Thursday, 28 August 2008

StarDesign @ Stardoll

Remember earlier in the month I said when I had more time I'd tell you about the wonderful design feature at Stardoll? Well here goes...

As I've said, you can buy clothes for your MeDoll at Stardoll in the StarPlaza shop. Stardoll recently added a new feature where you can use shapes and patterns to create your own designs. I don't think anyone at Stardoll could guess just how creative their members would be. I've been amazed by the work of some of the budding designers there.

You start with the screen above and work within the middle section. You can choose 3 base templates and each has 2 pattern designs. You add shapes from the top of the page and can change all the colours using the colour book to the left. You can also rotate items as well as changing their size and making thm transparent. There are 4 fabrics (cotton, knitted, jeans and silk) to use. The images below may help you visualise these instructions.

Add shapes to the base template (here it's a triangle), how it looks on your fabric is to the right of the screen.

Make shapes bigger by moving the needle along the ruler, using the red wheel,
do the same to rotate the shape, but use the green wheel, and look how the white star changes by making it transparent using the yellow wheel.

Now watch how much this design can differ depending on which base template and pattern design you use. I have not altered any of the shapes, sizes etc.

The blue arrow shows the base template (the 2nd option in this case) and the green shows how to change the pattern shape/repetition in one easy click. All options are shown below, some have very different effects whereas others are more subtle.

I usually prefer working with the square base as most of the patterns I make up are 'picture' type images (i.e. Hello kitty, faces etc) and I find it works better when it's a straightforward line repetition. Once you are happy with your pattern, click the 'choose' button and then decide which type of garment you wish to decorate. I usually use the dresses which are $10. You can also change the size of your print by moving the needle along the ruler. You can move your garment around the fabric until you are happy with how it looks. then click the 'sew' button and watch as the sewing machine magically makes your garment (so cute!).
You then have the option to buy or bin it. If you didn't like it, you could click on the fabric and change aspects of it and try again or else start over with new fabric. You can then wear your item (once bought it will appear in a shopping bag in your suite) or you can make money and sell it in Starbazaar to other Stardolls. Some members make-to-order for other Stardolls and I find you get phases of everyone trying out Hello Kitty or Chanel or Tokidoki or whatever. It's really fun and I love how it's brought out the creative side in all the members.

Look at the cute dress I designed today, covered in lipsticks, it was quite an easy design and didn't take that long to do.

Wednesday, 27 August 2008

Irregular Choice Autumn/Winter 2008

I'm very, very excited by the new A/W collection from Irregular Choice. The above image is a still of the preview pictures from the IC homepage. There are lots of shoe-boots and a real textural feel with suede, patent, fringing and buttons. After a so-so S/S range (in my opinion), it's good to see IC back to form and I'm sure I'll be spending a lot of money on them over the next few months. Initial stock of the new range is expected tomorrow at IC. Below image is Audrina.
Phutwear already have a few styles on their site (below) and through their eBay shop. High Horses is a court shoe with detachable 'leg' to transform into a boot, gorgeous! Alphabite (black suede, not shown) is a cute lace-up shoe-boot as is the glorious patent Flick Flack. I'm also loving the new rocket soles and matching boxes.

Heidi Seeker Fawn Bag

Head over to Heidi Seeker to see the wonderful new woodland animals collection. I love the fawn bag (£12) which is covered in pearls, charms and badges. There's also necklaces (£8) and jumpers (£32) too! Plus there's a free felt pin with all orders over £20.

The return of the UD lipstick

Browsing the US Urban Decay site a couple of months ago I spotted these glorious lipsticks. Apparently available in the UK next month, I'm really pleased to see the return of the UD lipstick. I was a fan of the old style metal containers and some of the colours were really pretty. UD have outdone themselves with the new cute, punky packaging this time though. A metallic purple tube with see-through decorated lid and little dagger adorning the base. There are several finishes and the wonderful KarlaSugar has swatched them for you. So click to see her images and decide which colour you want before they even hit our stores!

You gotta have Faith

Ok, these may possibly be the cutest boots I've ever seen (above), I'm not kidding. They have me all in a tizz, with their cute rounded cut, frill trim and bow (so next season). They are just adorable, shame about the ugly name 'Stogo'. Also available in black (I prefer the grey) they cost £80.

