Wednesday 27 August 2014

Lifestyle: I passed my driving test!

These days, being able to drive is the fine line between your utmost freedom, some jobs or whether you pick up a KFC on a Friday night or just settle for what's in the fridge. I had every intention of applying for my provisional license and getting stuck in to it when I was seventeen, however a slight fear of getting behind the wheel and maybe a hint of laziness saw me only taking the plunge when I was 21. Ten months later, last Friday, I had just done a brilliant job of straddling the bay upon my return to the test centre car park, and I was sat beside a driving examiner awaiting my fate. And I PASSED. The feels were real, guys.

On the run-up to my test I had scoured the internet for bloggers who had shared their driving test experiences (what can I say, I trust you guys for moral support!) but I couldn't find many, so I thought it might be useful to share mine for any of you who may have your test coming up. 


The morning of my test was pretty hectic; I was working at Creamfields over the weekend and I had to be on site for my briefing at 10:30AM. I wouldn't recommend running around like a headless chicken on the day of your driving test; with my driving instructor booked for 12:30, making it there and back with the possibility of festival traffic was only my first hurdle, but it kept my mind off the actual test at least. My last lesson with my instructor went pretty smoothly, if you don't count the fact that I botched up my parallel park manoeuvre four times and neither of us could figure out why (I'll give you three guesses as to which manoeuvre I was asked to do on my test as well), but after a pep talk and a quick reminder of all the "show me, tell me" question answers, I was ready as I would ever be. 

I think I was quite fortunate to have a driving examiner who made small talk with me at points throughout my test, as after ten months of having conversations with my driving instructor about music, football, our mutual fear of flying and his 'dad jokes' about how every speed limit under 50 was the same as his age *rolls eyes*, the thought of driving in silence next to somebody I had never met before was terrifying. 

The biggest piece of advice I could give to anybody taking their driving test is just to stay in the moment. I went in to my test with high hopes that I would pass, as does anybody, but I kept an open mind about it and I didn't anticipate the result, either before or during the test. Did I drive perfectly? Of course I didn't, but the examiner isn't looking for a perfect driver, they are looking for someone who can drive safely. I made mistakes; I started rolling back on a hill at a busy stop junction, and then immediately after I got the car moving forward again, I stalled. Not the most nerving situation to be in- I had no idea how serious this mistake was as I had queuing traffic behind me, plus I must have been messing around at this junction for a good minute or two (and I may have uttered a swear word under my breath), but I concentrated on correcting myself safely and this was the difference between a minor and a fail. If you make a mistake, forget about it. You are not the examiner. Don't let what could have been a minor error be turned in to a major one later on in your test. I learned this the hard way on my penultimate driving lesson a couple of days before my test, which just so happened to be the worst lesson I had ever had (I won't go into details, I'm still slightly traumatized, haha), but looking back I'm glad it happened.

I was surprised at how fast the driving test was over; I expected 40 minutes to feel like a lifetime but I found myself glancing at the clock for confirmation as my examiner told me to turn left on to the road that the test centre was on after what felt like twenty minutes of driving. There is honestly nothing like the relief you feel as you put the car in neutral, apply the handbrake and switch the engine off for the last time. I barely had time to gather my thoughts together and open the door for my driving instructor before the examiner turned to me and said, "So, that's the end of the test, and I'm pleased to tell you that you've passed". Sorry, what? I gaped at my instructor for a moment and then cried like a little weirdo as I had my report read out to me. 

It's such a surreal feeling to know that in the space of five minutes, whilst your examiner fills out all the documents and hands you your certificate, that you go from being a learner to a fully licensed driver. I am now able to go wherever the heck I want to, whenever the heck I want, and I can make playlists of all my favourite songs and hold concerts for everyone on the M62. And best of all, no more public transport. Hallelujah.
To anybody whose test may be approaching, I know it is difficult (I'll be the first to admit that I had many nervous breakdowns in the week approaching the big day) but just treat your driving test as though it is a lesson. Check your mirrors, have confidence in yourself, don't be afraid to ask your examiner if you don't understand something and enjoy driving. 

I studied and revised every single page of the Driving Test Tips website in the few days prior to my test, and I believe it made a huge impact on my confidence, so I would definitely take a look if your test is coming up. Good luck, lovelies, and my fingers are crossed in the hope that you get the result you are hoping for!

Have you passed your driving test? Is your test coming up?

Frances x

Wednesday 20 August 2014

Outfit: Put Your Pretty Dress On, It's Time For You To Go To the Dance.

Photo credit: Shane Murray
Dress: C/O Chi Chi* | Rings: Hummingbirds C/O Jana Reinhardt*, others: Rare London

Hello lovely ladies (and gents- I know you're out there)!

First of all, I just want to say a huge thank you to everyone who entered my Chi Chi giveaway last week. I have been in touch with the lucky winner and a stunning Chi Chi dress will be winging its way to her very soon! Not to worry if you didn't win this time, keep an eye on my blog next month as I will be hosting a giveaway for another fabulous brand in September! :)

Today, I wanted to show you the latest dress in my ever-expanding Chi Chi collection. I own two more of their maxi dresses (featured here and here) and my, are they special. Chi Chi's dresses are by far some of my favourite to shoot as it isn't every day I get to prance around in a gorgeous evening gown (mind you, getting strange looks off people walking their dogs in the park on a rainy afternoon isn't quite the dream I had in mind... Somebody take me somewhere fancy?). I love the beaded bodice and halterneck design of this pretty number that gives it a slightly Egyptian/Roman feel which I couldn't help but finish off with a braided up do and gold jewellery. Just call me Venus ;)

Do you have any special occasions coming up? Will you be sporting Chi Chi? ;)

Frances x

*DISCLOSURE: Starred items are PR samples.

Monday 18 August 2014

Jewellery: Souksy London

Featured on my blog a few times in the past under the name Chic La Chic, one of my favourite online jewellery boutiques has gone through a more sleek and sophisticated rebranding and when I got an email in my inbox I barely recognised them! Back as Souksy London, I am loving the new, vibrant looking website which so well reflects the chic and unique pieces that they stock. I am so glad to see that they have retained the tribal inspired vibe that I adore, as seen in this cool, tasseled necklace that I picked out (and haven't stopped wearing since; it looks fab styled with a plain black or white blouse), whilst also introducing more typical designs with an edgy twist like these gorgeous cross earrings that have been completed with wire knotting (I am also lusting over these gorgeous numbers). 

Whilst Souksy has a higher price point than I would normally be happy spending on a piece of jewellery, I cannot fault their pieces for their intricate, one-of-a-kind designs that you wouldn't find on the high street and the bright and weighty materials which definitely don't feel look or feel cheap. Souksy is definitely a retailer to consider if you are looking for something a little special and very statement; every one of their pieces is sure to turn heads and add a finishing touch to your outfit.

Have you checked out Souksy?

Frances x

*DISCLOSURE: PR samples. All opinions expressed are 100% honest and my own.
Friday 15 August 2014

I love Liverpool.

Photo credit: Shane Murray
Outfit: Blazer and Shorts: Lavish Alice via BANK* | Blouse: Glamorous | Shoes: C/O BANK

About four years ago, Liverpool was, to me, just another city that was famous for their distinctive accent, good stew, football and The Beatles. In fact, it was only my dad's enthusiasm for the fact that Brian May was the Chancellor of Liverpool John Moores University that induced me to select that University for my chosen place of study for the next three years. So perhaps it's my dad's life-long obsession with Queen that is to blame for my infatuation with this city. But I'm glad it happened.

It is a common misconception for readers of my blog that I was born and bred in Liverpool, and it is only when I meet people at events for the first time that I am asked why I don't have a strong accent. I actually reside in a town called Warrington, slap-bang in the middle of Liverpool and Manchester- which means, yes, I am a woolyback, a scanc (an unfortunate combination of the words Scouser and Manc, FYI, not a skank)... But I consider myself a Scouser at heart as I have since developed a deep adoration for the city and a desire to move back there as soon as possible.
So, when BANK Fashion contacted me asking if I'd like to represent Liverpool and talk about some of my favourite things about the city for their upcoming campaign, I was honoured to take the opportunity. I perfected my eyebrows, put on my best BANK outfit and dragged my best friend in to the city to capture the essence of the place I now like to call my second home.


Whilst I can't say a lot of positive things about my time at University, I can't fault Liverpool for being a fabulous student city. With three main universities situated in the heart of Liverpool, the city is buzzing with people between the ages of 18-25 and it has a nightlife to live up to all the expectations. I have many a memory of covering myself in body paint for themed student nights, taking advantage of queue jumps and discounted shots, losing my voice to the classic dance tracks circa 2010/2011 and ending my night sharing under-baked chicken dippers and chips with my flat mates. I mean... study hard, kids.

Something about Liverpool that I have come to respect a lot more now that I have grown up a little is the effortless beauty of the city. Whilst it has been a long while since I visited any of the museums and galleries there and I am by no means any expert on the history of the city (although I've heard many stories from my grandad), I can appreciate the contrast between the elegant Victorian buildings and the more modern architecture. Something that I really admire about Liverpool is it seems to do the whole "major city" thing without being overstated, and maintaining the culture seems to be of more importance than staying up-to-date. Did you know that Liverpool has more public sculptures than any other place in the UK besides the City of Westminster? No matter what street you turn down, there is a piece of art to look at, often with a story behind it.

What most people venture in to Liverpool City Centre for on a day-to-day basis is the shopping. With Liverpool's open-air shopping district, Liverpool ONE, housing over 160 high street stores, there isn't a shortage of places for you to blow your wages or student loan. However, if this isn't enough for you, Metquarter caters for your high-end and designer needs, St. Johns Shopping Centre is great for shopping on a budget and Bold Street is perfect for thrifting and quirky, independent boutiques. A great thing about shopping in Liverpool is that all these places are within a ten minute walk from one another.

Finally, I have to give a mention to the people of Liverpool. There isn't a single Liverpudlian who I have met who hasn't been able to make me belly-laugh out of pure wit. Not only are they natural comedians with an impressively unique accent and vocabulary, but contrary to the typical stereotypes, they are also some of the nicest people.

So, that is why I love Liverpool in a nutshell (It is impossible to write about everything in detail, this blog post was getting painfully long!). I find that Liverpool is such an underrated city and I am always surprised at the amount of people who say they have never visited, so I hope that this blog post has sparked an interest in getting to know it a little more. Below, I will leave you some of my personal recommendations for things to do and see if you ever visit. There is still so much for me to experience in the city so if you have any recommendations that I haven't mentioned, please feel free to leave them in the comments!

Have you visited Liverpool? What do you love about the city?

Frances x

*DISCLOSURE: Starred items are PR samples.


Liverpool ONE | Bold Street | Metquarter | Cavern Walks | St. Johns Shopping Centre

Liverpool ONE (for restaurant chains) | Nolita Cantina: Bold Street | Moose Coffee: Dale Street | House: Bold Street | LEAF: Bold Street | Cuthbert's Bakehouse: Mount Pleasant | Mooboo Bubble Tea: Liverpool ONE |  Almost Famous: Parr Street | Alma De Cuba: Seel Street | Concert Square | Etsu Japanese Restaurant: The Strand | Amalia Italian: Campbell Square

Landmarks/ Famous places
Radio City Tower | Liverpool Cathedral | Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral | Royal Liver Building | Albert Dock | Echo Arena | Liverpool Big Wheel | Chinese Arch/China Town

Public Art
John Lennon: Mathew Street | Billy Fury: Pier Head | A Case History: Hope Street | Eleanor Rigby: Stanley Street | Queen Victoria: St George's Hall | Bessie Braddock & Ken Dodd: Liverpool Lime Street Station | St. Johns Gardens | Superlambanana 'Eight for 08': The Strand | Yellow Superlambanana: Tithebarn Street

Wednesday 13 August 2014

What's In My Bag?

