31 December 2015

New Year's Essentials 2016+How to Keep Resolutions

Hi guys! Currently, it is New Year's Eve where I am and I'm very excited! A new year means a fresh start and lots of new opportunities! So it's time to make the most of it! Write down your resolutions so you can achieve great things throughout the year and celebrate! I have a few recommendations for products to buy to prepare for the new year so grab a blanket and cosy up for a blog post!

My first recommendation is the SprinkleofGlitter Diary for 2016! I absolutely love this diary! The design of the pages and cover are gorgeous! I love the unique style of the diary! I think it's great that there is an activity on the left page and normal diary pages on the right, it adds an extra something to your normal every day organisation! There is a great space for writing your new year's resolutions and the best thing about this feature is that it reminds you halfway through the year to look back on them! This is great because if you haven't done so well in the first half of the year, you can still have a go!

My second New Year's recommendation is the Chocolate Box Secrets book by Cathy Cassidy! It follows on from her book series but you don't need to have read her series to have this! I also love the design of this book, just like the diary but I also love how creative it is! This book has DIY projects, recipes, tips and more fit for every season! I love that there are projects for you to do whenever you are bored during the year! Seasonal arts and crafts are my favourite to do because they are great ways to celebrate the passing of the year!

Now it's time for my tips on keeping resolutions! I know how hard it is to keep resolutions but this year I'm determined to keep at least one of them! These are quite simple but hopefully they'll work for you!
Tip #1. Reward Yourself:
Sometimes all you need is a bit of motivation! How about reward yourslef for milestones in achieving what you want in 2016? Rewards include things such as treating yourself to something you've eyed for ages, watching one of your favourite programs (that would be Friends for me), meeting with a friend or something that sounds totally great to you! Remember this reward shouldn't clash with your goal. For example don't treat yourself with some gummy bears when you've been doing so well with your healthy eating/exercises. This would just tempt you back into your old routine.

Tip #2. Keep on Track:
This sounds SO obvious but it's an important one! Don't miss your chance to do well for your resolution. What I mean is if you have a schedule for your resolution (for example do gentle exercise once a day) don't skip a slot unless you need to. Even if you persuade yourself that you can do it the day after, it is very tempting to give up something once you have had a break. Think about how you feel after a school holiday, you don't want to go back do you? It's like this when you have a break from the progress of your resolution!

Tip #3. Come Back to Your Resolutions:
Like I mentioned in the recommendation section, I think it's great that in the diary it gives you a chance to look back at what your goals were! Even if you don't have the diary, you should do this! This is because you get reminded of what you wanted at the start of the year so that if you didn't do so well, you can still try your best to have a come back! This doesn't just have to be in the middle of 2016 either, it can be several times through the year! Also, to help you even more you could write where you're going wrong with your resolutions (i.e if you have a trouble with keeping to schedule or if you get distracted) and any other small goals you have to be even better at this!

I hope this post has been helpful for you! Have a great new year and achieve everything that you want most! Let me know what your new year's resolutions are in the comments and let me know if you have the two products I mentioned in this post! Remember to just have fun! Happy new year! :D

18 December 2015

How to Draw an Elf

This picture is a link to my tutorial on How to Draw an Elf on scratch! Click on it to see howto draw the picture above!I hope you enjoy this Christmas drawing tutorial! Check out my other projects on my scratch profile! Also, if you like this drawing tutorial, you should check out this studio of all my tutorials!

06 December 2015

3 Gift Ideas for Girls

Hi guys! Christmas is just around the corner and I know that a lot of you are in need of some gift ideas...and fast! So today I'll be showing you 3 great gift ideas for girls. I've decided to stick to the gifts I know best so this post is only for girls that you need to buy for but you can easily change some of these ideas to suit anyone you know! Here are the ideas:

Idea#1: Gift Sets: Gift sets are an easy yet ever so good way of getting a gift for a special girl in your life! I particularly like gift sets from LUSH because not only are they beautifully packaged and full of surprises, but they also have a wide range of different prices so you can spend as little or as much as you want! If you would like a slightly different gift set you can find loads of beauty gift sets in Boots, so it's worth a look!

