Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Saturday night fever.

I promised an outfit post with what I wore on Saturday night for tea with the in-laws. So here it is..

Midi dress - Dorothy Perkins £16.50, I though this was a bargain, they had other colours but only this one in my size. I bought a size 6 (I'm usually an 8) but I always find the sizes tend to be bigger in DP. I love the way my necklace looks with a plain colour, it really makes it stand out! Looking at these I realise I desperately need a new leather jacket..this one is aged 13-14 from Tesco about 2 years ago, so it has served me well!

Also it is payday tomorrow, so I obviously need to empty my bank to make room for more money. I withdrew the last of my pennies and went back to Accessorize to grab a few more bargains. Here's what I got..

Lippy, nail varnish and a cute necklace came to the grand total of £5.40!

Katie x

Tuesday, 28 February 2012

Have you seen the Muffin Man?

Today is my man's birthday. I'm totally devastated as he has literally been in bed ill all day! He is NEVER ill and today, of all days he is. He didn't even make it to work, so he's had a pretty rubbish day. I had lots of plans today to make a birthday cake and make him a special tea but he isn't up to eating anything. Cheese on toast for me then..

I went ahead and made a cake anyway, I got so bored and didn't want to go out incase he needed anything, so I went on a little baking frenzy. I love, love, love to bake, it is so therapeutic, but I rarely get time to or don't have the ingredients I need. I went out on my dinner break yesterday and filled up my baking cupboard ready for today! So I've made a yummy lemon cake for Jonathan (when he feels up to it) and some gorgeous dark choc chip muffins (with Hotel Chocolat Chocolate) mmmmm yum!

I just made a basic lemon cake with lemon butter icing! The candles won't stand up though cos they are too heavy..oops!

 I then made some muffins! They taste delish! I could bake all day but my gas bill doesn't thank me for it..

Katie xx


Baby be mine.

I don't really have a lot of time on my hands to really get into a book. I'm forever seeing things I would like to read but never get round to picking them up. I was given a book for Christmas so made sure I give it a go. The book was 'Baby Be Mine' by Paige Toon. I've read all of her books and they are amazing. I'm dyslexic and sometimes find it really difficult to get into a book, sometimes the font is the wrong style or there are too many words squeezed onto a page or I'm just simply struggling to read it. I have a habit of picking up a book reading a few chapters then never going back to it. But for some reason all of Paige Toon's books have been completely different, and this was no exception. It is a follow on from one of her previous books 'Jonny be good' but you don't need to have read that one to understand this new one. It was a complete page turner just like her previous ones.

Basically Meg (the main character) has a Son with her partner who she knows isn't his Father. His father is actually a famous rock star. The whole book is following Meg's life as she decides what is best for her, her son and the two baby-daddy's. If you like a good chick-lit this is perfect, trust me you wont be disappointed.

You can get hold of any of Paige Toon's books from amazon.

Any chick-lit recommendations for me?

Katie xx

Monday, 27 February 2012

The winner takes it all.

My father in law and his wife came to visit over the weekend. We had a really nice day on Saturday, we had a leisurely walk round the Trafford Centre, while I tried so hard not buy anything! For some reason when ever I am willing to buy, there is nothing I want but when I am skint I could buy the whole shopping centre..This is what I wore..

 Dahlia dress and Next jumper!

Anyway Gail had a 25% off voucher for Dorothy Perkins and INSISTED on buying me something with it (how could I say no?!) so I picked up a really cute midi dress. I actually wore it for tea on Saturday night, with my beautiful statement necklace, I will be posting a pic soon! I love the Trafford Centre and the heart and soul has to be Selfridges. It's like a haven of niceness. I NEED everything. Actually need. When I win the lottery (when I remember to put it on) this will be the first place I start spending...

These will be my first purchases. Jimmy Choos and a Mulberry bag. One day I WILL own these. When I go back to uni in September I will be counting down until I'm qualified and cos get a 'real' job and actually save for the luxuries in my life ha!

What would you buy with lottery winnings?

Katie xx


Sunday, 26 February 2012

As free as my hair.

I got some inspiration for a few post in the shower, for some reason things seem to just 'come to me' when I'm washing my hair.. I thought it was time I raved about some of my favourite hair and body products. Here's what is in my shower at the moment..

