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Something different

Out and about, Something different

Magical Westonbirt, courtesy of Co-Wheels car club

December 22, 2015
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It was mid-December, and I was feeling decidedly un-Christmassy. Step up Co-Wheels and Westonbirt Arboretum for some magical, enchanted Christmas cheer to get me in the mood!

I was invited to use a Co-Wheels low emission car (which was, very handily, right around the corner from where we live) to go to Westonbirt Arboretum’s Enchanted Christmas event. Co-wheels is an independently owned car club which specialises in low emission, hybrid and electric cars. You can hire the cars on a pay-as-you-go basis, which is great if you need a car every now and again and for short journeys like this one, but don’t want the hassle of owning a car and trying to find parking (which, if you live pretty much anywhere in Bristol, is a nightmare!!). Plus, it’s super easy to sign up and get started – you get sent a smart card in the post and you use this to ‘unlock’ and use the car, using the online booking system.

And for those of you who don’t know, Westonbirt light up the hundreds of trees they have at the arboretum with colourful and ambient lighting. It sounds a bit strange, but the effect is simply beautiful!

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I’m afraid I couldn’t do the lit up trees justice with my iPhone…my camera was non-functioning :( however hopefully you can see how pretty and atmospheric it was!

The trail took around an hour or so to go around – or longer if you stopped off more and took loads of photos like we did! So perfect for a family outing. I have to say it was lovely seeing it so busy at night, and their were points along the way here you could grab a snack or some mulled wine – yummy!

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Check out www.forestry.gov.uk/westonbirt-christmas for more information of what’s on at Westonbirt into the New Year, and I would seriously recommend looking in to the Enchanted Christmas event for next year.

Also, for more information about Co-wheels, visit www.co-wheels.org.uk or you can join as a member here.

Merry Christmas!

Out and about, Something different

Ted & Muffy do good boots (and shoes)

October 16, 2015
ted and muffy

I was a little bit in heaven last Thursday. I got invited to the launch event for the Ted & Muffy A/W collection at the newly renovated and refitted store on Milsom St in Bath.

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The evening began with some nibbles, Prosecco and a browse around the store, before we were given an introduction to the shoes and the story behind Ted & Muffy. The brand has come from what used to be DUO, but it’s been given a serious makeover in terms of their offering and the general look and feel.

The shop was lovely too, with lots of exposed brickwork and a clean white finish that, with the lighting, set off the shoes and and boots beautifully.

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And can we just take a moment to appreciate the branding. I love it! The drawings are just lovely and fit brilliantly with the whimsical, yet classic, style of the store and the boots themselves.

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The brogues were beautiful too. A girl can never have too many brogues… (pretty sure that’s a well known saying somewhere).

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We were invited to try on any pair we liked, and although I was totally torn between over-the-knee boots and a pair of lace-up ankle boots, in the end the over-the-knee style won me over. I am totally indecisive most of the time, and the amazing choice didn’t make it any easier!

The leather is so soft, and they fit like a glove. The expert fitters were on hand in the store to make sure I got the perfect fitting pair – they not only make sure you’re wearing the correct shoe size but check your calf width as well, to make sure that the boots look and feel great. This pair are the Quest boots. And when I wear them I certainly feel like I can go anywhere and do anything!!

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Having not been exposed to the Ted & Muffy brand much before I am a complete convert now. The shoes are expensive, but they appear to be very well made, and so I’ll be checking out how they fare over the rainy Bristolian winter. If they survive that, they’ll survive anything! Add to that the amazing sounding plans for the next season, it looks like Ted & Muffy are on to a winner.

An outfit post with these boots will be on here very soon!!

<3 Sofia

Out and about, Something different

Bespoked – the UK handmade bicycle show

April 24, 2015
bespoked

Last Saturday 18th April we took a quick look around the Bespoked Bicycle show – having acquired some tickets through our printers at work (I think they printed all the brochureware and tickets for them), it seemed a shame to miss it. I wanted to go to it last year but we couldn’t make it, so it was good to be able to go and see what was there this year.

