Eurovision Song Contest Fashion Review!

The Eurovision final is honestly up there with Christmas in terms of my favourite days of the year. I love the music, the political voting, the fact we’ll never win… But, more than the music, I really really enjoy the crazy and glamorous costumes of the contestants. I’m going to be recapping some of my favourites. I probably missed loads out but I was drunk last night and my memory is a little fuzzy. Before we start I’d just like to express my anger at the rest of Europe for not giving Britain’s act more points. Usually, I don’t care because I don’t think we put enough of an effort into Eurovision to complain about losing. But this year our song was good and you all know it.

If you hate Eurovision, which I know a lot of people do. This fashion review by the Telegraph may be more to your liking…http://www.telegraph.co.uk/tv/2016/05/14/14-of-the-weirdest-outfits-at-the-eurovision-song-contest-2016/ Go be miserable there.

Let’s start with the winner, Jamala who wore blue trousers with some kind of dress/ cape over them. If I saw it without seeing the whole performance I wouldn’t have liked it, but in context, it is absolutely beautiful. The song is really dark and powerful and it wouldn’t have been as moving if she had been stuck in a gown she couldn’t walk much in. Well done to Jamala & Ukraine for winning I loved the song so much!

Now let’s talk about Iveta Mukuchyan who represented Armenia. I loved this outfit. If victoria secret designed a witch costume it would be this. Very dark & very sexy, it looked absolutely beautiful on her. The staging was perfect too. Very catchy song.

Next up- Croatia. This costume screams Eurovision and gets all the negative attention you’d expect it too. I thought it was beautifully detailed & must have taken the maker hours. I loved the combination of the white mesh and the silver reflective mosaic. It really went with the singer’s overall look.  I just wish she didn’t have those things dangling off her arms they were too distracting. I liked the giant coat thing she was wearing at the beginning more than the dress. The coat was really interesting and I loved the shape. It’s a crazy outfit but this is Eurovision, not a royal wedding and I hate it when they wear plain gowns at Eurovision, YAWN. More sparkle please.

Spain’s entry was Say Yay! by Barei. I hated her song to be honest, it was very current though I can imagine it on the Radio. I thought her outfit was cute & simple. Sequin jersey’s are adorable, very 80’s.

Serbia’s entry “Goodbye (Shelter) really good. It had a very dark subject matter (domestic violence) and it was one of those strong powerful female ballads. The dress she wore was very dark & gothic. There was a lot of leather- look piping over sheer fabric and the way it was placed made it look like armour over a sheer black dress. I thought it was beautiful.

Germany’s Entries costume was… interesting. I personally loved it, I though Jamie-Lee looked cute asf. But, It would definitely look better on a barbie doll. It was obviously very japan inspired and I think that if it were not for the head peice I would love it. the skirt looked so cute and I loved the sleeves of the dress.  This was one of my favourite songs in the competition.

During this re-listen, I think that Bulgaria’s song is probably my favourite. Her look was so edgy and cool. It reminded me a lot of the hunger games, I don’t think she’d look out of place walking down the streets of the Capitol. Seriously, LISTEN TO THE SONG. UGH. SO GOOD. Definitely one of those feel good songs to get ready to.

Let’s talk about Italy’s entries outfit. When I first saw it I thought it was Dolce & Gabbana (my favourite designer) but I’ve had a stalk and I can’t find out. Whatever it is, I don’t know why she would wear it over a plain white tshirt. She looked beautiful anyway. The song was pretty forgetable for me.

Samra, who was representing Azerbaijan, wore a jewelled sheer bodysuit.  It reminds of the Bodysuit britney wore in the Toxic music video. I thought she looked so great!!

That’s all I can really be bothered to talk about for now. I hope you enjoyed this post let me know if you did and I will do more fashion commentary videos for you! Byeee love you x

Practising Things I Suck At: Darts! (tips for people that suck too)

Hello there! Today’s post is somewhat of a lazy make-shift post to hide the fact I’ve had a really unproductive week. It was productive in terms of my reading life, as I finished 4 books, but I haven’t been feeling great so I haven’t made anything. I’m in the process of making a shift dress, which has 4 lovely double pointed darts in them. So far I’ve only altered and cut out the pattern and I’ve been putting off making the thing because of said darts.