Also catching my eye are these Gwyneth Paltrow-esque gold glads (above), 'Labetty' £70 and these peep-toe 'Sunly' boots (below, also available in black), £85. I also love this kitsch little bag £30, very cute. Go Faith!

Saturday, 23 August 2008

Philosophy Hope in a Jar Review

I've always been really lucky to have trouble free skin. As a teenager I never had a spot, my skin was always glowing and I could use anything on it and it wouldn't react. When I hit my mid-20's though that all changed. Spots became more frequent and I was always trying out new blemish remedies. I'm sure by some standards my skin still looked great, but I'm a bit of a perfectionist and wanted totally clear skin again. Then last year I had a terrible break-out whilst using The Body Shop Tea-Tree Oil. Most of the lower part of my face (where I'm more prone to spots) had broken out in these rash-like bumps. They weren't big blemishes, but there were so many of them. It was a real knock to my confidence as makeup could cover the redness but not conceal the bumps.

I took lots of skincare advice and decided that what I needed was to simplify my whole routine. I needed to find the cause of the problem as well as getting my skin back to normal. So I had to go back to using products that I knew worked for me. I used No7 cleanser and toner but I've never really had a favourite moisturiser and often tried GWP sample sizes. I had been using Nivea Creme (in the blue tub) on occasion when my skin was playing up as well as using it as an eye cream, so I decided to just use this. It is a very rich cream though, so I needed to find a lighter one for daytime. I'd heard lots of good things about Philosophy Hope in a Jar and saw it was coming up on QVC, so took a (desperate) chance and ordered some of that.

I had expected it to be a really luxurious cream with comforting scent, so I was really surprised when I tried it. It has a strange consistency, it's really light and almost watery. It didn't feel like it was going to sink into my skin even although it wasn't 'sitting' on top of it either. The smell is very strange, I can't put my finger on it, not at all fragrant like I'd expected.

However, I must say I noticed results almost immediately. It didn't work miracles and clear my skin up in a day, but it did make the skin look plump and glowing. So I used this every morning, Nivea at night and Calamine Lotion on the rash areas. It took about a year for my skin to clear up and even now it's not totally back to 'normal'. Although I'll never touch Tea-Tree again, I can still break-out when I change moisturisers. Just last week, I ran out of Hope in a Jar and my skin has been playing up. I have been using a (very expensive) Lancome moisturiser during the day and Dior (also expensive) at night, as I feel Nivea is too heavy for the summer months. Luckily QVC is showing Philosophy today so I am definitely buying more Hope. It's quite expensive, but I realise that it works for my skin, so I have to use it. I usually buy the value set and get hooked on the other products in it too, but I'll tell you more about them in another post.

I have heard some people say that the scent of Hope is too much for them. I don't like it, but it isn't overpowering for me. Some also say that they felt the moisturiser was greasy or broke them out, but it's never done that to me. I guess each person has to try it for themselves, although I'm not keen on the texture or scent it just works wonders for me, so I'll keep using it. Let me know if you love it or hate it, by posting a comment below or emailing me.

Friday, 22 August 2008

Bank Holiday Weekend Treats

Personally I've never seen the fuss with 'woohoo it's a bank holiday weekend'. It's probably as I've always had a job that wasn't Monday to Friday and included working weekends so never got the benefit of 3 whole days off together.

Anyway several websites are distributing discount codes for free shipping and the like, so here are some for you to use. Go on, treat yourself, it's bank holiday weekend!!!

Dorothy Perkins, free shopper bag with any order over £40. Available while stocks last, no code required, see DP website for more info.

ASOS, when you spend £100 get
£15 off with code LONGWEEKEND on Friday 22nd and Saturday 23rd.
£10 off with code MYOFFER on Sunday 24th.
£5 off with code FIVEROFF on Monday 25th.

OR receive free standard delivery with any order that includes a minimum £10 spend on beauty or jewellery, enter the code FINISHTHELOOK, expires midnight 26th August.

Clinique receive a free 50ml Take The Day Off Eye Makeup Remover and 15ml Moisture Surge Extended Thirst Relief with any online purchase over £30. Enter the code FREEDUO at the checkout, expires end 24th August.

OR receive free standard delivery with any order over £30, enter code del30. Offer expires end of 26th August. Plus all Clinique orders qualify for 2 free samples (all year round).

Oli free standard delivery on all orders placed during bank holiday weekend (up to and including Tuesday 26th), enter code RASP.