It has been a long while since I last wrote a "What's In My Bag" post, and since I recently got a new bag I thought it was about time for an update. I got this rather androgynous-looking bag by Mango from House of Fraser*, and whilst it is supposed to be a weekend bag, I thought it was a little on the small side for this purpose but perfect for housing all my every day essentials. It was only as I was preparing this blog post that I realised that men are quite right when they shake their heads at us and say we're like Mary Poppins whilst shoving their keys and their wallet in to their pockets. But when they need a tissue, or a pen, or somewhere to put that bottle of coke that they bought and can't be bothered carrying, who is there to provide? Us!

I haven't photographed all the items that I carry in my bag but I will mention everything that comes with me on a typical day out. Firstly are the things that I never leave the house without; my phone, my keys and my purse/coin purse (you can buy the pug coin purse here!), which houses my I.D., my bank card, my rail card, a handful of my business cards and my money. I also never leave without my Futurocks powerbank- this little box, girls, is a blogger or social media addict's best friend- It will provide your phone with a 200%-300% charge and has saved me from many a boring train journey! A 3 metre iPhone cable and a pair of earphones are also a must.

I usually carry a notebook and pen with me (if only to trick people in to thinking I'm really organised... I'm not.) and when I attend blog-related events or places that I know will have wifi, I like to pop my iPad Mini in my bag as an alternative for social media coverage.

I don't normally carry a lot of beauty items with me, but if I know that I am going somewhere where people will be taking photographs, I'll bring my mascara and my lipstick -if I'm wearing one- for touch-ups (a girl's gotta look good, right?). However I will always have my compact mirror, a lip balm, my Tangle Teezer, a couple of hair ties, a hand sanitizer and a pair of sunglasses (I own about eight pairs of sunglasses and the British weather is unpredictable, so why the heck not?!)

So, that is everything that I currently carry in my bag, except the small heap of train tickets and receipts that seem to compile in the bottom each month! Let me know what your handbag essentials are, and if your fella asks if he can borrow your compact mirror and a tissue because he has popped a spot and it's bleeding everywhere, say no ;)

Frances x

*DISCLOSURE: Starred items are PR samples.
Monday 11 August 2014

Chi Chi August Giveaway!

It feels like forever since I last held a giveaway (January to be precise!) on my blog, so when one of my favourite brands, Chi Chi, contacted me with the opportunity to offer my readers the chance of winning one of their beautiful dresses (up to the value of £60), of course I jumped at the chance!

I find it hard to tame my ever-growing collection of Chi Chi dresses as they specialise in a huge range of gorgeous cocktail, prom and evening dresses that will make any girl feel like a princess, so make sure you enter below to be in with a chance of winning!

-This giveaway is open to the UK only, sorry international followers! :(
-Use the Rafflecopter form below to enter. There are plenty of options for extra entries!
- The giveaway will run for five days, and will end at 11:59PM GMT on Saturday, August 16, 2014
-The winner will be picked at random and contacted via email and/or Twitter and will have 48 hours to respond before another winner is picked.

Good luck ladies! Take a look on the website and let me know which dress you'd pick! :)

Frances x
Sunday 10 August 2014

Review: Jewel Candle

Now, it's no secret that I love having a nicely scented candle burning away in my bedroom, and I'm not one to say no to pretty jewellery either. Watching Elle (AllThatGlitters21) on YouTube a few years ago I came across her video about a company called Diamond Candle, which sells candles with a piece of jewellery hidden inside from the value of $10 to $5,000 (?!). I was so intrigued by the concept but just as disappointed when I found out that the company was US only, and alas, I forgot all about it until a couple of weeks ago when the UK-based Jewel Candle rekindled my excitement and offered to send me one of their handmade candles to review.

The concept of Jewel Candle is very similar to Diamond Candle, each candle has hidden inside a pair of earrings or a ring valued between £10-£250, that can only be revealed once the wax has burned down. Jewel Candles are available in a whole range of scents including rose, watermelon (yum!) and passion fruit. I selected the Sweet Cupcake scent as I am a sucker for vanilla-based fragrances and I can gladly report that the fragrance payoff is amazing; when I light this candle, it is a matter of minutes before my room is filled with the (slightly sickly) scent of freshly baked cupcakes. The Jewel Candle website states that your jewellery will be exposed within 10-15 hours of burn time, and it was around 11 hours before I saw the glimmer of heat-resistant foil peeking out from the melted wax. I rescued the package with a pair of tweezers and unwrapped it to find the sparkler pictured above hidden inside.