Image result for filled jar gift hot chocolateIdea#2: Filled Jars or Baskets: I see jar and basket gift ideas all over pinterest when searching for gifts! They may be a very common gift to give but they be easily personalised to suit whoever you give them to! If they have a hobby (such as baking, art or beauty) you can build the gift around that! For a baking jar/basket you can fill it with icing, cake decorations, cookie cutters, baking tools, cake mixes or whatever you think they would enjoy! For an art themed jar/basket you could fill it with high quality pens/pencils/paints, artist rubbers, good paintbrushes, chalks/pastels, sketchbooks (depending on what you use-jar or basket), etc.  For a beauty enthusiast you can fill the jar/basket with lipbalms/lipsticks/lipglosses/liners, mini eyeshadow palettes, eyeliners, etc. Another idea for filling jars or baskets is to chose a colour and buy anything and everything of that colour! It could be their favourite colour or perhaps red and green (for Christmas)! Yellow is a popular colour for the jar/basket filling because it symbolises happiness. If you can't think of a theme, why not do a hot chocolate jar with hot chocolate mix and toppings?
Image result for book
Idea#3: Book Package: If you know someone who loves reading then you can create a book package for them! Start by buying them a book that you don't think they will have (or one they have asked for) and then build the gift around that! You could buy or make them a special bookmark and slip it into the book for a surprise! Another idea is to put a set of slim sticky notes on top of the book before wrapping it so that when the receiver opens it, they can see them and use them to mark important parts of the story! As an extra gift, a gift card to a book shop could be put inside the book with a little note so they can buy more books! You can look for quirky reading accessories in many highstreet shops that a bookworm would love, so have a look around to see what you can find!

I hope I've helped you with my 3 gift ideas for girls! Let me know what you are giving to people at Christmas so we can all share ideas! What is your favourite idea from this post: 1, 2 or 3?  I'll be posting more things for Christmas in the upcoming weeks so keep checking back!

PS: Do you like my new Winter template? I'll be changing it seasonally! :)

31 October 2015

What to do When You're Bored on Halloween

I was recently looking at my blog stats and I noticed that my 'What to do When You're Bored' post was the 5th most viewed post and this got me thinking! Why not do a Halloween edition of What to do When You're Bored? Since most of you wanted to see a seasonal post, this is what I decided to do!
     Imagine this, it's October 31st and everyone is in a hurry getting ready for the evening, cooking up a spookily delicious meal and decorating the house. It's so busy that you're told to entertain yourself for a few hours before everyone arrives for a frightfully brilliant party. Well what do you do now? You're very bored and just can't wait for the evening so you decide to look for ideas. Now you've found a list with everything you're looking for and here it is! Take a look:

.Watch a movie-this one may be pretty obvious but it really does help pass the time, remember to look up if they are appropriate for whoever's watching! Here are some of my recommendations:
-Hocus Pocus
-The Corpse Bride
-Caspar the Friendly Ghost movies
-Little Vamprire
-Hotel Transylvania
-Monster House
-Edward Scissorhands
-Harry Potter series?
-Shaun of the Dead
-The Witches

.Read a book-you may not get through these in one day, but reading a spooky book can really get you in a Halloween mood. I strongly recommend the book Scarlett Dedd, it's absolutely amazing, I could hardly put it down! It was just the right mixture of creepiness and humor, perfect for young teens! Once you've read the book, you should totally check out the blog that goes along with it, it's part of the story! Instead of reading this, you could always try a classic one such as Dracula or Frankenstein or perhaps read a few short ghost stories?

.Make something-this one involves a bit of creativity and skill but you could always make something for Halloween! Decorations are a great idea, you could try making orange and black bunting, hanging decorations (such as bats), a spectacular centerpiece or something else of your choice! There are tons of tutorials online ranging from very simple to extremely difficult but you could just use your own ideas that include materials you already have!

.Bake something-if there's room in your kitchen, this idea is so fun for you to do! Grab a few ingredients and a recipe then hit the kitchen! Why not bake cupcakes, biscuits or create some snacks? It's all about the fabulous decorations! You could create spiderwebs or pumpkins on some of the cupcakes or turn gingerbread men into mummies, skeletons, vodoo dolls or zombies.Your bakes make great party food if you're planning to have family or friends around in the evening!
Image result for ghost
.Write a short ghost story- You don't have to be the best writer to do this, all you need is a bit of imagination and time! Surely Halloween is the best time to do this? For inspiration you can read a few stories online or perhaps find some eerie images that give you some ideas.

