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Goodbye 2013 (and good riddance!)

Finally, 2013 has come to an end!

This year has been full of huge ups and downs, and frankly I cannot wait for it to be over. 

On the downside, I've had to deal with relatives and friends being seriously ill, resulting in me knowing the hospitals of London a lot better than I wish I did. On the plus side, I earned my first ever promotion! It's obviously come with a lot more work and pressure, but it's a big step in the right direction for my career.

On that note, let's keep it positive! Here are my top 10 moments from 2013:

1) Retreating to the idyllic silence of the Lake District twice, once in January and then again in December

2) Taking an epic road trip to Scotland with my wonderful housemate and being proper tourists

4) Buying my beautiful Mulberry Del Rey!

5) Camping out on the Sherlock set (twice) and meeting Mr Cumberbatch himself!

6) Revisiting my old uni town of York, remisicing about days gone by and catching up with distant friends

7) Spending a solid seven days on a beach in Spain with my boyfriend

8) Getting tickets to see Nine Inch Nails at their tiny sold out Scala gig (and then again at Reading Festival a week later!)

9) Exploring Cornwall and eating my weight in pasties and ice cream

10) Dancing like a crazy lady at Future Cinema's Dirty Dancing event

2014 so far promises more Nine Inch Nails gigs, a big house move and an amazing month long trip to Australia! It's looking great already.

Happy new year!

Stella McCartney for Adidas hi-tops

About three years ago I bought a very simple pair of grey hi-tops from Primark. They were thin and flimsy but I have worn them way beyond their lifespan as they just seem to go with everything. They have completely died though, despite me hanging on to them for as long as possible.

Enter: the Net-a-Porter Christmas sale, which came swooping to my rescue in the form of these amazingly reduced grey hi-tops from the Adidas range by Stella McCartney. I instantly fell in love and bought them on Christmas Eve, meaning when the fun of Christmas and Boxing Day was over I could look forward to a fun parcel in the post!

I never went in for the hidden wedge trainers, but hi-tops aren't trying to be smart-casual, they are just casual. Worn with skinny jeans and a big chunky jumper, these are going to be great for lazy weekends and dress down days at work (the type of day where I need to sit cross legged and comfortably to write a massive presentation).

Jeans: Topshop
Coat: Warehouse
Scarf: H&M
The Net-a-Porter sale is still going on, and the bargains are amazing. This was my first purchase from the site, despite browsing on a very regular basis, and it was so simple to purchase via the iPad app and the delivery was really fast. I also bought an amazing lightning print skirt from Kenzo, but I'll write a separate outfit post on that soon!

What I Wore for...Christmas Day 2013

I ummed and aahed about wearing a really nice dress for Christmas but really there was no need. I knew I wouldn't be leaving the house all day, and my potential options left no room for all the roast potatoes I planned to eat, so I settled for something simple!

My mum bought me this Santa tee from Primark so I went overly festive and stuck that on with my new acid wash jeans from ASOS (on sale for £16.50 now!). The jeans are super comfy and actually reach my ankles, so I'm a fan!

When I got chilly (which is pretty much all the time in my parents' house), I threw on my old but wonderful H&M gold jumper. It goes surprisingly well with my jeans, so I think I've found a new winning Winter combination!

What did you wear on Christmas Day?

Hedonistic Headress Making at Drink Shop Do

Have you ever been to Drink Shop Do? It's an unassuming building on Caledonian Road, but take a step inside and it is one of the most magical places in the city. The place ticks all the boxes for me: tea, cocktails, vintage decorations, craft events, jewellery and music. Sometimes I wonder why I bother ever going anywhere else.

This week I went to Hedonistic Headress Making, a night of copious beads, jewels and superglue. I was in my element. Plus we had massive doorstop salt beef sandwiches and cocktails; what's not to like?! We were given the choice of tiaras or headbands and then encouraged to delve into a veritable pick 'n' mix of craft supplies and go crazy with whatever design we wanted. I went for black, purple and green at first but it just wasn't working for me, I'm too symmetrical and couldn't make the messy collage look I was going for.

