LFW – #TommyNow show. What it was like being there.

I, for one, cannot believe I get to write a blogpost about attending a London Fashion Week show. Ever since I can remember, I have always wanted to attend one. It was always my goal, but, I knew that you had to be invited to the shows, which meant I had no hope at all.  However, whilst scrolling through my Twitter feed I saw that Yanin, (PrettySickly) had an opportunity to attend the Tommy Hilfiger RockCircus show…of course I jumped at the chance and… I won!

Let me start by saying, I cannot thank Yanin enough for choosing me and my plus one Sophie, for this experience. To see any London Fashion Week show would be a plus, but to see the one, where two of my biggest muses, Gigi Hadid show her third Tommy collection and walk the show, as well as her beautiful sister, Bella Hadid (that I have a crush on!) with all their model friends, it was a dream come true. Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU.

The whole process began with the decision of – what am I gonna wear??? For a broke graduate, I knew I would not be able to buy the dream outfit I would want to wear so had to settle for something less. I was umming and ahhing all week before the show, shall I order this? Shall I order that? Hmmm. It wasn’t until the day before I headed into town in hope that something jumped out at me. The weather has turned cold and I was so not up for wearing anything that would make me freezing. So, I settled for this outfit.

A £10 dress from Primark. Thanks Primark, you babes. My favourite part of the outfit is, the studded boots (from H&M) and fishnet socks teamed with the biggest, brightest, Pat Butcher-esque earrings from Topshop.

 

Tommy Hilfiger – RockCircus was on Tuesday 19th September and that afternoon I headed up to London to meet Sophie for pre-fashion week dinner. After dinner in our favourite chinese restaurant in Leicester Square Mr Wong, we headed to the venue. When we arrived, we were in a completely different line and completely bi-passed all the people. How cool. How VIP. How sassy. We had to wait outside for around an hour until we were allowed in.

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When entering the venue we were handed a Tommy Hilfiger drawstring bag. Yaaas!! As soon as we got in, there were stands with the collection that was being shown on. There were photo booths. There were GIF booths. There were people offering wine. There were people offering free burgers, hot dogs and fish and chips. There was a bar. It was all lit up like a circus inside, with a big Tommy RockCircus light up sign. It was something that I had never ever seen before. I was overwhelmed. 

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One, that I was even in the building and I was actually at an invite only London Fashion Week show, but how incredible it looked as well. We found a spot where we could stand and chilled until the show started, trying to spot the celeb just down from where we stood every time a bunch of paparazzi had their cameras flashing. All whilst standing, sipping wine and taking it all in. It wasn’t long until someone who was working the show, walked by and offered a halloumi burger. HALLOUMI BURGER. ALL THE YES FROM ME. Damn, it was sooooo good.

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It wasn’t too long until the show started and that was when the adrenaline kicked in and the buzz was felt in the atmosphere. Gigi walked out first and I swear, I could of fainted. I’ve admired this lady and her work ethic for so long and to see her, right there, in front of me. Literally, arms length away. Wow. I could feel that inner 14 year old fangirl in me about to make an appearance. The show had the most perfect soundtrack. Hip hop/RnB to strut your stuff too. I was so tempted to join in, not sure if they would like that though. I was stood with water in my eyes a few times, just so beyond grateful to be there. My dream coming true before my eyes

Gigi and Bella Hadid – ahhhhh!!!

Jourdan Dunn, Hayley Baldwin, Georgia May Jagger, Joan Smalls and a smiling Bella

When the fashion show had finished, there was a legit circus act happening. People on a trapeze and swinging from hoops, climbing big pieces of material, just wow. Whilst that was all happening, the stage was getting set for the one and only The Chainsmokers. They were performing at the afterparty. YES! I’ve loved these guys for a long time, just a cherry on top of the cake. Whilst standing watching The Chainsmokers (wow amazing live!) we were handed mini doughnuts. This show was the most incredible, amazing, overwhelming event I have ever, ever been to. 

