You've been pretty good to me 2010...

Friday, 31 December 2010

In the past 12 months, I...
  • visited Paris with my Mum & fell more head over heels in love with the place. Didn't think that was possible
  • finally went to Mildreds, the vegetarian restaurant in Soho that I was dying to try. It was amazing. We just ate starters & pudding. My favourites
  • got obsessed with Mad Men. Again
  • went to Winter Wonderland with Innu. Becoming our little annual Christmas tradition
  • got very excited that my best friend was pregnant*
  • gave into peer pressure & read "Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" books. Didn't expect to like them. Did
  • got a new job with my boss of 4 years ago - & had such fun working with him again
  • went to All Star Lanes with the family for my birthday & realised that I am awful at bowling but love it anyway
  • hung out loads with the coolest kid ever, aka my nephew Joe
  • went to the wedding of one of my closest friends & saw her marrying the love of her life
  • saw Placebo at Brixton Academy. Only knew about 2 songs - but they were amazing live
  • decided to take my love of baking more seriously - exciting plans for 2011, hopefully with one of my good friends!
  • bought our first Christmas tree since moving in with the OH
  • discovered Indian restaurant Tayyabs. There's a reason why there are queues out of the door for that place. I'll be dragging the OH there in the NY
But although 2010 has been a pretty good year, I cannot wait for 2011. So many things I want to experience, places I want to explore, ambitions to be met!

And a huge thank you for reading & commenting on my blog. I love reading your little messages. Hope you all have a fun night out - & happy 2011! - Louise x

*she gave birth yesterday to a little baby girl!

Some Christmas wrapping inspiration

Tuesday, 21 December 2010

I thought I'd share some creative and just amazingly inspiring Christmas wrapping inspiration from around the web today (most discovered via Pinterest) - if you haven't joined, do! Such a great treasure trove:
On the left, via Country Living (with cute vintage card wallet tutorial) & on the right, via Cakies (one of my recent and much loved blog finds)

On the left, via Abrams & the photo on the right has been sourced from Fossil.Life.Style

Photo on the left is courtesy of Dress, Design & Decor & on the right, the photo is from the lovely Poppytalk

Um, so although I was very inspired by the photos above, my creativity has been so far limited to buying some pretty Orla Kiely paper and yellow ribbon (see pic above). Creativity fail me thinks, but hey, I still have about 10 more presents to wrap. I can turn this thing around ;)

Hope you're all enjoying the run up to Christmas - and really hope you all manage to get home in time for Christmas Day. It's been horrible hearing of some people's travel nightmares.

And if the stress does get too much - I thoroughly recommend putting your feet up with a big mug of hot chocolate, a warm mince pie and cheesey Christmas movies. It works a treat for me - Louise x

Lemon meringue cupcakes

Saturday, 18 December 2010

I was due to go to my friend's for a cute afternoon tea party but the snow was coming down so thick and fast that we decided to cancel. Which left me with 20 brownies and 10 lemon meringue cupcakes. I would have taken some photos of the brownies but, well, they were our lunch - but we did decide to leave the cupcakes for dessert tonight so here's a little peak at them.

They are ridiculously easy to make. The only tricky part (for me) is the icing. I'm not great at it. But they taste gooooood which of course is the main thing.

Here's the recipe if you fancy doing some baking this weekend. The only recommendation I do have is to wait for the cupcakes to completely cool before piping the meringue onto the top - Louise x

Hey stylish lady!

Friday, 17 December 2010

I thought it might be fun to share a blog that I recently came across that is supplying me with a giddying amount of style inspiration. The blog is called Fancy Treehouse (discovered via Lookbook).

I used to be a little obsessed with whatever the latest trends were (I cringed a little typing that). I guess with age comes a lot more confidence about what someone wants to wear - and I'm drawn more and more to blogs that showcase someone's very individual and personal style. This blog is one of those. Coury's style is just brilliant. Love. What style blogs are currently inspiring you? - Louise x

P.S. Having such a fun day baking for my friend's afternoon tea party tomorrow. Photos to follow. Hope you all have a great weekend.

Some words of wisdom for a Friday

Latest discovery...

Tuesday, 14 December 2010

I'm not quite sure how I stumbled upon Dujour magazine but I'm sure glad that I did. The styling & photography is to die for...

They feature cute home tours (something that I will never tire of)...

& include yummy sounding & looking recipes...

They've even got me wanting to search out some doilies to present my own baking on - aren't these 2 pictures above adorable?

Photography all from Dujour Magazine

Dressing for the holidays

Friday, 10 December 2010

It has been so much fun having this week off. I bought our first tree since moving in with the OH, had my friend and her son over for an inpromtu snowflake party and have been catching up on a lot of reading in our local coffee shop. I feel so revitalised after this little break! Below is our little tree rather simply decorated - but I'm going to start a tradition of buying a new decoration each year so that we can build up a cute collection.

Hope you all have a lovely weekend - Louise x

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

I'm pretty much in love with Donna Wilson's little creations, especially Rosie (the beauty on the left) who apparently "likes ladybirds and rainbow beetles, dislikes being on her own" and Rudie Raccoon who "loves rumaging through people's possesions, dislikes cats - they smell funny."

Isn't it such a lovely idea to include little fun details like this with each creature?

I've included a few other beauties below - am veeeery tempted to get the mittens as a little "from me, to me" present :) - Louise x

Best of the street

Friday, 3 December 2010

I absolutely love this look - it's totally relaxed plus she looks 1. warm, 2. comfy & 3. happy! I'm never going to be the kind of girl who sacrifices comfort for fashion so this, for me, is perfect ♥

I hope you all have a fun weekend planned. I'm heading out to buy our first Christmas tree since moving in together (exciting!) - and some pretty decorations, and then I just have to bake these lemon meringue cupcakes (found here). Ever since I found this recipe I can't stop thinking about them - Louise x

Photo via Jak & Jil

Penny Wincer

Wednesday, 1 December 2010

Some beautifully inspiring pictures from the very talented photographer, Penny Wincer.

