Dorothy’s Ruby Slippers necklace

I don’t know about you readers,  but when I was little I remember watching ‘The Wizard of Oz’ and being mesmerised by Dorothy’s Ruby Slippers (a girl’s love for shoes starts early you see…).

Imagine my joy then,  when I came across this beautiful handmade necklace featuring the very same ruby slippers in miniature!!

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This piece is lovingly handmade by Cat of Two Penny Lane jewellery, with the motto of jewellery made for people cleverly disguised as responsible adults : hey that’s me all over!

Cat is offering a special discount to my readers,  so if you’d like to grab yourself one of these beautiful necklaces,  or perhaps something from an alternative fantom I.e Alice in Wonderland, The Hobbit or otherwise, then pay her a visit and use discount code 10percent! (I’m hankering after this particular piece,  which is Bilbo Baggins’ front door on a necklace!!!)

Find her on instagram here or visit her website.

ruby slippers necklace from two penny lane jewellery

ruby slippers necklace from two penny lane jewellery

ruby slippers necklace from two penny lane jewellery

Posted by Thriftybloggeruk!
Want to ask a question? Leave a comment or Email me over at Thriftybloggeruk@outlook.com x

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neon sign "Pho"

What the Pho?

Hello! This one is a bit of a foodie post for you today!

I recently attended a launch event for the Manchester branch of Pho (apparently the dish is pronounced “Fuh”),a Vietnamese street food restaurant which has restaurants in London and Leeds. It was actually my first foray into Vietnamese food, so I was glad to have a seasoned foodie at my side in Roisin of Dromomania blog!

The Restaurant has opened within the iconic Manchester Corn Exchange which nestles between the Manchester Cathedral and listed Tudor pub Sinclairs Oyster Bar. I’m so pleased that this incredible listed Edwardian building, previously used as a trading hub within the powerhouse of the North that it Manchester, is being revived and will be filled with people once more. There’s loads of placed opening where you can go for somewhere to eat, outside of the crazy hubub of the Northern Quarter.

Anyway, back to Pho.

The decor was industrial, with touches of street-style. Filament bulbs, neon signs and simple wooden topped tables and benches,with the odd graffiti art on the walls and exposed pipework- an idea setting for a street food restaurant! We were seated on a long bench and the menu was explained to us by a lovely waitress. Every table is set with a variety of chillli sauces (proceed with caution), Hoisin Sauce and soy.

neon sign "Pho"

Table setting

I ordered;

Starters

Cánh gà – Seasoned, crispy chicken wings served with srirachia &a portion of Prawn Crackers to share.

Verdict : Delicious! I love crispy chicken, and this didn’t disappoint. however it was served with the same sauce that is on the table – a little more inventiveness wouldn’t have gone amiss.

crispy chicken wings at Pho

Mains

Phở đặc biệt – Tiger prawns, tofu & flash fried steak with garlic in beef stock (or some variant of this, as the menus vary from sites!)

my husband's dish - I can't remember what he had!!!
my husband’s dish – I can’t remember what he had!!!

Phở đặc biệt - Tiger prawns, tofu & flash fried steak with garlic in beef stock

Verdict : This was served with a plate of herbs and spices and chilis that I could add at my leisure. I chucked in some mint and chilli, and some of the other herbs. This was a nice touch, as the broth of this dish can be a bit flat. You slurp this with a large wooden laden and chopsticks. I didn’t find this difficult at all, and actually quite fun! There could have been more beef for my taste, and the sauce really lacked seasoning (even with my added herbs!) Fun to eat, though, and tasty nonetheless.

We also ordered a good few sides to sample;

The morning glory went down really well, and was absolutely delicious! I love spinach anyway, and the dressing was divine.

Coffee & Tea

We ordered vietnamese coffee (Cà phê) out of curiosity, as it was served with delicious condensed milk! Actually quite a delicious Pick Me Up!

I also had a lemongrass and Ginger infused tea – a perfect digestif!

Service

Couldn’t really fault it. We were served in a timely manner, and when I asked for extra care to be taken with regards to my peanut allergy, the staff were accommodating and conscientious. I ate happy and safely! We were offered drink refills regularly (fantastic Vietnamese beer by the way!) and the staff were happy to talk through the menu and dishes when asked.

