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How to wear yellow

If you follow me on Instagram, you’ll know that I am (very) prone to wearing a lot of black.

Anyone else scared of bright colours? Cause I am TERRIFIED.

But this year, I am embracing ‘terrified’, so hence, in this post, I’m wearing bright colours! If you’re a bit wary like me, team a bright jumper with black jeans and accessories so the colour is the focus of the outfit. Et voila, you’ve nailed it!

This gorgeous mustard/ochre yellow jumper is from Oasis and it’s a perfect colour to wear in time for Spring. (Basically just tryna dress like a daffodil)

What fashion fears are you going to conquer this year?

Outfit details

Oasis Cable Knit jumper in Bright Yellow £36

ASOS Brixton Womens Baker Boy hat £40 (perfect for small heads!)

Urban Outfitters BDG black skinny jeans £45

Urban Outfitters Western Leather belt £28

ASOS Vagabond black leather boots £80

 

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Exercise and Mental Health

I’m not a big exercise person. I don’t LOVE the gym, I don’t get a rush from doing a HIIT workout and the last thing I want to do is sign up to a bloomin’ marathon.

Having said that, I’d rather be doing a Pilates class, or spend 10 mins in a steam room than sitting at home in a mess of misery and Kit Kat wrappers, watching reruns of The Apprentice.

We all have the odd down day, some of us more than others, and it’s so easy to slump into that all-familiar downward spiral of doom and gloom. When you’re knackered and can’t be bothered with life, the last thing you want to do is put lycra leggings on and go to a circuits class. BELIEVE ME, I know.

But sometimes I ask myself, what is sitting around feeling miserable going to achieve? Is it going to make me happier? No. Is it going to make me feel better about my life? No.

So I FORCE myself (with a bit of added motivation from my mum and boyfriend) to get off my bum, throw on an old t-shirt and do some exercise! Whether it’s a 10 minute walk round the block to get some fresh air, or a proper sesh in the gym (I use the term ‘sesh’ lightly…), I will now nearly always try and do at least 10 mins of exercise when I’m feeling rubbish.

So why exercise? Why not shopping or reading or eating?

One word: ENDORPHINS. I bloody love endorphins, I don’t really know what they are but I know they exist and I know that they’re GOOD. Maybe it’s psychological, maybe it’s not, but I know that I feel better when I’ve got out the house and moved around a bit.

It’s such an easy and simple thing to do, plus you’ll feel like you’ve achieved something that day – something more than reminding yourself of who was ‘fired’ in Series 9, episode 6 (it was Rebecca, in case you were wondering).

In the words of Elle Woods (lol I am always quoting Legally Blonde):

 

‘Exercise gives you endorphins.

Endorphins make you happy.

Happy people just don’t kill their husbands, they just don’t. ’

 

Damn right they don’t, Elle.

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Pork Crackling and Apple Sauce at The Pig, Brockenhurst

It’s hard not to feel autumnal as you walk up the gravel track among the firs and the conifers, pine cones scattered over the dewy lawn. Despite me getting overexcited at a sign for the ‘Kitchen Garden’, it is FREEZING, and the smell of a woodburning fire entices us indoors, enveloping us in warmth.

The Pig in Brockenhurst is a small hotel with a focus on food. Nearly everything on the menu is grown on site or foraged-for nearby, so whether it comes from the forest or the coast, you know it’s as fresh as possible.

The interior is traditional with an informal twist. Boars’ heads frame the walls and colourful crystal glasses are lined up on antique dressers, but the menus tied up in garden string and napkin rings made from newspaper make for a ‘homemade’ feel. The sun-filled conservatory with bright, mis-matching floor tiles covered in potted plants is reminiscent of my Grandpa’s potting shed, though probably a bit more elegant.

But the real reason behind The Pig’s popularity, is the food. Their 25 mile menu (the idea being that most of the produce comes from within a 25 mile radius) boasts lamb and pork from Romsey, fresh Lymington crab and tomatoes from the Isle of Wight. All the herbs and most of the veg come straight from the Kitchen Garden, hence one section of the menu being called ‘Mostly Picked This Morning’. Try the curried cauliflower and Brocks Eggs – you won’t be disappointed – and whatever you do, don’t leave The Pig without trying some pork, or at least some crackling and apple sauce! The ‘Tomahawk’ pork chop is so flavoursome and you can mop up the sauce with a chunk of warm bread and Garden Herb-Infused Oil.