So I stripped it all off and went for black. And it actually turned out pretty well! You can't really see it in my hair, but you can't miss my friend Milly's - I dubbed it 'the unicorn puke' because it had every colour and texture you could ever imagine, I'm amazed it didn't weigh her head down!

Drink Shop Do has events almost every night, from Thriller dance lessons to Scrabble Sundays. Check out their timetable and pop down soon!

Clip-on earrings

Long gone are the days where clip-on earrings are for women in their 70s or those who want the channel their inner Pat Butcher. The only safe way to buy second hand earrings is to get clip-ons, and luckily for my taste in fashion, second hand shops and vintage markets are full of tacky, gaudy jewellery that I just love. 

I've had these earrings for over a year now, a friend bought them for my birthday, and it was only quite recently that I rediscovered them and started wearing them more and more. My favourite thing to wear them with is skinny jeans and a cashmere jumper - a really plain outfit that makes the earrings stand out even more. Now I have shorter hair you can see them more when I wear them, so it's been worth holding back so they get the attention they deserve.

What do you think of clip-on earrings?

Ripped jeans, black boots

Hooray! Autumn is drawing in! I love the sunshine, but I just can't dress for it. Jeans and boots are my go-to wardrobe items and I'm so glad I can rely on them again.

These jeans are a really old favourite. The holes in the knees appeared there through sheer love and overwearing and I actually really like them now, despite being disappointed when they first ripped. 
And then there's the boots. These are my ultimate favourite pair of shoes; good for clomping and stomping. They have a 90s grunge vibe about them and I wear them with pretty much everything from toughening up girly dresses or just to fend off the rain..

Obviously the best thing about the change in seasons is the sales. I got this plain white tee with a navy collar rim in the Hobbs sale, which is basically the only time I can afford any thing from there. Reduced down to £17 it's the ideal addition to my plain and simple wardrobe upgrade. My mission to find good quality items that have an interesting cut or pattern is coming on well, expect to see more of it soon!

Future Cinema: Dirty Dancing

It's no secret that I love a quirky cinema event. I've done all-nighters, open air public screenings, even the odd premiere if I'm lucky. Last weekend I went to the ultimate in immersive cinema. 

Held in Hackney Downs, Future Cinema's most recent extravaganza was based around Dirty Dancing, one of my favourite films and a chick flick legend. We were invited to be 'guests' of Kellerman's Holiday Resort, the very same resort Baby and her family visit in the film. A huge part of the Downs was transformed into a literal all-singing all-dancing vacation camp complete with everything, beginning with the resort's staff welcoming us, offering to take our bags and showing us to our first dance lesson.

We roamed the resort and looked around the reception area which was kitsch beyond belief and even included a muzak style quartet to play to guests who were crowded around the absurdly busy bar. Elsewhere there were various activities to drop into including hula hooping, life drawing, dance classes and massages to keep everyone really feeling like they were at a bustling holiday camp.

Aside from the main screen, the big draw was the Staff Quarters. Covered up with sheets and wood, people were peeking inside and trying to get in, but it seemed that only certain people could get in. It's there that real knowledge of the film came into play; we needed a watermelon! Luckily for me I'd painted my nails with watermelon nail art, but for my friend we went and bought a slice from the watermelon stand.

And that wasn't the only food available. We had awesome mac n' cheese and later on quite a lot of candy floss. Every little detail was attended to, even the drinks were all served in Kellerman's cups.

When it got to the actual screening I thought it would just be the standard big screen affair. However, Future Cinema choreographed real dancers to recreate the scenes on screen right in front of us which was totally unexpected. The best part (apart from the iconic lift at the end, obviously) was when Baby carries the watermelon into the staff quarters and the real life set-up burst into a frenzy of dirty dancers - it was perfectly timed and enthralling.

I loved this event and depending on the film, I'd definitely go again. I'm praying for a Mean Girls event set in a school, how amazing would that be?!
As of 20th November 2014, any products marked with an asterisk (*) have been provided as a sample for unbiased review