Broke in the Big Smoke

Life in London on a Budget

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, The Palace Theatre

Cursed Child

It was always difficult being Harry Potter and it isn’t much easier now that he is an overworked employee of the Ministry of Magic, a husband and father of three school-age children.

While Harry grapples with a past that refuses to stay where it belongs, his youngest son Albus must struggle with the weight of a family legacy he never wanted. As past and present fuse ominously, both father and son learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes, darkness comes from unexpected places.

What a week to be a nerd eh? Those of you who know me personally will know that my two true loves in life are Harry Potter (I’m a Ravenclaw FYI) and Star Trek (Team Janeway all the way) so you can imagine how flipping ridiculous it is that I not only had such an incredible experience at the Star Trek: Beyond premiere but was incredibly lucky to have tickets to see Cursed Child in previews which happened to fall in the same week.

Yes, sure, go ahead and hate me, I definitely deserve it but damn there is no way that I couldn’t not blog about such a wonderful theatrical London experience just because it might make a few people jealous. Of course as a fan I will most definitely #keepthesecrets so if you’re after spoilers you’ll find none here! (Although I may do another write-up once the script is released I’m undecided.)

Cursed Child theatre

First of all, the play is still technically in previews. Despite having been running for around a month it doesn’t officially open until the 30th July so some details may change but I am fairly confident that they have the majority of the show nailed by now. Secondly, I will admit straight up that as excited as I was about new Harry Potter content I was totally skeptical when the play was announced and even more so when it was revealed that it would be in two parts. Obviously as a huge fan I was always going to see it anyway and was incredibly lucky to obtain central seats just four rows from the stage back in October.

Eight months later I am so happy that I was able to shut that inner critic up because I can without a doubt say that it was better than I could possibly have ever imagined and totally worth the wait. In fact, I am already desperate to go and see it again! That said if you have tickets I would also urge you NOT to read the script when it’s released in a couple of weeks if you can possibly restrain yourself. I PROMISE you that going in knowing as little as possible will make the experience ten times better for you but I appreciate how difficult that will be (I remember I was visiting my ex-boyfriend’s mum when Deathly Hallows was released and was told I couldn’t read it in the car on the way home from buying it because it was rude – yeah he’s an ex for a reason! – and that was only a couple of hours wait!) for those of you who don’t have tickets well into 2017 or perhaps not at all. It really does need to be seen to be believed.

So, how can I review a play of which I do not wish to mention anything of consequence? I’ll start at the beginning and say that I was weeping for at least the first five minutes as some of my favourite characters were brought to life right in front of my eyes. It’s not like watching a movie, they are really there, right in front of you and despite some of the controversy around certain casting choices they were all absolutely incredible. There is no suspension of belief here; Noma Dumezweni is Hermione through and through, Jamie Parker is an older, worn-out Harry and Paul Thornley, well I’m not sure he could be any closer to being Ron Weasley if he tried (well unless he was a real ginger).

But in all honesty they aren’t even close to being the best of the bunch with the children instead stealing the show. Sam Clemmet as Albus Severus Potter and Anthony Boyle as Scorpius Malfoy standing out head and shoulders above many of their older colleagues. I guess they did have it slightly easier in that their characters are theirs to make their own (I believe JKR actually gave them licence to create some of their own back story to help them find them) but that doesn’t detract from the fact that they are each incredibly talented at their craft.

I don’t think it gives anything away to say that the supporting cast also get their chance to shine with many playing multiple characters (not uncommon in theatre even huge productions like this one) and the on stage choreography of the swing is utter perfection – I’m heading close to spoiler territory here so I will stop lol.

The Palace Theatre is a beautiful building perfect for something so magical and the crew have truly made it home by utilising it to its full potential – secrets are everywhere! 😉 The stage while at first seeming quite simple is used in the most remarkable of ways some of which I wouldn’t have thought possible but I guess when you’re dealing with a story about wizards it becomes your job to make the impossible possible. And of course there is a lot of trickery and special effects that make you believe in the world of witchcraft and wizardry!

