Thursday, 8 March 2018

Payday Wishlist // March 2018

I ended up spending an absolute TONNE in February! My credit card took a bit of a battering as I booked lots of items for my upcoming holiday, and also booked lots of tickets and tours for while we're away. I could definitely do with having a fairly relaxed month and let my savings recover a bit, but where's the fun in that?! I really want to do some shopping in New York to pick up some pieces I can't get here in the UK, and it's always nice to have things to remember a trip by. Bring it on!

lifestyle-fashion-beauty-blog-wishlist-michael-kors-jet-set-colourpop-ultra-matte-lip-sephora-favorites-gimme-some-nude-lips-iphone-8-plus-asos-sweater-iceland-guide-footballers-wives


I don’t really watch much tv but when I do you can guarantee that 99% of what I do watch is absolute crap. And it doesn’t get crapper than Footballers WivesI bloody love it! My boyfriend’s a huge football fan so we spend a lot of our Saturday afternoons watching Jeff’s Soccer Saturday and it always just makes me crave watching the glorious tacky 2000’s drama. I’m so tempted to order Series 1 on dvd, despite the horrendously large price tag. Surely such shit should only be a couple of quid?!

Michael Kors Jet Set Travel Bag

I know I’ve just gotten a beautiful Ted Baker crossbody bag, but that one is blush pink and I also need a new black one - I definitely put my bags through their paces and my Modalu model which is super similar has gotten a bit too tatty and needs to be replaced! I’ve been eyeing up the Michael Kors Jet Set Travel Bags for years and really like their classic styleThey will never go out of fashion and are beautifully made so I’m hoping it will last quite a long time. I’m planning on picking up one of the Jet Sets while I’m in New York so it’ll be a nice little reminder of my holiday too. Unless of course I go full radge and pick up the Gucci Disco Bag my heart so desperately wants. Watch this space.  

Iceland Guide Book - £10.48

If I haven’t banged on about the fact that I’m going on holiday enough - I’m off to Iceland soon! We’ve put together an action packed itinerary with lots of tours and sight seeing, and I’m sure we’ll get lots of information from our guides. However we will do a couple of days exploring Reykjavik on our own, and I do like to read up on what I’m going to see and do so I can fully enjoy it while I’m there.

Colourpop

I LOVE COLOURPOP! It literally pains me that we can’t get them here without paying a fortune in tax and shipping rates (which I have done a few times). They’re now available in store in Sephora so I will be definitely going in and grabbing some. Their matte liquid lips are INCREDIBLE and I think Midi will forever be my go-to colour.

Sephora Favourites Give Me Some Nude Lips - $28

Looks like we’ll be spending a lot of time in Sephora when we get to New York! I’ve always wanted to try one of the Sephora Favourites sets but have never been able to get one. I love the look of the Give Me Some Nude Lips set as I’m an absolute sucker for a nude lip. This is a great low cost way of trying out lots of different brands and shades without breaking the bank.

iPhone 8 Plus

My phone contract is finally up for renewal and I’m going to upgrade my iPhone 6s to the iPhone 8 Plus Portrait Mode camera COME AT ME! I’ve decided I’m going to switch networks too as I get zero signal with Three, though I’m going to double up on phones for a month so I can have a decent camera phone for my trip, and also utilise being able to use my data in the USA for free.

ASOS Chunky Jumper in Ombre - £32

I’ve become a bit obsessed with jumpers. Whether it’s because I’m going on a cold holiday, or because it’s been ABSOLUTELY BLOODY BALTIC in London, I’m not sure. But my jumper drawer has absolutely exploded. I love this knitted number from ASOS - the colours are just gorgeous and it would be super cute to wear in springtime too. (Though please let the weather warm up in time for spring!)

Yeh, doesn’t sound like I’m going to be saving any money this month does it?! Follow me on Instagram to see stories and pictures from my trip (and purchase updates!) - @emsypickle - and I’m sure I’ll do a Holiday Haul here too.


What’s on your wishlist this month?


