Sunday, 19 October 2014

LIFE THROUGH A LENS // A HOBBY


What many people don't know about me is that when I was in college, one of my favourite subjects to study was photography. Although I never really took a liking to the traditional side of photography (probably because it always went wrong when I tried to develop photos myself in the dark room), I've always enjoyed taking photos per se and have even been told once or twice that I have a knack to it. My mum has always commented on how photos I have taken always have great dynamics, and I have to admit, I love exploring new places and trying to find great angles to take photos from or ways to set up a photo.

I thought it would be nice to display some of my favourite photographs taken over the years.

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Inspire Magazine Online - UK Fashion, Beauty & Lifestyle blog | Life Through A Lens // A Hobby; Inspire Magazine; Inspire Magazine Online; Photography
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I'm by no means a professional, but it's definitely something I'd like to explore further, especially when I'm on my travels. It kind of amazes me how all of these photos were taken just on an iPhone too, not some fancy camera!

I think these also serve as a way to look back and remember good memories; we don't always need to take selfies at happy moments and sometimes photographs of your view at the time can transport you back to that moment even more so. Some of favourite photos of Bruges feature above, and even some images just taken on afternoon countryside strolls with my family. The photos from Paris are also particular favourites,

What do you think?

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Thursday, 16 October 2014

MY B-LIST HORROR MOVIES CHALLENGE // HIDDEN


Today I have the second review for my 'B-list horror movies challenge'. Basically, I love horror movies, and even find it kind of fun and amusing to watch the really bad ones. Don't ask me why, because I couldn't tell you why exactly. I also used to have a knack of always buying lots of unknown horror movies just because they were cheap or looked scary from the DVD case, which led me to having a whole stack in my room that I'd never actually gotten around to watching. Now I'm watching them and reviewing them for all of you, so now you can read MY review of these terrible movies before you go out and waste your money buying them yourselves...

Today I'm reviewing Hidden.

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Watched : Wednesday evening after work
Essential movie snacks : A crisp sandwich and a cup of tea
Watched with... : Alone, before going to sleep.
Score out of 5 : 2.5/5


The general premise of this film is that a scientist used to conduct experiments to help 'combat' addiction, believing that addiction can be separated from a person and almost made into it's own life form...Yeah it didn't make much sense to me either. But as these movies go, eventually the whole thing is covered up, the lady scientist dies, and her son receives a letter saying he has inherited her hospital or whatever. He gathers some friends and goes to check it out, apparently unaware of this secret underground chamber where his mother conducted these experiments DESPITE THE FACT THAT THE START OF THE FILM SEES HIM SITTING THERE ON THE FLOOR ALL CHEERY AS HIS MUM DOES SAID EXPERIMENTS.

Despite the dodge story line, the film is actually alright in a not-really-scary-but-interesting-for-an-hour-or-so way. I mean it isn't terrible and the scares are few and far between, but I admit that it held my attention throughout for the most part and I was eager to see how it ended. A few (okay, a lot) of the dumb characters were annoying and the ending was really predictable but overall, for a budget horror film it was an interesting concept.

I took 'notes' throughout the film which probably won't make sense unless you've seen it but here's what else I thought -

  • I like that his mum was the scientist. Usually the bad guys (or the ones who started it all) are old balding men. Ladies can be smart & bad ass too!
  • Why was she doing those experiments with her son sitting there WHAT TYPE OF MOTHER IS SHE
  • wait don’t answer that
  • How did he get into the apartment without a key
  • NOONE SITS ON CHAIRS BACKWARDS ANYMORE what are you doing
  • Why isn’t there snow on the trees outside the place (church, hospital, whatever)
  • Why are they going in search of a fly DOES IT EVEN MATTER
  • Is that Walter whites son
  • So it’s just about killer flies?!?
  • Simon is hilarious in a corny way with his constant HEY BABY ness
  • The side story about the lead dude and his ex is really unnecessary and boring
  • Why is she crying like a lil bitch
  • Hey that kid looks like me when I was young
  • Dodge fringe and all
  • So she cries at all the cages that held the children AND THEN THEY KISS IN THE same place
  • Got over that quickly didn’t ya
  • When his girl gets taken away from the demons and he screams don’t you touch her MATE SHES ALREADY GONE 
  • This film literally makes sense - someone’s addiction is born as a demon child? So what about sex or smoking addiction why do the children just go bonkers and kill everyone what addiction is that supposed to signify
  • That curtain looked like a bubble wall
  • Whatever that is
As you can see, for the most part I was very amused at this film. It was worth a watch - just the once - but I really wish I hadn't wasted money on it. I can't remember how much it was but it was the type of film I'd rather have streamed for free and watched with friends as a laugh. Still, it wasn't a total waste and at least I didn't feel like I wasted an hour and a half of my life watching.