Darts are one of those things that I learned for the first time in college, everything in college is done to a deadline so I associate darts with pressure and disappointment. I remember trying them so many times until I was finally told that my wonky, bendy dart “would do.” When you study fashion you learn a weird mix of beginner pattern cutting and sewing, which is why it’s completely possible for me to a bit more comfortable with pattern cutting than with sewing, even though most people master the latter first. In our first week of pattern cutting we were taught how to manipulate a dart into a princess seam and ever since then I have literally never sewn a dart. I would just cut them out of every commercial pattern I did, and a year of sewing later I still can’t sew a dart. It’s embarrassing.

Two days ago I decided to face my fears and dedicate a whole day to practicing them. I cut up an old Betty Boop duvet cover (RIP Betty! </3) and practiced for a few hours. In the whole time, I probably sewed around 40 darts. They still kind of suck, but are definitely a big improvement. I found that after practicing my darts were straighter, flatter at the point, and started and ended where they were supposed to.  I thought I’d share some pictures on here and share a couple of things I learned as a complete beginner.

LOUISE ALICE JAY DARTS START AT POINT

  • Firstly, I learned that I definitely prefer to start sewing at the point of the dart. You kind of have to with double-pointed darts, but with the regular kind they encourage you to start from the raw edge. I practiced both ways but I found that, although my dart aim was eventually quite good, I would still overshoot around 10% of the time no matter how much I practiced if I started at the raw edge.
  • I found that the best way to start sewing the dart is to put the needle right next to the fabric, just above the point, and then twist the hand wheel to get the needle to make a stitch right on the point. I’ve tried to show this in the image above. This usually gave me a dart that didn’t have a pucker at the end.LOUISE ALICE JAY AIM DART
  • In order to get a straight dart I found that you have to kind of aim your stitch line, and then once you start sewing commit to it 100%. Otherwise, the dart will turn out wonky. The best way to aim the dart is to line the end point of the dart up with the needle the best you can, and try to sew in a straight line. After realizing this and practicing it a few times my aim was pretty good. You really do have to have to have faith in your aim though, even if you think it isn’t going to meet the point keep going because it probably will if you’re sewing straight.
  • Instead of back- tacking at the point I learned that you should tie a double knot instead. Otherwise it can look bulky.
  • I still suck at double pointed darts, I’m not entirely sure what the center is supposed to look like. I know it’s not supposed to be a sharp turn but I struggle getting the curve in the exact place if I try to sew it more smoothly. I need a lot more practice with these, although I think that for now I’m good enough at them to make my dress.Here are some pictures of my progress. I am really am pretty happy at the moment and glad I sat down and gave them a try.  As you can see the first dart doesn’t even hit any of the points and is really wonky, but the last is smooth and hits the guidelines I drew perfectly. These are just a small selection of the ones that I sewed. I’m not ashamed to say it took a LOT of practice for me to get them right, they are something that I have always struggled with.

    louise alice jay dart progress

Here are some of the resources that I used to help me learn (contains affiliate links, read disclosure):

  • Alison Smith’s Couture Dressmaking Techniques class on Craftsy- Alison Smith is my pink-haired hero. This class is a little out of my depth but I would still recommend it to any beginner as her extensive expertise of sewing has been so helpful to me. It was with her advice that I tried sewing darts from the tip (which worked best for me) and the information about how to press darts beautifully will no doubt make my projects look so much better. The class is around £40 but wait for a sale (there is always a sale) and you can get it for £20 or less. You might be able to get the same information in her popular book, but I don’t own it, so don’t hold me to that.
  • Reader’s Digest Complete Guide to Sewing – It will become quickly evident on this blog that this is my favourite sewing book. This book has 5 very detailed pages all about sewing darts. It covers basic single point darts, double point contour darts, French darts and gives information about how to sew darts in underlined and interfaced garments. I have the old edition of this book, and you can usually get it on amazon second hand for a few pounds. I got mine for £1 at a boot sale.
  • The Singer Sewing book by Mary Picken– This has a little bit of information about the different placements of darts in garments that I haven’t seen anywhere else. The book was originally published in 1949, so I imagine that I haven’t seen this information before because these dart placements are only seen in vintage patterns. This book is super cheap so I recommend it anyway.

I hope that this post was helpful to anybody who also sucks at darts. I’m still very much a beginner at sewing so I might do a lot more of these posts. I think it’s helpful for me to list things that I have learned/ figured out as a beginner, it will help me do beginners tutorials when I am more advanced. Thanks for reading!

