Mani Monday #13

Welcome to another Mani Monday!

I saw this design on Nailap, a great iPhone app for people to post their nail pictures and get inspired by others. So, yes I may have stolen this design but that’s never stopped us before!


Today I began with catching up on Hawaii Five-O, a thriller cop drama with the sexy Alex O’Loughlin, so I have entertainment while it’s drying time.

I started with a cream base colour, applying two – three coats to ensure good coverage, which I believe helps when it comes to chipping.

Once the base coat had dried and I’d had my fill of beautiful Hawaiian surfers, I started on the leaves. Now, if you have done ombre nails then you’ll be familiar with using a makeup sponge, if not then go find your supply or head to your local store and get some because they make nail art so much more fun – but more importantly easier!

I dipped back into my nail varnish collection for a coral orange and a red but for a spring/summer look you could always opt for a green. Using the sponge, I dabbed the colour to form a circular shape in the centre of the nail.

All that’s then left to do is the silhouette of the tree trunk/branches. I used a basic black colour and a fine paint brush but if you have a nail art pen in black that would be perfect too!

I started with one line from the tip of the nail and curved it to the centre before adding the branches. Finish off with a top coat once everything is dry as you don’t want it to smudge.

And there you have it, cute and just a little bit different!

– love Clare x

The Juice Diet: Week #2

Well that’s another week down!

Juice Diet - Week TwoI have got to say, I’m not feeling as rejuvenated as I was promised I would. I am still a little tired, cold, and quite lethargic on the juice days. And I am going to the toilet – a lot.

The tiredness is starting to get to me now, I have no energy to do anything other than sit and watch TV, and I am having some very early nights and still waking up tired.

IBecause of this I am going to do some more research and reassess the diet accordingly, but for now week 2 is over! Here are some of the recipes for the juices I have had this week.

*You’re not supposed to have too many fruit juices as they have so much natural sugar in them, but I can’t resist a nice fruit juice for breakfast.*

My juices are made up to fill 500ml glass bottles and two of my juice days looked like this:

Breakfast: 3 pink grape fruit and 1/2 an orange

Lunch: 2 apples, 1 head of broccoli, 5 carrots, 1/2 a lemon, a handful spinach and 1 courgette

Dinner: 5 carrots, 1/2 a red cabbage, 1 thumb of ginger, 3 oranges, a handful of spinach, and 1/2 a lemon

During the day I am also drinking 6-8 pints of cold water, as well as 2-3 cups of hot water and lemon, and the odd proper cup of tea (no sugar, and a tiny amount of skimmed milk).

It doesn’t look a lot, but honestly I am very full off the amount I am having, but as I  said in week 1, I don’t know how people manage six!

I just need some more energy – if there are any of you lovely readers out there that can tell me what I’m doing wrong, or what I could do differently, then I would love to hear from you!

So, for the stats… not going to lie I am a little disappointed.

From last week I have lost:

– 0.5 inch from hips (1 inch overall)

– no change from waist (1 inch overall)

– 0.5 inch from bust (1 inch overall)

– 1lb (4lbs overall)

– love Carla x


The Breakfast Club – 30 years on…

“And these children that you spit on, as they try to change their worlds are immune to your consultations. They’re quite aware of what they’re going through…” – (David Bowie)

Shermer High School

It was 30 years ago on March 24 1984 that five strangers had to sacrifice a whole Saturday in detention for whatever it was they did wrong. And what they did was wrong – but they thought it was crazy to write an essay telling their teacher who they thought they were.


Because he saw them as he wanted to see them – in the simplest terms, in the most convenient definitions. But what they found out (and more importantly, what they taught us) was that each one of us is a brain…and an athlete…and a basket case…a princess…and a criminal.


The Breakfast Club

The Breakfast Club will forever live on as the quintessential 80s teen movie, but the roles that John Hughes created for each of the five students still rings true in the hallways of every school, even today.

The athletes and the popular girls still rule the school, the nerds continue to take extra-curricular activities, the outcasts remain isolated from every clique, and the bad boys are definitely smoking behind the gym.

The first time I saw this film I’m not ashamed to say that it changed my life – not in any particular way as such, but in that way only certain films can. Almost like you feel better for having watched it.

It’s unbelievable to think that it’s been 30 years since that (fictional) detention took place, but what I do believe is that my very own John Bender is still out there (yep – I’m a fan of the criminal. A big one.)

Cue fist thrust and Simple Minds…

– love Stef x

Leather & Lace

There are two kinds of dress which I’ve always loved and, if in doubt, fall back on for nights out – leather and lace.

Maybe it’s the Stevie Nicks fan in me, but either way, these little beauties have caught my eye:

Leather and Lace

H&M Black Leather Dress // Miss Selfridge Black Leather Cut Out Dress // The Outnet Brandi Leather Dress // Lipsy Red Lace Dress // H&M Black Lace Dress //

Are you a leather or lace fan?

– love Stef x

Mani Monday #12


I’ve noticed recently a lot of people doing stone effect nails and I adore it! The main style and the one I love is the effect that replicates the look of turquoise.

And, even better – it’s actually a really simple effect to create using cling film.

First choose your colours wisely; I’m sticking with a traditional powder blue colour, Chanel Nouvelle Vague and a dark silver, L.A Colours Tropical Storm.

However, you can shake it up if you’re feeling brave and I know gold works really well for a vintage gilded effect.

