Saturday 31 August 2013

Bedroom Makeover Part Three: The Final Part

It only seems like yesterday that I decided the bedroom needed to be sorted out once and for all, weeks have passed and we finally have it all done. With little time to play with on weekdays when James was working and myself not being able to do much lifting or moving we have surprisingly managed to get the whole thing sorted in super quick time, our main delay being the two week wait for items from IKEA online. I'm now beyond happy, with such small cheap changes the room feels so much warmer, like a comforting cocoon for us to relax, listen to music, read books and watch old films. The old mattress at the end of the bed that only ever felt like a hindrance now makes me believe we just have a sleigh bed with a super high foot-board. I just want to shut myself in this room.

The main differences to the room is the amount of space we have. All the clothes that were in boxes have been vacuum packed and most of these are now living in the trunk that before this hosted an eighth of my clothes in that room and a few dozen records. As I spend a lot of time in the bedroom at the moment there was an enormous amount of clutter but it was clutter that was needed in there. My beauty products, books, games, jigsaws,  DVD's, Blu-Ray's and cross-stitch all in there. As I couldn't get all the things so easily myself from the other room a lot of the items were brought through and left in reach which was took up half the bed. If you've forgotten the mess then go back to this post. So it wasn't just about decreasing the amount of space the items that aren't currently used at the moment were taking up but also storage solutions for the stuff I do need. The simple answer was to buy a bookcase.

Now IKEA is one place I love, I haven't been to a store in a while but luckily they have a great number of items they will deliver and you can order online, unfortunately it isn't everything they stock. We had to be careful to find a bookcase that would fit in a limited space luckily there was one that would just fit, the BORGSJÖ bookcase, at £55 this was the most expensive item in our order (not that I was paying) but for the quality it is a complete bargain.

We will start at the bottom and work up. To be practical I have added some of the heavier, larger books I want to keep in that room to the bottom shelf, I've squeezed them in but have left a bit of room for a book that is supposed to be on that shelf. Puzzlingly I can't seem to find where I have put my copy of Nightmare USA by Stephen Thrower, if you know or own this book and are aware of its size you'll be amazed that I've managed to misplace it, I can only imagine it is with my copy of Studies in Terror by Jonathan Rigby which has also gone missing. Once they are located they will be joining the other books and my boxes of games for my 3DS and the Xbox in weighting down the bookcase.

Next up is my shelf of beauty products, I've skipped a shelf that has all my cross-stitch and drawing pads as it is still a bit cluttered, although it can be just seen in the first photo. I have a number of products I use daily, I use Simple in the morning Cleanser, Toner and Moisturiser and in the evening I cleanser my face to remove dirt then use Skinetica to remove even more dirt! Followed by using up some Soap and Glory Serum. Once I've used this up I have the lovely Nelsons Pure & Clear skin care set to use, I love being able to try the full set of items in a range. They are currently running a competition on their website (here) to win the complete set of the range each month so get entering! Then I have lip balms, make-up, nail varnish, nail varnish remover and wrinkle treatments I'm making a half-arsed attempt at using.

Now this is my pretty, empty shelf. I hadn't planned it beforehand but I ended up placing one of the new VÄTE table lamps from IKEA on the shelf rather than the bedside table, it really lights up the room in a warm cosy way now it is higher up. I love birds so I have loads of bird related little bits and bobs,  even though when I bought the colourful clip anywhere birds back in May I had no idea what I was going to do with them they really add to the shelf. As I say it's the pretty, empty shelf, I have two boxes of Sunday music on the end which still need to be filled but that's another blog post, the wonderful scented candles bought at the same time as the birds and whatever my current book I'm reading is. The aim is to keep the shelf tidy so we don't ever feel cluttered.

Now the top two shelves and the top are taken up with books, DVD's and Blu-Ray's .Books that I plan on reading next or again and DVD's/Blu-Ray's I plan to watch next. There should be a steady turnover of books if I make the effort with my reading same with watching the DVD's and Blu-Ray's although there will be quite a few that will remain there as some I just want to watch over and over. The old lamp is on the top at the moment as we need to replace the main light fixture so having the lamp up top really brightens the whole room, although most of the time I prefer the softer lighting.

So that's the bookcase, the perfect encapsulation of what I'm doing at the moment.

I didn't just stop with the bookcase, I wanted to make the most of the delivery charge so ended up getting two basic RAST bedside tables. They are completely basic as we are limited with the space, we have one on each side except I've moved mine. Although it will fit by the side of me I feel I can make better use of it by putting it next to the bookcase forcing me to sit up to turn the alarm off, very sensible thinking I reckon.

Finally, you can't do a bedroom makeover without changing at least some of the textiles. We ended up with two different styles of bedding, the one not pictures is actually quite an old-fashioned looking paisley print which I love. The other was a bargain, I actually bought a new super low tog MYSA GRÄS quilt ready for winter (the house is sometimes a lot hotter in the winter), the ÖDESTRÄD quilt cover set with 4 pillowcases, a GOSA VÄDD pillow designed for people that sleep on their back, 2 long KÄLLNATE cushions (I love to wrap my arms around something when I sleep) and a Lyndby fleece throw for the nights when it is colder. This isn't quite my ideal bedding line up, I'm not a big fan of quilts I prefer to layer with sheets, blankets and bedspreads but at the moment this is the next best thing. The total cost of all of the bedding shown came to £36, a complete bargain.