Sophie and I stood watching the show for a little while before taking a wonder round. I didn’t want to mooch before the show, as I didn’t want to lose what incredible space we had. We went into the photobooth and got the biggest poster, with the Tommy London writing over the top as a take away gift for being there. We posed with microphones and a star tamborine. Just like Gigi does in the promo running up to the event. I was living the dream. 

Even now, 16 hours after coming home from the event I am still on a buzz. I cannot believe I was given this opportunity. I cannot believe I saw Gigi Hadid and Bella Hadid with all their model friends. I always catch up on these guys, when they walk catwalk shows. Then, they were right in front of me. I cannot believe I got to attend such an incredible, well put on and fun event at London Fashion Week.

I hope in the future I can attend more London Fashion Week events, they are so fun. And, thank you, once again Yanin, for making my dream come true. 

 

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Hair journey – dark brown to blonde

I did it. I’ve been wanting to do it properly for a few years now. I have been platinum blonde before and I adored it. There’s something about having a complete contrast hair colour to your natural hair colour that makes you feel SASSY. I feel so much more confident blonde, I don’t know what it is. Maybe it’s because I have such pale skin that the dark brown washed me out and blonde doesn’t? I’m not sure. Of course going from dark brown to blonde would have its consequences as it has damaged my hair – a lot. I’m no professional with hair dye and dying hair and maybe some people will call me stupid for doing it, but why not? My theory is, if it goes wrong… there’s always a darker colour. That may not be the best thing to think but, its the truth.

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I went for a treatment before I dyed my hair. As you would know I have a compulsive repetitive mental health disorder called Trichotillomania (Trich). I know right, a mouthful. I have wrote about it before a couple of times but here are some links from my blog if you haven’t yet seen them. The treatment I got is called Olaplex. The treatment thats done is in two parts. Part one was left on for ten minutes before applying part two. It repairs the bonds within your hair, which is perfect for someone who breaks and snaps off hair. The hairdresser said to me I could keep it on for as long as I like for a better result, but no less than half an hour. I ended up keeping it on my hair for two hours and a bit and it made my hair feel brand new. In the past, I have dyed and dyed my hair, all different colours which involves bleaching it many times. My hair at one point stuck upwards and stayed there. I also cannot remember when my hair actually moved or swayed in the wind. After the Olaplex treatment it felt like it had quite literally been reborn. My hair moved when I turned my head and just felt so light and refreshed. I honestly, 100%, cannot wait to rebook in after pay day. So worth the money.

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The next day, after my treatment, I began the bleaching process. All hairdressers will cringe at this and if they could see me will probably slap my hand for the amount of times I have dyed my hair in the last seven days. I think all in all I have used around four bleaches, four ash blondes, a baby blonde, a toner and numerous purple shampoo baths. CRAZY. It took me six months from the first time I dyed my hair blonde from red and only a week this time. It’s still brassy but, as I’m sure you’ll all be happy to know, I will be giving it a rest from dyes for a while. Purple shampoo and coconut oil is quite literally my best friend right now. I would advise, however, that if you want to go blonde from dark brown to go to your hairdressers. I probably ended up spending the same money on hair dyes myself that I would spend at the hairdressers getting it professionally done. If you have Trich and pull from your hair, you’ll know hairdressers are scary places and I try, personally to stay away from them as much as I can.

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I really absolutely feel so much better being blonde. I feel so much happier, so much confident. During the process of bleaching I have destroyed my hair. I’ve made it coarse, I’ve made it broken and all of these are things that trigger Trich. There have been times recently where I’ve felt anxious and that is a trigger for Trich. Having blonde hair and dark bedding/furniture or even wearing dark clothes, you can see it more and it makes you feel so rubbish. Although there is still that voice inside you that wants you to keep pulling and searching. No matter if I have a deep treatment on to repair my hair there is still that voice. I refuse to let Trich make me dye my hair back brown because it’s the easier way out. I’m ready for this fight and it won’t beat me. It can sometimes get me when I don’t want it to but it won’t beat me. That’s my promise.

(Thank you JJ for the pics, and support always. Always my B!)

Here are my three top blonde hair care products:

Purple shampoo

Toner

Bleach

If anyone has dyed their hair blonde and have any recommendations for deep treatments for home, then please let me know.

