Monday, April 30, 2012

30 Days of Pinterest: Day 30

Woo! Day 30. I managed to stick with it! I wanted to try today’s methods out on my own kitchen but fortunately it was never too dirty. So when I got the chance to clean someone else’s, I decided I’d try some of the baking soda tips I'd read here and here.

This is what the cooker hob looked like before.


When mixing up the baking soda, I added just enough water to make a thick paste. Then I spread on the hob and left for about 15 minutes before scrubbing off. This was the results!


Now, it does require some elbow grease to get the tough parts off but this has honestly worked better than any other products I’ve used. So when I moved onto cleaning the shower, I decided to try it there. Instead of making a paste, a just sprinkled the baking soda in the shower and scrubbed with a just damp sponge. This was a half way through shot, the right side you can see is nice and clean!


I also used it to unblock the drain, put the baking soda down the drain and followed with some vinegar. The result is a fizzing that helps unclog the drain. I also used it in the sink as well. I still have some cleaning to do so I’m sure I’ll find some more uses for it!

A nice side by side picture!


30 Days of Pinterest: Day 29

I really wasn’t in much of a mood to do anything today but figured I couldn’t give up, what with being so close to the end! I decided to look through my Nails board as it seems like doing my nails is something I’ve really enjoyed from this challenge.

So I remembered I got some sponges in my Essence Marble Mania Nail Art Kit and decided to give some gradient colouring a go. It was the best results but with some practice I think I’d get to like it! I got the inspiration from this website.


A rainbow effect,didn’t really go as planned though!


A gradient pink look. First finger on the left I used the sponge with the nail polish freshly loaded, the other two fingers I didn’t reapply the polish so it looked much lighter and speckledy. Which I liked. In hindsight,I should have put the middle shade on top.


I decided to try it with glitter. I think I like this one the best.

It was interesting, I think I would try it again but with a make up sponge like in the original pin. I think because it’s a ‘denser’ sponge or something it would be better. Have you ever tried it?

Saturday, April 28, 2012

30 Days of Pinterest: Day 28

Today I knew I wanted to bake. And I knew I wanted to use up the bananas I had. I have two recipes pins. The first is by The Novice Chef Blog with her Banana Dream Cake. The second is by The Lady Behind the Curtain with her Caramel Banana Cake Roll. Both look and sound so delicious but when I looked at the ingredients and the methods, I decided I didn’t have some the ingredients and didn’t fancy going to get them. So I decided to make my own cake!


Banana and Butterscotch Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting


2 eggs

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup vegetable oil

2 ripe bananas, mashed

1 cup of plain flour

1/4 teaspoon baking powder

1/8 teaspoon baking soda

Butterscotch sauce (or caramel sauce)


220g Philadephia or any cream cheese, softened

55g butter, softened

125g Icing sugar

Vanilla Essence


1. Preheat oven to 180°C (350°F). In a bowl, whisk the eggs together for about 5 minutes until frothy. Add the sugar and whisk until incorporated.

2. Add the oil and stir to mix. Add the mashed bananas and mix until smooth.

3. Sift in the flour, baking powder and baking soda in 2 or 3 step, folding in with a spatula or wooden spoon until mixed. Add to two pre-greased baking tins and bake for about 10-13 minutes, until the centre is cooked.

4. Allow to cook in to pan for 5 minutes until transferring to cool on a wire rack.

5. To make the icing, mix the cream cheese and butter together until smooth. Add a few drops of vanilla essence and mix in. Finally sift in the icing sugar in steps, stirring with a wooden spoon or spatula to incorporate.

6. To decorate, sandwich the cakes together with some icing (squeeze some butterscotch sauce on the icing before sandwiches together)  and then ice the top of the cake. Decorate with sprinkles (I used caramel flavoured ones) or some slices of dried bananas if you like. You can squeeze some more butterscotch sauce on the top if you like.

Ok, I have no pictures at the moment as I’m rushing to put this together, clean the house, finish eating dinner, get ready for the night and go out! But I will cake pictures tomorrow and edit!

The cake was yummy, not as dense as banana bread but more airy. The icing is slightly tart but it suits the cake and the butterscotch sauce as a bit of more sweetness to the cake. I'd definitely make this again!



Sprinkles close up!


30 Days of Pinterest: Day 27

We’re so close to the end of this 30 Days project! I started following Sorted Foods in Pinterest recently and when they pinned this recipe for a homemade chicken burger, I knew I had to make it before the week was over! I made one for my boyfriend the way it’s described in the video but the one I made for myself was the regular way with egg and flour.


Homemade Chicken Burgers (2 different methods)


Chicken breasts

Red or green pesto (I used green as I had it on hand but in the original recipe they use red) [this is only for pesto burger]

1 bowl with flour in it and 1 other bowl with a whisked egg in it [for the non-pesto ‘classic’ burger]


Salt, pepper and any other seasoning you’d like



1. Place the chicken breast between two pieces of cling film. Using your palm or a rolling pin, flatten on the breast until it is half the original thickness (be careful though because if you are too heavy handed, you will tear holes through the meat).

2. For the pesto burger: Using your hands (or a spoon but hands are better) coat both sides of the chicken breast with pesto. Coat evenly with breadcrumbs. Season with a bit of salt and pepper (I also used a small sprinkling of chilli flakes).

3. For the classic burger: Dip and coat the breast evenly in the flour bowl. Then dig and coat evenly in the egg bowl before transferring to the breadcrumb bowl where you will, yes you guessed right, dip and coat evenly! Season with salt, pepper and any other seasoning of your choice.

4. Place a frying on the heat and add a glug of oil. When the pan is hot enough, add the chicken breast. I think a medium-high heat is best here, not too high though as you might burn the chicken). When that side is nice and golden, flip over and cook the other side. Cook until it has cooked through entirely (I cut mine in half as I wanted to ensure it was cooked properly inside).

5. Serve whichever you want to! With a burger bun, between some nice bread or just on it’s own would be perfectly fine. I served mine with some fresh French Loaf with Edam cheese and ketchup, along with creamy cheese potatoes and sweet corn.


Thursday, April 26, 2012

30 Days of Pinterest: Day 26

I own stacks of make up. LOADS. I love it, but I don’t wear a huge amount of it. In fact, I rarely use it. I don’t really during the day (unless I’m feeling particularly crap about myself then I might lash some on). Even when going out I tend to favour a toned down look.

I also love looking at make up tutorials on YouTube. At times I’ve tried them out but I’m a bit rubbish at it. None the less, I scoured through some of my favourite beauty gurus on YouTube the other day and went on a pinning spree. Today I decided to try out a smokey day time look by Ask Me Makeup. I love all the looks Amy does and I wish she would post more often as the way she films is stunning.

Anyway, here’s my take on that look!


Full face shot with flash


Close up of eye with flash


Close up with no flash


Close up with no flash


No flash

I was impressed with the results. When I first put it on, I thought the black liner was a bit harsh but once blended it’s not so bad. I think a brown would be better for a day time look though. It’s subtle but adds a bit of definition which I like. I also think this look would be easy to bring to an evening look by adding some dramatic liquid liner.

Here’s how to do it!

all numbered

1. As this is a smokey look, I’d suggest doing your eyes first before doing your base, it will help at the end as it can get messy and you won’t have to fix your face.

2. Apply an off white to the entire lid of the eyes. Then apply an eyeshadow base

3. Apply the same off-white just below the eyebrows (1).

4. Apply a light taupe (or a colour a shade or two darker than your natural skin tone) to the crease and on the eyebrow bone (2). Blend well. This step is to add slight definition to the eyes without adding too much colour.

5. Take a nude shimmer of your choice and apply it evenly to the entire lid (3)

6. Using a soft black (or brown) eye pencil, run along your lash line and lower lash line (4). Depending on how dramatic you want the look, you can make the line as thick or as thin as you like. In the video the lower waterline is also lined but I don’t like doing that on myself. Smudge the line outwards with a flat angled brush or a cotton bud to take away any harsh lines. Then to set the liner, run a small bit of matt black along the line.

7. Take the same nude shimmer and run it from the inner corner of your eye to about 3/4 of the way out (so just below the number 2 in the picture) and blend in. This will help take the a bit of the edge of the eye liner and make it blend in a bit more. Do the same with the lower lash line.

8. Using a dark brown, bring it from the outer corner of the eye (where your liner ends) up to the crease and blend inwards for about 1/4 of the eye (5). Make sure it is blended well.