Now we hopefully won't remain at my parents forever but for now we do feel slightly more at home.

After a successful project I always like to think ahead to what can be done next. We already ordered a few pieces from IKEA to make my old bedroom, which is currently our living room/dressing room more liveable which is what we'll start on next. After that I have another plan, we need to sort out the CD's.

Friday 30 August 2013

Bourjois Little Round Pot Eyeshadow Brown Collection

Good things always come in threes, as the Revlon lipstick earlier demonstrated. I obviously spend a lot of my time on Amazon looking for make-up in packs of threes, the Bourjois Little Round Pot Eyeshadow brown collection is one of them. You can pick up a set for around £10 on Amazon, depending on the seller although I'm guessing cheap make-up stores may also have it in.

As a teenager I lusted after Bourjois make-up. The packaging was always exciting and fun along with their colour range but you couldn't knock their natural style make-up. They seemed quite costly when I was younger but I would always buy whatever new mascara they had out as there would always be an offer to go along with it other than that I could only could afford the odd other piece an eyeshadow here or nail varnish there. Brown eyeshadow was popular in the 90's, it symbolised the natural look no matter how heavy you went, or so you though and I loved it. I turned my back on brown eyeshadow for a while in favour of brighter shades (namely green) but in my late twenties I realised I should start using brown as it really suited me.

So skip to my early thirties and I have browns from nearly every brand but Bourjois. When I was at the age where Bourjois make-up was really quite affordable I started to neglect the for more expensive brands, fickle I know. Earlier this year when browsing Amazon I came across the pot sets,  I really wasn't after any new brown eyeshadow but I liked the set and part of me felt excited purchasing Bourjois eyeshadow again, even nostalgic. Bourjois eyeshadow has always been good quality, nothing has changed the little pots last for ages, as long as you don't drop them, the shadow on your eyes will last a good working/school day. The set is a perfect starting point, a good solid basic set. The thing that might annoy some people is that the colour comes out quite pale compared to how it looks in the pot, I prefer this as I like to build colour rather than worrying about getting it smudged in the right place the first time round but it can be frustrating if you want a really dark, smoky look but don't have 15 minutes to layer it on.

The set contains 05 Brun Ireel - a light, everyday brown, 08 Beige Rose - a very pale beige/pink shimmery shade and 54 Marron Glace - a dark brown. In the photo I've used each eyeshadow in the set for a basic, Autumn/Winter daytime look. I've used 08 Beige rose all over my lid and up to the brow, 05 Brun Ireel all over the lid and finished it by using 54 Marron Glace as an eyeliner on my upper and lower lids, followed by just a coat of mascara. Use this with the W7 Naked Eyes Nudes Eye Shadow Palette and you have a perfect set.

Revlon - Super Lustrous Lipsticks - Blushed - Champagne on Ice - Toast of New York

A few months back, whilst on my search for a lipstick similar to Rimmel Black Cherry, I was happily browsing Amazon when I came across this three pack of Revlon Super Lustrous lipsticks for £9.69. The colours included are suitable for everyone, two rather natural daytime shades and a darker all day one. Time constraints and surgery have prevented me from trying them until now.

The three shades in this pack are Blushed, Champagne on Ice & Toast of New York. All of them have an autumnal feel. The colour shown on the base of the lipstick or even on the packet isn't quite representative of how it looks on my lips. I find all of them to be slightly lighter on, even with a couple of coats. That being said I still like them on, they are practical colours and the lipstick feels smooth on. I always find Revlon lipsticks to be good lasting quality, especially for £3.23 each.

Revlon Super Lustrous Lipsticks in Blushed (pearl)

Revlon Super Lustrous Lipsticks in Champagne on Ice (pearl)

Revlon Super Lustrous Lipsticks in Toast of New York (creme)

Wednesday 28 August 2013

Models Own Lip-Stix - Raspberry Cool

Models Own Lip-Stix in Raspberry Cool

This was another impulse purchase, a bit of a blind buy as it was pretty impossible to tell the colour from the website I ordered it from and I couldn't be bothered to research it, I just wanted to try the Models Own Lip-stix having never tried them before.

Good job I'm attempting to acclimatise myself to pink lipstick as this one is super pink, bright, loud pink and I love it. There is nothing about this product I don't like, at first I wasn't sure about the "taste" but when its on it reminds me of blush pears. This pencil is a bit drier going on than most but this is a good thing. The colour is bright with the first coat, doesn't bleed but doesn't leave the lips feeling dry either, it feels as if it gets moister the longer you leave it on and without wiping it off it lasts for as long as you want it to. I could swear it makes my lips look plumper too!

The Lip-Stix come in 8 different colours, Coral Kiss, Ravishing Red, Raspberry Cool, Awesome Apricot, Beauty Blush, Very Berry, Pretty Pink and Purple Pleasure. I love the look of them all and am super impressed with the one I have tried, I just know I'll end up with one of each.

