31 July 2009

Barry M Lip Gloss Wands

I may have mentioned this before (many, many times) - we're going to England next year. It's worth mentioning again because we've now booked and paid for the flights. Wee-heeeeeeee. Which means I really can start counting the days, hours, minutes and seconds. And to add to the awesomeness, we're spending two nights in Hong Kong on the way - can you imagine how much fun 13 Year Old Daughter and I are going to have shopping in Hong Kong?

Anyhoo, among the many many things we'll be stocking up on in England, add to the list these Barry M Lip Gloss Wands:

Barry M say: "Available in 9 shimmering and sparkling shades each one deliciously infused with an irresistible scent, our new lip gloss wands are essential wear for a dazzling smile."

I could just order them now, but I'd rather wait to try them on first. The shades that most intrigue me are:

Strawberries and Cream

Sugar Pink Glitter

Cherry Glitter

Strawberry Glitter

What about you my pretties? Which colours are you hankering for? The glosses are available from the Barry M website, for better pictures of each colour check out their Facebook page.

Today's nail: Barry M Pure Turquoise

I've just realised that my 'To Blog' folder is full to the brim with swatch photos waiting to be blogged about. Which is nice, because it means I have a backup in between stalking the postman.

Today's swatch is a favourite that I mentioned the first time I posted about Barry M. Back then my nails were horribly short and there was no way I was putting pictures of them on the internet so you were deprived of a swatch. But my nails are looking fairly acceptable these days, so here it is in all it's glory - Barry M Pure Turquoise:

This one definitely goes in my top 10. It's so deliciously bright and cheerful, and totally reminds me of the Twitter logo:


I think this was the first Barry M colour I tried, and it set the standard. Great application (two coats), lovely glossy creme finish and great wear. Combine that with the stunning colour and this one becomes a classic.

Your daily dose of pretty: Clarks "Steel Band" satin bar shoes

When I think of Clarks shoes, I'm always reminded of the chunky, unisex clodhoppers I wore with my uniform at high school. As it turns out, Clarks do some shoes that are far from clodhoppers:

These are the "Steel Band" satin bar shoes, and they are truly elegant. £26.00 on sale from additionsdirect.co.uk, I have a wedding to go to in December and these would be perfect. Of course I'd have to have the outfit to match ...

Shoes, shoes and purple tutus

What did we do, my pretties, in the days before teh interwebs? How did we shop? Obviously we went to the local shops, but before teh interwebs someone like me in little old New Zealand could never have bought ridiculously cheap stuff in the asos sale without getting on a plane and flying there. I love teh interwebs!

A big box arrived today, and between me squealing and the dogs barking the courier man looked quite concerned.

Here's the box:

Umm, yeah, that would be Fred in the box. He didn't come with the box, obviously. He quite liked the poofy plastic things, until I stood on one and it went POP!

Here's the first pair of shoes, modelled by 13 year old daughter (her feet are slightly smaller than mine, but does that stop her from 'borrowing' my shoes, noooooooooo!):

Here's the second pair of shoes (pink!):

And a doggy bum!

The shoes were something like £7.00 each - wow!

And here's what I bought for 13 Year Old Daughter:

Damn camera-hogging dogs.

There was squealing when she saw the tutu. It was only £5.00, so I bought one for her BFF as well, which means there'll be more squealing when she comes over this afternoon.

Did I mention how much I love teh interwebs?

30 July 2009

Mad Men yourself

I've never actually seen Mad Men. The Eccentric English Boyfriend is a fan, but I've just never gotten round to watching it.

I may watch it just for the 1960's fashions from now on though, after visiting MadMenYourself.com, where you can make an avatar of yourself based on the programme. Here's mine, and if I do say so myself she's rather gorgeous!

Judging by the way she's clutching her coffee, it's pretty early in the morning!

Your daily dose of pretty: seaglass earrings

So here's a new fact I learned today: seaglass (also known as beach glass) is glass that has washed ashore either from shipwrecks or glass that has been thrown overboard from ships. Some of it can be up to a century old, and it is believed that with the decline of the manufacture of glass bottles and the continued use of plastics, eventually there will be no more glass washing onto beaches.

Beach Glass Memories on Etsy have some gorgeous sea glass jewellery made from glass washed up on the shores of Lake Erie. 13 Year Old Girl chose these earrings as today's pretty:

These are called the Stimulus Package Special Seaglass Earrings, because according to Beach Glass Memories "these $15.00 seaglass earrings are a small purchase, but that's how it all starts to get our economy back on its feet". And they're cute!