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P.S Check out the Halloween tag for more Halloween related posts and further horror movie reviews of this kind!

Tuesday, 14 October 2014

PERSONAL // HOW BLOGGING HAS CHANGED MY LIFE

I recently read this inspiring post on Zoe London's blog and having seen her ask the question 'How has blogging changed your life', I felt inspired to write my own post on the subject!

Firstly, I have to say that even though it's fairly obvious, I'm not a 'big blogger' and I am forever constantly grateful for the opportunities I DO receive through blogging. I've blogged for almost four years now and love having my own little corner of the internet - but it has taken hard work to get my blog where it is. Maybe reading this post might inspire some of you new bloggers to carry on and not give up! When I first started blogging I'd often ask if there was much point in blogging when so many people seem to do it these days. I'd read other blogs and feel jealous at all the glam events these girls got invites to and wonder why it wasn't me. In fact, I still feel like this sometimes now.

But I'm so glad I never gave up. Someone recently reminded me that I've been running this blog for so long - updating continually, putting in time and effort - that it would be a huge waste if I was ever to give it up. I felt proud when they reminded me of this, proud that I'd stuck with it for such a long time! 

I truly believe blogging has changed my life.

I've had some amazing opportunities that have no doubt come about simply from running Inspire Magazine Online. In fact, when I first started writing this blog, I wanted to be a journalist of some form and was studying Magazine Journalism at university. This blog has probably led on to more opportunities than having that degree. From attending a free Spa Day and having the best massage of my life, to being able to interview one of my all time favourite bands, I'm definitely a lucky lady when it comes to blogging opportunities.

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Bloggers & staff at Atelier Salon, St Albans, for a blog event earlier this year
Blogging has a glam side too! Yes, we often complain about how tough blogging can be. It's not easy trying to constantly think up new content, research posts, take photos, write the actual posts and then actually promote the posts. It's definitely not easy when you choose to work with companies and give yourself deadlines, or when you throw in networking (online and offline) too. But, it's always worth it in the end. Having freebies like make up or clothes has saved me so much money in the past, and being able to attend glamorous events has helped me create memories I'll never forget.

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Blogger friends! LisaBexCharli, myself anTanya at the #LDNBB meet last year
Quite possibly one of my favourite ways that blogging has changed my life is the friendships I have forged through blogging. Two of my closest blogging buddies, Bex and Lisa, are two friends I have made for life through blogging and even though Lisa lives about a five minute drive away from me, without blogging I never would have met her or Bex. This means not only do I usually always know a friendly face at any given blog event, but we also try to get together for lunch or a movie night when we can!

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And finally, much like Zoe, it's given me a certain kind of confidence that has followed around and helped me feel more comfortable in my own skin. To browsing other blogs for fashion advice and therefore helping me become more fashion savvy, to talking about parts of my life that I'd never even talk to my friends and family about - what I have put IN to this blog, I've most definitely gotten back. It's benefited me in ways I never knew how.

So we may not be the biggest or most famous bloggers out there. We don't get all the opportunities under the sun, and it can be bloody hard work...but we do it anyway. Because we're passionate. Because we like to inspire others. Because blogging has changed our lives.

Has blogging changed your life? Let me know!

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Friday, 10 October 2014

GIVE ME WHAT I WANT // A LITTLE SEASONAL PAYDAY WISHLIST...

I'm trying to be really good with my money lately by not splashing it all on nights out and things I don't actually need - and for the most part I think I've done pretty well. The things that I HAVE splashed out on have been travel for gigs and random adventures - aka the type of memories I'll always remember.

So since I've been so 'smart' with my money, it's no surprise I'm already eyeing up a lot of things I want to buy one payday comes around. Here's what I'm lusting after at the moment...