Admittedly, when I first received my candle I was skeptical about the quality of the jewellery and half expected it to be tacky and not at all to my taste, so I was quite pleasantly surprised when I saw how pretty and well-polished my ring was. Jewel Candle guarantees that all their jewellery is made from 925 sterling silver and you can take your piece to your local jewelers to determine its exact value. Unfortunately, if you opt for a candle containing a ring, you won't know if your ring will fit you until you retrieve it from the wax, however Jewel Candle rings range from a K to a Q and can be re-sized by your jeweler if required.

I absolutely love the concept of these candles and I think they would make a fabulous gift for birthdays, anniversaries and holidays. At £24.95 for a ring candle (the earring candles are a bit cheaper at £16.95 as they are a little smaller), they seem a little pricey, but considering each candle burns for between 130-150 hours PLUS you get a special surprise inside, I think they are well worth it.

If you do fancy treating yourself or a loved one to a Jewel Candle, the lovely Jewel Candle team have provided me with a discount code that will give you 20% off your order. Just enter 'frances20' at the checkout to take advantage... Hurry though, the code expires on September 31, 2014! If you would like to see more of what Jewel Candle has to offer, you can visit their website here and their Facebook page here.

Have you tried a Jewel Candle? Did you find out the value of your jewellery?

Frances x

*DISCLOSURE: PR sample. All opinions stated are 100% honest and my own.
Saturday 9 August 2014

What I'm Currently Loving: Music

So, I originally didn't have a blog post planned for today but I have been lay in bed watching music videos for the past couple of hours (I know, I am the epitome of wild, I know how to spend my Saturday nights) and I got the urge to write something, so this is a bit of a spontaneous one.

Something that I haven't spoken about much on my blog is music, which is strange as it has been one of the loves of my life since the age of twelve or thirteen, when I watched School of Rock for the first time. I begged my dad to buy me a bass guitar (I was far too hipster at this age to go for something mainstream like the guitar) and I decided I was going to be a rock star one day. Whilst I am still working on that dream ( ;) ), I have taught myself how to play the bass and the guitar (I would learn every instrument if I could; I would LOVE to be able to play the piano and the cajon), sang in the shower (and whilst tidying my room, and whilst stuck in traffic in the car, etc, etc, there may even be cringey clips of me singing floating around on the internet, but we'll save that for another day) a lot and developed an undying passion for attending concerts and festivals. 

Not a day goes by where I don't listen to music, and one of my favourite things to do is scour the "browse" and "discover" tabs on Spotify for new, budding artists, the current most popular songs and the golden oldies that I had forgotten about. I am an open-minded person when it comes to music; there isn't a genre that I don't like and I don't have a favourite either. It is all down to opinion, of course, but I define a "good" song by the way it makes me feel, whether it's an upbeat melody that makes me want to move, a lyric that I relate to so much I could have written it myself, or the passion in the artist's voice that makes the hairs on my arms stand up. I have so much respect for artists who write their own material/ play their own instruments and I love analysing the meaning of songs.

So, since I am currently having a music video marathon, I thought I would leave you with a few (just a few, I could go on for days!) of my current favourite songs, artists and music videos at the moment, which I will no doubt have ruined for myself by this time next week from listening to them on repeat.

George Ezra- Budapest

Magic!- Rude

Michael Jackson- Slave To The Rhythm

Sia- Chandelier

Nico & Vinz- Am I Wrong

Kodaline- High Hopes

Kodaline- Love Like This

Thao with The Get Down Stay Down- When We Swam

Jagwar Ma- Uncertainty

I hope you love these songs as much as I do, and maybe you have discovered something new?
What are your favourite songs at the moment? I'd love to know!

Frances x
Thursday 7 August 2014

Outfit: Swinging Space Age?

