Cassiefairy's thrifty lifestyle blog

Cassiefairy's thrifty little lifestyle blog – DIY crafts, sewing, food & fashion – what more does a girl need??

My outfit for the UK National Blog Awards 2014


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What to wear to the ‘Oscars of the blogging world’?!

If you’ve not heard me shouting about it already, I’m a FINALIST in the National Blog Awards 2014! I’m going to the awards ceremony on Friday night and it’s been described as the ‘Oscars of the blogging world’ so I’m expecting a fabulous night out in London and looking forward to meeting lots of glamourous bloggers. My best friend Jenna from Glitter Daze blog will be among them, as she has been shortlisted in the Wedding Blogs category, so it will be amazing to catch up with my Northern buddy after a few months apart! After my initial excitement, my thoughts obviously turned to what I should wear (I am a retail and FASHION finalist after all!) and of course I had no idea. Jenna always looks super-fabulous with just the right amount of glitz and glam in her outfit choices so I’ve been discussing my dress plans with her and have finally settled on this…

ladies joules tweet jacket with pink detailing and bird lining

My first choice was this blazer from Joules. I’d had my eye on it for while because the cut is beautiful, the tweet is such great quality with pretty rainbow colours subtly sprinkled throughout and I wanted to wear something smart as a nod to the importance of the event. Plus, when I tried on the jacket I needed a SIZE 8 (there is no way that’s right!) and that made me feel good ;) I think it’s because it’s such a fine piece of tailoring that it fits me so well in the smaller sizes and it looks great left open (although it does button up too, honest!) so my dress will still show beneath it. Which leads me on to my next choice:

ladies fashion look for spring 2014 with pink new look dress and joules tweed blazer

I am in love with this New Look dress. I have honestly looked at every single dress online and visited the store 4 times this month to try on dresses before I took the plunge and went for this ‘online exclusive’ pink lace dress. The A-line cut is really flattering and I think I’ll be able to fit in quite a few desserts before the dress starts to bulge! I also love the cute sweetheart neckline which doesn’t feel too revealing because of the layer of lace over the chest. I also like that the dress covers up my arms because I’m more likely to take off my blazer if I have a little arm protection beneath! I love the fit and style so much that I’ve since ordered it in black as well and got a bargain because it was reduced online, yikes! As you can see from the photos, the dress picks out the pink elements of the Joules blazer (the collar even has pink velvet underneath) and when I turned back the cuffs, the lining was also pink so I think I’ll wear it like this – Wham! style ;)

My outfit for the UK National Blog Awards 2014

I’ve instagrammed my accessories choices last week and here they are – a pair of black suede wedges and a gorgeous envelope clutch bag, both from New Look. I’m not sure if I’ll be in black tights or nude (I guess it depends on the weather and how brave I am feeling) but I think that the bag and shoes will go well with either, and they look great with the black & gold belt that came with the dress. Plus there’s plenty of room for business cards in my clutch for all the networking I’ll be doing ;)

So now I just have to get my face and hair sorted and I’ll be ready for the big day! What do you think of my outfit choice? Any ideas for how I should wear my hair? Are you going to the National Blog Awards too? I’d love to hear from you so please tweet me @Cassiefairy

 


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My little vintage caravan ~ Pink party inspirations

My birthday is coming up soon, and what with the Christmas celebrations, I often overlook it myself! I get too excited about the festive season and forget to make any plans to celebrate my birthday. This year, I thought I’d treat myself to a little pink-and-red party in my vintage caravan so I’ve been looking around Pinterest to get inspiration for decorations and themes – check out my Parties Pinterest board for all the image credits. Here’s my party ‘moodboard’ and some of the decoration ideas that I’m hoping will make it onto my party table:

red and pink themed birthday party

I’ve got some white and pink spotty doilies and polka dot paper from Wholeport, and have unpacked my vintage tea set with pink retro design, so I’ve got the basics sorted! Just need to get on with crafting some decorations and preparing my caravan to receive guests – at least there’s somewhere to sit now! I’ve also started thinking about foodie treats for my party, so I’ll share more of these with you soon!


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Our Anniversary Party ~ Fill the whole world with a rainbow

party venue village hall decorating wedding planning

So you may remember that I had the dull and tired hall venue above to dress up ready for our 10th wedding anniversary party and I’d been looking around Pinterest at ideas for decorating the hall on a budget. I knew I wanted to continue the rainbow theme of our invitations, cupcake bouquets and the jam-jar tealights, so I decided that the best way to make a big impact was with bunting.

