The princess & the pauper

Last week John and I were invited to Europe's largest Thai Restaurant, Chaophraya, in Glasgow for dinner. It's just newly opened, which I was rather excited about because I really like thai food, and you'll all know by now that going out for good food and drinks is something I like to spend my hard earned monies on. I'm a big grubber at heart. I've lost count of the amount of restaurants we've been to since we started dating each other last year, but one thing for sure is that I'm glad we both love our food :)

With a cocktail each in Chaophraya's Palm Sugar Bar beforehand, we had a try of their Thai Tuesdays offer, where you get a free beer or cocktail of your choice when you order a sharing platter. I wish I could remember the name of our drinks, but they were absolutely divine. We went upstairs to the main restaurant for our food, and the sharing platter was a great wee selection if you're not quite sure where to start with the menu - or, if you're like me and just love to have a nibble of lots of different things rather than one massive dish.

We were still a bit peckish after the sharing platter, which was almost like an extra large starter, so then we ordered a rice dish to share. This left us happily satisfied, which is one thing I especially like about thai food - you don't feel overly 'full' after it, always just right. I think the thai tuesday deal would be perfect for before a night out, some nice grub to fill you just enough before an evening of drinking, with the free cocktail or beer to get you started! Shame it isn't on at the weekends, but after our visit we will definitely be going back to have a try at more of their mouth watering menu. I couldn't fault the service either, our waitress was friendly and attentive and offered to explain different parts of the menu (which I think John would have had her standing there all night doing!) The only thing that disappointed me was because we were sharing this spicy rice (and I am a total wuss) I'd asked if the spice could be toned down almost completely, which our waitress was more than happy to do. However upon tasting it was still mega hot. So maybe she had forgotten to pass the details on, or if that was it toned down then I really need to stay away from the hot things on the menu - when they say hot, they mean HOT. But I hate sending things back, so I'll just need to be more careful/clear in my choice next time. 

Being the nosy beggars that we are, when offered a little tour of the VIP dining areas just as we were leaving, OF COURSE we said yes!

Holy moly! Something rather Lord Of The Rings style going on with that second picture isn't there? Those wooden chairs are epic! The old Townhouse building on Buchanan Street is absolutely massive, and from a design point of view they have done a fantastic job of making such a large area feel luxurious but not overdone. That's only 2 of the 4 areas on the upper floor which are available for reservation at no extra cost - just as long as you have a minimum of 8 people and pay £5 deposit per head, which then comes off the cost of your meal. Soooo, who is up for booking soon? I think us Scottish Bloggers should make a wee night of it.

A happy happy picture of me at the end of the night, posing with rosy cheeks and a full belly. I wore my AX Paris Galaxy Dress, Jeffery Campbell Lita's, Studded leather Primark Jacket, and my trusty Mulberry. As I mentioned before, the building is very grand and beautifully decorated, and I think I could have happily worn my plan A dress that night (the above was plan B)

Here is plan A, also from AX Paris. And here is a model wearing it, since I've not had the guts to yet:

I think I talked myself out of wearing this foxy little number because we went for dinner on a week night. But to be honest I would have felt quite good rocking this with some cocktails and my Lita's in the Palm Sugar Bar! Next time, for certain :) One of the waitresses actually complimented my dress, which caught me out of the blue because I didn't feel like I looked as glamorous as most of the woman in there. Why are we of the generation that can't take compliments? Who will always follow up a nice gesture with 'Oh, it's only from such and such', talking down our outfit or how we got it on sale. Why can't we just smile and say thank you? I work hard for my pennies, and when I treat myself I still feel the need to justify EVERY move, every buy.

I feel like I'll always be the guilty shopper even when I know I've been thrifty with my finds. The internet is a wonderful place and I wouldn't have had any of the things I use on a day to day basis if it weren't for a blogger reccomendation or discount code, blog sales, beauty boxes, a link on twitter, or an 'invite a friend!' deal. I can't thank the blogging world enough for opening my eyes (and not damaging my bank account too much) to all the wonders that exist for shopaholics like me. I'll never deny the fact that I got my Mulberry handbag on sale, my Lita's second hand and my discount sunglasses online. I can't take the compliment so I throw up a negative in its place. When really, shouldn't I be proud that I'm of a generation that present independent woman who can treat themselves but be rescourceful about it at the same time? I had the willpower to wait until the handbag I have wanted for years, had £300 off it, reduced from £800 to £500 (okay, hardly a cheap sale, but I felt liberated for achieving that rather than nothing) My grey suede Lita's were bought off of Amanda Hendrick. Okay, second hand, BUT only worn to the Scottish Fashion Awards by one of Scotlands hottest Models, before JC boots were being sold anywhere else in the UK. Why should I feel any less important drinking coffee outside a cafe in the sunny west end, wearing my Ray Bans and ripped jeans but sitting next to an affluent young business woman having a meeting while peering through her Gucci Sunglasses. We've both worked just as hard for our designer shades, and probably both even got them from the same website! ;)

