Realistic Summer Plans

Annddd we’re back. Phew that was a long time! But guess what, it’s over, exams are done and we’re free. Sort of. Thoughts are now turning towards summer and I’m getting excited and making all sorts of plans that I probably won’t actually do. We all do it – dream of adventures  that never actually happen; it might be money issues, timing, distance, who knows. We know it all too well with our 101 bucket list, it takes a lot of work to actually getting round to doing them! So in the interest of realism, I’ve made a list of 5 realistic plans everyone can make for this summer.

5) Dinner with friends – inside or out

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Something I’ve started recently is having dinner with a group of friends every single week. Every Friday evening we get together at someone’s house, eat together and then just sit and talk for hours. Sometimes there’s games, sometimes there’s just company but every time it’s lush. Spend time with your friends and make a big thing out of it. Light some candles, decorate the table, make something adventurous.

 4) Go for a walk – somewhere surrounded by green

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I would usually describe myself as a city girl but as soon as I’m back in green I realise I’m not at all. There’s something breathtakingly beautiful about countryside to me – the hills, the fields and the grass – it creates a sense of freedom. Go for a walk up a hill and just sit there and admire the view. No music or phones allowed. Just you, your thoughts and nature.

3) Stargaze

1It probably won’t be as spectacular as this and hand-holding is not essential but it’s not something we usually make time for and it’s a waste. I was doing my silver DofE a few years ago and a couple of us snuck out one night and lay on the grass covered in blankets looking at the stars. We were caught pretty quickly, given a good telling off and were sent back to bed, but it was still beautiful. If you’re in a city and stars are hard to come by there’s still so much to see, even if you’re just people watching.

2) Visit a local landmark

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The chances are there’s somewhere near you that’s quite the tourist attraction, but you’ve never been. Go! There’s a reason it’s a tourist attraction so go and get your fill. For me, Stonehenge is on my list.

1) Cycle

3It’s a proven fact that exercise makes people happier. Find somewhere beautiful, take a bike or hire one, use a map, get lost, ask directions. If you see a little trail and wonder where it goes, follow it – you might discover something amazing.

Hannah

For more ideas for realistic summer plans, take a look at our board on Pinterest
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Eyeliner: Do’s & Don’ts

Although this is a very popular makeup trend at the moment, a lot of people still don’t completely know how to do it. I’ve put together a short list of do’s and don’ts with eyeliner but remember some of these are just my opinion and there are loads of different styles you can do…

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DO’s

  • Buy a good quality eyeliner 

It’s important to make sure you buy a well-known, branded eyeliner that won’t start cracking and rubbing off by the end of the day.

  • Find your favourite type of eyeliner

There are actually lots of different options when it comes to eyeliner. You can get liquid, gel or pencil. I personally prefer to use liquid or a liquid pen as it’s a more precise line but you can also achieve really good results with a gel liner or kohl pencil.

  • Practice

Before you wear it out for the first time, I would recommend you try it out a few times to get the right technique. The first time I wore eyeliner I drew it on about half an inch away from my actual eye.

 

DON’Ts

  • Draw it on too thick

You don’t want to end up with eyeliner across half your eyelid so make sure you keep fairly near to the lashline.

  • Severe Wings

If you are going to attempt a wing  you need to make sure it looks as effective as possible. It needs to be a consistent line from the corner of your eye right the way to the tip of the wing. Ideally, the wing will look like a continuation of your eye so you need to draw a line out from your waterline (your bottom lashline) to the desired length of the wing.

  • Forget mascara

Putting eyeliner on as an extra is all well and good but not if you forget to put your normal makeup on as well. There are loads of people who seem to think as they are wearing eyeliner they don’t need to wear any other makeup but you need to make sure you put mascara on as well to emphasise your eyes.

  • Give up

Eyeliner takes a long time to perfect and you can’t expect to get it right the first time. Liquid eyeliner is notoriously difficult to get right, but with a lot of practice you can achieve brilliant eyeliner every time!