Coco Violet free delivery with code IHEARTAUTUMN.

Look Fantastic £2 off when you spend £20, enter code AUG08 in promotional box on basket page.

Estee Lauder Spend £20 and get free delivery and a 2-week trial of Idealist Pore Minimizing Skin Refinisher, enter code AUGUST. Plus every order at EL qualifies for 2 free samples (all year round).

Punky Pins, summer sale, up to 65% off selected items, no code needed, ends midnight 25th August.

BeneFit free standard delivery when you spend £50, enter code FREEDELI, offer ends 31st December 2008. US girls can get free shipping at with any purchase of the new Powderflage Set (powder concealer and brush set) by entering code PWDRFLGE (offer expires 26th August) or for free international shipping from the US site, enter code INTLSHIP and spend $100 or more.

Lancome free delivery with any order until 25th August. Plus spend £35 to receive your choice of 2 free samples and £45 to receive a free trio of mini lipstick (L'Absolu Rouge 132), blusher (Blush Subtil 08) and mascara (Virtuose Black Carat). Any order can be gift wrapped for free. No codes required.

MAC free standard delivery on all orders over £50. No code required.

Heatherette for Irregular Choice

Irregular Choice made me very happy this week when they finally got stock of the Heatherette shoes they designed. I've had my eye on these for a looooong time now. IC and Heatherette have been working together for a couple of years and IC produce shoes for the Heatherette fashion shows which are then available as a limited edition style on the IC site.
My favourite are gold and pink Faster Pussycat boots which have yet to appear on the site (although I'm told new stock is still being made). I do really like the silver/bright blue/pink Electra Love and blue/silver Faster Pussycat, although at £100 each, I feel I have to wait for my favourite to arrive.
There is also the strappy, is it a shoe, is it a boot? Super Vixen £145, available in black, silver or blue. See the styles on the catwalk below and get yours now as once they're gone, they're gone.

Thursday, 21 August 2008

Tempting Tartan

Sorry for the lack of posts this past week, dodgy showers (yes, again) have taken priority. Anyway on with the fashion. Tartan is set to be a huge trend for A/W. Personally I think it'll be a little like the star print of S/S. It'll be all over the high-street, everyone will wear it, then by the time Autumn arrives, we'll be sick of it. Also being Scottish, I'm always wary of wearing tartan, unless of course it's done well (think Vivienne Westwood and Alexander McQueen).

I would wear the odd touch though, like shoes or a bag. I owned a beautiful Westwood inspired blue tartan bag from Topshop years ago. It had a gold frame and red satin lining and I used it to death. It was a real granny-bag and working in London at the time, nobody would believe that I bought it on Oxford Street rather than back home. Yes Londoners, apparently tartan isn't restricted to north of the border! I also have a pair of Faith red tartan pointed shoes, with thin leather strap details that are almost joining the bag in 'accessories heaven'. I have yet to go out without someone commenting on these shoes. They are stunning, so I snapped up the Office Dolly Interbow (above) in exactly the same tartan a couple of years ago to replace the waning pair.

This week ASOS got these black shoe-boots which, upon closer inspection, possess a rather cool pink tartan heel. This is exactly how such a trend should be incorporated into your wardrobe. It's subtle but still manages to add interest to an otherwise blah shoe. You could also still wear these past the 'tartan? so last season' stage. I love them!

Thursday, 14 August 2008

Moda in Pelle A/W '08

Moda in Pelle have an incredible new collection for Autumn/Winter. There are much more on-trend and classy styles in place of the sometimes overly glitzy, girly, WAG styles.

Cariah £85, are available for pre-order, with delivery expected for the end of August. They are very Christina Aguilera or Dita Von Teese. Sexy leopard print, red trim and heel, uber glam. Also available in zebra print.
Nightfever £80 are gorgeous shoe boots, available in 3 glossy shades of black, purple or red. Complete with red-sole and gold trim, I want them in all colours.

Maloni £120 are the most expensive of the bunch. They are gloriously high platforms that even Gwyneth Paltrow would be jealous of. They are like a more wintery version of the summer gladiator that just won't go away. Very fierce looking, I love them.

Dazys £80, are clearly the high-street-girls ' Christian Louboutin Anemone'. That's ok though, because the CL style was awesome and MiP have done a good enough job with these. I think this style will prove to be very popular, available in red or black with diamante detail on the bow.