I’m literally not going to mention any part of the actual plot at all but I will say that it made me laugh, weep, get goosebumps, gasp and actually swear out loud on a couple of occasions (apologies to anyone sitting near me, I’m sure you understood!) I couldn’t have seen any of it coming and yet somehow everything fit perfectly within the already established canon which is no mean feat for a franchise that’s been around for almost 20 years.

I have to admit I was a bit worried about the length of the show. With part one having a runtime of 2 hours 50 and part two 2 hours 40 it sounds like quite a challenge to watch both parts in one day but neither part felt anywhere near as long as it actually was and I found myself wishing that time would slow down just a little. One viewing of this incredible play isn’t enough. I want more and I want it now but given that it’s currently sold out until the end of May 2017 I’ll have to be patient and wait, either for someone to invent a timeturner or by consoling myself with the script and the fact that I am one of the lucky few who got to experience the magic first hand.

If you don’t have your tickets yet don’t forget about the #FridayForty where you can get tickets for the following week – info on the Cursed Child website.

Fury, Soho Theatre

This is Sam. Young, impulsive, single mum. Londoner born and bred and never ever left. Sam makes her mistakes, but who can blame her? Tom rents the flat above, the one Sam cleans. If they can come to ‘an arrangement’ he won’t call the Social on her. You might think Tom is a monster. You might think Sam’s kids would be better off without her. Someone needs to make a decision.

Shortlisted for the Verity Bargate Award and winner of the Soho Theatre Young Writer’s Award, Fury is a chilling and powerful modern Medea about motherhood and class, taking an unapologetic look at the single young mum, the one already judged before she’s even opened her mouth.

Being truly spoiled for choice when it comes to theatre in London it’s easy to overlook the smaller shows that come and go at many of the more artsy venues like the Hampstead or Soho Theatres. Luckily I get some cracking invites from the team at TheatreBloggers.co.uk for these and whenever I see certain shows I’m immediately reminded why, sometimes, it pays off to throw caution to the wind on an unknown performance.

That’s how I felt when I left the powerful matinée performance of Fury on Saturday after an hour spent completely captivated. With such a fast paced script it felt like it was a much longer performance but not once did my attention waver.

With only two real main characters in the show both Sarah Ridgeway (Sam) and Alex Austin (Tom) really carry it, supported beautifully by their trio of narrators who each strive to show a different viewpoint on the situations at hand much like would happen in society today.

Both Sarah and Alex take their characters on incredibly convincing journeys from what they first appear to be to something very different indeed. I actually quite liked Tom at the beginning and yet, by about halfway through I hated him with incredible passion for what he puts Sam through.

The staging is simple, yet clever and conveys the claustrophobia of the situation well by having the audience surrounding it on all four sides. Music also plays quite a big part in this play with the choices of some songs seeming quite strange and yet also completely perfect for the moment it’s enhancing.

As mentioned above I left this performance in awe of the powerful script, performances and hopefully a little less judgemental about people I don’t know. It was incredibly thought-provoking and I thoroughly recommend it to all. If you want to catch it, it’s running until the 30th July as part of Who Runs the World? Girls.

*Disclaimer: I attended this play for free in exchange for blogging about the show.
The above opinions are still my own and not influenced by this in any way.

Ways to save money on… Magazines

This year I want to take the blog back in a personal finance direction and thought a good way of doing this would be to start a little series on ways to save money. Some of these will be London focused while others will be more general. Hopefully at least one of the topics in this series will catch your eye and help you save a few pennies!

How to Save Money on Magazines

I’ll be honest, I’m not really one for reading magazines any more – I don’t have much space in my current flat and they just seem to take up space and time I don’t have – so when I do buy magazines it tends to be for the free gift that comes with it more than anything else! But if you can’t resist a glossy magazine or two it can get pretty expensive pretty quickly so here are some excellent tips on how to save money on your favourites:

O2 Priority Moments

If like me you’re a once in a blue moon kind of magazine reader, then look into getting O2’s Priority Moments on your mobile (here’s a trick on how to get it even if you’re not with O2 as your mobile provider) as every month you are allowed to download a magazine for free from a small selection. This month I got the special Star Trek: Beyond edition of Empire magazine which I am loving!

