Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Wishing for the sun

This is a different sort of post for me.. Food is something I've never blogged about before but considering how much I manage to scoff every day I thought it was time I shared one of my recipes! This is something I just made up with what was in the cupboards at the time, so I'm sure you could adjust it to fit what you've got lying around! It's Moroccan style(ish) lamb!

4 lamb chops
2 teaspoon paprika

2 teaspoon cumin powder
pinch or two cumin seeds
2 teaspoon chilli powder
3 teaspoons harissa paste
1 garlic clove
2 teaspoon tumeric
pinch saffron (totally optional!)

It's so simple, honestly, so easy but so good!

  • Just bung the paprika, cumin powder, chilli powder, harissa paste, tumeric, salt and pepper into a small bowl and add a little oil at a time until it makes a paste
  • Rub the paste all over the lamb (you should have about half left over) and then place into a sandwich bag
  • Slice the garlic and add to the bowl, along with the cumin seeds and saffron
  • Add enough oil to make a kind of marinade-y consistency and add this to the bag of lamb
  • Make sure the lamb is all covered with the marinade, seal the bags and leave in the fridge for as long as you can (I left mine for about 3 hours because I decided half way through the day that I felt like cooking!)
  • To cook them, I just removed them from the bags and placed directly into dry a non-stick frying pan - the oil from the marinade, along with the fat from the lamb itself will be enough to ensure it doesn't stick/burn etc, so you don't need to add any more!
  • Cook on a low/med heat for around 5-7 minutes until you get the slight burnt (but not..obviously..) look and serve with couscous and veg

I hope this recipe made sense and I'd love to know if you made it or something similar!

Evie x

Monday, 17 December 2012

It's Christmaaaaaas: The Winterlicious Tag

1) Favourite Winter Nail Polish?
Glitter is an absolute must for me at this time of year, so for the past two months (I know...) my nails have been adorned with sparkle. Currently I'm wearing Ciate 'My Fair Lady', which is a really pale pinky nude, along with a gold glitter tip. The glitter I used was GLITTER NAME Barry M - love it! This is quite reserved for me, before this I went to the extreme and layered my red nails with two, yep.. two, glitters both from Barry M - GLITTER NAME, which is a mixture of blue, green and red glitter, and GLITTER NAME, which is a plain gold. Well, if you cant go OTT at Christmas, when can you?!

2) Favourite Winter lip product?
My lips get pretty dry in the winter, and the fact that I have the horrible habit of biting my lips doesn't help at all, booo! Because of this I'm never more than a metre away from some sort of lip balm, my favourite at the moment being Blistex NAME. I've read a tonne of positive comments about the NAME, and so might have to make a cheeky purchase when I get paid...

3) Most worn Winter clothing piece?
Without a doubt my leather jacket is my most worn item. I bought it about a month ago from Topshop and have literally worn it every time I've left the house since then! It really keeps me warm and the (detachable) fur collar adds extra warmth which is always welcome in the freezing Scottish weather! Sometimes you see people in leather jackets which are shiny and so cheap looking, but this doesn't fall into that category at all and the last thing it looks is cheap, although it was an absolute steal at £58! You.Need.One.

4) Most worn Winter accessory?
To be honest my most worn item is a bit boring.. I was in H&M looking around the accessories section and saw  a scarf that was the most gorgeous deep red/burgundy colour, and of course picked it up straight away! At only £7.99 it's a really affordable piece in a shade that is everywhere at the moment! I went in to work the other day and my manager was like 'do you know that your scarf and top are the same colour?..' Awks. 

5) Favourite winter scent/candle?
For me, Yankee Candle takes the crown every season so it's a no brainer that during the festive period it's the same. I have 3 scents on rotation this year. First I have Clean Cotton, which is an all year favourite for me. It smells so fresh and gives your whole room the feeling of clean bed sheets. Cranberry Ice is another which I have been loving this winter - it's not too intense, instead gives a sweet cranberry scent without the headache that comes along with some other strongly scented candles. Finally, Red Berry and Cedar has been taking pride of place in my burner the past few days. It smells gorgeous, it's one of those which is quite subtle but when you leave and re-enter the room the smell hits you and it's just.. Christmas!

