Category Archives: Events

The Bloggersxmas2016 Event | #Blogmas Day 2

A couple of weekends ago I was fortunate to be able to attend the #bloggersxmas held at Finches Pub in Finsbury Square, London. 

After getting completely lost, with no Internet connection on my phone so I couldn’t even check google maps,  I finally arrived about 20 minutes late. The hubby had to talk me through directions over the phone in the end! 

Anyway, late and slightly flustered I was greeted by jasmine and Kirsty, authors of Soeursdeluxe.com, who organised the event. They were lovely and very welcoming. 

The event was a chance to meet up with other bloggers and to meet some exciting brands. After a glass of refreshing Apple punch I had a little wander around the brands showcases. There was a good mix of brands I already new and some new discoveries. Here is a quick round up of the best. 

Online boutique  Mikko specialise in luxury fashion created by talented designers from across Europe.

I loved the simplicity of their dresses and super chunky knitwear. Some of the pieces were modelled by Mikko’s representatives who kindly posed for photos. (Sorry I forgot your names) Don’t they look fab though! 

This is defiantly a brand I will be checking out in the future. 

Aromand is a British brand based in Berkshire that create luxury hand made candles, reed diffusers and room sprays. 


The scents are unique and very sophisticated. I had the chance to have a chat with Sue who develops the scents and makes the products. 

She takes inspiration from her husband who is a chef and adopts a similar approach to recipe development when creating new scents. 

My favourite has to be Berries and Black Pepper. Berry scents can often be too sweet and overpowering for me but the addition of black pepper adds a balanced spiciness to the fragrance. 

All of her products are beautifully gift wrapped as well. 

I’m gutted my photography was not up to scratch on the day as it really doesn’t do the brand justice. 

Jewelled Buddha is a brand that has captured my heart. I’m saving my pennies so I can purchase one of their handcrafted sari necklaces in the near future. 

All of the scarves and necklaces are created from repurposed saris meaning each piece is one-of-a-kind. 

Jewelled Budda works in partnership with Indian based social enterprise, Wandering silk, ensuring the skilled women who create each necklace and scarf are paid a fair wage, experience regular employment and safe working conditions. 

The brand is truly inspiring in its promotion of zero waste and empowering of women. 

Annoyingly I was so busy chatting to Harjit about the brand and its work I totally forgot to take any photos of the gorgeous necklaces and scarfs. Do check out their website though here.

I have always been a fan of Joe Browns who were at the event showcasing their Christmas collection. It is Beautiful, with a capital B. 

Other creatives showcasing at the event included; the very talented Sheena Bulsara who creates one-of-a-kind jewellery, Katherine Ellizerbeth Millinery and Gia who were displaying their soon to launch collection of clutch bags. 

Sheena Bulsara’s piece inspired by her time living in Paris
Hats created by Katherine Elizerbeth Millinery


The event was sponsored by jewellerybox.co.uk who provided the bags for our goody bags we were lucky to receive. We were gifted by brands including skinfix, freeman beauty, popband, PNY, yankeecandle and my beauty matches. 


I will let you know how I get on with some of these goodies in the future. Spoiler alert though, I’m already loving the Burt’s Bees lip balm and skinfix handcream. 

A #Fabulousnight in with Fabulous Mag

On Tuesday evening myself and little sister, fellow blogger Ashliegh,  took a trip up to London to attend Fabulous Magazines #Fabulousnightin.  Do go check out her blog, she writes about a wide variety of topics. 

The event was held on the top floor of News UK’s rather swanky building in London Bridge. The views from the 17th floor are quite amazing. With floor to ceiling Windows you get an amazing panaramic view of Londons Southbank. I tried to get some photos to share but as it was dark the internal lights kept reflecting in my lense. Bummer! 

When we arrived we had the opportunity to enjoy a glass of wine from i heart WINES. Don’t mind if I do! 

If you want to find out more about the brand then check out their website

Whilst sipping on our drinks we sat down to watch the Q&A session led by Claire Frost. 

The panel of authors included Lindsey Kelk (I’m a bit of a fan girl), Giovanna Fletcher and last but not least Mhairi McFarlane. This was live streamed on Fabulous Magazines Facebook page. 

There was plenty of laughter and valuable advice for aspiring authors. The video is worth a watch if you want some advice and industry insider tips. 

We then had the opportunity to meet each of the lovely ladies in person and have our books signed. They were fab and took time to have a chat and pose for a photo with everyone. Well done ladies! 

Posing with Lindsey Kelk

So with some new books to read (other than my business studies textbooks) I will do my best to share some reviews with you in the new future.

