Friday, 29 April 2016

5 Seconds Of Summer SLFL Tour (Newcastle)

Ashton Irwin image by Aymie Barton
Admittedly this post is quite late, I went to see 5SOS a few weeks ago but it's taken me a while to get around to the write up. I need to start making time for my little hobby again, I really do! I'm going to start attempting to do YouTube videos when I get time, I even have it all written down and planned out. Anyway...

The tickets were another impulse buy and I was actually really pleased that I bought them because no matter what you think of them as a band... They're super good live. For me, I guess 2016 is the year of live music as I've already seen The Vamps, 5SOS and Busted will be the next concert I see. I'm fairly certain that those won't be the only shows that I'll go to see. 

The support acts were Don Broco and Jessarae which I enjoyed but I wasn't particularly interested in, check back in with me in about six months by which time I will have gotten a song stuck in my head or something...

The 5SOS setlist consisted of some old favourites and some new ones, it was fairly mixed and even Leanne knew some of the songs that they played. That's saying something because she couldn't stand them before the concert. She did say that she was concerned about the "Asian minority" as she deemed him too red and a little tired looking. I would like to clarify that he's not Asian and Leanne has a way with words... 

I will say, the crowd was an itty bit younger and shorter than the crowd for The Vamps as we had similar seats but managed to see more easily. I was pleased for the parents taking their 10 year olds to the concerts that the band only swore once which is probably quite good for what they're used to.

Moving swiftly onwards, what I liked about the show was that despite the fact that they're a young band they didn't make it gimmicky or OTT. They played their strengths and through that they showed some fairly impressive guitar and drum skills. 

Their songs are generally catchy and easy to keep up with, they're sound is distinct but maybe not as distinct as that of The Vamps who I saw maybe a week or to prior to this concert. None of the band member seemed tipsy at this one, I thought that Brad from The Vamps seemed utterly smashed at their concert... 

Anyway, here's the compulsory concert selfie of the event... Another one to add to the growing collection! I always make whoever I'm with at the time take one with me when I see a live event and I don't know why, I guess it's habit or tradition now.

So to summarise the event, I really enjoyed myself and possibly got Leanne to tolerate 5 Seconds Of Summer. Score. The show went without a hitch, the songs were played well and even the granny who was sat next to me had a good little dance. I don't even think she was there with kids... Strange. Thanks for reading today's post, I hope you enjoyed it!

Wednesday, 13 April 2016

The Vamps Wake Up Tour (Newcastle)

I don't go to concerts enough, I really don't. I've been to a few but I just love going to see live music so when The Vamps put up tickets for less than a tenner I guess I just couldn't help myself.

I've liked The Vamps for quite some time so it was easy to get into the music before the concert, I even picked up a few favourites! I would probably say that at this point I favour Cheater, Volcano and I Found A Girl but it's kind of impossible to dislike The Vamps. They write their own songs, they cover other peoples songs well and they're not as in your face as One Direction. I actually think that they're more deserving of attention than one Direction for those reasons. They really have their own sound, no matter what they sing whether they're singing their own songs or covering someone elses you can always hear their voices and styles as a band.

The Vamps have fairly good merch to be honest, I like the colours they use and it's not as obvious as a shirt covered in their faces. Anyway, decked out in our new merch T shirts we waited for the start of the show which was to be supported by The Tide, Hometown and Conor Maynard.

Both The Tide and Hometown just didn't click for me, you know when you hear a band and you just know they're going to be big? Well, that just didn't happen for me with either of those two bands. They were good but I wouldn't add them to a playlist if you catch my drift.

Conor Maynard was good though, which honestly, I wasn't expecting because I took a dislike to him when Can't Say No came out ages ago. I guess he's just grown on me, he was always good I just didn't like him as an artist. I think I've been converted now though.

I think it was at this point that I got a little hyper about the concert and I really started getting into the concert mood. Sometimes all it takes is a good support act and a little singing to get into something. At this point I was still shattered from being stranded in London the night before so I was trying to perk myself up and this kind of rewired me.

By the time The Vamps actually came on stage I was really psyched for it, I knew their main singles and I'd tried to pick up some of their lesser known songs too so I would know what they were singing so I was half prepared.

We booked these tickets on a whim and we were glad that we did because we had a good laugh! The only thing I would complain about is this chick called Amy that was sat behind me, she was annoying and a bit over top but, hey, she was enjoying herself so I won't call her too much. It doesn't mean that I didn't want to shout at her though...

On a brighter note, I really like the pyrotechnics and lights that they used for the show, they didn't go overboard with stage props or features but that just meant that I could appreciate the sound of the band more without focusing on sight.

I guess to wrap up this post I'll just say that I really enjoyed myself and and that The Vamps will make a few appearances in my playlists over the coming months. I'm going to see 5 Seconds Of Summer next week if I can get the time off so keep an eye out for that post, I got those tickets on a whim too!

