Monday 31 March 2014

March instagram

Er, how is it almost April already? Here's what March looked like for me...

Instagram username: @eversojuliet
1. After a year or so of badger-stripe hair, I got a wee bit bored and decided to mix it up. It took me a while to work out that I really wanted to embrace my ginger locks, and make them even brighter.

2. So I got fox hair! And I love it! I've started going to Boosh, and I'd really recommend them if you are in Edinburgh & looking for a new place to cut your locks.

3. I'm obsessed with my windowsill garden, but it's doing so well! I bought myself a water spray as I was going a bit mad over-watering everything (just because I love it so!) and I've bought even more succulents since taking this photo. I do miss having a proper-sized garden, but this is proving to be surprisingly satisfying & fulfills my greenfingered needs!

4. I'm loving rainbow coloured nails at the moment (probably because I'm hugely indecisive about what nail polish to use!) so it was a fun day when I got to try out the new Urban Decay makeup palette, and realised I matched the set.

5. Weekends now seem to revolve mainly around food, which is perfectly alright by me. This was a particularly good brunch. Mmm, brunch.

6. Spring has sprung, and the weather remains as dreich as ever! It's a good thing Scotland is pretty enough to make up for all the rain...

7. An accidental lunchtime purchase, but it was only £4 and look at it! I'm not convinced I actually suit denim jackets, but this one has the most amazing knitted pattern lining, so I just couldn't say no. What do you wear a demin jacket with though? Just a dress?

8. Rileycat came to visit again (hooray!) and was just as fluffy and cute as ever. He's living with Craig but I'm his official holiday home/occasional catnapper, and now that he knows my flat, he settles in really quickly.

9. I'm still obsessed with the anatomical love hearts that were made for the Science Festival's press launch. We had a party for some Scottish bloggers recently, where we showed off the food, drink and fashion parts of the programme, sampled some sci fest beer, and posed with hearts.

10. It's basically always a good month if there's a party with a photobooth involved. Here's Joshua & I at a Google City Expert event in Camera Obscura... which was SO cool. I'm also particularly proud of teaching Joshi how to pose properly in a photobooth. You've got to have a theme!

11. These were the most beautiful macarons on sale in my local cafe. Expensive, given how easy they are to make, but super tasty and so very pretty.

12. Posin' again in Camera Obscura. So much fun!

Wednesday 26 March 2014

Everyday makeup

I've been meaning to write a post like this for ages - here's a wee look into what make up I use pretty much every day. I used to be a total liquid eyeliner addict, but changed things up at the start of the year, which means my everyday look is now much more simple & fresh-faced than it used to be!

This is my 'serious make up' face. (It was the best of a bad bunch!).
Benefit Brow Zings in Medium. I usually get my brows done at their Brow Bar, but I like quite a dark, defined brow so I just this to add a bit of extra definition. I put off buying this for ages as it's quite expensive (£23.50 for a wee palette), but it seems to be lasting FOREVER.

Topshop Blush in Flush. This is a really lovely creamy blush. It looks quite bright, but blends in very easily.

Max Factor Pan Stik in Fair. This is a really handy foundation stick. I try not to use too much foundation as I find my skin gets dry quite easily, so this is good for using a wee bit in the morning, throwing in my bag & touching up during the day if needed. I also tend to use this instead of a concealer - it builds up so easily, and is pretty perfect for hiding any blemishes!

Benefit Porefessional. It's a bit pricey, but I think it's so worth it. Makes your skin feel all soft, minimises pores and gives you a super smooth base.

Benefit Creaseless Cream eyeshadow in RSVP. I love this colour, it's a really soft pink that is wearable for pretty much any occasion. This cream eyeshadow is really good too, it lasts a full day without creasing or looking knackered (although you'd want to top it up if you were going out after work).

Benefit Hello Flawless foundation in Ivory. I didn't quite realise how much of a Benefit fangirl I am before putting this list together, but I'm a sucker for nice packaging! I usually use the pan stik first, and then if I think I need a wee bit more coverage I'll add a bit of this foundation. I'm a big fan of it, it's super light, but still provides a nice colour, and is forgiving to lazy makeup application (brushes? what now?).