Tuesday 27 August 2013

Jelly Pong Pong 2-in-1 eyeliner & shadow in Black

Jelly Pong Pong 2-in-1 eyeliner & shadow £10.50

I received this 2-in-1 eyeliner & shadow in the August 2013 High-Flyers Glossybox. I'm always after a good eyeliner, really I like to have a number of good eyeliners to hand by many different brands just because they might end up discontinued. This isn't just pointless paranoia. In my early twenties I was obsessed with having cat-eye/winged liner eyes, I wore it like that nearly everyday but struggled to find an eyeliner that I could apply neatly and that would last. I found the liquid ones a nightmare to use, but about a decade ago I found the perfect eyeliner it was by BeneFit a dry powder that you added water to then used whichever brush suited you best, I was in eyeliner heaven, I could do my eyes perfectly and on top of that it lasted all day. This ended up being discontinued not long after I discovered it, but it was replaced by basically the same thing except the powder was half brown, half black instead of all black, it was called Babe Cake which has also been discontinued. This is why I'm never comfy settling with one eyeliner by one brand. You can guarantee that if you rely on one particular one you'll never see it again yet if you play around and have a few different ones in your make-up bag they'll always be around. I suppose that is the treat them mean keep them keen policy but for make-up. So make sure you play the field. I have yet to find one quite as good as the BeneFit one but I keep looking and trying.

That brings us to my new eyeliner. I'm a bit mixed about the Jelly Pong Pong eyeliner there is something about it that feels a bit cheap, that mich just be the pencil. I really like how easy the application of it is, I could create fine lines, thicker lines & I could do cat-eyes, I was able to blend a bit on my lid to make a slight smoky look making this pencil ideal if you don't want to carry much make-up around but want to update your look for your evening. It works best and lasts longer when using a smudge brush then applying a second coat on top of that. I was particularly impressed with how long it last on my lower lashes and how evenly applied it still looked after an hour and plenty of blinking. The one thing that would make this eyeliner perfect would be if it came with a sharpener on top as you really need to keep this pencil fairly pointy. This eyeliner & shadow comes in four different colours, Black, Steel, Plum and Bronze - I think I will end up picking up the plum version ready for autumn.

Monday 26 August 2013

Cosmopolitan Blend Perfection Sponge

Cosmopolitan Blend Perfection Sponge

Like quite a few people I'm quite lazy when it comes to make-up tools. I pick up the odd make-up brush and stock up on cheap foundation sponges, I never really think about it. That is until this month, I did two things, I finally bought myself a foundation brush, then a week after I ordered myself one of these new fancy foundation sponges, I wanted to see what all the fuss was about but I also didn't want to pay more than £10 for something I hadn't tried. I came across the Cosmopolitan version on Amazon, for under £5, a cheap alternative to the original Beauty Blender version.

It feels a lot different to your usual foundation sponge, in a way it feels less absorbent but without being completely waterproof. You can tell the material is quality, it doesn't feel cheap at all. It is easy to hold, not that holding a sponge is ever that difficult but the waist makes it really comfortable to grip. The pointy end is great for applying concealer and foundation around your eyes and nose, tilt it on its side slightly and it is perfect for larger areas of your face. It can't work miracles, the sponge is only as good as the foundation you use but if you have that right you can expect to see a perfectly applied, streak free face afterwards. After I had used it I did give it a quick rinse I want to keep it as fresh as possible, the make-up came out easily and the sponge dried quickly afterwards. A perfect make-up sponge for a super low cost.

bareMinerals - Marvelous Moxie Limited Edition Lipgloss - Oh So Cosmo

I was very fortunate to win one of the limited edition Cosmopolitan (magazine not the drink) inspired Marvelous Moxie lipgloss by bareMinerals, Oh So Cosmo. It was a nice surprise when it turned up in the post, I always love surprises in the post, but not just that, I do love a free lip gloss as even though I wear them I rarely buy them. bareMinerals is also a brand I've lusted after but haven't actually bought anything from them before.

The colour isn't my usual colour, despite the bright pink walls in my room I usually only go for subdued pinks with a hint of brown when it comes to my lips although this year I have vowed to change. I received an amazingly, amazing bright pink lip paint in a Glossybox after that I bought myself a dark but bright pink lipstick which I adore and even wear in bed. The Oh So Cosmo is different though, it's a baby pink, like a slightly paler Pepto-Bismol, this isn't a bad thing but it would have put me off buying it myself. Having tried it on though, I rather like this shade, it is actually versatile. On its own it's a nice light shade on top of your natural lip colouring and for me it works well with my blue eyes. I can see myself wearing it with just a lick of mascara. I also tried it with the KIKO Natural Neige Smart Lipstick underneath and loved the result.

With the KIKO Natural Neige underneath

The lipgloss itself is ultra gloopy in a pleasant way. It goes on nice and thick, you will feel a tingling, cooling sensation which, by my reckoning, helps you fight the urge to wipe it off after half an hour. It really feels pleasant on and I don't feel like it is sliding off anywhere, a little miracle when it comes to ultra shiny lip gloss. Now unfortunately you can't buy this exact shade but there are similar but slightly darker shades available from the bareMinerals Marvelous Moxie Lipgloss range, I particularly like Show Off - baby pink and Game Changer - described as red carpet red.

