Friday, 22 January 2010

Review: Rich orange and chocolate fudge.

I admit it's hard to get excited about fudge. It's usually associated with seaside holiday treats, or something your nan keeps in the car for long road journeys. I have quite a specific memory of fudge; every other week my mum would take me to the Friday market and we'd buy a pack from the Women's instuitute cake stall. It was handmade vanilla fudge, made by a lady called Mary, was sickly sweet and the lasting memory I have of it is a gritty sugar finish that was always that little too sickly.

Then, a few years ago I visited York on a weekend break with friends, and we stumbled over what I believe still is, the quaintest, most lovely shop I have ever visited: Jim Garrahy's Fudge Kitchen - link to the website here. The fudge kitchen handmakes it's fudge using a recipe that dates back to 1830, they have a range of wonderful flavours, and FYI if ever visiting they are more than happy for you to taste test them!

Now imagine my utter joy this morning when the postman dropped off a package from Lee, creator of the excellent chocolate review blog, link here, containing a full sized slab of rich chocolate and orange fudge.


And after my housemates getting hold of it...

Now, just to clarify I only had a very small amount myself! This stuff is seriously sweet a little goes a long way, but living with three guys they lobbed off huge chunks, and are now sitting on our sofa feeling rather full.

So let's get down to the best bit, taste test time.

According to the fudge kitchen website...

"when you bite into the outer crust, you’ll experience a mouth-watering soft chocolate fudge centre, with a fruity orange taste to savour."

And according to me...

The first thing you notice is the texture; it's like cutting through butter. As soon as it rests on your tounge a wave of fresh orange passes over your taste buds, then quickly followed by the dark chocolate, as the two meet they envelop into a pure taste sensation.

This is unlike any other fudge you will have tasted. It's wonderful smooth and creamy, and there is no artifical aftertaste or gritty sugary sensation. The high quality ingredients and handmade, loving process shines through in the flavour. As soon as it hits your tongue you are powerless to let it take over; you don't talk, don't chew, or think of anything else. Then, once it's gone you are left with a feeling of pure, well, 'wow'.
Lee puts it beautifully when he says this fudge "Consumes you...Its difficult to explain but literally it melts to hug every part of your mouth in all consuming delight."
I want to make it clear here that I have not been asked in any way to promote the fudge kitchen, but as I happen to be aware of it I have no qualms with making the point of how good it is! I have ordered from them offline once before, I brought a selection box which costs £14.99 filled with the double chocolate, caramel chocolate, vanilla and strawberries and cream flavours. Each of course, was as delicious as the next. I would say however only buy offline if you are buying something as a gift, or something to share between friends. I ordered offline because me and my previous housemates decided it would be a lovely treat to celebrate finishing our exams, of which it was :-)
I would like to thank Lee for letting me review this (still can't believe he sent me a whole slab!) and if you are like me, a chocoholic, then do check out his chocolate review blog. He clearly has a passion for the subject and an excellent palette.

On a slightly ironic sidenote, I'm going to be a late started to the lovely Cat's weight loss challenge. I would like this year to finally be the time I slip back into my size 10 jeans (which after having a very odd eating pattern during these exams, I am very close to doing so!) and I also think it's about time I started getting fit and healthy, and this seems like a great way to do so. Why do I mention this here? Well I'm actually a very keen cook, so plan on posting some recipes, food inspiration and perhaps the odd cooking video in the ear future.

On that note I must get off and continue with revision. Leave me a comment telling me what you thought of my reiew, and Lee's blog. Have you tried anything from the fudge kitchen before?


P.S I'm really very sorry if I have disrupted anyones diet plans!

Thursday, 21 January 2010

Grace under pressure.

I have exams this week. Finals. I'm pretty much screwed already considering my shitty semester and lack of motivation/laziness when it comes to revision. I have a bad case of third year blues. But nonetheless I'm giving it a final push, and shall probably be away for a week and a bit as after I finish I'm off to Dublin for a much deserved long weekend away.

As a little post exam treat to myself (not that I deserve it) I am planning on picking up a little something special. I spied this little beauty of a polish just a moment ago on Donna and Nadaz's blog, which I reccommend you go check out here now. Go do it!

Every girl needs a little chanel (granted I can only afford a nail polish) in her life.

To all those also suffering with the dreaded exam fever, I wish you good luck. If you are feeling stressed, low or pretty shit about the whole process (which I certainly am) then have a little listen to this glorious elbow track to uplift you.


Tuesday, 19 January 2010

Review: Nude cleansing oil.

The other day I decided I needed a cleansing oil. I've seen quite a few posts of late raving about Shu Uemura’s and MAC's versions to name a few, but picked up NUDE's version after the lovely Mizzworthy mentioned on twitter that it was half price on spaceNK. It also happens to be made from completely natural ingredients (no mineral oil here, officer) infact the whole NUDE range don't contain any of the following nasties:  

parabens, sulphates, PEGs, TEA, DEA, propylene glycol, phthalates, GMO, mineral oil and silicones.