Rimmel Professional Eyebrow Pencil in Dark Brown. If I'm in need of some eyebrow shaping but haven't got time to go and get them properly done, I use this pencil to try and look less like a scruff. The colour range is pretty limited, but this one works quite well for me.

Vaseline Lip Therapy in Rosy Lips. This is lovely, and I try to always keep a wee tin in my bag too. It smells lovely and the colour is super pretty.

Maybelline Great Lash in Blackest Black. The best mascara!

I feel like I've listed loads of things, but I still think I have quite a simple routine. It takes me about 10-15 minutes if I'm making an effort, or 5 if I've suddenly realised that I'm running late!

Monday 24 March 2014

How to: make chicken noodle soup

Spring has officially sprung (although it hasn't really shown itself yet), but the nights are still dark enough to enjoy some comfort food.

This is such an easy recipe that, at first, I actually felt a bit guilty about blogging it. Then I remembered how rubbish I used to be at cooking (and the shamefully basic recipes I would google), so I no longer feel bad. Ha! This is for you, rubbish cooks. You can do this. Learn how to make tasty chicken soup from scratch, and enjoy wholesome food that is super cheap, super easy, and uses up all of your leftovers!

To make this you'll need:
  • leftover chicken carcass
  • vegetables (I used leeks, carrots, swede, onion, celery, spring onions & parsnip)
  • garlic
  • chilli
  • udon noodles
  • nice herbs (rosemary, thyme, parsley)

This is a perfect just-had-roast-dinner-and-have loads-of-leftovers soup. To make the stock, take your half-eaten chicken and pick off the meat into a bowl (and stick this in the fridge). Put the bones and skin and leftover bits that look a bit weird into a saucepan, chop up some vegetables, add enough water to cover it and simmer. Add salt and pepper and herbs, stir occasionally, but leave alone for as long as you can.

If I'm making soup on a week on a weeknight I'll have it all going by 6pm, and leave until I'm going to bed. That gives it enough time for a really rich flavour. Mmmm.

Once you're happy it's simmered for long enough, drain the stock and set aside for later. Bin the vegetable/bone leftovers... they have fulfilled their flavour mission.

Now you're ready to make your actual soup! Stick a big chunk of butter in a saucepan, add some onion, garlic, celery and carrot, and sauté for a few minutes. Then add the stock, chop up whatever vegetables you want to add (plus chilli if you want it to be a wee bit spicy), and simmer.

Once the vegetables have cooked for a bit (10 minutes maybe) add in your chicken, then add noodles. Taste your soup to see how it's getting on, and add salt, pepper and herbs to taste.

Once the noodles are cooked, it's ready! Enjoy with bread and butter, and enjoy your super wholesome tea.

Friday 21 March 2014

Urban Decay Electric palette

Stop everything and look at this. Hello beautiful.

Urban Decay - Electric pressed pigment palette* 
This is the new Urban Decay make up palette... which is a bit of a step away from Naked, the neutral collection that they are super famous for. It is BRIGHT. 

Eight of the shades are brand new (Revolt & Chaos are repeated from other sets), and they've used pressed pigments instead of traditional eyeshadow formulas to create heavily saturated bright colours. Now, I don't really know the difference between a pressed pigment and a traditional eyeshadow, but I do know that it is super annoying when you see makeup that is bright and beautiful in its packaging, but chalky and pale when applied.

L-R: Revolt, Gonzo, Slowburn, Savage, Fringe (top row)
Chaos, Jilted, Urban, Freak, Thrash (bottom row)
So here's how they look on! They were pretty smooth to apply, and the colour was actually just as bright as it looked in the case (although I should say that I used a couple of strokes for each shade - these could be a little more subtle if you only used a bit and blended it in). 

I am a sucker for bright colours, so a couple of these (Gonzo, Slowburn and Savage) really stood out to me. Fringe and Urban had really nice metallic tones throughout, and Revolt is a really wearable silver shimmer. I doubt I'd wear Freak or Thrash on their own, but I like the idea of using a pale gold eyeshadow on my top lid, and using either of these colours to line the lower lid.

