Shiny Thoughts - 2/111 - ShinyThoughts | Colourful Fashion Lifestyle Blog | London UK Shiny Thoughts - 2/111 - ShinyThoughts | Colourful Fashion Lifestyle Blog | London UK

#TheBloggersMarket is Back!

#TheBloggersMarket 2 invite


You CAN Sit With Us!

Have you heard that #TheBloggersMarket is back? oh yes! It’s bigger and better than before and we just can’t wait to open the doors to your smiling faces! If you’ve not heard about it before, it’s essentially 6 hours of shopping the wardrobes and lives of us 5 fashion lifestyle bloggers; Carrie, Dunya, Kristabel, Olivia and I. There are also other fun things to do and it’s a great excuse to meet up with your galpals, come say hi and hang out! I’ll be selling loads of different bits and bobs from ASOS to Antipodium with sizes from 8-12 and shoe sizes 7 & 8 but if you fall out of that bracket, there are plenty of other sizes from the other girls!

2 Weeks to go!

So what’s new since our first January edition? Well, there’s no doubt that it was amazing if we do say so ourselves (we couldn’t believe that there were blog posts written about it before we even got home!) but this time we tweaked things a little. We’ll be running a ‘Tweet to Eat’ shop full of tasty treats from Krispy Kreme (there’s talk of being able to win a years worth of doughnuts too) and sustenance from Yo!Sushi so you can get your sugar levels back up after rifling through the rails. Grab a bottle of Appletiser (my absolute fave), and like take a look around our stalls, try things on and then pay at the respective Bloggers’ stand. Easy!

Once you’ve shopped, drop in to get your portrait illustrated by Emma Block to mark the day and get your make up touched up by Benefit Cosmetics. Listen to the gorgeous sounds of tipped-to-be-big new singer Shannon Wardrop and you’ll be set for a perfect Saturday!

BTW, if you’re feeling peckish, The Hoxton Hotel‘s own restaurant Hubbard and Bell is excellent or pop downstairs to Chicken Shop. Otherwise, you’re just a short walk to Soho or Covent Garden. If you’re looking for a cashpoint, there’s one at Sainsbury’s, 100m before you get to the Hotel. Please not that this year, the space we’re in is a little smaller so we do apologise in advance if you will need to queue a little at the door.

Take a look at the Facebook page for all the details and to tell us you’re coming and remember the main point, we’ll be at The Hoxton Holborn hotel, not Shoreditch!

It’s going to be a fun day. See you there in 2 weeks time!



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An Evening on Osea

bright orange dress, yellow bag and green heels outside dinner party

osea island garden blue sky

next orange sleeveless dress

bright blue sea and single white sailing boat

bright orange embellished dress, turquoise heels and yellow cross body bag next

osea island shells and sea living room in the captains house


48 Hours of Bliss

If you read my last post you will have seen that some of my fave blogging gals and I went off on a Jolly to the beautiful secret island of Osea off the Essex Coast. As promised, this time I’m showing you a little more of the amazing Captains House where we all stayed! Think of it as a boarding school for Bloggers where we all chatted together about everything from all the nuances of Blogging to exercise routines and some serious over-sharing once we got into our Next PJs!

After a morning of exploring we tucked into afternoon tea and chats on the terrace. It was just the most wonderful place to hang out with such successful and hard working ladies. All the girls were so supportive, insightful and inspiring that we basically decided we were staying to form our own Blogging house. Bye!

Once the evening came it was time to get on our gladrags and settle down to a delicious meal but it wasn’t long before we were rudely interrupted by a crazed Policeman running through the room! Don’t worry, it was only a case of murder mystery and despite the wine and the good food distracting us, we didn’t do too badly at working our whodunit! A few glasses later and we all snuggled up on the sofas, put on some sassy seventies tunes and gossiped until we could no longer. Right. I’m staying!



scones on gingham tablecloth english next colourful night out outfit

afternoon tea served on a tiered cake stand

Osea Island captains house life rings party holiday home

red embroidered tapestry sofa and bookshelves

bright yellow flowers

osea island captains house living room

beef wellington dinner

seaside theme table decoration lanterns shells dinner


What I Wore in the Evening on Osea:

Dress / Bag / Heels – All Next

Thanks so much to Next for sending us away!


