Friday, 10 August 2018

Friday Favourites 285..

FF285 (1)
001 // 002 003 // 004 // 005

More homeware wishes this week, since moving day is merely days away now, and it still feels as though we're in need of so many things. Argh! Here are a few of the bits and pieces which have made it onto my wishlist over the past week or so.. 

001: I wish I'd snapped these up as soon as they hit the clearance area of the Cult website, as these super stools seem to have sold out in this colour now. I'll be keeping an eye out for something similar though, in order that we can use the kitchen as a sort of breakfasting area, too. 

002: Because one can never have enough pink champagne flutes. I'm pretty sure I can sneak these into my basket at IKEA without anyone noticing, since we've got a list as long as our arms of things we need from there anyway. 

003: This lamp has been saved in my favourites since I spied it in my local store - I love the contrast between the glass base and the fabulously bright shade. I'm not sure where it would go, but I'm sure I could find a space for it. 

004: This pendant light, I'm definitely sure would go in the dressing room. I'm going for a kind of vintage Hollywood feel, I think. 

005: I adore this rocking chair - the shape, the colour. It would go very nicely with so much of our colour scheme and furniture. Wanty want.

Anything nice caught your eye, lately?

Wednesday, 8 August 2018

Join my terracotta army..


A good few weeks ago now, I met up with my fellow #THFC girls and we spent a weekend in Liverpool, soaking up as much culture as we could squeeze into 48 hours. 


We booked early tickets for the Sunday morning to see the Terracotta Army exhibit at the World Museum. Running until the end of October, this had lots of information about the army, ancient China and how the figures came about, as well as some of the actual figures themselves. 


The rooms containing the displays were large and there was a lot of information, but also a lot of space so that it was easy to stop and read things at your own pace, without feeling like you were being herded through like cattle. 


I particularly liked the smaller clay models showing the assumed production line - putting heads onto horses and figures. 


When we'd made it through the exhibition (and the gift shop), we had a wander around the rest of the museum, and this was my favourite find. I'm being taught more and more about clocks and pretty clockwork designs by my FiL who takes a great interest in these things and this struck me as being really pretty. I adore the fact that the dial behind the face also acts as a barometer - similar in fact to the beautiful Bramwell Brown clock which I've got my eye on for the new house. 

Tuesday, 7 August 2018

Tuesday Titles 160..

Ivy Abe
Ivy and Abe: Elizabeth Enfield

Imagine getting that second chance that people so often wish they'd been given? The chance to put things right. That big break. An opportunity to do things differently, choose the other path, seize that day. What would you change? 

Ivy and Abe get to do just that. Childhood sweethearts who ended up spending decades apart, a chance encounter has them finding one another in later life and they soon wish to make up for lost time. 

But, when their happy ending is cut short, all is not lost for Ivy and Abe. What if they could go back and live their story again? We dive in and out of their lives, picking up at different periods along the way; sometimes one or other is married, sometimes not. Were Ivy and Abe always destined to be together in the end?

I loved the concept of this book. It reminded me of one of my favourite films as a teen - Sliding Doors. That one moment being the deciding factor and allowing you to relive the "what may have been" option. We are presented with many alternative stories, possibilities and what could have happened with them. 

Like I say, I enjoyed the concept. It's execution, however, fell a little flat for me. I don't know whether this is because our first encounter with Abe and Ivy is just so brief that I didn't get much of a sense of their characters, so didn't feel that connected to them, or whether I just wasn't that interested in their story, but I found myself getting a little lost between all of the different story reruns. 

Have you read this? What did you think? 

Friday, 3 August 2018

Friday Favourites 284: Mermaids!

001 // 002 // 003
004 // 005 // 006
007 // 008 // 009

Even though the weather seems to be playing us for a fool this week, I've been lusting after the seaside. A day trip or a holiday, I'm just longing to be by the sea as I always find it helps me to relax. I think my mermaid-y wishes must've had an effect on this week's wishlist to be a mermaid!