Bloglovin // Twitter // Instagram

Tuesday, 6 March 2018

Favourites // February 2018

While January was the LONGEST MONTH EVER, February seems to have absolutely whizzed by. I had a really fun month, it was my birthday on Valentine’s Day and I had a really lovely day celebrating with Andy. I also went to the Harry Potter: A History of Magic Exhibition at the British Library, met my bestie's new puppy (spoiler she’s ADORABLE) and did A LOT of holiday planning - not long until Iceland and New York woo!

lifestyle-blog-favourites-ted-baker-handbag-nike-internationalists-harry-potter-a-history-of-magic-aqua-kyoto-best-sushi-in-london

My Birthday

Yep let’s kick start with my favourite Favourite! My birthday was on Valentine’s Day and I had such a lovely day. Andy and I both took the day off work, had a nice long lie in and ate Valentines cupcakes in bed for breakfast. Start the day as you mean to go on. He surprised me with some absolutely beautiful birthday gifts, including a trip to Tuscany in May which I am super excited for! If you've got any tips for where to go, what to do, see and EAT then let me know! We had grand plans to go to lunch at my favourite restaurant Aqua Kyoto (more on that below), check out the Whales exhibition at the Natural History Museum and visit the House of Mina Lima However Andy surprised me with tickets to see The Exorcist (which was awesome but absolutely bloody terrifying - I screamed three times. Loudly), and we were decided we'd rather spend the afternoon relaxing and chatting - and drinking - at the Aqua bar all afternoon and evening. It was a really lovely day and Andy was so thoughtful, leaving me thoroughly spoiled. 32 ain't so bad after all!

lifestyle-blog-favourites-ted-baker-handbag-nike-internationalists-harry-potter-a-history-of-magic-aqua-kyoto-best-sushi-in-london
My boyfriend bought me this gorgeous Ted Baker bag for my birthday and I love it! It’s the softest leather and the prettiest blush pink colour with rose gold detailing and a stunning big tassel. I am obsessed with cross body bags and love that this one will take me perfectly into Spring and Summer, and has been brightening up my winter outfits in the last couple weeks too. As I said in my January Favourites post, I love having pieces I can wear that come from my loved ones as it's like carrying around a piece of them with me. Yep I just vommed in my mouth a bit too. 


lifestyle-fashion-blog-ted-baker-camisa-tassel-detail-camera-bag-pink-crossbody-bag
lifestyle-fashion-blog-ted-baker-camisa-tassel-detail-camera-bag-pink-crossbody-bag

Probably my favourite restaurant in London, it’s no surprise that we decided to come here to celebrate my birthday. The dining room is the perfect size so you always have an atmosphere but never feel crowded in, its luxe but without being pretentious and the food is absolutely out of this world. We had our favourites - rock shrimp tempura with chilli garlic sauce and the shrimp tempura with scallop rolls. We also has the derakkusu chirashi (assorted thinly sliced sashimi, ikua, scallop, tamago with wild herbs and miso), vegetable tempura, black cod and ebi tabiko roll, and decadent "Tokyo Banana" dessert - hanaho yuzu banana sorbet, roasted kinako with plum wine bubbles. SO GOOD! 

lifestyle-blog-favourites-aqua-kyoto-best-sushi-in-london-food-blog-review

lifestyle-blog-favourites-aqua-kyoto-best-sushi-in-london-food-blog-review

Again in my January Favourites post, I talked about my new found love for trainers and my trusty New Balance 420's. Well dial that up by ONE MILLION and you’ve got these sassy little saucepots. I AM OBSESSED! I got them in the Office sale (they're still only £50) and love how they fit - they are super comfy and have a kind of bobbled sole rather than a normal full shoe one, which makes them really springy to walk in. They’re also obviously so pretty and I love the soft baby pink suede and the flash of metallic rose gold at the back. Love love love. 
lifestyle-fashion-blog-favourites-nike-internationalist-prism-pink-white-sheen-trainers
Of course there had to be something HP related! On the 20th Andy and I went to the British Library Harry Potter: A History of Magic exhibition, managing to nab tickets just before it closed on 28th Feb. I’ve never been to anything at the British Library before and didn’t really know what to expect but it was done so well! Whilst I think it was quite short - we got round in an hour - and there possibly wasn’t as much information as I think there could have been, it was laid out beautifully. Each room depicted a different Hogwarts subject and was decorated accordingly, with information relevant to that section. I loved the Astronomy room and learning about where J.K. got her inspiration from for the names of many characters. For example Bellatrix not only means “female warrior” but it is also the name of the third star in the Orion constellation...the star which sits on Orion’s shoulder...just like Bellatrix is Voldemort's right hand woman! SO CLEVER! 

lifestyle-blog-london-harry-potter-a-history-of-magic-exhibition-the-british-library

Betty the Beagle

I got to spend the weekend with my bestie at the beginning of Feb and had such a lovely time. Her and her fiancĂ© have just got the CUTEST little Beagle puppy named Betty and my god she is the most adorable thing! She’s got super long ears, big lollopy paws and has absolute flashes of naughty puppy madness! Kiffy's set Betty up with her own instagram - the_hitchin_beagle - so def go follow for the sweetest little pics and videos! I loved going to visit them, checking out their lovely new house and having a good old catch up. Prosecco, puppy cuddles and far too much drunken pizza - what more do you need?! 