The Pig manages to combine simple, natural ingredients with an elegant, quirky touch that leaves your tastebuds tingling for hours. If, like me, you dream of roasting parsnips and boiling beetroot fresh from your vegetable patch, head to The Pig for inspiration. And while you’re at it, grab an armchair in front of the fire, and order yourself some ‘Piggy Bits’ (how do you expect me to dream about my Kitchen Garden, when I haven’t even tried  the pea and ham hummus yet?!).

 

 

 

Outfit details:

ZARA checked dress – £29.99

ACCESSORIZE black wool beret – £12

PRIMARK black wooden heel boots – £20 (similar ones from Office if you click this link!) 

 

 

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I have a confession…

It’s something I’ve been meaning to tell you for years but I haven’t had the courage to do it until today. I’ve been repressing it for ages, but now I feel so confident in who I am, what I do and what I like, I’m finally ready to tell you my biggest secret. I try to keep my blog as a safe space so please don’t judge me, but instead respect that I am writing this with a newfound courage that I hope doesn’t backfire. I haven’t wanted to admit it, but the fact is…

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Oh how people laughed when I told them I was going to the Chelsea Flower Show! ‘It’s the first festival weekend and you’d rather be going to the Chelsea Flower Show?!’ Yes, readers, yes I would. I don’t understand why you wouldn’t want to go if I’m honest. What’s not to like about drinking Pimms in the sun all day surrounded by beautifully designed gardens?

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As I stood waiting to meet my mum, however, I did realise that it was basically a convention for middle-aged women to show off their latest two piece from Phase Eight, boast about their begonias and coo over dishy Gardener’s World presenter, Monty Don. But if you can’t beat them, join them.

The show gardens were absolutely beautiful. Critically acclaimed landscape architects and designers create incredible, innovative structures that are set amongst beautiful planting. The gardens are usually based on a theme or inspired by a place, but every single one is entirely different.

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My favourite of the show gardens was called the Mathematics Garden. When I heard about it on the TV coverage I thought it sounded so boring – what’s maths got to do with flowers?! Lol I was so wrong. 

In the corner of the garden was a huge, copper, circular structure with an open staircase leading down to a pathway. (I think I loved it so much because copper is my favourite thing at the moment and I have loads of little indoor plants in copper pots, see example A.) The harsh copper structure was contrasted by trailing honeysuckles and ivies that fell from the top of the platform to the bottom, creating a shady space underneath that overlooked a circular pond. The plants consisted of lupins, irises, and fox gloves – plants that are typically associated with a cottage garden. However, palm and eucalyptus trees added a tropical side to the garden making it somewhat more exotic. The whole concept of the garden was the link between maths and nature. The copper platform was based on the Fibonacci spiral, found in pine cones and aloe vera plants, both of which were present in the garden. 

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The little plant that I got at Chelsea and Example A

Believe it or not, looking at flowers is tiring work. One of my favourite things about Chelsea is the middle-class food hall where houmous is on tap and everything is served with a vegetable crisp. From where we were sitting you could see the BBC Press Tent complete with an elevated, alfresco studio space, encircled with flowers. A crowd waited patiently below, ready with their digital cameras to snap Monty Don’s face when he turned around. I honestly couldn’t believe it when he eventually did turn around and the crowd starting cheering and applauding. Hoards of middle aged, middle class, flower show-goers losing their shit over a man with dirty hands and a scruffy blue jacket. (I didn’t snapchat the whole thing or take any selfies with Monty in the background, nope, not me, not at all…) 

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My favourite thing at Chelsea is the Royal Pavillion, full to the brim with blooming begonias, extra long leeks and prize-winning parsnips. The people that grow these are both an bizarre mixture of completely bonkers and absolutely incredible. The passion that exudes from breeders displaying their perfect peonies is infectious, and the best thing is that at 4pm on the last day, there’s a huge plant sell-off! Just before 4 there’s a 10 second countdown, 10… 9… and then suddenly everyone’s rushing to get bargain deals on french lavenders, fighting over fox gloves, and even grabbing roses by their thorny stems! I managed to get myself a ‘small’ bunch of tulips for a fiver by haggling with the stall owner’s son, who, it turned out, didn’t know what a tulip was. 

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They were particularly fun to carry back on the tube, although my sincere apologies do go out to anyone I accidentally whacked in the face… they did impair my vision slightly. The Chelsea Flower Show is for everyone, not just for middle class flower lovers, but for younger people, children, boyfriends, girlfriends, aunties and uncles. We met a 90 year old woman there who rode a moped! The only people I wouldn’t advise to go are ones with an extreme problem with hayfever.

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As always, in case anyone cares, my dress is from Zara and can be purchased here!

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This peony tho 

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