6) All time favourite Christmas/Holiday movie?
It's difficult to pick just one.. I'm going to have to cheat and write a list! Elf is becoming a classic for out generation, and it's definitely one of my favourites! I also love the Grinch, it's so funny! I love anything Dr Zeuss so it's a winner for me! The Muppets Christmas Carol is one to get you in the festive spirit, along with Miracle on 34th Street which reminds me of the last day before Christmas at primary school.

7) Favourite Winter beverage?
Unpopular opinion or not, I prefer Costa so Starbucks, and it's a Costa drink which is my favourite winter beverage this year. Their Frosted Mint Hot Chocolate is b-e-a-utiful. Mint chocolate is my favourite so a warm winter version ticks all the boxes for me. The mint isn't overpowering but it's definitely there - I highly suggest you try this if you haven't already!

8) Favourite Christmas/Holiday song?
Aaah so hard to pick! Obviously The Fairytale of New York is near the top of my list, but they're all (with a few exceptions) so good! I love the Michael Buble Christmas CD too... Favourite song questions are always hard! 

9) What is your favourite Christmas Decoration this year?
I've not actually been home to see the decorations yet.. My favourite decorations around Edinburgh are on the pillars at the Dome on George Street. So gorgeous and even though they're massive they're still quite subtle and pretty.

10) Favourite Holiday food/treat?
I think Christmas Dinner is my favourite meal of the year.. Extreme Sunday roast! Pigs in Blankets are amazing! (I'm not sure if they're called that everywhere? Basically sausages wrapped in bacon haha!) I honestly cant think of anything to top a Christmas dinner, not even including the extras like cheese etc. Literally just the plate of the best roast you have all year!

11) What's at the top of your Christmas list?
I've been boring this year and just asked for money.. I couldn't think of anything that I really wanted as it was my birthday in October so I don't really need anything right now :( So un-Christmassy I know.

12) What are your plans for the holidays this year?
I'm working Christmas Eve, but get an early finish at 4.30 so I'll drive back home straight from work, can't wait! I'm having Christmas at my Mum's house along with my brother and Grandparents. I'll pick them up on Christmas Morning and they'll spend the day with us before I drop them off again at night. Unfortunately I'm working on Boxing Day too, so it's back up to Edinburgh for me early on the 26th which is a bit of a bummer.. I'm secretly hoping it snows loads over night so I get stuck at my mum's and can't make it for work... Fingers Crossed!

I hope you all have an amazing Christmas and New Year. What's top of your Christmas list this year?

Evie x

All these photos are taken from my Instagram, follow me if you like @evieconnor

Monday, 26 November 2012

You And I We're Gonna Live Forever

Excuse my fat foot.. This was a couple of days after it was done so was pretty swollen!

I got my tattoo, woo! I was so excited to get it done, I've wanted to get for 3 years so I knew it was something that I wouldn't regret. This post is just going to be a breakdown of the meaning and the actual process of getting the tattoo done. Enjoy!

This tattoo is personal and close to my heart - I chose a feather to symbolise the angel feathers which are said to be seen after someone dies. My uncle died almost four years ago and I knew I wanted to get something to represent him, as he was honestly the nicest man you could ever meet. We were very close, and I trusted and adored him more than my dad if I'm honest. He was only 31 so the thought of losing him had entered no one's head. He loved music, Oasis and The Beatles being his two favourites, but he could appreciate all types of music and respected anyone who could sing or play an instrument.
I wasn't sure if I wanted to get a lyric to represent him, but in the end I couldn't pick one that didn't sound too cheesy, and so the feather was definitely the best option.

I asked my uncle's close friend if he wanted to do the tattoo, as I knew it would mean a lot to him, and it also made it more personal for me rather than having a stranger who didn't know him do it.
I showed him a picture of a similar feather, although he changed it slightly as he didn't want to so an exact copy of someone else's work. He drew two marks on my foot - the start and the end points - and then did the tattoo freehand, with the exception of a few areas which he drew guidelines to make sure it was even.
It took an hour and a half, because there is no shading at all on this tattoo, it is made up of hundreds of lines but I feel that this means that it looks a lot more realistic than a simple outline and shading. I did bleed a little after about an hour, but that's nothing to worry about!
After this he put on a layer of Bepanthen, and then wrapped it in cling film to stop any dirt getting into it and to ensure it wasn't irritated by my shoes (I was wearing vans.. should have probably worn dolly shoes..)
I'm really pleased with how he did it, it was hygienically done and I can't fault it at all.

