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A Little About Me

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Tilly-Jayne Kidman, Cambridge based style & travel blogger. By day I do all things digital marketing and by night I write this blog as well as contributing to other publications. You can also find a few tips and posts on veganism among my usual style & travel features!

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Saturday, 21 January 2017

A Weekend In Edinburgh

This post is a little overdue but better late than never?!

So last month Charlie and I took a festive trip to Edinburgh, this was my first ever trip to Scotland (bad, I know!) and I wasn't entirely sure what to expect. I'd had Copenhagen in mind for a festive trip but life was a little full on for both of us so we settled on staying in the UK for ease. I booked train tickets with Virgin which I think cost around £80 each for return, isn't it crazy that it's cheaper to fly somewhere in Europe?

After a comfortable 4 hour journey we arrived at Edinburgh station which is bang in the middle of the city and only around a 10-15 minute walk to our hotel on George street. Once we dropped our bags off we headed out for a little exploring, with no solid plans we just mooched and eventually found ourselves at Paradise Palms/Lucky Pig - a veggie restaurant I had heard about through Sarah's blog
lucky pig edinburgh Paradise Palms Edinburgh JUST TAKE A LOOK AT THOSE VEGAN NACHOS. I'd be lying if I said Edinburgh's impressive vegan food scene wasn't one of the reasons I booked our visit and it certainly didn't disappoint. I'm going to post separately about all the places we stopped to fuel up on in another post as surprisingly my vegan posts are actually some of my most popular! I had the vegan hot dog and Charlie had the mac and cheese, we swiftly found ourselves in food comas of pure delight. 
ediburgh trip 6 edinburgh castleAfter a hectic year we were both after a trip that wasn't as meticulously planned as my usual agendas. I eased off the crazy planning and instead we just went with the flow. Our long weekend mainly consisted of eating, drinking, walking and a little shopping too. Whilst our hotel was in the new town (all very Georgian style and modern) we actually spent a fair amount of our time in the old town where there's much more of a traditional feel - bagpipes included. We headed up to the castle and of course stopped off for a few drinks along the way, there's no shortage of pubs in Edinburgh!
edinburgh trip 5 edinburgh trip 4 ediburgh trip 7 I think December is the perfect month to visit Edinburgh, everywhere is SO festive and the Christmas market was super cute albeit absolutely packed! We wandered around the stalls, grabbed a few snacks and just took in the atmosphere. Charlie tried to convince me to ride the ferris wheel but I always feel like they're unsafe and my carriage will just drop off and I'll die. Slightly dramatic? Maaaaybe.
ediburgh christmas market edinurgh trip 3 2 nights felt like the perfect amount of time to explore the city. Among the Christmas market, castle, shops and eating too much we also spent an afternoon acting like total kids in the museum which by the way is actually pretty cool. Camera Obscura is another attraction we took a little visit too, it's kind of like a crazy fun house and a bit odd but all good fun. Edinburgh trip 2
edinburgh street Edinburgh 100% exceeded my expectations and we both had the best weekend, even better that we didn't have the faff of any airports. I can't believe it took me so long to visit but I'm so glad I did! The food and vibes were perfect and it's definitely somewhere I'll be visiting again if only just for another plate of those nachos.

Keep an eye out for my upcoming post on vegan eats in Edinburgh!

Next stop: PARIS!

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Tuesday, 10 January 2017

On Being A January Cliché

I'm a big old January cliché.

This month I joined the gym, yep, I'm one of those eager New Years gym joiners that the regulars sneer at and pass comments over social media on (mainly looking at Facebook, my Twitter is mostly full of supportive sistas). Oh maaa guuud so many newbies at the gym I can't use my fave exercise machine. Zzzzzz.

Yeah, I could have picked a better time to join because boy is it a busy place in January but I'm so over this negative opinion of January resolutions and individuals deciding to make positive changes. 

I've been a gym member before, twice actually. That was when I was a student and had all the time in the world, but now I work full time and run this little thang free time is a reaaaal struggle. This is what mainly held me back from joining, but I'm actually much more interested in taking part in the classes that are on offer as part of the membership package. I've wanted to get back into pilates for ages, and also join a yoga session. Towards the end of last year I was in a haze of exhaustion, I was letting almost all aspects of my life slide and not putting my all into key areas such as my blog which really took a backseat. 

I'm hoping by attending new exercise classes it will get me oomphed up (is that a word?) and motivated again. It ties in nicely with the resolution I made in 2015, and one I hoped to finally pursue this year of gaining a new hobby or two that more specifically don't involve a screen. I spend a LOT of time at the computer, it's my 9-5 and then I get home and switch my laptop on, and then there's the endless Instagram scrolling...

I hope that yoga will enable me to truly switch off, as well as benefiting my health and hopefully helping me to tone up. I don't have massive weight loss goals I just want to feel happier, as healthy as can be and motivated. And I also wouldn't mind looking like Jane Fonda at 79.

So here's to a new 2017 hobby, and hopefully a lifestyle that's a little more centred around exercise and a little less focussed on Netflix binges. Who am I kidding? There's room for both. 
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Saturday, 7 January 2017

December Favourites

Eeek, a few days later than usual but my Christmas haze meant that I totally lost track of what day it was and what planet I was on. Anyway I thought I'd still post as I'm trying so hard to stick to this monthly roundup and it's technically still the first week of January so HEY. 

