Workwear for Hourglass Figures | Tailored Coat


Every girl should have a good quality coat in their work wardrobe. No matter what you're wearing underneath I find a great coat will always give you more confidence. For hourglass girls the number one option should be a tailored coat which cinches in at the waist with simple detailing i.e. no bulky collars. You simply cannot beat it, believe me I've tried!

My current favourite is this gorgeous double breasted, checked coat from Michael Kors. It has a slight cinched waist built in but I can add further definition with the belt. The pleating is wide rather than narrow and it goes all the way around the base which means I don't get any pull around the hips or bum areas. The shoulders are also slightly padded which emphasises my waist even further. For me it's the perfect winter coat.

I was lucky enough to pick this up at a local TK Maxx but there are some great cheaper alternatives on the High Street. Oasis and Debenhams have some beauties this year so get out there and start shopping!

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Outfit | Aztec Print


Jeans Mango | Cardigan Debenhams | Top Oasis | Boots Clarks*

With winter well and truly on it's way I can feel myself reaching for chunky knits and jeans more and more. Basic I know but oh so cosy! And who could resist this cardigan, isn't it a beaut? I have a few waterfall styled cardi's but this aztec one is my current favourite; it's just so versatile. The jeans were a purchase from last year but I didn't feel confident enough to wear them as they're really skinny. I tend to be a simple blue denim girl but this wax pair may have just converted me. They're surprisingly comfortable and I've had a few compliments wearing them which is always a good sign.

I've been looking for a black heeled pair of boots that are still suitable over the winter months for ages and these ones are in a word - perfect! I love the mix of leather and suede with the chunky buckle detailing and think they'll go great with trousers or skirts and dresses. If a good quality pair of boots are your thing, then I'd definitely recommend getting yourself over to the Clarks website. They have 20% off any purchase over £70 at the moment too.

Anyway I'm off to start packing for a work trip to Oslo. I've no idea what I'm going to wear yet so I better get started! Hope you have a relaxing Sunday guys.

Laura x

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Event | Rainbow Rooms International




Last week I popped along to an event at Rainbow Rooms International in Glasgows Royal Exchange Square to see their new HD brow and express beauty services. After catching up with some blogger friends over chocolates and processo (evidently my last drink of the year!) I met Lesley Wilks, a celebrity MUA, who told me all about the new express services on offer from manicures to makeup and hair treatments. Perfect for a quick lunchtime treat!
 
 
There were demonstrations of each of the services and my friend Jules was lucky enough to get picked for HD brows. While she was being tweezed, waxed and threaded to perfection I started chatting to David the salon director. I mentioned that I am getting married in Mexico and am a little unsure how to style my hair. He invited me upstairs to the salon to have a consultation and try some looks.
 
If I'm honest I expected to be paired up with one of the friendly hair stylists on the floor but David sat me down and began asking me questions about my dress. After a quick discussion he set about playing with different styles to show me how best to wear my hair on the day. It was honestly the most helpful discussion I've ever had about my hair.
 
I like the idea of long flowing curls but with the heat and humidity David explained that they won't last the day and a partial or full up do would be best. Apart from completely changing my mind about what sort of hair style I want for the wedding (which I'm keeping a secret) I learnt that I have an oval face which doesn't suit my hair pulled tightly back. Instead it's much more flattering if I back comb a little prior to tying up. I also learnt that my old ombre colouring hadn't damaged my hair as much as I had thought and using Nioxim products which are specific for fine or thinning hair will help to thicken it and treat my scalp.
 
 
David then showed me several simple, quick styles to tie my hair up using a small elastic hair tie and three of four hair pins, including a roll up and a gorgeous little bob! I felt like such a lucky lady to learn so many practical tips and have wedding hair advice in one night. Some of my fellow bloggers had some beautiful styles done but I really think I got something a little special! When I went back downstairs Jules eyebrows were finished and she looked amazing. So much so that I booked myself in for an HD brows treatment and had a patch test done on the night.
 
I've been trying to grow out my brows recently so it's been about three months since I've had them waxed - you have been warned. The beauty therapist Sarah talked over what shape and colour I'm looking to achieve - a natural brow with a slight arch - and then set to work! The tinting, waxing, plucking and trimming was all fine. Threading on the other hand is a little more painful if you've never had it done before like me but is so worth it for the final result. The look was finished with some HD eyebrow pencil and powders.
 