Vintage Craft Supplies & Books Haul!!

This has been the best second-hand haul EVER! Even better than the time I found a Jimmy Choo dress for £5. I am genuinely more excited about these items and I can’t wait to start using them. Today me and my parents went to Abergavenny to look around the market and some camping shops. My parents went without me a week ago and picked up some vintage books for me, they knew I’d love it so much that they took me back and I found so much amazing stuff. I’m going to show you what they got me, as well as what I bought today 😀

My parents bought me these cross stitch books when they first went to Abergavenny market. I don’t actually know how to do it yet but I’ve wanted to learn for a while. I just think that cross stitch is absolutely beautiful. It was my grandmothers favourite past time before her dementia got too bad and I inherited a load of charts from her and I’d love to be able to use them. I’d like to try and incorporate it into garments & accessories I’m making. I’m feeling really inspired by  Dolce and Gabbana right now.

The best book find… was this!

This is a 1946 reprint of a hella ancient sewing book. I knew as soon as I saw the grotty cover and the word “modern” title that I needed it. I love old books about sewing, they never skimp on information and the focus is always on getting the best result. I feel like new sewing books gloss over information to make sewing seem easier than it is. It may encourage beginners to pick up the books, but it won’t encourage them to keep sewing when their projects turn out badly. I had  a quick flip through and I think this is going to be my new favourite sewing book. Not only does it have information about general sewing, its gives guides to drafting different pattern cutting blocks from your measurements. It has a section in the back showing you how to use those blocks to make new clothes out of old. It has a section on mending clothes and making ill-fitting clothes wearable again. I have quite a big collection of sewing books, I’m thinking about doing a post about them. Most of them are vintage but you can usually find them online. Let me know what you guys think?

I found these bags of cross stitch fabric for £5 each, there’s a lot in each bag so it was a bargain. The stall I was looking at also had like 1 million buttons all in cute shapes.  I could have bought hundreds if I was left there but I instead just got a few strips. I’m going to be making some blouses (the Mimi Blouse from Tilly Walnes’ book seems good) and these buttons would be so cute! I also found some tubes of old buttons that I picked up. I don’t really have a lot of buttons lying around so I want to have lots of different ones handy for projects.

LOUISE ALICE JAY BOOKS AND CAMPING It’s not really relevant but I thought I’d mention it anyway. I picked up some new books to read. These three look like fast reads so I picked them up. I also picked up a new poncho and a light for my tent in Mountain Warehouse. Festival season is on the way so I’m gonna be stocking up over the next few weeks. I also ordered a new tent today, my old Vango Ark 200 was fine but I wanted a little more space so I ordered a Vango Ark 300+. If you want to know more about what I take to music festivals I have a list here. 

So that’s everything! It’s been an expensive day :/… let me know if you enjoy these hauls and tell me what other posts you’d like to see if you have any requests. Thanks for reading! x

New Look 6843 Sewing Pattern Review: Navy Floral Skirt

This post contains affiliate links for some of the products used/ mentioned. All opinions are 100% truthful. Please read the disclosure.

Hello! today’s post is a review of the 6843 Skirt pattern by New Look.I chose to make pattern A. I’ve been making this for the past few days and it’s turned out really well and I couldn’t wait to share it with you.

This is the first commercial pattern I have ever used. All of the things I have made in the past have either been made without a pattern, with a basic self-drafted pattern or with an independent pattern with lots of  clear instructions. From what I have heard, commercial patterns have a reputation for being quite vague and confusing for beginners. I would be inclined to agree, but a quick bit of research online or in a sewing book I was never stuck for long and the skirt turned out really well.

I wanted to use this pattern to review the skirt part of Linda Lee’s solo fitting class on Craftsy. I followed all of her instructions to measure myself and compare my measurements to the pattern, and then when I made my fitting tiole, it fit perfectly. This was great really but it meant I couldn’t review the class because I didn’t need to adjust anything. The review will probably be up soon, it just depends on how lucky I am with trousers fitting. I did alter one thing on the pattern however, I prefer my skirts really short (because I’m really short too) so I cut about 15cm off the length. I did this my just freehanding a new line at where I wanted to shorten it too. Here are some pictures of the original pattern and the new pattern I made.