The show was held in the Passenger Shed next to Temple Meads station. This was the first time i’d been to an event there! I know, I know…bad form. It’s a beautiful space, especially on such a sunny day.

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I mostly took photos of the pretty bikes…and there were so many amazing looking bikes! It was hard to know where to start with them all. They were all a marvel of engineering, and so many amazing colours, too, as well as quite a few wooden numbers. Tony and I did wonder whether a wooden framed bike would be a good idea in real life (he particularly commented on the mountain bikes with wooden frames), but they did look very impressive.

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This bike just above was one of my favourites, purely for it’s apparent simplicity, and the simplicity of the stand as well. It was just this one bike, standing on its own, looking very impressive. It’s by a company called AOI.CYCLE , although at a cool €1,599.00, I think I might have to save up a bit in order to afford it!!! Plus I would NOT trust Bristol with it – I don’t think i’d want to lock it up anywhere!

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This bamboo bike was pretty cool, but again we wondered whether it would stand the test of time? This one was by Virk Designs.

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I loved these two bikes by Seren Bicycles. They immediately caught my eye with the pretty pale blues and greens. Apparently the green one was custom built for a girl doing John O’Groats to Lands End. I asked if the hard leather seat would be replaced with something softer for such a long journey, but apparently not! Good luck, lady, who ever you are! If I spot you on your way to Land’s End i’ll ask how your bum is feeling, and comment on your pretty bike :)

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These guys had a particularly cool logo and stand – Field Bicycles. Plus they had some of the nicest colour bikes (that’s about as technical as i’ll get!).

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How could I resist taking a photo of this beautiful turquoise number! I think they were all custom built for customers, so not for general sale.

All in all it was a great show – particularly if you are reeeeaaally in to bikes. For me it was more about how ‘pretty’ they looked, and daydreaming about swanning around Bristol on a powder blue bike, with chrome mudguards and tan leather handles and seats…Well, maybe one day it might happen!

<3 Sofia

Out and about, Something different

The Ladyboys of Bangkok are oh so fabulous!

April 21, 2015
ladyboys of bangkok

Last night we went to see the Ladyboys of Bangkok in their popular cabaret show, over in Castle Park. I had no idea what to expect (to the point where when I told a work colleague, she was like ‘oh I thought you were going to see one of those Thai ping-pong shows…’) and no, it wasn’t like that at all!

Cabaret shows aren’t really my thing, or at least I thought they weren’t, maybe they are and I never knew it?! To be fair I haven’t gone to see many cabaret shows in my time, so I haven’t got a lot to compare this to. The ladyboys were great, I loved it! They were tongue-in-cheek funny, and all of the ladyboys were so beautiful! You honestly couldn’t tell they were men…(well, maybe apart from a couple of them…)

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Their repertoire included songs by Rihanna, they did a 3 minute Sound of Music medley (AMAZING!), Katy Perry, Tina Turner, Diana Ross to name a few!

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The masks for sale in the foyer were particularly fetching!

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Any opportunity to take a photo!

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This is when they did ‘Let it Go’ from Frozen. Although, I must be the only person in the world who has STILL not seen Frozen!! And from the sounds of it, i’m totally missing out.

Their dancing was brilliant, and you couldn’t help but smile, sing and dance along while watching the show – I couldn’t have asked for a more random, funny and entertaining Monday night out with the girls!

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Tina was my absolute favourite. This ladyboy ROCKED every single act, and was hilarious to boot!

This is definitely going to be an annual thing from now on. Next time we’ll do Friday or Saturday night, for sure!!

Sofia <3

Something different

The Fishee Designs photo booth needs your support!

March 13, 2015

So i’m promoting something a little bit different today. My friend Emily is running a crowdfunding project over on FundSurfer, and is looking for backers to help her reach her goal. She runs the Fishee Designs Photo Booth, and is looking for backers on FundSurfer to help her expand her business and make the photo booth service even better than it already is.