LDNmeetups #BigBloggerExpo

Sunday saw me heading up to London with my blogging partner in crime, aka my little sister Ashleigh. 

We were heading to The Danubius Hotel Regents Park for the #BigBloggerExpo organised by LDNmeetup’s Lauren and Abi. Once again the girls outdid themselves and arranged another fab blogging event. 

The premis of this event was to meet with brands whilst making connections for future collaboration opportunities and to meet and chat with other bloggers. There was also a fundraising element to raise funds for the British Heart Foundation. One of my favourite things about LDNmeetup is they like to give back. In fact this weekend several bloggers are volunteering at Race for Life Hyde Park providing essential support in the running of the event. 

When we arrived we were signed in and each given a stamp card with all the brands we would be meeting listed. We then were free to collect the stamps from each brand and would recieve a goody bag if we filled our card. I think this is a great idea as it means you don’t accidentally miss out on meeting any of the brands. I’m also a kid at heart and liked collecting the stamps. It reminded me of the merit stamps your teacher would give for good work at school. 


The event was sponsored by some excellent brands including Jewellerybox.co.uk, a London based online company specialising in real jewellery at costume jewellery prices. They have some super cute designs that arrive beautifully gift packages. 


Bouroughbox, another sponsor, are an exciting company that offer a monthly subscription service delivering artisan food products straight to your door. This is one for foodies as there are so many exciting and unique brands included. I’m desperate to sign up but sadly can’t afford it at the moment. (Fingers crossed I get the job I’m interviewing for next week, then I might be able to)

So many exciting brands were exhibiting on the day, too many to feature in one blog post. They included Dr Paw Paw, Living Proof, Heaven skincare, Westlab, Instant Effects, Bonnie Boo Gifts and many many more. 

All the brands were very generous and gifted us with lots of samples to try so do keep your eye out for my reviews that will follow over the next couple of weeks. 

For now though I will leave you with some pictures of the event.

Bonnie Boo Gifts
Jody Bell
Dr Paw Paw
Two Three / Clothing Brand

Don’t forget to look out for the upcoming product reviews. 

If you want to find out more about Ldnmeetup blogger events you can do so here. 

Raising funds for MacMillan Cancer Support 

MacMillan Cancer support is a charity that is very close to my heart. As a charity it provides support for people experiencing all types of cancer. 
I am thankful that MacMillan is there for my mum as she continues her Cancer Journey. Mum has terminal Breast cancer and everyday provides new challenges for her. 

She is very strong and has a truly inspiring attitude towards this. MacMillan though is a charity she can turn to for the support she needs to keep being strong. 

Mum with me and my sisters

This is why I’m 100% behind my husbands choice to support Macmillan by raising sponsorship when he takes part in this years London triathlon.

He has also had his own experience with Cancer, at just 20 He was diagnosed with testicular Cancer. 

With just over a month to go until the event on 7th August training is getting serious. This evening was spent over our local Trifarm practicing open water swimming. I wasn’t in the water, nope I was drinking tea on the edge of the lake under my hood keeping warm. Good job he was going to get wet anyway just look at that stormy sky. 



As you can see training is going well. 

If you would like to show your support for MacMillan you can make a donation via my husbands charity page. 

If you want to find out more about the charity MacMillan Cancer Support you can do so here.

Thanks for taking the time to read this very personal post. 

An afternoon of crafting | #VikingArtyParty

Last Saturday I was very fortunate to be able to attend the #VikingArtyParty held in The Gallery at Lumiere London.


This was such a fun afternoon and has left me very inspired. 

We had the opportunity to take part in three different craft workshops including calligraphy, origami and block printing,  all of which where led by some very talented people. 

There was a chance to meet and chat to fellow bloggers whislt indulging in plenty of tea and pastries to help fuel our creativity. Yum! 

image courtesy of Search Laboratory

For the activities we were split into to three groups. My groups first activity was modern calligraphy. 

 The class was led by Suzie who is a very talented Calligrapher and teaches classes at Tea & Crafting in Camden. She is super friendly and patient, which was a godsend as I am definitely not a natural Calligrapher. 

I’m determined to practice though as this is a skill I would love to have. We were able to take home the supplies to practice at home courtesy of Suzie’s high end stationers business A-liaise.co.uk. Here you can find all the calligraphy equipment you should need including some pretty funky looking neon inks. She also offers a hand written calligraphy service for wedding invitations etc. 