Like I said earlier, I did find the instructions a little vague. I have quite a large collection of vintage craft/ sewing books, and there was one, in particular, I found to be extremely helpful in figuring out what to do. I picked up the Readers Digest Complete Guide to Sewing years ago for £1 in a car boot sale and I honestly am so grateful that I did. I was completely lost about how to attach the waistband, and this book really did save me. A small warning, It’s really big and super intimidating but the amount of information packed inside is crazy.

My only real complaint of this skirt is that it says on the front that takes 1 hour. That’s just not true. The sewing of the skirt goes along very quickly, but you have to slipstitch the entire waistband in place. I don’t know maybe I’m just crap at hand sewing, but i’d say that took me at 45 minutes alone. Don’t get me wrong though, its a simple enough pattern as long as you have other resources to help you. Easy enough for a beginner like me anyway. I love how it turned out, I’m going to make another one in black this week. I’d also like to make version C of this pattern in black too. It’s such a wearable and versatile pattern, definitely worth adding to your collection.

 

Pattern Cutting Supplies Haul

PATTERN ROLLS LOUISE ALICE JAY

Hellooo there, readers. Today we are going to be doing a haul, I only bought 3 things but 2 of them were pretty damn big (and pretty damn expensive). As you may know, if you’ve read my other posts, I’ve decided to teach myself pattern cutting and sewing. I started to learn them when I was studying fashion, and loved them, but hated fashion so I dropped out. I really don’t want to stop learning this though so I’ve invested hundreds in supplies, books & classes in hope that I can continue.

These purchases are from 3 different places. I will start off with the smallest purchase first.

LOUISE ALICE JAY FABRIC SCISSORS  I decided to replace my fabric scissors as my old ones just weren’t cutting well after around 4 years of regular use. I dropped them while I was in college and it made them a bit hard to cut with. Some of my friends didn’t notice a difference, but I definitely did. As well as that when I was in college lots of people used to borrow them and cut all kinds of things with them. These are my ride or die fabric scissors. They cost around £5 but they cut beautifully (if you look after them). My college tutors told me that they were as good as ones they had paid £40-£60 for. I got mine on amazon, and they are listed as (affiliate link) 240mm Stainless Steel Tailoring Scissors.  If you are in any way new to sewing, or just looking for a new pair I would DEFINITELY get these they are brilliant for the price.

 

My next purchase was this 150m roll of pattern cutting paper. I bought it from Home Crafts for £34.99. There are lots of shops online selling these rolls but I went for this one because it had the best price. I also chose this one because the dots & crosses are 2cm apart, whereas lots of others are 2.5cm apart. This means that I could use plain cm grid paper to make quarter scale patterns, and they would be really easy to scale it up onto this pattern paper. My only issue with it was the way it was packaged during delivery. It was only wrapped up in Kraft paper, and some of the paper on the top layer has holes in it. This isn’t too bad, and I can still use the top layers of paper, I just would have preferred it to be wrapped in Bubble Wrap. The delivery was really quick, though, I ordered it on Monday and received it on Wednesday.

My final purchase was this giant 50m roll of Calico from FabricUK . It was expensive, it cost £96 including delivery, but I plan to use it for a lot of things. Firstly if I’m going to be learning to pattern cut I’m going to be getting through this a lot when testing my patterns. I also want to use it to toile commercial patterns to make sure they fit. I also quite like the feel of calico, so I may even dye it and make clothes with it. I plan to get through a lot of this stuff and I think that although £96 seems a lot, this roll will last me years, and save me from wasting lots of other expensive fabric.

So that’s all for now. I may do another post on the resources I’m using to learn pattern cutting soon. If you are interested in learning more about pattern cutting please subscribe because I’m going to be posting a load of reviews of classes & books:D hope this post was helpful! x

ULTIMATE FESTIVAL PACK LIST PART 2: Girls Edition

This post contains amazon associates affiliate links. Please read the disclosure. The products recommended are all products  I use and honestly recommend.

Helloo! Welcome to my ladies festival pack list, similar to my general pack list only with a higher focus on hygiene.

HYGIENE & TOILETRIES

Shewee/ whiz freedom– It depends on the festival but if you’re going to reading I recommend getting these so you don’t have to squat over a metal tank and then still get 50 people’s pee all over the back of your legs. I use the whiz freedom because it’s flexible and easier to aim. Just practice with it first. I was speaking to a girl last year at download who said she’d never use one again because she dropped it mid- pee and weed all over herself at reading festival. This can be avoided by mastering it before you go. The shower is a good place to do this.