So who or what is the Fishee Designs Photo Booth?

“Fishee Designs Photo Booth is a one of kind open air, stylish, unique and colourful photo booth experience. We have taken the wedding world by a glitter storm and have been used by thousands of people to create the most awesome photo booth photos known to the UK. In the photo booth world, we have some of the best prop boxes in the country and we are proud to say we curate each themed packaged to the highest standard with our own unique style. It is important to us that our guests have fun, but also come out with awesome looking photos too.

Fishee Designs Photo Booth hire is one of a kind, and the baby of Emily Fisher’s inventive imagination. She has created something truly unlike anything else on the market. Emily custom designed the photo booth herself to ensure it was the prettiest photo booth hire in the land! The Vintage Shabby Chic Photo Booth Hire Package is surrounded by lace and roses, whilst the Comic Book Photo Booth pops with colour and superheros, each package providing the highest quality photos.”

Here’s a bit more about Emily and the photo booth in this video she made:

I know Emily has worked extremely hard to get this photo booth up and running, and I think it’s a really great concept, so get backing!

Here’s the link again to take you to Emily’s Fundsurfer page: Pledge money to the Fishee Designs Photo Booth

Big love

Sofia

Something different

2014 – a year in house renovations, sewing and forming new goals

December 30, 2014

sequin flower

I’m sure I won’t be the first to say that this year has flown by! It’s been a year filled with birthdays, weddings, friends, house renovations and meeting some great new people. It was a landmark year in terms of birthdays – I turned 30 (eeek!) and so did Tony.

March marked the beginning of our house renovations, which took up almost all of our time and blogging took a bit of a back seat for a while. We’ll soon have it all starting again after a little bit of a break from all the building work, but I think this time around i’m going to be much more prepared and organised, and will be updating our progress on the blog later in the year.

Dining room

Sewing featured heavily in my year – I did 2 courses at the Folk House dressmaking course, and not only have a learned loads but I also made a lot more than I thought: a blazer, top, skirt and a dress…and that’s only the things i’ve blogged about! Sewing has become a bit of an obsession, but I suppose as far as obsessions go it’s not a bad one to have!

victoria blazer

In the autumn I started up my LOVE Bristol posts again. I’ve featured Rhubarb Jumble and Pod this year, and i’m looking forward to getting loads more of Bristol’s independent and unique shops and characters on the pages of my blog.

I realised that I wanted to make more of this amazing city I live in. I am honestly always so thankful of being here – it could have been so different when I thin back on the various choices in my life, and everyday i’m glad I decided to stay and make my life here. Bristol never fails to impress.

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Goals for 2015

I always say I need to get more organised, but really, I do!! I’m going to be realistic in my blogging goals – I know I can’t do it all with having a full time job and trying to have a life as well, so i’m going to make sure that my blogs are about quality, not necessarily quantity. I am excited about the next year in terms of featuring more about Bristol and the people that make this city so great, and about having a great group of blogging friends to go to as well with the #blogclub.

I’ve got plans for this blog in 2015, but they’re still very much in my head and not fully formed…however I feel like this next year is going to be the one where it’s going to come together. Watch this space!

I’m also going to get more ambitious in my sewing – there is so much still to learn and I want to be able to make as much of what I wear as possible. It’s going to be hard, but you have to start somewhere!

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Here’s to 2015, happy new year!

Sofia <3

Something different

Marks and Spencer: Magic and Sparkle event at Cribbs Causeway

November 27, 2014
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Last night was fun – I got invited to the Marks and Spencer Christmas promo event “Magic and Sparkle” (named after the 2 fairies in their new ad campaign). The event took place in Cribbs Causeway, which luckily I was able to get a lift to with the lovely Lily and Lyzi, who I met for the first time.