Saturday 24 August 2013

Bedroom Makeover Part Two: Goodbye VHS

There would be no way I could do this bedroom, and in some ways living room makeover without getting rid of a number of items. Although my bedroom is my main priority the room we use as the living room also needs some work doing so today I got to sit in my big chair and tell James what to do, again, it is slightly frustrating as I'm usually the one that does a lot of the lifting and moving, I like things just so and James doesn't follow instructions too well.

Unfortunately there are many items that I own that I'm unable to vacuum pack. One of the bulkiest of those are the remainder of my VHS collection. I say remainder as I've been weeding them out for around 7 years. Even now I haven't been able to get rid of all but I am chucking more than I'm keeping.

For now I will still cling on to my Multi-Region video player, I can't see myself getting rid of that. My VHS collection now only takes up a small amount of space in my display cupboard so I can't see why I would need to think about getting rid of any others.

Display Cabinet, neatly packed in

I've found it hard to throw away my collections over the years as I loved VHS, I was never interested in the best quality picture, I like lines and crackles. So what DVD was promising us wasn't that appealing to me but they did have something I liked which became more apparent after they had been out for a few years, there was a much wider selection. When I was in my teens I had a copy of a copy from someone of Texas Chainsaw Massacre as it wasn't something you could just buy in shops. It seems absurd that a film that now seems so mainstream would be hard to get. These days most so called video nasties that had been banned in the eighties (for home viewing) are easy to get, extremely easier to get than tracking down a pre-ban copy of the video. This pleases me greatly but has also led to an ever growing collection of DVD's and Blu-Ray's. Strangely the DVD that started my DVD collection wasn't a once hard to get horror, instead it was the TV show Freaks and Geeks, it was shown on UK TV briefly but they either didn't show the whole series or I missed it, either way I loved that show and needed to be able to see all of it. I found myself a multi-region DVD player and ordered the box set of Freaks and Geeks from the now defunct The box set is still in good order and I still love the series.

So here is what I am getting rid of:

and the few that I'm keeping, for now at least:

Sadly I have also decided to grow up and stop holding on to my flamingo lights, I love them so much but they don't work. Well I just need to change the main bulb and they would be fine but they truly smell awful. I used to smoke and these reek. I don't think I was fully aware of how bad things smelt until I quit. Part of that could be regaining a full sense of smell but it also isn't as obvious when you are around that smell all the time. It will only be goodbye to this set as I plan to buy another one!

Now we have plenty of time to enjoy the rest of our Saturday, well a few more hours left in which for part of it we plan to watch more of the Prisoner Cell Block H box set, unfortunately I only have the first volume out of twenty, with the second volume ordered. I've had it for a while but hadn't thought to watch it until an old friend brought up one of the characters (Joan 'The Freak' Ferguson - one of the best nicknames ever) of the show the other week, although she doesn't appear in the volume(s) I have. I forgot about it again but then with the new "re-imagined" version of the series, Wentworth, starting next week on Channel 5 I thought it was time we watched the original again. I have to say, in my head it was always good but part of that was nostalgia, I was a child when I watched it originally and always had fond memories of it especially compared to Spitting Image which scared the living daylights out of me. Watching now as an adult I'm actually shocked at how brilliant it is and can't wait to follow it all the way through, that is once I have all the volumes.

Thursday 22 August 2013

KIKO Cosmetics - Smart Lipstick - 901 Natural Neige

KIKO Smart Lipstick in 901 Natural Neige £2.50 sale price (normally £3.90 - I think, the 3 is right at least)

I had originally gone on the KIKO website for the water eyeshadows but when I saw there was a sale and how cheap items were I was like a kid in a sweet shop. I stocked up on a few bargain items including three lipsticks the first of these being the natural neige so a very light brown/pink natural colour. I always think it is harder to find a good natural colour than it is to find a strong, outlandish shade but at £2.50 I was willing to take a chance.

This is a great lipstick, I couldn't tell the difference between this and a MAC lipstick, when I'm back in work I'll be on that site ordering one in every colour, along with every other lipstick they do! It applies so smoothly, I tried both on its own and with the EOS Lip Balm underneath which is what the photos depict. It lasted fairly well around an hour until I wiped it off to take a drink from my water bottle. Although I always find more subtle shades need reapplying more often than darker shades, mainly because dark shades, when blotted, leave plenty of colour on the lips and I'm lazy, so if there is something remaining I can't be bothered to reapply. I love the shade, it is a barely there lipstick but my lips are incredibly pale at the moment so this really does add some colour. The lipstick smells lovely although I couldn't put my finger on what it smells like at first today I worked it out, fudge, it smells like fudge so good news if you like your lipsticks to smell pleasant, bad news if you have a hard time trying not to devour lipsticks even without a tempting aroma.

Lipstick at a slight distance - ignore the fact that I have no other make-up on and that I'm in bed, that is my life at the moment.

To sum it up a perfect shade for a perfect price without skimping on the quality.

Wednesday 21 August 2013

The 6 Month Challenge - 4 Months in

What I've come to realise about myself from this challenge is that I already have too much stuff to begin with, I had high hopes of having a big clear space where toiletries and cosmetics had once filled, instead I'm left with a mess. Piles of items waiting to be used, the challenge will be ongoing, I've decided it will end once I've run out of items. I'll allow myself the odd treat and things that I use but where I've bought things to try out I need to just do that.