Feminine Wipes– you can buy individually wrapped vagisil wipes that are really easy to carry around with you. They are a bit more pricy than buying in a pack but you don’t want to be carrying entire packs of wipes with you to the arena. Really good for freshening up especially if you are on your period.

Pads & Tampons- Periods are really sucky at music festivals but here’s what works for me. Wear a pad all day, and use tampons with the pad. Try to change the tampon when you get a chance but try not to leave it in for more than 8 hours. If you find tampons start to leak after around 4 hours for you then don’t worry too much because the pad will save you. Festivals aren’t all that discreet in terms of disposal so take some nappy bags/ dog mess bags and put your used stuff in there. I recommend getting applicator tampons because they are a lot more hygienic. If you prefer using menstrual cups then I really don’t recommend them for music festivals. It’s impossible to get your hands squeaky clean at festivals. And the toilets are disgusting, the sinks are really public too. I’d be too worried about getting an infection. Also the thought of rinsing a mooncup out in a public sink full of spew in front of loads of other people seems gross.

Face wipes/ makeup wipes- I really like micellar water so I either recommend taking a little bottle of that with cotton pads or you can get micellar wipes. Micellar can also be used to clean makeup brushes (post coming soon) so if you are taking brushes it’s a good choice. Other than that your favourite brand of makeup wipe would do. You could even use baby wipes, I just feel like they break me out.

MAKEUP

Make-up is like 5000% unnecessary at music festivals. But I’m not here to shame you for wanting to take some. I do sometimes. Here’s what I recommend

  • Foundation you can apply with your fingers
  • Concealer
  • Setting Powder
  • Bronzer
  • Powder Brush
  • Blender brush
  • Lipstick/ tinted lip balm.
  • Eyeliner
  • Compact mirror.

If you have good skin, you could skip the foundation & concealer. Or you could skip foundation and just use the concealer to cover your blemishes. You can use the blender brush to apply the bronzer to your crease, and then you can also use it to contour. Use a light hand while contouring with a small brush otherwise it will look streaky. The eyeliner and lipstick are optional, I never take them.  This should all take around 2 minutes to do so it won’t get in the way of having a good time. I usually get lazy and stop around Friday though.

HAIR CARE

Brush, hair ties & headbands for keeping your hair neat. I recommend a tangle teaser because they are small, light and will get through any knot. Give up on your hair looking nice. Keep it in plaits/ buns, ponytails. You can pay to use GHD’s at the festival if you REALLY want to but I’d rather save my money and look like a scruff.

Dry shampoo- if you’re hair gets oily take some dry shampoo. Lush has a good one that comes in a tiny bottle. I pour it out into a little sifter jar and take that because it’s even smaller.

Hair oil/ serum- if you hair gets dry I’d take some hair oil/ serum. I like this one because it’s really affordable. This should make it more manageable. I used to use it when I bleached my hair and it makes looking after it during festivals so much easier.

That’s about it for extra things to pack for girls. I’ll be doing a women’s clothes packing list which will be up soon. Comment if you have any other suggestions! Hope this helped.

ULTIMATE FESTIVAL PACK LIST

The following post contains amazon associate links- please read the disclosure.

Hello! Welcome to my ultimate festival pack list! Today’s blog post is going to be the first in a mini series of blog posts all about music festivals. I’m going to advise you on what to take and tips for having a better time. Festivals are really fun and I promise you it will be one of the best times of your life. The only problem is that they can be quite hard going if you’re not used to camping/ sleeping in dirt. If you prepare well they really aren’t that bad.

I’ve seen a lot of these festival pack list posts but I’m quite stuck up and I think they are all bad. I want to make my own because I really feel I am very knowledgeable about this. I have been to 4 full music festivals, plus lots more for 1 day only. I’ve been going to at least one every year since I was 15. This year I’ll be going to 2 more. I used to go to army cadets where they would make us sleep in our full uniform underneath a bit of tarp in the rain. As well as that, my dad is a camping expert and I’ve been camping almost every year since I was born. Trust me, I know my stuff. This wasn’t written by someone who went to Glastonbury one time.

This is going to be really long and I apologise. I could have made it shorter by not rambling on about my festival stories all the way through. I just want you guys to learn from my mistakes okay.

This post misses out stuff only girls would need to take. I did another post about that you can read it here.

BASIC STUFF YOU REALLY NEED.

