Mixtape: September

30.9.14


September Mixtape · via Spotify

This month I have been well and truly getting my money's worth from Spotify. Usually I just listen to music I already know, with the occasional browse through the "what's new" section, but whilst I've been at work in the shop over the last few weeks I've been taking advantage of Spotify radio. It has been throwing up lots of songs I love, songs I'd forgotten about and, of course, plenty of new songs too. As usual, this month's mixtape is a bit of a mixed bag - but plenty of nice and depressing songs, just the way I like it!

The Tallest Man on Earth · The Dreamer
M. Ward · Never Had Nobody Like You
Queen · Killer Queen
The Mountain Goats · No Children
Paolo Nutini · Last Request
Ella Henderson · Ghost
Phosphorescent · Song for Zula
Angus & Julia Stone · And the Boys
Beck · Turn Away
Iron & Wine · The Trapeze Swinger
Listen to "September" here.

What have you been listening to this month?

Gillian x

Sunday Summary #143

28.9.14

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1.New notebooks 2.Sunny Rose Street 3.Scarf weather 4.Q&A a day

Sunday again, already?! This week seems to have flown past, as usual. The next couple of weekends are full of catch-ups and events and other social engagements, so I decided I was going to do as little as possible this weekend. Despite planning to stay in bed all day yesterday, I had quite a productive day (for me, anyway) and did lots of laundry, sorted out my sock drawer (a surprisingly time consuming task), tidied my room a bit, washed my makeup brushes, and tackled the huge pile of dishes that needed washed. The dishwasher is broken again and I want to cry - washing dishes is my least favourite of all the boring and terrible household chores!

Earlier in the week I headed along to Hair By JFK's Bruntsfield salon for a "pre-party pamper night". I got my fringe trimmed at the Bang Bar and then got some lovely loose curls in my hair - all the while sipping my wine and tucking into sushi from the neighbouring Harajuku Kitchen. If only every trip to the hairdressers was like that! There was also nails and makeup on offer, and we heard all about JFK's student deals. Sadly I'm no longer a student (as much as I wish I was!) but if you are it's definitely worth signing up for JFK's student club card. Not only do you get a student discount, you can also collect "hair miles" which you can redeem against hair cuts and services.

The rest of this week has mostly just involved work - I'm getting so boring these days! This afternoon Laura and I are going to cook ourselves a magnificent Sunday roast, eat too much food and probably have a nap on the sofa in front of X Factor. Definitely old before our time.

What have you been up to this week?

Gillian x

Edinburgh: Burger Shandwick Place

26.9.14

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I'm sure, by now, there's no need for me to tell you how much I love burgers. I've also professed my love for Edinburgh restaurant Burger before, so when they invited me along to review their new(ish) Shandwick Place eatery I couldn't turn them down. So, my burger loving babe of a pal Laura and I headed down one evening after work to stuff our little faces full of Burger goodness - all in the name of blogging of course! The Shandwick Place restaurant is bigger than its Fountainbridge counterpart, but with the same industrial, cool, New York-y sort of feel.

One thing I love about Burger is their small (but very well-formed) menu which is brought to life with imaginative specials which change weekly. We happened to be visiting on the day of the Referendum, so the specials menu that week was full of Scottish-themed burgers like the Auld Reekie which was a veggie burger topped with cheese & whisky sauce and the Black & Blue Burger which combined a beef burger, Dunsyre Blue cheese, black pudding and apple chutney. Yum! I was very tempted by the Black & Blue, but after much deliberation I decided to go for a Chicken Katsu Burger from the regular menu. Burger also do hot dogs and Laura chose the Scottie Dog special which came topped with haggis, tattie mustard mayo and pickled neeps.

Burger is fast food but done very well. As with a fast food restaurant, you order at the counter and after 5 or so minutes your burger arrives on a tray. But that's about where the similarity ends. The food is delicious with juicy burgers, sweet brioche buns, crispy salted fries and freshly made dipping sauces arriving at your table within minutes - no soggy buns, dry burgers or undercooked chips here! This was the first time I had tried the Chicken Katsu option from Buger and I was very pleased with my choice. The tender chicken burger was covered in crispy Panko breadcrumbs and smothered with katsu sauce inside a lightly toasted brioche bun, along with tomato (which I removed - raw tomatoes are the devil!), pickle and a wee bit of wasabi mayo. At just £4.95 for a single burger (you can double up or add bacon, cheese etc. for a wee bit extra), Burger's prices are very reasonable and the portions are the perfect size to keep you full without feeling stuffed by the end.

My second favourite thing about Burger (after the burgers, of course) is definitely their shakes. I've become a bit of a regular at their Fountainbridge restaurant, and nearly every time I've ordered the shake from that week's specials menu. The boozy ones are my favourites (bellini and raspberry daiquiri shakes were previous highlights) so I was pleased to see a Cranachan Shake was on the menu this time. Vanilla frozen custard ice cream, raspberries, oatmeal crumble and whisky - what's not to love?!

