Summer Leather

Wednesday, July 31, 2013
Don't you just love how a leather piece can really add some edge to an outfit? I just purchased this faux leather jacket from H&M on Tuesday and I couldn't wait to show it off.

jacket: H&M
shirt: Nannette Leopore for JC Penny (now on clearance)
black jeans: old from Name Brand Clothing
shoes: Nike from Ross Dress for Less
Let me just say that I am so glad that I tried this jacket on in person because I almost bought it on-line and based off of the size guide I would have purchased a UK 16. However, when I saw the jacket in-person I instantly knew that the UK 16 would have been huge on me, and I got a UK 12 instead. Lesson learned: use the H&M website as a guideline for what I like, but wait to make purchases in- person.

Anyway, I've also been rocking my Topshop faux leather skirt this summer while the temperatures were hot (for UK standards) and I think it will be a great piece to transition into fall  paired with tights or leggings.

as seen here
I recently wore my skirt in London, but nobody snapped any pictures of my outfit, so here's a mock up so you can get the idea.
Summer leather in London

Are you rocking summer leather? How do you rock the look? Let me know in the comments below.

This post was inspired by the IFB Project #106: Summer Leather

What I'm Listening To: Two Door Cinema Club- What You Know

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Music festival season is in full swing here in the UK with daily outdoor concerts happening in London, Glastonbury just 3 weeks ago, and the Latitude Festival happening this weekend. So this week I was looking at some of the highlights from recent music festivals and found this band and now I can't get that guitar loop out of my head. This is a great summer fun song. Check it out!

Superhero Baby

Friday, July 19, 2013
When my little brother announced that him and his partner were expecting, I knew that I had to make something. So shortly thereafter I asked my brother to tell me him and his lady-friend's favorite color, superhero, and animal to jump start my crafty pattern search. After browsing tons of images on the interweb and ravelry, I decided that I would crochet a Captain America Shield blanket, some green sneakers, and knit a baby Thor hat with yarn that I already had on hand.

Captain America Baby Blanket-
I decided to make a Captain America blanket because he's the lady-friend's favorite superhero AND my brother is a military veteran. This blanket was inspired by SaralaAnne's blanket on Craftster. I started out using Lion Brand's Stratford Circle Afghan pattern but then I used the crochet round recommendations and star pattern recommended by Molly-Louise on Ravelry. The Boy was so jealous of this one, that I may have to make him his own later on.

Converse booties- My brother said that both him and his lady-friend like the color green, so naturally I decided that his baby will need a green pair of sneakers. I used the Converse bootie pattern from hillsmel on Craftster. I thought the pattern got a bit confusing at times, especially around the bottom of the foot area. And my shoes turned out rather large even though I sized down my needles. Hopefully the baby will fit into these before he's ready for ACTUAL shoes.

Thor helmet- Finally, my brother said that his favorite super hero is Thor and with the upcoming release of Thor 2 (November 8, 2013 in the US) I decided that this baby would need a Thor helmet. For this project, I just used knittybutton's free Vandal Helmet pattern and some silvery grey Caron Simply Soft. It's really hard to photograph, but it was super easy to knit and I think it turned out super cute!

And here I am showing off the hat:
red tank: Walmart
faux leather skirt: Topshop (available here)
Shoes: ancient
Angry Bird Socks: Spencer's (similar)

10 Summer Essentials

Wednesday, July 17, 2013
Summer is in full swing and the heat is on here in England. Although 80 degrees (Fahrenheit)  seems down-right cool back in the States, here in England with no A/C it is sweltering. So I've gathered a list of my top 10 essentials that I turn to when the temperature rises.

1. A trendy straw hat- Not only does a trendy straw hat protect you from the sun, I think it can also take an outfit from bland to hip in one easy step.

2. sunglasses- Lately I've been wearing my prescription glasses all the time (because I'm too lazy to put in my contacts). When I do venture out in my contact lenses, sunglasses are a MUST to protect my eyes from the sun. Cat-eye, John Lennon, and wayfarer sunglasses are very on-trend this summer.

3. t-shirts- I practically LIVE in t-shirts in the summer because they're funky and comfy. They're the perfect grab and go top.

4. shorts- When the temperatures rise, so do the hemlines of my pants. A printed pair of shorts is a great on-trend item to have in your closet.

5. sandals/ jellies- A pretty sandal is a great way to show off your summer pedicure, and a waterproof jelly shoe will add style to your outfit when you head to the beach.

6. The Little White Dress (LWD)- We've all heard of the little black dress, but for those hot summer nights the little white dress is this year's must have.

7. sunscreen- With the increased daylight it's more important than ever to protect your skin with an SPF 15 or above sunscreen. These days I start my day by applying Oil of Olay SPF 15 moisturizer and Burt's Bee's Sun Protecting Lip Balm twice a day. When I'm going out, I make sure to apply either a sheer moisturizer or BB Cream with SPF 30 as my base.