Readly

If you’re more of a give me all the magazines I need all the gossip I can possibly get type of magazine reader, then check out Readly. It’s basically Netflix for magazines – you pay a £7.99 per month subscription fee and you get access to over 1500 titles including their back issues. With such a huge selection there’s something for everyone and you can even use each subscription on up to 5 devices at a time so it’s great to share with the family.

iSubscribe

If you can’t resist a physical copy or you’re really loyal to a particular magazine, then it’s definitely worth signing up for a subscription via iSubscribe. Not only does it save you money in the long run (up to 95% depending on deals available) but you’re guaranteed never to miss an issue AND you get free delivery thrown in too. With over 2500 titles to choose from they’re sure to have your fave! Some of the best deals they have at the moment are 5 issues of Red Magazine for £5, 3 issues of Moneywise for £1 and 5 issues of Men’s/Women’s health for £5 too.

 

Through The Time Portal with Stella Artois

Last night I was very lucky to attend a very special event being put on by Stella Artois to celebrate Wimbledon as Charlie‘s plus one. The Time Portal promised to transport us back to Victorian London just in time for the very first Wimbledon tournament – if you’ve read my blog for a while you’ll know I love a little bit of immersive theatre and when I heard it had been created by the genius theatre troupe behind last years Alice Underground, Les Enfants Terribles.

Stella Artois The Time Portal

We arrived promptly for our 6:40pm slot and watched the present day Wimbledon match on a tiny screen (go on Murray!) before being led through to the back of the pub and in to the time machine to begin our journey. I won’t spoil what happens from there but it’s a fun, madcap adventure full of some of your favourite Victorian characters such as Dodger from Oliver Twist, Sherlock Holmes and Ebenezer Scrooge.
Stella Artois The Time Portal Time Machine
There are two main things that can make or break an immersive performance in my opinion: set dressing and timing – and I’m pleased to say that for this production both of these needs were met impeccably. The amount of effort that has gone into the setting for a show of such a short duration – just four days – was incredible and as with any good immersive productions I desperately wanted to take a look around (there is some opportunity for this but not enough!) The show is around 40 minutes long and the slots just 20 minutes apart so there are actually two groups going through the experience at any given time – this didn’t always work in Alice but here it was perfect.

After the show I happened to bump in to Andy from Be Clever With Your Cash in the bar and asked him his thoughts – the only complaint being that it was slightly too short. It was also at this point I discovered that like all good immersive performances there were things that I had missed. At one point the group was split in two and I hadn’t even noticed and there was even the potential for a one on one interaction with Queen Victoria! It has desperately made me want to return (and if I liked beer – I don’t enjoy the taste nor does my IBD approve) I would very likely be booking myself a ticket to return later this weekend.
Stella Artois The Time Portal Newspaper
Thankfully I do love a good fruit cider and the Stella cidre choices have been expanded which made it very difficult for me to decide on which of the flavours to try – I was torn between peach or elderflower – in the end I settled for the latter and it was definitely a good choice, perfect for drinking over this hot, sticky summer we’ve been having!

As mentioned above the run for the show is short with it ending tomorrow but there are some tickets available on their website if you’re quick and if you love fun theatre and a good beer then it’s well worth going along. Tickets cost £18 and include the show and two drinks.

BitBS Rating – ££

*Disclaimer: As a +1 I was under no obligation to post about my experience.
The above opinions are still my own and not influenced by this in any way.