Inspire Magazine Online - UK Fashion, Beauty & Lifestyle blog | Give Me What I Want // A little seasonal payday wishlist...; Inspire Magazine; Inspire Magazine Online; Wishlist; Seasonal Wishlist; Over the knee tights

I think these over the knee tights are super cute and perfect for the party season. Since treating myself to a couple of pairs of new boots, I've been eyeing up lots of funky knee high socks and tights with cute designs like the one above. These tights are really simple but cute and would be perfect paired with a plain black dress over Christmas - or Halloween. The glitter makes them stand out whilst staying classy at the same time.

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These snowflake necklaces are absolutely adorable for winter! I remember when I was a teenager I'd always go Christmas shopping in Milton Keynes with my best friend and every single time - without fail - we'd stop in Claire's Accessories and buy lots of over the top corny Christmas jewellery, like Christmas tree earrings that would light up. These days I still love to wear seasonal jewellery but I'd like to think I've toned it down a little since then. These delicate necklaces are so cute and stylish and I love the pastel colours that they come in. I can't help but think they'd look gorgeous worn with a fluffy Christmas jumper on a crisp winter morning. They also look like they could be ideal as a little present for someone too!

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This ombre stripe scarf would be the perfect addition to any outfit this winter. I've recently treated myself to a lovely new winter coat and have been on the look out for a scarf that goes ever since. This scarf has quite a few subtle winter colours, which I think means it'll no doubt be very versatile. It also looks super thick too which means hopefully it'll keep me really warm. Looking at this, I can already see all the outfits I can build around it - lots of layers, thick socks and a pair of chunky winter boots. Perfect.

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Look at all the pretty colours! A while back, I was always hooked on my winter nails collection from Models Own, loving all the subtle browns and greens. But this year I think I'm going to go a bit more bold with my nails and this set could be just the answer. The beautiful colours are perfect for whatever the occasion - work, a Christmas party etc and there's even two double ended polishes to help create some stylish nail effects. For such a little set you really do get a lot of choice and even though it's a 'festival collection' I think it's just right for a seasonal one too. 

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I also really, really need a new winter bag and so I'm just putting this out here - I kind of want this for Christmas. The colours are super cute and versatile, it looks really high quality and it's just so, so cute. I don't think anything more needs to be said...

Well that's my payday wishlist, a collection of items to help me prepare for these cold winter months that are on the way. If you like anything you see, just give the image a click and do let me know what your favourite item is with a quick comment!

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Wednesday, 8 October 2014

A BURST OF COLOUR FROM A SELF INFLICTED STATIONARY ADDICT

So I don't go to university anymore, meaning gone are the days where I'd adore picking out brand new stationary with an air of positivity about me, preparing for the new school year. I work in retail - in a shop - so I don't need to take down notes in regards to my job. Yet I CAN'T STOP buying new notebooks. I've always been like this. Show me a quirky or colourful notebook, anything with an edgy saying on the front or a funky pattern and guaranteed, like a magpie attracted to anything shiny - I will buy it. Despite having no use for notebooks at all (and certainly no use for the many I already own) I cannot stop myself.

It's gotten to the point where I actively have to avoid places like Paperchase unless I have a specific reason to go in and buy something...

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Inspire Magazine Online - UK Fashion, Beauty & Lifestyle blog | A burst of colour from a self inflicted stationary addict; Notebook; stationary; Inspire Magazine; Inspire Magazine Online
Inspire Magazine Online - UK Fashion, Beauty & Lifestyle blog | A burst of colour from a self inflicted stationary addict; Notebook; stationary; Inspire Magazine; Inspire Magazine Online

My latest purchases - this 2015 diary (yes, I know, it's far too early for me to be buying one of these) and this 'I'm in love with cities I've never been to and people I've never met' were both found in TK Maxx, that glorious isle filled with odd bits and bobs. I'd love to use the notebook for any travel plans as I adore the quote on the front! Maybe this will help me to get my bum in gear and start saving?

Likewise, there's something kind of scary about buying a pretty notebook, opening it to reveal the crisp white first page...and wanting to do something amazing with the first page of a new book. It's the perfect opportunity to get your creative juices flowing, but the pressure to write something that lives up to the oh-so-pretty cover can be almost mind numbing!

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Are you addicted to pretty stationary like me? Let me know!

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