Thank you so much for reading, I hope you enjoyed this post. The next post should be a Glossybox Unboxing one so that should be a change of pace. You guys have been bombarded with lifestyle post after lifestyle post recently and this blog has turned into a diary... Well, until next time! Bye!

Monday, 11 April 2016

My Friend Is An Actual Mermaid (Long Crimped Hair Details)

Just a quick one before tomorrow's post about The Vamps concert, I want to do something a little different because hair posts aren't all too common on my blog. I'm not going to lie, I'm pretty jealous of Leanne's long locks. That's why I ended up messing on with her hair on the way home from our trip to London... 

We had been talking about the 80's themed party she went to when she was younger because I took out the braids for it during PE... It was one of our reasons to skive. We took out the braids to reveal a frizzly bushy style but things turned out differently this time. Of course, the circumstances were different. 

Last time she slept in wet braids, this time I did them at about 1am on the train with some Frozen hair detangler and no brush. I tried to get the braids as even as possible but because her hair is slightly layered so they got gradually thinner. 

The detangler was from Poundland and the spray wasn't really a spray, it was more like a squirt so I had to put some on my hands and run it through each individual braid. It turned out to be quite a lengthy process to be honest. Though, it did make her hair look glossier and it made braiding it without a brush a little bit easier too.

Last time it was more Hermione Granger, this time I think it was more of a Coachella sort of festival look. I will say though, this wouldn't have worked on shorter hair, the length and weight of Leanne's hair stopped the crimped locks from looking more like an afro. 

If I was to do this to my hair it wouldn't have a festival vibe, it would be a bit more... "I'm going through an awkward phase" because it would just stick out. Then again, my hair is still at a weird stage anyway because of last years pixie crop that I'm still growing out. 

Anyway, that's it for today's post! I'll get straight onto writing the post about The Vamps concert that I went to last week. Until next time, bye!

Saturday, 9 April 2016

Aymie In The Big City: London Adventure 2016 (Stand Up Central)

Hey everyone! Right off the bat I want to apologise for the lack of quality in today's blog pics, the room was dark and we're not great at photography. This is the third and final post about my London trip so I hope you've enjoyed reading about it.

As mentioned a few weeks ago, I want to share my first ever experience with stand up comedy so today I'm going to be talking about that. The whole reason I went to London was to see Russell Howard's Stand Up Central as he's one of my favourite comedians. I was shocked to see that the tickets were free so I took advantage of that and harassed Leanne into booking them with me. 

After our aimless wandering we discovered that quite a long line had already formed so we quickly joined it, though, I left Leanne to buy hair bands... Anyway, an employee at the venue (The Electric Ballroom) came to check our tickets and give us numbers, we were worried that wouldn't get in because the numbers were limited. Only about four people behind us got numbers before the STANDBY stickers started being given out so we were super lucky.

We got the perfect seats; by the camera so we wouldn't be picked up on TV. I will say though, I reckon my laugh and high pitched noise will have been picked up at times. The seats would have been better if the people behind us weren't screechy and annoying but, hey, free tickets!

Ray Peacock was the comedian that went on first as the one to warm up the crowd, I'd already seen him on Russell Howard's Good News and found him funny so I was fairly pleased by that. He definitely got us hyped up for the show, I also like that he returned during sort breaks to keep us amused. 

I don't know how much I can say about the jokes because it will all be televised soon enough but I will say that Russell was on top form. You don't even realise how many jokes and conversations go on around the show that don't get televised, it's all quite strange to be honest. Of course, there was other comedians on and they were all pretty great but to be honest... Ray and Russell were the highlights for me and Ray won't even be on TV for the shows.

As a bonus for you guys, I'm going to add in the story of how we got back to the North East and how we missed our train...

So when the filming starts it gets difficult to leave because of filming and the ticket we booked home was for 10pm as it was the last train to Durham for the rest of the night. We didn't want to miss the rest of the show and we didn't want to ask the floor manager to leave so we knew we were cutting it fine but we hurried onto the tube and ran for the train but... The train was already gone and we got stranded.

I fell to pieces to be honest, I panicked and cried... Leanne on the other hand was calm and booked us tickets to Leeds and arranged for someone to pick us up and take us to hers. We didn't get home until about 5am but we survived and slept until lunchtime. 

Conclusion? I loved seeing live stand up but me and Leanne are total idiots, more so me than her but it takes two to miss the same train! Anyway, thanks for reading! If you want to read the other two posts just click on the links below: 

Friday, 8 April 2016

Aymie In The Big City: London Adventure 2016 (Inhabition Cafe & Restaurant)

I'm terrible at making menial decisions. There, I said it, we can get over it now. Yes, I'm opinionated and argumentative but if you ask me where I want to eat I'll go completely blank. That's actually why post two of my London Adventure series is about this cafe and not some other random place.