.Create a monster- This activity can be changed to fit what you feel like doing. You can either draw or make your own monster using whatever you have at home. Be as creative as you like and once you've finished you could even write a story or poem to go with it or post a tutorial on your blog (if you have one) on how to draw or make it! Inspire others to do the same! You can then display it with pride at your party or simply in your own room! If you still have more time, you could make a few!

.Read my Halloween posts- If this isn't self-promo, I don't know what is ha-ha! Anyway, in the past I have published several posts at this time of year that offer inspiration for a fiendishly fabulous time, Here are the links to... the 'Halloween Costume Ideas 2015' post, the 'How to Create Zentangle Inspired Artwork' post, the 'Halloween costume ideas' post (from last year), the 'How to Draw a Mexican Day of the Dead Skull' post and the 'How to Make Halloween Glasses' post for you to check out. Not only will reading these posts kill some of your time, it will also provide handy tips that you may need for the frightfully fun day!

.Create small gifts- If you're having a Halloween party at your house or you're going to one, it may be a good idea to put together small gifts for guests in the time you have during the day. Why not make bookmarks, mini purses, monster models (from the Create a monster section earlier), small accessories or something else that you can adapt to be Halloween themed. If you aren't that creative, you could always go on a mini shopping trip to put together bags of small treats!

.Decorate-This might not be a job for you but if you're allowed to, you can decorate the house before anyone arrives! This is such a fun thing to do and can get you really excited for the festivities! If you can't decorate the whole house on behalf of your family, you could just decorate you own room! My ideas for decorating are:
-Put up your own spooky drawings on the wall to show off your artistic skills
-Use a large black bin bag as a creepy tablecloth for your snack table
-Put fake spiders (with their webs) in the corners of the room
-Swap your ordinary lightbulbs for coloured ones to add a creepy feel to a party room
-Cut eyes into empty loo rolls and in the evening, put glowsticks in them. Hide these in nearby bushes to scare passers-by!

-Put colourful sequins on the table to add a splash of colour
-Find hanging decorations in specialist stores and hang them around the room
-Place candles (skull shaped ones of Autumn scented ones) on empty surfaces
There are so many decorating ideas that you can find online, those are just the ones I use! Don't forget to decorate the front door to let Trick-or-Treaters know you've got treats for them!

That's it for my ideas on how to stay entertained on the day of Halloween this year! I hope you've enjoyed my tips and found my recommendations helpful! Have a great Halloween! Here's a question for you to answer in the comments: what are you dressing up as for Halloween this year? I'm dressing up as a creepy broken doll! Remember to check out my Halloween costume ideas post from last year if you still don't know or my new 'Halloween Costume Ideas 2015' post with guides on how to wear the costumes too! :)

PS: Have you seen my new blog template? I've chosen a new Autumnal background and colour scheme! I may change my template along with the seasons! Pineapples were for Summer, leaves are for Autumn and then there'll be templates for Winter and Spring later on! Tell me what you think of the new look!

PPS: Please vote in the poll, that is going on at the moment, on the right side of my blog screen! It ends very soon!

27 October 2015

Halloween Costume Ideas 2015

If you haven't already decided on a costume for Halloween (either because you have no clue or because you like to go last minute), then I've got your back! Today I'll be giving you some slightly creepy costume ideas which can be put together with some of the items you have at home and some cheap props from a quick shopping trip! This post is a mixture of my ideas from last year (but with extra tips on how to wear it) and some new ideas.

.Coraline- a blue wig, yellow coat, red top, jeans and wellies are all you need to be Coraline for Halloween! You can get cheap wigs from pound stores at this time of year or you can purchase a blue coloured hairspray to go on your own hair! You'll probably already have a red top, jeans and wellies (they don't HAVE to be yellow, people will still get the idea). Hopefully you'll have a yellow coat like Coraline, but if you don't you could either buy one or just wear a yellow jumper/cardigan instead! Why not get your Mum or friend to dress up as the Other Mother or a different character from the film too?