Bia Saigon at Pho

Overall, I had a great time at Pho, and would go again to try different dishes and stick with some favourites! Thank you for having me, Pho!

Dower & Hall bracelet

Dower & Hall Orissa Bracelet

Good Morning lovelies!

Today I want to share with you something a little more luxury than usual- beautiful jewellery from Dower & Hall. The lovely folks at D&H sent me this absolutely beautiful package and I almost didn’t want to open it – how lovely does it look?

Dower & Hall flatlay
I just love the combination of dark Indigo and mint.

The bracelet I chose was from the Orissa bracelet collection – with over 75 possible combinations there’s sure to be a bracelet for every birth stone, favourite colour and taste! Choose your metal (Sterling Silver, 18ct Gold or 18ct Rose Gold) and your stone to create a unique bracelet. I chose Rose Gold and white pearl for a classic look bracelet.

I have to say I wore this bracelet continuously for days after receiving it – it goes with everything I own and adds a classy touch to any outfit! I think it would be paired best with white or blush pink, though!

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It’s truly stunning and an item I am so pleased to have in my collection to wear for special occasions and everyday too!! What combination would you choose?

Find Dower & Hall on Instagram and Twitter!

thank you Dower & Hall!

A special thanks to Dower & Hall for sending me this bracelet. All opinions within this post are my own.

Thrifty Blogger Giveaway – Winner!!

Good morning readers! I’ve not posted in about a week as this week has been taken up by all things House & Home (If you follow me on Instagram you’ll know exactly what I mean!!)

Anyway, A short few weeks ago I posted a giveway prize like nothing I’ve done before… entrants had to follow me on social media and leave me a comment in order to win goodies from Model’s Own, Library of Fragrance UK,Treaclemoon, I Am Fragrance… Phew! plus a couple of other goodies I threw in!

prize

And my winner is…!

BooLauren  creator of this beautiful blog.

Well done Lauren, drop me an email at thriftybloggeruk@outlook.com to let me know where to send it!

Thank you also to all of my entrants with all their kind words of encouragement and support. It’s been a wonderful journey so far, and I aim to continue on and see it through!

Jess

xx

Weddings – Money Saving tips for your Big Day

I probably don’t need to tell you that weddings cost a fortune – believe me, I know! I got married in September last year (Have a nosey here!), and we saved and paid for everything within a year with a bit of help from family along the way.

There are a hundred and one things to pay for, and it all soon adds up. Before you know it, you’ve spent at least £10,000 on one day. ONE DAY! (And to be honest that’s probably being sensible, too). In the year of planning and executing the wedding, my husband and I found ways to save and things to compromise on that kept things within sensible realms of spending, but without necessarily going without.

Forget the Favours

What’s the point in wedding favours anyway? We spend time worrying about it, and then I thought, if I went to a wedding and thought it had cost the lovely couple a fortune just to give me some novelty chocolates I’d scoff down in seconds, I’d feel terrible! Wedding guests are privileged even to be there in the first place, you don’t need to shell out gifts! Which brings me on to…

Trim the Guest List
Composing a guest list can be a tricky thing. By having less people you’ll save money on food and drink, but you might not wish to leave people out. There are many guides out there to help you but my advice would be this – invite who you want to be there. If money is an issue, keep the ceremony & Wedding breakfast small, and invite your wider friend groups to the evening party. If you can’t trim the guest list down, don’t worry, because you could…

Get Creative With the Cake
Forget about the traditional iced 4 tier monstrosity. Simple and rustic Chic is in! Maybe even think about making it yourself (but remember that taking on too much before the big day could end in tears!) or getting one of the chefs in the family to do it. It’ll make a big difference to your budget, and family love to help in whatever way they can when it comes to your special day. My cake was made for me by an Aunt on my husband’s side of the family, and it was delicious! 

triple tier minty goodness!
Fruit cake, chocolate and lemon and poppyseed. Yum!