Trichy Days and Massive Goals

The blog for today has been inspired by the amount of support I’ve received from people of the inter-webs and people who I know. I’m so overwhelmed from the messages I receive when I post Trich blogs.

When I wrote my first ever Trich post I was so nervous. It was my little secret, something which although it destroys me and makes me emotional as well as angry, it was one thing the world didn’t know about me. Of course if people had seen me they would have noticed the 100 million times which my arm reaches my hair to grab the strands and snap off, but they may not necessary know the term for it. Many people thought it was a bad habit and something I would snap out of and just stop. Through my blog I hope I have given people who don’t know what it is like an insight into how awful and compulsive this mental health illness is. I hope I have given someone who does have it the feeling that they’re not alone in this.

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SAM_0177After releasing my little secret into the world I felt a sense of relief. I thought, well.. at least now people will not question and hopefully won’t find it weird if they catch me pulling or searching my hair. The response from them have been amazing and so many people have contacted me saying things such as they didn’t know it existed and that they may have the same condition but not know about it. That is all I’ve ever wanted from these blogs, to raise awareness as well as letting people know that if they have the same condition that they are not ‘weird’ and they are not alone.

There are days where it is an absolute struggle to get yourself out of the state of you want to pull. It is hard to pull yourself up out of bed and face the world. There are days where you just don’t want to face anyone, you don’t want the world to ask you questions such as “Can you leave your hair alone for a minute?” “Doesn’t it hurt when you consistently pull all the time?” I have days like these, we all have days like these where we don’t want to face everyone but, if you put on something that makes you sassy and you take care of you, you will feel so much better.

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My five top tips for helping me deal with Trich and not getting out of bed which I have used lately are:

Once you do get out of bed, make it. Make your bed straight away. It helps me stop getting back in the covers and stay out.

Do some TLC. Put on a face mask. Put some extra make up on if you want or don’t wear make up at all. Put your fav sassy lipstick on. Wear your favourite clothes or just stay in your PJs. Do what you want but make sure it’s TLC.

BAKE CAKES. I did this the other day and this was also the best thing I’ve done in a while. What’s better than making food, waiting for it to cook then cool, decorate them THEN EAT THEM.

Take a walk. Even if its round the block or down the road. If you’re not feeling up to that open the window. Something about fresh air that makes you feel better.

Read your fav book and put on your fav music and turn it up LOUD. Dance around your room with your hair brush as a microphone or sit and have a cuppa tea with a book. Hell why not do both at the same time.

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This day of taking the photos (that were taken by my fabulous friend Sarah, find her blog here.. Didn’t she do such a fabulous job! Can’t wait to shoot with her again, thanks gal!) was such a success. I am so proud of myself for going out, with my hair down and not for once lifting my hand up to pull it. I can’t even tell you guys enough how much strength it took for me to do that. I do it both in the ‘I know I’m pulling I wish I could stop phase’ and ‘I’m watching TV, I’m out with friends I will automatically pull and not realise’ I was really aware the whole time of making myself, basically forcing myself not to pull. It was such a success as well because I had straightened my hair and I’m not sure if anyone else’s hair is the same as mine but when it’s had heat on it becomes coarse. Which is a massive massive trigger for me which starts me pulling. I knew there would be hairs like that and I didn’t even give Trich the time or the day. I can’t say the same for when I got home and watching TV because I caught myself doing it, but that was a massive, massive step for me. Massive. Let’s celebrate together!

Jacket – Zara sale (similar here)

Culottes – Zara sale (similar here)

Top – New Look (similar here)

Shoes – Primark (similar here)

 

Digital Illustrations – What I Use

The degree which I study, if you don’t know, is fashion graphics. In September it will be the final stretch of the degree and I’ll be heading into my third and final year – scary. I still remember my very first day at uni trying to figure out how to get there from my halls – as if I didn’t know the way.

