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    Lifestyle

    Using A Cigarette Case For Eyeshdows

    A few weeks ago I was browsing eBay to see if I could find a bronze or copper repousse jar. I shouldn’t have – I don’t need one, but I wanted five minutes to relax and not think, and looking at pretty things did the trick. This beautiful Japanese cigarette case came up in the listings. It was a complete mistake, but it occurred to me a cigarette case could very easily be re-purposed to be a small and compact eyeshadow case. I found one I liked, bought it, and waited. Oh, and if you want to go down a rabbit hole of stunning but expensive vintage cigarette cases, eBay is the perfect place to do it.

    As it is, I had a small tiny budget, and if I’m going to buy vintage I prefer to do it in my local antique shop so I can check everything works (I’ve been caught out by this so badly in the past). So I bought a non-vintage case.

    My son’s current obsession is to destroy the little makeup I have left. At the moment it’s all – stupidly- laid out in one of my drawers. And it’s a little too much for him to resist. Can’t blame him, it all looks very pretty and shiny! He’s already destroyed two of my eyeshadows – thankfully, none of my favorites. Something needed to be done. So this is what I did.

    You can find me here on Instagram 

    How To

    How I Declutter My Art Supplies

    I’ve decluttered a LOT of my art stuff this year.

    It’s not something I ever thought I would do; my art supplies were my pride and joy, and I had spent many, many years collecting various inks, pens, and papers. But as I started to declutter the rest of my life, I gradually started to look at my art supplies and realize that a lot of it was just me collecting stuff, and not really using it. It started to really bug me.

    In the end, I decluttered my art stuff for two main reasons:

    1.  I wanted to put as much money aside into our house and mortgage. This house needs a LOT of work. When we moved in it had no central heating, the boiler broke a month after. There were (still are) things we need to fix – like the roof – and just a hundred and one little things. I’d rather have the money than items I don’t use.
    2. I’d really started to notice what were the tools I used and what ones I didn’t. I think every artist needs to go through a stage where they experiment with different mediums and styles to figure out what they really like. I’m past that stage now. I know what I like and what I don’t, and most of all I I HATE art supplies going to waste.

    This video isn’t going to help declutter the things which just need to go completely, it’s for the items where you know you use some of them, but not all. It’s a system that’s worked quite well for me, hopefully, you’ll find it useful too.

    You can find me here on Instagram 

    Lifestyle

    Turning Citrus Fruit Into Christmas Decorations

    I’ve been promising to do this video since last year and I had planned on getting this up on YouTube a while ago, but as usual, life got in the way. For today I’ll just be showing how to make the citrus decorations themselves. I was tempted to include the final decorations too in this video but – as you know – I like to keep my videos short and to the point.

    So today, just the decorations and I’ll have another video soon showing how I use what grows around and by my home to make the garlands for Christmas. With these decorations included too, of course.

    You can find me here on Instagram

    Lifestyle

    Can You Use Ash To Clean Jewellery?

    It’s not exactly an age-old question, but it’s something I saw listed in a “uses for wood ash” blog post a while ago, and I’ve been wondering if it worked or not. Our house is heated entirely by our trusty woodburning stove, it’s gloriously efficient and very cozy, but produces a lot of ash.

    Over the last year I’ve been trying to find uses for all the waste in my house. Old clothes, food scraps, craft items etc. So far I have three uses for ash; it’s a fantastic dupe if you don’t have gritting salt, it’s wonderful for the compost heap, and if you keep a kitchen compost caddy, a little bit of ash sprinkled over it each day stops any of those annoying fruit flies infesting your kitchen.

    So today I want to find out if I can find a fourth use for the extra wood ash.

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    Food

    Making (Chocolate) Apple Crisps

    Like I mention in the video, these things are my kryptonite. Especially when they’re smothered in chocolate. Making them is simple, but time-consuming, especially if you do it by hand, and for that reason – and because I make them so regularly – I use a dehydrator and rotating peeler. I make these so often that it was worth it for me to make the whole process faster and easier.

    If you’re only looking to dabble in making these or don’t have any of the tools I’ve mentioned, I’ve written about two other ways you can make them bellow.