As you can see I do haul the hair products. My hair got so damaged from bleaching it, it has taken a lot of effort and patience to get it slowly back to an acceptable condition. After speaking to the hairdresser she suggested a few products to give a go. My best purchase is defiantly the Redken hair mask. This is a deep conditioning treatment, that only take 10-15 minutes to work (perfect time to shave your legs!). I've use Redken products before and they have always lived up to my expectations, plus smell delicious!

I have a variety of shampoo, as I've always been told to not to keep the same shampoo too long cos your hair gets too used to it. So I tend to change between a few. My favourite at the moment is actually 'Perfect Brunette' this was an impulse from Home bargains for 99p! It actually has the same consistency as some of the 'designer' shampoo's I've tried and comes out a medium brown colour and its fairly thick. It gives an amazing shine too! I also like to use a Loreal shampoo for sun damaged hair, this was recommended by the hair dresser cos of the bleach damage, this is pretty good but not as an everyday shampoo. And as always I give Aussie a go a few times a week.

The perfect conditioner in my eyes HAS to be Tigi Bed Head Brunette Goddess, you literally need the tiniest amount and it takes seconds to do it's magic. I love the amount you get in a bottle cos it lasts forever and defiantly is the best value for money!

As you can see there are a few samples, Philip Kingsley Elaticizer came in December Glossybox. I've got to say I'm not that impressed. I've seen so many rave reviews, maybe my expectations were too high, but it just doesn't do it for me. I just do get why you put it on before shampoo?! It just didn't seem to work its magic on my locks as well as it seems to have on others.

Soap and Glory Foam Call is my all time favourite shower wash. If you haven't tried this you must!! I've had a few Soap and Glory washes but this is by far the best. Its muti-talented and can be used as bubble bath too. You use literally a pea-sized amount and it foams like crazy. This smells good enough to eat, and make you feel soft and yummy for the rest of the day! Plus it last for a lonnngggg time!

Just some little beauties from my bathroom!

What are your wonder products?

Katie xx

Saturday, 25 February 2012

Feather fabulous.

We all know times are tough. Prices are through the roof (especially fuel!!) and shops are shutting left, right and centre. I was walking through Bolton town centre on Thursday and saw Accessorise were have a super sale..over 70% off. This is unlike them at this time of the year so I wandered in. It only took me a few seconds to realise this was no January sale extended but was the shop selling up and closing. What is this country coming to? This particular shop is in a prime location and should therefore have plenty of visitors, but this is proof that times are really hard. I have thought in the past Accessorise can be quite pricey, and have always looked forward to the sale, but I am a little disappointed that it will no longer be there to browse. I am assuming this won't be the only store shutting, although it is upsetting for those working for the company and potentially losing jobs, it is kinda cool that they have some really good bargains.

I picked up a statement necklace which will look amazing with the perfect outfit (when I find it!) and a nail polish for £1.20 instead of £4! I've tried their nail varnish in the past, its pretty good against chips and has a vibrant colour after a couple of coats, I couldn't say no for such a cheap price!

This is the necklace I got. Sorry about the photo I was struggling to find somewhere to hang it! This was reduced from £24 (a bit steep) to £5.80. I was so pleased with this find, statement necklaces are everywhere at the moment, I just need an excuse to wear it! I love the feather detail as it brings some sort of delicateness (if that's a word) to a quite masculine, chunky piece of jewellery.

Have you got any ideas how I can wear this?

Katie xx

Friday, 24 February 2012


I've been after some new boots for ages...well since I got myself some new Emu boots in January. As much as I love my Emu's they are used mainly for snow/casual wear and don't really go with most of my clothes. I bought the cutest pair of boots about 6 months ago from Primark, but I've worn the life out of them and thought it was time to say goodbye. I've been lusting after some Topshop boots for yonks, but the price tag always puts me off (mainly cos I know I can probably get a whole outfit for the price of one pair of beautiful boots). So I window shopping yesterday and stumbled across Internacionale, now you either love it or you hate it. When I was in my teens it was the go-to place, but I kinda became to 'cool' to shop their when Topshop etc. came into my price range! But they have totally turned it around within the last few years, (I know what your thinking, you already know this), I've been really impressed with their ranges, and keeping up with trends. Unfortunately they don't have a website, which is a major downfall for me as I love to internet window shop!