I guess what I'm trying to say is recently life has been teaching me to work hard, but play even harder, and enjoy the fruits of your labor. The next time someone compliments something I know I've worked for, I'm going to try very hard to take it and enjoy it. Be a positive young woman rather than always being full of self doubt. I will end this heart to heart with some recent pictures of a boy who is after my own heart...

♥ ♥ ♥

Ayden x

Sunday Best

Not done one of my sunday best's in a while. I guess this week I am just so grateful to be lying in my bed on a sunday morning, drinking tea, listening to music, replying to emails, and browsing the internet at my leisure with Dexter cuddling next to me (Well, 50% cuddles and 50% gnawing at my elbow) I have really enjoyed this week off, and can't believe I've got another one before I start the next job. Enjoying exercising, date night's with John and lunching with pals far too much. The rest of today will consist of going a run, tidying the flat, and popping a bunch of stuff on ebay. Is this the sort of stuff you love to do on a sunday too? Here's some of what my past week consisted of.

Went to my Dad and Julie's last weekend for Max's 2nd birthday. Cannot believe he is 2 already. It was great to see Lily too and watch her smiling and laughing for the first time. It was a lovely day so we played in the garden, had lots of good food and lots of good chat. It's strange to think that my mum had just given birth to me at this age. Being around my siblings does make me so broody... One day!

I took my wonderful friend Cyrus for a belated birthday lunch to the Three Sisters Bake in Quarriers Village. I actually found out about this place via my mum - she is worse than me for tweeting and posting on facebook lovely meals, cakes and fancy pots of tea. She gave me my love for places like Wholefoods, independent deli's and Farmers Markets. Definitely a mammy's gal right here. Mind you, my Dad has passed on to me a love for motorbikes and despite riding motorcross with him for years, he will not entertain the thought of me and John wanting to get our road bike license next year! Back to Three Sisters - the food was divine and all the cute bits and bobs they had on sale was right up my street. Will certainly be visiting again.

So you probably noticed my new specs in the pictures above? Hello hipster! They look black but are actually tortoise shell, and contain the same prescription as my raybans. Which is actually quite nice having the option of more than one pair of glasses for work etc. I got them from Firmoo, who are actually offering your first pair of eyewear from them for free. All you need to do is pay the shipping. Whats the catch? Well, I guess there isn't one. They have launched this programme to offer free eyewear to first time buyers to get more people to try out their products and service. You aren't obliged to do anything after that. I was waiting on the 'but', or the compromise in quality or delivery time etc but it was seriously spot on. New glasses, great quality and with my exact prescription within a week of ordering. Not bad at all!

One thing I have NOT been saving money on, however, is the beginnings of my autumn/winter wardrobe. I told you, all this clearing out makes space for new things - too dangerous! But this will be me for the next wee while.

Studded leather jacket from Primark.

Army jacket from Topshop.

Knit jumpers from Primark.

Skull jumper from Topshop.

Socks and necklace from Accessorize.

Skeleton hands tshirt from Topshop.

Galactic tee's from New Look.

Fox cushion from Urban Outfitters (had my eye on this fella for ages!)

Rug from Urban Outfitters.