Money- as the BARE minimum I’d recommend £100- £125 spending money. Food can be pricey, t-shirts will cost £30 each and you also need to allow for emergency purchases, but if you are well prepared then you shouldn’t have too many of those. If you have the money you could eat in fancy places and go shopping every day though so the sky is the limit. Take more if you are going to Glastonbury because it’s full of rich people and the vendors take advantage of it.

Phone- I lost my phone at a festival once and ever since I’ve always taken a £10 Nokia one. The charge lasts ages and nobody would want to steal it.

List of emergency contacts- In case your phone gets stolen/lost it’s good to have a list of phone numbers with you.

Contraception- If you need it. If you’re on the pill take spares.

Rucksack/ Burgan- This is my method of choice for carrying everything. Get a huge rucksack for carrying all your clothes/ essentials. We used to use these when I was in army cadets. They make a really heavy load seem quick light as all the weight is on your legs, back and core muscles not just your arms.  You can carry additional bags with food & stuff in them then.

Sack Trolley- these are useful for carrying crates and other heavy stuff. Take some bungee cords to strap things to it.

CAMPING EQUIPMENT & other random essentials.

Tent- PLEASE TAKE A GOOD TENT. This is the most important thing. Don’t take a pop-up tent. They may seem cheaper and easier to put up. But they will ruin your weekend if it rains, and there is a 97% chance it will rain. At download last year, it rained very very heavily on the Friday night. Me and my boyfriend’s tent, was WARM and dry, and definitely worth the £100 I paid for it and the 20 minutes it takes to put up. Our friend had a pop-up tent, it flooded, he slept in a puddle and went home Saturday morning. He left it and we used it as a toilet for the rest of the weekend. It was hilariously tragic. It’s definitely worth the investment to buy a good one.

Mallet and spare tent pegs- The floor can usually be hard to put tent pegs into so it helps to have a mallet and spare pegs in case you bend some.

Roll mat/ self-inflating air mat– You need a barrier between your body and the floor while you sleep for insulation. If you don’t the floor will steal all your body heat and you will be really cold #ProCamperKnowledge.

Sleeping bag- a high-quality one so you don’t get cold.

Mini pillows- not necessary but nice to have. I made some last year and they were very comfy.

Blanket- again not essential but I like having a blanket to wrap around me when I’m cold.

Towel- a really small one is handy if you can manage to pack one.

Bin bags- for rubbish and makeshift ponchos.

Torches & batteries- for finding things in the tent in the dark.

Gaffa tape- for patching up your tent if it breaks.

FOOD & DRINK

Alcohol- try to go for stronger drinks you can drink less of, just don’t over-do it. If you can’t drink vodka straight don’t plan to the entire weekend to save space. I like taking wine in little plastic bottles. Or Sourz mixed with a bit of lemonade. Remember you can’t take glass bottles so tip it into plastic bottles. Cans are fine but heavy so if you are taking crates buy a sack trolley.

Water & soft drinks- there are taps for you to fill water bottles up but it’s still good to take some full ones for the first day. Also, take soft drinks because they cost £2.50 each at the festival.

Snacks- Cereal bars are a good choice, as are crisps. Take things that won’t go off.

You could take a whole cooking set up if you wanted, it might save you money, but I’d rather spend the extra £20- £40 it would cost to buy it there and have more time to enjoy myself.

TOILETRIES

Anti-bacterial hand wipes– you can buy them in big packs on amazon. I prefer these to hand sanitizer because they are less bulky and you can use them to disinfect things too.

Tissue paper- get them in those plastic pouches of 10 because they are more portable.

Travel Johns– they are a bag that you wee in and it turns your wee into an odourless gel. Nice for when it’s raining in the middle of the night but not essential.

Bed Bath Wipes or Baby wipes- I highly recommend getting a pack of Clinell Bed Bath wipes. Nurses use them to bathe patients and they are the next best thing to showering. They are really cheap. If you can’t find them baby wipes will do.

Sunscreen and aftersun – take lots because you never know. I really needed it last year. Also, put some on before you queue. I had a red, sore, crusty, sunburnt face last year just from the queue. When I got home everyone laughed at me. It wasn’t even sunny the rest of the time it rained constantly.

Tooth paste, Travel toothbrush, Mouthwash & fresh breath spray- I like Lush Toothy Tabs for festivals because they are really small. Get one of those tooth brushes with a cover.