lifestyle-blog-beagle-puppy
lifestyle-blog-beagle-puppy

Yep this is what my life has become. I’ve fallen in love with a laundry basket. Though when I instagram storied it, a lot of you said you loved it too! If I’m going down, I’m taking you with me! Look how pretty it is! I love the gold metal, and whilst it is quite large, the geometric pattern and white fabric means it doesn’t overcrowd my room.

lifestyle-blog-dunelm-deco-charm-gold-wire-laundry-basket-homeware-haul

Options Belgian Hot Chocolate

How crazy has this snow been?! Even Central London has been subject to fluffy flurries and seen temperatures drop to -6 degrees! Yep, it's definitely a test run for Iceland! It's been absolutely bloody freezing, and I've loved getting nice and cosy in the evenings, chilling out (and thawing out) with a cup of Options Belgian Hot Chocolate. It's only 40 calories a cup, so a great way to have a sweet treat without going crazy. YUM!

lifestyle-blog-options-belgian-choc-hot-chocolate-low-calorie

Rebel Kitchen Coconut Mylk Iced Coffee

We all know I love a Starbs, and whilst I have definitely reduced my intake as I pledged at the beginning of the year, I’m still buying more than I’d like. On a lunchtime trip to Whole Foods, my friend introduced me to the Rebel Kitchen Coconut Mylk Iced Coffee. Oh my GOD it’s amazing! It’s still fairly pricey - I think this little carton was just under £2 - but it’s cheaper than a Starbucks and much more healthy. I’ve actually stopped drinking cows milk this year and I loved the taste of this coconut milk drink. It’s very creamy, and even has some coconut bits in it - all natural dahling. I’ve taken the bold steps to remove the Starbucks app from my phone and am going to treat myself to one of these every now and then instead. I will stop wasting money and reduce my plastic intake!!!

lifestyle-blog-diary-free-rebel-kitchen-iced-coffee-coconut-mylk


So there you go, February is over and out. I am SUPER excited for March too and my holiday, so I'm pretty sure there'll be A LOT about that in next month's Favourites post!

What did you get up to in Feb?



Bloglovin // Twitter // Instagram

Tuesday, 20 February 2018

Lifestyle // Warner Bros Studio Tour - The Making of Harry Potter - Hogwarts In The Snow

I love Harry Potter. Like proper love it. Fan girls weren’t really a thing when I was growing up (hashtag old) so I’m more than making up for it now. I buy all the Harry Potter Primark goodness, listen to the audio books non stop, and have watched the films an inordinate amount of times. I’ve somehow managed to get my boyfriend to covert to being a fan (he even watches the films when I’m not with him. Don’t tell him I told you that). And where does a Harry Potter fan have to go? The Warner Bros Studio Tour - The Making of Harry Potter of course! I have been super fortunate to have already been three times (and got to visit the studios when they were actually filming Deathly Hallows Part One and for the Part Two Wrap Party. Yes I am showing off. No I don’t care) but it’s something I like to do as regularly as possible as they are always adding new content and sections. However, there’s  nothing more magical than the special Hogwarts In The Snow exhibition, when they transform all the sets, dressing them in their festive fineness - including the Great Hall laid out for Christmas dinner. Absolute magic.

warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow

BOOKING & WHEN TO GO

Hogwarts In The Snow typically happens every year between the beginning of November and end of January. I’ve been once in January, which was nice, but I was kind of over the Christmas vibe by then (though obvs my HP love lasts all year round!) This year Andy and I went on the 19th December which was the perfect time - it gave me all the festive feels! Be warned though, tickets sell out super fast - we booked ours in October and struggled to find a spot. If you know you want to go, get your tickets as soon as they’re released to avoid disappointment, especially if you can only go at the weekend. Tickets for the 2018 Hogwarts In The Snow exhibit are actually available now for Saturday 17th November - Sunday 27th January 2019. Go Go Gryffindor!

