Monday, 30 September 2013

My uni room

(excuse the bad quality image, the only camera I have now is a digital one, rather than my mum's DSLR I used to use!) 

I've been very busy the past two weeks, settling in, taking part in freshers week (and the FRESHERS FAIR ehehe), meeting new people, getting to know my new flatmates, learning how to use washing machines, doing my food shopping, all that jazz. Today I am starting my course - really scary... I am doing fashion and textiles, and since it is an art degree I am so so scared about expectations, and what other people will think / judge about me and my work... what if I am not good enough?!

But the most important thing is that I try and relax, forget about it, and move on. The whole point of this four year experience is to learn new skills, and if I learn one new thing today then I will have made progress in keeping to that.

So without further adieu, here is my new room! It would probably be slightly more interesting if I had some pictures of my old room, but believe me when I say this: it is SO much bigger. I genuinely used to stay in a room that used to be a cupboard. But not one under the stairs kind, like Harry Potter. And in addition, I have a freakin' ENSUITE. How great is that?! No need to share with my flatmates, and I have all the room in the world (ok two shelves) to hold all my skincare crap. Woop!

Notice my fabulous X Files and GOT posters....



My very confusing timetable is in pride of place on the wall.


My collection of fashion-y books I brought with me, and my pinboard which I am very pleased with.




As my new term and new life begins, so will posting on the blog begin again! 

Would you like some posts on what I am doing at university, how I am organising myself?
Or would you prefer more general posts on fashion... 

Any ideas on what you would like to see would be great! 

Coming up this week is...
  • How to score a virtual internship
  • A little post on my freshers week (and how I've found settling in)
  • A Babylips review (I don't even care that there are loads, I have opinions! :p)
  • OUTFIT POST! I scored some great vintage finds the day before I left to Aberdeen, at a student vintage fair in Edinburgh. I'm in love with the bargain purchases I got and I wanna show 'em off!

Much love to ya, and stay cool <3

Jean

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Scalloped circle again from the awesome Pugly Pixel!

Thursday, 12 September 2013

My skincare routine


I am completely obsessed with skincare and everything to do with it - I love reading posts from others about their best beauty finds or their skincare routine, and can happily spend ages wandering in my local Boots ogling their skincare aisle. It's a bit weird, but everyone has their obsessions!

You'll see a LOT of Simple, but it's mainly because I absolutely adore their range and after using Simple Sense, bought a couple new products to use weekly on my skin to keep it in tip topperoo shape.


Daily

For me, Simple is really kind to my skin and I easily use the Kind to Skin cleanser and light moisturiser every morning and night. I use the Simple Kind to Skin toner and the eye creams; balance Me Wonder Eye Cream and Good Things Bright Eyes Eye Cream at night, and since using a combination of the two eye creams it's really helped to improve my dark under eyes.

I can't imagine ever not using the three Simple products for my Cleanse, Tone and Moisturise steps, they have always worked for me and kept my skin nice and fresh!


Weekly

What I found just using cleanser, toner and moisturiser daily was that my skin was (generally) clear and alright, it really wasn't glowing, radiant, healthy. This was probably due to a combination of my eating habits (which are improved now, yay!) and that I did not exfoliate. After using really cool exfoliating gloves with the Kind to Skin Smoothing Facial Scrub, my skin instantly feels absolutely gorgeous. What is even better is that it works far better than the pore strips to unclog my pores.

I bought the Good Things 5 Minute Facial Face Mask in Brighton on holiday with my friends, and having used it a couple times I have found it to be very good at giving my skin a little radiance. 

My Nivea Visage Young - Bye Bye Spot cream is a bittersweet product. Although the bitterness has nothing to do with the products ability to work! I use it all over my face as a moisturiser whenever I feel a spot coming through, and I think it works great. The bitterness only exists because the Nivea Visage Young range existed for a short period of time in the UK, and I actually bought this product whilst on a school trip to Belgium! I can only hope I will one day find this product again, as I love it.