I keep pulling things out to use and my desk is just getting worse. I've let it get so bad as I'm rarely sat there so it doesn't bother me as much. It makes more sense to spend any energy on trying to make my bedroom as tidy and usable as possible.

Part of this whole mess isn't completely my fault. I have been stuck in bed for most of the day since the operation which is why I'm not writing as much. If I'm not in bed I'm doing little exercises to try and push myself to get better but I feel like I'm on a roller coaster, I'll push myself up, push myself to do a bit more then free fall into pain and days in bed and a sickly feeling. I am getting there health wise but my use of cosmetics is nil, I like to do my nails now and then and try and keep up with a skin routine. Straight after the operation I was having to use scent free soap but I'm now back to using up shower gel, although not to showering by myself.

So in the last couple of months I have only managed to use up the following:

2 x Superdrug own brand baby wipes (This summer it really has been too hot to be stuck in bed)
2 x Waitrose 4-in-1 vitamin E wipes
1 x Boots essential nail varnish remover
1 xBoots cotton wool balls
1 x bottle of Skinetica

This really hasn't cleared much space, well any space. At the moment it feels like I'm wading through mud to get through all my stuff, just the beauty kind.

EOS Organic Lip Balm

EOS Lip Balm Honeysuckle Honeydew
Spending more than £5 on a lip balm may seem excessive but as I've learnt you can't put a price on smooth lips. Why wear a £20 lipstick if your lips aren't up to scratch? A primer can do wonders for your face, laying a perfect foundation before you add, well, your foundation. A lip balm should be viewed in the same light, not just to keep lips moist and protected but smooth making a perfect base for lipstick. As I was to discover not all lip balms are the same.

I don't have a good history with lip balm, I'm not going as far to say I have a bad history, that would be a bit too dramatic, I'm just lousy at using lip balm up. I love to buy it although my main concern is always what the smell is, not how well it will work. I'm more likely to lose it than use it up but I don't really care. Recently I've started to care as I've noticed that my lack of perfect lip balm use is really evident in my chapped lips.

EOS Lip Balm on my lips

I had initially dismissed the EOS (Evolution of Smooth) Lip Balm as a bid of a fad, a celebrity trend, but when I saw the honeysuckle honeydew version I decided to give it a go. The golf ball like shape of the lip balm is perfect for application to both lips in one go, not that it saves much time but it just gives the perfect coat in one swoop. Having used this for a couple of weeks I'm happy to say there is a great difference between this and a £2 lip balm, which I wasn't expecting. Most lip balms go on thick and greasy, creating an oil slick on your lips, an impossible surface to then apply lipstick the EOS Lip balm creates a perfect, thin level of smoothness, making it a perfect primer. My lips feel incredibly soft and moisturised, it feels light meaning I don't feel the need to wipe it off after while like others and can have a drink without leaving a slime trail on my cup. I never thought I would  but I would really say this lip balm is worth the extra money. Whether you have problems with chapped lips or you want to create the perfect base before applying lipstick this is the perfect lip balm to go for.

There are so many different "flavours" in the collection, in full Blueberry Acai, Strawberry Sorbet, Pomegranate Raspberry, Summer Fruit, Sweet Mint, Honeysuckle Honeydew, Medicated Tangerine & Lemon Drop with SPF 15, so plenty of choice. Although you might not be able to pick them up at your local supermarket it is worth searching on Amazon if you are after a particular flavour, there are also multi-packs available if you can't make up your mind. In the UK the Bath & Body Shop has some great deals on them, currently at £4.99, £8.99 for a duo pack. A lot more expensive than the cost of them in the U.S.A. but I still think they are worth the extra money.

Saturday 17 August 2013

Bedroom Makeover Part One: Storage Solutions and Ruthless Behaviour

Having spent nearly a year in the confides of my bedroom I've started to feel as if the walls are closing in on me. The piles of goods are getting to me but there is nowhere to put them neatly so that I can reach. I know the idea of me being tidy would be enough to send friends and family into hysterical laughter but although I'm a collection hoarding, book piling menace, I am obsessed with order, I like things to have a proper place, my 1000+ dvd collection is even in alphabetical order. As we are just staying at my parents temporarily we haven't really made anything our own, nor can we really, but whether I'm stuck in bed for just one more week, one more month or one more year, something needs to be done.

The plan is to turn the bedroom into a blissful, relaxing, comfy room. We'll always use it, we both read in bed and when winter comes most film watching will be in that room also.

So this is how it looks now:

A disaster!

We don't have use of the chest of drawers or the wardrobe, my Mum has her clothes filling these. Nor do we have use of the under bed storage. Most of my clothes are in my old bedroom which we currently use as a living room. I need two wardrobes and two chest of drawers at the moment I have one wardrobe, one collapsed wardrobe, one chest of drawers in use but unable to get in easily, so only clothes I don't wear much sit in there, I have one bedside set of drawers for a few items but everything else is in piles or bags. There isn't much I can do about this just yet but hopefully in a couple of weeks I'll have another chest of drawers. James' clothes are in piles in the  bedroom, he does have one drawer he can use but that is it. There are also boxes of my clothes in the bedroom, four boxes, one trunk and a holdall stuffed full. They fill the room, we can't actually walk around the bed. This room really makes me feel trapped and I'm in there around 20 hours a day, our first plan had to be to sort out all these boxes of clothes.

