Summer lovin…

It’s wedding season again & this year scotland even has the weather for it. Summer weddings are so much more fun when you can have some fizz in the sun. The rising temperatures also make cute floaty dresses an option. I have a couple of weddings to attend in upcoming months, so I’ve put together a wee collection of wedding guest attire.

Obviously, me being me, I don’t want any boring formal wear. Thus I’ve been scouring the summer lines for wedding suitable dresses that I can still feel myself in. I don’t have a specific look, I tend to dip into lots of different styles because I’m too random to commit to just one. The common thread is often being a little on the weird side & never blending into background. Luckily, the high street has plenty to offer that fits the bill.

Lindy Bop are always a good first stop on the search for a fancy dress. I love their retro styles & funky prints. I’ve yet to wear one of their creations that didn’t garner a million compliments. My top pick is this amazing jungle print 50’s piece. You couldn’t fail to feel like a starlet in it.

Keeping with the 50’s theme, but giving a slightly more sedate impression is this beauty. It’s basically an LBD with a little extra magic.

How wouldn’t want to be adorned in starlit woodland love?

Coast is one of those shops that always has a few gems hidden amongst the predictable. This dress is one of those sparkling finds. I love the light, flouncy layers, I bet it looks amazing on the dance floor.

Florals are standard affair for June weddings, but turn up the colour volume & they really come to life.

This wrap number from Lovedrobe would be perfect for drinks & canapés in the grounds of any luxe wedding venue. If you’re looking something more unique Elvi have you covered. This is is the prettiest jumpsuit I’ve ever seen. Flirty, floaty & graced with a cape. It’s the superhero of nuptial fashion.

I couldn’t do a dress guide without including my current colour fad. I am digging everything orange this summer & this tea dress is not the exception. It’s so fresh & vivid. The cut outs add a little sex appeal whilst remaining subtle enough to be worn in a church. Asos have knocked it out of the park again.

If I can’t exclude my flavour of the month it would certainly be remiss not to my mention true colour love; red. You can never have too many red dresses. I can see absolutely no cons to this particular example. The lace is so delicate, the fluted sleeves are divine & that v neck is just deep enough. Asos are on a roll.

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Most of the time…

I haven’t cut myself for a long time. Realistically speaking, I cannot ever cut myself again. They call this recovery. Apparently, I’m recovered. I just don’t always feel it.

Tonight I looked through my old self harm pictures. Yes, I have pictures. When I was in the thick of it I always took photographs. Firstly because I felt compelled to, it was part of my ritual. Also, because I couldn’t trust myself to judge the severity of my wounds. Those pictures gave me the tiny bit of distance required to see what level of medical intervention I could get away with. Now, they’re a stop gap.

They’re the thing I do when I want to cut so badly it hurts not to. I look at those images of gore & miss it.

I miss the blood. The hot, flowing, staining everything I own blood.

I miss the smell & that crackling sound my skin makes when I slice into scar tissue.

I want the pain. I want the deep, sharp trauma my blade inflicts & the hot throb of infected tissue. I long for the ache of putting a butchered arm into a sleeve.

I know that doesn’t make any sense. I know it’s sick & crazy. It is still true. There’s a reason I yearn for the carnage; it works. Only briefly and, sure, it also fucks up your life, but those moments of respite are everything. Physical pain is nothing compared to the relentless agony that can exist in my head. Most of the time it’s manageable. Most of the time I can make it sleep. Most of the time I’m in control. Control isn’t easy. It is work. Exhausting, consuming labour.

The blade is easier. In the short term it’s beautiful relief. All those horrific feelings pour out with the blood. I can slash through my anguish just as easy I hack through my flesh. That’s why we do it. In case you were wondering. The reason some us do insane things to ourselves is because it’s effective. We hurt ourselves to heal ourselves.

The calm just doesn’t last very long. The sickness comes back. It returns stronger every time. The crazy grows. You need bigger, deeper, scarier cuts to keep it quiet. Then the self harm becomes a crazy of its own. You need it. You find yourself listening to drs who say you’re going to die. And even though you really don’t want to die. It’s hard to care. Now the crazy is trying to destroy you & the cutting is competing to do you in first.

So, I don’t cut anymore. I can’t cut anymore because I cannot control it.