I also remember my first day of opening up Illustrator in a technical lesson and absolutely hating it. I had come from a creative media course at college and only ever used Photoshop and Indesign. Everything, in the beginning, on Illustrator was so complicated compared to the other programs. I bet the first time I opened up Photoshop I felt the same, hmm. I used to dread every lesson, for the lecturer to say ‘today we will be using Illustrator’ – my worst nightmare. The more I went to the lessons however, the more I got used to it, and before I knew it I had excitement for the lessons. The whole process of learning something new was exciting me to the point I used my free time to expand my skills in learning how to use Illustrator more.

(It’s crazy to think that this was the first ever drawing I did and was created on Photoshop – how? Using the pen tool on there and my latest drawing which IM SO PROUD OF on Illustrator using the paintbrush tool)

The more I developed with actually drawing illustrations on Illustrator the more my poor mouse pad on my laptop got worn and used until it quite literally didn’t work anymore. It was so good on my behalf, that it happened near Christmas because I was able to ask for a Wacom tablet as a gift. I was so lucky to get the Intuos small (I’ve looked everywhere online to find it to link and I can’t waahhh). I wanted to develop my illustrations more and I knew this would be an investment to getting me to do them more and to develop.

At first it was a weird but cool experience. I really, really enjoyed experimenting. It is literally like drawing on paper but on your screen with the advantages to Illustrator. After just a few uses I found it so so much easier to draw with. Once you get over the whole co-ordination of the watching the screen to drawing – you’ve got it! I’ve been told by numerous people that the best way to use Illustrator to draw is by using the pen tool, but I find it so much easier using the paintbrush. There are a whole range of different paint brushes on Illustrator which I have only recently discovered because I’m still only learning, which are incredible. Using the paintbrush tool also helps get my style across a lot better as well. My Wacom tablet has helped me so much in progressing and I genuinely don’t think I could ever do illustrations again without it.

Here’s a trip down memory lane of a few of my illustrations I’ve done since starting uni. This is crazzzzy to see how they’ve come along…

And finally here is a video of me illustrating in action…

I hope you all enjoyed this post and if you’d like more creative posts like these let me know.

 

 

#HairArmour

If you had spoken to me around a month ago, the thought of wearing a hair wrap/head scarf would of made me cringe and I would of thought – no. Just no. A really really good friend of mine mentioned to me the other week that maybe hair wraps/head scarfs would benefit me a lot, in the way they cover up a lot of hair to stop me pulling. Especially when I’ve got stressful events coming up, which I find myself pulling my hair out a lot more.

I researched on Pinterest different headscarf styles which I could try out and then I began to look for headscarves. I was still a bit like – oooh urrrmmm whilst shopping but if I didn’t like them I could always just not wear them.

As soon as I got home I instantly was watching Youtube videos about how to tie headscarves in cool stylish ways. I have enjoyed trying different styles and already buying different styles of headscarf, big ones, thin ones and headbands. I thought originally I’d be loving the headbands more but I actually prefer the headscarfs. You can style them in more versatile ways to headbands.

Today I wore my hair down the whole day with a headband and not only does it cover the bald bits at the side but it also stops me pulling from the root at the sides. I can still pull off the ends and snap the split ends off but it’s a lot more difficult when your hair is up.

I’m looking forward to finding new ones in my travels whilst shopping and I can’t wait to try new different styles. If you know any places I can get any from please let me know! Also if you’d like to see different ways I style them and how I do it in a video let me know!

I see this all in the road to recovery away from Trichotillomania. I will beat you. Hair armour is here to help!

Moving and coping.

Today is the day. The day I move into a new house down university. I was meant to move in a week ago today but due to money I couldn’t go down for Friday so said I would go down Monday.

Sunday evening I had a bad nights sleep. I only had three hours due to major major overthinking. It was so so bad. I just kept thinking of all the possible things that could go wrong whilst moving house. Right from no one being in first to silly things, but big things for me, will my door shut and will I be able to open it again.

There are so many things going through my head right now, so m a n y. I have thoughts such as how is the bathroom door going to be? Will I be able to lock it then open it again? What if my bedroom door is one that jams and I can’t open it ever again? There’s also things like what if my next door neighbours are loud and I can’t sleep when I have work the next morning. These are genuine thoughts running through my head and I seriously wish they would leave so I can just get on with things, as normal.