Katie

Baby You Light Up My World Like Nobody Else

After writing the title of this, I used it as an excuse to put One Direction on shuffle. So that was the soundtrack to this entire post.

So Halloween is coming up and people have started having fancy dress parties. Hannah & I were invited to one yesterday (hence the reason this is being posted on Saturday) and we had to think up some costumes. Firstly, we tried to think of double acts we could dress up as. The best female couple we could think of was Mel & Sue of The Great British Bake Off. Not one of our most inspired ideas. Also, I’d have been Sue, so there was no way we were doing that. Instead, Hannah had already got a Peter Pan outfit her brother had already used and I vowed to make my own. After hours searching through Pintrest (not that I’m complaining) I couldn’t find anything either good or easy to make.  Then, an idea hit me. Or, to be precise, a Sims disk that’d been on a shelf by the computer.  So here’s the process of making the t-shirt for my costume:

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And here is the end result, I also hope you understand my title now:
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And as any good party should have (especially those on Made In Chelsea) there was quite a fair bit of scandal. Oh and overly drunk people. They kind of go hand in hand though.  So to summarise:

  • They were ex couples kissing
  • People that were never couples kissing – including two girls  who had drunk just a little too much ending up kissing each other.
  • One girl getting green paint all over arms. There was also a boy dressed up as the Incredible Hulk. I’ll leave it to your imagination how the green transferred from one to the other.
  • And lots of underage drinking.

So quite an eventful party. There was more, I just can’t think of any of it.
And to finish, another inspiring quote from One Direction:

You know, I know, you know I’ll remember you, and I know, you know, I know you’ll remember me, and you know, I know, you know I’ll remember you, and I know, you know, I hope you’ll remember how we danced. Something most of the people at that party probably won’t be doing a lot of – remembering.

Katie

A DIY Wedding Gift

In case you’re new to this blog, or just haven’t really been paying attention, my brother (Tim) got married at the start of August. Considering the celebration of my brother convincing a woman (Esther) to marry him, and the gaining of a new sister-in-law, my other brother (Luke) and I decided we should probably get them a wedding/welcome to the family gift (which also turned into a birthday AND housewarming present. We’re not too great with gifts). Being the loving and supporting brother he is, Luke decided to dump the whole thing on me with the words “You’re a girl, you know what you’re doing with gifts and things.’

Here’s what I came up with. I say came up with, I just stole it off Pinterest. But it’s a very good idea, especially if it’s for a couple that don’t particularly like lovey-dovey stuff, but still want to remember their wedding date – even if it is just so they’ll remember their anniversary!

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It’s pretty simple to do. The photo-frame is bought from Ikea, The backing pictures can be pretty much anything that’s not going to be too distracting. I chose textured photographs to give a little interest but not distract from the main subject. The letters are cut from cream card, using a Cricut machine, but can be done just the same by hand.

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In the original post on Pinterest, they’d added the couple’s last name to the top, but I thought that would make it a little too wedding-y for them, but may help it make sense to people not in the know!

Hannah

Getting WAYYY Too Into Gift Wrapping

They always say that It’s better to give than to receive’, but that’s the sort of statement that you can’t believe until you’ve become … well, old(er). It’s like when you were in Year 8 and everyone would say, ‘Your school years are the best years of your life‘ and you’re like ‘Urm nah, this is so dull.’ It’s not until after you have a job that requires you to work from 8 in the morning until 5 in the afternoon without spending the majority talking about ‘fit’ boys and who kissed who, that you begin to realise, actually that wasn’t so bad after all.

And so it was with the whole ‘It’s better to give than to receive’ malarkey. Is that a word? I love getting presents. Who doesn’t? Unless they’re from your grandparents and turn out to be a pack of paper (yes, that happened to me once. My 11th birthday, 11 sheets of paper for every year of my life). But I discovered recently that wrapping presents is my highlight of anyone’s birthday. It’s just the watching people tear them apart that I can’t deal with.

