Friday, 19 February 2021

Boohoo wins winter

 It's taken me so long to actually write this blog post. 2021 has already been so horrifically stressful that I  have felt incapable of just getting shit done, even when it's stuff I enjoy! But today was a doing day, so I'm getting all my ducks in a line.

I've had 3 posts with pics and no words for quite some time and I've been planning to spread stuff out since I made the decision to get my spending back under control (you will see why!).

 I will have less new stuff to review after these. However, I will keep posting and writing about things generally. I might also do some ootd posts and I have bought a few brilliant things recently that I can wax lyrical about (things that have really been making life better!). I hope this doesn't mean that the items aren't available anymore! Let's finally find out.....

This was shorter than I had hopped but it was also much nicer and softer than I had expected too! It's stretchy enough to pull down and tuck in to jeans, but I think it will come into it's own over the top of dresses and jumpsuits.

Fabulous bell sleeves and great on the old norks. Really like this cardi, it's so comfy. Get your normal size in this one!

I would never wear this with baggy jeans FYI, this is just for the snap! Massive warm lovely jumper. Sadly it seems to be sold out in this blue, but it's still available in black (and they have other knitwear in this fabulous colour!)

It's not particularly soft but it is massively warm. I'd size down in this one, I did and it's still BIG!

Has side splits and cute detailing along sleeves.

I tried a few long cardigans and a lot of them were oddly small.

This one was awesome. I really like this cardigan a lot. I've been chucking it on over the top of loads of things!

It is quite soft and thick, great pockets, knee length and big enough to wrap around yourself. Get your normal size!

I just really fancied an oversized cardi like this one! It's not hugely soft but not full on itchy like some knits are.

Get your normal size or one down - it's properly oversized!

You can probably tell from the photo - I fuckin' love this jumper!

First up I'll say that I wouldn't describe this as a jumper! It's a thick jersey top really, but it's bloody fantastic.

Actually a decent length, but I was always gonna tuck it in. The shoulder pads are awesome. I also have it in black and fully intend to buy the other colour available too..... I have worn both versions at least twice each already!

This is more of a lightweight jumper! Dunno what's turtle neck about it? Annoyingly short in the body but perfect for tucking in......

See what I mean?! Soft and super stretchy. Get your normal size!

I just really wanted a slubby slouchy jumper, but I didn't want it to be oddly short, or look old / damaged, or have a bastard dipped hem! This is perfect.

Thick, loose knit and soft, but heavy enough to fall well. Wish they had it in block colours!

Monday, 18 January 2021

Asos curve review 2021 #1

 New year, same me.

I've had many versions of this jumpsuit in my wish list for aaaggggeeeesss. My favorite was the greenone with black squiggles, but as this one was in the sale and I knew I'd just be wearing it round the house, I just accepted this print. It's super comfy and lovely. Stretch jersey. I got the size 24 because 26 in jersey is nearly always too big for me, but this jumpsuit requires you to pull it over your arse through the neck, so I'd say that it's wisest to get the right size for your bottom half rather than your top. It's got the drawstring waist and batwing sleeves so it won't look accidentally oversized ;)

I have been looking for an autumnal beige coat for quite some time. I wanted to replace an old asos favourite of mine which was falling to bits, but everything seemed to be either very thick or very thin. This one was exactly right and has now officially replaced the old one!

 After reading the reviews about how oversized this is, I sized down to a 22. It's perfect. The sleeves are a bit long but I will fold them up so it's no big deal.

I like how long it is but obviously if you are average height or shorter, this will be a maxi length coat on you. It's worth a punt thought as it's soft, comfy, warm but not hot and has a lovely collar that can be folded up.

I'm a bit obsessed with hairbands at the moment. I tried loads and just kept this one. I know it's cutsie but I care not! Plus it's grey and matches my salt and peppery roots!

This coat is brilliant. If I'd have been looking for a thicker winter coat then this would have been a keeper! It's size 24 and is comfy and original. I really liked the shape and detailing. It is a bit oversized as I'd normally need a 26 in this sort of coat.

It's a more mushroomy colour IRL than it looks on the website, but otherwise it's as you would expect.

This is another coat that was reviewed as being oversized, so I tried the 24. It's actually not that big by Asos standards, but the body is a bit generous. The arms are certainly not oversized though! They were very tight.

If you don't have huge arms like me then this might be a good option, as it's made a of lovely soft thick fabric that has a bit of stretch. Lovely colour and shape too.

Well.... I was warned! I went for the 26 and it's too small on top! Flexible on the waist as it does up with ties on the inside and out, but yeah, small and not stretchy. Also, it's a super muted washed out gold. nowt wrong with that of course, but the photo's on the website are very misleading in that respect! It's lined and if you can find the right size it's actually a lovely dress with a flattering silhouette.

