Friday, 28 February 2014

OOTD | Fade to Black

 Shirt Evil Twin via DollsKill / Riding Pants American Apparel / Holographic Backpack UNIF via DollsKill / Watch Seiko / Shoes Dr Martens 1461

Hi lovelies! I feel like I have had a big shop in ages, but as it happens all the items I'm wearing above are fairly new. The Riding Pants were a bit of an investment from American Apparel, but I'm pleased to say they were worth the money. Super high waisted and surprisingly exceptionally comfortable. I find the finish of the pants makes them a lot easier to style than the Disco Pants. My only gripe is the lack of pockets, although I don't know where they would have fit them. 

Tuesday, 25 February 2014

Playlist | Don't Argue and Fight

I really enjoy making playlists at the moment. I find that sometimes I get stuck into albums and obsess over them so much that I find myself hearing similarities in themes, lyrics and melodic patterns. Again, I am totally in love with my subscription to Spotify because not only does it let offer suggestions that sound like my current musical obsessions it also lets me look up musicians that I might have removed from the music collection on my iPhone. When suddenly reminded of old favourite artists by similar tunes, voices and lyrics it is so satisfying to be able to listen to their whole discography at the click of a button.

This playlist is a combination of love and new discoveries. My current obsessions are fairly mystic in their sounds - London Grammar and Timber Timbre - which both reminded my ears of old loves Bertie Blackman and Emiliana Torrini.

This music is great for lazy nights in painting your nails and doing lots of nothing. I also find it quite nice to listen to first thing in the morning whilst dressing and doing my makeup. 

Erin xx

Monday, 24 February 2014

Review | NYX Eyebrow Cake Powder

Hi lovelies! I apologise for showing you such a well loved product but I completely forgot to take photos of this one before getting stuck into using. I discovered filling in my brows relatively late in the game. Looking back on photos of myself pre-brow now causes me to cringe slightly. 

Like lipsticks I am a bit of a hoarder when it comes to brow products, I tend to switch up what I use based on how much time I have and how much other makeup I am wearing. I always fill in my brows even if I am wearing no other makeup. However with the NYX eyebrow cake I tend to prefer wearing it when I have other makeup on my face. My preferred look recently has been a simple matte eyeshadow, strong brows and a strong lip. 

I originally bought this product on a whim, I was sceptical when it arrived that, although labelled as blonde, the colours would be a much too much. I was pleasantly surprised though. First I run the clear wax over my brows with the angled brush included. This has been great during the humid summer in Brisbane as it provides a base for the powder to stick to. It also keeps my unruly brows in place. 

I then run a mix of the two colours, although I tend to favour the upper colour through my brows with my own angled brush. After a quick brush through with a spoolie I am all done. I find the colour lasts until I am ready to take it off at the end of a long day. 

If you enjoy a well defined brow I would highly recommend this little kit, it makes travelling so simple as well. It is available from selected Target stores in Australia or online here for only $9.95. 

What are your favourite brow products?

Jess x 

Sunday, 23 February 2014

DIY | Tie Dye

You may recall in my last post that I mentioned I had been thrifting recently. Well here is a little more of what I managed to find on that particular journey and what I did with them. For a while now, my gal pal Ruby had been trying to organise an afternoon of tie dying, so whilst we thrifted we looked for white cotton garments to use as our canvas. That afternoon we took to my backyard and tried our hands at the funky art that is tie dye. 

white fabric to dye (natural fabrics like cotton, linen and rayon work best)
Tie Dye Kit  (we used one from Jacquard but any of similar description will suffice)
rubber gloves
rubber bands
disposable plastic sheet (we used a plastic party table cloth)
large bucket (for soda ash)
plastic bags and/or cling wrap

Now most of the steps you will find in the Tie Dye kit that you purchase. They provide you with exact measurements for the specific products you use so I won't go into too much detail with that.

First step is to dissolve the soda ash power in tepid water in a large container. Soak all the garments you wish to dye in this water for about 20 minutes (again, instructions may differ). During this time it is best to decide how you want your item to look; many kits will have several different designs and instructions for you to follow. I chose 'the brain' design for both of my items because this is my first attempt and I wasn't fussed with specific designs to begin with. 

After your items have soaked, lay them on the plastic sheet and contort into the shape you desire. Mine involved scrunching the fabric with my hands until it resembled a brain shape. Continue the process by securing the item with rubber bands. The bands will hold the item but also semi-protect those lines from soaking in the dye. You can see in the pictures above that Ruby's socks are covered in bands in specific ways where as mine are a lot more random. 

You then proceed to cover your items in dye. Again, I wasn't fussed with specific designs and went a bit crazy with whatever colour I felt like. I was aiming for a bit of a crazy colour and pattern design with just the desire to have a shirt that looked tie dyed. Ruby, more experienced, used specific colours on specific sections of her items. Both are acceptable and both turn out great. There is no wrong way to dye and they all end up looking pretty cool.

Once all your items are shaped and covered in dye, place in a plastic bag or wrap in cling wrap and leave for 12 - 24 hours. 

Take items out of plastic, undo the rubber bands and hang up to dry. Once dry, wash individually in a warm water and hang up to try again. Warm water helps colours to stain the fabric (thats why you normally rinse stained clothes in cold water). 

Once dry your items are done! You should have some pretty snazzy looking tie dyed garments. Again, whatever tie dye kit you have purchased may have different instructions so feel free to follow those against these but this is what worked for me. The most important thing to remember is that there are no rules and even mistakes will turn out looking awesome. 

Have fun and happy dyeing! 
Erin xx

Friday, 21 February 2014

Recipe | Weekday Pasta

 Hi lovelies! I haven't talked about it much on the blog, but I have a very active job. What with running up and down stairs and long shifts I've been finding I need quite a bit of fuel to get me through the day. I've been experimenting with pasta recipes that are quick to make on a weeknight and then take the leftovers to work the next day. 

Tuesday, 18 February 2014

At Home | Jewellery Organisation

I spent my most recent Saturday partaking in one of my favourite past times; scouring the plethora of Op shops that Brisbane's bayside has to offer. I wasn't really hunting for anything particular but I did stumble across some great finds. Two of those finds have been most useful in creating a little more order in my chaotic hoarder life. 

The first is a small decorative bowl, something one can never have enough of (says the thrift hoarder). Initially, I had planned to use this bowl to collect loose change (as a saving mechanism) but I've never been the kind of person to take the loose change out of their purse - my coin purse is just too damn cute! The usefulness of the second item really cemented that that sky blue bowl would be the perfect accompaniment for openly storing my often-worn jewellery. 

The second item is, surprise surprise, a beautiful glass ring dish. My dear friend Ruby found this first but after having second thoughts she willingly relinquished the $2 beauty to me. As most of my rings and earrings are sterling silver or very subdued shades I knew that they would sit amongst the reflections of the glass in beautifully. It is also encouraging me to change my earring more often as they are so much more accessible to me during day-to-day grooming at my dresser. 

This isn't all I found in my adventure but I will be sure to share the rest with you at a later date. How do you organise your everyday jewellery? 

Erin xx

Monday, 17 February 2014

Shopping | Buying on eBay

Hi lovelies! When you first start shopping on eBay it can be a little intimidating. You've no doubt heard many a horror story of goods never arriving, arriving broken or banking details being stolen. I am an avid eBay shopper and I promise it isn't a scary place. Here are my tips for shopping on the site. 

1. Refine your search
If you aren't looking for an exact item a search on eBay can be quite daunting. I highly recommend refining your search by using the categories in the left side bar. When shopping for vintage clothing on eBay I tend to place a limit on price, as well as searching only for specific prices. It can also be a good idea to limit your search results to items listed in your own country. This cuts down hugely on shipping and customs costs. 

2. Always pay via PayPal
Do you have a PayPal account? If not I highly recommend getting one. Not only does it simplify all transactions, but it also gives you lots of extra safety guards. For one your bank account or credit card information does not get released to the seller. Also if you happen to run into any issues with the item i.e. it's faulty, counterfeit etc you are able to raise a claim through PayPal and get the issue resolved quickly and easily. 

For example I once purchased a necklace that arrived broken. After the seller did not respond to eBay messages I raised a PayPal claim and the money was refunded to me within days. 