I also use T-Zone and Freederm spot treatments if I have a really bad breakout, and find those work really well on bringing the redness down. 

Ciao ciao
Jean
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What is your skincare routine like? And have you had experience with any of these products before? Let me know! :)

Sunday, 8 September 2013

Blog post frequency: Quality vs Quantity


I know, I know... I'm a bit of a failure, I only got 5 days in to the Blog Your Socks Off September challenge before I'm calling it quits! It's mainly because I found myself staying up ridiculously late into the night making headers for my posts or trying to think of a wittier way of saying "I LOVE THIS", and I thought to myself... "I don't need to put myself through this!"

Blog Your Socks Off September has helped me realise that my blogging rhythm was not suited to daily posting... I was enjoying blogging much more when I was posting around 2 - 4 times a week, with no pressure! That's not to say the challenge is bad, not at all! It is just that daily posting does not suit me, my blog and the style of my blog.

I discovered that less frequent post resulted in my posts being of a better quality, so the age old question beckons then;

Is it better to strive for quality or quantity?


Quality

  • The advantages of blogging only quality posts is that you will be fully (or mainly) satisfied with your blog - you know your blog posts are of the highest and best quality that you can produce!
  • In addition, your readers will think that too, and may be more responsive in terms of views, comments and shares. 
  • Quality blogging takes up a LOT of time - time that could be spent doing double the amount of posts, and building an archive. 

Quantity

  • With a larger amount of posts, there are more opportunities for people to come across your blog, as you are able to post your blog posts more often on Twitter and Facebook.
  • With more posts means a hindrance in quality, and the page views will likely not translate into returning visitors or readers.

I think that quality and quantity of blog posting can be considered to be on two sides of the same coin, and means that it is important to focus on BOTH, and find a balance.

Every blogger will have, through trial and error, discovered their particular rhythm or posting frequency, whether it be through daily posting, a few posts a week or once a week on a particular day.


Finding your rhythm

Deciding on the right posting frequency is important, since if you find the right pattern you are less likely to encounter the woeful "bloggers block" and most importantly not lose enthusiasm or motivation to blog!

I should have realised that when I was putting up posts 2 - 3 times a week in my first few months was the right rhythm for me, as I continually found things to post about and felt enthusiastic to write about them. 

Rapidly switching to daily posting was detrimental to not only my enthusiasm for blogging but also my ability to find enjoyment in the things I was writing about. Writing a post at stupid o'clock probably did not help though, and my time management was a shambles too! But that is a whole different blog post, my friend...!

I hope you guys found this post helpful

What is your posting frequency right now, and do you feel happy with your quality and quantity balance?

Sources: Thanks to this page for way more pros and cons of posting frequency that I could think of! 

Thursday, 5 September 2013

Why I love tumblr #1




The Aristocats {scenery} - Original post: loserslurgy.tumblr.com


Awesome heart doily clipart from Good Night Little Spoon!

Wednesday, 4 September 2013

The secrets to blogging: my experiences


Blogging as a way of expressing opinions, news, tips and more has been around pretty much since the Internet came about, and the reign of websites like LiveJournal made sure that in the early 00's that blogging was here to stay. Now, with Wordpress and Blogger and Tumblr, and fashion bloggers sitting front row at runway shows, it has lead the way for bloggers able to make their LIVING doing something that so many people started doing just for fun - amazing, huh?

It occurred to me today that, even though this blog is very, very new, that through my escapades with my previous blogs, that I seem to have finally found the secret to "successful" blogging. And my way of defining "successful" is that a) I am writing what I like to write about, b) I am getting visitors and readers and c) I have made friends and they are actually conversing with me on the blog - woah!

Okay, so obviously this blog is incredibly new, there isn't that many readers or comments, and I haven't even hit double digits in posts yet... but - what is stop me from sharing what I have learned so far from blogging, and my other experiences in blogging?