Not bad, eh.

The oil itself comes in a sexy little bottle (I seem to remember there was a court case with stella Mccarthy over packaging, either way I think it's very sleek and stylish). To use just pump a coule of squirts, rub into dry skin so it lathers up into a milky liquid, then rinse. Simples.

The idea of a cleansing oil is to remove make up effortlessly and leave skin super soft. So you ask me, does it do either? Well, yes and, yes.

I'm yet to use it on any heavy make up, but my usual mascara and wee flick of bobbi brown gel eyeliner (review to come soon) is gently swept away with 2 pumps, and my skin is left feeling as soft as a babys bottom. 1 pump would probably suffice on a non-make up day (like that happens...) and because it's so light I don't follow with another cleasnser (however I imagine if I was trying to remove heavy make up I would probably need to) -I simply tone and moisturise.

The only downside I have with this product is the heavy oilve oil-like smell that comes with it. I'm not overly fussed by it, but at the same time it doesn't exactly tickle the senses.

So in conclusion I am pretty satisifed with this product, I am tempted to try the MAC cleanse off oil once this is finished, because paying £28 for 200ml of oil kinda scares me a little. Yet I fully recommend this cleansing oil to anyone who is suffering from dry and slighly sensitive skin this winter.

Price: £28 (although still half prce on
Quantity: 200ml
Repurchase: Likely. Certainly if another half price offer was on!
Perfect for: Those with sensitive, dry skin, who want something gentle, light and effective.


Monday, 18 January 2010

Bag envy: Mulberry Alexa.

 "Hi, I'm Alexa Chung, yeah I'm Vogue's best dressed female of 2009, a model, presenter, oh and have a lush boyfriend (did I mention he's in one of the most successful UK bands of the 21st century?). Yeah so Mulberry like totally designed a bag inspired by little old me, yeah life's pretty cool right now..."

I am so in love with this bag its unreal. I mean I like the Mulberry bayswater, it's such a classic, but this is like it's younger, more effortless cousin. It's got that used, school satchel charm about it. If that even exists.

It comes in two styles, a lepoard print (which is already sold out on the Mulberry site) and then this classic leather style - which is much more my cup of tea. There's something very old-school British about this design, it's ever so slightly Solane Square but with a cheeky school-girl kinda egde. Urg I'm so totally in love. Unfortunately it's £795, so unless I sell a kidney before it's released I don't think I will get anywhere close to owning it. But A girl can always dream.

However I can't be all doom and gloom, t'other week I did pick up this little satchel-type bag from ASOS,

Yeah ok, so it's no Mulberry, but it was £32, is big enough to hold my uni folders and has plenty of added pockets to store all my bits and bobs.

And if I had the money (and figure) heres what I'd ideally wear it with:

Tell me, what's your 'it' bag this season?


Sunday, 17 January 2010

Human rights, moral responsibility.

Article 1 of the human rights doctrine:

"All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood."

Article 3.

"Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person."

Article 5.

"No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment."

Article 25.

"Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and medical care and necessary social services, and the right to security in the event of unemployment, sickness, disability, widowhood, old age or other lack of livelihood in circumstances beyond his control."
Souce from:

Gemma has set up a justgiving account where you can donate towards the disasters emergency committee, a charity which 'unites the leading independent Humanitarian Agencies in the UK in their efforts to maximise income from the British Public to mount an effective humanitarian response to major disasters overseas.'

To donate please visit - you can donate through your debit/credit card or through paypal.


Saturday, 16 January 2010

Tattoo today, tattoo tomorrow.

Tattoo inspration.

I have been thinking of getting a tattoo for a while, I know exactly what I want; a quote from William Blake's poem 'London'

The quote reads: 'The mind-forg'd manacles I hear.' (final line of second stanza).

I think I want it in Blake's style of handwriting, below is an image of one of the few slates he originally transcribed it to. I'm not sure where it would look best, I did think along my foot, but I'm now leaning towards having it along my upper body. What do you guys think?

Tell me your tattoo stories or inspiration.

Friday, 15 January 2010

The best of...2009, duh.

Ok, ok so I'm behind on this. Can we blame exams? The weather? The last episode of Gavin and Stacey? Alright fine, I've been lazy. But I felt it would be a good idea to highlight some key products that have saved me throughout the year.

MAC nail paint in cool reserve.

This was limited edition released with the fall/winter collection. I am more than halfway through using this, which never happens with me. It's a beautiful dirty grey lavender and it just looks stunning on. The formulation is lovely, as this is my first MAC nail polish and it has tempted me to buy more. The only thing that worries me is that they won't re-lease this again for a while, cos it'll be a sad day when this is finished.

MAC unbasic white starflash shadow.