Make Some of the Decor

There are loads of things you can make to add to the decor yourself, like the bunting. Don’t go out and buy it when you could make it for next to nothing. It’ll take more time, but you’ll have more of a budget to play with! We created a photo wall using string, pegs, and some cute postcards that cost 80p each from Paperchase! Visit your local outlet places as well – we picked up boxes of tealight holders, bunting and luggage labels for our seating tags for outlet prices. We had reams and reams of fairy lights, too!!

photo wall

This also applies when it comes to invitations – my husband designed ours and we got the printed through a contact I had at work for free! If you’re not creative, there are lots of great small companies you can approach to make paper themes wedding invites!

Table flowers can also be covered off with relative inexpensive by saving jam jars for a year and using wild flowers!

Wildflower bouquet
my table centres

Marry Out of Peak Season
Marrying during peak season is nice, but it isn’t essential. Marrying out of peak season, on an unusual day will save you a load of money. Just make sure you let all of your guests know well in advance so they can get the time off work – remember – it’s your day!

Rent Your Outfits
Why buy your wedding outfits when they’re probably only going to sit there forever after never to be used again? This is especially true of ushers and bridesmaids. Rent them instead! You’ll save a fortune on dresses, suits, and shoes. 

I turned to Etsy for some of my bridal accessories, and i didn’t need to compromise on anything – I bought some beautiful things and well within reasonable price!

Ask for Favours Rather Than Gifts


Instead of asking for gifts from your family, ask for favours instead. We never had a wedding list, but close family wanted to know what we wanted as a wedding gift. My mother paid for my dress and my Dad chucked in for the catering! . Usually couples put a poem on their invites, requesting financial help versus gifts – people do understand that picking our your own things is much better and less stressful!

Make your own Playlist
Why get a DJ when you can make your own playlist? You can include songs you know you’ll like, and songs that will get everybody up and dancing. You can even include songs especially for other couples that have attended, or ask for suggestions on your RSVP cards! I spent hours crafting playlists – one for the dinner, one for the first dance, and then a couple of playlists for the evening party! It was fun, personal and I got so many comments from my guests on my epic song choices!

fairy Lights

In short, your mantra should be, “It’s our day”. I can’t stress that enough to people who are planning. Family are important, sure, but your wedding day is a reflection of you and your partner’s personalities, and compromise on your choices should be minimised! If you’re soon to be married, congratulations.

Happily married

Bernese Mountain Dog

Lovingly Handmade handbag Charms by MisHelenEous

Cupcake charms

Hello all!

Very excited to share with you some beautiful and specially made hand-crafted items from the wonderful Mancherster-based MisHelenEous! Mascotted by Helen’s late beautiful border Terrier Whiskey, and now by the adorable puppy Heidi, MisHelenEous is about as British Handmade as British handmade gets. She’s a crafty one this one!

Are you a Radley lover? Ever felt marginalised because although you kinda like Scottie dogs you’ve always been more of a, say, Collie person? Look no further! Helen specialises in crafting bespoke pieces – handbag charms/keyrings of our favourite dog breeds. As a cat lover (and all round general animal lover really) Britain is a nation of dog lovers and we love our pooches than much that their iconography blends easily into our fashion and into our home furnishings!

I chose this Bernese Mountain dog charm, because I of the opinion that the bigger the dog the better – but if Beagles, Welsh Terriers or Chihuahuas are more your bag, she’s got you covered! These would make fantastic gifts for friends and family (sorry to remind you but Christmas is creeping up!)

Bernese Mountain Dog

bernese mountain dog keyring
hungry dog!
burnese Mountain Dog
Have dog, will travel

If dogs aren’t your thing, then surely a GBBO lover would appreciate this adorable cupcake? or perhaps this beautiful hand knitted rose brooch?

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CAKE!!!

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I never tire of saying that supporting small businesses is really important to me – these people are the foundation stone of our economy and of Britishness itself!

If you like what you see, or want to explore her other items (Doggie clothing, bunting and much more) please visit her Etsy shop or contact her on the details below!

misheleneous contact details

OOTD – Hydrangeas in the church yard!

Good afternoon!