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Osea Island

seventies style outfit with a crochet top and printed shorts by next

osea island view over the beach and sea

going rowing nautical themed

Dr Pepper wooden crates flowers

next tribal print shorts and rose gold watch

blogger girls on a walk through the country

white little hut on osea island

life ring fun

white bicycles for hire on osea island

crochet top and wooden necklace hippie style

fishing themed outfit knitted top and fringe bag

drifters bright colourful painted mural on osea island

black fringe suede sandals



Heard of Osea Island? Nope me neither until last month when Next whisked a bunch of blogging gals away for a fantastic little jaunt on an isle off the Essex coast. It turns out that it’s quite the place for celebs, not that we saw any, but with a recording studio and a handful of private houses (set up conveniently well for parties) it’s not surprising that you might see Tiny Tempah flying in.

When not pretending we were famous we were exploring the island, doing impromptu yoga sessions in the morning and cooking up feasts. The lovely ladies at Spook Cooking hopped over the causeway at low tide to teach us how to whip up a quick and easy lunch made up of ceviche (who knew it was quite so easy?!), sweet potato fries (I’ve made these since and they’re great!), salads a-plenty and some seriously good healthy deserts.

Of course, we all wore our Next garbs whilst on our trip! I loved how we all picked clothes in similar colours. It made us look like a right girl tribe! More on the house we stayed in in my next post.



spook catering cookery classes girls

cooking with spook catering

spook cookery classes box of recipe cards

mixing advocado in a teacup

cooking with spook catering

lucy and kim asparagus dish spook

fresh palma ham, peach and cheddar salad

blogger friends hanging out at beach house wearing next summer holiday outfits


What I Wore on Osea Island:

Top / Shorts / Bag / Sandals / Necklace / Sunglasses

All Next


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La Corrèze: for chilling out

local strawberries brive la gaillard market


The Relaxed Side of France

If your list of holiday destination priorities are food, relaxing and a hint of luxury not too far from home then the Corrèze region of France is there waving it’s arms around at ‘cha! Last month I compiled a pretty hefty guide for fun and adventurous things to do in la Corrèze including paragliding, staying in a treehouse and discovering what is basically a film set for Jurassic World. Let’s just say that there’s lots to do to keep you on your toes!

But after all this activity you’re going to be more than ready to discover the other delights, namely amazing food and wine. Here’s my list of amazing places and tastes to chill out in Corrèze.

fresh radishes brive la gaillard market



Brive Food Market

Once you’ve had a good wander around the beautiful principle town of Brive (see me dressed up like a French girl there!) head straight to the market for lunch and to fill up your bags on local delicacies. We had a great simple lunch at Bistrot Brassens which serves the most massive steak my eyes ever have seen! Finish up with a cherry clafoutis. Don’t forget to spit out the stones!

Now to hit the market. Stock up on fresh fruit and veg, cheese, meats, plants, nuts, sweets and cheese. Did I mention cheese? Don’t miss the long shaped strawberries either, they’re a local delicacy and get their own party – a strawberry festival every summer!

goats cheese brive la gaillard market

vin paillee and mustard in brive la gaillard market

fresh garlic french market brive

cheese stall brive la gaillard market

chips salad and tomatos lunch bistrot brassens brive la gaillard market

traditional cherry clafoutis desert bistrot brassens brive la gaillard market




Research La Corrèze online and you’ll likely get a list of beautiful villages to discover. Uzerche is one such place worth a gander around. Sink into a slice of dozy French life and meander around the old houses, towers and vaulted passageways to see why it’s named ‘the pearl of the Limousin district.’

I got up early and had a walk around on my own in the morning sun. There’s nothing quite like snooping around no-one’s watching! Scroll down to see where to stay in this pretty place.

morning view over uzerche correze france

la palette art gallery uzerche correze france

beautiful church view with roses

view over the town from hotel joyet de maubec uzerche correze france



Hôtel Joyet de Maubec

Make Uzerche your stop-over town and stay at the relatively new Hôtel Joyet de Maubec, a beautifully restored boutique hotel and former boarding school with character and elegance (note the delicious smell of lilies everywhere you go!) If you want a touch of luxury then head here, if only to see those views over the valley of the Vézère river!

If you can’t stay, do at least make a stop at its restaurant, La Treille Muscate for a fine dining menu that changes weekly according to seasonal produce and the perfect wine pairings.

fine dining hotel Joyet de Maubec in correze amuse bouche starter

beautiful renovated traditional hotel joyet de maubec uzerche correze france

hotel joyet de maubec uzerche correze france
pretty village scallop house uzerche correze france

breakfast at hotel joyet de maubec uzerche correze france

breakfast at hotel joyet de maubec uzerche correze france




As a blogger, I love a beautiful village with winding streets, who doesn’t?! Gorgeous villages don’t come much better than Collonges-La-Rouge, named one of the most beautiful villages in France, it’s a definite stop off worth looking around.