Think about what you enjoy. Write about that!

Back in early 2010, I began a book blog called Magic Bean Review. I had read book blogs for a bit and really liked the look of being able to pass on enjoyment of reading books to others. I was blogging at Magic Bean Review regularly for about a year and a half when I discovered that, although I absolutely love reading, that I did not enjoy blogging about reading, or writing reviews of books. Hence, I gave up with the blog.

Lesson? Write about what you enjoy. I wholeheartedly believe that if you choose to blog about things you truly, truly, love, then you will probably find a way to continue blogging for a long time.

Find blogs, read them.

There were several occasions when I began a blog and was committed fully for a few weeks, and then the commitment tapered off when I realised no one was listening. (aww)

Lesson? Go find blogs that post similar things you are going to post, and go find blogs that are the opposite of what you post because sometimes you need outside inspiration. Email, comment, tweet! Effy over at Effy Talks Life wrote a great post on effectively using Twitter to get your blog out there, and included the timings of the different blogger chats.

But the most important secret? Don't get hung up.

Did that post you spent ages writing and taking photos for not get as many hits and comments, or didn't start a conversation like you thought it would?

Forget about it.

Tweet the post a few times and then move on to another quality post. So long as you're interacting with other bloggers in the community and continually putting out content that you yourself would read on other blogs (or is something you are passionate about), your posts will be noticed.


For a long time I thought the secrets to blogging were just that, secret. But they are not. The secrets are posted by others all the time, their tips on blogging, their tips on being noticed. I hope you enjoyed my perspective of blogging and something here was useful for you!

Ciao
Jean
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Tuesday, 3 September 2013

Game of Thrones Fashion Appreciation

Game of Thrones is by far one of my favourite book series and TV series, pretty much of all time. It comes very, very close to The X Files in terms of enjoyment! As a fashion student, the television series is an absolutely wonder to look at, so I thought a post that showcased both fashion worn in the programme, and runway fashion that really gives off the elegance and artistry that the books describe and the TV show brings to life...




The absolutely amazing work of Michele Carragher is adorned on many of Cersei's beautiful dresses, and in addition, Sansa's wedding dress. 

What I find really interesting is that there is so much modern runway fashion that can be linked to Game of Thrones in some way, or be seen as inspired by the garments worn by the affluent King's Landing folk. 

Georges Hobeika, image courtesy of A Game of Clothes
With the lovely embroidery on the sleeves and shaping of the corset along with the cascading silk, it literally screams "Sansa Stark".

Top left, Valentino. Images from A Game of Clothes
Sansa Stark, member of one of the protagonist families, tended to wear whilst in Winterfell pastels and cool colours in loose forms, but since being in Kings Landing (where the money lies!) has been wearing more bulky clothing, nearly kimono-esque in shape - which I deem quite strange as compared to Winterfell where it is cold, you'd think it would be the opposite.

Some of my favourite images EVER are of the close-up views of the intricate embroidery work by Carragher, and my only dream is to be able to work with fabric and beads even a tenth of Michele Carragher's talent!

Take care,

Jean
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Monday, 2 September 2013

Blog Your Socks Off September

(I'M A SUCKER FOR CLIPART I DON'T EVEN CARE)

So, it is technically 23:56 right here in Scotland, so I guess that still counts for my 2nd of September post...? Whoops! Blog Your Socks Off September (or more commonly known as  #blogyoursocksoffseptember on Twitter!) is a challenge set up by Jess over at Lovely Jubbly, in which you must try and post every single day in September!

As my blog is relatively new, I thought this would be the perfect challenge to really get to know my style of content and mix it up with new posts.

What is coming up over the next week?
  • Game of Thrones fashion
  • My skincare routine
  • Sewing tips
  • What I've been sewing
  • Sketchbook fun!
  • and, obviously, way more!
I have planned what I am doing every day of September (bar one, which for the life of me I can't think of) but if you want to request something or see more of a type of post, comment!