Our next activity was Mindful Origami. The class was lead by Samual Tsang who is the author of The book of Mindful Origami (available from Amazon) and brains and talent behind Sesames.co.uk hand crafted paper origami floral bouquets. 

The picture below shows a tulip bouquet but he is able to create so many other variations of flower that I urge you to check out his gallery in the link above. 


Now your probably thinking what the hell is mindful origami? 

I would describe it as using the art form of origami as a way of decluttering the mind and focusing on positive thoughts. You can find more about it though in Samual’s book. 

Our last activity was block printing. This was so much fun and is a simple yet effective way of decorating. Depending on the paint you used it can be done on most mediums including fabric, wood, card and even coated card like on our file boxes we created. 

I decided to print little lipsticks on mine. I’m very pleased with how they turned out. 

image courtesy of Search Laboratory

The class was led by Jane, founder of tea and crafting workshops. Located in Camden they offer all manor of workshops ranging from knitting, cake decorating, weaving, calligraphy, paper cutting and much more. They even offer hen parties. 

Of course I couldn’t fail to mention the events organisers from search laboratory, especially Jenny who invited me after meeting her at last weeks #bloggersball, and their sponsors Viking-direct. Viking are one of the UK’s largest stationary and office suppliers. They are also a great place to find and wide range of crafting supplies and supplied us all with a goody bag so we can try out some more crafting at home. 

I have an offer code to share with you that will save you 15% off any future purchase from A-Laise.co.uk. Neon coloured calligraphy anyone? Yes please! 

It is SUPER15

This is valid until the end of August

All that’s left to say is a huge thank you to everyone involved in organising this event. It was such fun and has really inspired me to try out some different crafts. 

*Featured image credit – Search Laboratory

Saturated Colour’s #eSCexmeetup 

Yesterday I was one of several Essex based bloggers who had the opportunity to attend the #eSCexbbmeetup. The event was hosted by Essex’s very own independent cosmetic brand Saturated Colour

Specialising in innovative lip products Sarurated Colour was launched in 2015, previously under the name of Kiss Cosmetics. 

Creator Danielle Fenwick has focused on creating high quality lip products that remain at affordable prices. The brand is also 100% cruelty free with some products even being suitable for vegans. 


During the Event we had the opportunity to take part in a lip art competition. Alas I didn’t win But it did mean we had the chance to have a good old play with many of the products. 

The products I used to create my ombré lip look are listed in the picture below. 



So far I am really impressed with all the products  I have tried. Everything is comfortable to wear, even the Make Me Matte, an ingenious product that will transform any lipstick into a matte finish. 
We also had the chance to chat with other bloggers whislt enjoying some buffet and mocktails. Yum!


We all went home with a goody bag of personally selected products to try out at home, including some coconut oil from vita coco, who sponsored the event. 

I’m promised a sweep of sheerstick is perfect for busy mums like myself. 


Off course I also did a tiny little bit of shopping whilst I was there. Well with a 3 for 2 offer I couldn’t not! I shall do a post later on with swatches and I depth review. 

Thank you to the lovely ladies at Saturated colour for inviting me, it was a very fun afternoon. 

Bye for now, Katy x

Lush Mothers Day | What’s instore? 

A couple of weeks back I attended another bloggers evening at my local lush store. I love these evening as they are so much fun and consider myself very lucky to be regularly invited.

The theme on this occasion was Mothers Day. We got to check out all the new limited edition products, have a play and even make our own Bathbomb. 

  

I thought it would be fun to share some of my favourite products from the range. 

  Rose Bombshell £3.95
 
This smells just like Lush’s rose jam shower gel, so if your a fan of that you will love this. 

As it fizzes away in your bath it turns the water a gorgeous shade of pink and releases yellow rose petals from its centre.  

 
This does have a strong floral scent though not in an old lady way. The addition of Sicilian lemon oil keeps it fresh.  

Lady Bird Bubble Bar £3.95

  
This has to be the cutest looking product ever released by Lush. I haven’t actually used mine yet as I’m reluctant to part with it. 

It’s peppermint scent is currently making by bedroom smell nice though. 

Flowering Tea Bubble Bar £4.95 

 
I am a huge tea drinker so the idea behind this product I love. It’s actually shaped like a teabag which looks ridiculously cute and has a very subtle lustre to it.

 On first sniff though I wasn’t a fan of the smell. It seemed very strong. Once in the bath though it is a light floral scent that is actually quite lovely. 

As this is a reusable bubble bar you are also going to get a good few baths out of it. 

This Sunflower bubble bar is huge! It has a fruity floral fragrance thanks to the inclusion of sunflower petals and Sicilian lemon oil. 