001 and 003: One of Irregular Choice's most recent offerings; these mermaid print shoes and bag form part of their newest collection,which contains star-shaped heels. I sort of love the fact that they're moving away from their usual lucite round heel, or crazy character shape heel, and really like the star shape on the otherwise regular heel. Pretty! 

002: Miss L'Fire always come up with adorable details, but this season they seem to have levelled up. The heels on this pair of sandals are a lot lower than I'd usually opt for, but they are also in the shape of a fish, so I'd be prepared to make an exception. Perfect holiday shoes? 

004 and 006: Want something a little more demure, but still with a bit of a beach-y, mermaid-y feel? I love the scalloped fronts on this pretty pair of Chie Mihara Mary Janes. And the glittery shimmer of these Nick of Time heels would be the perfect way to finish off any summer outfit.

007: If you want something nautical but a little more comfortable for day trips, or walking through the sand dunes, perhaps a pair of flat sandals. These Miss L'Fire ones feature a cute little sailboat design.

008: I cannot tell you how excited I was to see that these Carpe Diem heels were being re-released. I bought mine several years ago, but everytime I wear them I get several requests asking where they can be bought. They've also brought a flat version out, too!

009: Finally, what could be more inkeeping with the mermaid theme than a heel shaped like an actual mermaid? I do really like these as concept heels go. Pretty cute. 

Feeling the mermaid vibes lately?

Tuesday, 31 July 2018

Tuesday Titles 159..

The weeks seem to be performing that odd trick once again - vacillating between zipping by and suddenly it's been a week since I last posted anything, whilst also feeling like a hundred years since something which only happened last week. I think that the endless waiting and packing phase which I'm going through at the moment, coupled with the hope that I can get everything moved and sorted before a little mini-break at the end of the month has been throwing things all out of kilter.

But anyhow. I read some books and had some thoughts. See here:

Everything is Lies
Everything Is Lies: Helen Callaghan
No-one is who you think they are.
Sophia's parents lead quiet, ordinary lives. At least that is what she's always believed.
Everyone has secrets.
Until the day she arrives at her childhood home to find a house ringing with silence. Her mother hanging from a tree. Her father lying in a pool of his own blood, near to death.
Especially those closest to you.
The police are convinced it is an attempted murder-suicide. But Sophia is sure that the woman who brought her up isn't a killer. With her father in a come, it is up to Sophia to clear her mother's name. To do this she needs to delve deep into her family's past - a past full of dark secrets she never suspected were there . . .
I have to say, although it took me a couple of chapters to get stuck into Everything Is Lies, I was very soon hooked. When Sophia's parents are found in their garden - her mother dead and her father badly injured, naturally she wants to understand exactly how it came to this. 
The more Sophia searches through their past, the more she begins to wish she hadn't been so curious. Uncovering a notebook, written by her mother, Sophia is transported back to the days when her mother was a university student and fell in with a crowd of unsavoury characters. Could her past have caught up with her after all these years? 
I've been finding that I'm enjoying the psychological thriller genre more and more lately and I liked the twist at the end, even though I'd pretty much figured it out already. 

How to Stop Time
How to Stop Time: Matt Haig

This was the second of the books from my recent book swap parcel (more about that here) and I'd heard a little about it. Everyone I've spoken to or heard from who has read this book has adored it - apparently there is just no other possible view. As with most highly praised titles, I was a little skeptical. 

We meet our hero, Tom Hazard. On the surface, a regular 41 year old history teacher, but in actual fact, his life has been a lot longer than that. Owing to a rare condition, his lifetime goes a lot slower than the norm, so Tom has lived through several centuries and rubbed shoulders with all kinds of historical figures - working in the theatre with Shakespeare being a particularly noteworthy highlight. 
His aim is to go through his life without anyone discovering his secret and without letting the pain of loss (of various loved ones over the years) consume him entirely. 

Honestly, I liked the concept here but am not entirely sure why it receives *such* hype. Sure, it teaches you a lovely little lesson about leaving your mark on the universe, I guess. Perhaps I'm missing something huge. 

Have you read either of these and do you have any thoughts? 