CIAO,

Jean
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Jotter clipart and text clipping mask (a cute lamb under a cherry tree) from Just Something I Made and doily from Pugly Pixel


Sunday, 1 September 2013

Liebster Award


I am absolutely so touched to have received the Liebster Award from two lovely ladies, Gill at My Miss Dior Fashion and Katie over at Far From Uniform! Thank you very much, and it is such a nice feeling to have been recognised by fellow bloggers already when I have not been blogging for particularly long!

Many of you will have come across the chain award before, but for those who have not, it is just a little way for bloggers with under 200 followers to pass on the love to others with under 200 followers! You pass on 11 questions to 11 bloggers you have chosen, and answer the 11 questions you were given! Since I received it twice I mixed up the questions I got from Gill and Katie.

1. What is your favourite drugstore makeup brand and why?

To be honest, the majority of my makeup would be categorised under "drugstore", but solely because of the lovely Kate Moss lipstick, Rimmel!

2. How did you come up with your blog name?

My blog name is a play on words which one of my friends came up with a few years ago, and since I've been using versions of it for usernames and such! It is pronounced exactly the same as the vegetable aubergine (or eggplant to those in the USA), but is my name - "Jean", and part of my last name, "Ober".

3. If you could go anywhere in the world, where would you go and why?

Japan! I've been in love with the place for ages now and I just really want to go there at least once in my life. I have a chance of going in 2015, but it's a very small chance, and at a cost!

4. If you could only pick one make up product to use which would it be?

Concealer. Usually it is the only product I use anyway, but you gotta hide 'em dark circles somehow!

5. If you could have any hair colour and pull it off what would you pick?

Probably lilac! I dyed the ends lilac as I just won't ever be that rebellious to go all over, and it wouldn't suit me, so just dip-dyeing is the way to go.

6. What's your biggest dream?

To be able to find a well-paid job doing what I love! It's a dream alright... sigh.

7. If you would win a £1000, what would you do with it?

Put it towards my university fund - very boring I know, but in truth that is what would happen to it.

8. The thing I like the most about blogging is ...

The community! Already have talked so much with awesome people about things we like and blogging, and it's just really, really nice.

9. A quote that you live by?

"If you spent less time bitching about your life - you'd possibly enjoy it more"

10. If you could only shop at one store from now on, where and why?

Probably New Look as it would mean I wouldn't become bankrupt!

11. Who is your style icon?

Probably both Alexa Chung and Emma Watson.

Not only are you meant to answer questions set for you, but you post 11 facts about yourself, but I'm not going to bother with that as the questions give you enough facts for one post, I think! :0

My 11 Questions

1. What is your ultimate blogging tip?
2. If you were invisible for a day, what would you do?
3. What song would you recommend to people in order to understand and get to know you better [by listening to it]?
4. What book quote do you try and live by?
5. What is your number one favourite TV programme?
6. What is your favourite hobby/interest?
7. If you won the lottery, who would you tell/not tell?
8. What is your favourite word?
9. If you had the chance to do a trolley dash in a shop, which one would it be, and what would you try and definitely get?
10. What is the meaning behind your blog name?
11. If you had the chance to eat dinner with a famous figure of your choice, dead or alive, who would it be?

I pass the award on to...

Holly at A Daydreamers Thoughts
Andrea at Fancy Fashion Castle
Justine at Chioma C.
Sarah at Creativity Avenue
Harri at Cupcake Crafty
Milly at Miyyi
Jessie at Painting The Ocean
Sally at Sally Tangle


If you don't really want to post about the Liebster Award specifically, which I completely understand and chain posts aren't always everyones bag (and I debated whether to post specifically about it too!) then I challenge you to answer a few of the questions above, share a little more about yourself, in a similar way that you normally post about!

Take care,

Jean
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AIR MAIL ENVELOPE CLIPART from Just Something I Made, and scalloped circle from a pack at Pugly Pixel.