12 March 2018


I mean it when I say that I know how truly lucky I am to have an entire space of our home dedicated to being just mine. This is a space that I don't have to compromise on decor or furniture, a place I can house my trinkets, worldly goods and excessive coat collection. Most importantly, my new room is a tranquil space for me to work.

For a bit of back story, during the last 5 years of my time living in the North West, I rented my own flat. Man I loved that place. And then, I met my boyfriend, Adam - he lived with his brother at the time, we knew we wanted to live together on our own, but our flat leases didn't match up therefore it made sense for me to move in with them until the time came to go our separate ways. This was last summer and I talked about it here.

When Adam and I were looking at properties to move into, we had 2 deal breakers:

 1. It had to have space for Adam to have an office to run his business 
 2. It had to have space for my family to come and visit/stay over

I never dreamed that we'd find the perfect place which accommodates both requirements and gives us two separate spaces to be ourselves, no interruptions. For me, I can explode as much colour as I like, for him he can have a an all black erry'thing man cave that smells of boys.

In the shared rooms of our home, it's a total merge of both our styles and i'll be honest, i've been a little more 'grown up' with my interior decoration aesthetic. In my new room, i've regressed back to the real Hollie. Most of the chaos you see in my new office is a mix of things that once lived in my bedroom at my parents house and my old flat. Colour! Eastern inspired bits and bobs and a total miss match vibe. 

The room is quite oddly shaped with lots of sloping ceilings and indents so I had to be quite creative with the space. As this room is ultimately, also a guest bedroom, it needed the space to fit a bed when required. As with all these situations, this room is a work in progress. For now, it is a comfortable multi-use space. 

And the story of this print? Well, many years ago, there was a boy I fancied. Like, really fancied. His name was Joe and he was a few years above me at school. When I was in year 8, he was in year 11, he was my maths tutor (anyone who knows me will know how horrendous I am at maths) He told me one night on MSN, that his favourite piece of art was 'The Kiss' by Gustav Klimt. After a quick Google search, I told him how strange that was, because it was my favourite piece of art too. Eek. Truth be told I did really like the piece and have loved it ever since. It's become really commercialised now, you can find a recreation of it almost anywhere, but I want to make it clear, I liked it before the hype. Haha.

Anyway, I knew that this particular piece of art needed a place in my new office. So when the team at photowall kindly got in touch to see if i'd like to try our their service, I immediately KNEW that The Kiss would be the print I chose. 

So who are photowall? Well, photowall are a company passionate about design - they create wall murals, photo wallpapers and canvas prints. If you want to create a focal point in your home the photowall site has thousands of images to choose from and you can even upload your own image.

The whole process from idea to canvas is so easy to follow and my canvas arrived within 3 days of ordering! The Kiss print and the build materials came in a large rectangle box with everything I needed to assemble my print! The assembly process was so, so easy. You simply attach 4 pre adhesive wooden plinths to your canvas print and tighten up some corner brackets to make your canvas taught. SO EASY. I am pretty rubbish at home DIY but even I could master this. If you're looking for a new piece of art for your home, use my code below for 20% off your first photowall order!

(Code is available for 30 days so don't wait!)

* Post contains gifted items from photowall


6 March 2018


Wearing: Stretch Concealer | Cloudpaint's in 'Beam' and 'Dusk' | 'Crush' Generation G lip colour | Maybelline 'Great Lash' mascara 

There was a time when I really didn't understand the statement: 'Less is more' - for me, more was always more and when it came to my make-up, this was so obviously the case. My eyes would be heavily kohled with a smokey grey/green eyeshadow and my lips would be dramatic, more often on than not, i'd be wearing Vamp from Makeup Revolution or Heroine from MAC - And that was just the makeup I wore to school.

These days, unless i'm going out somewhere fancy, I simply don't have the time to pile on the makeup and if i'm quite honest it's just not a look I like on myself anymore. Instead, I call upon a more pared back look with the help of my favourite Glossier products.

I've previously talked about the products that turned me on to Glossier, as well as my thoughts on the phase 1 set. So when payday came around, I decided to break my bank account...again with some of the remaining Glossier products that I had yet to try.

I had been put off purchasing the Cloudpaint cream blushes because one review said they're teeny tiny and definitely not worth the money and another said that most of the product shoots out of the tube when you first open it and it is impossible to ever distribute a small amount.

