Tuesday, 9 February 2016

An All-In Dog Subscription Box // Wagglepets

It started with a beauty box, and now theres a subscription box for all sorts of things. Hair accessories, sanitary goods, baby bits, and now, the best of all in my opinion, a doggy maintenance box! People joke that we treat Penny as our baby, and as silly as it may sound, I guess we do just that.  I wouldn't trade her for the world, but as I've been looking where to cut money to save for the wedding, I've come to realise how much owning a dog really costs! With her insurance, high end no-grain food,  flea treatments, joint supplements, toys and treats, it really adds up.

Wagglepets is a dog subscription box, indeed. But really its so much more than toys and accessories. This bundle also includes a monthly delivery of food, a high end insurance policy, and some funky gadgets, too. They've even thought about doggy litter bags..! As an example, Penny's first box included multiple packs of Pedigree Dentastix, plenty of poop bags, bedtime lavender biscuits, training treats, a huge 20kg bag of RSCPA dry kibble, a Whistle activity tracker (yes, a dog fitbit), and the start of a More Than pet insurance policy. Since then, we've received more food (more than she can even get through), more treats, toys, poo bags, and other bits. 

Large dogs usually cost approximately £140 a month, so although this seems quite expensive initially, its pretty good value considering it contains *everything* you need for your pooch. 

You can sign up here, AND get 50% off with the code:  SARAHB50
Enjoy! S xx

Monday, 1 February 2016

Wedding Prep // Alternative Photo Guestbook

 8x10 20 page photobook £170 Photo Productions
(prices vary depending on size)

A short while back, we settled on a photobook to use as a guestbook at our upcoming wedding. As photographers ourselves, we've seen all sorts of alternatives, and we wanted to keep it relatively simple, and have something special to look back on. We particularly like huge frames, with signatures and well wishes surrounding a picture of the happy couple - But we thought it would only take one person to deface it and its no longer suitable for the wall (with my family, its possible haha), so we decided to use a photo guest book by Photo Productions, adorned with images from our engagement photoshoot, ready for guests to sign around. 

I put a lot of albums together, and it does take hours, but I always have a template by said album company to work with, make my own templates and the like. I found this process a little strange. I just sent the images in, and they were put together. As someone who spends ages choosing the images to go together, and making sure they are in alignment perfectly, I found the choice of layout a little strange. Bearing in mind I asked for space around each image for 'signing space,' I still would've liked consistency in the image heights (like the second album image, rather than the first where all images are completely different heights -  It hurts my OCD tendency). Saying that, I haven't a doubt in my mind they wouldn't have changed it a million times if I asked them too, but for the purpose we wanted it for, it was fine. I absolutely can't fault their service, they were responsive, and always polite - There isn't enough of this around anymore, and its priceless! I only ask that one day, they have a template system - That'd make me a 'come back again and again' customer, and we'd probably offer them to our clients, too! 

The book itself, is absolutely worth it. With an acrylic front and back, the book feels heavy and solid to handle. When you're investing in a lot more than a cheap photo box, you're likely to expect something that will last a lifetime, and I've no doubt these thick pages with a flawless lay flat and clear print quality will smash that. I can't believe how many people still go for a cheaper cost over supreme quality - The lay flat pages itself provide a luxury feel that a cheap coffee table book will never match, let alone the thick pages and clarity that professional images crave. They're better than GraphiStudio albums, anyway, which is what so many pros provide as wedding albums (and we don't like). Recommend? Definitely! 

S xx 

Tuesday, 19 January 2016

Decoration Ideas // Filling Gaps with Shelving

Crate - Next
Bust - M&S
Clock - Next

Foil Print - DottyRocks
Bird Ornament - Dunelm

 Copper frame - Paperchase
Pineapple - TKMaxx

One part of our house I'm forever messing about with, is our floating shelves. We swore we would chop up some old wood and make our own shelves, or at least add a rustic veneer to some cheaper shelves, but as it happened we ended up throwing these up, to save money and just keep things simple (not that either of us actually did the dirty work of putting them up - Thanks Dad). They're pretty cheap from most hardware shops - I think all 8 of ours cost£120. Much cheaper than a custom cupboard would've cost, if we went down that route! 