The event was a mixture of fashion, christmas, food and beauty (a pretty good mix, actually!) and it was lovely to spend some more time with some of the Bristol blogging crew. I cam away from the event more inspired about blogging than ever, and it’s great feeling that way :)DSC_0892 DSC_0896 DSC_0891I was actually very pleasantly surprised by the clothes – there were some lovely pieces, and since I work so close to Broadmead I will definitely be going to check out M&S for some Christmas party attire and accessories. One of my favourite items of clothing from the night was this gorgeous ‘marble’ print shirt. It would have been lovely to be able to try all the clothes on!

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I also got my nails done in this beautiful bright coral colour – I felt very glam, I don’t often get my nails done!

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Thanks so much to the Marks and Spencer and the PR team for letting me join in the fun. :)

Sofia <3

Out and about, Something different

GF Smith – a retrospective in paper

November 26, 2014
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Last week I had the pleasure of attending an exhibition by the paper merchant GF Smith. We use their papers in some of the clients I work with, and they always send the designer lots of lovely paper sample books which are almost like works of art in themselves! The exhibition was held at the Bower Ashton campus of UWE, and although a small selection of some of the paper samples and books were on show, it was still a really lovely exhibition.

Please excuse the less-than-ideal photos – the papers were displayed under glass so it was really hard to take a decent photo!

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The exhibits took you from the humble beginnings in the early 1900s (although the company was formed in 1885), all the way through to modern day print. I have to say my favourite era was probably the 1920s/30s – the print was just so eccentric, pretty and stylish. They were all out extravagant and I can just imagine the ladies at the time, sitting down to write their letters on some gorgeous, flocked coloured paper…

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Some of the fashion students at UWE were also comissioned to create ‘outfits’ out of GF Smith paper. I particularly liked this child’s skirt. Like an art deco tulip!

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I particularly love this cover by the American paper mill, Strathmore Paper Company. It says ” Which cover shall you use? The answer to that question is in another question…”What is the task the cover must perform?”

I think that is so relevant, still today! Paper choice is really important in print projects, whether they’re big or small, and it’s always right to bear in mind the purpose that the cover of something should have. Love it!

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Thanks to GF Smith for having us!

Sofia <3

 

Something different, Trips away

4 years later – feeling nostalgic for New Zealand and care-free living

November 20, 2014
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I have been feeling somewhat nostalgic of the ’round the world’ trip Tony and I went on four years ago. The clear skies and crisp, autumn weather have for some reason got me thinking back to when we were in our van, travelling down both the north and south island, stopping off whenever we fancied it.

Luckily, we kept a blog of our whole trip, and looking back on it every now and again brings back so many fond memories. And it’s quite funny that, at the moment in Bristol, there’s talk of having reached ‘peak burger‘, and 4 years ago almost to the day Tony and I were preparing to go to two of Wanaka and Queenstown’s famous burger restaurants: Red Star and FergBurger, and Tony was gearing himself up for both of their burger challenges. In fact, he even did a blog post about it, giving various ratings for the two (FergBurger won!).

ferg burger ferg burgerTony and the ‘Big Al’

lake wanaka Lake Wanaka on the South Island of New Zealand

In total, we travelled almost 4,500 miles around New Zealand in our Isuzu van, and it was one of the highlights of the trip for me (and I don’t even drive – I got to take in all this amazing scenery!) Don’t get me wrong, I couldn’t be happier with where I am at the moment – we own a lovely house, live near all our friends, have great jobs and all that, but sometimes it’s nice to think back to those times when you didn’t have any of that to think about. Our most pressing decision would be where to stop off for the night, or whether we’d be eating peanut butter sandwiches again for lunch or if we would treat ourselves to a pot noodle…decisions, decisions!

If you want some travel inspiration and are interested in taking a look at where we went and what we got up to, check out www.southernhemisnuggets.blogspot.com (Nuggets from the Southern Hemisphere….don’t ask why we chose that name!!). I’m so glad we kept that blog now, as it’s so lovely to look back on and re-ignite memories of the trip.

Are you feeling nostalgic for anything at the moment?

Sofia <3