Why so red? Well, I’m going to whip out my geography for you again folks! The houses lie on a region of clay soil high in iron which came into contact with oxygen. The more the iron elements rusted, the deeper red colour. Hey, I never thought I’d ever want a rusty house!

Be sure to spot the building with the mermaid in the wall at the village museum. Snoop around the hat shop down the road, check out the holes in the walls of the market square where sticks held prized local wine and see the village oven where villagers made bread. Mainly though, take beautiful instagrams!

pink flowers collonges-la-rouge beautiful village town in correze france
little cottage collonges-la-rouge beautiful village town in correze france

hyacinth flowers in collonges-la-rouge beautiful village town in correze france
palm tree in collonges-la-rouge beautiful village town in correze france

sweetcorn drying in collonges-la-rouge beautiful village town in correze france
beams in walls collonges-la-rouge beautiful village town in correze france

gardens collonges-la-rouge beautiful village town in correze france
turrets and mansard roofs collonges-la-rouge beautiful village town in correze france



Le Vin Paillé

The beady eyed of you may have noticed the beautiful cerise coloured wine bottles in one of my photos in the Brive market and then the white version in the background of our lunch. What you might realise is that the white labeled bottle with the sweet fruity liquor was pretty much a mainstay of our trip, popping at every meal and… breakfast?

Yep, on the second day of our trip, we were tasting it at 10am. All in the name of research of course, after all, it’s not every day that you get to sample wine straight from the hands of the producer. So when Jean Mage, a small-unit Vin Paillé producer invited us along to see the vineyards, vats and explain the process, all concept of time-appropriateness went out the window.

For the vino-heads out there, what makes this wine unique is that the grapes are picked and partially dried traditionally on straw (the French word is ‘paille’.) The sweetness of the grape is concentrated and when pressed produces that delicious flavour. Choose any bottle with the label and it will have been produced traditionally by one of around 20 local farmers like Jean.

vineyard for vin paille in france

wine tasting vin paille in correze vineyard

vineyard award medals for wine making in france

red poppies in francefrench donkey in france


Like the look of La Corrèze? Discover the wild side!


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lovebox festival tassels kimono outfit and orange rucksack

view from above in the air flags lovebox festival 2015

lovebox festival tassels kimono outfit

lovebox festival tassels kimono outfit

embroidered kimono and white dress festival outfit details

lovebox festival vip area korean pork bun and palm plant

lovebox festival tassels kimono outfit

embroidered kimono tassel sleeve festival outfit details

spike silver ear cuff for festival and shaved hair

lovebox festival tassels kimono outfit

kristabel and lucy at lovebox festival



Floaty and Fringed

Oh what to wear to a festival. There’s all the help out there you can get and yet you still haven’t the foggiest as you flick through your rails of workwear and boring basics. I want crochet, crazy prints, fringing and fun damnit, yet somehow my wardrobe’s gotten all ‘sensible’ and last season’s palm prints aren’t looking so hot. Luckily, I managed to pull this vintage embroidered kimono out from my barely touched bikini bag and there I had it – a key party piece to set off the style – phew!

Not that the festival in question was particularly focused on festival fashion. You could easily rock up to Lovebox wearing what else you found in said bikini bag. Just add knicker-style denim shorts. That look isn’t quite for me so I opted for a slightly more traditionally hippy-eque approach which in my opinion went much better with the bunting anyway!

It was great to be able to invite my French cousin along to Lovebox, she’d never been on a Ferris Wheel before so swinging was obviously in order! That and a bit of bobbing about to Flight Facilities, Hot Chip and Little Dragon, oh and a lot of tasty grub. Korean pork buns and Bird burgers? Yes please!


See my other festival outfits! ›


feet on the big wheel lovebox festival 2015

chips and cider at lovebox festival 2015

lovebox festival tassels kimono outfit

churros amigos at lovebox festival and big wheel lights

VIP area at lovebox festival 2015

embroidered kimono and white dress festival outfit details blue stone necklace

sunset flag lovebox festival 2015

main stage night crowd lovebox festival 2015
little dragon on stage performance lovebox festival 2015


What I wore to Lovebox:

Kimono – Vintage / Dress – ASOS / Necklace – Topshop / Sandals – Next / Bag – ASOS (similar) / Belt – ASOS (similar) / Ear cuff – Nelly (similar)

Thanks so much to Zalando  and Clash for the Lovebox tix!


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