29 July 2009

Retail therapy for 13 Year Old Daughter

13 Year Old Daughter had a half day at school today, and as she was seriously in need of some retail therapy because BOYS SUCK I took her and her BFF to the mall. Which of course meant another trawl through the cosmetics bargain bins at Postie Plus.

Left to right we have Entice Dusk, Maybelline Prismetal Purple, Sally Hansen Insta-Brite Nail Whitener, Australis Valentine and No 7 Sorbet, plus at the front is an NYC Liquid Eyeliner in Sable.

Here is a swatch of the NYC Liquid Eyeliner, which like the Plum version I bought the other day is very, very matte but nicely pigmented.

A lovely black brown colour, I like.

It wasn't until I got home that I read the packaging on the Sally Hansen Insta-Brite and realised that it's not intended for whitening nails, but rather for making them appear whiter. Oh and apparently it also fills ridges. Not what I wanted but never mind, let's see if it does what it says on the box. First up my nails before, post-acrylic damage and all:

Yep, yellow.

And, here they are after the recommended two coats of Insta-Brite:

Ummmmmm. Still yellow. They maybe look a little less yellow in the photos, but in real life they were the same, just shinier. Oh and the ridges were still very obvious (which you can't see in either photo because my camera was having a bad day). So, that goes in the bin.

Here's another mini haul for you that arrived the other day from Cherry Culture:

Fred feet! It took me forever to set up that shot, he kept sniffing the bottles and knocking them over! Anyway we have LA Girl Disco Brites Hustle and NYX Carnation. You should see Hustle on:


Bright purple. Bright, bright, bright purple. LOVE. IT! This one's gone into my top ten list. Apparently it's also a black light polish so in theory it glows under UV light. The chances of me ever testing that out are pretty slim, but who cares because this colour rocks. Application was nice, three coats if I remember right, but unlike the other L.A. Girl polishes I've tried drying time wasn't so great. Although it was touch dry pretty quickly (with a top coat of Seche Vite), it was very dentable for quite some time afterwards and I ended up messing it up. So I tried out Carnation:

Gorgeous, buttery, cheerful yellow. Just beautiful. Pretty good application for a yellow, three coats and some streaking that evened out with the top coat. Fast drying and stayed on really well through me doing the dishes this morning (which is the acid test for wearability on my soft nails).

Your daily dose of pretty: in which I prove myself wrong yet again

I have really, really got to stop definitively saying I dislike something, I'm starting to look like a fool. Seriously, I say I don't like pink clothes and the most beautiful pink dress ever comes along. I say I don't like nude pink nail polish and I end up wearing and liking a pretty nude pink nail polish. The list goes on, you'd think I would have learnt by now.

One thing I can say for absolute certain though. I hate animal print. Hate it. Will never wear it. Ever. No where, now way, no how. Not ever. Ever ever ever. Ever.


Ah. Right. Well. So obviously, what we have here then, is a pair of leopard print shoes. Which I love. Yes. They are, obviously, the exception that proves the rule. Somehow.

I love the criss-cross strap detailing at the front, the peep toe, the platform and the slightly chunky heel. I also like the blue leopard print.

They are the Bordello Blue Leopard Sandals, £29.99 from Kates Clothing. Thankfully they don't have them in my size, because as we all know I don't like animal print.

28 July 2009

It's just not fair

Oh how I wish I either lived in America, or Sephora shipped to New Zealand. Actually probably the latter would be best, moving to America on the basis of one nail polish collection is possibly a little impractical. But then, you should see the nail polish collection:

Blues, greens AND greys. Damn you Sephora, damn you! I want these so very, very much!

That is the Mermaid in the Shade limited edition collection from Sephora by O.P.I. The colours in the picture are (as far as I can tell) left top to bottom: Underwater Fantasy (shimmering light cornflower blue), Mermaid to Order (shimmering deep green blue), Just a Fairy-tail (silver and iridescent shimmer); centre: Ocean Love Potion (mediterranean turquoise); right top to bottom: Blue Grotto (deep ocean), Lagoon-a Beach (shimmering pale blue) and Water Baby (opaque molten silver).

Ocean Love Potion doesn't feature in the six listed as comprising the collection, but I'm pretty sure that's it in the photo. Whatever, they're gorgeous and I want them all. US$9.00 a bottle from Sephora, go and buy them you lucky lucky American pretties and then tell me what they're like!

Your daily dose of pretty: Supa Scroll Sleep Set by ellembee

I may have mentioned this before, I la-la-love Etsy. Especially on days like today when I'm stuck for ideas for the daily pretty. I can head on over to Etsy, browse for a while and I'm bound to find something pretty like this:

I love the screenprinted scroll design:

I had to laugh at the seller's comment: "I really hope this turns out to be a bestseller; that would at least partially make up for the fact that there are now pictures of my butt on the internet." Go buy it my pretties, make it a bestseller for the sake of ellembee and her butt!