Anyway, the reason I mention it is because I spotted THE boots in store. The boots that were going to replace my pretty Primark ones that I had become so attached to. They are the perfect boot and soooo much like these Topshop ones I didn't splurge on. I am so glad I waited and picked up a bargain.

Topshop AMBLE £70// Topshop AMBUSH £75

These boots are so versatile and would fit in with my wardrobe perfectly. Nearly as perfectly as the ones I actually bought..

Internacionale £24.99

These are my boots. I love the zip detail, and cos I'm a tiny 5'2" the heel is perfect for me, not too high to be uncomfy but high enough to give me a confidence boost. I admit they are never going to be the same quality materials as Topshop but the style is perfect as a close match. These are going to probably be worn every second I have outside of my work plimsolls! I'm soo excited about these joining my shoe collection, just have to make sure my man doesn't find them, as I obviously don't need another pair of boots (but what does he know?!).

Katie xx

Thursday, 23 February 2012

Beauty on a budget.

After a long shift yesterday (6am-4:30pm), my hubby treat me to tea. We just went to a cheapy 2 for £10 place, him being on a student budget, but it was still nice to spend some time together not in the house. Our lives are totally different and pretty full-on, I work 40+, unsociable hours a week and he is a trainee teacher so our paths never really cross. I can't wait until the summer when we will have a little more time together to do fun, cheap things. I'm currently planning the almost perfect trip to London, which may involve camping on his best mates floor..never the less I'm sure it will be fun.

My hectic lifestyle is defiantly playing its toll on my skin. I've mentioned before I have spot-prone, sensitive skin and have to be pretty careful with what products I use. I had some sample last week of Keihl's skincare, I was sooo excited to give them a go after talking with the girl at the beauty counter, but it didn't go well. I used a foam wash and exfoliator and my skin immediately began burning and became red and blotchy. I was so disappointed cos I've heard so many good things about this brand.

As much as I love my crazy sulphur soap, I needed to get back into a 'proper' routine with my skin. As always I headed for Boots website in search of product reviews. After scrolling through numerous reviews, I came across two products which fit my criteria and were within my price budget (it's nearing the end of the month!). So these are the products I'm giving a go...

Neutrogena Visibly Clear 2 in 1 Wash and Mask. I was a little worried about purchasing Neutrogena again, as I have had problems in the past. However the product I had problems with is no longer available, so I figured it wasn't only me! But so far so good. The instructions are simple, to use as a wash you wet the face and lather. And to use as a mask you apply to a clean, dry face and leave for 5-10 minutes. I have accidentally only used this as a mask, as I didn't realise how little you need to use it as a wash. For the mask I have literally had to use a 5p sized amount for my whole face. The consistency is thick but doesn't feel like it clogs your pores and leaves you face as soft as a baby's bum!

After washing/using the mask I then use Simple Clear Skin Oil Balancing Exfoliation Wash.

This is so refreshing. The beads in the exfoliator are really small, so don't cause irritation to sensitive skin. This has Witch Hazel and Zinc in to both reduce spot size and redness, and naturally balance the oil the skin produces. Again, you only use the tiniest amount to cover the whole face and massage GENTLY! This gives my skin a much needed boost.

I've only been using these products for two days, so didn't expect to see much change in my skin. I have been pleasantly surprised that the redness has calmed down, however I am still experiencing pimples. Hopefully this routine, followed by my trusty No7 Moisturiser will eventually get my spots at bay and help to clear my skin. I would ideally like something to put directly onto my spots to try and reduce the size, I've heard Liz Earle makes a product called 'Spot-on' which I may have to give a go. Has anyone tried this?

I have also given up chocolate bars and sweets for Lent. I'm not religious, but I always give up something for Lent, I guess as a challenge to myself. I figured giving up these would boost my health, if nothing else. Have you given up anything for Lent?

Katie xx

Wednesday, 22 February 2012

Pancakes and Pugs.