So I ordered packs and packs of cheap plastic bunting from a party shop online (the lowest price I could find!). I wasn’t worried about the bunting looking plasticy; although fabric bunting would have been a little more glamourous, I would have blown the whole party budget on just the bunting. Plus, I figured that I would rather have more quantity of cheaper bunting, which would create a bigger impact on the room as a whole, rather than a few strands of better quality bunting. In this case, quantity definitely won out over quality! Here’s how the hall turned out:

casssiefairys anniversary party rainbow venue decor bunting decoration

This was thanks to 3 of my lovely friends helping out with stringing it all out – in all, we had about 250 metres of bunting inside and outside the venue, so it looked amazing! It was really colourful and filled the ceiling space perfectly – it certainly made the venue look much nicer than when we arrived to decorate it in the morning! I made the spotty rainbow tablecloths above by sewing together 2 tea-towels that I’d bought in pairs from the poundshop - so that’s only 1 quid per tablecloth for real fabric! As we were having a band to play in the evening, I decided to give them a glamourous backdrop with a rainbow shimmer curtain – this width used three curtains, so this decoration cost under ten pounds! Plus we made a few multi-coloured paperchains for around the walls using sheets of sticky wristband (the type that you get on your wrist when you go to a gig or event). It’s easy to make the paperchains this way because the ends are already sticky and it’s a cheap option because printing companies often have leftover end-of-pack sheets that they can’t use. Or try the good old fashioned method of using strips of coloured paper and a stapler! Anyway, let me know what you think of my cheap and very cheerful decorations for the party, leave me a comment below or tweet me photos of your own party and bunting at @Cassiefairy :)


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Get your art out there – affordable ways to promote artists & exhibitions

As you will probably know if you have read my blog for a while, my husband is an artist and runs a number of events as well as curating exhibitions and art projects. For him it is really important to get information about his art events out there so that interested people can attend. Spreading the word about events or projects can be tricky. Social media is a fab way of advertising event details to your followers, but what if you want a wider reach or appeal to people who may not have a Facebook or twitter account?

Leaflet printing is one option. Printed leaflets or flyers are an affordable way of advertising and for Andy they are the perfect way to spread the word about his events. A simple eye-catching leaflet is an effective way of grabbing people’s attention and showcasing some of the pieces that they will be able to see. You don’t have to spend hours designing a complex leaflet, I find that often the most effective adverts or branding are the most minimal. A busy, fussy leaflet would certainly put me off! You also risk losing the important information such as the time and date of the event if you have a cluttered leaflet.

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Here are a few tips on designing the perfect leaflet for you event:

  • Sounds obvious, but make sure the copy highlights your event or services
  • Keep the layout simple, let your message stand out
  • Think about your colour scheme – do you want bright, vibrant colours or muted pastels? Classic monochrome can also look stunning
  • Think about your target audience – will it appeal to them?
  • One last thing to consider is whether you go for a one sided, double sided leaflet or folded leaflet

Once you’ve come up with your design and found a leaflet printing company how are you going to distribute them? Andy has a few places where he knows they will be happy to put a few of his leaflets advertising exhibitions or events. I would recommend asking around in shops or businesses where you think your target audience will visit.

I hope this has been useful and given you a few ideas on how you can advertise an event. If you want to check out any of Andy’s work or upcoming events then check out his website www.Andy-Greenacre.co.uk


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Traditional school summer fetes

I like a good school fête. True, it’s been many years since I last went to one  (because it’s a bit odd to go to a school event as an adult without an accompanying child!) but I remember the excitement of preparing for a fête as a child, setting out a games stall with my best friends and knowing that the event marked the start of the long summer holidays! 

summer fete school fair party moodboardSchool fête inspirations – via Cassiefairy’s Parties board on Pinterest 

Now, as an adult, I feel that same sense of excitement when I see banners going up outside the schools to advertise their summer fêtes. I’ve been to a couple of school fairs over the past few years (attending with friends who have children – my golden ticket!) and the tombola stalls are still there, raffle tickets are still being sold by the strip and children are still tending their ‘guess the number of sweets in the jar’ stalls. Not only do I enjoy the fiesta-like atmosphere of these events, but I like to support the community too and spend my money at the fair, knowing it will go to a good cause or the school itself.

This year I’ve contributed a raffle prize – the rainbow tutu below – to the local high school, and I’ve already heard stories of teen girls getting excited about winning it, so I hope it’ll help sell a few extra raffle tickets for the family support charity that the school is fundraising for! It’s just a shame that I can’t go to the event itself and enjoy a cup of orange squash and a mini-milk!

2013 cassiefairys neon ballet tutu raffle prize for school fete

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