Wednesday 30 May 2012


I'm afraid I'm going to have to take a short break from blogging. Never fear I'll be back next week for Red and Black week! I just need to take a few days to focus on my thesis and apply for some jobs (Ghost Tour Guiding anyone?).

See you all soon!

Sunday 27 May 2012

Hair donation update

As I'm sure you know a couple of months ago I got 8.5 inches of my hair cut off and donated it to Little Princess Trust (Pictures in this post).

They just sent me this:

Yay! I'm going to frame it and put it on the wall with my degree certificate!

Friday 25 May 2012

Too many stars?

I think the heat has melted my brain...

It's 25 degrees Celsius here today. I'm British; of mostly Irish and Welsh decent. I am not built for this... Give me horizontal hail any day =P

In this situation I have to sit in the shade with a parasol to ensure double sun protection. Why was I cursed with this allergy to sun cream?

Here are my shoes:

Why yes I do add lace trim to all my converse...Doesn't everyone? The red bows are just for today though.
I love the star fishnets too- I got from from my local Blue Banana, but they don't seem to sell those exact ones on the website.

My dress is from another local shop called M Butterfly; they don't appear to have a website. I got this 2 years ago in the sale, for 15 quid =] It's probably the only thing I own with so much pattern on it but I think it's cute!

The parasol is actually an umbrella but that just makes it multi-purpose right?
I got it at the clothes show last year for a fiver =] yay frills!

So do you think this overload of starry print is a sign of heat induced mental instability?

Monday 21 May 2012

a crafty weekend and a business idea

I went out on Friday night with some uni friends and somehow managed to stay out until 4am dancing, despite the fact we'd met at 4pm intending to have a 'quiet dinner'...

Consequently I didn't feel all that well on Saturday, especially as I seemed to have gotten a cold from somewhere during the previous night.

So instead of having a wild time I spent Saturday evening with a friend who was also ill watching films and making toys.

This friend introduced me to the wonders of sock animals a while ago. She showed me how to make sock owls =]. I've made a fair few of these since, including these 4 which I sold at a craft fair:

I was hooked. It's such a fun way to make toys- the materials aren't terrible expensive and the only limit is your imagination!

I made this sock dinosaur as a birthday present for a palaeontologist friend of mine:

This weekend I was making more presents. These are birthday presents for 2 other friends. One keeps snakes and the other collects things with moth designs on them:

I'm so happy with how well they turned out! I especially love the gauzey panels in the moth wings! I can't afford to buy expensive presents for my friends at the moment because I'm very poor- but at least these came from the heart.

Speaking of being poor (and believe me I am- now I have to fund my own PhD) I'm considering going into business making and selling things.

Because the dinosaur, moth and snake are all my own designs (I made the patterns myself) I could probably try to sell similar ones on Etsy. Do you think  anyone would buy them?

I'm also considering making kits, with a pattern, instructions and all the materials you need so that people can make their own sock animals from my designs. Do you guys think this is a good idea?

Friday 18 May 2012

Another outfit post

This is an outfit from a couple of days ago:

I think it looks like what the Monster High uniform would look like (if they had one) or a uniform for Gothic Charm School (although it's entirely the wrong shade of pink for the Lady of the Manners!).

What I'm wearing:

Pink skull pattern polo shirt: Criminal Damage, I actually donated this at a clothes swap and my friend's sister had it for 2 years- but when she couldn't fit into it any more (due to the size of her stupendous bosoms), she gave it to my friend; who cut it up for fabric. I'd been thinking about the top, wondering if the friend still wore it and if she'd let me have it back, but asked literally a day too late! What you see here is all that's left; the top half! I stitched it into a black vest top and added some lace to the sleeves (I might post a tutorial on this at some point).

Black jacket: Miss Selfridge. It was a birthday present last year.

Black Skirt: made be me (see here)

Bat brooch: from my Mum, who brought it in Whitby. She meant to give it me at Christmas, but forgot and so I got it in March =P

Tuesday 15 May 2012

A pirate inspired outfit

I love Steampunk, I'm a member of the Brassgoggles forum and I've been to a couple of local events. I've always found everyone in the community to be really welcoming and friendly. So it's not really surprising that every now and again I wear something that (at least to me) evokes a steam-y feel.

Last week I wore this:

The breeches were originally New Look black jeans. They faded horribly after about 4 washes and then I spilled bleach down them whilst cleaning the bathroom, so I modded them for a pirate club-night I went to. I simply cut the bottom part off, used some of the denim to make 'channels' and threaded ribbon through:

Sorry for the poor quality pictures- the mirror was dusty (we're decorating at the moment) and I didn't realise!

Anyway, I loved them so much that I carried on wearing them!

Here I teamed them with a military inspired cardigan and my octopus necklace for a bit of naval flair. The tie-dye top style I got from the charity shop  for 3 quid, yay!

And just in case you wondered what I look like as an air-ship pirate, here I am on stage in the fancy dress competition, with my friend (in the very fine over-knee boots). We didn't win, the girl in the tutu can do the splits...

Never again will I humiliate myself in this manner, not even for free rum!

However all this does remind me how much I miss having all that hair...sigh. I have to remind myself that it's gone to a good cause!

Sunday 13 May 2012

My Most Prized Possession

I've been following Le Professeur Gothique's Monthly Homework assignments for a while, but somehow something has prevented me from turning in any homework on time until now.

This month's assignment was really easy for me, the answer was obvious, because although I have a lot of stuff, clothes and books galore, most of those things are replaceable.

The item that I would grab in the event of a fire, flood, horde of zombie etc is more than an object to me, she's someone very special.