I've been rather sceptical about vacuum packing clothes and bedding, I could see how it would work on items like pillows but not clothes as much. Fortunately I put that fear aside and ordered a pack of 14 large bags from Andrew James via Amazon, £14.99+£4.99 p&p. When the bags arrived I was impressed by the quality, I felt like I hadn't spent that much on them for the amount we received. They are amazing, I can't get over it, James was hysterical with delight. We only needed to use around 9 bags to fit everything, I also managed to create some space behind the back of the door in the living room, I have a rack of jackets and coats that I rarely wear so decided to pack them too. These photos show a bag full of them, in it there are three coats - one of these is a thick wool type coat, along with seven jackets.

From the front

From the side
Now it weighs a bit but the amount of room it saves is phenomenal. I had anticipated it would take a while to get all the air out of these bags, some of the reviews stated this but I can only suggest their vacuum cleaners are less than impressive as it takes a matter of seconds to flatten these beauties.

Piles and piles of dresses!
By the end of it we were able to fit six of them in the trunk, one we have hidden in my Mum's spare wardrobe and the other two we can slide behind a bed in the box room. The boxes the clothes were previously in took up so much room, now they're gone and already I feel like I can breathe even though there is a long way to go, most of that will have to wait until the Ikea delivery.

This was our main exertion in sorting out the bedroom this weekend, I say our exertion but I'm unable to do much moving and no lifting, I'm just there to draw out plans (Red pen, Blue pen, Black Pen and a ruler have all been used), I organise it and tell James what he needs to do, of course I have to advise him on which clothes I want to keep and which can go, I wouldn't leave him in charge of which clothes to keep as they would all end up being given away. We vacuum packed just the one jacket of his, he wouldn't even let me pack a smart shirt of his that he had forgotten about.

All in all I think we have made a fantastic start and to top it off, I also finally found what I have been searching for, I think I must have been using the wrong keywords or didn't think it looked big enough but I finally found a TV/Monitor riser that I could also fit my blu-ray player under. This also means my 360 can sit on top of the chest of drawers. It not only looks tidy but it also makes a big difference for me. As they were both sat on the floor I could only use the 360 to stream Lovefilm/Netflix or play whatever game James had left in the drive for me but I can now reach without bending and play whatever I want, watch whatever I want, whenever I want.

Aside from clearing some space I'm also hoping to improve the look of the room with lighting, bedding and the odd new cushion. The bookcase we have ordered will be a big help as I want to be able to keep books that I plan on reading next in the bedroom and DVD's/Blu-Ray's of that nature too. I also have a number of toiletries I use in the bedroom and would like to keep them on a shelf rather than having everything on my bedside table to knock over when the alarm goes off. It's a while until the Ikea delivery comes, we have to wait until the 27th even though we ordered on the 14th.. I'm really looking forward to getting it all sorted though, I'll turn my bedroom into a sanctuary, a beautifully lit sanctuary just one with a spare mattress stood up at the end of the bed.

Essie - Cherry Pop

I've fallen in love with Essie after trying out a couple of free samples of their Nail varnish this year. This has led to a few purchases including Cherry Pop which I wasn't so sure about. I'd been looking at Cherry Pop online for a while, I've not been out shopping for a while but even if I had I've never seen an Essie stall to browse. I'm obviously shopping in the wrong places. So I've only been looking at it online and wasn't able to tell how sheer it really is. Fortunately I waited for it to go down to a more reasonable price on Amazon otherwise I might be a little disappointed.

Essie Cherry Pop nail varnish with Korres Baby Pink nail varnish as a base coat
Essie Cherry Pop Nail Varnish no base
I'll start with the good points. Like all the Essie I've tried it goes on evenly and dries quickly on its own, I found it slower on the hand with a base coat which led to smudging in the night. It has a standard brush, I always prefer squares brushes, it isn't really a problem with a clear varnish though, although you can see I managed to get it on my skin, this was mainly down to doing it late at night when tired. To me it seems to be completely clear, I did expect a slight tint of red to the finish but having tried it on one hand on its own and the other with the Korres baby pink varnish as a base coat, using two coats with the Korres and three with the Essie varnish. I didn't really see any colour. I did think my nails on the clear hand did look slightly healthier though, I've been having problems with yellow stains after wearing green varnishes, even with a base coat, this kind of corrected it. It is a nice varnish but I wouldn't pay full price for it, I'm happy I've got it but won't bother with it again. The other thing, I'm not sure whether I'm imagining it or whether it is supposed to be scented as I could swear it smells like cherries. I've never understood the point of scented nail varnishes as the overwhelming smell is always chemically and there is no escaping that. This actually made me rather nostalgic, the heavy nail varnish smell with a hint of cherry made me think of vodka-cherry slush puppies, but just like them, I started to feel sick after a while.

Wednesday 14 August 2013

DVD + Blu-Ray + Book - Additions to My Collection - Post-Op Edition

Not having an income and being mainly stuck in bed hasn't stopped me updating my collections. Mainly thanks to saving vouchers for a rainy, depressing, stuck in bed day and my partner treating me and then grumbling that we don't have anywhere to put things once they arrive.