9. Finish your eyes by curling the lashes and applying 1 or 2 layers of mascara (I used black but again I think brown would be good for day time).

10. Apply your base, concealer, a natural blusher and slick neutral lip balm or lip gloss.

And you’re done! And here’s a list of products for anyone interested.

Base- No.7 Beautiful Skin BB Cream in Fair for Normal/Oily Skin

Concealer- Soap and Glory Kick Ass Concealer in Light

Eyeshadow Primer- Catrice Stay On

Off White Shadow (1)- Essence Soft Matt Eyeshadow in 01 Velvet Passion

Taupe Colour (2)- No.7 Aniversary Eye Trio Fabulous 40s (light brown shade)

Nude Shimmer (3)- Sleek iDivine Bad Girl Palette (2nd shade on the top left)

Eyeliner (4)- Opia Eyeliner in Black (Penney’s/Primark)

Matt Black Eyeshadow (4)- MUA in Shade 20 Matt

Darker Brown (5)- No. 7 Anniversary Eye Trio Fabulous 40s (darker brown shade)

Mascara- Maybelline Full n Soft in Black

Blusher- Maybelline Dream Touch Blush in the Peachy Shade (can’t seem to find a shade name or number!)

Highlighter- Benefit High Beam

Bronzer- Essence Bronzing Compact Powder Matt in 02 Love to Be Matt (used to contour a bit)

Lip Gloss- Bourjois Rose Exclusif in 01 (this one changes colour due to the pH of you lips)

30 Days of Pinterest- Day 25

The other day I picked up the Essence Marble Mania Nail Art kit. It contains 1 nail art brush (just what I need!), 2 sponges and 2 wooden sticks. The wooden sticks are used for water marbling nail polish. It’s something I’ve wanted to try for a while and had pinned from Hey, Nice Nails blog. And here’s the results!


Left hand


Right hand

I think it’s a fun idea, I wanted to try out some new colours I had bought during the week so I stuck with a neon theme (instead of trying the pastels again!). The results are very ‘Big Fat Gypsy Wedding’ish! I would try it again but with different colours. Here’s how I did it.

1. Fill a glass or bowl with warm or room temperature water (make sure it’s not too cold or else the nail varnish will seize a bit and it won’t work).

2. Prepare your nails with a base coat that is opaque (I used two thin layers of white but you can use another colour. Though I think white is best as it’s so neutral). It’ll give a better result, help the pattern come out clearer.

3. Tape around your nails (sides and above the cuticles). This will help make clean up a lot easier.

4. Once your ready, open the lids to all the polishes you want to use. It’s better to have all the lids open so you can work faster.

5. Drop the colours in the order you wish in concentric circles (so like creating ripples with a stone in a pond). I used 5 colours but you can use less and repeat a few times. Using the stick (or toothpicks), drag it through the polish to create swirls and designs.

6. Place your nail on top of the water, making sure it’s completely submerged. Wait for 10-20 seconds for the polish to dry (blowing in it will make it happen faster).

7. Using the stick, drag it around the outline of your fingernail to gather it all up (once the polish is dry, it will have the same sort of consistency as that manky milk skin you get when you overheat milk). Take your nail out of the water.

8. Repeat for all the nails. Once dry, remove the tape and top with a topcoat. Clean up around nails with nail varnish remover.

These are my favourites



Here’s the colours I used, in order of what I dropped in first.

Missguided Summer Splash Nail Polish in MissChievious

Essence Colour & Go in Lime Up!

Essence Colour & Go in C’est La Vie!

La Femme Beauty in Ultra Yellow

No. 7 Stay Perfect in Me! Me! Me!

Top coat- Sally Hansen Insta-Dri

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

30 Days of Pinterest: Day 24

There’s always loads of bananas left at my Mother’s house and I used to often use them up as banana bread. When I was there the other day, I noticed there was some that needed using up so I took them home with me. Not wanting to use them for my usual banana bread, I looked through Pinterest for ideas. And found a recipe for Roasted Banana Honey Nut Muffins from Curly Girl Kitchen.


