Falling in love with Venice

Tuesday, 24 February 2015

I was recently invited to take part in a little competition with MSC Cruises to win a holiday worth £500, and I jumped at the chance. MSC Cruises are a cruise company that travel all around the world, and after a quick look at their website I want to book myself a cruise – right now!

To take part in the competition I was asked to create a post about what I feel is the most romantic city in the world, explaining why, using a little bundle of things to represent the city.

Of course, my immediate thought process was Paris – but having thought a little harder, I decided in my mind, the most romantic city in the world for couples has got to be Venice. I’ve never been, but it’s a place that has always inspired me, and after reading reviews and viewing countless photographs of this beautiful city, I just know it’s a place perfect for falling in love.

To represent the city and the romance it captures, I thought I would quite literally recreate the city, on my dressing table. Being a beauty blogger who loves to travel I thought it would be perfect to bring both of those things together to create my own miniature Venice on my dressing table. I think dressing tables in themselves are quite romantic, so this of course added to the effect!

To create my mini Venice, I bought dozens of tea lights, to represent the city's lights, used some colourful fancy shower gels to represent the colourful buildings, created the canal with foil and added rose petals for a touch more romance, and even went as far as creating cute origami gondolas! I added some ‘LOVE’ letters to represent bigger buildings in the city, and snuck in some ice cream decorations to also represent buildings, as well as being one of Italy’s most delicious desserts.

I lit the tea lights and started snapping away, and I think the end result is just as I imagined. It captures the warm terracotta hues of Venice as well as the colourful buildings, and I imagine this is what Venice would look like at night, if you were to sit with your loved one floating down the canal together – utterly engulfed in the romance of it all.

I think Venice is undoubtedly the most romantic city in the world because it is a city of beauty, of fantastic food, stunning sights and breathtaking backdrops. Whether you are being serenaded down the fairy tale-esque canals, eating pizza by candlelight in a romantic restaurant or visiting the opera house, you are guaranteed to fall in love with this city.

Happy 5th Birthday to my Blog!

Saturday, 21 February 2015

Happy 5th Birthday to Away with the Fairies! I literally cannot believe I've been writing this blog for five whole years now. Today marks the day I sat down at my tatty old laptop, opened up Blogger and started to build my own little space on the internet, piece by piece, word by word. I never dreamed in a million years my blog would do as well as it has, and to even think about the amount of opportunities and experiences my blog has given me is a little bit overwhelming. 

What started out as a space to share my writing in the hopes of pursuing a career in journalism has turned into so much more. My blog is my passion, and to say I'm ridiculously proud of it would still be an understatement. Back in 2010 I thought my blog was merely a tool to get me into the career I wanted, but it has developed into something else all together. It's not just a hobby or a side-project, it's become a part of who I am and is almost like my own little online magazine, with a lot more personality and honesty thrown in. It not only has seen me travel down to London regularly for events, and receive some amazing products, but it's allowed me to work with some of my all-time favourite brands, see my face in magazines and make some lifelong friends. 

I got my dream of becoming a journalist, and I know my blog has played a big part in getting me there. My blog makes me so happy and I only have you guys to thank for that. Without you sticking with me over the years, I'd still probably be sitting here, talking to myself, but to know that people actually read and like the things I write makes me proud beyond belief. 

So, what's next for Away with the Fairies? My blog has grown so much since the beginning, and I want to see it grow even more. I'd like to embark on a layout change some point this year, and I also want to get on top of posting daily, which is still something I struggle with! I hope I'll have the opportunity to work with more brands, meet more fellow bloggers (and readers!) and make my blog the best it can be. 

So, Happy 5th Birthday Away with the Fairies! Here's to many, many more exciting years ahead! 

10 Things Every Dog Owner Knows

Monday, 16 February 2015

I love my dog. After desperately wanting a dog almost five years ago, I bit the bullet, parted with my cash and brought home my little furry baby, Rory. I've gushed about him on this blog countless times, but I thought it was about time I put together a post that will hopefully resonate with all fellow dog owners out there. Here goes... 

1. Your dog will basically become your child. When your friends ask if you fancy going on a night out, more often than not you'll reply with 'Can't sorry, got to look after the dog.' There will not be even the slightest hint of sadness in your voice. Because, you know, hanging out with your dog at home is waaaay better than a drunken night out. 

2. You'll spend more money buying his/her accessories than you will your own. Dog accessories are basically the best things in the world, and you can never have too many. I'm talking collars, leads, even doggy clothes, and then all the important bits like beds, food bowls... there are a million and one adorable things for your dog out there - and you're guaranteed to NEED them all. 

3. You will feel in competition with all the neighbours to have the cutest dog. You will, of course, always win - because every dog owner thinks their dog is the cutest thing in the world, right? (no but seriously, mine is).

4. As well as cuteness factor, it will also be a competition to see who has the most well-behaved/well-trained dog. 'Oh, doesn't he know 'paw'? Rory does...' Rest assured this is perfectly normal behaviour.