All in all, I can't recommend Burger enough. The food is great, the service is quick and friendly and it doesn't break the bank either. The Shandwick Place restaurant is just two minutes walk from Princes Street so is perfect for some post-shopping fuel or something to eat before heading out on the town. Their classic burgers are very tasty (I quite often opt for the bacon cheeseburger) but I'd definitely urge you to try something from the specials menu if it catches your eye - you won't be disappointed!

You can find Burger at 91-93 Shandwick Place, Edinburgh, EH2 4SD, and online on the Burger website, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

Are you a fan of Burger?

Gillian x

Sunday Summary #142

21.9.14

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1.Raspberry & Rhubarb Crabbie's 2.New Kirsteen Stewart necklace from madefromscotland.com 3.Mulberry bags 4.Dinner at Burger 5.Edinburgh at dusk 6.Nando's 7.Beer drinking at The Hanging Bat

After a fairly uneventful few weeks, it has been quite nice to be busy with lots of fun stuff this week. There's been blogger events, burgers, dinner and drinks and, of course, plenty of Netflix and naps too.

On Wednesday evening I headed along to the Edinburgh Mulberry store for a little launch evening for the Cara Delevingne collection. I did my best to disguise my £12 Primark bag and spent a couple of hours admiring all the bags and the A/W clothes whilst nibbling canapes and sipping champagne. I did rather like the Mini Oxblood bag from the Cara Delevingne Collection (which was in fact up for grabs in a raffle on the night - sadly I didn't win!), but I think I have fallen in love with the Navy Willow Tote. Coming in at £2,000 though, I don't think it will ever be in my price range!

On Thursday I took a trip to the new(ish) branch of Burger on Shandwick Place - stay tuned for a full review soon. As we happened to be visiting on Referendum day, the specials menu was suitably Scottish themed and there was plenty of haggis, whisky and Irn Bru involved. I let the side down slightly by having a chicken katsu burger, but the cranachan milkshake I had afterwards more than made up for it!

Saturday was a fairly relaxed day with a long lie followed by an afternoon of lounging around the flat. In the evening, Laura and I went to Nando's to fill ourselves up with chicken and sangria, then we did a mini pub crawl (well, I say that, but we only went to two pubs so I don't think a pub crawl is entirely accurate). First up was The Hanging Bat where I sampled some craft beer, then it was on to Lebowski's. Sadly neither Laura or I like White Russians so we stuck to good old Rekorderlig instead! After that it was a quick stop at the chip shop before heading home to bed.

This week I've also been imparting my knowledge of Edinburgh over on the Phase Eight blog. To celebrate the recent relaunch of their Edinburgh store, the lovely Phase Eight folks asked me a few questions about my favourite city for their Edinburgh City Guide blog post. Find out some of my insider tips, favourite places to go and things to see in Edinburgh over on their blog here.

What have you been up to this week?

Gillian x

Today's Makeup #5: Peachy Keen

17.9.14

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For the last few months I've been very much stuck in my ways when it comes to my makeup, but this weekend I had a play around with a couple of new products for a slightly different look that was still quick and easy. I'm usually more of a pinky-red kinda person, but the lovely peachy shade of the Rimmel Apocalips* in Luna inspired me to be a bit more warm and bronzey with the rest of my makeup choices.

For the base, I stuck to my old faithful, Estee Lauder Double Wear Light in the shade 1. I'm not entirely sure why I keep buying new foundations because I love this one and it's pretty much perfect - it stays in place all day, gives just the right amount of coverage and is a great colour match for my skin. On my cheeks, I went heavy on the contour and light on the blush, using MAC Harmony Blush to define my cheekbones and add a bit of warmth, then NARS Orgasm Blush to perk everything up and add the tiniest bit of highlight.

I know the rest of you have been going on about this product for months and months, but I only just bought myself the Maybelline Colour Tattoo cream eyeshadow in the shade On and On Bronze. I pretty much never wear eyeshadow (cat eye liquid eyeliner TIL I DIE), but this is really easy to smudge on if you want to define your eyes really quickly whilst still keeping your makeup quite low-key. Although I left the liquid eyeliner in my makeup bag this time, I couldn't help but add a wee line of black shadow (the darkest one from the Urban Decay Naked Basics palette) along my upper lashline just to make my lashes look a bit thicker. As for mascara, I opted for the Max Factor False Lash Effect Mascara. This used to be my favourite mascara as far back as my high school days, and I recently repurchased it after a few years of not using it. It's a pretty great mascara for everyday use as it leaves your lashes looking defined and curled without being clumpy. And - of course - I had to define my brows a little bit using my current favourite eyebrow product, the Anastasia Brow Wiz in Brunette.

And that brings us back to lips. The lovely people at The Hut recently sent me one of the Rimmel Apocalips lip lacquers to try out and I really love their choice of Luna. A pale peachy shade probably isn't one that would have immediately jumped out at me if I was shopping for myself, but it's a lovely wearable shade that is great for everyday use. I bought one of the bright pink Apocalips shades when they first came out but it has been sat at the back of a drawer for ages, I think it's time to dig it out again! Apocalips are great if you're after an opaque and glossy lip colour that's a bit lighter than lipstick but not as sticky as lipgloss.