 
I have to say the difference after one treatment was quite striking. I had a lot more hairs than I realised and once they had been tinted my eyebrows looked much fuller. I am utterly in love! I need some more growth on one side before Sarah can get the final shape I'm after so I'll need a few more treatments but she thinks they'll be perfect by the time the wedding comes round. Happy days!
 
Do you want the perfect brow? If so, I'd highly recommend popping into Rainbow Rooms International for their HD Brow treatment. You could even treat yourself to a wee massage or new hair style while you're there!

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To drink or not to drink...

Since the beginning of November I've been working on a new exercise and eating regime. It's going ok so far although being on holiday hasn't exactly helped with my motivation. I've spend lots of time with friends and family in Inverness this week which meant a few little extras passed my lips! I feel like I could definitely do better so I've decided to cut out alcohol for the rest of the year...



Not drinking isn't something I find particularly difficult and I regularly go months without any alcohol but I have never abstained over the entire festive period. The strange thing is I feel a little embarrassed about it. How crazy is that? I have a few nights out planned between now and Christmas and I already know some people are going to find my sobriety unacceptable behaviour. It's going to go one of two ways: I'll be constantly asked what's wrong with me, why am I being boring etc or they'll make it their mission to change my mind, like some sort of Christmas Challenge.

I'm not trying to be boring the truth of the matter is I really don't enjoy drinking that much. I'm lucky in that I've never had a hangover but drinking just doesn't make me feel good and my teeth always really hurt the next day. Those are things I can certainly do without. 

Why not join me this Christmas and paint the town with a virgin cosmopolitan in your hand. Who knows you might even have more fun!

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Christmas Gifts | For Beauty Lovers

If you're anything like me you have plenty friends and family who love some beauty goodies at Christmas time. The shops are always filled with great offers in the run up to the festive season and this year's no different. Here's my top picks for the beauty lover in your life....

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 

There's a reason number one is Benefit's Cheeky Sweet Spot, it's top of my Christmas wishlist! I mean who doesn't want Benefit's best blushers and bronzers in one handy case? At £29.50 I think it's an absolute steal too, you can be over £20 for one of these little beauties...

Anyone who knows me won't be surprised to see Bobbi Brown and Clinique made the cut. I love both these brands. This palette will take me through the whole party season with it's mix of shimmer and matte eyeshadows and 8 rich lipsticks from nudes to a gorgeous dark cherry shade. Clinique have also surpassed themselves this season with some fantastic gift sets at really affordable prices. My current favourites are the Black Honey Beauty set and Whole Lotta Chubby - which Eric bought me as an early present! All four shades are really wearable, I'd highly recommend this as a gift for someone.

YSL have some great selections this year too. My favourite set contains the infamous Touché éclat - a must buy if you haven't tried it yet - and the fantastic Babydoll mascara. I own both these products and couldn't praise them enough, the highlighter is simply the best in the business and I get lashes for days with this mascara. Need I say more?

You can't have a beauty lovers guide without some quality brushes. Like many of you I love Real Techniques but there are other brands with equally fantastic brushes and one that stands out for me is Bare Minerals. This set includes 5 brushes for your eyes and face in a rather pretty bright red case with gold detailing. At £49 this is more expensive than the other gift sets I've picked but individually these brushes retail at over £90 so I think it's a good investment.

So there you have it my beauty picks this Christmas! Let me know if you have any favourite makeup sets this season.

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Recipe | Cheese Scones

A recipe for homemade cheese scones

A few weeks ago I attended a fun filled day of baking with some of my fellow scottish bloggers. When I got home I made some savoury cheese scones that went down a storm with my friends and family. I've made them a few times since and I think they're my new favourite treat. They taste great by themselves but try dipping them in homemade soup, oh my word!