Tuesday, 24 July 2018

Tuesday Titles 158..

Oof. It feels like a rather long time since I sat down with a book and just allowed myself time to read. My evenings and weekends have been filled with charity shop runs, packing up boxes and clearing out my possessions, in between my other commitments, so enjoying a good book has been something which had to give. Thankfully, I've had a little time this weekend to get caught up on the pile and have a couple of reviews..

Not Thomas
Not Thomas - Sara Gethin

I picked this up from a lending library shelf in a community hall I was running an event in a couple of weekends ago as the blurb intrigued me and I got stuck right in. Told from the perspective of Tomos, a five year old boy whose mother is suggested to be a drug addict, it's a heart-wrenching look at the kind of life which can become the norm for children. His teachers fear for Tomos' safety when the school holidays come around and his mother puts him to bed and removes the ladder so that he has no choice but to stay put. Can they ensure his safety without risking him being sent away? 

I found this one a little tough to read in places, as whilst Tomos' understanding of certain events fell a little short, it was clear was clear what was going on. Give it a whirl if you're not likely to find issues such as child neglect, social care and domestic violence too much of a trigger.

Becky Sharp
The Rise and Fall of Becky Sharp - Sarra Manning 

Oh, I do love a good Sarra Manning. She seems to have this way with words and characters where she blends them into an enticing tale. And her newest offering seems not to have fallen far from the proverbial tree. 

Becky Sharp becomes a household name after appearing on a reality TV show and what follows is basically a recipe for how to manipulate your way into the public eye through being a "celebrity". She befriends various (mostly) unsavoury characters with the intention of using them to get exactly what she wants from life. 

Honestly, Becky isn't particularly likeable - in fact, it's easy to loathe her - and if I'm honest there wasn't a character in this book which I liked at all, but that's not to say that I didn't enjoy the book. In fact, I'd have been happy to keep reading all the way to the end without a break. And whilst I hate to admit it, I was probably a little bit in awe of the odious Becky and her courage and determination. I think they refer to it as "grit" in more trendy circles. 

A strong recommendation from me - this one's out in September, but the link will take you to the pre-order page on Amazon.

Friday, 20 July 2018

Friday Favourites 283..

FF283 collage
001 // 002 // 003 // 004

Oh hai. Remember me?! No, I don't know whether I do, either. But, after months of what seemed like endless....waiting, we finally seem to have had some progress with the house move and suddenly things are happening. And it's exciting yet terrifying in equal measure. So, I'm doing what I do best in situations such as these and am turning to the internet for some decorating inspirations, whilst also trying to decide on things like how soon to order a fridge in order that we have it in time for moving, but not too long in advance that we have to find somewhere to store it. Argh!

Anyhow, here are just a few of the things which I've decided on so far.

001: This week I discovered Iconic Lights and the timing couldn't have been more perfect, tbh. They have some lovely designs and seem very reasonably priced. I've decided on this light fitting to go above the dining room table - the pale blue is perfect.

002: Ever since spying them over on Erica's feed, I've been obsessed with Bramwell Brown's weather clocks. Not only do they tell you the time but also the weather, and they're mechanically animated to show you what meteorological goings-on you can expect. I absolutely adore their designs and can't wait to hang one in pride of place - probably in the kitchen.

003: A couple of weeks back, we went to Ikea for a little wander around (he went for the meatballs, I went for two picture frames) and to gather some inspiration. I've been a little stuck on what sofas I want in the living room and was hoping I'd see something which would fit in with everything else we have planned. Alas not a sofa exactly, but I'm going to find a space for this swivelly armchair. Soooo comfy.

004: I think that with this range, Oliver Bonas have pretty much climbed into my brain and come out with the most perfect combination of shelf units and desks. Seriously, I want them all! I'm starting with the beautiful Scarlett bookcase and we'll see where things go from there...

Do you have any home decor tips for me, or know of any homewares providers which I just have to check out? I'm already planning on a trip to Sostrene Greene next time I'm in Chester as their stuff is just amazing.