I do have ways to try and drown out these thoughts however, such as turning up music so I can’t hear them anymore. I do this a lot, if and where I can. I can’t do it whilst I’m at work but… if I’m in the street 9/10 i’ll have headphones on me which I will instantly plug in and use. If I’m at home I will use my speakers and turn up the music louder, just so I’m singing along to something and not thinking about things, over and over and over.

Another thing I will do if I’m home if it’s night time and not always practical to blast music the loudest it’ll go is, I will turn on my fav movie. I don’t watch a lot of films and TV shows as I’m one of those who get easily bored and very quickly. Films such as The Devil Wears Prada, Confessions of a Shopaholic or Mean Girls are films that can be put on without actually thinking about what I’m watching – bonus.

I have also been trying to control Trich, because that is playing up MEGA time. I keep catching myself thinking GOD WILL YOU STOP. It’s got to the point where my arm aches. It’s so sore for being up pulling on my hair. I’ve been using my good old friend the stress ball. I might even give them names I use them a lot. I’ve also had to tie my hair into loads of different bunches so that I don’t pull, they’re harder to pull in a pony tail. I’ve also wet my hair a lot as well as my fingers can’t seem to feel the bad bits like that. It was pay day today so I decided to buy some head wraps, you know try it out and see if it helps. To my surprise they aren’t on the usual sites that I buy clothing/accessories from. I am excited to receive them and will defo report how I get on when I get them through the post.

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(I illustrated this the other afternoon, with millions of dots. Copyright applies)

I have however tried to vlog this week (only two days – whoops) but this week has been a crazy one and so many things have happened and changed.

Hopefully by the next time I post I’ll be all settled in the new house and there won’t be anything to worry about – who knows?

 

June Round Up

We’ve reached the end of June already, how?? I could swear that the days are going faster, I sound like I’m past my age but.. its the truth! I set a bunch of goals to complete for the end of the month. These were:

  • Cut out additional sugars. I legit think I am addicted to sugar. I really really need to stop asap for my own health. It is becoming not ok and I’m well aware of it.
  • Go at least one day pull free. Just one day. This hasn’t happened in a while because I’ve been stressed and anxious about everything thats going on with the internship, getting something to pass the 100 hours and you know, general life stresses. I’ll be sure to update you all on my social media if this does happen, however – eek.
  • Get in contact with companies which I 100% want to get work experience with. Not just applying through panic and getting an internship I really don’t like again. That was not fun. I may do a blogpost on this soon about my experience with this internship and how to look for one which you love, if you’d be interested. Let me know.
  • Blog more. I’ve just recently started to share my experiences with mental health condition called Trichotillomania and the response/support I’ve received from it has been incredible. My blog posts about MH have been the ones which have been viewed/read the most and that makes me extremely happy and proud.
  • Get home and spend more time with my family. I’ve been home not even a week this year with university and I miss them home comforts so much. It is summer now and although I have to work overtime to pay the bills I must find some time just to take a break and re-coup at home. This also goes aside seeing my friends more often. I need to do this, need need need.

The additional sugars goal was completed in a week, I went home then ate sugar like it was the best thing ever and haven’t stopped since, sigh. 

I haven’t gone a day pull free all month and to be honest that makes me angry. Theres been 30 days this month and not one day did I stop pulling. It has however been a stressful month with getting results from uni, working loads and moving house. I hope one of these months to come I’ll be able to say at least one day I didn’t pull.

I have been in contact with companies I want to do internships and been offered some but with my financial state right now I couldn’t do it. I need to earn enough money for rent and bills first then go from there. It’s a hard cycle.

I’ve blogged at least once a week this month, sometimes maybe twice. That is an incredible achievement for me. I can’t wait to share some more fun times as well as more posts about Mental Health. I really enjoy writing about it knowing that people don’t feel alone anymore and raising awareness.

Finally, as I write this post I’m actually sat at home. With around 50 boxes of my own stuff surrounding me after moving out in Southampton earlier this week ready to sort out and move back down Monday for final year of uni in a different, much nicer house. I’m excited and quite nervous for last year. Lets hope I do myself proud.

Hope you all have a fab July and I shall see you all next month for more blogposts! Lets do this!