Dress: C/O Wal G* | Shoes: Topshop via Outfit* | Necklace: Dorothy Perkins

I don't know if I feel more like Twiggy or one of The Jetsons (ahh, old school Cartoon Network/Hanna-Barbera, you were a gem!) in this sixties-meets-space oddity dress. Either way, I love the simple swing style of it which is so simple to throw on in the morning paired with the mesh cut outs on the sleeves that make it just that little bit special. Long sleeved yet light and airy, I see this becoming a transitional staple teamed with a white jacket and a beehive up-do (if there was one fashion era that I could go back to, it would definitely be the sixties) as we wave goodbye to the Summer in the next couple of months (and I was just getting used to the sun, booo).

 I've had these shoes for a few months now but they have remained neglected, deprived of sunlight in their box ever since- I don't hit the town in the evenings very much these days (ah, the joys of becoming a responsible adult!) and I tend to lean towards more comfortable options during the day (same applies). However, the large platform on these beauties make them super comfortable, so maybe I'll brave wearing them to a couple of events in the near future!

Do you go for comfort over style?

Frances x

*DISCLOSURE: Starred items are PR samples.
Tuesday 5 August 2014

A more personal kind of blog post.

When I first started my blog, it was only for me. It was just me and my laptop in my little flat at University, writing about things that I love to pass time between lectures. I was just so fortunate enough that people found my blog and liked what they were reading, and over two years later I am still here, 2,000+ followers and over half a million views strong (thank you) and there's nothing I've been prouder of.

One thing that I miss, however, is the more personal aspect of my blog. Before it became more public and I started telling my friends and family about it, many a night was spent rambling through my fingertips about my deepest thoughts and dreams. In some ways I can be quite an introverted person (although I don't really consider myself an introvert); I don't open up to people easily and sadly, I've never had one of those friends who I can call at 2AM for a chat, or invite over at a moments notice, so to me, this was almost like the same thing.

This is why I want to introduce these more personal posts to my blog again; not too often, just whenever I feel like there's something I need to talk about, whether it be something that has happened in my life or something in the news. Lately, I've had a lot on my mind and nowhere to release it, resulting in sleepless nights and miserably slow days. Some of you might think, "but you just said you don't open up to people easily, so why are you writing on your blog which thousands of people might read?", haha. Here's the thing, I don't expect everybody to read these posts and I assume those who do will click because they are interested. One thing that scares me about talking to people about my problems/thoughts is the almost instantaneous reaction that they could give. I don't have to worry about that through my computer screen, but I can still take comfort in knowing that somebody has read what I have to say. That, and since I do have an audience, I like to hope with all of me that talking about some of the topics that I might cover may help somebody else. I know that I wouldn't be doing this without the encouragement from other blogs that I have read. 

Anyway, now that we've gotten all close and personal, I may as well give you a little insight in to myself. Throughout my life, particularly my teens and now my early adulthood, I have been a very anxious person and a massive worrier, whether it have something to do with trusting a person, what others think of me, where I am going in life or even whether that pain in my stomach could be something more serious. This anxiety is probably the thing that I hate the most about myself as, whilst I am usually good at ignoring and hiding it, it has often hindered my overall well-being and happiness. However it is something that I am working on every day. If you follow me on Instagram or my personal Twitter, you will have seen that I post a lot of quotes on there that I have come across which constantly inspire me to have a positive outlook on life, be the best person I can be, help others and quite frankly, just keep my shit together. So, I thought I would share a few of my favourite ones in this post for if anybody should need a pick-me-up (A lot of these have come from Regina Brett's column, "45 Life Lessons and 5 to grow on").


Life is too short to waste time hating anyone.

If a relationship has to be a secret, you shouldn't be in it.

It's never too late to have a happy childhood. But the second one is up to you and no one else.

Forgive everyone everything.

Nobody cares if you can't dance well. Just get up and dance.

Your job won't take care of you when you are sick. Stay in touch with the people who will.

The desire to reach for the stars is ambitious. The desire to reach hearts is wise.

Follow your heart but take your brain with you.

When life presents you with the opportunity to grow together with someone, you must take it. 

What do we live for, if it is not to make life less difficult for each other?

Get rid of anything that isn't useful, beautiful or joyful.

The best is yet to come.


