A Postcard from LA

It’s been one month since we arrived back in Glasgow from our US road trip and I’m honestly still processing a lot of it! I can’t believe the distance we covered (about 4,000 miles – not including flights!), the things we seen (seven beautiful states!) and the places we visited. Mountains, deserts, towns, forests and cities – you name it, we probably went there!

We started our journey in California and, after a few days in Anaheim, spent four nights in LA. It was our first time visiting this awesome city and I really wanted to share a few highlights with you guys.

Here’s a postcard from LA…

Shopping

LA is ridiculously good for shopping and the mix of stores is perfect! We loved the indie streetwear, vintage treasure and high-end designer stores on Melrose, alongside specialist stores like Drake’s OVO and the adorable Pigmy Hippo Shoppe just a short walk away.

We stayed near The Grove which is a really nice outdoor shopping mall, filled with all the usual retailers like Sephora and Zara plus a really great farmer’s market. I had to be super strict with myself in LA, otherwise I’d have needed an extra suitcase!

Food

You’ll never be stuck for a bite to eat in LA and we noticed that tacos were the most popular dish (though we couldn’t get near the Mexican bars on Cinco de Mayo – too busy!). One of my favourite places we grabbed breakfast was Eggslut… so much so that I’ve been trying to recreate the sandwich I had ever since!

We also adored Cake Monkey, which came highly recommended by some of you over on Instagram. Amazing cakes and delicious coffee – it’s probably for the best that we discovered it on our last day in the city…

Sightseeing

In just a few days, we managed to squeeze in a lot of sightseeing. It was fun to tick the Hollywood Walk of Fame off of our list but, if you go, be prepared for it to be extremely crowded! Seeing the hand and foot prints outside of Grauman’s Chinese Theatre was like taking in a little bit of cinematic history and we also couldn’t resist going on a studio tour while we were in Tinsel Town – we chose the Warner Brothers tour and loved every minute!

The Griffith Observatory at the top of the Hollywood Hills has stunning views and is well worth the hike/Uber ride up there – especially on a clear day.

We also hit a couple of beaches for some laid-back, California vibes. Venice Beach was iconic and exactly how it looks in the movies and Santa Monica was perfect for people watching (and posing!).

Staying

While in LA, we stayed in Fairfax at The Farmer’s Daughter Hotel. I’m not going to mention too much about the hotel itself (there’s a separate review post in the works!), but the area itself was very well-located for shopping and food. Plus, you could see the Hollywood sign as soon as you stepped out of the door!

I think the best thing we found about spending time in LA is that you can really make it any kind of trip you want. If you want to take it easy, there are plenty of nice places and beaches to hang out at or, if you’d rather to be a tourist, there are plenty of activities to fill your day with too.

We left the city with lots of great memories but still hungry for a little bit more. I have a feeling we will be back in this babe of a town someday… watch this space! In the meantime, for more photos from our road trip, hop over to my Instagram and take a peek.

Have you ever visited LA? What are your favourite things to do in la la land?

2016 Lifestyle Gifts for Foodies, Homebodies & Magpies

2016 lifestyle gifts

Can you guys believe that there’s 2 weeks to go until Christmas? If you haven’t finished your shopping yet, don’t sweat it – I’m here with the third edition of my gift guide to give you a helping hand! And if you haven’t caught up with my previous two instalments, you can read up on the best makeup sets here, and catch my bath, body and beyond extravaganza here.

Today, I’m sharing some of the finest 2016 lifestyle gifts for the foodies, homebodies and magpies in our lives. If you know someone who loves to get creative in the kitchen, fill their home with stylish pieces or just can’t say no to a statement accessory (ahem! Guilty as charged), then read on…

2016 lifestyle gifts

Smoked Diamonds Candle from Shearer Candles

Shearer Candles have so many scents to choose from that it can be difficult to pick just one out! What I love about this Smoked Diamonds candle is that not only does it smell AMAZING, but the mirrored packaging is also stunning – making it a great stocking filler for anyone that has moved home lately, or simply likes to have something pretty to keep on their desk.

Smoked Diamonds’ scent is described as a ‘blend of playful florals, sensual musks and sweet cocoa’ and is part of the latest collection from Shearer Candles, who make all of their products here in Glasgow. You can pick up the small (£10) or larger version (£15) of Smoked Diamonds online or in store.

2016 lifestyle gifts

Tatty Devine Home 

When Tatty Devine release something new, you better believe that I sit up and pay attention – but when one of my favourite jewellery brands announced that they were launching a line of accessories and homeware? Well, let’s just say that I was very excited!

Expect bold and playful designs in bright colours and even a sprinkling of glitter. What’s also awesome about the collection is how affordable it is, with prices ranging between £9.99 and £29.99, making the pieces ideal for treating your girl gang. This Soda Pop coin purse (£14.99) is guaranteed to make looking for loose change much more fun! Find out more online.

2016 lifestyle gifts

Frosty Garland & Yum Yum Club at Ulster Weavers 

Know someone who is the ultimate domestic goddess? Show your hostess with the mostess some love with the festive Frosty Garland range from Ulster Weavers. The bold robin and wreath designs on items such as tea towels, aprons and oven gloves are in vivid shades of blue and fuchsia – guaranteed to bring a touch of festive cheer to any kitchen.

