Back To Uni with HEMA

0 comments

It's come to that time of year again when all the students flock back to their uni halls in preparation for the start of uni. Freshers week is upon us and it's time to stock up on all the supplies you'll need to last you through the year! Stationary shopping was always my favourite thing about a new school year and I could spend forever in shops finding the coolest pens and prettiest notebooks. As a stationary hoarder, I couldn't resist but to say yes when HEMA got in contact to send me some of their new Back To School range!


As a brand I'd never heard of before, I was keen to learn more about HEMA. All products are designed by HEMA at their HQ in Amsterdam, and then all the best core products undergo vigorous testing so the quality can be relied on. The Dutch lifestyle retailer is renowned for it's high quality, expert design and affordable prices for their everyday essentials. 

The package they sent me was full of everything you could ever want. Notepads, diaries, pens, stickers and so much more. The diary is 2017-2018, which is so perfect for students planning all their work for the upcoming year, but also for me planning shoots with clients etc until I can buy a full 2018 diary! The little calendar at the start is also great for highlighting days that I've been booked up for already too. 


HEMA have all the essentials but also a few fun things too like stickers, post it notes, paperclips and pins to keep everything looking pretty and organised at the same time. My favourite thing has to be the silver glitter washi tape, like who doesn't want to jazz up their notes a bit with a bit of glitter? Also paperclips in the shape of cats?! I'm sold!

HEMA products are all very high quality but cheap without being boring and tacky. I wish I knew about the brand when I was hoarding stationary all the time in the build up to my studies. I would've definitely had the cutest stationary in the class! You can shop for HEMA products at their UK site here


Are you a stationary hoarder just like me? Notebooks are my thing!

*This post was written in collaboration with HEMA but all views are my own.

Things I Learnt Travelling Alone

0 comments

Last year I flew over to Milan for a few days to watch some football and due to living about 100 miles away from everyone else going I flew out and stayed on my own. It was an experience to say the least...


TRAVELLING ALONE IS HARD

I'm just gonna go all out and state the obvious here. Travelling alone for the first time is hard. Visiting a country where you don't speak the language is always daunting but doing it on your own is on another level. I flew into an airport outside Milan which was fine as I knew how to get into central Milan, it was just a simple coach trip but after this I was completely lost. I felt so tiny in a big city and probably spent an hour trying to locate somewhere with wifi so I could have a meltdown and panic message Becky for advice. As always she was a star and I was soon on my way to my apartment. You're completely on your own though, so always have a back up plan. I found eating alone the hardest, I couldn't hack it at all. Luckily my apartment had an oven so I picked up a pizza for the first night before my friends arrived. It was a rubbish pizza and absolutely nothing on the divine pizza I had out the next evening, trust me guys the food in Italy is incredible. Pizza and pasta galore. Give me all the cards.

ALWAYS HAVE A MAP

I'm not saying you've gotta carry round an old fashioned map of the city with you at all times because to be honest I wouldn't know what to do with one even if I had one but phones are brilliant these days. Making sure you always have access to the internet when you're abroad is so helpful incase you get lost anywhere as finding wifi isn't always easy as I found out. Most mobile companies do brilliant packages for data abroad so I'd definitely look into what your provider offers before you travel! I also found that screenshotting my route for the day made it a lot easier and I didn't use much internet at all as I'd already worked out my route in the morning.

TAKING PHOTOS IS GREAT, EXCEPT WHEN YOU WANT THEM OF YOURSELF

Being a blogger and going to such a beautiful city like Milan meant I took a lot of pictures but I quickly realised that I didn't have anyone to take any photos of me. I'm not a massive fan of having my photo taken by people that I'm not comfortable with so asking strangers was completely out the window. I liked being on my own so I could take my time to perfect my shots without having anyone there moaning at me to hurry up but I really felt like I missed out on the cliche tourist photos, especially for Instagram! If you've got the confidence to ask strangers to take photos of you, just go for it. There were lots of tourists about and I wish I had asked them but I couldn't pluck up the courage at all, even after some strangers asked me to take a photo of them!

HAVE A DAY PLAN

Having a plan of my day before I left the apartment every morning made my trip run a lot smoother. I knew what I wanted to see and where I wanted to go. I wasn't overly fussed on paying for things so I spent a lot of my time wandering around the streets of Milan and visiting their main tourist areas like Duomo di Milano which is absolute beautiful in real life, I'd 100% recommend visiting if you haven't already! You'll also find yourself wrapped up in your day so much that you'll forget that you're there alone, taking away the lonely factor as such! I flew out to Milan two days before any of my friends arrived and I'd be lying if I said I didn't get lonely at first, I didn't have anyone to talk to and whatsapping friends back home wasn't quite cutting it. I didn't do a lot of the things I wanted to due to spending a lot of time in my apartment which I regret more than anything. Next time I travel, I'm definitely making set day plans.

GET OUT THERE AND JUST ASK

Looking back, my trip would've been a lot more enjoyable if I didn't spend the first day completely lost resulting me being a mess when I got to the apartment and wanting to hide there for the next couple of days. If you really are lost or uncertain on something, just ask somebody. Finding somebody to ask may not always be the easiest thing to do but targeting tourists is always a good way to go. They've usually been in a similar situation themselves so are happy to help. If all else fails, tourist attractions are a good way to go to find someone to chat to. They normally speak a variety of languages and will hopefully be able to assist you! Don't fly to another country and spend lots of time regretting not doing more like I did.