Deodorant

Lip Balm.

Dry Shampoo- I never use it but if your hair gets greasy easily you might want some.

Take a mini shampoo, conditioner & shower gel just in case you need to shower. I don’t recommend showering, but if someone throws a pint of wee at your head you probably should.

Lush Foot Deodorant– This is a little extravagant but lush has a product called T is for Toes that I like to sprinkle in my wellies. This stops my feet from smelling throughout the 5 days. I don’t want to camp with my boyfriend if I have smelly feet.

FIRST AID

Painkillers- It’s good to take a combination with you as they all do different things. Paracetamol is good for headaches, Ibuprofen is good for muscle pain. Co-codamol is good for when you’re in a lot of pain.

Allergy tablets- if you get hay fever.

Plasters

Blister plasters

Antiseptic cream

Heat pack- I get bad stomach cramps so I usually take adhesive disposable heat packs with me but obviously not everyone would need these.

Emergency Foil Blanket– These are useful for if you are absolutely freezing and cannot warm up at all. I wish I had one 2 years ago at reading.

Other than this any other first aid needs you have can be dealt with by festival staff. There are usually first aid tents everywhere so if you need something else ask them.

Period stuff- It’s not a medical condition but it can feel like it. I’ve written more about this in another blog post (read it here). I did download on a painful period once, so chill, you can do it.

CLOTHES

I’m going to do another post about clothes specifically for girls because I am a girl & have more advice to give. But here are some general ideas of what everyone should take.

Wellies/ boots- boots look cool but wellies are definitely better. They are light and you can rinse mud off them very easily. Take high-quality ones and make sure you do take some with you because buying them there is really expensive.

Trainers- wear ones that fit perfectly and won’t come off. One of my vans came off my feet during slipknot last year and I had to crowd surf out and then walk back in the rain with one shoe.

Comfy socks- lots of them.

Rain ponchos – You can get multipacks of disposable ones on amazon, or you can get a durable fabric one. It’s up to you. If you have a fabric one I’d still recommend taking the disposable to carry with you when it’s sunny just in case because they are really small.

Underwear- take more than you think you need

A warm jumper/ hoodie

Swimming costume in case you need to shower.

A combination of warm clothes and light clothes. Take things that can dry out easily if they get soaking wet. T-shirts are a good and obvious choice for tops, wear jeans at your own risk because they will stay wet for hours after it rains. If you are a girl, leggings are your best friend because they are good for warm and cool weather and will dry really quickly if you get wet.

FUN STUFF

This is obviously subjective, take whatever you want to entertain yourselves.

UV Body paint/ glitter- Get it on amazon before you go because it’s more expensive there. Sometimes I take a pack of washable felt tip pens so that my boyfriend can write Taylor Swift lyrics all over himself (don’t ask.)

Pack of cards/ card game- A pack of cards is good for drinking games. You could also take some other type of card game. We like to take a frozen card game I got for free in Morrisons one day. Anything is fun when you are drunk.

So that’s about all I can think of right now but I will add to it as I remember. I’ve kept this one as gender neutral as I can. I have a whole load of other recommendations for girls as we have extra issues and needs to deal with. I’ll deal with that in my next post. If you think I missed anything comment below and I’ll add it. I really hope this helped somebody. 

 

 

Copyright Guide for Fashion Bloggers: How To Use Runway/ Red Carpet Photographs Legally on your Blog

Since I decided to take this blog more seriously, I’ve been doing research into the legal side of all this internet stuff. I thought that tax would be the hardest thing for me to understand, but honestly, copyright is the area which I find the most confusing. Fashion blogs are FULL of copyrighted, illegally used images. Especially small little blogs like mine. At this moment in time I’m thinking about all the pictures I need to replace and thanking myself that I did this now and not later. A lot of people think that any photo can be used as long as you use it in the context of a review. Copyright law (in the UK at least) does state that you can reproduce small amounts of a copyrighted work for the purposes of reviewing it. What a lot of people don’t know, is that in the UK, copyrighted photographs are not allowed to be used in the context of news reporting. Here’s what I found on Gov.uk:

“Fair dealing for criticism, review or quotation is allowed for any type of copyright work. Fair dealing with a work for the purpose of reporting current events is allowed for any type of copyright work other than a photograph. In each of these cases, a sufficient acknowledgment will be required.