So what changed my mind? Well, I was getting pretty bored of how powder formulas sat on my skin. I was pretty interested to see how the gel-cream Cloud-paint formula could help create dewy, flushed cheeks. I really struggled to decide on which shades i'd try, in the end I opted for the duo deal in 'Dusk' - a rosy, rust shade that I use as bronzer, and 'Beam' - a coral pink shade that dries matte. Both are subtle and give you a look reminiscent of a day spent on the beach.

L-R Balm Dot Com in 'Cherry' | Generation G lipstick in 'Crush' | Balm Dot Com in 'Rose'

Why am I spending £10 each on multiple lip balms? Hmm I know. Completely and utterly frivolous! But they are all different right? I have a Balm Dot Com affectionate. I wear the formula everyday. 
The latest editions to my collection are; Cherry - wow this reminds me so much of a doll I used to have named 'Baby All Gone' - she came with food to feed her that smelt of cherries. 

Cherry is a subtle tint of red that is fully buildable. 'Rose' is a translucent pop of pink, an easy, breezy everyday shade that smells of rain on rose petals. Lush. And finally, a summer holiday in a tube the coconut variant of the Balm Dot Com family, Coconut smells heavenly - not your typical sun lotion scent, more like NICE biscuits and is a clear balm so you can wear it anytime, anywhere. 


28 February 2018



Right now i'm consumed by the heady smell of fresh paint and the thick scent of new carpets. Bliss. I'd been waiting for this day for so long. The house had been on and then off and then on again and the process had taken so much longer than we expected, it got to the point where I was making myself feel ill with the stress of it. But alas, that's all in the past now - we're finally living in our new home. I've never felt prouder or happier and whilst there is still some way to go in terms of decorating, things are coming together pretty well. Even my mum and dad were pretty impressed with how we have it and they both say I have absolutely zero taste in home decor.

House move aside, amongst the manic month that has been February, I have made sure I had a full diary to keep busy whilst my life was in boxes. One of my 2018 new years resolutions was to see much more of the people I love - Though, as half of my life is split at the other side of the country, this can sometimes be a challenge however, I have adored having my nearest and dearest sat around my table eating brunch, or having a late night glass of wine with my best friend catching up on what's been going on. People are good for the soul and it has reminded me how proud of myself I am for setting up a new phase of my life in an unfamiliar city. (Yeah, I know it's been like 5 years now, but still!)


Podcast: Due to a change in work at the beginning of the year, my commute was extended, a journey that once took around 25 minutes now takes me 45 on a good day. I'm okay with that though because it gives me extra time to listen to my favourite podcasts. My latest discovery this month is (i'm sorry) by Dolly Alderton, yeah, yeah I know why don't I just be her already - but her latest podcast 'Love Stories (created in-conjunction with the release of her new book, but more on that later) is a celebration of love, passion, heartbreak and intimacy. My favourite episode is her frank conversation with the enigmatic and wonderful Cosmo Landesman. Cosmo speaks so beautifully about women and his experiences of love. I also thoroughly enjoyed hearing about his parents Fran and Jay who sound like they were really quite something.

Film:If you'd like to know an embarrassing fact about me, it's that the 50 Shades of Grey trilogy is a one of my guiltiest pleasures. Going to see the films has been a ritual myself and my best pal Hannah have done for the past 3 years. I recently saw '50 Shades Freed' and whilst it was so twee and cheesy, it was my favourite of the 3 films. Ana and Christian, the lead characters are more grown up and instead of being sleezy, it has more romantic storyline. One takeaway is that Ana's styling is on. point. It's chic and classic with a French vibe going on. 8/10 from me!


I laughed out loud Lucy Dunn's article 'You're not messy, it's your partner/dog/colleague that's messy.' - this part in-particular really resonated with me.

"My husband’s big thing is that he likes to put stuff where stuff doesn’t belong. So, electric drills on the top of kitchen cupboards, piles of paper tucked in among the cereal jars, etc. He is is totally incapable of putting – no, actually, he refuses to put – his smelly trainers away in the shoe cupboard."

This is my life living with Adam. I am constantly finding things in the wrong place and the most random stuff shoved in cupboards. It's usually the shoes strewn all over the living room, the washing overflowing out of the washer door, or the shampoo and conditioners stood with their lids off, tipped upside down in the shower - This isn't to mention the nails and screws and tools hidden in the cutlery drawer - It drives me insane!