26 July 2009

Your daily dose of pretty: earrings from AsiaJam

AsiaJam is a site that 13 Year Old Daughter is going to love - full of cute and quirky clothes and accessories perfect for a cute and quirky teenager. But never fear if your teen years are far behind you, there's plenty of stuff for the young at heart too. Like these:

Goofy and adorable, and only US$3.90. Plus 13 Year Old Daughter keeps chickening out of getting her ears pierced, so she couldn't steal them like she does my shoes!

The last two Hot Rods

I swatched the last two from the Hot Rod collection today, and I am super-duper impressed with all six of them.

First up, Cherry Baby:

Faithful readers will know by now that it takes a fairly special red to float my boat, not being a huge fan of red polishes. Well this red is special - a gorgeous traffic stopping traffic light red with the lit from within glow you get from a really good glitter. The base is a red jelly-ish creme (or creme-ish jelly), packed with tiny red glitter. Despite the jelly-ish texture this is really pigmented, although there is still some visible nail line after three coats it only shows up in certain lights. Thin formula but in a good way, this was really lovely to apply.

And finally, the colour I was most looking forward to:

Little Deuce Coupe is gorgeous! Another of those colours that makes me hungry, I figured out it reminded me of these:

Normally I hate banana flavoured anything, but I've always loved banana lollies. Mmmmm, banana lollies.

Yellows are possibly one of the most difficult colours application wise. Little Deuce Coupe was a pleasant surprise - it gave me the least trouble of all the yellows I've tried. There was some dragging, and it did require three coats, but it was very nearly a two coater.

So that's it for the Hot Rods. I am so glad I bought the whole collection, every single one of the wowed me.

Your daily dose of pretty: Louboutins

The Eccentric English Boyfriend and I have just returned from seeing the new Harry Potter movie, which was ok but not great. Much like Order of the Phoenix the attempt to condense a long book into movie length resulted in a jumbled and not always coherent plot.

Most eateries were shut when we got out of the theatre, so we ended up at a Korean restaurant where the food was excellent but the table next to us was packed with university students who debated for what seemed like hours over the difference between apathy and indifference, accused one of their members of having a religion because he was 'religiously aetheist', insisted on referring to everything as an 'epic fail' and railed against the racism suffered by Australian Aborigines all the while referring to them as 'Abbo's'. ARGH!

I seriously wanted to bang their heads together. There is only one thing that will calm my soul:

*deep breath*

Aahhhhh, the magical calming abilities of Monsieur Louboutin.

Those are the No. PrivĂ© 120 Slingbacks by Christian Louboutin, £551.68 from Net-a-Porter, and just looking at them makes me so very happy.

Wait! How much did you say they were? Suddenly I'm not feeling so calm any more...

25 July 2009

Some more Hot Rods and another haul

Another visit from the postman today (I love my postman), with my order from Transdesign:

When I've ordered from Transdesign previously I've always forgotten to select a free gift, which they offer with every order. I remembered this time, and ain't he cute! I've had to keep him within my sight all day, a certain 13 Year Old Daughter has fallen in love with him! Stuffed doggies aside, we have some Creative Solar Oil, Misa Dirty Sexy Money, Essie St Barth's Blue, Essie Shelter Island and Essie Huckle Buckle.

Here's my trust colour wheel showing off the four new colours:

Left to right: St Barth's Blue, Dirty Sexy Money, Shelter Island and Huckle Buckle. I liked the look of St Barth's Blue when I saw it swatched on another blog, but looking at it now I suspect that, much like Sag Harbour (which it seems very similar to) it's probably not going to work for my skin tone.

13 Year Old Daughter asked for Shelter Island on her nails:

Gorgeous colour, a beautiful crisp bright sky blue creme. I have to say though, as much as I love Essie's colours I have had application issues with every single one of their polishes, and this was the worst yet. The formula on Shelter Island is incredibly runny, so much so that there was a lot of clean up required, not just of 13 Year Old Daughter's nails but also her hands and the couch because drips kept sliding off the brush as I was trying to apply it, no matter how much I wiped the brush down. The formula is nicely pigmented but so streaky to apply and it pools at the sides of the nail, adding to the clean up required. With three coats I'd managed to get it looking good, and a top coat of Seche Vite levelled out any ridges remaining. I love the colour and I will definitely be wearing it, but only on days when I have the patience to apply it!

Now for three more of the Hot Rod collection. First Hot Spot:

This was the colour I was most undecided about getting. In the advertising pictures it appeared more tomato red. I am so glad I did go ahead and order it though, it's a stunner. Firey deep orange shimmer with just a hint of red, I love it! Two coats and really nice application - yum!