I'm constantly changing where things are - One week hoping for a minimalist look, and another wanting the shelves to be a little more functional, and then putting it back to its usual mess. We've spent a fortune on high end photo frames for our wedding, so they'll be the first thing to be replaced, but other than that I'm pretty stuck at the moment, with how I really want them to end up.

One thing I'll always stick with though, is proportion. I have a bit of a rule with shelving - I halve the shelves, one side of the shelf can be 'cluttered,' i.e two items or more, but then the other half needs to remain clear, with just one item. Then the shelf below or above, will be the opposite. I feel that this way, my inner feng shui can settle. It just has to be in proportion! Obviously the crates at the bottom kind of throw this whole concept off at the moment, as it keeps to have become my wedding organising corner, but this will all change eventually! 

Do you have shelving in alcoves like this?
What have you done with it? And how would you improve this setup?
S xx

Saturday, 16 January 2016

Nars Steven Klein Collection // Eyeshadow and Blush Palette Reviews

Dead of Summer Palette £29
Dual Intensity Blush - Vengeful £30

Well, its love. As per usual, Nars have hit me right in the cupid spot and I'm head over heels with the new Steven Klein collection. In a bit of a whizz, I spent a bit of a fortune at the Nars counter, and in a bit of a daze, just asked the lovely lass working there to show me what she is loving recently (I love being able to do this) and this is what she came up with. She reproduced on me the eye make up that she was wearing that day, and although I don't seem to be able to apply said products with such expertise, I'm pretty happy. 

Yes, that is a blush and highlight palette, and I am wearing that bright red shade on my eyes as well as my face. I'll be honest, I was utterly terrified to be introduced to such a shade, but  pleased to find that it adds a shade of warmth with the tiniest touch of a brush to the cheeks, and as a halo to the eye crease. 

As a devotee to Urban Decays Naked palette, and others around that colour palette, its a bit of a step beyond my comfort zone to venture into a copper and bronze shade, but its a much welcome change. Whilst I'm not sure I'll always love shimmery shades, these super pigmented shades require just a touch of the brush to pick up a good helping of colour. 

All of the Steven Klein collection can be used both wet, and dry. To be honest, they're pigmented enough used dry. Whenever I've tried any 'use wet' product, its ended up rendering it useless for dry use, somehow, so I've not dared try it. I do love though, that the eye palette includes an awesome, very intense eyeliner - I'll take that over a useless mini brush any day! 

Have you tried anything from this collection?
What did you think?
Sarah x

Monday, 4 January 2016

What I Wore in Winter # Ways To Knitwear

Skirt - Tu @ Sainsburys
Boots - Topshop
Burgundy Fedora - BooHoo
Tassel bag - New Look
Ripped Jeans - Topshop 
Wedges - Dries Van Noten
Camisole - Matalan
Velour shorts - Topshop

Burgundy Hat - BooHoo
Cowl neck jumper - George @ Asda*
Tassel Bag - New Look
Boots - Clarks
Skirt - Tu @ Sainsburys

Most of my updated winter clothes have been from supermarkets this winter, just sneakily picked up whilst shopping as if they don't count, (because I don't even have the time to make it to a shopping centre recently). I find George's knitwear in particular to be superior to the likes of Topshop, whose offerings are usually mishapen after one wash, as fashionable as they may be. This whole range is bloomin' fantastic, and here I am sharing a couple of ways to wear both a grey cape, AKA portable blanket, and a cosy cowl neck jumper.

As someone who too often falls into the ease of jeans and a jumper, I find it helps to pull a few key items to the forefront of my wardrobe, and base everything around those pieces for a while. Really, my new years resolution should be to downsize to a capsule wardrobe, but this works for now. Most recently, I've been reaching for this knitted skirt, also from a supermarket, and the Clarks biker boots as pictured, from Shoetique. You may not be able to tell from the photos, but they're actually fur lined. Practical, comfortable, and they look pretty badass, too. I find it hard to find more than two of those three options in a pair of shoes and particularly boots, and so always shell out for a pair of Clarks in winter (though these ones are in the sale now). I would say its worth it as they last years, but I do always manage to find an excuse to buy another pair the next year anyway! My point still stands!

Have you tried knitwear from George?
What about a portable blanket? ;)
S xx

Thursday, 24 December 2015

Mini Reviews // Buffing Up On Nails

I seem to always have had a problem with nails. Working in healthcare, my hands are my most important tools (cliché), and I'm constantly washing them. I'm not allowed to wear nail varnish, and well, my hands are often left looking a little worse for wear. In the run up to our wedding, I've been more and more conscious of my split, dull nails that don't reflect that of a healthy person. So I've been doing something about it, and I'm happy to say change has taken its chance! 

For the last few months I've been taking super strength, no fuss X-Tend life omega 3 cod liver oil tablets. I'm mainly taking these with hope they'll help with the condition of my hair (it totally has, but more on that another time), and clear brain fog, but I'm sure my nails are getting a positive boost, too. Alongside taking two of these a day, I've been using cuticle cream and the ever raved about Nail Envy. Now, I'm not entirely sure how much the Nail Envy has helped as it seems to do nothing for me, but I'm persevering here, purely because it has such a cult following. My favourite product though, which provides an instant boost in a few minutes, is the Revlon Shine Addict Nail Buffer. It retails at £30, and comes with two filing/buffer rolls, and two polishing rolls. Apparently the refills last for 30 uses, but after I'd done mine, my mums, and Dan's nails, I found one buffer roll to be completely used. Maybe I was a little overexcited and overused it, but considering the price of the refills (£10) and how difficult they seem to be to locate, I was pretty disappointed with that. Will it stop me from buying more though? Absolutely not. Despite the price, the instant outcome is pretty magic. (Heads up, its £20 on Tesco and Superdrug right now)

Have you tried any of these?
S xx

Sunday, 6 December 2015

Toni and Guy Limited Edition Fluid Metal Styler // Straighteners

Toni & Guy Fluid Metal Styler - £35* (Half Price)!

In a world full of GHD's, this funky Limited Edition Fluid Metal Styler from Toni & Guy really stands out, I think! Here it is, newly launched, with its metallic and iridescent tones, inspired by the catwalk. Those funky plates do serve a purpose beside looking amazing though, they are titanium, built for ultimate heat transfer, bringing shine and smoothness with them. My biggest bug bear with hair straighteners is snagging, or the need to clamp 'too hard' to get a good effect. Pleased to say that theres none of that here, and instead they provide a flawless, effortless finish! Thanks to the slightly rounded barrel, I love these straighteners for curling, most of all. They're perfect for creating the soft waves that I am always craving (as you can see above)!

The styler is presented in a black barrel case, finished with holographic polka dots to match the straighteners super shiny plates. Inside is also a heating mat! This is the first straightener I've ever had where I haven't had to buy a heating mat separately, its so basic! I've lost track of the amount of times I've burnt marks into the carpet, furniture, or what not. 

Best of all, they retail at £90, but are currently less than half price at £35 in Argos! I dare say I think £90 is just a little steep for this styler, as awesome as it is, but at £35 its a bargain, everyone needs one! 

Have you tried this?
Whats your favourite straightener?
S xx

Sunday, 29 November 2015

GIVEAWAY // Cheerz Personalised Magnets x3

A few days ago, I mentioned that a Cheerz giveaway was soon to go live on the blog. Well, here it is! 
Just enter via the Rafflecopter widget to win one set of three magnet boxes. Each little box contains 9 magnets adorned with images of your choice, and a code will be sent to you so you can order when you're ready! Cute! 

If you'd prefer to get your mitts on some now, get £4 off your first order over £8 with Cheerz with the code 'SARBAI1' (Free shipping as well at the moment) or just click here.

Enjoy x