Her name is Sandy:

She's a miniature teddy bear. I brought her in a sea-side gift shop when I was 8 for 99p. Since then she has been almost everywhere with me. Sure she's a little grubby (although she does get  regularly washed; I stitch her into the corner of a pillow-case for safety before putting her in the washing machine, twice a year), a bit frayed (see the little hole in her foot?) and her original jacket fell apart years ago (and all of her limbs have had to be re-attached at least once), but she's my friend. She's brought me a great deal of luck over the years (I still sit her on the desk when I do exams) and I'd never be able to replace her.

If I had more time? I'd grab my laptop because having to re-write my thesis would be a dreadful experience!

Things that made me happy in the last 3 days:

1. The computer issues I had were caused by a faulty charger; the computer itself is fine. Luckily I had a spare charger!

2. The feedback on the 8,000 words I submitted to be read by my advisor (who has ignored me all year and didn't replied to my emails) was actually good. It ended with the phase 'could easily achieve doctoral standard'!

3. The panel agreed with him! I'm now unoffically a PhD student! =] =] =] =]

4. After the panel I went to see some friends who had just finished their exams. We've arranged to celebrate next week. I'll finally get to see the Avenger's movie!

5. My journey to York for the conference went really smoothly. I even got some work done on the train.

6. When I arrived in York there was a rainbow in the sky. Seemed like a very good omen!

7. I got to see York Minster with the last rays of sun reflecting off its windows and no tourists anywhere in sight.

8. I met the other people attending the conference in a pub just behind where I stood to take that picture. They were all really nice and interesting to talk to.

9. We went for dinner at Ask Italian and it was really good food. Also the building is beautiful.

10.The conference itself was great and I learned a lot. I made a tonne of notes and got a lot of ideas for my thesis.

11. My mum met me in York. It was nice to see her and she gave me this incredible Victorian mourning brooch:

The panel in the middle is difficult to photograph but it contains woven hair. This was a lock of hair from the person who had died, worn in order to remember them. The surround is made out of Jet, which was used for mourning jewellery because it's black.
Victorian rules for mourning were very strict (at least among the upper classes). A widow had to wear mourning for 2 years,'full mourning' included a veil and dresses made of crepe (because it was black and lustreless- shiny fabric was not appropriate for mourning). Towards the end of the 2nd year it was acceptable to wear 'light mourning', which could include grey and lilac as well as black. During the period of mourning it was seen as disrespectful to attend public events.
The amount of time for mourning was set; 2 years for husband/wife, 1 year for parent/child, 3 months for other relative (e.g. uncle, aunt, cousin).
Anyone wishing for more information about mourning jewellery should check out this book here. This one has useful information about mourning customs.

12. I saw Dark shadows yesterday with a friend. I actually quite enjoyed it, because its funny and silly and the blood is so fake (I'm petrified of real blood). Not the best film ever but entertaining enough. I haven't seen the TV series, which probably helped me enjoy the film!

Thursday 3 May 2012

My life in pictures

I’ve been going through my computer backing up files in case I have to take it to a repair shop. I stumbled across a load of old pictures on my portable hard-drive and thought you guys might find them amusing.

Here’s a time line of me over the last 10 years:

This was my 12th birthday:

Age 13 on a school trip to Germany:

Then when I was 14, I finally persuaded my mum to let me get rid of the dreadful fringe.
Here I am at the local under 18’s rock club, with that awkward ‘I’m growing out my hair’ thing going on. 

At 15 I started doing silly things with my make-up, just look at the baby-bat doodles:

This is one of only 2 times in my life that I wore black lipstick. It really doesn’t suit me!

I started to play bass. I was in a band with my best-friend Pip. We 'broke-up' because we couldn't find a guitarist!

I also got my first boyfriend. I’m really just posting this ‘cause I miss my trench-coat. Also the height difference still amuses me!

Here is me on my 16th birthday, I look surprisingly cheerful considering I was suffering my first really bad hangover.

did a lot of drinking at 16…I’m still remembered as ‘Martini Girl’ by my friend's mum because I drank all all her Martini at new year, as can be seen in this picture. The guy with me is the boyfriend I gave the trench-coat to; he’d been wearing it for 3 months and stretched the shoulders so much it didn't fit me any more!

This is me at Prom with the only other ‘Goth’ in my girl’s school of over 2000 pupils.

Age 17:

This was my halloween costume =]

This was the first outing of my top hat:

Age 18:

First glass of absinthe.

Salsa night in fresher's week:

Age 19:
I'd just made that chocker =] I still wear it but I've had to glue the cameo back on 4 times =P

Age 20:

This picture was actually taken at Ann Summer's night at our local rock club about 10 minutes before I met Ash (the lovely boyfriend).


This is what I wore to Ash sister’s wedding. See, I didn’t wear ALL black =P Dark blue is a summer colour, right?

Graduation day with the other people from my course:

And finally a recent picture taken by my Dad in the woods:.

I hope you enjoyed this little trip down my memory lane!

Wednesday 2 May 2012

I might be gone some time...

Heya everyone, I'm sorry I've not been posting for a few days I'm having some technical difficulties (my laptop keeps turning itself off at random...).

I'm also pretty busy at the moment with uni fieldwork and my PhD upgrade panel is looming (argghhh)

Whilst I'm trying to get my computer problems fixed I'm going to be working on my blog ideas on paper.

As a stop-gap here's a little outfit post for you all. This is what I wore for the Post-Gradate colloquium at Uni last week. I cut my head out of the picture because I was having a really bad skin day!

What do you guys think? Professional enough? Too obviously 'spooky'? I'm trying to find something suitable to wear for my upgrade panel so that I can be taken seriously...