Wednesday, 22 December 2010

Lonely this Christmas?

For those who aren't coupled-up, Christmas can feel like the worst time of the year to be single. It seems that everywhere you look love-struck pairs stroll hand-in-hand with the glow of loved-up, smug coupledom and Christmas spirit in their cheeks.
The messages in the Christmas films are all about love and being with your someone special at Christmas and even Mariah Carey pines for her crush as she warbles 'All I want for Christmaass is yoooouuu...'
So its no wonder that those without a partner can feel a bit like they're missing out at Christmas.

I am lucky enough to be looking forward to my first Christmas with my wonderful boyfriend but for us its not all strolling around fairylight-lit streets and decorated shopping centres, with bags full of gifts swinging from our arms, wearing his n hers Christmas jumpers and clutching gingerbread lattes. When we're not in work or relaxing at home we're fighting our way through the crowds, dodging ditherers in shops and sweating in our coats trying to get our Christmas shopping done. We did have one brief stroll with a festive Starbucks but this was inbetween all the stress of Christmas shopping.
Also you can forget a festive, romantic ice-skating session. Being a wimp who is terrified of breaking bones the thought of ice-skating brings me out in a cold sweat and I refuse to let go of the side so me going ice-skating seems pretty pointless.

When I was single the best things about Christmas were that you can pretty much accept every party invite you get during the party season as you don't have anyone who you would rather spend your time snuggled up with and you don't have a boyfriend or girlfriend to buy presents for which means more money to spend on drink. (Always a good thing)
You can also watch whatever rubbish you want on the telly whether it's Love Actually or the Top Gear Christmas special as there is no-one there to moan that they have to sit through that crap.

Christmas is about giving and spending time with the people you love; whether it's your significant other, family, friends or cat. Whoever you spend it with make sure you take time to appreciate what and who you do have and enjoy yourself.

Monday, 20 December 2010

Party outfit recycling

I am currently trying to train myself in the art of fashion recycling. This is no mean feat being the fashion victim that I am but I am trying my best to ignore the voice in my head that screams "I must have the latest high street items. I must be bang up to date. Shop, Shop, SHOP!"

I have decided to try and wean myself off my addiction to the latest trends because I need to grow up, be boring and start saving some money so I don't have to live with my poor, suffering family forever. (This is bad news for the boyfriend as I'll eventually move in with him and drive him mad.)

Don't get me wrong, I will invest in the odd key item every season but I have learnt that there is no need to own 12 sequinned items just because they're fashionable and it's the party season. Less is more, so they say.

Part of the plan is to wear outfits that, shock, horror, I have already worn. Nowadays, with the popularity of Facebook and the likelihood of your photo appearing on there, freshly tagged with everyone from your old school classmates to your best friends to see means that if you were to wear the same outfit twice everyone would know. We have become a shallow society but you know that some people will look at the photos thinking 'Didn't she wear that last week?'

Social networking has almost turned us into minor celebrities whose every move is documented for all of our friends to see, usually with accompanying photos, and God forbid celebrities should wear an outfit twice.
The key, therefore with fashion recycling is to not make it look obvious.
Wear something you havent worn for a couple of months and team it with a different necklace, belt, jacket or hair accessory to make it look different.
That way you'll get the most out of your outfits. Because we don't all have a budget like Paris Hilton.

Tuesday, 14 December 2010

And the X Factor winner is... Matt Cardle

This year's X Factor unearthed a talented bunch (and Wagner) but none of the contestants impressed me as much as previous years acts, such as Olly Murs, JLS and Alexandra Burke.
They are artists who make music that I want to buy. Unfortunately, Matt Cardle doesn't fit into that catagory.
He seems like a lovely bloke and his win is well-deserved but as the man in my life says "he sings like someone's grabbed hold of his balls."
Not my cup of tea but one for the housewives and grannies.

Rebecca Ferguson is a lovely, classy young woman with a unique voice and oodles of talent so I hope she goes far.

One Direction were always entertaining and I'm sure Simon will snap them up and turn them into a newer, fresher version of Take That.

But, as everyone knows, it will be about a year before we hear from any of the acts other than Matt Cardle.
I just wish they had written a new song for him rather than churning out endless cover versions

The stresses of Christmas shopping

So far, most of my attempts at Christmas shopping have involved becoming side-tracked and ending up buying an Aviator jacket or velvet dress for myself.
Buying gifts can be challenging. There's always the pressure to get the people you care about the perfect gift that spreads an uncontrollable smile across their face as they tear off the wrapping paper, rather than a disappointed "Oh thanks" as they dump the present at their feet.
You rack your brains then end up deciding on Christmas Eve that your Dad can never have too many pairs of socks and a bottle of Coco Madamoiselle will do for your Mum for the third year in a row.

I wish there were ways to make it easier without asking the person outright what they want. (This usually prompts responses such as "You should know, I've been hinting all year.")
I've not had any luck buying my boyfriend's present at all. I had to return one gift as his Mum had bought him a better version and the release date of the DVD that he wants has been put back to February.

I'm sure it will all come together in the end. Probably on Christmas Eve when I make a mad dash around Canary Wharf after work! I'll keep you posted

Log Cabin Chic

It's that time of the year when the chunky, cosy knits come out and scarves and gloves become compulsary. But as the temperatures plummet, winter dressing needn't be dull.
Good old Dolce & Gabbana sent Alpine knits down the catwalk for the A/W 2010 collection which spurned an avalanche of high street copies. How very Christmassy!

Being on a budget myself, I opted for a very festive red snow-flake print jumper from George at Asda. It feels warm and snug against my skin, is a flattering fit and is perfect for snuggling up in on Christmas day. Bring on the mulled wine.

Even the bf is in on the act with his bargain reindeer print primark cardi and a cosy printed knit from River Island that would give Shakin Stevens a run for his money. ('Snow is Fallin...')
Girls, a word of advice; buy your man an alpine knit for Christmas. There's something surprisingly sexy about them.

If you invest in one trend this Christmas make sure it's this one.
Tis the season to be cosy!