Ingredients

8 oz plain flour
10 oz wholemeal flour
4 oz grana padano cheese
8 oz mature cheddar
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
400 mL milk
1 egg

Recipe

1. Preheat oven to 220oC and line a baking tray with baking paper.
2.Add the flour, mature cheddar, baking powder, salt and about half the grana padano cheese to a bowl and mix to combine.
3. Add the milk gradually to the mixture and mix until well combined then tip onto a floured surface and knead until the mixture comes together to form a soft dough.
4. Roll out the mixture so it's about 1 inch thick and cut into scones, I tend to get about 12 from this mixture.
5. Brush each scone top with beaten egg, taking care not to get any on the edges and then sprinkle the leftover cheese.
6. Place into the oven for 12-15 mins, until the tops look brown and the scones have risen. Allow to cool and then store in an airtight container for up to 5 days.

And there you have it an incredibly easy peasy recipe that makes the tastiest scones you'e ever tried! I promise you won't be disappointed I mean who doesn't like a homemade scone? Let me know if you give these a try.

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Workwear for Hourglass Figures | Peplum


Close up peplum style for hourglass figures


No matter what your shape, peplum is a style I think every girl should invest in. It's just such a flattering design. I know lots of people worry that peplum tops and dresses will add even more bulk to your hips but I promise you it really doesn't! Instead the additional material helps to emphasise beautiful curves or even creates the illusion of them for those with a gorgeous petite frame. Personally I think this style looks great on hourglass and pear figures as it can really help balance out your hips and emphasise a smaller waist.

This beauty of a dress is actually a Mango purchase from a few years ago. It's made from a wool mix so I tend to keep it more for winter time and can you believe I forgot I had it! No idea how that happened. I love the deep purple colour and subtle black check design. Unbelievably I used to think this was too risky for work  as it hugged my shape but I'm obviously older and wiser now....

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2014 Alternate Advent Calendars

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6

Everybody loves a good chocolate advent calendar but if you are trying to step away from sweets and treats, there are plenty of options to make your heart flutter each morning.

If beauty products are your weak point then the return of Benefit's sell out calendar is a must buy. It's filled with Benefit's beauty favourites including Porefessional, They're Real mascara, High Beam and Fake Up. You're one lucky lady if you wake up to this on 1st December! For the girl who likes a mix of beauty and skincare, No7 and Bodyshop calendars are some excellent options. They're both great value for money and contain a huge array of products including body lotions, face masks, creams and oils with sample sizes up to 60 mL

This year's Topshop calendar features 24 doors filled with a daily dose of jewellery, amazing or what? The calendar contains twelve pairs of earrings, eight charm necklaces and four bracelets in a mix of gold and silver. An ultimate gift for the little girl in you...

Ciate's calendar has 23 gorgeous mini nail polishes and one full size pot. As always there is a selection of colours from bold and bright to more subtle shades and effect polishes including metallics and glitters. At £50 it is one of the more expensive options but if you are quick you can bag yourself last years one at TK Maxx.

I've been lucky enough to get a Yankee candle calendar this year so I've not looked into that one too much. I'm hoping it's filled with their seasonal favourites like Snowflake Cookie and Christmas Cookie. You can't go wrong with a good candle!

Which one's your favourite?

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Wedding Plans | Getting back into shape

Motivation: It hurts now, but one day it'll be your warm up.

With less than 6 months to go until the big day, my thoughts have turned to getting myself into shape. Under no circumstances would I class myself as someone who is overweight or unhealthy but I am about 15 lbs heavier than I used to be. I carry all of the excess weight around my thighs and bum and have the joys of both cellulite and stretch marks.  Roll that all up and you have one increasingly unhappy, uncomfortable lady.

With our Mexican wedding, I have the added bonus of spending time in swimwear around family and friends and I know I'll be self consious if I don't get back to my former self. I'm not doing it for them though, I really want to look and feel my best. So what's my plan? Exercise, exercise, exercise!!!

so worth it

Eric is a bit of a gym junkie so I'm lucky he's offered to help get me back to feeling confident in myself. We've decided on a mix of cardio and weight training with lots of focus of interval training and circuits. Not my favourites I have to say but I know they get results. He's mixed it up enough to keep me interested so I'm hoping I can stick it out! The plan is to do four workouts a week at the moment and then add another one or two more as I build up strength. Eeeek!!!

For extra motivation my plan is to do a post every week or so on my progress. I'll mix it up with talking about how my workouts are going and my new food plan. I've taken some before pics for comparisons too, whether I ever have the confidence to put them up on here is another story...

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