When you book you also have to pick a time slot, which ensures entry is staggered throughout the day and it never gets too full. I think Warner Bros have nailed this as never have I been and thought it’s too packed. Our entry was at 5:30pm which was perfect, gave us 4.5 hours to explore (it closed at 10pm that night) and there were less little kids which was great (so we didn’t have to feel guilty when we wanted to play with / photograph the exhibits!!) 

warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow


COST & GIFT SHOPS

Our tickets were £39 each, which may seem steep, but I think you get a lot for your money. We spent a good 4 hours at the Studios and there really is so much to see and do. As well as walking round to see all the sets and props, you also get an interactive talk at the beginning, there are interactive displays and activities throughout (which change with each exhibition, so there are lots of special Hogwarts In The Snow ones) You can also ride a broomstick, the Hogwarts Express and take wand combat lessons for free, even if you don’t want to pay for the pictures afterwards.

Once in the Studios there are three gift shops - the main store, one at Platform 9 3/4 and one at the Forbidden Forrest. I can only imagine that heaven is as wonderful as the main gift shop. It really is a thing of beauty. And magic. Obviously. There’s a HUGE array of items which do vary massively in price, from the really reasonable and affordable to way-out-of-the-Weasleys-price-range for the high end items. I’ve bought a few things over the years but nothing excessive - think magnets, mugs and pens, but trust me, when I win the lottery I will be buying EVERYTHING!!!! The main thing everyone wants is the chocolate frog which is £9. Sadly I’m too much of an adult to know that that is an awful lot to spend on something I would never eat as it’s Just. So. Beautiful. But I’m not so much of an adult that I don’t want it with all my heart. One day you shall be mine frog, one day. You also get a free little bookmark with every purchase which is a nice touch.

There is also the Backlot Cafe where you can buy hot food, sandwiches, drinks, and of course the famous BUTTERBEER!!! It’s not the nicest drink in the world but it absolutely has to be done, and you can choose to have it in a souvenir tankard or cup if you like too, for about £6.95. We went for the cup and have pretty much used it everyday since so it’s a nice way to bring a little bit of magic back to the Muggle world with you. They also now do Butterbeer ice cream which was AMAZING! Literal butterscotch glory. You can also buy it in a souvenir sundae cup if you so desire.  

warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow
warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow

GETTING THERE 

There is parking at the Studios, but we got the train from Euston to Watford Junction. You can now get there using your Oyster card which is great and saves faffing around with tickets and the journey should only cost about £8.60 depending on time of day. Once at Watford Junction you can jump on the Studio Tour Shuttle Bus which I do think is a bit cheeky that they charge for. It’s only a couple of quid but I think they should include it in the cost of the ticket, especially as they encourage people to come via public transport. 

warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow
warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow

THE STUDIO TOUR

As I said above there is so much to see and do at the Studios, it’s awesome! It’s great for all ages and I’d say Muggles would enjoy it too as it’s pretty cool to see the props and costumes and behind-the-scenes secrets of any film. Other than a short section at the beginning, you walk around at your own pace so can spend as little or as long as you’d like roaming around and checking out the bits that interest you. My favourite spots are always the Mina Lima graphic design pieces, like the school book covers and Honeydukes packaging, and the Hogwarts room makes me cry every time. Getting to see the Hogwarts Express was also magical and I loved the interaction of the Forbidden Forrest (and strangely the spongey bouncy floor!) Diagon Alley also fills my heart with absolute DELIGHT!

As well as dressing the sets in Christmas decorations and dusting the Hogwarts Castle model in snow, there are also special Hogwarts In The Snow interactive exhibits too. You can see how they create invisible Harry's footprints in the snow, how they make ice and fire and the Great Hall was decked out for the first time with the props from The Yule Ball in Goblet of Fire.

I’m not going to describe all of it as there’s just so much to see, and I don’t want to spoil it all, so here are some of my photo highlights. Enjoy! You can also check out more on my saved Instagram Highlights - @emsypickle

warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow
warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow
warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow
warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow
warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow
warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow

warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow
warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow
warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow
warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow
warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow
warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow

warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow
warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow
warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow

warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow
warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow
warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow
warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow
warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow
warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow
warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow
warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow

warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow
warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow

warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow
warner-bros-studio-tour-the-making-of-harry-potter-hogwarts-in-the-snow


We had such an amazing evening at The Making of Harry Potter Studio Tour, it really does keep getting better and better! I’m super excited to see what they add next and how it continues to grow. I’m also bloody excited to see what other merch they add to the gift shop. Swoon!  I'm pretty sure I’ll have no trouble persuading Andy to come back again with me either. I might order our 2018 Hogwarts In The Snow tickets pretty soon!


Have you been to The Making of Harry Potter Studio Tour? 

Which bits are your fave?


Bloglovin // Twitter // Instagram

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...