Unfortunately while I was painting 13 Year Old Daughter's nails I managed to get Shelter Island smudged on one of my nails, so Hot Spot came off and Lowrider went on:

Lowrider is a gorgeous grape metallic that reminds me of grape bubblegum. If grape bubblegum were metallic. I'm totally in love with this colour, it's very distinctive and unusual. Application was good, three coats and much less problems with brush strokes than Nitro Injected (the other metallic).

Now I've switched to Cruisin because I'm watching Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix with the Eccentric English Boyfriend, and sitting in front of the TV for a while calls for polish application:

Ooooh, this gorgeous light orange creme reminds me of orange instant pudding. (Is that a New Zealand thing that I'm going to have to explain to my overseas readers?) Anyway, looking at this makes my mouth water, it's delicious. Much better application than I expected, three coats and a bit of dragging but nothing major.

I have two colours left to try in the Hot Rod collection (Cherry Baby and Little Deuce Coupe) and so far I am utterly in love with it.

24 July 2009

Your daily dose of pretty: Amarena dress

I'm sitting at the computer in my pyjamas (which say Yummy Mummy on the front, because I am) staring bleary eyed at the screen. You see I've been to bed already, and failed to get to sleep, what with the dogs barking at neighbours that go bump in the night and the Eccentric English Boyfriend watching Harry Potter movies in the lounge beneath our bedroom. So I decided to get up again and do some pretty-hunting, and it seemed only appropriate to look for pretty sleepwear.

And what a pretty I found for you:

Such a gorgeous nightgown, which could also be worn as a dress were you brave enough. I'm not so brave, but I would feel deliciously sexy wearing this to bed! US$85.00 from madeinitaly on Etsy.

Kit Chalk It Up nail polish

Browsing the Kit Cosmetics site I found these three gorgeous polishes, released as the Chalk It Up range:

Chalk It Up is a very appropriate name, the colours do look just like the colours of my kids' pavement chalks. Left to right they are: Game On (pastel melon), High Roller (pastel mint) and Winner Takes (pastel pink).

I'm definitely coveting all three of these. They are AU$15.95 each from Kit, and annoyingly High Roller is out of stock.

23 July 2009

Your daily dose of pretty: polka dot over the knee socks with bow

I'm only five foot tall and a little on the ... ahem ... curvaceous side, so over the knee socks on me don't really work. Plus there's the whole thing about me being nearly 40 - the phrase 'mutton dressed as lamb' comes to mind. I find this enormously upsetting, I'd love to rock out the whole short skirt with over the knee socks thing - it's just so adorable. And speaking of adorable, look at these:

The little bow just tops them off beautifully. US$8.00 from Sock Dreams, who have some of the cutest socks ever!

Vroom vroom: my Hot Rods have arrived

You know the old saying about watched pots never boiling? Well the same is apparently true for postmen. Not that they boil, obviously, but I turned my back for just a while (read: I closed my eyes and fell asleep for several hours) and when I woke up there they were:

Oh hai pretties. Look at you all hiding in there. Won't you come out to play?

Left to right: Cherry Baby, Hot Spot, Cruisin, Little Deuce Coupe, Nitro Injected and Lowrider.

Wow! I loved them in the advertising pictures, in real life I am blown away! Even Cherry Baby and Hot Spot, which I hummed and harred over before deciding I would get them (being as they were limited edition and all) are actually pretty gorgeous. And as always the lovely Kim at Overall Beauty surpassed herself, including a cute little manicure kit (which has already disappeared with 13 Year Old Daughter) and an adorable mini crystal nail file in a tube!

I got to use my colour wheel - best investment ever!

Cherry Baby is packed with tiny tiny red glitter, Hot Spot is a shimmer, Cruisin and Little Deuce Coupe are cremes and Nitro Injected and Lowrider have a metallic finish to them. Application wise Cruisin and Little Deuce Couple seemed like they could be the ones to give some issues with streaking, and Nitro Injected had some problems with very visible brush strokes.

I was going to try Little Deuce Coupe first, as it's the colour I've been most looking forward to, but I was already wearing a yellow so thought I'd go for something else. I let 10 Year Old Boy choose for me, and he went for Nitro Injected:

This is three coats, and I was right about the brush strokes - I spent ages mucking around with it trying to get it to the stage where the brush strokes weren't driving me too nuts. Clean up was required too (as you can see from the picture) which is something I don't find very often. But I love the colour, it reminds me of some foil gift wrap I used to have.

I cannot wait to see the rest of the collection on my nails!