And finally, Ipad - Uh oh! So it seems my buys got less a/w related as the post went on. But now I am an ipad owner I need your suggestions for useful (and more importantly CUTE) apps. I am also on instagram now if you'd like to come say hello - my username is hellorogue. Enjoying an empty flat and a boy free weekend (minus Dexter!) I'm off to indulge in my wonderfully average sunday ♥

Ayden x

A Certain Romance

This weekend marks the end of the longest freelance job I've ever had (9 weeks) and my first time assistant art directing on a feature film. I know it's one of those cliche's, but I feel like I have learned so much about myself during this time. I mentioned it on my birthday in june, but I honestly can't believe how much my life has changed in the past year. Blogging makes it so easy to look back on, as the ins and outs of my life and events are archived into a little list in the sidebar over there. Proof that when life gets nasty and shit knocks you down, you just need to brush yourself off and get back up again. Time is a great healer, and if I hadn't listened to that advice then right now I wouldn't have my flat, the piggies and Dexter, my car, my job, and less material but important things like my health, my sanity (well, questionable!) and I would never have fallen in love :) So anyone who has had a tough time of it lately, including the lovely people who have emailed me, you are never alone and things always get better. Anyways, I've chatted enough and this post is picture heavy so I'll let you get on with it...

Possibly the slowest runner in the world, but I'm still trying! Modelling my fabulous running attire above and my Samsung Hope Relay 'Warm Up and Win' tshirt, after entering their competition. I actually love the park I run through near my house, it's got massive stairs in the middle and I do imagine my own Rocky montage in my head. Anyone else ever feel like you're in a film/music video when going about your day to day life with music playing? No... just me then?

Fiiiinally got my hair done! First time my hair has been all the one colour for as long as I can remember. I always had even my trademark blonde flash from 16, so this is quite strange for me. Enjoying it though, and just want it to keep growing. After an updated hairdo I thought it was time to clear out my wardrobe, sort out more piles for ebay/car boot sale, which of course makes room for some new things.

Necklaces from Topshop.

Vans and Hello Kitty, what a combo! My Mulberry has taken a bit of a battering at work, and I'm always carrying so much around with me so I thought it was time for some back to school sensibility in the form of a backpack.

Topshop sale, £48 down to £20. I love this dress, even though the loveheart boobs are a bit mental (very Katy P!) but it looks quite sweet on, so I just need to find somewhere appropriate to wear it.

Topshop cardi. Actually getting excited about cosying up with clothes for autumn and winter.

Denim shirt from River Island. My flatmate Katrina actually already has this - I couldn't resist copying her!

Skirt from River Island. Picture doesn't do it justice, but I wore it out for dinner last night with John and our friends and it was lovely. Plus, hid my massive food belly after dinner (always a priority)

After eyeing up the Hello Kitty Vans (which are so cute, but a bit too young looking)  I thought these were a better option :)

Stud madness, picked up these shoes from Topshop. They're canvass so hopefully wont fall apart like my leather ones currently are.

I genuinely can't fault the original Fake Bake - apart from the ridiculous price tag.

A favorite which I haven't worn for over a year, thought it was time to get a wee bottle again and see if I still liked it. I do!

Boohoo sent me a hard copy of their A/W lookbook. Are all look books like this? All pretty and bound? I was very impressed! Really lovely images, and lots of great outfit inspiration. I'd say I'd buy about 30% of the items in this book, mostly more staple items as some of their statement pieces are a bit too bold for me. But I was especially loving the dress above, and these fab booties below.

A less spiky take on the Jeffery Campbell Lita's (which Katrina has, and my goodness those boots could do some damage!) These will go with so many outfits in my wardrobe, and are surprisingly easy to walk in, which I was pleased about. This is the first thing I have ever owned from Boohoo but I've heard so much about them and I am seriously impressed with the prices on their website. These boots are amazing quality for £40, and I'd be keen to see if the clothes keep up this standard too. Big nod from me.

I always like to finish on a good note. In this case, Dexter. That's him drinking from his big boy cup. He prefers a glass of water (mostly MINES) over his bowl any day. He hasn't quite mastered drinking from the tap without getting his face wet, but I know he'll get it eventually.

Paw cuddles! I really don't think he knows he's a cat. I know it is the Ragdolls nature, but he is so cuddly and loves people, and is getting on with the guinea pigs really well which I couldn't be happier with. He sits with them as they run about the floor, like a big cat looking after his pack. Cuteness aside, he is so naughty and knows how to wind me up (seriously, he looks at me like he KNOWS) I'm so glad have 2 weeks off now, I need to catch up on some early morning snuggling with this wee fella. Mega recharge of my batteries before I start the next job. Wrap party tonight, and then over to my Dad's for Max's 2nd birthday tomorrow. Have a great weekend whatever you're upto ♥

Ayden x