8. Neon nail polish- Summer is the perfect time to rock a bold, neon nail color. My neon of choice is Glo Pink this year.

9. Tea Tree Water- I picked up a bottle of Tea Tree Water at Lush on a recent holiday and it has been a life saver for the summer. I love this toner because it hydrates my skin without drying it out and it has antibacterial and antiseptic properties to prevent breakouts.

10. drinks- When it's hot outside our bodies tend to loose a lot of fluid, so it's important to hydrate regularly. While my main go-to drink is good ol' H20, when I want an adult beverage I've become a fan of Joe's cocktails and Pimm's with lemonade.

What are you're essentials in the summer? Let me know in the comments below.

This post was inspired by the IFB Project#104: Share Your Summer Essentials

What's Making Me Laugh: Will Smith on the Graham Norton Show

Saturday, July 6, 2013

How many of you have been waiting for a Fresh Prince of Bel Air reunion since, went off the air!? Well, not too long ago I happened to catch an episode of the comedy chat show, The Graham Norton show featuring Will and Jaden Smith and surprise cameo's from Will Smith's 1990's past. It's pretty awesome! Enjoy!

I Want to Ride My Bicycle, I Want to Ride My Bike

Friday, July 5, 2013
I had a short love affair with bikes as a child. Although I loved my tricycle when I was a tot, I was a late bloomer when it came to riding on two wheels- I only learned how to ride when I was 10 and shortly thereafter I decided that I was too old to travel by bicycle and began begging for car rides from my older neighbors. While I do enjoy hopping on an exercise bike every now and again, after a brief, traumatizing attempt to get reacquainted with bicycling in college, I have decided to retire from traveling by bicycle.
Dress: Jason Wu for Target (see ebay)
Earrings: Vera Wang for Kohl's (similar, similar in gold)

This post was inspired by the IFB Project #102: Biking Babes

4th of July Thursday

Thursday, July 4, 2013
Happy 4th of July/ American Independence Day to my American readers! I may not have celebrated this American holiday in the traditional way (there weren't any fireworks in my part of the UK), but I did get to celebrate by having a picnic in the village with The Boy followed by an evening screening of the HBO bio-pic, Behind the Candelabra- about the life of famed pianist, Liberachi. How did you celebrate today?
dress: Made by Me
belt: borrowed from another dress
shoes: Payless


My Favorite British Shows that My U.S. Friends Should Be Watching

Tuesday, July 2, 2013
Since moving to the UK, I've been sampling British TV shows to become more immersed in the British culture. While I'm sure most familiar with greats like Dr. Who (available here), Downton Abbey (available here), and Sherlock (available here), there are so many more British TV shows worthy of an American audience. Lucky for you, you don't have to travel all the way to England to watch some of my favorite shows because many of them are now available in the U.S. on Netflix, Hulu/ Hulu Plus and YouTube. Here are some of my favorites in no particular order:

8. Miranda

Written and staring the hilarious Miranda Hart, this show follows clumsy and single Miranda who works in a joke shop, is in love with her friend, Gary, and has a mother who is forever trying to marry her off.

7. Pramface

This comedy follows the lives of 16 year old, Jamie, and 18 year old, Laura who becomes pregnant after a drunken one-night stand.

6. Inbetweeners (UK) and

A hilarious comedy about a group of four high-school aged friends coming of age in suburban England.

5. Spaced and

We all know Simon Pegg and Nick Frost from Shawn of the Dead. But before Shawn of the Dead, the duo starred in the TV show, Spaced. This show is about two twenty-somethings who pretend to be a couple so that they can rent a London apartment. This show is filled with pop culture and sci-fi references. A must watch for any Shawn of the Dead fan.

4. Shameless (U.K) and

Before James McAvoy was an Oscar winner, he was on the TV show Shameless with his real-life wife, Anne-Marie Duff. Similar to the U.S. adaptation, this show follows the Gallagher family who live in the slums of Manchester.

3. The I.T. Crowd and

This comedy follows a pair of basement dwelling dweebs and their social climbing 'manager' as they face off against their tech illiterate bosses. This is classic!

2. Call The Midwife

This drama is sent in the 1950s in London's East End and follows the lives of new midwife, Jenny Lee, and the colleagues and nuns she works with (you may also recognize Miranda Hart from Miranda in this cast).

1. The Great British Sewing Bee
Episode 1-

In this reality series amateur sewers complete challenges in order to be named Britain's best home sewer. The show also features brief mini-tutorials to encourage it's audience to complete their own sewing projects. Amongst the cast is Tilly of the blog Tilly and the Buttons.

Also worth mentioning:

Land Girls (I haven't watched this yet, but it's in my Instant Queue)

The Fall (Ever wonder what happened to Gillian Anderson since the X-Files? Here she is.)

Luther (I've heard good things)

Being Human (UK) (I watched the first 2 seasons before I felt that this show 'jumped the shark'.)

Coming Soon:

Moone Boy

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