This is a very exclusive product as it is only available as part of the Mothers Day gift sets. The smallest set Ladybird retails for £15.50. 

Yes I know. Slightly annoying! I’m so tempted though. 

  
  
So those are my stand out products from this years mother day range. I feel the products developers have been very creative this year. A lot of the products actually look too good to use straight away. Maybe that’s my secret inner border speaking though?

Have you tried any of these products yet? 

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The Essex Wine School – Brentwood Launch Evening

This write up is long overdue, but better late than never I suppose. Maybe?? 

A little over a week ago I had the opportunity to attend a taster evening showcasing the launch of The Essex Wine School in Brentwood. My husband joined me for the evening which was great as we don’t get to go out for the evening together very often. Yup perils of being a parent. This was the perfect date night. 

 
 The Essex Wine School is run by Neil Bull, a WSET (wine & spirit education trust) approved provider. His enthusiasm makes for a fun evening educating attendees about wine that is not just of high quality but accessable and affordable too. 

Classes are held in Chelmsford and Colchester with Brentwood launching as a new venue at the Essex Arms. 

We had a taster of some of the different courses available which meant we tasted a champagne, wine and Gin. We were also treated to a tasty buffet. 

Courses vary from a wine tour, cheese and wine pairing or gin tasting to Christmas champagne, port and cheese matching. 2016 will also see the addition of a beer and food pairing class. For the full program of upcoming evenings and how to book then head in the direction of their website Essexwineschool.com. Courses start from £22.50 for an introductory evening. 

As The Essex Wine School is not affiliated to any individual wine merchant or retailer you will not be sold wine or have your details past on to any third parties. 

This also means that the wines you will taste are the best quality wines from accessable sources. Don’t be surprised to see a wine from a local vineyard or from a national chain such as M&S or Waitrose. 

The highlight of the evening for me was tasting the Gin. I had never had Gin before and I’m not going to lie I was very nervous about trying it. 

  This was no “mother’s ruin”, no but a sophisticated artisan gin. A twist of orange peel elevated the appeal of the drink further. I may have to partake of a cheeky gin and tonic again in the future. 

If you are looking for the ideal Christmas gift for that tricky person they also offer gift vouchers.  

I was lucky to win a gift voucher on the evening. This is for the opportunity to attend another class. That’s a future date night with the hubby sorted. I just need to decided between wine and cheese or gin tasting. Though I actually am considering booking up on both anyway as they are such fun and entertaining evenings. 

Once again thank you to Neil for an entertaining evening and to Alice Langly for inviting us. 

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Lush’s Halloween & Christmas Launch Evening

Yesterday I had the opportunity to attend the Halloween and Christmas blogger event at my local lush store. The Lush Christmas launch has to be my favourite time of year at Lush. The products are so exciting, even returning old favourites have had little tweaks to them. Expect lots of colour, glitter and even products with sounds elements. Yes you can have a bath inspired by the sound of a crackling fire!

As ever the team at Lush were super knowledgeable about every single product launched, no crib sheets either! There enthusiasm and passion for Lush products is clearly evident.

So let’s have a peek at some of those goodies.

My top Bubble bar picks include Holly Golightly, Peeping Santa and Five Gold Rings. 

Holly Golightly Bubble Bar

 

This is a fairly grown up sent. Containing Patchouli, Lime, Cinnamon Leaf and orange oil this really does smell of Chrismas. Expect a gorgously intense green bath with some added sparkle.

Peeping Santa Bubble Bar

Do you like the scent of strawberries? This little cutie packs a punch and is super nourishing thanks to the layer of Shea butter.  Can we just take a moment to appriciate how amazing the colour it will turn the bath water.


Five Gold Rings is Inspired by the classic christmas carol 12 days of christmas. I love the idea of this bubble bar as you can actually get 5 baths out of one product if you use one ring per bath.

This is a visually pleasing product with a lovely light vanilla and tonka fragrance. 
Next up my top bath bomb picks are;  Cinders, Father Christmas and Lord of Misrule.

Cinders Bath Bomb

Remember I eluded to a a crackling fireside inspired bath? Well this bath bomb may be small but it don’t let that dissolution you.

Expect a visually spectacular orange coloured bath that actually smokes and crackles. Oh and it has a pretty fab hot fruit punch scent as well.

Lord of Misrule Bath Bomb

This bath bomb is just beautiful, check this little demo out below. Fans or Lord of Misrule show gel will love this one.