.Broken Doll-This year I'm dressing up as a broken doll! What's great about this costume is that  can easily be changed and look just as good even if you don't have all of the clothes/makeup listed! For the outfit you should have any dress, preferably one that reminds you of strange dolls (perhaps a floaty of frilly one). For the hair you can either do 2 plaits or ringlets (for an obvious look) or slightly messy hair that you leave down (for an easy hairstyle). For the makeup, either use pale foundation or face paint to look like a porcelain doll then use pink blush and lipgloss to add a girly look. Apply lots of mascara/fake eyelashes and use white eyeliner on the bottom of your eye to make the appear bigger. At this stage, if you really want to look scary, you can put red eye shadow under your eyes and then use drops of fake blood over it, to make the doll look like it is crying blood (this stage is not necessary, it just depends on the look you are going for). The main stage for makeup is to draw a crack on the cheek so that people know you are a BROKEN porcelain doll. You can do this using black eyeliner and filling it in with black face paint. Remember you can miss out some stages and add in your won ideas depending on how much time/materials you have. To top of the look draw some joints on your shoulders, neck and knees with eyeliner and make it look realistic with brown eye shadow to create shadows!

.Zombie-To create a last minute zombie look first start by putting cuts in old or cheap clothes that you won't want to wear again. You can also put fake blood on these clothes if you have it (remember to choose the right one for fabrics). For the makeup use pale foundation/facepaint, like in the broken doll costume, and contour your cheek bones with green/brown toned eye shadows. You should also use the same makeup to create large dark circles under the eyes for the undead look. You can also put fake blood around the mouth (use a different one than the one you used on your clothes) for a gruesome feel. Remember to make your hair messy and don't do any special hairstyles, you could backcomb it instead!

.Sugar skull- To be a Mexican sugar skull, you'll need lots of face paint, you can buy this from pound shops or costume shops for small prices! Look up designs online for inspiration however, sugar skull designs are all unique so there isn't one way to do it. But typically, there are flower petal designs around the eyes and teeth lines on the mouth along with swirly patterns on other areas of the face. The outfits can really be anything, a great accessory for he outfit is a flower crown (preferably ones with marigolds on them, but you don't have to). I was a sugar skull last year and it was very fun, however isn't as scary as other costumes, which is good if you don't enjoy horrific outfits. This look is very trendy too!

.The Joker- All you need for the Joker costume is face paint/makeup, a green wig/hairspray, and purple and green clothes! The joker may be a male character, but you can still dress up as him if you are a girl! This twisted villain is a great costume for Halloween that shouldn't take you too long to put together! For the makeup you should use white paint or extremely pale foundation for the base colour (you don't need to put it on the neck, just the face) then black face paint or black eyeliner and eye shadow for around the eyes and creases in the forehead. For the lips you can either use red face paint or lipstick depending on what is available to go on the lips and to be smeared along the cheeks. The real joker wears a green and purple suit, but if you don't have this already (mos people won't) then you can just wear any purple and green clothes (such as a purple dress/top and green leggings). To top off the look wear a green wig or spray your own hair green.

I hope I've helped you decide on what you'll be wearing this year (or given you inspiration for next year). Still need ideas? Check out this post then with some extra ideas,! Let me know what you're dressing up as for Halloween this year in the comments below! I'd love to here what you're going to be and how you're creating the look! It may help other people to decide on theirs! Have a great Halloween!

PS: I've dressed up as all of these costumes from the post (apart from Coraline who I'm planning on dressing up as next year, or perhaps the other mother instead).

PPS: I hope you like the new look of my blog! Also, please vote in the poll that is going on at the moment! I'vce already done several seasonal posts because people requested it!

24 October 2015

How To Create Zentangle Inspired Art

 Today I'll be showing you how to create zentangle inspired art. I call it zentangle inspired art because it isn't an actual zentangle but it includes similar elements such as intricate patterns (but only here and there). The drawing style zentangle was originally created as a meditating method to relax you. It's true that drawing detailed pictures can calm you down, however I do zentangles because I love the overall affect of this technique. In this post I'll be showing you my practice exercises that I do before starting this type of art. I hope I help!

To start off, I drew elements that I wanted to include in my drawing. This can really help because you can get used to drawing things you have never drawn before (this was my first time drawing bats, as you can tell :P). Also, this is your chance to adapt your drawing style. This really is the time to experiment! I had fun creating spooky faces on the pumpkins, skulls and ghosts! You can try different shapes and sizes to create a new look! My top tip is to put ticks and crosses next to your doodles. This doesn't necessarily mean you will include them in your final piece, it just says to you whether you like the way it looks or not. In one way, this practice page helped me to decide what I was actually able to draw in my last piece because I then knew that I didn't want to include ghosts as I couldn't get it right.