Sorry for such a serious blog post on what I usually like to keep a happy and humorous blog, girls! I promise I'll be back to regular programming from my next post! :)

Frances x

Monday 4 August 2014

Review: Long Hair, Don't Care.

Are mirror selfies acceptable for a blog post? I hope so, as I was really lacking a photographer, the quick release plate for my tripod and a nice background to take photographs against today. Plus I cleaned my mirror especially.

Anyway. I go through phases with my hair a lot. Throughout my life I have experimented with different cuts, from the disastrous chin-length bob that had me sobbing for days, to waist-length locks that to be quite honest, I couldn't be bothered dragging a hairbrush through most of the time. I have never really been an extensions kind of girl; in all honesty the thought of wearing something that once belonged on somebody else's head for vanity purposes has never really sat well with me, but since I am going through one of those phases where my own hair isn't growing fast enough for my liking and I envy every single girl I see with huge, voluminous tresses, I thought I would give them a go.

These are the I&K Clip In Straight Hair Extensions from Hairtrade. The pack contains ten super soft clip in pieces of different sizes, allowing you to blend your extensions nicely with the thickness of your natural hair. They are made from 100% human hair, meaning that they can be cut, coloured and styled. As the layers in my hair are cut quite thick, I found that my extensions didn't blend very well when straight, but after curling them and teasing them in to my hair a little bit, I was left with hair fit for a Herbal Essences advert (and also a reminder of how much of a pain in the backside it is to style long hair).

Admittedly, upon trying out these hair extensions I have come to realise that they are just not for me, although I did have fun flicking my new long hair around for the above pictures. The hassle of clipping them in and trying to make them blend with my own hair is outweighed by my desire for an extra fifteen minutes in bed in the morning, and I just don't feel like myself with an extra wad of hair attached to my head. Plus I still feel quite uncomfortable with the fact that it was somebody else's hair, but each to their own. So, whilst I patiently wait for my own hair to grow out again, these will be put away and saved for very special occasions. However, if you are a regular user of hair extensions, I definitely recommend checking out Hairtrade, as they stock extensions in lots of colours, lengths and styles and they are of fabulous quality for the price!

Are you lusting over long locks?

Frances x

DISCLOSURE: PR sample. All opinions expressed are 100% honest and my own.

Saturday 2 August 2014

Event: BANK Fashion Liverpool Relaunch with Michelle Keegan.

Yesterday afternoon I hopped on a train to a very rainy Liverpool for the #itsagirlthing relaunch of one of my favourite stores, BANK, which saw it become BANK's first women's only store. To be attending the launch was special guest Michelle Keegan, showing off her gorgeous new Lipsy Collection, and hundreds of her hardcore fans were already waiting outside the store when I arrived an hour before it was due to open to the public (turns out celebrity endorsements really work!).

Unfortunately, Friday evening traffic meant that Michelle was delayed by an hour, so I took this as an opportunity to check out the store, fill up on cake pops and prosecco and catch up with my fellow bloggers, Clare (tweet) and Nada (Nada Adelle). At first I thought it was a little odd that BANK were relaunching as a women's only store; surely that would halve their demographic of customers? However, after having a browse around, I realise that it has only made room for even more of their gorgeous women's items (that sunflower co-ord... Hello!) and the new layout of the store makes it easier to find each of the many brands that they stock, meaning us ladies are in for a much more pleasant shopping experience; guys don't care for it anyway, right?! ;)

Michelle finally arrived to the store at around 5:30PM, and the whole upper levels of Liverpool One were scattered full of people trying to get a glimpse of the action. She spent a while outside taking selfies and signing autographs for her devoted fans, many of whom were young girls who had been waiting at the barriers in the rain since between 7-9 in the morning (crazy!)! She then came back inside for a brief press photo call in front of her collection; a selection of dresses, jackets, tops and skirts which have been injected her personality and signature look, with elegant and tailored numbers including the sleek tuxedo suit that she was sporting to the event (LOVE).

Just before I had to dash, I was able to have a quick photo opportunity with Michelle and I can gladly report that she is super lovely and absolutely stunning... I have mega hair envy right now!

Were you at the BANK Liverpool launch? I would recommend checking it out if you're about! :)

Frances x