Paint your nails with your chosen base colour, tidy the edges with a toothpick and leave to dry. As always make sure they are fully dry before the next step – catch up on an episode of Friends or begin the whole process by putting on a film.

Next you want something to use as a paint palette as you will want to drip your second colour on to it for dipping. I personally use the lid off the butter (obviously when you have finished with the tub).

Grab your cling film and scrunch it up, lightly dip it into your varnish and apply to your nails using a dabbing technique – I had to go over mine a few times but the trick is to take your time. Don’t worry about making a mess as you can clean up with a cotton bud and a touch of nail polish remover.

To finish I use a matte top coat (Essie) and Voila! Perfect stone effect nails! Couldn’t be easier (or quicker!).

– love Clare x

The Juice Diet: Week #1.5 – Detox

So as you have read in my previous diet posts, I am embarking upon a serious juice diet, in the hope to shed a few stones (I wish…) and as part of my new ‘Clean Living’ lifestyle, I have done my research and found that there is much more to to this diet than what you put in to your body – and it involves one helluva bath time!

My research showed that hot baths with Dead Sea salts is the way to go – it draws out toxins and all sorts of nasties from your skin. To accompany that, a good scrub down with a natural long handled bath brush makes to make your skin all lovely and smooth. So I purchased some lovely salts from Sainsbury’s, and a scrubbing brush from Tkmaxx, lit some candles and some burning oils, and got in to the hottest bath my skin could take.

The salts came in a plastic re-sealable bag in a box, which for me is a huge no-no, it would end up everywhere if it got knocked over, so I invested in a jar from Poundland – problem solved!

So many sources on the internet say a good 20 minute soak, and a scrubbing down with the brush to the point your skin is red is the way to go. You’re supposed to scrub from the feet up to the heart (something to do with blood flow…) and from the neck down.

My skin turned very red, so I wouldn’t recommend this if you’re intending on leaving the house shortly after with your limbs on show! I made sure to moisturise every inch of my skin with Soap & Glory Smoothie Starand to pout it bluntly, I felt bloody wonderful when I was done. After an hour you could clearly see my skin looked fresher and had colour, to the point I actually got asked for the first time on my life if I’d been at the fake tan. (due to the lack of sunshine in the UK recently, there was no possible reason I could have this natural glow!)

Because of this, I also hunted out a smaller facial brush which I have had forever and never used, and went to town on my face just before bed. When I woke up it literally felt like I was in a new skin. I’m not a morning person, but waking up feeling so fresh could almost turn me. (I said almost…) So It now appears I have a brand new skin regime, all thanks to two brushes! A new skin and natural tan is something I can get on board with, I highly recommend doing this, even if you’re not doing a detox or diet of any kind.

Have you tried the ‘brushing’ technique? I’d love some of your tips if you have, I’m a noob to detox!

– love Carla x

The Juice Diet: Week #1

Week one of my juice diet is over!

I feel good, maybe not as bouncy as I expected with all the amazing nutrients currently pumping through my body, but I’ll give it time.

The first day was the hardest – to start with I was cold, hungry, and there is always cake and/or biscuits in the office making it all the more fun.

My aim was to have one juice every three hours with a pint of water to keep hydrated, and I have now taken to starting my day with a cup of hot lemon, instead of my usual tea. Sounds simple enough?

Well surprisingly I couldn’t actually manage my six juices! In fact, on Day one I forced the third juice down when I got home from work at 7pm and was far too full to have anything else – how people have six I don’t know!

The only downside is I am prone to headaches anyway, so the lack of food has made them come on even stronger, but it wasn’t anything that paracetemol couldn’t sort out!

Day two was easier, but again, only three juices and a million glasses of water, tea or hot lemon meant going to the loo constantly. And I was freezing, though I am usually colder than most people.

Juice Diet - Week OneI was starting to feel quite sleepy and warn out – bearing in mind you do no exercise on this diet and I sit all day in an office – I actually felt like my bones hurt.

I did some research and basically this is my body telling me exactly how tired it really is, without caffeine or sugar to give me unnatural boosts of energy. Turns out it was pretty damn tired..

By the time Day three came, I was in a good routine. Though I will say now,  DO NOT juice for more than 2 days ahead, especially with broccoli in, they turned, it was rank, I nearly vomited!

Day four – A food day! Though I don’t want to send my body into shock, I started the day with a grapefruit juice and some pomegranate seeds.

For lunch I had my homemade tomato soup and for my tea I had garlic and lemon turkey breast steak with roasted tomatoes, spinach, rocket and green beans. This doesn’t sound like much, but by the time I finished my last meal I felt REALLY ill.

My stomach was churning, and I could barely move, so an early night was on the cards – moral of the story, don’t eat too much too soon, I should have stuck with the soup!

The rest of the week consisted of eating raw fruit instead of liquid form, soup, and even a jacket potato.

I bet you’re all bored now aren’t you? You want to know if it has worked don’t you? Well, here are my losses for the week:

– 0.5 inch from hips

– 1 inch from waist

– 0.5 inch from bust

– 3lbs loss overall

Not bad for three days of healthy juices, four days of healthy eating, and absolutely NO CHEESE. That’s right kids, I gave it up for Lent (not that I’m religious in any way),  it just happened to coincide with my diet, because well, everyone’s diet starts on a Tuesday really…

Next week’s post will include some juicing recipes and some yummy low-cal meals for the foodie days.

Get in touch if you have tried the juice diet, I’d love to hear your tips!

– love Carla x