Boots No7 Autumn GWP

It's Gift With Purchase time again at No7 (when isn't it these days?). I always get the GWP, it's such good value and you usually get a full sized lip product inside (costing around £9.50). I have many of their lovely lipsticks, mostly from the GWP's. It used to be that you spent £15 on No7, but it's gone up to £20 now (still worth getting though, as the set is worth upwards of £30). Now, I almost feel I'm in the habit of getting it every time and perhaps spend money I needn't. It's probably now that I'm into MAC that I realise No7 is around the same price and if push came to shove, I'd rather have MAC.

I do have many staples I use from the brand though, mainly their skincare. I don't get on well with their moisturisers, but I do like the cleanser, toner and eye make-up remover. I have also bought more of their concealer than I can remember and love the Touche Eclat dupe too.

I also usually buy the Limited Edition makeup ranges too. Although they are similarily priced, they are usually of great quality and in much funkier packaging than the regular line. Seeing as I've bought lots from No7 over the years in such promotions, I have practically the entire range and don't get the opportunity to use it all up, so it's easier to get LE items. I'm not sure what I'll purchase this time. I have more details of the LE range over at Celeb Style (in the news section), or I may be sensible (and boring) and buy some staple skincare. The GWP comes in a cute make-up bag and contains some great products. I already own the Whisper lipgloss you get, it's a really pretty shimmery nude. Available in most Boots and online at

Wednesday, 13 August 2008

Primark/New Look/Boots Haul

I did a little retail therapy yesterday and was very pleased with my haul. I already told you about the pink lace platforms I bought in New Look. I also got huge (no, really massive!) pearls which I saw in Cosmo (I think?) a while back. They are glorious, pretty heavy though. I also picked up the black patent croc boots I told you about recently. They are amazing! I was prancing around in them in the shop, thinking they are just the sexiest pair of booties I've seen! I had on black tights at the time and they looked really great with that. I also saw a lovely pair of fringed, hot pink suede ankle boots (maybe NL's version of the Louboutin pair!). There wasn't a 5 in the pink, but I tried on another colour and they were a little tight, but the 6 gaped slightly, so I left them for now.

I also went to Primark and decided I wasn't trying everything on, so I hope what I bought, fits. I got 6 dresses and a pair of the black peep-toe lace-ups that I told you about ages ago. I can't believe this is them just arriving instore now, anyway I was glad to get them.
I also got the 17 Vintage Set from Boots, that was free with any £5 purchase on 17. I bought an Eye Dust and lip pencil. The set itself is gorgeous. It contains a nail polish, eyeshadow (really shimmery) and lipgloss with cute retro design on them. It was the last day of the offer, so I went with the purpose of getting it!

Bourjois Shimmering Shine Eyeshadow

New from Bourjois are these gorgeous liquid eyeshadows. They come in a pot, similar to the loose powder eyeshadows, complete with little applicator. These shadows are extremely shiney, metallic really. I had a quick test yesterday and really liked the teal, I'm always drawn to this colour, and also the silvery grey. They are water based, so feel really cool and glide onto the skin, and mistakes are easily erased. According to Bourjois they are crease-proof, but having not tested them on the eye I'm unsure if they live up to that. They are currently on offer at Boots, so I think I'll be picking up a couple.

Lace Look

I was in New Look yesterday for a quick shoes naturally. They appear to be going lace crazy at the moment. There are peep-toes, platforms, courts, boots, slingbacks, flats, everything really, even bags to match. I bought a pair similar to these below, but with dark pink fabric under the black lace. They are really pretty and cost a very reasonable £25, they were also available in grey, but I prefer the pink myself.
I must admit, I am partial to a bit of lace, whether it's on-trend or not. I realised that I now own quite a few pairs of lace shoes myself. I have the New Look peep-toes I bought recently in the sale. Pink lace courts with velvet bow from ASOS, I also got a matching clutch.

These beautiful slingbacks, with bow detail on the front and back from Shellys, possibly my faves.

Plus these Terry de Havilland green metallic boots, which are far more stunning than in the picture. I haven't had the occasion to wear these yet.

I also had a pair of Oasis cone heeled peep-toes, which I don't have a picture of. They were gold with black lace, but if memory serves me, I took them to a charity shop in a clear-out a little while back. There's a little bit of variety in that lot, so I think I'm quite happy at the moment with my lacey footwear collection!