Fitness Friday: Hot Yoga with Fitness First

I’ve actually been doing a not too bad job of keeping to my promise to look after myself a bit better and now that my steroids have kicked in properly I’m finding that I have a lot more energy for things. So when Fitness First invited me to try out a hot yoga class at their Angel branch to celebrate International Yoga Day I figured why the heck not.  After all I’d really enjoyed the hot pilates class I tried a couple of years ago and rumour has it that heat actually helps make you that little bit more flexible too. In fact it has a whole bunch of other benefits including the ability to stretch more deeply, relax your muscles and flush out more toxins through sweating.

Left to right: Emma, Charlie, Ashleigh (who's photo it is!), Me, Amanda & Viki

Left to right: Emma, Charlie, Ashleigh (whose photo it is!), Me, Amanda & Viki

We were given a quick tour of the gym which on top of the regular equipment, a pretty substantial weights and freestyle area has a couple of studios including one for spinning and of course their new hot yoga studio which we were there to give a whirl. It’s the first gym in the area to have its own hot room and the best part is the cost of these classes is included in the cost of a regular membership. Given that these can cost £20-30 a time it’s a substantial saving if you’re a regular plus it means you’ll have access to a sauna and who doesn’t like to chill out in a sauna?

The room was already pretty toasty when we entered at a warm 36ºC – a little lower than the 40ºC required for Bikram yoga which differs slightly in that no matter where you attend a class you repeat the same 26 movements in sequence for a 90 minute duration. Thankfully our class was a much shorter (and easier) 45 minute introduction which was just perfect for a beginner like me!

Fitness First Hot Yoga Class

When I say perfect I mean I did my best. I’d picked a mat towards the front of the class so I couldn’t get distracted by how well everyone else was doing in comparison (and it helped that the room was dimly lit too) but for the first time I ever I actually didn’t struggle too much with the breathing part which I think made the whole thing that tiny bit easier.  It did soon become very clear that I have absolutely no upper body strength and I struggled to hold the poses for as long as was required. That didn’t stop me from giving it my all though and I actually felt really proud for reaching the end of the class – I’m not sure I’d cope in a regular 75 minute long class but I’d definitely like to try it again some time.

You can find out more about the Fitness First hot yoga classes here and if you want to know what the rest of the girls thought of the class you can read their posts too: Amanda, Ashleigh, Charlie, Emma and Viki.

*Disclaimer: I attended this class for free
in exchange for blogging about the event.
The above opinions are still my own and not influenced by this in any way.

Kerbisher & Malt, Hammersmith

Whenever I’m asked by friends where to eat in a particular area of London I always open up the Zomato app and check out what places I have bookmarked in the area however when my friend Stephen and Vee suggested we meet for a quick bite to eat in Hammersmith before they went to see Nashville in concert I was surprised to see that I had none!

Not to be defeated I had a quick scroll through the whole list for the area (excluding chain restaurants) and came across two potential contenders.  A Japanese restaurant called Suzu and a fish and chip place by the name of Kerbisher & Malt. We settled on the former but I stupidly didn’t pay attention to the opening times and when we got there we were too early. It didn’t open until 6pm! So off we toddled back along the road and around the corner and found the most instagrammable little shop.
Kerbisher and Malt
Welcome to Kerbisher & Malt.

Inside is clean and bright with a minimalistic look but with little touches, like the menu engraved in the tiles, that also make it that little bit more special. It’s not a huge place and most of the tables were taken when we arrived but we were able to squeeze ourselves on to the end of the long sharing table.

Kerbisher and Malt Interior 1

I’d hoped to have a decent fish and chips when I’d been at home the previous weekend but hadn’t been able to fit it in around all the other home comforts I’d stuffed myself and so went straight for the cod and chips as my dish. I was really happy to see that they do smaller portions of two different kinds of fish which is perfect for those of us with smaller appetites. That said I wouldn’t exactly call the portion I received small anyway – check it out, the plate was absolutely loaded with chips and I couldn’t finish them all. (I also ordered a round of bread and butter to go with it because what else do you do?)
Kerbisher and Malt Fish n chips2
Kerbisher and Malt Fish n chips 1

I chose the sweet chilli dipping sauce to go with it which I believe was homemade and delicious – nothing like what you get in bottles at the supermarket and far better for it. But of course the star of the show was the fish and I’m pleased to say the batter was light and crunchy without being too oily with a thick white cut of fish nestled in the middle of it. I finished every last morsel of it and then whacked some of those chips into the bread to make a chip butty – can you say perfect meal or what?