Now I already have a huge collection of DVDs and a decent size collection of Blu-Rays but I have a fear of things going out of print, this fear is usually unfounded but there are a few items I didn't order only to see them going out of stock leaving behind the odd seller with an overpriced copy. I've always been a cheap collector, I rarely would buy items on release until recently. These days you can sometimes get a better price on an item if you pre-order. I don't like to spend more than £6 on a DVD or £10 on a blu-ray unless it is a special edition. So I try and sit tightly, almost like bidding on an auction, sniping before the item goes out of stock.

1. Withnail & I - Blu-Ray Steelbook -  Zavvi . I have seen this film too many times but I never get bored and the steelbook is too pretty to ignore.
2. Evil Dead 2 - Blu-Ray Steelbook - Zavvi. I love the Evil Dead films (I say that without seeing the recent re-interpretation) I already have the steelbook of the first so wanted to carry on my collection, now I just need Army of Darkness on steelbook, well, if that happens.
3. Belle De Jour - Blu Ray - Amazon. A fantastic film, a gorgeous edition from Studio Canal, like a hardback book rather than DVD case.
4. Delicatessen - Blu Ray - Amazon. Another from the Studio Canal Blu-Ray Book editions.
5. The Third Man - Blu-Ray - Amazon. One of my all time favourite films and my third and final blu-ray from the Studio Canal book editions.

1. Metropolis - Blu-Ray - Amazon. I have been kicking myself for a while as I was slow on the uptake and didn't purchase the steelbook version when this film first came out on blu-ray. I was already kicking myself for picking up the DVD a few months before they announced they had found lost footage. I decided to bite the bullet and buy the blu-ray when I could get it for a tenner as the steelbook copies that are available will have to either go down in price by a lot (copies currently go for close to £100) or I would need to win the lottery, either way I won't mind having triplicates. Now I just need to do the same and buy a copy of M, next time I either win a voucher or earn some vouchers.
2. The Killing of a Chinese Bookie - Blu-Ray - Amazon seller Movie Store - I love John Cassavetes, I feel completely entranced watching his films, they bring me such joy just because they are so damn good. I kind of think it is best not to read the description before watching one of his films, they sound depressing and the subject matter is, the pace is usually slow but everything flows so naturally by the end of them you feel as if your life has been enriched just by watching them. Which is why I went for the 3-disc collection rather than just the two. I adore this film.
3. Dracula - Blu-Ray - Amazon. Classic Hammer. Classic Horror. Classic Dracula.

1. Motel Hell - Blu-Ray - Amazon. I love this horror film, it gets more enjoyable each time I watch it so I needed the blu-ray.
2. Spider Baby - Blu-Ray - Amazon. I've been wanting to see this film for a while and I wasn't disappointed. Great edition.

1. Don't Talk to Strange Men - DVD - Amazon. Haven't watched this film yet but the trailer made it look like a prototype slasher, not necessarily with the slashing.
2. Tread Softly Stranger - DVD - Amazon. Another one I haven't seen but I'm always allured by Diana Dors, a fabulous actress.
3. Yongary/Konga - DVD - Amazon seller Movie Mars USA. Another from the Midnite Movies collection to add to my collection. I always love creature features, from old classics to today's cgi infested ridiculousness.
4. Une Femme Est Une Femme - DVD - Amazon. I have yet to watch but with it being Jean Luc Godard, it has been on my list for a while.

1. American Horror Story - Blu-Ray - Amazon. Surprisingly I really liked this series, usually the most hyped TV series and new horror films I hate. I preferred the second series but find it impossible to order our of order. Plus the second series is too expensive on blu-ray at the moment, series 1 was only £16 when I ordered it but has shot up to a whopping £25.98, I must have got lucky!
2. 30 Rock Season 6 - DVD - Amazon. Love this show but always forget to watch it when it is actually on sky. Always have to pick up the box set.
3. Grange Hill Series 3&4 - DVD - Amazon. I'm a sucker for nostalgia, I loved Grange Hill when I was young and actually preferred the repeats of the early series, I still can't get enough of it.

The above photo shows the first lot of my Network sale super buy. I love it when they have a sale on, they have so many good horror/thriller/creepy anthology series on offer. The sales are also fantastic, they are usually around half price, this last time it was 40% off pretty much everything.

1. Arthur C. Clarke's Mysterious World - DVD - Network. This series is shown on Sky quite a bit, or was fairly recently, I got fed up with managing to record the same episode over and over, never anything else.
2. Stainless Steel and the Star Spies - DVD - Network. A treat for James.
3. Tales out of School - Blu-Ray - Network. A collection of the films of David Leland.
4. King of the Castle - DVD - Network. A children's TV series from before I was born, if it sounds good and it's cheap I'll have it, especially if it sounds weird.
5. The Corridor People - DVD - Network. Another series from way before I was born. Described as a surreal crime/fantasy adventure in the mould of The Avengers, must be good!

The second photo showing my Network buying spree.

1. Beasts - DVD - Network. I just love an anthology series.
2. The Dark Angel - DVD - Network. A BBC adaptation of J. Sheridan Le Fanu’s Uncle Silas.
3. Shadows series 2- DVD - Network. A spooky children's anthology series.
4. Shadows series 3 - DVD - Network. Same as above but the next series!

Now on to the books.