Yes, another limited edition purchase, this time from the love that look collection. I adore this shade for the inner corner, if I'm on a night out I always pop it on. This is my first and only starflash shadow, and I really do love the creamy, pigmented texture. I shall certainly be buying more when they are next released.

Bobbi brown skin foundation.

Yes, I know I talk about this stuff a lot. But seriously, it's the only foundation that I have ever repurchased (in fact I have just ordered my 3rd pot!). The coverage isn't fantastic but for everyday wear it blends beatuifully into my skin and the colour range is just fantastic, and of course in my case this is the only brand with a shade light enough to match my skintone! Hallileuigh!

 Kerastase resistance range.

A few months ago now I had a hair dye disaster. I went from blonde to brown, I had to put red in before the brown as I had bleached sections, and the result was very dark, very damaged hair. I was distraught and there was nothing the hairdresser could do except pack me off with these horrifcally expensive products, which is turn, saved my hair. I will never go back to high street hair products now, my hair is in such a wonderful condition.

Illamasqua eyeliner pencil - Sophie.

I have mixed emotions towards gel eyeliners. I have only tried MAC and sleek, but get a bit fed up with them drying out, looking cakey and being a bugger to apply. However the illamaqua pencil is one I reach to automatically when I fancy breaking out the liner. It's easy to work with, the colour is lovely and rich and it blends like a dream. Best eye liner pencil I am yet to try, hands down.

Benefit dandelion blush.

This is my fail safe blush. MAC well dressed comes a close second, but the cute packaging and lovely fresh smell seals the deal to this one. Because of my light skintone and rosacea I don't need too much in the way of blush, this isso fine and gentle I can get away with looking healthy, and not over-done.

Maybelline colassal volume mascara.

I got this at the garnier event and have since repurchased. I have been trying out the vibrating mascara thingy of late, but when that magically dissappeaed off the face of the planet I went back to colossal, and was reunited with an old friend (aww). As much as I hate the packagaing you can't deny this is a darn fine mascara, builds length, adds volume and is very nicely pigmented.

Thursday, 14 January 2010

NOTD - Illamasqua rampage


My terrible application aside, this picture unfortunately doesn't do this nail polish justice. It's a beautiful rich sea-weed green, no shimmer or sparkle. I quite often find I want something dramatic on my nails, that isn't as harsh as black, for everyday wear. Eyeko has a very dark blue/purple 'vamp' polish that almost fits the bill, but I just find this colour a little more unusual.

I own two illamaqua nail polishes, this and baptiste. At the price (£12) they ain't cheap, and it makes me squirm somewhat when I think of it, but for me they do have some key colours that are so stand out it justifies the price tag. Added to this application is a dream, dries quickly, last for ages and you get plenty for your moneys worth.

Speaking of which,have you seen the colours for the S/S 2010 collection? I can haz now plz?

I am dying to try the one on the far right, caress. Any you would like to try?


Operation beautiful.

When I saw Ellie's post earlier I had one of those 'awwww' moments. Operation beautiful is about women as a community reminding ourselves (as we have a habit of forgetting) that we are all beautiful just the way we are.

The idea is to post notes in public places for people to find, reminding women of this small fact. I know it's a wee bit cheesy, and to the more synical, vomit inducing. But I think it is a very sweet idea, and plan on taking some post it notes and a pen to uni with me in the next couple of weeks :-)

Would any of you guys ever get involved with a community project like this? What would you think if you saw one of these notes lying around?


Wednesday, 13 January 2010

Best. Shoes. Evar.

So over the last few weeks a few things have happened, I turned 21, welcomed the new decade in an alcoholic stupor, came back to uni and started stressing about my impending exams of dooooooom.

Now, like most students, I have been making the most of my procrastination. Seeing as I still can't leave the house for fear of landing flat on my arse and never getting over the humilation, I have been doing what a girl who can now remember her debit card details off by heart does; online shopping. Which has resulted in me owning, amoungst many other things, what I declare to be the most awesome shoes known to man, ladies and gents, I give you the clarks originals desert boot:

How amazing!? These are part of the clarks originals collection, the print is called 'liberty print'. There are 6 designs in total, each representing a different decade to celebrate clarks 60th anniversary. Now these RRP at around the £80 mark, but I found them at with 30% off. Unfortunately these seem to be out of stock in most places, clearly I am behind on the trend :-) but have spied them for sale on asos. I'm just saying.

As I also mentioned earlier, I turned 21 just before xmas, and fancied showing off my little bit of 'bling' that I recieved.

Why hello, Mr Jacobs. I had been lusting after this watch for ages, but couldn't seem find it anywhere in the UK, luckily Manchester's branch of House of Frasier came up trumps, and my lovely mumsie nabbed the last one in stock for me. I did try the micheal kors watches, but as I have a small wrist they just looked too chunky. Wheras this is a beautiful fit.

I hope everyone is having a wonderful 2009 so far, goos luck to all those with uni, a-level or GCSE's. It's giving me great strength knowing these are the final set of January exams I have to go through!