Roasted Banana Honey Nut Muffins


2 ripe bananas

1/2 cup of honey

2 tbsp vegetable oil

1 egg

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 cup plain flour

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp salt

1 tsp cinnamon

1/2 cup chopped walnuts (though the original uses almonds)


1. Preheat oven to 200°C (400°F). Roast the bananas for about 20 minutes. They will go a bit black and mushy inside but that’s ok! It’s supposed to happen. Reduce oven to temperature 180°C (350°F)

2. Leave the bananas to cool until you can handle them. Peel and mash in a bowl. Add the honey, oil, egg and vanilla and whisk to mix together.

3. In a separate bowl, sift together the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon). Add the walnuts too to coat (so they won’t sink to the bottom).

4. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients a few tablespoons at a time and mix until just moistened.

5. Fill into cupcake cases and bake for about 15 minutes. If you decide to make bigger muffins, then bake for about 20 minutes.

6. Allow to cool in pan for 5 minutes before transferring to cool on a wire rack.

You can eat them warm or you can eat them like I did with some chocolate spread!


Testing out my new nail art pens earlier

They’re very moist and the taste is different to the banana bread I usually bake. I’d say they’d be yummy with almonds so next time I think I will make them like that!


Monday, April 23, 2012

30 Days of Pinterest: Day 23

As some of you may know, I love baking. Which often leads to running out of ingredients. And top of that list is often vanilla extract. I’d pinned a ‘How to Make Your Own Vanilla Extract’ by Bethany Actually around Christmas time but had forgotten about it until I ran out of extract at the weekend. While shopping today, I decided instead of buying more I’d just make my own.

pin picture

Here’s what you need:

-A glass bottle (try not to have it too large though as you’ll need more vanilla beans. The above bottle is 200ml which is perfect. If you don’t have a bottle, a glass jar would be handy)

-Vanilla pods (2-3 is about right for 200ml. If you plan on making loads of these or use a lot of vanilla pods, it is much much cheaper to order them online. I have no idea where but I just know this as a fact!)

-Vodka (And for anyone curious, I won that massive bottle above!)

-Knife or scissors to cut vanilla pods

-Funnel (it makes things easier)

1. Make sure you bottle or jar is properly clean before using!

2. Cut the vanilla pods in half. Then slice the halves down the middle to open them up, just stopping short at the end so they are still connected.


3. Put the pods in the bottle. Using the funnel, pour vodka into bottle or jar, making sure the pods are covered.


And absolutely amazing after shot (not!).

4. And then the Waiting Game. Bethany Actually suggests you leave it a month to steep until it turns a dark brown colour. I suggest giving it a shake every few days. From what I can see already, there’s tiny bits and pieces of the pods floating in the vodka. Presuming it’s still there after 30 days, you could probably filter these bits out (using a funnel and kitchen paper).

Also I read somewhere else that you can just top up with vodka so you don’t need to keep remaking it from scratch (can’t remember where I read that,will update if I do find out!). I plan on decanting into an empty vanilla essence bottle I have for easy of use and topping up by that much after.

I’ll take pictures of updates along the way too and a review once it’s finished. Very excited about this, hoping to do lots more infused alcohols this summer!

30 Days of Pinterest: Day 22

Once again I was slacking so I decided to try out a hair style that I might use tomorrow. I went for this simple braided up-do by Oh So Pretty The Diaries. And here’s how it turned out!



I quite like it! And it was easy to do. Here’s how!

1. Tease the top of your hair to give a little volume and then smooth out (this is optional though).

2. Split hair into 3 equal parts. Then split each of those parts into 3 equal parts (so now you have 9 equal parts, A1,A2, A3. B1,B2,B3. C1.C2.C3).

3. Take one of the small parts (for example A1) and plait/braid this. Then plait A1, A2 and A3 together. Secure into place with a clear hair tie or with one the same colour as your hair.

4. Repeat with the B and C sections of the hair. So at the end you will have 3 plaits, which is made up as one smaller plait and 2 unplaited pieces.

5. Loosen out these plaits a bit and then roll up into buns. Secure into place with kirby grips/bobby pins. Spray with hair spray if you wish.

Phew, I hope that makes sense! If not, definitely check the link above where I got the idea, they do a step by step photo guide. I couldn’t do that unfortunately as my boyfriend is playing computer games at the moment! He did say it looks very Heidi-ish.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

30 Days of Pinterest: Day 21

We’ve hit the 3 weeks mark! And I’d thought I’d treat myself to mark that occasion (any excuse really!). I’d seen a recipe last year for Dutch pancakes on Craftster and the other week it popped into my head. So I searched for it and pinned it the blog it came from, The Intermission. I LOVE pancakes and Yorkshire Puddings, so this looked like it was right up alley.


