished projects (crafty ladies, i'm sure you'll sympathise with me on this!)

This was a really simple New Look pattern (you can buy it here) - I was desperate for quite a plain black skirt to use as a basic and figured it'd be pretty easy to knock up.  The material is kinda crepey and quite suit-like, if you get me (I think it's 100% cotton, but can't be sure).  And the buttons are vintage, passed down from through the Bot's family, pretty neat.

First up, pin your pattern to the material

Next step, cut out the pieces

Darts - easier than they look, trust me 

Dart markings

I cannot stress enough how much better your sewing projects will be if you press everything as you go

Always tack the zip in place - it ensure you don't go off track and b*gger up the entire outfit (been there, done that)

Sewing in the zip

Positioning the buttons

Don't judge me, but I get quite excited about a bag of vintage buttons

Hemming has to be the most boring part of sewing an outfit.  I have been known to skip this step entirely on tops - not advisable, at some point you will have to sew the hem, otherwise you'll unravel all over the shop

Vintage hooks & eyes - found at my grandmother's house recently

Et voila, the finished article!
Happy Wednesday lovelies xx

Monday, 6 February 2012

It's snow joke

Dress, Primark -- Boots, Office -- Tights, Matalan -- Jacket, Oasis -- Scarf, present -- Hat/snood  with faux fur, vintage (via my gran, she was one stylish lady!)

Hello from a snoooooooooooooooowy London. Christmas may have been unusually mild but February has been freezing and the snow finally fell this weekend causing chaos, as per.  Cue lots of drunken snow ball fights on Saturday night!

Happy Monday folks, x

Thursday, 2 February 2012

Wines of Bordeaux blogger cook-off

Last week I headed to Westminster Kingsway Collage, with my friend Georgi in tow, ready to embark in a battle of the bloggers cook off, hosted by Wines of Bordeaux. Think Master Chef meets fab tasting wine.

After tucking in to some lovely pink bubbles we got down to business and onto the wine tasting featuring six lovely wines from all corners of the Bordeaux region, along with an education master class from the lovely Laura Clay - that lady knows her wines!  

We learnt the full-bodied Saint-Emillion would be good with saucy dishes and stews in contrast to the powerful Medoc wine with its strong personality which suits lamb dishes and strong cheese, and eagerly took mental notes for later.  My personal favourite was the Richemont, Chateau de Sours Bordeaux Rose, very reasonably priced at only £8.99 (M&S online).

On to the kitchen.  On-hand to help were chefs Jose and Jonathan, and student chefs Margarita and Sam (our saviours). We already knew we'd be cooking with Iberico pork, but we'd been kept in the dark on the rest of the ingredients.   And then the competition began - 2 hours to whip up a top notch dish, no problem.

We decided to go down the Asian route, the natural choice with a Spanish bit of pork and French wines, non? Carefully slicing the pork into 2cm slithers, we left it to marinade in a combination of orange juice, orange zest, ginger, chilli, honey, olive oil, garlic and thyme.  Then it was onto the sweet potato, roasted with garlic and more thyme before mashing. And for the side, a portion of julienned sugar snaps, carrots and beans.  The final touch - some gorgeous looking mushrooms steamed in a concoction of vinegar and sugar reduction. Oh, and some jus, just to finish it off. As one does.

We all sat down, eagerly tucking in to our dishes and those of the other teams.  We relaxed, sipped the wine and gracefully accepted our defeat...until they announced the winners.  Pure shock.

Thank you to everyone at Wines of Bordeaux, Westminster Kingsway College and Isobar Social for a fabulous evening.  We had a blast!