I'm hoping to travel solo again this year but I will definitely be more prepared to avoid anybody seeing me having a little meltdown in a strange city, that can wait until I get to the hotel this time! Where would you guys recommend for travelling solo?

How To Style: Trench Coat Edition

0 comments

Usually I'm not one to talk about fashion and I'm pretty useless when it comes down to it at the end of the day. Jack Wills challenged me to write a post about how to style a trench coat and I thought it'd be quite fun to push my fashion knowledge and see what works when styling a piece like this. 

Image courtesy of Jack Wills

First of all, trench coats are everywhere but I always thought they just came in a very plain looking beige colour that I could never ever pull of. Nowadays I walk into shops to see quite a few colours to choose from which is so refreshing as beige isn't a good look on me at all. In my eyes, they're the perfect summer to autumn transition in a coat; they're not too light so you freeze to death, but they're not so heavy that you regret putting it on as soon as you walk out the door.

You can style a trench a million ways, it's a true foolproof coat, but here's my top picks for keeping it as fashionable as can be. 

Everyday Chic; A casual day out for lunch with the girls, throw on a simple stripy t-shirt, some ankle grazer jeans, a cute pair of trainers and a trench thrown over the top. Keeping it unbelted will add to the carefree vibe of the outfit.

Work Chic; A trench coat can look oh so professional when it comes down to it, paired with your normal work clothes (a black dress and some heels to match would be my go to). Draw it in tight at the waist to enhance your figure and strut your stuff as you look like fire walking into work.

Night Out Chic; There's nothing worse than dressing up all glam to go out for drinks and walking out the door and freezing your legs off. Grab a long black trench coat to chuck over the top, you'll thank yourself when you're walking about at 1am searching for some cheesy chips.  Pick up your favourite clutch, sling on a pair of cute heels and you're all set! 

Whilst searching for trench coats to give me inspiration for this post, I came across so many gorgeous coats! Here's my favourite picks below;



I think a trench coat is next on my list of things to buy now... 

*This post was written in collaboration with Jack Wills but all views are my own





17 Things I've Learnt So Far in 2017

0 comments

In words spoken by Kylie Jenner, 2016 was the year of realising things and oh boy yes it was but 2017 has opened my eyes to the world and made me think about things a lot more than usual. It's been a weird year already and we're not even halfway through. It's been a rollercoaster, it's had the best and the worst of times all mixed together. I can't put into words what my life is like right now but here's some things I've realised this year so far...


1. Taking a leap of faith towards your dream career is challenging. Taking a massive jump into self employed life has been hard, I can't quite come to terms with the fact that I've actually done it and it doesn't seem real at all. All that said, it's liberating, I feel stronger than I ever could've dreamed and I've never been happier.

2. Don't let the energy of a bad breakup get you down. Focus all that energy into making a better version of yourself and follow your dreams. There is always a light at the end of the tunnel.

3. Moving out is huge and it really should be thought through a lot more than I did but on the other hand moving home in defeat isn't too bad either. It's not something anyone ever wants to do but family are always there at the end of the day.

4. Just because your path in life is different doesn't mean you're lost. It's good to be different, you own that shit, be a boss. 

5. I am too emotionally attached to chicken nuggets, I realised this after I cried in the middle of the road at 1am after I dropped my nuggets. 

6. Falling in love with my work and my photography is hands down the best thing I've ever done. It sets my soul on fire and I'm pretty sure my camera's never gonna turn round and tell me it doesn't love me. As long as I've got a camera in hand I don't think you'll ever catch me without a smile on my face.

7. I don't have my shit together, my online persona puts across a front that I'm bossing life when in reality I'm not but that's okay. It's overrated to have your shit together anyway.

8. Support your friends in every way you can, especially your creative friends. Self employed life ain't easy kids! Go to a show, buy some art, pay for your photos. Remember your favourite bands/photographers/artists were all locals to somebody, support local creatives. 

9. There is a massive issue with gender in all industries but especially the music industry. I am forever being offered specific work or tours with bands to then later be rejected because of my gender. Sexism is real folks. 

10. It's nobody else's business how you spend your hard earned money. Buying something expensive doesn't mean you're not relatable anymore, you just like nice things. If you can afford them then what's the problem? Buy that designer handbag, book that trip to the Maldives, spend £4k+ on a camera, you do you babes.

11. I realised I have to do my own tax return this year and I already want to die. Send help and chocolate and copious amounts of wine.

12. I am the queen of overworking myself until I'm too ill to work. I need to learn to take a break before my eyes go square from staring at a screen all day.

13.  When people ask you what you do, "I shoot people for a living" is never a good answer. It's funny though.

14. If you don't ask, you don't get. Contact people, make friends, network, get your brand out there!

15. Pizza and cocktails are always a good idea.

16. Travelling the world is really cool, even if it's just to a new town in your own country. I can't wait for more adventures in the rest of 2017, especially exploring so many new cities in the UK whilst touring with bands.

17. My job is no where near as easy as people think it is. I am forever explaining to people that it's not all travelling around and happy snapping. There's lots of late nights, early mornings, bad lighting, stressful shoots with impatient people, chasing invoices and a hell of a lot of junk food. There's only so much junk food you can eat before you start craving vegetables. 

Instagram

© perksofbeingami. Design by MangoBlogs.