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UK based fashion marketing graduate and blogger. Vegan. Own too many jackets. Always planning the next adventure. Stick around for style posts, my latest trips and everything in-between.

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Saturday, 30 July 2016

Style: Vegan Fashion Alternatives

One of the major reasons as to why I stayed veggie and was hesitant about committing to veganism, was leather. I put my hands up and say I love a designer bag. I'm an all or nothing kind of person, so I couldn't call myself vegan and still wear my Pashli bag. I either gave it all up or didn't bother. As you know, I went vegan. So yes, I've said goodbye to all of my designer handbags, shoes and trainers. I was worried about what I would replace these items with. So I started to do a little research into vegan fashion brands, and the results were surprising.

I've found some fantastic vegan alternatives, all it took were a few Google searches. Buying into designer is a little more tricky, but you've got Stella McCartney who offers animal friendly bags, purses, shoes & accessories.

One of the first brands I came across was Matt & Nat. A Canadian brand, they're widely available here in the UK and can be found on ASOS, Topshop and their own website. They're dedicated to using recycled materials, and all of their products are vegan approved. Their designs are seriously dreamy and all have a contemporary feel. I think some people assume vegan fashion is all about hippy trousers and tie dye tote bags, but that's totally not the case anymore! P7240121

Another new favourite, is Wilby London. Again another 'premium' vegan brand, Wilby are devoted to creating sustainable, cruelty free bags and accessories. Using eco-friendly cork, the bags are lightweight yet still have a luxury feel. The particular style I've featured here is the Bailey satchel - the perfect everyday bag and I love the subtle logo detailing with the small charm!

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I think it's fair to say vegan fashion has progressed a fair bit, and hopefully it will continue this way as more and more brands cater for the animal-friendly audience. Oh and as if you didn't need anymore persuasion, Matt & Nat currently have a great sale on!

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Thursday, 28 July 2016

Travel: Island Hopping To Lipari

I've always been a bit of an explorer. Whilst the prospect of a relaxing beach holiday was lovely, I knew I wouldn't be able to sit still for too long. There's only a certain amount of sun lounger surfing I can cope with. So after a couple of relaxing days in Cefalu, we decided to explore a couple of nearby islands.

I didn't realise *quite* how long the boat ride would be. Around 2h30 to be precise, and as it happens I suffer with seasickness. So that was fun. All worth it though, as we got to visit the stunning island of Lipari! The largest of the Aeolian Islands, I wasn't actually sure what to expect! Turns out, Lipari is a slice of Italian heaven. Unspoilt, the island boasts a lovely array of boutiques and restaurants, some of which overlook the harbour which is a stunning little area. 

The day we visited Lipari was probably the hottest day of our stay, and my life. At one point I thought I was going to melt into a puddle on the floor. I even had to dash into a cathedral just to benefit from some shade, and purchase a VERY handy fan. That was the probably the best item I've ever bought. 

Spending a day in Lipari The island of Lipari Visiting Lipari Sicily Why you should visit Lipari Lipari in Sicily Lipari Sicily A blog post about Lipari Visiting Lipari I wore - Top by Dizen Clothing, Shorts by Dr DenimH&M Floppy Hat and an eBay Bag. Minimal clothing was needed and god I'm glad I opted for this super cute crochet top from Dizen and a pair of shorts. 
P7132143 Not a bad view is it? I fell in love with Lipari pretty quickly. I could easily have spent a few days there, it's obvious beauty doesn't tire and it's SO clean. Seriously, not a piece of litter in sight. I loved every second there, and the locals seem to have an obsession with plants which only enhances the island. So many of the houses and buildings there were lined with dozens of potted plants and it looked so cute! I wish our houses looked a little more like this in England, there's just so much character on each and every street. Lipari, I feel we may meet again...

Stay tuned for my next Island hopping post, where we visit an island that smells of pure rotten egg. Yeah that was erm...nice!

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Tuesday, 26 July 2016

Life: Why I've Gone Vegan!

I've gone vegan!

I recently made a huge lifestyle change, yep, I've gone vegan! For those of you that don't know, I've actually been vegetarian for almost 16 years now. I turned veggie around the age of 8, around the time I got my first pet bunnies. It occurred to me from a young age that eating meat was, I suppose, strange. I  loved my pets, I loved animals, so why would I want to eat them? I still maintain that point of view, I'm a huge animal lover and there I was, thinking my vegetarianism was saving the animals and that I was living a cruelty free lifestyle.

Not so much!

Ever researched the dairy industry? Well, I did. And the result of that was my new vegan lifestyle. The cruelty within the dairy industry is astronomical. And it certainly is not how the dairy industry like to make it out to be. There are no cows frolicking around fields with their young. No siree.

