TTYA x LTS Zip Waist Jacket

I'm a long time fan of Long Tall Sally, so when I was asked to be involved in their latest collection in collaboration with TTYA I jumped at the chance! The collection features a lot of minimalist pieces, clean lines and structured tailoring which is something a bit different for me. I opted for the zip waist jacket, which retails at £75, as it seemed the most versatile item for myself. I'm unused to tailoring in my clothes - I'm a cutesy cardigan wearer rather than a posh blazer girl - but I loved the nipped in waist and the fact that the peplum is removable via zip to make it a really flattering cropped length as I did for these photos. A word of warning though, the sizing runs a little smaller than usual LTS sizes - I struggle to do this jacket up in a size 16 - but that's my only real complaint. The jacket feels well made, has a lovely lining and I can roll up the sleeves which is a major bonus for me.

jacket: c/o long tall sally / dress: voodoo vixen / heels: dorothy perkins (about 5 years ago)

In The Frame

I've been dying to feature my gorgeous tattoo flash from the wonderful Kiki Tattoos since I received it back in October(!) but I've only just managed to get it cut down to size and into a frame now. I'm a big fan of most old school tattoo art (most of my tattoos are testament to that), especially with a twist and this one has a gorgeous retro 50's kitsch girly-ness about it I just adore; The top floral piece will definitely be my next tattoo when I have some money available, so keep your eyes peeled for it hopefully sometime this year. The frame is just a cute one I spied in the Next sale last year, the green colour is fresh and pretty and really makes the print colours pop and if you know me you know I can't resist a bit of extra colour in my life to brighten things up.

Vanilla Bundt Cake

I've been dying to get a bundt/ring pan for ages, so when I spotted one for just £2 in home bargains I had to pick it up! I had a couple early teething problems in regards to removing the finished cakes (you really need a silicone spatula to go around the edges and make sure you grease the pan extra well) but overall I'm happy with the results, though I need to use more mix for a more dramatic domed look next time I think.

110g baking marg/butter
80g caster sugar
40g light brown soft sugar
115g self raising flour
1 large egg
20ml milk
1 tsp vanilla essence
50g royal icing

one. preheat oven to 170c and grease your bundt pan
two. combine butter, sugars and vanilla essence in a bowl until well mixed
three. add egg followed by flour until solid dough is formed, add milk bit by bit until more pliable and able to spread in a pan (should be a very solid dough)
four. pour into bundt tin and spread evenly, bake for 25 minutes and check on the cake every 5 minutes after until golden brown and springy to the touch
five. leave in pan for 10-15 minutes and then tip our onto cooling rack, use a silicone spatula around the edge to loosen if necessary and tap the bottom of the pan a few times
six. combine royal icing with water, ice using a piping bag in a zig zag motion

Aveeno Moisturising Cream

Ever since I was little, I've always had problems with my skin being very dry and eczema prone - this was exacurbated when I was a teenager and trying to use a million different (super drying) spot treatments as well as hydrocortisone, so when winter rolls around my skin really suffers in the cold. I've tried everything from sudocreme (which I'm now allergic to) to aqueous cream to expensive lush products and this Aveeno Collodial Oatmeal Cream is the only one that's really worked; I wish I'd discovered it years earlier! I had a bad breakout of eczema on the back of my neck and grabbed this in desperation and within about a week my skin was smooth and hydrated, and I've been using it every day to maintain that since. It costs around £10 for a large 300ml bottle, which isn't a bad price at all, and it lasts ages. And the last on the list of positives is that it doesn't give me spots, unlike creams I've used in the past. Win/win!

Baking Wishlist

In case you haven't noticed, there have been a fair few baking posts and recipes on the blog lately - you can catch up on them here if you haven't taken a look before. I'm really enjoying spending time making things in the kitchen at the moment and as such I've always got an eye out for any potential kitchen bits or upgrades to what I already have; and it has to be cute of course (or what's the point?)!

I spied these measuring cups from John Lewis last time I was up at Cribbs Causeway with my mum and they're even more adorable in person; however they're only plastic so the price tag is a little steep at the wrong side of a fiver but I am in need of another set as my trusty poundland ones are falling to bits. These seemingly innocent flowerpots are actually silicone muffin cases from Lakeland - such a cute idea, especially if you use a chocolate muffin mix and then green frosting/fondant flowers for a little 'garden' effect; trying edible cacti would be another idea. These At Home with Ashley Thomas biscuit stamps from Debenhams also ramp up the cuteness factor, I love the idea of custom designing biscuits for someone you love. I love an animal theme on my homewear so this mason cash hedgehog mixing bowl from Dunelm ticks all the boxes - how cute are those little hodgepigs? The green is a nice creamy colour as well which makes it great for a retro kitchen if you're not looking for exclusive pale pinks and baby blues. Finally, I almost can't believe that this flan dish is really from George Home at ASDA, it looks so much more luxe and expensive; I love yellow shades in general and this mustard tone is a nice mix of retro and cheerful that can really brighten up a kitchen - the little message is adorable too.

TTYA x Long Tall Sally

Being on the tall side at 5'9 and a bit, finding clothing that fits (e.g. doesn't feel indecently short) can be a real challenge, and especially so last year before I lost weight; apparently plus size and tall are exclusive things and both at once is unheard of! Long Tall Sally go up to a size 24 (which is larger than a lot of 'tall' clothing brands!) and because of that is one of my favourite brands, so when the #TTYA4LTS campaign was emailed to me I was intrigued; I'd actually never heard of TTYA and it's a little more high fashion than the style I was used to, but that's what makes it so fresh and different. My particular favourites are the super luxe looking jumpsuit and that gorgeous silver pleated skirt.