They also cater really well for veggies with Vee opting for the falafel which came with a beautiful colourful side salad. It’s also really nice to see some slightly different soft drinks to the normal on the menu and both Vee and I opted for an elderflower cordial which came in the cutest little glass milk bottles which had me squeeing for days.
Kerbisher and Malt Falafel

The best part is (if you’ll excuse the pun) how cheap as chips everything is! My meal cost less than a tenner in total which for London is pretty damn good.  Oh and if you’re not a fan of battered fish they’ll also grill it or coat it in a matzo meal for you instead – so many options.

It might have been our second choice but it did not disappoint! And I was pleased to discover, as Emma and I walked to the hot yoga class at Fitness First later that week (more on this tomorrow), that they have a couple of other branches including the one I passed in Clerkenwell. Well worth seeking out if you’re in need of a fishy fix!

BitBS Rating – ££
Kerbisher & Malt Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

June Reading

*

You can see how I’m getting on with the PopSugar Reading Challenge here.

BOOKS READ THIS MONTH: 4
BOOKS READ SO FAR THIS YEAR: 22
BOOKS READ FOR POPSUGAR READING CHALLENGE: 13

*Disclaimer: I was sent a copy of Go Your Crohn Way
by the publisher in exchange for a review.
The above opinions are still my own and not influenced by this in any way.

This page also contains affiliate links.
If you buy the books through the links on this page,
I’ll earn a tiny commission to put towards even more books in the future!

Favourites – June 2016

It’s been a couple of months since I last wrote a favourites post with one thing and another but I really enjoy sharing the things that I love with you guys so I wanted to bring it back before it gets forgotten about.

Wheatus

I mentioned this in my monthly roundup but I honestly had such a wonderful time at the Brooklyn Bowl seeing these guys that I wanted to include them here as well. I’m not a huge gig-goer but I LOVED that there was no set list and that the band just took requests from their entire back catalogue from the audience. Given that they’ve been together 21 years that’s no mean feat.

Multicoloured Stripe Day Dress

I treated myself to this beaut of a dress from Tu this month and was a bit worried as they only had it left in a size 12 but it fits like a dream and I absolutely adore it! I just need this horrible weather to sort itself out so I can actually wear it out somewhere!

Tu Sainsburys Stripe Day Dress

Orange is the New Black

It’s back!! And it’s better than ever. I started watching it when it first aired simply because Kate Mulgrew is in it and Janeway is the best Star Trek captain (#sorry #notsorry) and honestly this has become one of my favourite TV shows. I love that all the episodes are released together so that there’s no waiting around for the next episode I can just keep on going. I’m only a couple of eps in so far but I keep hearing amazing things about the finale so I can’t wait to get caught up!

Orange-is-the-New-Black

Botanist Gin

The lovely Katy invited me along to Selfridges as her plus one for the launch of a cocktail collaboration between the bars within the department store and Botanist Gin. Each head bartender was tasked with creating their own unique cocktail using the gin and foraged ingredients and we were lucky enough to try all four throughout the night. It’s funny because until recently I didn’t think I even liked gin but it turns out that I’m actually just very fussy about what kind of tonic I drink it with!

TOAD Diaries*

I met Jacob from TOAD Diaries at the Bloggers Ball earlier in the month and he was kind enough to gift me a personalised diary of my own. As soon as I saw this London theme as an option on the site I was sold and now that it is arrived I am even more in love. I already have a small diary for my day to day social engagements which is perfect for throwing in my handbag so I’m going to use this one to (hopefully) help organise my online life a bit more!