If I want to be in charge,

If I want a chance at living a life I love,

If I want to not hurt everyone who cares about me,

I can’t cut.

Sometimes, though, I desperately want to. The easy way out looks good. The horror movie in my head wants to come to life, but I can’t let it. I don’t cut.

I just look at old pictures

And

Write all the things I can’t bring myself to say out loud.

I don’t cut anymore & most of the time I’m glad.

A pair of little magic glasses…

I’m mostly a go big or go home girl. I won’t wear one colour when I can wear three. I won’t pick elegantly understated over weirdly wow. This is absolutely the way I approach choosing glasses.

I probably have too many pairs of specs, but I don’t see me being satisfied with my collection anytime soon. Every time I see bold & extravagant frames, I want them. Thus I introduce to my latest ocular obsessions.

ly h Kerr

Cat-eyes are my favourite shape & blue was a colour I did not have. Need I say more?

ly h Kerr

I don’t usually buy prescription sunnies because I always lose them, but these were just too amazing to resist. I adore these so much that I might just manage to hang onto them.

Both pairs of glasses are from where.light who are my current purveyors of crazy spectacles.

Month by month…

There is a particular torture in waiting for your period to arrive when you wish it wouldn’t. Analysing every sensation in the run up to your due date. Trying to decide if your sore back is a period sore back. Being almost certain you kind of smell a menstrual type aroma, but also thinking maybe last week’s nausea was morning sickness. Counting the days. Marking the calendar. Trying not to hope & trying not to lose hope.

Each month is just a microcosm of life. Watching, waiting & knowing time isn’t on your side. Doing your very best not let this desire take over. Working hard to ensure not realising the dream won’t break you. Constantly weighing up how much more you can take.

I’m lying here kidding myself that the hot ache in my thighs doesn’t mean the blood is on its way. I’m reminding myself of all the wonderful things I have. Attempting to hang onto how grateful I am. I know how much worse life can be. You can be happy with the consolation prize. Almost is better than nothing. We don’t always get everything we want, right?

Whatever gets you through your life…

I’m the kind of person who can be prone to feeling a bit too sad. Sometimes there are specific reasons for my sombre mood, others I’m blue without a clue. Obviously this necessitates developing sad day strategies. One of my most straightforward techniques is pop culture distraction.

Basically I immerse myself in literature, tv, movies or music that either soothe or swallow up my sadness. It’s a shallow technique. It has no chance of curing what ails me, but it can get me through a rough day. There are times when whatever gets you through the night really is alright.

My all time favourite tv show is pretty effective. Pick any random episode of Grey’s Anatomy and there’s a very high chance I will cry before it finishes. Select an episode that pushes my weepy buttons & I’ll have a mini breakdown. I can see why some may think this would be terrible viewing for a sad person. They’d be wrong. Crying is so incredibly cathartic. Balling your eyes over someone else’s pain, even more so. You get all the release with none of the troublesome self examination. I know, I know, you have to deal with your issues to solve them. However, when your issue is not entirely fixable & not even always knowable, Grey’s works. Throw in amazing uncliched female characters, very hot men, proper happy endings & your heart wrench is balanced. Need a good wail, but to still feel like there is good in the world? Meredith & Cristina are your girls.

Jane Austen serves the same, save me from drowning in melancholy purpose. She just does it in a very different way. Austen soothes me. I know those books inside out. I know I can trust Jane to guide me to a satisfying ending. There will be no traumatic twists. Manners will keep almost everyone in line. Characters I love will learn their lessons gracefully & reap their rewards. The baddies will get their just desserts, cads will rue the day. All with a dash of wit & a knowing wink from Austen. I know these novels have zero relevance to my life. To be honest that’s kind of the point. Ordered escapism is a marvellous distraction from messy feelings.

Lost in Translation combines both functions. It lets me cry whilst letting me believe. Unconventional happily ever after is the best kind. Meeting someone who can help you find yourself spoke to my deepest desires for a very long time. Now, I can enjoy the film safe in the knowledge that I managed it all by myself. All of those arty shots of Tokyo at night calm me. Bill Murray dispersing quizzical wisdom lifts me. Sad people finding there might be answers to their frustrated situations gives me life.

