I want to ride my bicycle...

For a while now, I've been eyeing up peoples' bicycles as they pass me by, 
admiring girls in their cute (yet practical) bike ride outfits,
and knowing that this pay day was going to be time for a two-wheeled investment...

...Isn't she beautiful!!

Samm is a mad keen biker but I actually haven't ridden a bike properly since I was about 10, 
so this is an adventure for me. 
When the man at the shop asked me if I wanted to take her for a ride, 
I had to sternly tell him not to laugh 
(which he did anyway!)

One of my biggest driving (cycling) forces in my desire to get some wheels has been the beautiful blog The Citybirds Nest where the lovely cb often shares her little biking adventures.
I just had to see what all the fuss was about!

Does anybody else cycle? Any tips?
I'm already having little panic moments of 
"can I really carry off helmet hair at this age?", 
"what if I can't remember how to put the chain back on when it comes off?", 
"how do girls stay decent when they wear skirts on a bike?"

I'm off for a bike ride and a picnic on Wednesday to celebrate Samm's last deadline of his course, 
Here's hoping the sun stays out until then.

Have a gorgeous weekend.


Wedding Wednesdays 6 - Bridesmaids dresses

This weekend, three of my dearest friends came to visit me so that we could go Bridesmaid dress shopping together.

Now I have a very set idea in my head of what I thought I wanted... 
Samm's tartan is a lovely rich hunter green colour, 
so it was obvious that hunter green should be the colour of the dresses.
And it's going to be winter... therefore freezing, so the sensible choice is clearly to opt for floor length!

Monsoon - sold out
Turns out though that planning a wedding has not stopped me from shunning the obvious and the sensible in favour of something that stole my heart.

Once they'd all tried on some "the kind of thing I thought I wanted" dresses, 
and all looked totally unlike themselves and not incredibly comfortable,
I decided that we should instead be looking for something we all liked, rather than something that would make them a perfect part of the backdrop.
After all, your bridesmaids are your friends, not your wallpaper.

So the dress to the left is what my lovely ladies will be wearing on the big day.
Funnily, it's been on my Pinterest for a while now on my "clothes shopping list" board... and it hadn't even dawned on me what a great bridesmaid dress it would make until I saw it with them.

I'm thinking gorgeous cream faux fur shrugs, sweet thick tights and classic court shoes.

I'm so excited to have found them!
And on our first trip.
Sometimes I think I'm pretty great at this getting married business.

For those who are maybe a little disappointed at that "sold out" just below the image, or those who just love to look at pretty dresses... here's some others that really caught my eye.

Both Modcloth


My day off in photos

One of the beautiful things about working in lots of different places,
is that although I work crazy hours,
I get every other Wednesday off work.

Now at the moment, these Wednesdays tend to be when I do my wedding planning, 
but seeing as my Bridesmaids are visiting this weekend,
I thought I'd use today to have some me time...

Best breakfast ever... Doughnut and Earl Grey tea
Krispy Kreme just opened in Hull yesterday, just a 5 minute walk from my office.
So a couple of workmates and I naturally treated ourselves to a box of 12 for lunch between 3 of us.
I made the smart-doughnut-lover decision and saved this beauty for breakfast.
(Good job my wedding dress is currently a little on the large size... we'll see to that!)

An hour spent in the garden watching my little rabbit lady run around.
(Yes, we do have an armchair in our garden... best not to ask)

This may have been my actual favourite moment of the day.
Our garden is a grubby patio and a big overgrown lawn full of dandelions.
There's not much going on out there...
But the people who lived here before us were really keen gardeners, and obviously a teeny seed found its way down the cracks in the patio and grown into this lovely but lonely lower.

Some precious quiet time catching up on all my favourite magazines.

And my absolute favourite Wednesday job... painting my nails.

What do you do on your day off?
Is it just me who needs to enjoy their own company once in a while?


My 2012 sketch book / art journalling so far...

At the start of this year, as well as lots of other New Year's Resolutions, 
I decided I wanted to keep some kind of journal. 

You can see the start of my book here,
and another page or two here and here.

I'm happy to say I've really stuck with it.
I've not really done the classic "daily art journal" thing, 
and neither is it a collection of my very best drawing and paintings,
but rather, a spilling of my thoughts and ideas into an incredibly plain looking 99p sketchbook.
...which I really should make an effort to cover nicely!

So... I thought I'd share some more of my pages so far.
This is by no means everything, because let's be honest,
some things are nice to keep in the pages of a book.

"Be Inspired"

"Sincerity - 
Above all, be true to yourself, 
and if you cannot put your heart in it, 
take yourself out of it"

"Il pleut"
(It does this a lot around here)

"Darkness cannot drive out darkness, only light can do that.
Hate cannot drive out hate, only light can do that"
- Martin Luther King

Left: Some pattern experimentings 

Right: "You Can Go Your Own Way" - Fleetwood Mac lyrics

Left: A self portrait.

Right: Helplessness (it had been a long week)

Left: Part of a favourite painting by Gustav Klimt

Right: Things I'd like to do in the not-too-distant future...
1. Go to an art gallery
2. Watch a sunrise.
3. Start a recipe book.
4. Own (and successfully take care of) a plant.
5. Have a picnic with Samm.
6. Learn a new skill
- maybe crochet or how to play my ukulele.
7. Spend a day in a library.
8. Cook a full Sunday roast.
9. Write an article.
10. Write a dress I made for myself.

Miscellaneous doodlings

"Sometimes you're supposed to feel awkward.
Sometimes you're supposed to be vulnerable in front of people.
Sometimes it's necessary because it's all part of you getting to the next part of yourself"
From "The Book of Tomorrow" by Cecelia Ahern

I've also been working on some more "neat" art pieces that I want to share soon.

It's nice though to show the scruffy, the imperfect and the usually hidden.


Wedding Wednesdays 5 - Hair piece / Headband Inspiration

The dress is bought, the Save the Dates are in the post, Bridesmaids shopping trip is booked.
Time to kick back and peruse Folksy and Etsy and all my favourite wedding blogs, 
furiously pinning away at everything I dream of having for the big day. 
How did people plan weddings before Pinterest??

This week I've been eyeing up beautiful hairpieces handmade by some incredible designers...

I love the soft gold tones in this, 
and with hair worn like this, the off-centre focus is just beautiful.

My favourite "if I decide to go for something a little quirky" option.
I love that it looks kooky yet still so elegant.

I adore this style of wide headband. 
The antique tones in this would just be perfect with everything else I have planned.

Just so dreamy. 
This, in my opinion, is a proper fairytale bridal crown.

I love the green foliage to tie in with our colour scheme.
Something this naturally beautiful and effortless looking is pretty much exactly what I'm looking for.

(who I must say, I have a total soft spot for after meeting her last year at the National Wedding Fayre)
The attention to detail in all her pieces is just astonishing, 
and I love the sweet beaded leaves on this.

A bit more for a Springtime wedding maybe... 
but I just love everything by Garden of Whimsy.
Also, is it just me who wants to run to town for some auburn hair dye 
seeing beautiful photos like this?

Too many beautiful choices!
Which one is your favourite?