3. Check shipping costs
Often the item with the lowest price may not work out to be the cheapest once you factor in the cost of shipping. Especially when getting items shipped to Australia the cost can work to be almost as much as the item you're buying. 

When I am searching for a specific item I prefer to sort the search results by lowest price (including shipping). This makes sure that I am getting the best deal overall. 

4. Bidding on Items
When bidding on an item with a long auction time (7 to 10 days) it's always best to save the item and come back to bid on it on the final day of sale. By bidding at the start of the auction you only drive up the price you have to pay at the end of the 7 days.

It's easy to get excited and end up spending more on an item than originally intended. I tend to treat eBay like thrifting, if the clothing is too expensive then it wasn't meant to be. Plus with all the items listed daily something similar is bound to come up again. 

5. Common Sense
If an item seems too good a deal to be true, then it probably is. Back when I first started shopping online I was ecstatic to find a set of Mac brushes for less than $20 on eBay. Now of course that price would ring alarm bells, but my 18 year old self got sucked in and stuck with a bunch of knock off brushes. My advice would always be to read the description of items carefully. 

If you're ever in doubt of an item then it's a great idea to check out the seller's feedback. With many of the larger stores on eBay you're unlucky to experience a problem, but when it comes to individual sellers I always make sure to check.

So those are my five tips for a successful shopping trip on eBay. I'll probably follow this up with a post with tips for selling on eBay as that is a process I found very daunting initially. 

Have you got any tips to add?

Jess x

Sunday, 16 February 2014

Life | Local Farmers Markets

In step with one of Jess' recent posts, and life choices, I too have been lugging my camera around with me more often in hope of capturing more interesting parts of my life. One of my favourite ways to buy my fruit and vegetables is to head off early in the morning on a Sunday and pick up fresh bargains at my local farmers markets. 

My local markets are held at The Mount Gravatt Show Grounds and are super close but always really fruitful; pun definitely intended. These particular markets are half fresh food and half flea markets. 

I really enjoy shopping from local markets because the quality of the food is great but also a lot cheaper. I am also a big believer in shopping from the source and try to avoid buying from big grocery suppliers as much as possible. The more money we can keep in small businesses, like those as farmers markets, the better. 

Obviously, as a keen thrifter I am also shamefully pulled in by the flea markets where you can find a plethora of random goodness as well. 

If you're anywhere on the south-east side of Brisbane I would recommend heading down one Sunday morning. They aren't the biggest markets but they definitely have everything you need to avoid the hustle and bustle of the commercial supermarkets. And if you're elsewhere, check out your local markets - I can guarantee you won't regret it. 

Erin xx

Friday, 14 February 2014

Review | Lime Crime Velveteen in 'Pink Velvet'

 Lime Crime Velvetine in 'Pink Velvet'

Hi lovelies! Recently I picked up the new shade from Lime Crime's Velveteen Range. I've really enjoyed the other two shades from the range and wanted to see if the new shade matched my expectations.

Wednesday, 12 February 2014

OOTD | Pastel Bells and Cockle Shells

Pastel Shift Dress - Box Vintage / Cream Over-shirt - thrifted / Black Riding Boots - Greg Grant Saddlery

Another quick outfit post from me today, lovelies. I've really been working my way through my retro summer dresses recently. This is another oldie but a goodie and I thought it was about time it featured on the blog. As one of the first dresses I purchased from Box Vintage this definitely saw the beginning and blossoming of my love affair with vintage clothing. 

If you look back to the last outfit I posted my obsession with miniature floral patterns will be blindingly evident. I love how petals work to fit in with each other and the complimentary colour selection in the fabric. I am also fairly partial to the cute button details on the shoulders. 

The cream over-shirt is a staple also yet to feature on the blog. We know I love over-shirts and this was about $1 from a thrift-shop; paying more for some simple and easy to find basics is something I have trouble justifying. 

Thats all for today, hope you're all having a good week!

Erin xx

Monday, 10 February 2014

OOTD | Just In

Shirt Thrifted / Shorts American Apparel / Lips Lime Crime Velveteen in 'Pink Velvet' / Shoes UNIF Gosh Boots

Hi lovelies! So for the past few years I have been very loyal to a pair of high waisted shorts from American Apparel. The number of times I have worn those shorts more than justified the price. 


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