Size 24. I'm super bored of sloping shoulders with seams that are halfway down my arms and dresses that are much bigger on top than on the bottom. That's all I'm gonna say about this one!

I assumed that this would be non-stretch so I ordered the 26. it was way too loose. I'd actually get this in a 22 if I was to re-order it. I wasn't sure if I liked it enough to actually do that though. Maybe I'd love it if it were fitted? It can live in my wishlist for a while!

I liked this a lot, but let's face it - it's a work dress and after almost a year of pandemic furlough and working from home, I just don't need more smart attire! I do look at it and think.... maybe you do need this though? It's soooooo pretty!

I got the 26 and it was a bit generous on top, but not so generous on the hips, so probably best to put up with a looser top if you're big on the bottom like me! It's firm but silky and stretchy. Feels like stretch suit fabric if that makes sense?! Looking at myself in the pics makes me want to re-order it, but I'm resisting because I've gone a bit made in the sales already (you'll see!)

This is the size 24 and it's very generous. I often find this to be the case with this style of stretch dress. I'd probably try the 22 for comfort but the 20 might actually be the best fit. I'm honestly not sure how the model managed to get it off both shoulders as it's certainly designed to just fall off one shoulder!

It's a thin scuba style fabric. Very soft and comfy, super stretchy (as you can see!). I like this though. Nothing better than a dress that is both sexy AND comfy. Of course I don't have anywhere to go at the moment so.... maybe I'll get it in a smaller size in the future?!

Square necks are my jam at the moment, so I was OBVIOUSLY gonna get this jumpsuit wasn't I?!

I couldn't work out what the fabric would be like, so went for the 26 (pictured). Too big! it's sort of rough, textured and stretchy fabric. I could easily have fit the 22 as the 24 I got instead can be pulled on and off without unbuttoning it, but as I'm spending so much time at home I wanted a relaxed fit, so the 24 is ideal.

I love this though. I can literally jump around in it! I can sit crossed legged and bed over and it moves with me. also a good length in the body, so no camel toes to worry about!

Sunday, 27 December 2020

The year that never happened

 I just realised that my blog has been back for over a year! And what a (shitty) year it has been for everyone other than Mr My little blog doesn't get many views but I do it for myself and the wonderful loyal readers I have. I'm grateful for you reading my typo-strewn slightly dyslexic ramblings, thank you for making my hobby feel a bit less bonkers!

So then, this year.... not much to report. Like being on a forced staycation. Thankfully my mental health hasn't suffered too much, but some of my nearest and dearest's have. It's been a rough one for everyone reading this too I imagine.

So I thought I'd just do a little life post to celebrate a year since I rebooted Plump Parsnip.

I'm not going to be one of those people who writes about how much they've achieved during this pandemic. My achievement has been to get through it with my mental and physical health in tact! I slept a lot. I watched an inordinate amount of TV and films. I didn't read a single book! That's not a brag by the way, it's just a fact. My brain has been incapable of focusing on anything for too long. I've spent the year distracting myself from the outside and the strange world we've all been living in. Congrats to those who have done amazing things in 2020. I got dressed most days and I'm counting that as a win, frankly!

P's, I've added links for things I've mentioned wherever possible!

Hottest couple in town.... literally, during Summer!

Let's start with the biggest change in my life this year. I met my partner at the tail-end of last year. Circumstances meant that we locked down together after only having know each other for a few months! I don't think I've ever jumped into something so quickly; I'm so careful about making big decisions. I'm not gonna say I'm boring, but I'm not particularly spontaneous and I'm SUPER sensible. I can't explain why it made sense to me, but to quote an old saying, I felt it in my waters. Of course it was a baptism of fire.... I think it's fair to say that neither of us has ever spent so much time with another person, ever. 

We had a few date nights during lockdown!

Anyone who has been locked in a home with their partner during this pandemic knows that it takes genuine effort and WORK to create harmony, under the immense stress that a complete change in routine brings about, right? That would be true just for one person to be honest, because you're building a completely new framework for the patterns and procedures you've been locked into for decades, but taking two peoples disparate needs into account makes structure even more important.... and difficult! I do wonder if there are even more highs and lows when you're still getting to know each other under such circumstances? It might actually be the case that if you're used to only seeing someone for a few hours a day for years, suddenly being trapped together all day, every day, for months on end, might be even more of a shock to the system?!. All I know is that I've never been so happy to spend so much time with another human being. As much as I love my family and friends, I would be desperate to be alone after just one week with any of them! Funny how two people can be so extremely different (which we absolutely are) but also be so comfortable in each other pockets. And let's face it, if any couple can come out the other end of a year like this and still want to be together, that's a pretty strong foundation for the future, don't you think?

Soppy in the sunshine!

A year of manure has helped love blossom, so as shitty as 2020 has been in (almost.... yey Biden!) all other respects, it will always be a very special year to me. Of course if he ever leaves me I'll have to kill him, 'cause HE KNOWS TOO MUCH NOW!

What else has happened?

My guitars made a comeback after many years in my parents attic. I've had that classical since I was 11, and it still sounds beautiful, even after about 15 years in a chilly attic!

I cooked. Oh I cooked like a demon! It was my furlough salvation..... a genuine salve while I was indoors with nothing to do! I learnt how to make cakes, which I've always been crap at unless Nigella gave me the recipe! We overdosed on vegetable cakes (courgette and lemon, chocolate cherry beetroot, carrot, courgette and chocolate orange) thanks to my fruit and veg boxes. Then we went for a few months with no cakes as we were bloody sick of them! Above is the trifle I made my partner for his lockdown birthday. I couldn't get a jam swiss roll, or custard powder, or fresh cream to whip! So this mad bastard of a trifle was strawberry cream filled swiss roll, strawberry jelly, pre-made custard heated and thickened with cornflour and squirty cream from a can! He still demolished it. I'll make him a proper one next year ;)

We have come back to cake now but with zero veg.... back to nigella and her butter crazed ways! P's, If you use her super simple vegan chocolate cake recipe for the sponges and just replace the dairy in the buttercream frosting from the cake above with plant based alternatives (I used vegan Elmlea and flora vegan unsalted butter.... needs to have a high fat content to work!) then it's still a stunning cake. I liked the original version best but my partner likes the vegan one best because he prefers an oil-based sponge to one made with butter and eggs.... more gooey! I think our perfect version is the vegan sponge with the dairy frosting, but anyway. Moving on!

I fell back in love with jumpsuits. Evidenced by how many I bought this year and reviewed on this here blog!

At the start of lockdown I was working from home. I made sure I dressed and did myself up the way I would were I going into work, because I didn't want to blend work and home toooo much! I also occasionally matched my outfit to my bedroom!

Then furlough struck. I'm lucky in that I'm a real homebird. I love being in my own space, but I do like to be occupied in between the fun, lazy bits! I took the opportunity to do some DIY and tart the flat up a bit. This is a super cool rainbow window film. I hated having a see through window in the kitchen that faces other buildings, so this has fixed that and makes rainbows across the room when it's sunny outside!

Filling gaps in the floorboards?! Action Parsnips.

I've had these bedside drawers for many many years. They were a bit knackered but they're so good for storage, and Ikea don't make them anymore (only smaller or bigger versions!), so I got this amazing sticky backed furniture film and tarted them right up!

I did my big drawers to match. I was happy to discover that Ikea use the same handles for both sets of drawers, so I was able to swap them round and get the pine / white / teal colour scheme on both. I was so chuffed with this, and It cost me less than a fiver!

My wooden wardrobes collapsed this year (hardly a surprise is it?!) So I had to downsize a bit by selling a ton of stuff on ebay. Then I got some more flexible / portable metal ones and one with shelving and I re-organized my wardrobe. It's like living in a shop!

We don't have any outdoor space sadly - hopefully next year we will move, now we know how much that effected us over lockdown - but we went to the park quite a lot. Spent some super sunny hours getting too hot then schlepping home to cool down!

I was also lucky enough to visit my family in July. After a few weeks of isolation my sister drove all the way to London to collect me, and my dad drove me back. It meant I got to have breakfast in my folks garden and enjoy the sun. Bliss!

We had to celebrate my sisters birthday! It was so odd to not be able to hug our friends! 

There was also a trip to Bath, which was sooooo lush! We were of course masked up when indoors btw!

I decided to use lockdown as an opportunity to let my hair dye grow out and go salt and pepper. I've been getting white hairs since my early 20s and I always hated it and felt it made me look so old, but I couldn't buy my hair dye and wasn't going out much anyway, so figured I'd see how I felt about it. The trick was to blend it in a bit with sort of low-lighting sections with my dark brown dye. Each time leaving it on for less time. I haven't dyed it at all for months now and I like it! Hopefully it won't be too long now until it's properly grown out and all of the dye (both old red and old dark brown!) Will be a thing of the past!

When I started work again I realised that I couldn't wear fabric masks on the tube..... I just couldn't breath and felt suffocated! I think it was a panic thing tbh. So nowadays I use a fabric mask when moving about or grocery shopping and when at work, but on the underground I wear disposable ones. Happily I've not got through tons as I've been on site as little as possible, to lessen my time spent on public transport.

It's fair to say that almost all of my interactions with friends this year has been via video calls, so occasional walks with mates have been genuinely exciting. 2020 certainly reminded me of how important socialising is for my general wellbeing. More of that for everyone in 2021 please!

I went low-key on Halloween.....

But randomly went full-on black lipstick the week after! This is Revolution "life on the dancefloor sparklers lipstick" in 4AM, which isn't available anymore sadly, but I reckon the new Jeffree Star Velvet Trap lippy in "Pure Hell" looks SICK and I want it for myself, so maybe if you wanna try a black that's a good shout. I like the one I'm wearing but would prefer a matte one if I'm honest! I already know that I'm gonna order the JS one for myself in a minute.... I went to get the link and now I just can't resist!

I got some of that light tape to stick to the back of my tv. Annoyingly it not only reacts to the remote control that comes with it, but also my TV remote.... so it likes to go a bit disco when I'm moving through the Netflix menus!

I somehow took a selfie while setting up a for a launch over zoom. Skillz.

When December hit I got all Christmassy. I didn't even decorate last year because I wasn't in a good mood and just wanted the year to be over. I didn't know what 2020 had in store for the world did I! I felt it was very important to revel in the festive spirit this year, because there has been so little to celebrate and everyone needed cheer. Plus Christmas for me is all about spending time indoors with my loved ones, eating lush food and watching TV. Basically just lockdown with more fairy lights!

Purchased my first ever white tree and decorated it with copper wire micro fairy lights and poundland trinkets and candy. Bloody love this kitsch little bitch!

Sprained my ankle. Don't ask. no Christmas walks for me!

Put a fleece fitted sheet on the sofa to add a pop of colour

And decided that this December was all about sequins. Seriously.... boohoo plus is sequin heaven right now! This smelt a bit like petrol when it came out of the bag, but it's very easy to chuck on and sparkle in, so I kept it! It's only £12 right now, get your normal size ;)

And then 2020 struck again. My grandmother passed away and although it was expected, it somehow still felt so shocking when it finally happened. It's still unimaginably hard to come to terms with the fact that someone who was such a constant in my life is gone forever, particularly when I hadn't seen her for a year because of Covid. Not being able to get on the train and go to hug my dad was the shitest part of it. She had her 97th birthday this year and we do have a super cute picture of her with her birthday card, but I wanted to show her in happier times when she could still live freely and we could all be together. 

 Dress from Asos Curve. Earrings were a gift, sorry don't know where they're from!

2020 still wasn't finished though was it? Tier 4. All plans cancelled. The first Christmas I've ever spent away from my family. I was very upset. I could have been one of those Londoners that panicked and got out of London the night that Bozo Johnson announced the new lockdowns, but I had no valid excuse to do so. So many people have given up so much this year, I don't need to be risking myself or my loved ones health just because I always go home for Christmas. As utterly shit as it felt at the time, my partner and I both agreed to stay home together.

I dealt with it in my usual fashion. Accept what I can't change and take complete control of the stuff I actually can control. So basically that means get dressed up and start making plans! The sadly unsurprising but still APPALING short notice of the tier 4 stuff obviously left me in a pickle. I'd put a hold on my fruit and veg box and it was too short notice to change it. I had no food in for Christmas and hadn't saved any money for it as we were supposed to be at our families places. I don't have transport, there were no grocery delivery slots available and I had a sprained ankle. Everything was just so much harder than it needed to be. Just one weeks notice would have made such a difference for the whole country. And of course I'm one of the lucky ones..... for those who are already in dire straights this must have been a horrific blow. Yet another Tory government cluster-fuck. ANYWAY.

So then, plans were made. Shopping was done. I was on leave and suddenly it was Christmas Eve! Time to sparkle. I had time to get glam so I got glam! I genuinely love this dress I got from Asos ages ago. It's so comfy!

We watched Home Alone, some Mandalorian, had a fry up and a nice video call with my family. It was a lovely day.

Christmas day rolled around and the sequins came out! I didn't keep the belt on for long because it kept getting wet or dipped in things as I was running round!

I was saving this lipstick for Christmas day. It's the closest thing I've found to Jessica Rabbits lippy. I know there have been actual branded Jessica Rabbit lipsticks 'cause I've tried them, but they were neither as glittery as they needed to be nor the right shade of berry red. This one is bang on the money! And only £6 at the moment.

Christmassy gits!

 I got to spend my first Christmas with my love. I got to cook and eat a big old roast (which I love doing!) and we also formed a support bubble with my old flatmate. Her plans go messed up TWICE, so we all got together to eat, drink and be merry. And watch the new Aladdin 'cause I got Disney+ as soon as I found out about tier 4! It was a whole new Christmas this year.

Boxing day was bed day. This year has been..... well, it's been twelve months hasn't it. You can't argue with that!

I'll see y'all in 2021.