Sunday, 8 November 2015

Asos: Wishin'

I have recently been spending all my time browsing Asos. After learning I got the job which I had interviewed for last week, I've been excited about getting back into a working environment, and most importantly - being able to treat myself again without feeling majorly guilty afterwards. Knowing me there probably will still be guilt but hopefully my nice new clothes will make up for that fact! Asos have been a favourite for me for a while as they just seem to have everything you could possibly want (or need). The delivery is always cheap and fast and I've never had any problems with them so far. The pieces below are some which I have recently added into my saved items and hopefully will be making their way to me soon.

There is a lot of chunky knits and cosy looking jumpers, perfect for this time for year. Also a few other items which I just like the look of (such as the Vans t-shirt), I'm a big fan of comfort while also looking like you're put some effort in! Everything is linked below;

New Look Suedette Ponte Front Leggings
Vans Oversized Boyfriend T-Shirt With Logo
Monki Roll Neck Slouchy Jumper
New Look Tassel Jumper
Asos Chunky Rib Jumper With V-Neck
Adidas Archive Panel T-Shirt
New Look Inspire Scoop Neck Knit Jumper
Reclaimed Vintage Button Front Tea Dress

These are just some of the things I have been lusting over recently, what is on your wish list? Have you brought anything from Asos before?

Madi x


Saturday, 7 November 2015

Behind the Scenes: Testing Smoke Bombs!

I am currently planning a series of images/shoots at uni which are portraiture following the theme of mental health. I want to create a fairytale vibe, the classic damsel in distress but instead of a dragon she is suffering from depression or anxiety etc

This is quite a personal topic which is very close to my heart and I want to create these series of images as a sort of awareness, as mental health is something which many people struggle with but I don't feel is talked about enough. 

I am going to be doing the proper shoot sometime this week with my sister. One of the props I will be using for this shoot will be smoke bombs and having never let one off before I thought it would be a good idea to test before it comes to the actual shoot!

The location which we found for me to shoot in is beautiful, especially at this time of year when the trees are so many different colours! I got my dad to actually light the smoke bomb so I could document it, I got these off of amazon as they had quite high reviews from other photography students. I thought they would be quite hard to light but it wasn't that difficult. The amount of smoke you get is really good, perfect for my shoots. It lasts for around 50-55 seconds as well which is a decent amount of time, after lighting this one I have 9 left which should definitely be enough!

What do you think of the images? Would you be interested in seeing the images from the shoot once it is completed?

Madi x 

Friday, 6 November 2015

Things I Want To Make More Time For

After watching EsteƩ Lalonde's video I felt inspired to create my own post about things which I want to make more time for and share these to hopefully inspire some of you too. Coming into adulthood I have found myself getting busier and busier and letting the things which I enjoy doing just for me slip away and putting other things first. While this is sometimes necessary I do think it's always important to look after yourself and take some time to do things which you enjoy.

Me Time
One thing which I would like to make some more time for is looking after myself. This is something which should be done everyday but sadly most of the time doesn't as other seemingly more important things get in the way. Whether it's spending half an hour painting my nails, buying some magazines or books to read with a cup of tea or booking in to have my hair cut I want to make sure that I remember to pamper myself every so often.

Going Offline
Much like one of the points in EsteƩ's video, I think most people could benefit from turning technology off for a while. We are in a world which is overrun with phones, laptops and TV's so it is completely refreshing to spend some a little bit of time, even the afternoon away from them.Whether thats just reading a book instead of staring at the TV or hanging out with family I always find myself much happier when I've been away from my phone or computer for a while.

Being a photography student I am surrounded by photography all the time, whether it's creating work for shoots or researching into other photographers. Lately I have realised that I don't create much personal work away from uni anymore so this is something that I would like to change. I think this blog could really help with this, I am also looking to invest in a smaller camera so I can take it around with me a lot more which will make it easier for me to capture images.

This is something which I used to do a lot however it has changed in recent months as I've become busier so instead of cooking meals I enjoy I generally go for the easiest, quickest option! I'm not the best chef in the world but I do enjoy creating/making dishes and I love a lot of flavour in my food. Instead of ordering takeaways I should definitely cook for myself more as it would benefit me health wise while also saving me money and is some much more satisfying. 

This one is something which I definitely need to do more of. I would love to get out the house a bit more and exercise as it is something which obviously has various health benefits and is something which I really enjoy to do once I get the motivation to do it! Even just taking my dog for a gentle relaxing walk or putting on a yoga video would be a good place to start.

These are a few things which I want to make more time for, what are yours? 

Madi x


Friday, 30 October 2015

Oreo Cupcakes

As it is half-term and I've had a very boring Friday I decided that I wanted to do some baking. I saw this recipe online and decided I wanted to give it a go. 

For the cupcakes you will need:

175g Butter
165g Caster Sugar
3 Eggs
40g Coco Powder
125g Self-raising Flour
1 tsp Baking Powder
1 pack Oreos

Before you start baking you want to pre-heat your oven to 180c (gas mark 4).

You will need to leave out your butter for a short while before baking to make it soft, this means it will be easier to work with.

To make the cupcakes you'll need to mix your butter and your caster sugar together until they are creamy and smooth. Then add your egg and mix.
After adding your egg you'll then need to add all your flour, coco powder and baking powder. I had these all combined in a separate bowl and added them this way. To make it easier you can add it gradually instead of all at once. Mix your batter until smooth and combined.

For my Oreo cupcakes I decided to add an oreo at the bottom in the cupcake cases to add a little surprise however you can leave this step out if you wish. You want to fill the cases getting them as even as possible.
Put them in the oven for 15 mins however check on them after every 2 mins from this time to see how they are cooking. Most ovens will be different so this is just a handy step to make sure you don't undercook them or burn them. You will need to insert a knife or skewer into the cupcakes, if this comes out clean then they are done and you can take them out the oven and leave them to cool.

For the icing I made a simple buttercream with added oreos. For this you will need:

100g Butter
200g Icing Sugar
Half Pack of Oreos

To make the icing always make sure that you use double the icing sugar to your amount of butter. You may think it won't work but keep mixing and it will. Cream your butter and icing sugar together until they are (surprise, surprise) creamy. You'll need to either put your Oreo's in a food processor or break them up by putting them in a bag, wrapping it in a tea towel and beating it with a rolling pin. As I don't have a food processor I used the latter and it worked well.
Once you add the Oreo's to the butter cream it will make it a lovely oreo colour. If you wanted to ice this onto your cupcakes I suggest putting a dash of milk in to make it easier however I felt like just messily putting it on with a knife, it was more fun this way and just as pretty.

You can also use half an Oreo to decorate like I did or you could crush some more Oreo's and sprinkle them on, either way is good. 

I'm really pleased with the way that these came out, baring in mind I did use gluten free flour which I don't think has made any difference to the look or taste. My family have been eating them all afternoon so I think they're a hit!

Let me know if you've tried them and any tips of your own for baking!

Madi x

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