What makeup have you been loving lately?

Gillian x

Sunday Summary #141

14.9.14

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1.Hello 2.Shakeaway Skittles milkshake 3.Chinese takeaway and movies 4.Cosy Sundays

I feel like I say this a lot these days, but this has been a busy but fairly uneventful week. I've mostly just been working away; the madefromscotland.com Pop-Up Shop is now a week old and it's going well so far! I can now add shop girl to my ever-growing list of skills. The only bad thing about working in a shop full of lovely homewares and jewellery is that I want to buy everything for myself - I can feel one or two sneaky little purchases coming on! If you fancy visiting the Pop-Up Shop, you can find us at 115-117 Rose Street.

Apart from that, this week has been almost entirely filled with Netflix and naps. I seem to have lost all motivation to do anything productive these days but hopefully my mojo will return soon. But then again, it's getting pretty autumny and there's nothing better than snuggling up in a blanket and watching films all evening when it's cold and dark outside! Yesterday evening Laura and I ordered a Chinese takeaway and then spent the night watching films and X Factor and it was glorrrrious. One of the things we watched was Napoleon Dynamite, a favourite from my teenage years, and it was still as good as ever. GOSH.

We've got a flat inspection on Tuesday so I think the rest of this afternoon will be spent cleaning the flat, possibly followed by a bit of baking, blog post writing and (no doubt) Netflix.

What have you been up to this week?

Gillian x

Wishlist: Joules Autumn Florals

10.9.14

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It's finally time... I'm allowed to get excited about autumn and winter without being told to shut up by all you sun-worshipers. Not only is this time of year great because it includes Halloween and my birthday, but it's also my favourite time of year for buying new clothes. Summer shopping is my worst nightmare, but give me chunky knits and dark colours and I'm happy as Larry. Another thing I love is floral prints, and Joules are spot-on this year with their deep navy and blue floral patterns teamed with classic Joules mustards and reds.

One of my favourite pieces is the Navy Floral Tunic which looks super soft and comfy, perfect for chucking on with a pair of leggings and boots for an everyday outfit. Joules have lots of lovely floral dresses, and I love all their classic striped ones too! I also love the Floral Wrap skirts which would be ideal with a fitted cardigan for autumny office-wear. Speaking of office-wear (or school-wear, or just any-occasion-war), I reaaaally want the cute little Navy Satchel bag which is complete with floral lining. I'm in dire need of a new bag for everyday use which is big enough to fit my laptop plus all my other stuff, so I might need to treat myself to a satchel!

I also love the range of cosy jumpers and cardigans from Joules, especially that mustard one with floral detailing around the collar. It would look lovely with a little white collared shirt peeking out the top. Another essential for autumn and winter is a good trench coat and I've fallen a little bit in love with this Red Trench Coat from Joules. It's the perfect shade of pillarbox red and the navy floral lining sets it off beautifully. It would make a nice change from my usual uniform of black winter coats!

What have you got your eye on from Joules at the moment?

Gillian x

This post is sponsored by Joules but, as always, opinions are my own.

Sunday Summary #140

7.9.14

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1.Rasperry Ripple cocktails 2.Burger 3.Enchiladas & margaritas 4.Fireworks 5.Post Pop-Up Launch wine 6.Dinner at Frontier

Oh heeeeyyy, long time no speak! August was a pretty busy month, and it looks like September will be too. I feel like I've barely switched my laptop on at all during the last few weeks. But never fear, I'm back with a bumper Sunday Summary (as I didn't have time to do last week's one, oops!) to catch up on what's been going on.

One of the main reasons why I've been super busy is because of work. We've just opened the Madefromscotland.com Pop-Up Boutique on Rose Street and the last two weeks has been a mad rush of building flatpack furniture, trying to get enough stock to fill the shop, designing shop and window displays, and sticking price stickers on eeeeverything (which takes a lot longer than you'd think!). We had our bloggers & press launch party on Thursday evening and then opened properly on Saturday so after lots of planning we now have an official real life shop. If you like supporting independent designers and shopping for quirky homeware, jewellery and fashion accessories, come visit us at 115-117 Rose Street, Edinburgh. We're open 7 days a week until October - and hopefully longer if it turns out to be a success!

Apart from work, most of my other spare time has been spent eating and drinking, as you can probably tell from my Instagram. My partner in (food) crime Laura has accompanied me for burgers at Burger, cocktails at Dragonfly and steak 'n' shakes (twice) at Frontier - all of which get the thumbs up. I also caught up with uni friends at Viva Mexico whilst my best pal was up visiting (followed by a trip to The Hive of course). Not content with all that, in the last couple of weeks I've also headed along to Bar Kohl, Illegal Jack's, The Cuckoo's Nest and The Red Squirrel. Phew!

I feel like I'm very out of the loop with blogging at the moment, so I think this afternoon will be spent attempting to catch up with emails and then reading through my Bloglovin feed. I suppose I better do some boring chores too like doing washing and changing my sheets - having an afternoon nap seems much more appealing however!

What have you been up to lately?

Gillian x