TOAD Diaries Outside

I already use a google calendar to plan posts but I’ve always been a sucker for physically writing things down. I’ve colour coded it and everything – red for blog posts, blue for main channel videos and pink for my #NotaBeautyExpert side channel – there’s even enough space to write to-do lists so that I don’t forget important things and notes for each week. I think it’s going to make a HUGE difference to my productivity

TOAD Diaries Inside

*Disclaimer: my diary was complimentary in exchange for blogging about it
The above opinions are still my own and not influenced by this in any way.

June Roundup

June, June, June. What a month. It feels like one that has lasted an age but I made it through in one piece!

I started the month getting an all-important smear test and also managing to see the gastroenterology specialist on quite short notice who confirmed that I was likely flaring, got me on a course of steroids and booked in for a colonoscopy the following week to see what was what. Good news is that while I am in a flare the damage is still contained in the same area as before.

After enjoying them so much when they supported Busted I went to see Wheatus at the Brooklyn Bowl at the O2. It’s a really cool little venue which I’ll be keeping my eye on in future not least because it’s so close to my flat! I fell a little bit in love with the ladies loos there too.

My weeknight evenings were pretty quiet for the first part of the month but I did fly home to surprise my niece for the weekend and to also celebrate my great-nephews 5th birthday – it’s scary how quickly they’re all growing up! We had a delicious meal at Frankie & Benny’s by the beach before letting the kids run loose on all the carnival rides. Despite the weather not being the best it was a great weekend but as usual over too fast.

Little monkeys at Codonas Aberdeen

Finally after MONTHS of saying I would do it I treated myself to a massage at a place called Beauty Dream in Poplar thanks to an incredible Wowcher deal.  For £18 I received a 30 minute facial and an hour long massage. The massage wasn’t quite deep enough for my liking but the experience as a whole was very relaxing and I really didn’t want to have to leave to get home afterwards.

Picnic With Mercure Hamper 1

I spent a lovely Friday evening in the middle of the week with some other gorgeous bloggers at the #PicnicWithMercure event then left them to it so I could see the ethereal Depart at Tower Hamlets Cemetery Park. Two social engagements in one evening probably wasn’t the best plan after being ill for so long but it was totally worth it.

The next day saw me finally get my haircut, attend the Bloggers Ball which I’ve already blogged about here and have the chance to catch up with my friends Stephen and Vanessa over some delicious fish and chips at Kerbisher and Malt in Hammersmith which was so freaking instagram pretty – promise to blog about this soon.

Kerbisher and Malt

The lovely Little Miss Katy invited me as her plus one to attend an event at Selfridges in collaboration with The Botanist gin – more of this in my June favourites post next week.

Unfortunately after leaving Katy for the evening I had a phone call about a family emergency which meant I had to drop everything to fly home the following morning. I had the call at 10pm, had booked my flight by midnight and was at the airport by 8am ready for my 9:30am flight. It was slightly delayed due to the absolutely insane storm that had hit London over night but made it home by lunchtime – I’m nothing if I’m not practical!

It took a few days but everything is now sorted out once again and despite being itching to get back to my life in London the only suitable flights were all fully booked (I blame Wimbledon and the fact that yesterday was the last day of term for schools in Scotland) which meant I was “stuck” in Aberdeen until I could catch the train down today.

This wasn’t all bad for me as it’s been a while since I’ve spent any decent amount of time in Aberdeen so I took the opportunity to catch up with my lovely friend Andi who I haven’t seen since January and hear all about his beautiful wedding and complain about all the adulting I’ve had to do recently! We went to a little place called Foodstory which I loved! It’s a cafe-cum-community space which serves good (mostly) vegetarian food and wonderful (I’ve been told) coffee. I had a white hot chocolate which was absolutely delicious and felt really at home – it’s got a bit of an East London vibe to it, just wish it had been open when I used to live in the Deen! We sat there for about three and a half hours with only one hot drink each and we were never made to feel unwelcome or like we were taking up valuable space. I’ll definitely be back on return trips home!