As stated, a photograph cannot be reproduced for the purpose of reporting current events. The intention of the law is to prevent newspapers or magazines reproducing photographs for reporting current events which have appeared in competitor’s publications.”

What I understand from this information is that a review is okay but news reporting isn’t when using copyrighted photographs. This is where it gets tricky, If I were to write a blog post about the red carpet of the MTV music awards, and included images of what all the artists wore and commented on it, what would that count as? To me that would be a review of the outfit choices of the celebrities. To the law however, it may be considered as news reporting. This is a risk I’m not willing to take. Bloggers can and have been sued in the past, it doesn’t matter if you don’t earn any money from your blog.

If I’m totally honest with you it makes me quite angry because copyright is not fair at all. As an aspiring artist/ designer I understand that these laws are in place to protect people like me from getting ripped off, however, that’s not how it works in real life. If a big company were to steal my work and sell it I would be powerless to do anything about it. Whereas I myself, could be sued for £10,000 by a huge company just for one low res image in a blog post that’s got about 10 views.

Luckily there free alternatives to getting sued that are totally legal and just as good in my opinion. Getty Images has a library of images that you can freely embed into your blog post. They come with the attribution already at the bottom of the image. If you look you will find hundreds of thousands of images you can use on your fashion blog. All you need to do is hover over the image, click on the embed icon (it looks like this </>). It will then allow you to select the size of the image that you want, and then give you a code. Just place this code directly into your blog post in the place you want your image and  bam you are done. I actually prefer it because it’s so much faster than uploading images to WordPress.

As far as I’m aware, this is totally legal as long as you don’t use the images to suggest any sort of ownership of the image, or any partnership with the fashion brand  that doesn’t exist. That being said, please please please do your own research before including images into your blog posts. I am NOT a lawyer, far from it. I just wanted to share this information that I found. I’m going to include some links below to information about UK copyright law. If you are from another country please look at different resources relevant to your own country. As far as I’m aware Getty images embed can be used in any country but PLEASE don’t take my word for it.

A VERY comprehensive but easy to understand guide by Gov.UK– This is a Government run website so it can be trusted.

A basic guide to Fair Dealing– Another easy to understand site, but you’re better off with Gov.UK in my opinion.

A link to the actual legislation– maybe worth a read if you are a brainiac/law student/ currently being sued. I haven’t read it.

 

 

I Made An Art Journal!

Over the past few weeks I’ve been working hard to declutter my bedroom. Since leaving college I have been gathering piles of random paper and doodles that probably should have gone in the bin. I managed to bin most of the paperwork but I was amazed at how many random drawings I found. Instead of throwing them away decided to create an art journal, and make collages with them.

I’ve always flirted with the idea of art journaling. I kept a written diary for many years and found it therapeutic. I find art incredibly calming. When I’m feeling anxious or upset I often turn to drawing as a way to take my mind off it.To boost my inspiration, I joined Journal Workshops, an online art community created by JennieBellie. I don’t know if I’ll ever use my journal like she uses hers. She puts so much hard work and effort into them. Mine is a lot more scribbly and rough. That being said, I’ve really enjoyed working in this journal. I just know art journaling is going to be one of my favourite pass times from now on.

I made my journal out of a Morplan catalogue I had in the post that day. The pages were really thin so I grabbed random bits of paper out of the piles I was throwing away. It’s mostly college stuff, one of the backgrounds is actually my 2015 ucas application to study history. That page can be dedicated to my inability to make life decisions. The illustrations on that page where the first ever fashion illustrations that I did. It’s encouraging to see how bad I was at drawing last summer because it makes me wonder how good I’ll be next summer. I’m sure that I did the portrait of the girl with pink hair when I was around 14 so I was happy that I found that.

LOUISE ALICE JAY ART JOURNAL Catalougeg I have a HUGE Morplan catalouge I’m keeping for when I finish this art journal. It has around 600 pages and would probably take about 4 years to finish. I want to have a big journal so that I can flick through it and see how much my skills have improved over time. I have some old university prospectuses that would make great journals too as they have thicker paper. A coat of gesso and they could probably be painted on.

As I work through my journal I’m going to start sharing recent pages here on my blog. I’m also going to be taking part in the monthly challenges on Journal Workshops. I like the idea of doing a monthly blog post reviewing pages in my journal, and sharing what I did during the channel.

Does anybody else keep an art journal? do you prefer to use sketchbooks, altered books or do you prefer to make your own journals?