DSCN4139These are my creations. Two of these were for my eldest brother’s 26th (and one of those may or may not be a Thomas the Tank Engine book…) and the other’s for my American sister’s 20th. Seen as these presents will be travelling all the way over to the US I wanted to make them extra special (and also to make her cry. It’s the mark of a good present don’t you know).

DSCN4143 DSCN4145It was also an excuse to spend many hours on Pintrest, without feeling as guilty when I should have spent the last few hours making dinner.
DSCN4146 DSCN4147I also added little pieces of paper to tell her why I’d bought each present. The first – “Because of what you said the first time I talked about this” – is a bar of Cadbury’s dairy milk, and is in remembrance of the time I took her for her first English McDonald’s and was going on about Dairy Milk McFlurries. She asked me what was sprinkled on top and I repeatedly told her ‘Dairy Milk! Dairy Milk!” to which she replied “Yes I know ice-cream’s made from milk but WHAT’S SPRINKLED ON TOP!” Bless. It’s so easy to forget to America isn’t actually England with a funny accent.

Hannah

Newspaper Nails

Another nail tutorial for you. This time its newspaper nails. If you have no idea what I’m on about:

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They are so simple to do, and, unlike many tutorials tell  you to, you don’t have to use alcohol – only water!

Okay first,

What you’ll need:

A nail file, coloured nail varnish for your base coat, a clear top coat, a small bowl of water, newspaper with text.

Newspaper Nails

1. Shape and neaten up nails

Using your nail file, shape your nails so they have no rough edges and are nicely shaped.

2. Paint your base coat. 

Make sure you leave it to dry for a while after you’ve painted it because it’ll smudge easily if you don’t once you put the design on.

3.  Cut up newspaper

Cut the newspaper up into small squares that cover the whole of your nail. Cut them all in one go so you won’t have to do it once you’re half way through doing your nails. I would do about 12 though in case some don’t transfer properly.

4. Dip each piece in water so it’s just damp.

Make sure it doesn’t get too wet because the ink won’t transfer.

5Press the newspaper firmly onto your nail

I do mean firmly too. Roll your nail underneath the newspaper in one go so you don’t get duplicated patterns.

6. Top coat

Finish off your design with a top coat. Again, I would wait a while so you don’t smudge the ink.

So there you go. If you try this yourself be sure to show us, we’d love to see how they turn out!

Katie

DIY Flower Nails

Okay here’s a quick DIY nail tutorial that’s easy to do but looks really nice. Also, these are not my own nails because I had difficulty painting them and taking pictures at the same time.

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1. Firstly, file down and shape your nails.

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2. Paint the base coat in whatever colour you want. I’ve chosen Peppermint by Rimmel London. It’s best to do at least 2 coats to make sure its a solid colour.

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3. Leave to dry for about 5 minutes to make sure the design doesn’t ruin the base colour. (Apologies for the over spill onto the finger by the way)

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4. Using a white nail art pen or white nail varnish on a thin paintbrush, paint a flower shape and create 5 lines – one for each petal – in the middle.

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5. Then blob another colour for the centre of the flower – I’ve chosen pink but any colour that matches and compliments the base coat will look good!

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6. And there we go. It takes very little time but gives you nails that extra little something.

Katie

 

Prom Beauty Ideas

This week my best friend,who is in the year below me, asked if I would help her and her friends out for their prom. Of course I jumped at the chance to paint nails, do makeup and hair. Obviously everyone has different ideas of what sort of things they want to wear and how they want to style themselves for prom, but I thought I’d share with you some of the designs I did for them (and some extra photos for the hell of it…)

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Please excuse the weird plastic finger that I practice nail designs on…

But this is the design I came up with to go with my friend’s dress which as you can see matches the pattern on the waist.DSC_0428

To make the triangles even I used the low tack nail design tape I was talking about in another post back in May. But you can easily use sellotape to section off these parts. You can then use either a nail art pen or hair grips dipped in nail varnish for the dots. Make sure if you are using sellotape that you make it a little less sticky first because otherwise it make peel off the polish already on your nails.

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One of her friends also had a blue dress but with diamante on so instead I painted some plain artificial nails with blue nail varnish and glittery tips:

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In order to get a solid colour I had to paint 3 coats of the blue, but seeing as they were fake nails they can be left to dry for as long as needed without having to do everything with that weird hand position you have to use when you’ve just painted your nails. I then let them dry for an hour or so and carefully, in one stroke, did the tips. Although this sounds difficult, you get a much cleaner line and better shape if you do it all in one go.

If you don’t have anything like a plastic finger with them blu-taked on to paint the nails on, you can use any curved surface the right width to stick them onto. In the past I’ve either persuaded my mum to blu-tak them onto one of her fingers or stuck them onto a pencil which is secured to the table.

I would go into details about the hair and makeup but I have no pictures to go along with it so it might not make as much sense…

It was a really good night though but did make me a bit jealous that they got to go off to prom and I didn’t.

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Katie

DIY Spotty Nails

If like me you like to experiment with different nails designs, you’ve most likely attempted to do spotty nails before. Maybe if you’ve had the same amount of luck as me you’ll have turned out with randomly positioned blobs that have run or spread into each other that you just want to take off straight away because they look a total mess. Am I right?

Well, recently I found a very simple but amazingly effective solution to your nail varnish blobbing issues…

HAIR GRIPS (or bobby pins if you’re all American and that). 

I’m obviously not the first person to have realised this, and you may be reading thinking how stupid I am for just discovering it, but they work so well. Even though I’ve got nail art pens, which honestly I am so addicted to, hair grips are such a better way for getting accurate and precise circles on nail designs.

All you need to do is to dab a small amount of your chosen nail varnish, after applying your base colour, onto a tile or piece of plastic such as a lid (preferably not to any items currently in your fridge, I don’t want to get told off by any angry parents) and dip either the smaller or large circular end into it and apply immediately to your nail. I say immediately because otherwise it will dry and smudge across your nail, obviously not speaking from experience there… Then once they have thoroughly dried, apply a top coat to even out any imperfections and help the design to stay on longer.

You can then put loads of different colours on from your nail varnishes and not have to worry about buying new pens in that colour! Such a revelation I know.

I will have to make this short and sweet (mainly because I have no pictures of the nails I did using the hair grips) but I will be sure to post some more beauty pearls of wisdom for you…

Katie

Cut-Out Cupcakes

So it’s another friend of mine’s birthday today. Man, these things just keep coming! I feel like it was only last week that I was desperately trying to think of a present for my best friend’s birthday, but that was actually back in March!

I think I’m going to end up as a ‘thing’ girl. A lot of my friends are ‘thing’ girls. The sort of girls that, when you turn up at a party, people will ask “Oh, is cocktail girl coming?” (she does make some interesting mixes) or for the less fortunate, ‘sick girl’ – (who could forget that night?). I reckon my thing will be cakes. And that’s fine by me. Who doesn’t want cake girl to turn up?

So being the cake girl that I am, I (and a little help from Bella) baked some mean chocolate muffins. Pretty basic stuff, but tasty all the same. In an attempt to make them look a little more exciting, I coped an idea from Do or DIY’s instagram. They post some clever stuff on there (@do_or_diy if you’re interested). You can see the original post here.

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Mine didn’t quite work out like those in the example, but then again, when do they ever? The top was just too crumbly to stay together and I didn’t actually have a heart cutter that small so I was cutting them out by hand. If you want to try this, be prepared for a lot of mess!

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I also made these little message flags out of some spare paper and cocktail sticks. I won’t tell you how to make them. It’s pretty obvious.

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Another birthday down, and almost a whole month until my next one, though that’s my Mum’s so I can hardly get away with making her cake. Any ideas anyone?

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