I had a play about with a couple of my favourite colours (Slowburn and Savage) to make a corally-pink smoky eye, with a wee bit of gold (Maybelline Colour Tattoo) in the corner of the eye and under the brow. At first I wasn't sure how wearable this would be, but I actually really love it! It's not a Sunday brunch look, but I'd definitely wear this look to the pub, or on a sunny day. I also applied Slowburn over a clear lipgloss, and I'm impressed at how well it works as a lip colour too. 

The Electric palette is released on April 1st, costs £38, and can be bought from DebenhamsHouse of FraserLook Fantastic or

Wednesday 19 March 2014

Andy Smith illustration

I've reached a nice point with my new flat where I have finally unpacked everything (hooray), and now that the house sale is all finished & keys have been handed over, I know that I won't have any more unexpected ohhh-I-forgot-about-those-things boxes. This means I get to start decorating properly. which is a good excuse to buy some new art.

I came across Andy Smith through pinterest, and got a bit obsessed. There's a spot in my living room that is desperate for a bit of colour, and I think one of these could be perfect...

Top row

Bottom row

Monday 17 March 2014

Fox hair!

I've got new hair! After two years of absolutely loving my badger stripes I thought I was well overdue for a change, and I wanted to embrace my ginger locks a wee bit more.

I changed hairdressers too, and have started going to Boosh, a lovely hair & beauty salon in Edinburgh's Cowgate. I don't know why I left it quite so long to try them out - loads of my friends go and absolutely rave about it!

So this is it! About four years after ombre hair was cool, I'm giving it a go. I wanted to have hair that looked like a fox tail when it was up in a ponytail, and I'm so pleased with it.

We picked a red colour that was a really vibrant version of my natural hair colour, with super coppery undertones. That was put on the top third of my hair, with bleach on the bottom to lighten up the ends. Then when it was time to wash it out, my hairdresser did some magic blending trick, so the two dyed sections and my natural hair colour (the colour in the middle) all come together in a lovely soft gradient.

It's taken me a week or so to get used to it (the first day or so any time I caught my reflection I would almost double-take!) but I love it. Hooray for new hair!

Thursday 13 March 2014

Win tickets to the Edinburgh International Science Festival!

It's festival time! Well, almost. The Edinburgh International Science Festival (which I've mentioned a few times on here) is fast approaching, and thanks to my lovely pals at work, I have a few pairs of tickets to give away...

This year the Festival is celebrating science at the heart of everything - which basically means no matter who you are, or what you are into, science is connected in some shape or form. 

The Festival isn't all white coats or stern lectures either (although both can be found if you're into that sort of thing), there's food and fashion, comedy and film screenings, live music, robots, codey things, vampire, cocktails, theatre, musical pinball tables, and the chance to pretend to be a big kid and play with slime, eyeballs and potions (with beer in hand) at the opening party.

I've got two pairs of tickets to giveaway, and you can pick from one of the following events....

Science Festival Lates  Thursday 3rd April, 7.30pm
Fancy embarking on a Jungle Safari? Or having a go at keyhole surgery in A&E? Science Festival Lates is just the ticket as we turn our flagship children's venue over to adults only for one very special night. Celebrate the opening of the 2014 Festival with us as we explore science at the heart of things – we’ve got blood and guts, eyeballs and slime, bubbles and robots all mixed in with music, bars and fun. Don’t miss the chance to get hands-on and get your geek on – grab a drink and join the party!

Mathemania! Wednesday 9th April, 5.30pm
Mathemania has broken loose! Equations have broken through the ivory towers of academia to infect every part of our daily lives. Banking, betting and betrothing now have maths in their DNA, and you’re next. Your only antidote to this epidemic is to understand it. Luckily, stand-up mathematician and Australian Numeracy Ambassador Simon Pampena can help. He finds the whole situation hilarious... as will you!