    Making them using the Sun:

    Given that I live in the cloudy bleakness that is England, this way of doing it isn’t very reliable. Some years we get nice hot summers, other’s it’s a complete washout. If you live in a country with better sunlight, you will need a baking tray to lay out the apple peels on, and then either a cookie wire tray to raise the apples up off the baking tray, or some parchment paper.

    You could lay the apples on the trays outside to dry in the sun just like that. But the problem is that the underside doesn’t always dry evenly if it’s directly against the tray, and you keep having to rotate each slice until it’s completely dry. This can take several hours sometimes, it makes a long job even longer! If you use a cookie/ sheet to raise it up a little, then – provided the sun gets hot enough – you can just leave them till dry.

    I can’t give you an exact time here till they’re dry, it’ll vary so much from country to country. Just check on it regularly (and be aware that any hungry birds in the area will go for them, along with every insect in the area) and wait till they seem dry and chewy to you). Ideally, you want to sit outside and watch them while you’re doing this. I have had birds make off with a large portion of my apples before. It’s a little heartbreaking when that happens, especially if you’ve spent most of the day peeling the apples by hand.

    Make them using the Oven: 

    This is the method I prefer if I have just a few apples on the verge of going off, and not enough to justify turning the whole dehydrator on. It’s a great way to preserve potentially wasted food, and I like that it heats up the house in the process (my house get’s very cold in winter!)

    Take your apple slices, lay them out on a cookie wire tray, and put that straight into the oven, set at the lowest heat and with the door cracked open. Don’t close the door or you’ll burn the apples.

    Every 15 minutes or so you want to check on the apples. Because the door is open you should be able to tell when they’re getting nice and crispy, but don’t leave it just to your nose to decide. Check on them, and when both sides seem dry but still pliable, they’re done.

    If you want to see your name featured in future videos you can support the channel here 

    How To

    Capsule Makeup Challenge: Halloween – Zombie

    Today in the series I picked the 14th out of my fifteen product limit, a white eyeliner. I still have one more product I can add to my selection for this series, and while I have an idea of what product it will be, I want to wait a while and get at least ten videos into the series before I make that selection. As much as I might be aiming far too high, I really want to see if I can stretch this out to a 100 part series. Yes, I know, maybe a little too ambitious, but I really think it can be done!

    Once Halloween is over I’ll focus on the holidays and get some Christmas and New Years looks included in the series, after that in Spring I want to include around 5 bridal looks. I might even include a tutorial for my own wedding makeup, since I pretty much used these exact same products.

    But for today, I have a Zombie makeup tutorial for you! I have to say, I’m really, really happy with this one. While it is time-consuming – it took me around 1.5 hours to film – it’s really quite simple to do. You don’t need an art degree to follow it, in fact it’s quite forgiving to any kind of mistakes, and it only uses four products in total.

    What’s The Makeup I’m Using In This Challenge:

    1. Klairs BB Cream
    2. Besame Lipstick in Dusty Rose – MUA Lipstick 
    3. Fatale Cosmetics Lipstick in Rita Rouge – MUA Lipstick 
    4. NYX Blush in Taupe
    5. Brown Eyeshadow – Essence Brown Eyeshadow
    6. Black Eyeshadow – MUA Black Eyeshadow
    7. Prism Highlighter
    8. Urban Decay Primer – e.l.f Primer 
    9. Black Lash Glue –
    10. False Lashes
    11. MUA Mascara
    12. Barry M Black Eyeliner
    13. Lilly Lolo Powder (I pressed this myself) in the shade Porcelain – e.l.f Mineral Powder
    (Please note that any Amazon links are affiliate links)

    Above I’ve linked the exact products I’m using on the right, and then dupe/budget versions on the left. Where I haven’t linked an alternative it’s because I haven’t tried a product that’s cheaper than the one I’ve used and that I think is good quality.

    You can find me on Instagram here

    How To

    Minimalist Make Up Challenge – Halloween: Terminator Makeup

    As part of the Minimalist Makeup Challenge, I really wanted to do a few videos just for Halloween featuring the looks that – I think – are classic Halloween looks; the terminator, vampire, skull and a zombie. I don’t know how much of it I’ll be able to film and upload before Halloween, but I’m going to do my best. Maybe if I’m still doing this challenge by next year I’ll have a poll on my channel for which looks people would like to see.