After Care
After a couple of hours I removed the cling film and let the air get to it. My foot had swollen quite a bit and to walking was uncomfortable for the first 2-3 days, but it wasn't anything to cry about. Each person I speak to about tattoo after care seems to have done something different, but for me it was simple. I cleaned it with water (no soap) every morning and every night, each time followed by a thin layer of Bepanthen for two weeks. It has healed really well and I would recommend this method to anyone who was wondering about tattoo after care, although of course listen to what the artist says as after all, it's their job!

Because it's on my foot, and everyone who I had spoken to about it said that the foot is one of the sorest places to get tattooed, I was pretty anxious. However when I was in getting ready to have it done, I wasn't nervous at all and the excitement of finally getting the tattoo took over. I have a high pain threshold, but even if I didn't I don't think that it would be too bad. I would say that this tattoo was a 8/10, it was sore yes, but it was a bearable pain that after a while just got to the stage where it was annoying and I waned it to stop because it was getting on my nerves rather than because it was painful. 
I've heard that the outline is the worst part, and the shading is much less painful however I don't know if this is true as my tattoo has no shading.

All in all I'm SO pleased with it, it's exactly what I wanted and I'm now looking at what I want to get next.. I've got a few ideas which may be appearing on me in the future! I think that if you want to get a tattoo and are worried about the pain, then don't be! Yes it hurts but it stops immediately and it's so worth it when it's healed and looking sweeeeet! Seriously though don't let the thought of the pain put you off if it's something that you want to do!

Have you got a tattoo? How did you find the experience?
Are any of you thinking of getting a tattoo?

Evie x

Monday, 18 June 2012

Pastels and Brights

Coral and Tangerine have shown as quite similar in these photos, in actual fact Coral is a lot more pinky, and Tangerine is a true bright orange!
Lemon Ice Cream is a lot paler in real life than it looks above, sorry for the misleading photo!
It's that time of year when we like to revamp our nails. Winter's darker shades take a back seat and leave it to Summer's brights to bring the party! I've written before that Barry M is my favourite brand of 'affordable' nail polish because, despite the long-ish drying time, the range of colours is amazing - 69 shades! Without counting I'd say I have around 20 Barry M polishes, and can't recommend them enough! With a wide range of both pastel and bright colours, Barry M have done really well to include shades that will appeal to everyone. I have chosen a selection of seven colours that I will be wearing this summer and taking away with me next month!
It seems like some people have had trouble trying to find Peach Melba, with many outlets being sold out. As you can see from my usage, I bought this shade a while ago (I want to say last year?) so thankfully I didn't have that problem.
Of course there are many more summer colours to choose from, and I seriously recommend you get your mitts on some if you haven't already because with the weather we're having at the moment any attempt to brighten it up is welcome. (And necessary!) I can see myself going crazy and wearing all the pastel shades at once, one on each nail along with Eyeko's Rain Polish - a pastel blue! 

What colours are you wearing on your nails at the moment? Are you more of a bright or pastel kinda gal?

Evie x

Saturday, 16 June 2012

Wishlist #1 - Summer Holiday

1. Benefit Sun Beam - I need to get me some of this! Recently I've been hearing so much about this highlighter - whether it be on Blogger, YouTube or Twitter - and it's all been good. It looks like the perfect highlighter for when my skin has a tan, and I'm seriously tempted to buy it before I go on holiday next month!
2. Essie, Sand Tropez - This has to be the most perfect colour ever. Again, I'm tempted to buy this simply because it will accentuate a tan! So pretty and summery!
3. Topshop Libertine Wedges -  I've been looking for a pair of wedges like this for a while. I love the heel, it's kind of a heel/wedge hybrid, quirky and interesting! I think they would look amazing with highwaisted floral shorts and a loose white vest!
4. MAC Blossom Culture Lipstick - Part of the Perennial Pinks collection, this is my favoured colour of the two Sheen Supreme Lipsticks. MAC describe it as a 'soft pink with pearl' and I think it's such a beautiful colour.
5. River Island Yellow Digital Print Maxi Skirt - This is such a fun vibrant piece that would look gorgeous paired with a white vest and gold jewellery. I'm also after a black maxi skirt but this is definitely on my wishlist for this holiday! I'm just a bit worried that such a bold print might swamp my 5'1 frame, although that wont stop me trying it on!

What does your wishlist currently consist of? Any items similar to mine? Are you going away this summer?
Evie x

Saturday, 5 May 2012

Fake vs. Real MAC Lipsticks

MAC is one of those brands whose products you treasure like they were your children, and get butterflies of excitement when swatching and buying new items to add to your collection, for me anyway! Recently, one of my friends bought what she thought was a MAC Viva Glam Gaga lipstick from eBay, something which I would never recommend. She was so looking forward to it arriving, however as soon as she opened the package she could see that it was not what she'd hoped she would receive. Fake makeup is all over eBay, so this post is basically going to give you NUMBER basic point to let you know if you've bought a fake MAC lipstick. To demonstrate the differences I have used a fake Viva Glam Gaga and a real Angel lipstick.

Firstly, the sticker on the bottom is completely different. As you can see, the real lipstick on the right clearly displays the name and finish, (Angel, frost) whereas the fake fails to give a name at all! The text around the edge of the sticker is correct, however it is written in a different font which is much harder to read, and is missing the recycling symbol. Schoolboy errors.

Clearly whoever manufactures these fake lipsticks has spent 2 minutes when designing the outer packaging! This is completely different to the real box. First of all the fake lipstick came in a box that was a different shape to the real lipstick. Secondly, the text isn't even close to being correct. The exact same sticker that was seen on the bottom on the tube has been stuck (squint) on the end of the box. It just screams that it's not real! 

The quality of the tube is shocking. The twist mechanism can be easily taken apart from the bottom of the tube, which is obviously something that a legit MAC lipstick would never do. The lipstick feels lighter than the real one, and the actual product inside just seems too plastic-y to be real.

Talking of the lazy packaging errors, the size of the lipstick is different too! I'm no fake lipstick manufacturer, but it seems that a quick measure of a real product wouldn't go a miss when designing the fake packaging, no? As you can clearly see in the above picture, the imposter on the left is taller than the real product on the right. Also, the fake packaging is a lot thinner and feels like it could easily snap with enough pressure.

The colour of the packaging is different. The real packaging (top) is much more black, whereas the fake is more of a dark grey. Also, the fake packaging fails to feature the 'e' symbol, which means that the quantity stated on the packaging is correct according to EU standards - pretty important!

Also, the smell is vastly different. As most of you know, MAC lipsticks have a gorgeous cakey/vanilla scent, something which has not been transferred into the production of the fake lipstick. It smells like paint. Acrylic, and very unpleasant it makes you wonder what the ingredients are of this imposter product. 

I am in no way an expert on this topic, however I thought this might be a helpful post and if it helps one person avoid wasting money on a fake product, then I'll be happy!

Have you ever bought a fake cosmetic item? Do you have any other tips on how to spot a fake product?

Evie x

Sunday, 29 April 2012

Weekly Round-Up - 1

I'm totally cheating with this picture, it was taken ages ago but I really wanted to get this post done and today is very much an off day... I have orange hair because I was trying out the hairspray for Wednesday, I'm going to school dressed as Ginger Spice because it will be the last day ever! So exciting!
This week has been a real mix - I only went to school one day because it's so close to exams and I prefer to revise at home, I get so much more done because I just can't concentrate at school, I always end up talking/going for food/doing anything but revision, and find it easier (although not easy!) to revise at home.
Saturday went so quickly! Got up and did an hour of revision, then went to town to get the orange hairspray for Wednesday! Although because my hair is almost black it takes a LOT to show up, I ended up having to buy £7 worth.. It will be so worth it though, Wednesday will be such a laugh! Then I went home and did another hour or so of revision (which is very unlike me, especially on a weekend! Impressive!) before my friend came and picked me up to see The Avengers! Oh.My.God. It's so good! You need to see it! I absolutely love Chris Evans and RDJ (only in Iron Man, haha) so both of them together was like my dream film! AND I hear that there's an Iron Man 3 and Captain America 2 coming out in 2013/14 so that's exciting!
Today has been a day of revision. I have a test after school tomorrow so I was reading and making essay notes for that, and doing business management past papers too. So much fun, I love revision... Although my day has just gotten a thousand times brighter because Clueless is on now! It's like, totally one of my favourite films! Way fabulous!;)