I saw this type of post on a blog earlier this week and thought it was a fab idea, so here I am (with a face mask on) showing you my inspiration for this week..

I know, scary right? (excuse the dressing gown..)

Topshop Jeans//The most gorgeous pug//WOW nails//Sophisticated hair//Christopher Kane Clutch

I hope everyone had a fun, flippin' pancake day yesterday I certainly did!

I had yummy Nutella on mine! What do you love sweet or savoury?

Katie xx

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Tartan Tuesday.

I love my job, at times. But there is absolutely nothing that I love about the uniform. Pets at Home is possibly the worse uniform there is going (after Ikea that is..) it is the least flattering clothing in the world. When I worked for Outfit, I was desperate to have a set uniform for work, but what I would give to wear pretty LBD's for work now..So on my rare days I try to be as girly as I can, and get as far away from the 'zoo keeper' look as possible. This is my normal everyday look...

Excuse the mess, and yes that is Peter Rabbit in the back ground! This is my tartan dress I was raving about. I love that it is quite thick so keeps me warm and my Central heating bills down! As you can see I'm having a 'glasses day', loving a bit of geek-chic. I'm still suffering with a bad break out I'm not sure whether to go back to docs and get them to sort me out! Sometimes I hate being a girl.

Katie xx

Make do and mend.

My week has been full of DIY. Working in retail, really doesn't leave me with too many pennies to splash out with, so we took it upon ourselves to re-vamp our retro furniture. Families come in so handy when you need freebies, pretty much all of our furniture was donated or bought from a friend of a friend at a bargain price! For the first time in a long time, we actually have furniture that matches the rest of our stuff. I have a kind of country cottage style and I really wanted our furniture to reflect that but be modern at the same time.

After wandering around the Cath Kidston store, lusting after ALL the furniture, I saw a painted chair that had been scuffed to make it look worn. I was in love. So here's our attempts at the 'worn-look', I'm loving my new-ish home.

For some reason I didn't manage to get a before photo here, but these used to be children's furniture, they were all scuffed and worn and we were going to throw them out. But they now have a new lease of life! (The bedside table does have door knobs now!).

This is probably my favourite, this painting the rocking chair has lightened the room so much. Plus everyone needs a rocking chair in their life!

Finally the bookcase, this was hideous before we painted it. Well not hideous, but just not 'us'. Now it fits perfectly in our living room.

I'm no expert on DIY and the paint might all chip off over time, but that's the fun of it! We also had a lot of fun painting and getting inspiration from window shopping. Next is a TV cabinet..I will keep you posted.

Have you got any DIY tips?

Katie xx

Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Elephants never forget.

Wow, how is it Wednesday already? February is flying. I noticed the nights getting lighter, which is what I love most about the Spring time. The SS collections are slowly arriving in the shops too, I can't wait to purchase a new Summer wardrobe. But the holiday wear is depressing, as I have no time/money to take a trip abroad this year, fingers crossed we get some sunshine in England.

Here are my latest purchases, I got quite a few bargains in Primark last week:

Dress £13//Blazer £15//Dress £5 (sale)//Boots £6 (sale)//Scarf £3
All Primark

I am so pleased with these purchases, especially the sale items, I have been lusting after that dress for months because it is just the most perfect raspberry colour but couldn't bring myself to buy it full price as I couldn't find an excuse to wear it. But who needs an excuse for £5?! I really love the vibrant colour of the blue dress too, which will look perfect with a tan in the summer. My favourite buy is the blazer, this is bang on trend plus it has elephants on, perfection in a jacket.

This is a dress I bought a few weeks ago, and have pretty much lived in since. This is so cute with boots and my fur coat, but also looks amazing with heels. I dressed up a bit with a waisted belt and a scarf. This was from a random shop in Bolton but I've seen a few about and I'm pretty sure you could get hold of one on Ebay. It was priced at £13.99, I've defiantly had my moneys worth!

Finally, I hope everyone had a fab Valentine's day whether you were celebrating or not! We don't usually celebrate but I was surprised with a night away in North Wales and a day at Chester zoo! It was just what we needed to spend some quality time together, even if there was an lion or two!

Did you have a romantic day?

Much Love

Katie xx

All photos are copywrite to Katie Atkinson
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