Also at Ulster Weavers this season are Santa’s Cookie Jars by the Yum Yum Club. These are packed with almost everything needed (minus an egg and some butter) to make some baked delights, including a handy recipe. All of the ingredients have already been measured, making this an ideal gift if you know anyone who bakes with little ones. Explore Ulster Weavers’ winter wonderland here.

2016 lifestyle gifts

Bold, Fun Timepieces by Swatch 

If you were a child of the eighties or nineties, it’s likely that you will have grown up with the Swiss-designed Swatch Watches. Now, more than 30 years after the brand was born, they are still drawing inspiration from art and fashion to create their colourful collections.

From 1980s electro pop nostalgia, to more luxurious metal bracelet designs, there are seemingly endless pieces to choose from – making this a one-stop shop for gift inspiration when it comes to your most fashion-forward friends. Prices start at £32 and you can shop all current Swatch watches online, as well as visiting your local store.

2016 lifestyle gifts

I hope you’ve been enjoying my 2016 gift guides so far – I sure have loved sharing them. Would you be tempted to keep any of these picks for yourself? And be sure to let me know what else you’ve been popping in your shopping basket this season!

Love,

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2016 Bath, Body and Beyond Gifts for Pampering

gifts for pampering

It’s a new week, which means it’s time for the second instalment of my ho-ho-holiday gift guide! Every Monday until Christmas I’ll be sharing my pick of the treats that we (or someone we know!) would love to wake up to under the tree.

Today, I’m talking bath, body and beyond – ideal for anyone who loves to indulge themselves and enjoys nothing more than soaking in the tub, slathering themselves in rich lotions and giving their locks some TLC! They’re also the perfect gifts for pampering someone special who deserves to be looked after.

With four fabulous brands to choose from, there’s everything you need to give someone a night of me-time…

gifts for pampering

Foam & For-Tune by Soap & Glory

Singing in the shower (or the bath!) is actively encouraged with this magical musical tin from Soap and Glory’s Glitzmas collection. I don’t know many ladies that DON’T wish for Soap & Glory at Christmas time and, from this years extensive range, Foam & For-Tune is a super fun gift for anyone who loves their pamper time with a big ol’ slice of kitsch!

In typical Soap & Glory style, this is a very PINK and nicely packaged present, containing a host of miniature best-sellers including Clean on Me shower gel, The Scrub of Your Life body buffer, Sugar Crush body wash, body scrub & buttercream (best smell ever!), The Righteous Butter body butter and a pink shower puff. As if this little lot wasn’t enough to get into a lather over, the keepsake tin also sings! You can pick Foam & For-Tune up at Boots stores and online for £16.

gifts for pampering

Christmas at Kiehl’s

Starbucks may have their red cups, but it’s when the red boxes and bows start to arrive at Kiehl’s that beauty lovers get REALLY excited. Specialising in all things skincare, Kiehl’s stay true to their prescriptive roots by offering a truly bespoke holiday gifting service to meet different needs and budgets.

Pre-made gifts are available in-store, some featuring this year’s exclusive Jeremyville Christmas packaging or, if you’re after something specific, you can create your own with the help of the Kiehl’s team. From hand creams to hair care (and so much more), there’s something really special about putting together a personalised package. All gifts are then wrapped in the store’s luxurious gift wrap (for free!) – giving you one less job to do later (just call them Santa’s Little Helpers, eh?!). Pop into Kiehl’s today to find out more!

gifts for pampering

Lush Christmas 

Does it get more fun than Lush at Christmas? Every year I wonder if they can possibly come up with something new (and secretly hope that a few old favourites will return!), and each time I’m completely dazzled with seasonal soaps, glittering gifts and – oh yes – special edition smellies!

I love their brightly-packaged gift sets, which come in a whole range of shapes and sizes. The Ice Ice Baby gift (left) has your secret Santa all wrapped up, coming in at just under a tenner and containing a super fresh combo of Igloo soap and Snowman shower jelly. Best Wishes on the other hand (IN the other hand??) is pretty much a mini ‘best of’ Lush Christmas, with the Golden Wonder bath bomb, Ruby Red Slippers bubble bar and Snowcastle soap. Put it this way: if this set were to sing, it’d sound like Bing Crosby…

Lush’s Christmas range starts at just £2 and you can browse it here!

gifts for pampering

Peace, Love, Pop by Paul Mitchell 

Paul Mitchell is bringing some comic-inspired style to Christmas stockings everywhere this year with their Peace, Love, Pop gift collection. Vibrant, playful and full of fun, there are 10 sets available to help cover every hair type and give your tresses a pop of style during party season!

From boosting colour, to hydrating and fighting frizz, Paul Mitchell are making it their mission to keep everyone feeling their very best at Christmas with these cruelty-free products. I love this SHINE set – designed to keep hair looking smooth and sleek with some of the brand’s popular Super Skinny hair treats. Each gift set sold from Peace, Love, Pop also supports BABY2BABY, which helps to provide children from low-income households with clothes, nappies and other necessities. The collection ranges from £20-40 and you can find out more online.

gifts for pampering

I don’t know about you, but all of this talk of relaxing and pampering is making me want to hop into a frothy, bubbly bath! I hope that these picks help inspire you to spoil someone this Christmas – and be sure to let me know what your top gifts are for bath, body and beyond this year.

With love, bath bombs and red bows…

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