Which brings me to my ultimate sad girl medicine; Alan Bennett. Every single word he puts on paper is a tiny cure. His writing is both real & magical. His diaries reveal a decent man. His fiction & his life are built on a solid social conscious. Biting wit, cosy sentiment & articulate commentary somehow abide comfortably together in his work. I love Alan Bennett. I can lose my pain in his pages, sedated by seemingly effortless talent.

I’m grateful my bad life evolved into just bad days. It doesn’t always happen that way. Plus, when the bad days stack up it doesn’t always feel like they’ll fade away. We all need ways to temporarily escape. Those of us who’ve had a brush with crazy, even more so. These work for me. Perhaps they’ll help you too.

My week(ish) in pictures…

It seems like we are actually getting summer in Scotland. It’s been sunny every day for week & shock horror, we’re getting used to it. I’ve been taking full advantage of the weather (& my sister’s maternity leave) to get out & enjoy my beautiful country.

Living in Glasgow is amazing. The city is a hub of culture; great architecture, food, bars, shopping, museums. Oh & Edinburgh is almost as good & just down the road. Plus 30 mins drive from the city centre is the stunning Loch Lomond & loads of other equally beautiful places. We really do have the best of both worlds & I’ve been exploring them.

I’ve been taking in stunning views, soaking up the sea air & swanning around my city rocking my summer wardrobe.

ly h Kerr, Balmaha

ly h Kerr, bath st, Glasgow ly h Kerr, National Gallery of Scotland

There have been movies & yummies with my favourite people. My nails have, of course been killer. Obviously #projectpostit has been getting around with me too.

Project post it, Glasgow

ly h Kerr, the toyboy

ly h Kerr, Tarbert, Kilberry bay

Ringo came to stay, Bronan continues to be the perfect meow. My little people light up my life & make me laugh so hard I look like a walrus. There was also a tiny bit hospital fuckery.ly h Kerr, Ayr, seb

Light, sky light, bff,

ly h Kerr, Nail art

I even fitted in a wee stint as a luxury bitch. The Toyboy & I had a night in a fancy hotel. Plus some general lazing around. You gotta take it easy in this heat.

Cruelty free quickie (the Aldi edition)…

I didn’t intended posts like this to become a regular thing, but I just keep coming across lovely products that I want to share. I’ve never been a brand snob, so where a product comes from really doesn’t phase me. If it works & it is cruelty free, I’m happy. Thus, I bring you some more budget beauties.

Aldi would not usually be my go to for beauty shopping. However, a beauty & skin care expert friend tipped me off about their Lacura range. Their skincare range has the ingredients you’ll find in premium products, but for a fraction of the price. On that recommendation I decided to try some of the products about 18mths ago & haven’t looked back. I quickly fell for their Q12 serum. Like a lot face creams it claims to prevent wrinkles & smooth fine lines. I’m lucky enough not have much of a wrinkle problem yet, so I can’t verify the veracity of those of those assertions. What I can say is it’s an excellent moisturiser plus my skin feels softer & firmer. It’s also significantly cheaper and delivers much better results than the more prestigious brands I was using. I swiftly added Lacura’s Expert Intensive Care serum as a night cream & am equally pleased. In short my skin feels soft, smooth & my dry patches are a thing of the past. Oh & the both smell divine.

The Lacura eyeshadow palette was a complete impulse buy. In typical random Aldi fashion it was beside some light bulbs I needed. I brought it home & promptly forgot about it. That is until bloggers started to moan about it on Twitter. Apparently some beauty bloggers are sick of ‘dupes’ & just want us all to buy the real deal. Well, their distain reminded me that I had just such a faux & I promptly gave it go. Guess what? This palette is lovely. It’s a standard natural type collection with some neutrals & metallics. The shades are cool, the brush is nice & it it has staying power. I really don’t see what anyone is complaining about. If you need things to be from Urban Decay, go ahead and buy your heart’s desire. In the mean time I am totally behind these purse friendly versions that are also great quality. Not everyone has the ability to splash out on the big names; I love that there are now good options to accommodate that. For my own part, even when I do have extra to spend I have zero interest in rewarding high end brands for overcharging. If Aldi can create fantastic (& cruelty free) cosmetics for less than a tenner, anyone can. If you want me to pay you much more, you better be offering much more. I’ll definitely drop some cash on something excellent, but if its equal is in the supermarket, it’s going in my trolley!