I love these Mystery & The Supernatural collections, I already own several but wanted to add more to my collection in time for Autumn. At around £3 they are well worth the money.

Spurred on by the tragic loss of Karen Black last week I decided to look in to buying what I consider my favourite film starring her, The Day of the Locust, set in the glamorous age of 30's Hollywood The Day of the Locust takes a cynical look at a group of residents of the run down San Bernadino Arms. This film has such a weird effect on me, it wraps me up in glamour just as much as it disgusts me. It truly is a classic and I would love to see a special edition blu-ray but fear this could be just a pipe dream. I'm still holding out which is why, in the meantime, I thought I should make the effort to read the book.

I'd also been hearing good things about The Vogue Factor and also wanted to add to my Agatha Christie collection which is very small (one shore stories collection), I used to always borrow them from the library instead. I really should make the most out of having time to read.

Now the only problem with all the DVDs and Blu-Ray's is I can't actually watch them at the moment. When I'm stuck at home in the day I would have to to ask my Mum to put the dvd/blu-ray in but at weekends James and myself are doing plenty of dvd/blu-ray watching from the bedroom but I have plans to get the blu-ray moved so I can reach it. The only other problem with that is the mess. Things I need are piled to hand, James has been sleeping on the floor as one half of the bed is full of handy stuff/magazines/books/games/and so on. So we are starting a project, mainly my idea, I decided it was best to start the big clear up project while I'm too invalid to lift a finger. I will instead plan everything out, help with some light stuff and generally be a bossy boots. In the end it will be worth it, even though we are still in my parents, the bedroom will be transferred into a restful haven where we can relax, watch films, play games, listen to the radio and read. Even when I am fully recovered I want a stressful tidy environment to relax in. The first step is sorting out all those boxes full of clothes, I just hope 14 vacuum storage bags is enough!

Tuesday 13 August 2013

Pastel Nails + White Polka Dots

I've loved having pastel nails this year, I've picked up so many shades but as I've mentioned in a past post I feel Autumn brewing. I love Autumn and Winter, I love the darker months, I prefer the cold. When it gets to Autumn I automatically switch to darker colours, golds, rust, browns, 70's style clothes, thick jumpers and cardigans. My nails go metallic. Even though we are still only in August my mind has switched to Autumn thanks to the temperamental weather bringing cool breezes into my room. So I wanted to do some styles that have thought about doing all summer but the whole hospital/surgery/recovery thing has prevented me (only in the sense of it being too much like hard work/can't wear nail varnish in hospital) from doing. With the aid of my partner who was kindly there to fetch the things I needed after a lengthy description and to hold the pots for me as I'm still in bed I came up with this:

To say I came up with this a bit strong, all I did was alternate between light lavender, mint on my nails and then topped them with white dots. So pastel nails, white polka dots and a petrified looking, inanimate bunny. 

I used Essie's Nice is Nice for the lavender, nails inc Royal Botanical Gardens for the mint and I used Rimmel Brit Manicure white nail tip colour for the dots, I knew it would come in handy! 

Saturday 10 August 2013

What's in my GLOSSYBOX August 2013 - High-Flyers

The months roll into one at the moment, I hadn't realised it was time for another Glossybox which was a nice surprise this morning. The theme of the box this month is High-Flyers, so products for girls on the go. A really nice collection this month with two trials and three full size products.

Emite Make Up - Eyelash Curler Full size (Full size of course!: Approximately £20)

There aren't many things I can say about eyelash curlers as I don't buy them I just use them. I've had many free ones in my time and most are exactly the same. With this one you can tell it is good quality, it is heavier, it feels sturdy and you don't feel like something is going to fly off when you press it together. I'm really happy with this product and it comes with four refill pads.

Urban Veda - Neem + Botanics range - Purifying Day Cream 10ml (Full size: £12.99 for 50ml)

A pore refining, mattifying daily cream for oil-prone skin. It smells very much of witch hazel and tea tree oil which is always a good sign. A little spreads a long way and lave my skin feeling fresh and slightly tingly. I have quite oily skin and a lot of moisturisers leave me feeling greasy but this has left my skin feeling soft and dry without being drying. This product is also vegetarian society approved.

TRESemmé - Keratin Smooth Concentrated Rinse Off Treatment Shot 15ml (Full size: £1.49 for 15ml)

A mini or travel sized rinse off hair treatment. I've not cracked the seal but I can smell it already and it smells gorgeous. I used to use conditioner everyday but have found my hair benefits more from weekly deep condition especially as it can get quite greasy. I don't have any doubt that this will work wonders on my hair and is perfect size to take on holiday.

Jelly Pong Pong 2-in-1 Eyeliner & Shadow Full size (Full Price: £10.50)

A new launch in the Jelly Pong Pong range. A 2-in-1 eyeliner/shadow, a thick crayon that goes on smoothly although I rounder the tip first. I received the black crayon it was great for creating a smoky eye effect and the eyeliner looked strong on top afterwards so great to smudge or leave as it is.

Océane Make-Up Remover Pen Full Size (Full Size: Not available in the UK yet)

A handy tool. I usually do what everyone else does and use a cotton bud and a bit of make-up remover, when I can find them. This pen makes it more precise, easier to touch up eyeliner Having only just made the effort to get a corrector pen for my nails I'm happy to try any time saving products.