I also took the opportunity to pop in to my flat up North to see what state it’s in as my tenants are moving out next month. I was really happy to see that there is very little change from when they moved in 2 years ago so now I just need to cross my fingers that I can find new tenants as the market up there is pants! If I can’t get it rented out in the next month or so then I need to start thinking about moving back which I’m not quite ready to do. Here’s hoping for a slightly more balanced July!

The Scarlett London Bloggers Ball

A couple of weeks back I made the spontaneous decision to grab a ticket for Scarlett London’s sold out Bloggers Ball when one became available. I love any excuse to have a natter with fellow bloggers and since starting my #NotaBeautyExpert beauty channel I’ve been taking much more of an interest in finding brands to try especially those that are cruelty free.

This was my first Scarlett London event so I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect. I met up with Emma nearby and we walked the venue where the event was being hosted. It was held in DSTRK club in Piccadilly which I’d never been to before but was incredibly beautiful. We arrived right on time and the place was already starting to fill up so we decided to start at the back and work our way back to the front which was definitely the best plan as certain areas were super crowded even as little as half an hour later.

Unfortunately, in all of my excitement I took very few pictures while there – although if you follow me on snapchat I did give some sneak peeks –I was just way too busy talking to the representatives of some truly interesting brands.

It’s so rare you find navy jewellery! Love these stackable bracelets from #bohoBetty #styleastack #bloggersball

A photo posted by Leanne Fraser (@msleannefraser) on

Some of my favourites included Boho Betty who make gorgeous wrap around bracelets that you can mix and match to suit your own style. I was super happy to see they even had some in navy blue which is a really underrated colour and totally went with my outfit for the day.

The lovely Pamela from Mortar and Milk was there repping Exuviance which is a skincare brand I had never heard of before. She left quite an impression on me as she knew before I had even answered that my main skin concern is that it’s quite dry and recommended several products for me to try to help improve on this.

Bloggers Ball So Fragrances

Making lots of us reminisce about our teenage years was So…? Fragrances who I have to admit I hadn’t thought about in a very long time! They’ve expanded a lot over the years and now have three separate collections. The original collection, the couture collection and the rock n roll collection so there really is something for everyone.

It’s no secret that I love chocolate and especially flavoured chocolate (rose and violet being my favourite just FYI) so it was nice to chat to the team behind Seed and Bean, a UK brand who produce ethical, sustainable, organic and even vegan chocolate in a variety of flavours. I got to taste their brand new fennel flavour and while it might sound like a weird combination I can assure you it works.

Bloggers Ball On the Beach

Always dreaming of my next vacation it was great to chat to On the Beach who are looking to work more closely with bloggers in the future, wayhey! Sadly, I didn’t win the competition prize of a £500 holiday voucher but I’ll definitely be keeping an eye on their site for deals when I’m looking to book my hols next Summer (I’m already booked for Vegas this year, so excited!)

I was also very curious to hear about Chinup Mask – the non-surgical face lift – which claims you can lose several cm’s from your chin with each use and I cannot wait to give this a go for a YouTube video!

Bloggers Ball Bloggosphere

Blogosphere were also in attendance and it was great to chat to their representatives as the magazine really seems to have taken off this year. It might seem strange that a print magazine about bloggers is a thing when blogging is such an online focused thing but for many bloggers seeing their work in print is the ultimate dream so this actually makes a lot of sense. The magazine certainly seems to be going from strength to strength and I really do need to make a note to pick up a copy when I’m next in WH Smiths!

Of course this is just a handful of the brands who were in attendance but if you want to see what else I was lucky enough to walk away with after the ball then be sure to subscribe to my YouTube channel as there will be a haul video going up there very soon indeed.

Huge thank you to Scarlett London and all of the brands and bloggers who attended for such a lovely afternoon.

*Disclaimer: I paid for my own ticket to this event
and was under no obligation to post about it.

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