Great gift idea…

This luxury champagne & chocolate box from Fortnum & Mason makes the perfect gift.

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Two of my best girlfriends turned 40 recently and we (me and each friend) sent the other, one of these fabulous boxes.

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They both loved getting the glamorous delivery and said it was the perfect start to their BIG birthday celebrations. I have to agree – that huge milestone needs to start with proper Champers and just keep rolling on and on and on….

So, I was pretty excited to receive a special delivery myself recently. At first, I wondered if my friends had got my birthday date (and year!) confused as I’ve a (little) while yet until that BIG date.

But it was actually goodies from Time Out Edinburgh for my blogging contributions. How exciting!

I could have saved it for a special occasion or… just fired in. We (me and Mr T) opted for the latter and, it was well worth it.

Seriously, the champagne is lovely and the chocolates are super-amazing.

The perfect treat for someone…or maybe just for you.

Any fab gift ideas to share?

French literary fun…

I’m reading this book just now.

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Well, it’s more of a pick-up-and flick through kind of reading. Enjoying snippets here and there, when it suits. You see, it’s much more a coffee table book. Gorgeous to look at with amazing images and design features throughout.

But it does make for a fun read too.

If I’m being honest, I’ve always harboured a desire to be a little bit French. But, all I’ve had is my name. Thanks to this quirky-read by Caroline de Maigret and her three co-pal-authors however, there’s hope for me yet! It’s full of smart advice, style tips and witty anecdotes that make you smile and feel inspired. There’s also some lovely quotes and useful stuff like recipes, Paris cut-out-and-keeps and erm, drinking games.

Here are some of the awesome tips to get you Parisienne’d up.

  • The Parisenne never gives too much away. When it comes to revealing herself, she follows one golden rule: less is definitely more
  • Short, clean NAILS sometimes worn with polish – but not always.
  • Embrace your inner snob (because let’s face it that’s who you are)
  • The Parisienne already knows what she must think: the opposite of what you think no matter what.
  • Enjoy the face you have today, it’s THE ONE you’ll wish you have 10 years from now.
  • You don’t have to spend a decade’s worth of salary on your wardrobe, or flaunt designer brands the whole time. All you need is one signature item: THE ONE you wear when you need to feel strong
  • If the Parisienne could wear just a Burberry trench and nothing underneath, she would be in heaven.
  • In short, you’re not a slave to the cult of a perfect body – so learn to make the best of what nature gave you.

Of course, it’s all very fashionista tongue-in-cheek. But you can imagine that some people will be haters of its very nature, which could be seen as tres pretentious and obnoxious. But, I’m not going to lie, I love its self-deprecating humour and unapologetic tone. It’s definitely one I’ll keep picking up when I’m in need of cheering up or, some life inspiration. I’d really recommend it. I just wish I’d read it in my twenties!

Merci beaucoup girls. X

Here are some of my favourite design bites in the book too.

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Have you read the book? Would love to hear your thoughts.

V is for Valentine’s…

It’s just not the same is it?! Gone are the days when you got sooooo excited about buying and sending a Valentine’s card for that boy you like, totally fancied. And then…all those daft (and fun) verses that you wrote all over the card. And, of course, the excitement and anticipation, waiting to see if you would get one too.

Too flippin’ funny.

Some say commercialised nonsense, while some go all out with romantic gestures.

I’d say I’m somewhere in the middle.

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I think it’s cute that there’s a day in the year dedicated to romantic love and that you can walk into any shop just now and buy lots of heart shaped things. I also hope that school girls everywhere are busy doing it retro stylie with their tacky cards and verses ready to go. And, that there’s not too much disappointment, once the postman has been on Saturday.

Here are my top Valentine’s Day gift ideas that would be sure to put a big smile on my face this weekend, from the muchos cheap to the tad extravagant.

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I heart Drew Barrymore. I heart that she has published a book about heart shaped things…even if it is a bit random.

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Love. Love. Love. This Grand Bazaar necklace. What’s not to love?!

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This Art.com print. All together now!

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Big MJ LOVE from Net-A-Porter.

Happy Valentine’s Day when it comes. Are you celebrating? Sending a card? I’d love to hear.