and feeling very fancy indeed...

If you had of told Liv of 2011- the one writing blog posts from her sixth form common room, posting outfit photos from her grubby back garden wall (which has now been painted, FYI) and worrying about UCAS applications, that in five years she'd be invited to stay at The Dorchester (definitely not a time for a blasé 'casual' here)- she'd have probably rolled her eyes and said 'look, we're not doing creative writing anymore lol' (which is teenage English Lit student speak for 'I don't believe you').

As I was checking Facebook the other day, I realised it was exactly 5 years ago since I was celebrating my 18th birthday at The Dorchester with afternoon tea with my mum. Things were incredibly different at this time (and things had also been difficult)- so being able to celebrate a special birthday somewhere so amazing was the perfect treat and escape from things. Five years on and my mum and I found ourselves in the same plush Parlour sipping sugary Earl Grey and dousing scones in jam once again- it's funny how things work out isn't it? With a bedroom at the hotel promised for the evening, as well as a spa appointment and dinner at the restaurant- it a truly special (and surreal) staycation and the perfect way to spend a girlie afternoon (even if we'd just got our nails did this gal would have been happy).



The bedroom was everything out of my Sophia-Coppola inspired dreams and more. Any bed that has a canopy feels only suitable for a queen, and with fluffy slippers next to the bed and our own dining area (which I insisted we unnecessarily take advantage of)- it was undoubtably one of the most special rooms I've had the pleasure of resting my head (although I would have quite happily stayed up and soaked it all in until the early hours too). Naturally we put on The Addams family to mark the occasion.

With the following morning spent with breakfast in bed (well, on a fancy table near the bed)- we popped on our dressing gowns (the first rule of any hotel stay and tucked in to berries, eggs, granola and juice. Let's just say if every Monday started like that I wouldn't protest too much...


Okay- so a night at The Dorchester is certainly a one off special occasion (that I doubt I'll be fortunate enough to repeat any time soon)- but if you are in London and in search of the perfect afternoon escape, I can whole heartedly recommend their classic British afternoon tea (and perhaps a cheeky manicure too if you're feeling particularly plush)! When in London after all...

Many thanks to The Dorchester for having us for the evening!


x

(Dress: New Look, Shoes: ASOS, Bag: Michael Kors, Ring: Hello October for Mejuri (#proud)

It's only taken until the middle of July, but I think we can nearly say (well, this week anyway)- that we've kindly been offered a slice of summer (anything over twenty degrees in my book anyway). It was only after I put this dress on and flip flops (optimistic I know) that I realised it was finally ~bare legs weather~, so Joe and I hopped on the Victoria line (not a top recommendation for a hot day) and headed north to snap some pictures.



Now- the dress. Although I'm sure it could fool even the savviest online shopper into questioning it was Reformation (but y'know, sans customs charges) this little midi is straight from New Look- somewhere I've been paying close attention to this summer as they have some serious gems online. Although I was initially a little wary of it's dipped neckline, with it's modest length and a trick of tape (ahem)- I think we're sorted, just to ensure the weather stays warm, ya hear me UK?



x
Because a girl's gotta get her sunshine somehow...

It's inevitable that when I'm not wearing make up someone will pass comment on how 'pale' or 'sleepy' I'm looking. Unfortunately I'm not the kind of girl that has naturally sun kissed, glowing skin- but more the look of 'Hey! Have you been up watching Netflix all night' (to which indeed, the answer is probably yes). Either way, that's why products like these were invented- the give pasty Purvis over here a little life! So after trying and testing endless bronzers and non-intimidating contour kits (that prove that even a heavy handed pale gal like me can do it)- I thought I'd pop them all in one place to share!

So, first things first- the bronzers! As well as my ongoing love for Guerlain's Terracotta (which I wax lyrical about)- I've also recently started turning to one of YSL's new beautiful bronzing stones, which is a slightly lighter version (and perfect for if you're doing a darker lip too). The Tom Ford Terra bronzer has been in my collection for well over a year now, and is my total staple when it comes to adding a perfect matte colour to an otherwise flat base...

Saying that, if you are after something loose, I also love the Inika Mineral Bronzer which you can mix in with moisturiser for a slight tint too (plus it's vegan and 100% natural which is great)! Finally if all of the above sound a bit intimidating, the NudeStix bronzing stick is totally failsafe and means you can pretty much draw on your contour before blending out (meaning there's very little room for error, huzzah!




Finally, let's talk palettes! There's three varied sets that I can't get enough of when it comes to the ol' bronze and contour. The first is this Smashbox number. This was the first palette I ever picked up to contour with (when the very word was just a twinkle in Kim Kardashian's eye)- and since then it's been my go-to for all things shading. It's incredibly pigmented (much like my other much-loved C. Tilbs option)- but is super easily blended and gives incredible definition for anyone new, or more familiar to contouring. In terms of eye make up- when I'm feeling something a little more defined and smokey to match, I've been loving Ms. Burr's new eye palette in Birthday Suit which is the perfect mix of more pigmented mattes and sparkly shades too.



x

(Top: ASOS, Jeans: & Other Stories, Shoes: French Connection, Bag: Anya Hindmarch C/O FarFetch)

Photos by Joe Galvin

First things first; if you can read this post without getting that Stereophonics song in your head I salute you. But today we're not here to talk about Kelly Jones and co, but instead statement bags, embracing colour and fooling yourself into thinking you're shooting somewhere as exotic in Mexico (when really you're not much further than a ten minute walk from London Bridge)- but hey! It's July. If I want to embrace rainbow stripes, statement silver and sandals then so be it (just don't watch me tactfully avoid puddles)...

But anyway! The bag! The bag! When it comes to designer items, contrary to many; I like to look for statement pieces. Undeniably they do have to stand the test of time- but pieces with personality, character and something a little bit special about them are the ones I seek out. Although I want to ensure I get wear out of things, I do think you can strike a balance between 'trend pieces' and pieces which will last. Take this bag for example; it's playful, a little novelty- but fills the gap of perfect 'day-to-day' bag- which will also be amazing for evenings and adding a little somethin' somethin' to more simple outfits too. After spotting it on FarFetch (and having been searching for a LSB- little silver bag) for a while, I was smitten and set. Plus, if I want anyone to be wishing me a nice day- it's my bag, right? RIGHT? Paired with one of my favourite Bardot tops (anything with this much colour ultimately adds a little sunshine) and some pale denim (which is the perfect seasonal-denim update)- I felt suitably summery; even if the temperature had a mind of it’s own...




Thank you to FarFetch for working with me on this post


x

MEET OLIVIA

MEET OLIVIA

Hello, you! I'm Olivia, or Liv- a 22 year old girl living in London, spending most of her time blog writing, photo taking, social media updating and occasionally cake baking.

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