Sin Academy  Thursday 10th April, 8pm
Merging science and sin, author and ‘hedonism expert’ Zoe Cromier of Guerilla Science leads an interactive celebration of the unholy trinity of sex, drugs and rock'n'roll as she explores the science of hedonism. From tortoiseshell condoms to superstar athletes on hallucinogens, expect stories from some of the more sinful annals of science. But you don’t get off that lightly! Get up close and personal with science in a series of interactive experiments that will give you the chance to smell your way to your perfect partner, extract DNA and feel electricity when you kiss. Naughty? Perhaps, but rather nice! Hosted by science songstress Helen Arney.

The Hangover Hypothesis Sunday 13th April, 11am
We all have a routine for the morning after the night before, but is it really effective? Bring your own hangover along (optional!) and join us as we attempt to stretch, slurp and scoff it into submission. Under the supervision of Milton Crawford, author of The Hangoevr Cookbook (sic), we’ll try morning after cocktails, a spot of yoga with Linda Douglas and – experiment with the classic cure – a bacon roll. Learn what science has to say and seprate the myth from reality.

Gotta Get Up to Get Down Sunday 13th April, 8pm
If you had to express your personality through dance, what would you be? A cheeky Charleston? A proud Paso Doble? Or a cocky twerker? Let dance psychology expert Dr Peter Lovatt, AKA Dr Dance, show you how the way you are and the way you feel can influence how you move your body. No need for a leotard and dancing shoes are optional in this terpsichoreal tour of wonder.

To enter just fill in the following form. I'll pick two winners and let you both know by email by April 1st. Good luck! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway
p.s. please only enter if you are able to attend the event (which is in Edinburgh!) on the date listed above. Thank you!

Monday 10 March 2014

February instagram

I'd like to say that I have a good excuse for posting my February round up so late, but really I just temporarily abandoned my blog in favour of hanging with my favourite people, long lazy breakfasts & days spent reading books & playing video games. I regret nothing!

Anyway, here's what I've been up to over the last few weeks...

Instagram username: eversojuliet

1. I brought this headscarf home from Sri Lanka, and I love it. I used to think headscarves were too difficult to put on, but that's so far from the truth! They are super easy and, more importantly, hide all sorts of mucky hair sins!

2. My flat was missing a bed when I moved in (good times!) so it was pretty exciting when it finally arrived! Excitement soon faded though, when I had to build it solo, and I almost snapped a side panel through my clumsy DIY (diwhyyy) attempt...

3. In the lead up to the Science Festival launch, a few work pals came round for a lunchtime scifest-inspired nail art session (you can see my attempt here).

4. I've been getting pretty brave with eating fish (which I used to hate) over the last year, so it was really fun to have a go at making sushi one night. Joshua & I "accidentally" ended up spending a fortune on fancy ingredients in Waitrose, but it was soooo good...

5. .. And looked like this! The sushi mat was a bit fiddly to start with, but it all worked out nicely in the end.

6. Dark nights & slightly skint days means I've been pretty quiet this month, but it has been nice to stay in and be cosy. I tried painting a fox, because I love them, and I was a wee bit nervous... fur looks pretty hard to do! I'm pretty happy with the end result, but I think I'm still too keen to put dark outlines on everything - I need to keep reminding myself to put down the paintbrush!

7. Another cosy evening in, with the hint of spring in the air. When my house was up for sale it was filled with lovely fresh flowers all the time (so it looked pretty for potential buyers). I'm determined to try and keep this up in my flat, even if it's just for me!

8. Yet another cosy night in (can you see a theme for this month?). I'm so pleased with this pie, it was ridiculously good! It's chicken and bacon and rabbit, in a cheesy sauce with a puff pastry (bunny topped) lid. SO GOOD. (Sorry bunny lovers).

9. While Craig was moving into his new flat, my favourite fat cat came to stay! Riley seems so unfazed by moving, within a few hours he was already strolling round my flat like he owned the place. He's off to live with Craig (cause he's got a bigger place), but I get him for cat holidays, which I'm so pleased about. Even if he is shedding his winter coat at the moment...