    What’s The Makeup I’m Using In This Challenge:

    1. Klairs BB Cream
    2. Besame Lipstick in Dusty Rose – MUA Lipstick 
    3. Fatale Cosmetics Lipstick in Rita Rouge – MUA Lipstick 
    4. NYX Blush in Taupe
    5. Brown EyeshadowEssence Brown Eyeshadow
    6. Black EyeshadowMUA Black Eyeshadow
    7. Prism Highlighter
    8. Urban Decay Primere.l.f Primer 
    9. Black Lash Glue –
    10. False Lashes
    11. MUA Mascara
    12. Barry M Black Eyeliner
    13. Lilly Lolo Powder (I pressed this myself) in the shade Porcelain – e.l.f Mineral Powder
    (Please note that any Amazon links are affiliate links)

    Above I’ve linked the exact products I’m using on the right, and then dupe/budget versions on the left. Where I haven’t linked an alternative it’s because I haven’t tried a product that’s cheaper than the one I’ve used and that I think is good quality.

    You can find me on Instagram here

    How To

    Soapnuts vs Conkers – What’s The Difference? + Update

    Last year I did a video all about how to use conkers as a washing liquid. Since then I’ve discovered a few things I can do to make the whole process much easier and efficient, it also occurred to me that in my original video I should probably have shown the difference between soap nuts and conkers, so today I will!

    You can find me on Instagram here

    Lifestyle

    What’s In My (Cloth) Nappy Bag

    When I filmed my introduction to cloth nappies video a few months ago I’d planned to do a video all about the nappy bag shortly after. As it is, I’m quite happy I didn’t because I recently made a few changes to the bag by including a small first aid kit, and it’s been a lifesaver!

    What is in the bag:

    (Please note, any Amazon links are affiliate links) 

    • Black Nappy Bag:

    Since I bought this bag (for £40 two years ago) they’ve increased the price to just under £100! As much as I love that bag, there is no way in hell I’d ever have paid £100 for it, so I’ve listed a more reasonable alternative here.

    I know this might be quite a simple video, but I love sharing these little things that I’m happy about in my life.  Putting together things that work well for me, and look lovely, make me very happy. And sharing things that bring me joy, even simple mundane little things, is something I want this channel to be about. So I hope you like this video, and if you have a little one, I’d be interested to see what you have in your nappy bag.

    Anything you think I should add?

    Lifestyle

    Trying Out A Buckwheat Mattresses – Is It Worth The Switch?

    First of all, I’d imagine you’re wondering “what on earth is a buckwheat mattress, and why would you use that over a normal one?”

    Well, for me at least I switched to it for three reasons; First, I really, really hate soft mattresses. They make my back hurt so much that getting up in the morning feels like I’ve had a goat dancing on my spine all night. I’d resorted to sleeping on the floor quite a few times in the past because I could never find a mattress firm enough.

    I’d also noticed that there was something about normal mattresses that really irritated my sinuses. I’d wake up in the morning and my face would feel swollen and stuffy, it was the same kind of reaction I would get if I walked in a very dusty room, or went up into my parent’s attic. I’ve known for years that I don’t handle dust very well, but I was noticing more and more that normal mattresses didn’t agree with me either.

    Lastly, I’ve been slowly trying to move more and more towards buying things that I would want to have rot in my garden. No plastic, no polyester, acrylic, foam, etc. My reasoning for this is that if it’s so toxic that it would kill off the organisms in the compost bin, or damage any food growing in my veggie patch, then I wanted to do my best not to buy it- let alone sleep on it! That part is still a long work in progress, but once I started to look more and more into what conventional mattresses were made of, the less I wanted to sleep on one, let along send it off to a landfill where it would attempt to decompose over the next 500 years.

    So I started looking around for something bio-degradable and, ideally, made in the UK. Eventually, I found a British seller that made buckwheat mattresses and pillows. I took about a year to slowly buy them, the last thing I wanted to do was spend a lot of money and find out they didn’t work for me. And at £200 for the mattress, I couldn’t afford to mess this up. I bought the pillows here, the quilted version of the mattress here, and the tube mattress was purchased here. Please note that Amazon links are affiliate links.

    Two years later, these are my final opinions: