EVENT: Stella & Dot and Bare Minerals

EVENT: Stella & Dot and Bare Minerals
Last Thursday, the lovely Louise and I mooched on over to St. Albans to check out the range of jewellery Stella & Dot had to show us in a pop up boutique at the local Bare Minerals store. We were invited to have our makeup done and to also take a look at the jewellery for ourselves. Neither I or Louise had ever tried Bare Minerals makeup before and had only recently heard about Stella & Dot as a company, so were both interested to find out a little more.
When we arrived, we were asked if we would like a glass of OJ, champagne or a Bucks Fizz by the extremely lovely Yasemin from Stella & Dot and the nice girls from the Bare Minerals store. Myself and  Louise were then paired off with a makeup artist each to have our makeup done. I only had the basics done, neglecting to wear the mascara and lipstick as I was suffering badly with my hayfever and felt a little rough that day. As you can see though, Louise has the most beautiful lipstick on – it was gorgeous and I may have to make a sneaky little purchase for myself!

~The lovely Louise after her makeunder~
~some of the brilliant products on sale~

The products my makeup artist Rebecca used were from the Get Started Kit which retails at £49 here. It is a little out of my price range right now but I’m definitely thinking about purchasing it in the future or perhaps adding it to my ever-growing wishlist and hope someone buys it for me… *hint hint, Steve*

Like Louise, when I got outside into the natural light, I did look quite bronzed, more than normal, but as Louise mentions in her post here, shops often use harsh lighting and I’m also quite pale like her, so it was destined to happen! I really enjoyed the experience of being given a makeunder – Rebecca took her time explaining each product to me and getting me to apply it myself, making sure I understood how to do it. The girls from the store couldn’t have been more friendly, we received great customer service and they are a credit to the company!

They even took a Polaroid picture of us, which Louise scanned in and used on her blog. She kindly let me use it here too:

Now, onto the jewellery:

How beautiful is it all? I sadly had to resist buying anything as I didn’t get paid until the next day and then lost my bank card, but a few items will definitely be added to my wishlist! Yasemin was incredibly warm and chatty, answering any questions we had and seeming genuinely interested in what we had to say. My favourite pieces would definitely have to be any one of the gorgeous silver bracelets in the second to last picture. I’m a sucker for anything silver and they were all absolutely stunning.

I’ll definitely be buying from Stella & Dot in the future – great products, great staff – who could ask for more? I’m even considering hosting a Trunk Show in the future, as I’m sure my friends would be just as mesmerised by the items available as I am!

You can buy your own Stella & Dot jewellery from Yasemin here.
Interested in more Bare Minerals products? Take a look here.

What do you think of either brand? Had you heard of them before? What do you think of their collaboration?

Guest Post: Taking Chances by Louise

Guest Post: Taking Chances by Louise
My guest post today comes from the gorgeous Louise from Inspire Magazine. I love Louises blog as it certainly does what it says on the tin – it inspires! Louise writes about a variety of different things and I’m glad to welcome her to Futures talking about taking chances – if you’re not taking a chance on anything, then why not?
I’m writing this blog post about how important it is to take
chances once and a while. No matter who you are or what you’re situation is,
it’s always important to push yourself and take a chance every once in a while.
The outcomes could be amazing.
This concept first hit me at the start 2007, not long after
I had started college. I loved my friends to bits but found that I was growing
apart from my oldest friends. Although in college also, it dawned on me that we
had little of the same interests anymore, even though we were still close. On a
whim, I generally decided to start saying yes to everything. It was much like
the film ‘Yes Man’, but more vague. I just realized I wanted more excitement in
my life and decided from then on out I’d stop making excuses for things and
start doing them. And so I did. When friends I hadn’t seen invited me out, I
would have usually have made excuses like it would be awkward because I hadn’t
seen them in so long, or I was already tired and had college early the next
day. But instead of doing that, I started saying yes. It wasn’t a massive
change, but when I recently found and read an old blog I used to write about my
life this year, I realized that 2007 had been one of the best years of my life.
Generally most of it was spent drinking underage at a popular pub in town but I
absolutely loved it. I was going out more, I was making new friends and I was
finally starting to get the hang of dating boys! At 17, I was obviously still a
teenager but it was then I started to feel comfortable in my own skin as well
and gained a massive confidence that year. Reading it back the other day made
me smile so much, even reading posts where I went into great detail about what
I was up to with boys ;)! My life changed a lot that year because by taking
chances, even the tiniest ones, so much changed. 2007 had its lows as well, but
I started appreciating them as well as they taught me so many things as well.
Then when I left for university in 2008, it all changed
again. Firstly, uni was amazing. At freshers week I came out of my shell even
more and had the time of my life! Uni had it’s ups and downs too of course but
overall it was the most amazing experience. One thing I did not expect to
happen at uni though was for me to grow apart from my friends back home. It
really didn’t dawn on me at all. I remember researching and talking to so many
people about university before I left and I got told so much advice. However,
no one ever mentioned the effect university would have on friendships between
you and friends. I wish I had known this because I would have done things
differently. Although I visited home often for the breaks, I usually had so
much work to do or I was just so happy being at home and relaxing that I made
little effort to see my friends.
So after I graduated in July last year, I came home to some
BIG changes. Basically, a month beforehand I was a magazine journalism student
working part time in a bar, living up north with my boyfriend and having a
fairly active social life. Then when I came home it suddenly dawned on me that
now I was a graduate with no job, I was single again, I had to move back in
with my parents and my social life was gone like that.
On my birthday in December, things came to a halt for me
when a bunch of my so called best friend/oldest friends cancelled on my big
birthday night out, making ridiculous excuses to as of why they couldn’t come.
So I decided to refer back to my little ‘say yes to everything’ method and made
some changes at the start of this year. The first thing I did was push the bad
people out of my life. I found this hard because it was my oldest friends who I
had known since nursery who were constantly cancelling on me and not being good
friends at all. I’d let it slide so much because I’d known them for almost all
my life and didn’t want to throw that away, but after my birthday I decided
enough was enough. So whilst I did that, I began making more of an effort with
those friends who I wasn’t necessary close to, but who had always been there
for me. I realize now that they were my real friends all along. I cut contact
with my ex and finally managed to move on from him and at last I am dating
again. I am also for the first time ever enjoying being single! And of course,
I began saying yes to everything!
Since this year and saying yes to everything I have
celebrated New Years Eve in Paris, became close friends to some ‘real’ friends,
gone on some amazing nights out, finally went back up north again – for the
first time since July – to see my uni friends and have met loads of new people.
Over the next few weeks I am starting snowboarding lessons, going on dates,
going paint balling, teaching myself how to play the drums and continuing mine
and my friends weekly date to the cinema and Pizza Express with Orange
Wednesdays! Then, finally, later this year I am going to Bruges and Amsterdam
and next year I am going to Ibiza!
Each and every one of these things has come about by pushing
myself out of my comfort zone and saying yes. Am I scared of going paint
balling? Hell yes! I’m convinced it will be painful and I’ll be very bad at it,
but it’s still something new and exciting.
The first time I took a chance and said yes since graduating
was for an old friends birthday just before Halloween. I would be seeing
friends I hadn’t seen to and spoken to in years and I even had to walk into a
packed nightclub all by myself and sober! I thought I would hate the night. I
thought I’d no longer have anything in common with these old friends and would
therefore run out of things to say, I thought I’d end up tired and wanting to
go home after a few hours and I thought my feet would end up killing me.
Instead I ended up having an amazing night with some really ace friends who I
now have plans with on a regular basis. I met new people that night as well and
I pulled a really lush barman who I ended up making out with up a tree, which
to this day I find hilarious. The only worry I was right about was that my feet
would hurt!
I knew though that, even if the night would have been
boring, I would be happy because I would have pushed myself and taken that
chance to go out. The way I’ve seen it lately is that chances are always a
win-win situation, no matter what they are, no matter how big or small they
are. Taking chances might seem daunting, but no matter what the outcome is,
you’ll always be glad you did it.
I’m so inspired by Louises story. I too am the kind of person who cancels because I’m too tired to go out – and although I have an excuse now in Jack, I used to do it when I wasn’t even pregnant! I’ve decided recently to take stock at my life and agree to more things – and I’m loving it!
Do you ever feel like you’re not taking enough chances?