I had this bath bomb as a christmas gift from my son last year. It has a lovely sweet but not too sweet scent and provided a gorgous coloured bath. I won’t ruin this one for you as it’s not what you expect.

Father Christmas Bath Bomb

My Top picks from the rest include Sants’s Belly shower jelly, Snakes & Ladders fun, Old Father Time soap and the daddy of Chrismas selection boxes 12 Days of Christmas which includes a selection of 12 of the christmas limited edition products.

Santa’s Belly Shower Jelly

Love apple scents and red wine? This one is for you. Oh and how cute are those stars.

Snakes & Ladders Fun

Lovers of play dough will love this. it doubles up as soap and shampoo and not to mention some modelling fun. We have has snowman fun in the past and the black section made a big mess so I would definately opt for this one over that.

Old Father Time Soap

I love both of these soaps and would love to have the whole round. It’s not just a bit of soap they’re a work of art. They both smell fab aswell.

 

12 days of christmas

I would love to own this bit I couldn’t warrant spending £49.95 on it myself, but if you can and know a Lush fan this would make an amazing gift

This is just a small selection of the christmas products recently launched at Lush. To feature them all on the blog would probably bore you to death so if you want to see more then pop in to you local Lush store if you get the chance.

I was lucky to receive a couple of products to take home which I will feature in review posts over thecoming  weeks so keep you eyes peeled for those.

Fow now I owe a huge thanks to the team at Lush for having me.

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The #BigBloggerConference 

Yesterday I was fortunate to be able to attend the much anticipated #BigBloggerConference. If you didn’t know already this event was organised by the @LDNMeetup twitter network. The trio of bloggers, Lauren, Jenny and Abigail have a talent for arranging excellent events that are to the benefit of both bloggers and brands. 

The conference was held at The Russell Square Hotel in Bloomsbury London. We were treated to a morning of educational blogging workshops with some excellent guest speakers, followed by a Brand Exhibition in the afternoon.

  
Elizerbeth Sellers a Pro Blogger and UK brand Ambassdor for Pinterest UK, talked to us about how Pinterest can be used as a tool to generate blog traffic. I could go on for an entire blog post about this as it was so interesting. 

Let’s just say I had been using Pinterest in totally the wrong way with regards to sharing my own content. Today I have spent all day fixing this, my boards are now organised, with well described pins and get this You can now pin directly from my blog to Pinterest hassle free. 

I was so excited I had a bit of a fangirl moment tweeting Elizabeth with my progress. She was lovely though and checked out my page and pointed me in the direction of how I can tweak it to improve it even more. Do check out her blog Rosalilium.Com, I’ve been having a good old read today and it’s great. S’mores Pie Recipe, yes please!

Next up we had a talk from Jasmine Charlotte about SEO and SMO. This girl knows her stuff, I knew a little bit about Search Engine Optimisation already but the idea of Social Media optimisation is something I knew nothing about. 
I loved her talk as I’m turning into a bit of a tech geek. I get as excited about the tech side of blogging as I do creating the content itself. Her blog Jasminecharlotte.com has lots of useful blogging tips post as well as some great lifestyle features. 

Lastly we had a talk from Sarah of TheProseccodiaries.com.com all about ways in which we could monetise our blogs. I know there is great debate about this at the moment as some people see blogging as a hobby and others would like to make a career of blogging, but it was interesting to know what opportunities you could have if you put the time and effort in to growing your blog. 

Even maintaining a small blog takes a lot of time and effort and not to forget site hosting fees so I be lying if I didn’t say I didn’t want to see any financial gain from it in the future. 

Tricky subject over we had lunch in Russell Square park. I met some lovely fellow Essex based bloggers who educated me on the new live streaming platform Periscope, I hadn’t a clue. I think I’m going to give it a go, maybe? We shall see If I have the guts – Eeek!

Lunch over we had the chance to attend the Brand exhibition. This was great fun, making  connections with brands, and going on a twitter scavenger hunt. This idea was inspired girls, well done! 

 

Bee Good Natural Skincare

 

Heaven Silver Bee Venom Masks from Deborah Mitchell

There was even the chance to have our hair done by the talented stylists from The Parlour London. 
Check out my braided crown of hair, this was perfect for keeping me cool as it was such a hot day.  

We were very lucky and came away with a goody bag as a result of our twitter scavenger hunt. I’m looking forward to trying out some of these goodies and sharing my thoughts about them here on the blog in the future. 

  

So all that’s left for me to say is a huge thanks to Lauren, Abigail and Jenny they arranged a super conference and I was honoured to be able to attend.