It looked a little cool and breezy outside today so I opted for my long sleeve top from Primark –  when the sun is out its actually quite hot! I bought this huge purple-blue hydrangea bloom from an amazing florist in my local shopping centre for £3! It was so beautiful I demanded to have my husband take photographs!

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Where’s it from?
Shoes: Sainsburys
Top & Necklace: both Primark
Handbag: Clarks
Sunglasses: River Island
Lipstick: Raspberry velvet matte rouge edition by Bourjois

Don’t forget to hit follow to keep up to date with my posts!

Xox

Posted by Thriftybloggeruk!
Want to ask a question? Leave a comment or Email me over at Thriftybloggeruk@outlook.com x

The Kitschenette – handmade Jewellery

I stumbled across Kirsty and her amazing shop Kitty’s Kitchenette on Twitter recently and was like,  ‘wow’. Cute, quirky cartoon based drawings turned into actual jewellery you can wear, and in whatever form you wish! Earrings, cufflinks, bracelets, necklaces and brooches!

Now,  I am a huge Gamer Geek to the extent that I obsessively play RPGs (role playing games) for hours – I can lose days if I’m not careful! I get so addicted to the story and absorbed in the characters!

Fallout is one of the universes which I’ve sank days work of game play into, and when I spotted this Nuka Cola bottle cap brooch (the wasteland’s currency, seeing as dollars as virtually worthless in the post apocalyptic 50s USA) I had to have it! Priced at £8 for the brooch and slightly more for a necklace.

Nuka Cola Cap Brooch from The Kitschenette! Nuka Cola Cap Brooch from The Kitschenette! Nuka Cola Cap Brooch from The Kitschenette!

I also couldn’t resist this ‘Raw Stone’ piece as a necklace, though it’d make an awesome brooch too! I just love the style of these designs.

Raw Stone necklace
Raw Stone necklace from the Custom Collection priced at ~£10

Raw Stone necklace

Go and say hello on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, and visit her website too! You can discuss custom designs if there isn’t exactly something you would like!

the kitschenette
the kitschenette

Remember to keep up to date with my posts by following here in wordpress (click the follow button on the right) or on Bloglovin‘!

w7 cosmetics review

w7 Cosmetics Mascara – Dupe Alert!

I’ve posted about why I don’t shop with Benefit anymore before, both on a point of there being better and cheaper alternatives, and because morally I have felt sidelined by their marketing tacts.

This post falls into the former category, as I write about two products from w7 Cosmetics.

I wanted to give credit to the lady who reviewed this and made me want to buy it, but I can’t find her to credit! Whoever you are, thank you!

Finding a great dupe is a great way to save money on your makeup purchasing each month. This Absolute Lashes Mascara cost me £3.25 from eBay and took 2-3 days to arrive, versus £6.95 from the w7 website… if you want to buy it from there, you can shop it here.

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Now in terms of the packaging alone, it’s a great dupe for ‘They’re real… Honest!’ mascara, but what about the brush and the application, I hear you ask?

Well some have taken photos of the brushes side by side which you can look at here, but as I did not wish to part with nearly £20 for a mascara I did not have Benefit’s on hand! From my point of view, the brushes are near identical, lots of bristles but not too close together so the lashes aren’t coated too thickly. It applies as well as Benefit’s too, and i was completely ecstatic with this product for the price – my makeup bag will never go without it!!!

w7 absolute Lashes

w7 absolute Lashes

Now onto the Brow Parlour kit. This was another eBay purchase, at £3.87 inc postage. The packaging is adorable and would make an excellent addition to someone’s Benefit/Soap and Glory collection based on that alone!

Now, I have forked out before for Benefit’s brow products, and they are good don’t get me wrong. But Boot’s 17 range does the best value for money brow kit out there. This Brow Parlour kit just doesn’t quite cut it. The brushes are useless (not to it’s detriment as I never use kit brushes), and the powders don’t transfer as well. The clear brow wax though is actually a pretty good idea. I stuck to using my 17 kit and my Makeup Revolution brow brush.

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Do you have any great dupes you always go back to?

Remember to keep up to date with my posts by following here in wordpress (click the follow button on the right) or on Bloglovin‘!