The next stage of the drawing process was another practice page, this time it didn't go into so much detail. It just had a few practices of each technique until I got them right. To create this practice page template, I just drew a few small boxes. From then on, I started drawing Halloween patterns in them and decided whether they were good or bad. To fill the space I did a quick practice of the main drawing, a little witch. I did a colour test on the doodle to see what worked best together.

It was then time to start the real thing! I kept looking back at my practice pages that proved to be very helpful! I used the elements from the first exercise to fill the spaces at either side and the pattern page to fill the little witch. There were some extra doodles on here that I didn't practice. If you are having trouble coming up with new ideas for your drawing, you can search keywords on google images such as Autumn, Halloween or spooky. Remember! You should only be inspired by other artist's work rather than copy them; you want to create a unique piece that you can be proud of! Now you can either leave your zentangle inspired art black and white (this is traditional) or you can continue onto the next stage like I did...

The final (optional) step is to add colour! This is where the colour test comes in. I looked back at my colour test and made a new colour scheme with different shades that I thought worked well together. This is a Halloween picture so I tried to include , orange, black, green, purple and metallic colours to give a spooky feel to the drawing. I made a gradient of dark purple to pale blue for the early evening sky. I scattered hundreds of little silver stars over the sky to make it look magical. I love the overall effect of this picture; I poured hours of my time into it and I feel it's worth it! I hope this has helped you to gain new skills and think about practicing in a different way. Let me know in the comments what you have created with my tips and what other drawing posts you would like to see on this blog!

PS: Don't forget to vote in my poll to tell me what type of post you want to see soon! If you voted for a seasonal post, (as well as this one) you'll see plenty in the next few weeks!

21 October 2015

Back to the Future vs Reality

Today is the FUTURE! Well, according to the film Back to the Future 2. So be excited, by the end of today we should be seeing hover boards, flying cars and self-tying shoelaces everywhere. As a bit of fun I decided to draw a fashion design based around the fashions of this year that the movie predicted and the actual fashions of the year. I took about 2 hours on this design so I thought I would share it with you! 
    To see the labels then click on the picture and it will zoom in. I compared the 2 outfits by describing each element. I used one of the TopModel template books to start me off but I drew everything from clothes to hair. I don't often label designs but for this particular project, I thought it benefited the drawings.
The future may not be as the film intended, but I hope you have a great day anyway! Why don't you watch the Back to the Future films (there is 3) as a celebration? I know this was just a short post but I just wanted to make you aware of the special day and share my design with you! Tell me in the comments what your predictions for the future are-I'll enjoy seeing what you think! :D

11 October 2015

Read With Your Cuppa' #4

Youtuber to watch

SoCrafttastic (AKA Sarah) is a great youtuber for people who love crafting! I know many of my readers are creative people so this is why I recommend her channel. Her videos vary from crafting, drawing, fashion and more! I particularly like her polymer clay tutorials and zentangle videos. I feel like she covers all sorts of projects so many people will enjoy them and learn something new!

Fun Activity
  There's something about baking seasonal treats that feels so fulfilling. I'm enjoying baking gooey cookies (with flavours like cinnamon or chocolate) and crumbles (my fave is rhubarb but I've been making several apple and blackcurrant ones recently). There are so many yummy recipes to try and as Autumn/Winter 2015 takes place, I love to make festive bakes. Check out all my food related posts for new ideas!

Fashion Trend

70s inspired outfits are fashionable right now! This isn't to say you have to go all out wearing vibrant colours and disco outfits, this means you should consider adding subtle touches of the 70s in your outfits to achieve a take on the popular boho look. Think bold prints, loosely flared trousers and rounded glasses as well as other pieces that pull the look together.

Inspirational Quote

Today's inspirational quote is about not giving up. You should always have a positive mindset when taking up a challenge. You learn new things along the way which help you to achieve. If you go through life thinking that big tasks are impossible you'll be missing out, big time. There's so much to discover so go out there and try your very best.

Meal To Try

Pesto pasta bake with chicken and bacon is one of my favourite meals! You can easily adapt this to be veggie by swapping the meat for peppers or other veg, it's still delicious! The simple recipe is this:
1. boil the pasta whilst you fry the chunks of meat
2. drain the pasta
3. mix the meat and pasta together in a dish with pesto
4. cover with grated cheese and mix again
5. grill the pasta bake
You can find more detailed recipes online but that's the basic method! I sometimes add yellow peppers for depth, but I love it either way!