December all seems a bit of a blur now, a a blur of Christmas films, songs and festive excitement. I'm still in a little post-Christmas blues bubble but here's to hoping I snap out of that soon. My favourites this month include a few lovely gifts I was kindly given for Christmas - so let's have a little snoop...

New Scents - Diptyque Mimosa Spray, Diptyque Orangerie Candle, N.16 Musk & Tobacco Candle

It's no huge surprise I'm a big lover of overprice candles, something my boyfriend has never quite understood but what can I say? A fresh Diptyque candle provides me with unrivalled joy. I was lucky enough to receive both a room spray and new candle for Christmas, as well as a musk & tobacco candle by N.16 which is a really deep masculine scent - my fave. 
zara sale buys Zara Sale Buys

I was doing SO well with my 'no sale shopping' mantra until the Zara sale happened and triggered some sort of chain reaction that brought about even more shopping. GAH. Why is it so hard? So two of my favourite piece I picked up were the gingham top with bell sleeves (see it on my Instagram for a better idea) and the oversized shirt. I'd had my eye on the shirt for a while as I just loved that simple metal circle detailing so when I saw it on the sale rail I swooped like I'd never swooped before. 
new reads New Reads

Is there anything more exciting than researching a new destination? It might be the travel geek in me but I love buying a hard copy city guide! Charlie surprised me with a trip to Paris for Christmas and I've been having a read of the Paris book he popped in my stocking. We'll also be hitting up America for a month this year so I bought a few Wallpaper city guides as they show you the coolest spots with my kind of aesthetic. The Kindle was kindly bought by my boss for a Christmas present so I'll be downloading some of my faves and hopefully reading more this year!

Last month I included Alexi in one of my Christmas gift guides, after discovering them whilst on a hunt for new jewellery brands. The prism necklace hasn't left my neck since I received it, it's such a simple, minimalist piece that can be worn everyday. Alexi are definitely worth checking out if you're after a new necklace, beautiful rings or perhaps a gift! 
harry potter muggle quote print Harry Potter Quote Print

Don't we all just love a bit of Harry Potter? And if you don't, leave. I joke, but seriously I used to be *obsessed* with Harry Potter growing up. I had all the stuffed toys, figurines and god knows what else. Visiting the Wizarding World of Harry Potter (TAKE ME BACK) in 2015 was a dream come true so yeah I guess you could say I'm a pretty big fan. This super cute quote print was a gift from my work Secret Santa and it couldn't be more perfect! 
travel planning scratch mapTravel Scratch Map

I've wanted one of these scratch maps for ages and funnily enough received one for Christmas. I'm no full time traveller (one day maybe...) but luckily enough my partner also loves to visit new places too so I thought it would be fun for us to scratch off all the countries we go to together. Best get booking some more of those flights...cough cough Charlie if you're reading this.
niomi smart book Niomi Smart - Eat Smart

I only recently discovered Niomi Smart, and Charlie must have spyed me perusing her new book in the store as I had a copy wrapped up underneath the Christmas tree! As you'll all know from my frequent tweets (soz), I do live a vegan lifestyle and this book is all plant-based so I'm looking forward to trying out new recipes. I've become much more adventurous in my cooking since turning vegan and actually enjoy it more than ever. I'll report back with any successes! 

What were you loving in December? Feel free to leave a link below.

*this post contains PR samples

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Thursday, 5 January 2017

The Staple Uniform

Bonjour bonjour! Today's look is probably the most accurate representation of a truly 'me' outfit. Frayed hem girlfriend jeans, a simple black knit, trusty New Balance & of course, a chunky scarf to keep me cosy in this blaaady freezing weather we are experiencing right now. I'm sorry for complaining about a mild winter, I take it ALL back.
nica bag 5

nica bag 2 Surprisingly, or maybe not so because come on people get with the times, New Balance actually have a fair few vegan friendly trainer styles. These 420's are definitely my personal faves and plus they're just so so comfy. Oh and they're currently on sale - linked below - wahoo! new balance vegan trainers nica bag 6 Nica Bag 1 Speaking of vegan friendly fashion, I recently discovered Nica. Every single one of their styles is made with faux leather giving you TONNES of choice from their cool, contemporary styles. I snapped this little beauty up in the Black Friday sale, but it's currently on sale via House of Fraser & John Lewis along with a fair few other styles so be sure to take a little look. Here are a few of my favourites:

nica bag 7 nica bag 4Zara Coat (similar) / Zara Knit (similar) / Zara Scarf similar) / New Look Jeans / Nica Bag / New Balance Trainers (ON SALE) / ASOS Sunglasses

The majority of this Zara focussed outfit actually went into the sale so you may still be able to pick up a bargain in store, if not, I've linked to similar products for you to peruse! I feel that's a word I don't use enough, peruse...

Oh and I must give credit to my boyfriend Charlie who suffered in 2 degree temperatures to take these snaps for me, although you did moan about it enough...

More from me soon!
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