5. You will be much more inclined to share your bed with your dog than with your partner. For one, dogs take up much less of the bed and are far warmer and cuddlier. And, they don't make you watch Match of the Day OR whinge for breakfast in bed. Plus they won't judge you if you decide to spend the entire day in bed - most likely, they'll join you! 

6. Forget your own shampoos and conditioners - doggy hair products are just so much cooler (and they smell better). You'll end up spending your wages on Pethead products that your dog quite frankly despises but make him smell incredible. Mhmm, blueberry muffin shampoo anyone? 

7. You will become accustomed to picking up dog poo like it isn't a big deal, at all. You'll frown on those who don't, and pride yourself on your bio-degradable scented poo bags. You will find said poo bags in every pocket of every item of clothing you own, EVER.

8. You'll have at least one 'dog walking' outfit. I mean, you have to look chic whilst walking your pooch, right?! My personal favourite is snuggly socks, joggers and my big parka jacket. So wrong yet so right. 

9. You'll become a bit obsessed with that 'dog smell', in a way that non-dog owners will never understand. You know, just the comforting smell of your doggy's fur, that makes you instantly feel at ease? I could smell that smell all day (as strange as that sounds!) 

10. You'll learn that dogs are the most loyal, selfless creatures on the planet, and it's guaranteed whenever you're feeling sad, alone or upset, your little furry friend will be on hand to help. Whether it's to kiss away those tears (literally, doggies just love those salty tears!) or just to be a snuggle buddy, you can always rely on your dog to keep you company when times get tough. 

Basically - dogs are awesome. Let me know if you agree with any of the things above, or if you have any to add!

Little Things #11

Sunday, 15 February 2015
Jungle Book Kindle Case
My Kindle is currently my best friend and so I thought it was about time I bought it a nice shiny new case. I've been using an Accessorize makeup bag to house it in since getting it, but after investing in this beaut case from Not on the Highstreet I'm wondering how I ever got by without it. It's basically in the style of a book in that it flips open and your kindle sits snugly inside. There are lots of different covers available but I fell in love with The Jungle Book one - it was one of my (many) favourite Disney films as a kid and the illustrations on the front are just gorgeous. It's lovingly handmade and even comes with a cute note inside - adorable! You can even get it personalised if you're looking to give it as a gift. I love it and completely recommend the case if you're looking for one to keep your Kindle looking nice and smart. 

Sass & Belle Suitcases*
Just before Christmas I was sent a big bundle of goodies from The Blogger Programme, including a beautiful package from Sass & Belle (my favourite homeware website EVER), which had these stunning little stacking suitcases in. These match my room perfectly and are fab for storing bits and pieces - jewellery, books, dvds, knick knacks - anything really. I love them and think every vintage-inspired room needs some suitcases like these! 

 Trollbeads Bracelet and Bead
A little while ago I was introduced to the Trollbeads brand and sent this beautiful bracelet and bead from Joshua James Jewellery. There are a lot of charm/bead bracelets on the market at the minute but Trollbeads is one that really stands out as being unique in my eyes. Their selection of beads is stunning, and I was so delighted to be sent the 'Wisdom' bead, which features an opal for loyalty, an amethyst for peace of mind, a turquoise for courage and success, a garnet for devotion and grace and finally a lapis lazuli for competence - basically everything anyone could ever need! I love that there is a meaning behind the bead and the bracelet itself is gorgeous too - and a great price at £35. The bead is a little pricey at £95 but they have a variety of different beads at different prices and I think this one is just stunning. I also have my eye on this little fella to add to my bracelet - how cute?! I love that these beads have strong meanings behind them - jewellery with a meaning makes it all the more special. 

Thomas Kinkade Disney Dreams Calendar 
Okay, so we might be in February but that didn't stop me ordering this beautiful calendar from Amazon after spotting it on Instagram a couple of weeks ago. I was in desperate need of a calendar and as soon as I spied the incredible Thomas Kinkade Disney Dreams Calendar it fell straight into my online basket. Each month has a breathtaking Disney illustration on, and although I'm pretty sure the calendar dates etc. are American, it doesn't matter as this calendar is just too pretty not to resist! It looks so cute hanging on my wall and I definitely think I'll be cutting out and framing some of my favourite illustrations once I've finished with it! 

Sheinside Ariel Jumper*
Speaking of Disney, how could I not resist this beautiful Ariel jumper from Sheinside?! I'm all about my Disney jumpers and this one is so pretty - I love the colours and of course I'm a big fan of Ariel! I think it's perfect for Spring and will look amazing with a tan. It's a really good price too - having bought from Sheinside in the past I do find their sizes come up a bit small but considering they're an overseas company their length of delivery is really good. I cannot wait to wear this! 

 Flamingo Candle*
I love my candles, and every time a new candle brand pops under my radar I have to give them a try. I'd been meaning to place an order from Flamingo Candles when the lovely ladies at Benefit Cosmetic dropped me a Christmas pressie including one of the gorgeous candles. The best thing? It's the chocolate orange candle, and chocolate orange is one of my favourite things in the world ever. It smells INCREDIBLE and I know the candle itself is going to last me a good while. It also looks so pretty sitting on my shelf! The only downside? It makes me crave a Terry's Chocolate Orange like mad! 

What little things are you currently loving at the moment? Let me know! 

Happy Valentine's Day with Lush

Saturday, 14 February 2015

Happy Valentine’s Day love bugs! In the spirit of all things romantic and Valentine’s-related, I thought I would pop a post up on the beautiful Lush Valentine’s collection. Quite possibly my favourite collection from Lush every year (bar Snow Fairy), the Lush Valentine’s collection is a mix of love hearts and pastel-hued candy scents, which are by far my favourite kind of scents!

I was lucky enough to be sent a few bits and pieces from the range and couldn’t resist sharing them with you on the most romantic day of the year!

First up, the product I was ridiculously excited about from this year’s collection was the Unicorn Horn bubble bar. As an avid pastel and unicorn fan, this bubble bar is the perfect combination and smells amazing. It’s so pretty I’m a bit hesitant to actually use it, but when I do I’m sure my bath will become a bubbly rainbow paradise!

The Kiss products that Lush release for Valentine’s have always been a favourite with me – I’m a big fan of the lip gloss but this year was the first year I got to try the lip scrub for myself too! It’s a sugary mix that is totally Valentine’s-ified with the added touch of little sugar hearts and even sprinkles, and works amazingly well at creating super kissable lips. Yes, Lush’s lip scrubs might be a bit of a gimmick (we all know they’re pretty easy to make yourself) but this one totally oozes the cuteness factor thanks to the little touches. It doesn’t smell quite as tempting as the Bubblegum scrub (a personal favourite of mine) but I can forgive that for the added extras.

Obviously, Lush wouldn’t be Lush without adding an uber sparkly heart to the affair – and the Lonely Heart bubble bar is a gorgeous mix of red and gold sparkle. It smells amazing – lemongrass, bergamot, jasmine and ylang ylang make up the scent for this little baby which makes it a total pleasure to bathe in. I’m not too sure on the whole red bath water thing but it’s certainly very fitting for Valentine’s Day!

Finally, the last Lush Valentine’s Day product I’d like to mention is the Floating Flower bath bomb, which I am SO excited to use. I’ve had a peek on the Lush website and this looks to leave your bath an amazing rainbow mix of colours, whilst smelling gorgeous and being packed with essential oils.

Overall I am head-over-heels in love with the Lush Valentine’s collection and definitely think it’s worth going and treating yourself to a few bits before they sell out! Have you tried any bits from the collection?

Soap & Glory Sexy Mother Pucker Gloss Crayons Review

Sunday, 8 February 2015

As Valentine's Day is less than a week away (got your pressie requests in yet!?) I thought it was the perfect opportunity to talk about my current favourite kissable-lip product. As a Christmas pressie from the lovely people at Soap & Glory, I was sent a little tin trio of their 'Sexy Mother Pucker' gloss crayons, and after having a good couple of months to test them, I thought I'd share my thoughts!

First of all - if you aren't a fan of S&G's original 'Sexy Mother Pucker' lip glosses - never fear. I'll admit, I'm not the biggest fan of those, but these are a total game-changer. For starters, they contain the same lip-plumping formulation but without the slightly uncomfortable 'tingling' sensation the original gloss gives you, which is always a plus if you're after fuller lips. Personally, I'm not ever interested in lip-plumping products (I have big enough lips as it is) but these babies are so much more than just lip plumpers.

These gloss crayons give gorgeous, super glossy lips that are totally moisturised and nourished, whilst also giving a gorgeous colour. I was worried they'd be a tad too sheer, but after a few layers they give really good colour pay-off. The colours I was given were Bashful - a pinky nude, Fuchsia-ristic - definitely more of a coral than fuschia, and Raplumzel, a gorgeous plum shade.

Bashful is the perfect nude-pink shade. It's probably my favourite of the three as it's the most wearable and probably the one that suits me best. I think it would suit the majority of skin tones and I've been wearing it none-stop since discovering it! 


Whoever came up with the name for this one certainly missed a trick, as it's definitely a coral shade - there's not a lot of fuschia going on here. It is, however, a really lovely red-fuschia that would be amazing over the summer months. 

Raplumzel (BEST... NAME... EVER!) is a beautiful plummy shade that is ideal for the winter months. It's probably my least favourite of the three as I feel it's a bit of an 'older' colour, and I'd have liked it if they had gone a bit darker and deeper, and a bit more purple with this one. That being said it's a lovely colour - just personally it's not my cup of tea! 

Overall I think these gloss crayons are fab little products as they give such moisturisation and shine, without the nasty sticky feel of lipgloss. The fact they plump your lips too is a big bonus! I'm particularly looking forward to using these over the summer months, but they're great at this time of the year too as they keep your lips nice and nourished.  

Have you tried the Soap & Glory Sexy Mother Pucker Gloss Crayons? Let me know what you thought!