Dutch Oven Pancakes


3 eggs
2 tbsp melted butter + 1 tbsp for pan
1 tbsp sugar
1/2 cup milk (I used full fat but it’s up to you)
1/2 cup plain flour
1/4 tsp vanilla extract (original recipe uses lemon,I preferred vanilla though)
pinch of salt

Icing sugar to serve


1. Grease pan with a little oil (I mean a little too!). Preheat oven and pan at 220°C (425°F).

2. Whisk eggs until light and frothy. Add the milk, butter, sugar, salt and extract and mix.

3. Fold in the flour. The mixture will probably be a bit lumpy.

4. While the pan is hot, remove from the oven and add the butter, swirling to coat the entire pan. Add the batter to the pan and bake for 20 minutes or until golden and puffy.

5. Dust with icing sugar and enjoy start away!


Motion shot!

Keep an eye on the pancake while in the oven (without opening the door if possible) or else it will end up like this!


I got a great shock when I looked in the oven and saw it expanding all over the place! Though I just cut off the sides and ate them, they tasted like Yorkshire Puddings! And while the main pancake part was much more like a dessert.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

30 Days of Pinterest: Day 20

I had good intentions to do something crafty today but it went out the window with being roped into babysitting duty and other last minute plans. So I thought I’d use today for some more visual reasons I use Pinterest: decorating!

What’s amazing about this picture is that it’s someone’s house, not a cafe! I fell in love with it the first time I saw it. (Via Johanna Öst’s Flickr)

This is one way to insure he has sweet dreams every night! (via Supermarket Sarah).

I think this is just genius!! What a great way to store magazines and also create extra seats. (via Apartment Therapy).

A suitcase that’s been turned into a chair! (via

There’s just something I’m drawn to when it comes to bird cages. (via

I have loads of cushions pinned,I just love them. This is one of my current favourites. It by etsy user mybeardedpigeon and they do loads of different map cushions I seriously want them all!

Friday, April 20, 2012

30 Days of Pinterest: Day 19

What I like about Pinterest is that you can pin ideas and recipes, other practical things. But also that you can just pin things purely for visual. One thing I’ve been getting interested in is street art. I don’t mean proper word graffiti but more clever drawings and use of what’s already there. Here are some of my favourites

From Street Art Utopia. I love the use of the drain and the pole, it’s so clever!

From JunkfoodClothing. This one makes me laugh, probably because it’s a pink skeleton!

From Street Art Utopia. So simple yet so clever.

From Street Art Utopia. My inner nerd loves this!

From behance. And this too!

From Junk Food Clothing. I love the textures used here. Knitting graffiti is something I saw a bit when I was in college, I love seeing big projects.

From Street Art Utopia. 3D art like this is amazing! There’s loads more like this, they look so real.

From Street Art Utopia. Picture by mmarsupilami. Art isn’t just painting! I love this giant clothes peg!

I have loads more and I’m still discovering some. That’s why I love Pinterest, so many of these would be still unknown to me if I hadn’t seen them on Pinterest.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

30 Days of Pinterest: Day 18

This one is late as I was trying to do one pin but it wasn’t working out. So I changed to try something else. Originally, I was trying to do nails with a peek-a-boo strip of colour coming through a black overcoat, like this pin from Unfortunately, the tape I was using (Christmas ribbon) just wasn’t working so I grabbed some electrical tape and used the Explosion Tutorial from Nailside as inspiration. And here’s the results!




As you can see, I’m still loving the pastel shades! Maybe I’ll bore of them some day soon…

Here’s the cast of characters:

Pink- Angelica Nail Colour in Sweetie Pie

Yellow- Angelica Nail Colour in Lemoncello

Purple- Angelica Nail Colour in Palma Violet

Blue- Angelica Nail Colour in Skylar

Orange- Catrice Ulitmate Nail Lacquer in MAN, GO Tango mixed with a white to make it slightly pastely.

Black- Wet N Wild in Black Cream

Glitter- Kiss Nail Art Paint in Silver Glitter

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