Okay, so i'm not going to apologise but i've read 'Everything I Know About Love' and it was flipping amazing. The book, a debut novel by Dolly Alderton is a personal memoir which sees Dolly and her mates navigating love and life, loss and friendships. It had me nodding along (especially the parts about msn and the power of logging out and in again to make your crush notice you) and it also had me reaching for the tissues. Read this book - you won't regret it.

And finally, Anna Hart's article for The Pool, 'How Solo Travel Taught One Woman What She Wanted From A Relationship' was such a tonic to read - Often we see other people's holiday snaps depicting wide toothy smiles against a beautiful backdrop of the turquoise ocean, or a beautiful cityscape. Anna says it how it is

"We’re presented with a series of challenges, all the while being seemingly berated in an unfamiliar tongue... For travel illuminates the stark differences between us and our loved ones.""

Anna shares all the different couples she's witnessed whilst she's travelled alone, she's taken mental notes about all of them and thought about the ones that will last and why. A must read and such a well thought out piece.



As I mentioned in my ode to 50 Shades Freed above, I have become obsessed with Ana's styling and makeup. Now, i'm not sure if Dakota Johnson, who plays Ana has had some filler injections put in her lips to make them look so full, but they just look so plump and pink. I've been recreating her lip colour with a lipgloss from Burt's Bees. The shade I have is 'Evening Glow' and it was gifted to me in the Date Night box from Latest in Beauty (You can still purchase that box here if you're interested) Evening Glow is a gorgeous pearl finish shade of raspberry/plum that gives you perfectly just bitten lips, whats more... all of the ingredients are 100% natural.

Cream blushes are also a newly coveted product that i've been calling upon time and time again. My current favourite is by KIKO and is their Velvet Touch Cream Silk Blush in the shade, 04 'Hot Pink' - a pop of this beauty gives you dewy, healthy looking skin with a pink toned flush. Sure, it looks kinda scary in the bullet - but it's actually a really gorgeous and diverse colour.


I recently wrote about the beauty rituals that I do when i'm feeling grubby. Some of the newest editions to this routine include the NUXE 'Precious Scented Shower Oil' which just smells divine and leaves your skin baby soft and the Loccitane hand and nail cream in the 'Roses Et Reines' scent. Wow, this smells just like a rose garden after it's rained, it smells so luxe and beautiful not to mention how deeply nourishing it is for dry hands, or in my case hands dried out and parched by bleach. 


Oil based skincare is my favourite. And so i'm always on the look out for new oil based products to try. This month my hero product has been the 'Moroccan Rose Oil' from Dr Botanicals. I apply on naked skin straight out of the bath. Packed with Vitamin C, Vitamin A and Almond Oil - my skin feels softer and more radiant immediately after use. It's also worth noting that this facial oil not tested on animals.

I read somewhere that the classic Nivea cream produced in Germany is a dupe for Creme De La Mer skincare. Sounds good to me, so I picked up a pot for a few quid in Boots. This seriously thick, cream is what i've been basting my face in for the past couple of weeks. It takes ages to sink in and leaves my face looking more Casper-esc than normal but it certainly leaves my skin feeling soft and supple - sadly, i've yet to try Creme De La Mer skincare, so I couldn't tell you if it's a dead ringer but it does the job for me!


Over the course of February, i've been trying to work out what the undertone hue of my skin is. I've come to the conclusion that I must be neutral because silver and gold jewellery both look good against my skin, I suit almost any hair colour and my veins are both blue and green.

Anyhow when it comes to jewellery, i'm a mixed metal kind of gal and with this in mind i've recently been coveting a new bracelet from Browns family jewellers. Feel like you've seen the name before? See this post featuring the most beautiful earrings ever and so I was really excited to try a new piece from their collection.

The beautiful silver bracelet i'm talking about is from Vamp London at Browns Family Jewellers. It's a piece of jewellery i've been wearing not stop all thanks to it's dainty nature and ability to make any outfit look chic. For anyone interested, it's their Rio beaded silver bracelet - Vamp London say that this bracelet is inspired by the electric theatre of Brazilian lifestyle. I like to layer mine with my silver Nick Cabana watch and of course a few other bangles to mix a more minimal feel with my usual eclectic layered look. If you're looking for the perfect Mother's Day gift, have a look on the Brown's site, there's a range of amazing jewellery to suit all budgets.

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* Post contains gifted items from Browns Family Jewellers + Latest In Beauty 
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