It is my absolute dream to one day have my own little bakery/cafe so of course I absolutely adore these pictures! - Louise x

Gift Guide {Part 2}: For the creative souls in your life

Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Why not sign someone up for a course at the Papered Parlour? It's an independant craft venue based in Clapham, London. They have such a great range of affordable and fun classes (and on a side note, how fantastic is their website?)

Lomography Diana F+ Dreamer Camera from UO, £50 & Made at Home by Lisa Stickley, £16.99

Memorabilia notebook from Papermash, £5 & Patterened clipboards from Colloco, £2.95 each (I raved about patterened clipboards a while back here)

Knitting pattern for the above cowl/scarf, StaceyJoy, £3.64 & Mini sewing machine from John Lewis, £50 (I have this one in butter yellow and it really is so great for a small sewing machine - and not too pricey)

Hope you enjoy this week's gift guide! Are there any gift guides you'd like to see? If yes, pop a comment below - thanks! Louise x

I heart Free People's vintage collection

Friday, 26 November 2010

I know I usually have a Best of the Street post on a Friday but today I came across Free People's vintage collection and I adore it! Especially the styling they've used. So inspiring for a Friday! Hope your weekend is filled with fun - Louise x

Dream a little dream...

Wednesday, 24 November 2010

As regular readers of this blog will know, I took a little break from the blog earlier this year due to ill health which also rather painfully coincided with the OH losing his job. The OH has now found a new job which he loves and I'm on the mend and back in the workplace - which rather excitingly means that we can revisit our plans to do up the flat!

The first rooms to tackle have to be the kitchen and the bathroom. I've been saving any images that grab me for both rooms, but I thought I'd start by sharing the ones of my dream kitchen (kitchens have proved to be much more exciting than bathrooms!)

Images via Interiors Porn, Living Etc, Desire to Inspire, Apartment Therapy, Emma's Designblogg, The Selby & The Seventy Tree

Gift Guide {Part 1}: For the home lovers

Monday, 22 November 2010

If, like me, you always have tons of great gift ideas throughout the year - and then promptly forget every one of these great ideas in the run up to Christmas, then I'm hoping that my little gift guides might be able to help.

I'll be posting one a week. The first is for the people in your life who are always looking for new little trinkets to add to their homes.

All of these are under £20 in the hope that I'm not the only one watching the pennies this holiday...

Bunting Cushion Cover from UO, £20 & Union Jack Doormat also from UO, £16

English Breakfast print from Tea & Ceremony, £12 & Inside Out Bowl from Anthropologie, £8

Retro Storage Container from Oliver Bonas, £12.95 & Lovely Jubbly Mug from Andrew Tanner Designs. £11.50

Best of the Street

Friday, 19 November 2010

I'm finally beginning to feel normal again. It's so nice to wake up and actually feel energised! I feel all ready for the weekend now - perfect timing!

I hope you all have a lovely few days off work. Any plans? I may go to see the René Gruau exhibtion at Somerset House. His illustrations are so magical...

So here are my picks for best of the street for this week. I have to say that my favourite is the lady in the bottom left picture - oh the draping and colours of that dress!

Images via Altamira, Hanneli, Stockholm StreetStyle & The Sartorialist

Wild thing... I think I love ya

Wednesday, 17 November 2010

I am sooo pleased that leopard print is everywhere at the moment...
Jason Wu styles his pretty animal print dress with simple black courts and dark rimmed specs (secretary chic anyone?) and Meredith Melling Burke (from US Vogue) goes preppy with her print. Love.

And then Zara has made all my dreams come true by designing this gorgeous coat and skirt - and styling them beautifully with all black. Puuurfect.

4 pretty mood boosters

Tuesday, 16 November 2010

The best way to describe how I'm feeling today is blurgh (I can feel a cold coming on...) so I thought it was time to post some things that are currently making me smile and feel a little less sorry for myself ;)

1. This pretty in pink shake bar (via here)

2. 'i love you' notes (via here)
3. Al fresco spring suppers (via here)

4. Bunting will surely be everywhere in the UK now that Kate and Wills are tying the knot and these hearts are very sweet (via here)

Swedish Home

Monday, 15 November 2010

I absolutely love this charming Swedish home. It looks so cosy with the fire, throws and the stacks of books and CDs. Perfect house tour for a chilly day.

Hope you had a lovely weekend. Me and the OH went out on Saturday to this really nice pub in Camberwell to celebrate a friend's new job. Never been there before, definitely worth a few drinks if you're in the area (and the food looked pretty great too). I was absolutely gutted to miss the Midcentury Modern show in nearby Dulwich (did any of you make it?) but did manage to get down to see my sister and her hubbie for a big Sunday pub lunch here. Another great pub I might add! This weekend was all about the pubs :)

Images via Hus & Hem

Best of the Street

Friday, 12 November 2010

Hello lovelies, I'm back from Manchester just in time to post my three favourites from the streetstyle blogs this week:

1) Sadly it is way too cold for bear legs here in London, but the minute spring comes around, I'm going to be referring to this picture for inspiration.

I love the mix of materials: the delicate, feminine dress juxtaposed with the heavier wool/tweed blazer and finished off with a pair of beautiful camel loafers. And I adore her hair colour (yes, I'm still very tempted to go red!)

2) I read somewhere that leopard print is now considered a neutral. Case in point above.

3) Who says brown is boring? Certainly not me...