As we all know, cows have to be pregnant to produce milk. Cows are repeatedly impregnated and forced into pregnancies in order for them to produce as much milk as possible. They are pumped with antibiotics and all sorts in order for the dairy farmers to get as much milk as they can. And once the cow gives birth to their beautiful baby calf? The calf is ripped away from its mother and sold for meat, and made into handbags. It's as simple as that. The mother cows scream and cry for days, for their young. And once the milk farmer has got as much use out of them as they can? They ship them off to become burgers. What a nice way to repay them!

And did you know that legally the government allow a certain amount of PUS in the milk you drink? Yes, pus. Thank god for almond milk ay. Now this is in NO means slating veggies at ALL, I was one for most of my life! I'm just thankful for my eyes being opened to the dairy industry. 

So how did I not know this!? I'd been blinkered to the cruelty, perhaps I'd even avoided it, as to make my lifestyle easier and I guess, more convenient. But after becoming exposed to various footage and imagery it was too much for me. You can't unlearn or unsee it. It sparked a radical lifestyle change and I'm now living on a strict (yet much healthier) vegan diet, and I've also stopped using my leather bags and shoes. Goodbye Mulberry bags!

Not only am I now vegan for the animals, but also the planet and for my own health. I could go on, but perhaps I'll save that for another post.

I personally feel healthier, happier and I've discovered a new love for cooking! Ironically, I'm eating a much more varied selection of foods, and experimenting with dishes I would never have previously considered. I'll definitely begin to incorporate more of my vegan lifestyle into this blog, from fashion to food. I don't want to come across as 'preachy' or argumentative, as I know that's how a lot of people view vegans. I would much rather simply share my views, the facts, and top tips in a polite and friendly manner! And I hope you all won't mind that.

In the meantime, if you're pondering veganism, or simply want to learn more - I recommend giving this video from Gary Yourofsky a watch...
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Sunday, 24 July 2016

Travel: A Week In Cefalu Sicily

If you follow me on Instagram you *might* be aware that I recently spent a week on the Northern coast of Sicily, in Cefalu to be more precise! Charlie and I packed our bags and headed off for some MUCH needed sunshine. I adore Italy, it's always one of my first choices for a holiday and I couldn't wait to find out what Sicily would offer us.

Initially I was worried that I would keep trying to compare it with the beautiful Amalfi Coast, but I needn't have worried as Cefalu is simply beautiful! And after a 6 hour flight delay (cheers, Thomson) we finally made it to our hotel at 5am. Tired wasn't the word!

We stayed at the Cefalu Sea Palace, but I'm going to blog about that in a separate post so for now I thought I'd round up what our seven days in Sicily comprised of! Clue: lots of lounging, eating and sunning. 

Cefalu Sicily Blog Post 7
We spent our first few days beaching about and admiring our surroundings. We were both feeling pretty burnt out so it was exactly what we needed to recharge our batteries. The weather was gorgeous, 33 degrees, bright blue skies and glistening sunshine! We had a couple of cloudier days but even with clouds, this place is simply stunning.

The town itself was just a 5-10 minute walk from our hotel on the seafront. There were tonnes of restaurants to choose from, plenty of bars and some lovely independant homeware and clothing boutiques. Not a chain store in sight - just perfect!  I was actually quite worried being vegan that I would be living  off bread and chips for a week, and whilst I ate PLENTY of bread it was surprisingly easy eating vegan. Some restaurants even advertised that they have vegan options available, which was a huge relief! I even found vegan ice cream so there you go, and yes it was delicious! IMG_9120 Cefalu Sicily Blog Post 2
Dreamcatcher Bracelet Stack from Essentia Collection* Cefalu Sicily Blog Post 8 Cefalu Sicily Blog Post 5 Cefalu Sicily Blog Post 9 Cefalu Sicily Blog Post 4
Every corner we turned there was another pretty street to explore, it's such a picturesque location and I didn't see one 'bad' part.  One of my favourite places to chill and enjoy a big bowl of pasta was outside of the Duomo . A roman Catholic church  which you're free to have a mooch inside during the daytime. It had a really lovely vibe  and  in the evenings some of the restaurants had live music and pianists which added to the charm of the area. cefalu sicily blog post 14 Cefalu Sicily Blog Post 13 Cefalu Sicily Blog Post 11
Kaftan - Monsoon (now on sale!)*Cefalu Sicily Blog post 12
For me another major appeal for Cefalu, is that it isn't overly touristy. It still has an authentic feel and most of the locals and restaurant staff speak little to no English. A fair amount of the holidaymakers appeared to be Italian, so it looks to be a popular holiday destination for those that live in the mainland and the nearby city of Palermo.

Stay tuned for my full review of our hotel, plus a blog post all about our island hopping to Lipari and the island of Vulcano! Yes, we actually managed to drag ourselves away from the beach for a couple of days...

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