This place had elephants on the sign, I was hungry and I'd been wandering around London for quite some time... I settled. When Leanne asked me where we should go and I saw this across the road it was a no brainer to be honest. Minimal decision making, actually, it was kind of lazy.

The place was typically British, quaint and it had a charm to it. I will say though, I'm fairly sure that the owner was Greek. Either way we were quite happy with our decision and it didn't take us long to find something to eat. I ordered a lemon and ginger tea because I had quite the sore throat, it was hot and soothing and that was what I fancied. The owner was talkative and personable, it definitely added to the appeal of the place.

It was no gourmet restaurant, I'm not going to say OMG GET TO THIS PLACE IMMEDIATELY but I will say that if you're looking for somewhere that requires minimal fuss and sells decent food then swing by whilst you're exploring Camden like we did. 

It's not a bad place to chill out and eat, it really isn't. I quite like the look of the place to be honest, it's cute and quirky. I particularly like the light fittings, I just think they look jumbled in the decor mix. 

I feel like round about now would be a good time to stop talking about the visuals and start talking about food. I am quite a foodie for a person who has picky taste, I think what I'm trying to say is that I'm a lover of food. Though, I'm super sick of fast food because I seem to east way too much of the stuff these days. I need to get back to my health kick!

As I said before, the food was nowhere near gourmet but it was simple, filling and tasty and that's all you really need. The portion size was good and since I opted out of the side salad for the chicken burger I got extra cheese so I was a very happy bunny. 

The battered chicken wasn't overcooked, the bun was fresh and the chips were light and fluffy. All in all, it wasn't a waste of money and I actually enjoyed it. I will say though, London food prices are ridiculous, I could probably get double the food for half the price in the North East.

Well, that's what I thought about the Inhabition Cafe & Restaurant. Has anyone reading this post ever stopped by? I'd love to hear about what you think. 

Thursday, 7 April 2016

Aymie In The Big City: London Adventure 2016 (Navigation)

Hello everyone! As promised, here's the first part of my London trip recount. This may take a few posts but I had a lot of fun and I have some new experiences to talk about so hopefully you'll enjoy it.

This part of my mini series is about my first time navigating through Camden without a guide, Leanne and I aren't the best at it but we managed... I guess. It took us about five minutes to find Camden and maybe a few to decide which direction to go when the road we were following turned into three. London is so confusing and I'm pleased we had enough common sense to bring our phone chargers because we needed to use Google Maps numerous times! 

We just needed to find the Electric Ballroom for Russell Howard's Stand Up Central, speaking of which, that will be the topic of one of my blog posts... Anyway, when we got there we saw that no one had turned up at the venue yet so we risked a perusal around Camden Market. It's one of the most bizarre places you'll probably find in the UK, it's just so varied in culture, style and the people you find there.  

If you follow down this little paths you'll be bombarded with different food scents. English, Indian, Indonesian, Chinese... It's just a mish mash of stalls, some were overwhelming and others made me feel super hungry. 

I don't think Leanne was all too pleased because she's more picky than I am but I get so fascinated by the contrast between each of the stalls. I was slightly upset that one of my favourites had disappeared due to renovation, I'm hoping that it'll return soon enough. It was a Hong Kong sort of Cantonese styled one... Go figure! 

We also checked out Cyberdog, it's like a shop turned rave or something. It's dark and it's full of flashy lights and neon colours, that's if you can focus on anything with the super loud music blasting. Two dancers were up on high platforms as part of the look of the shop, I don't have and photos of the inside because they don't like people taking them. 

On the lower floor we discovered an adult section which we both dashed out of when we realised what was occupying the space. Of course we would wander into the weird bit of the shop. It wouldn't have been as bad if we had realised before we went downstairs but because we're both awkward... The shop itself was an experience anyway, it's one of those places you wouldn't know about unless you accidently stumbled upon it.

It's difficult to visit Camden and not appreciate artwork, I spotted plenty of art stalls but since I wasn't allowed to take photos of that I'll share some of the spectacular wall art. It's such a vibrant place anyway but just about everything is painted or coloured. 

This owl piece was particularly prominent because of the bold dark colouring, the shop underneath was fairly bland so it drew my attention more so. It's easy to be drawn to something when it's amongst plain places and things and this is certainly one of those things, I'm no art critic but I do recognise art when I see it.

I also quite like this piece, we found this on our way from the train station so it's not quite Camden but I quite like the geometric design and the black and white figure in contrast with itself as one piece. It's very different to the owls in many ways, I think that the owls have a more edgy look to them if that makes sense. 

It's a wonder that I managed to help navigate because my attention is easily swayed and I had a lot to be swayed towards. Either way, we both made it to the venue all safe and in one piece. I think that's fairly good considering Leanne is bad with maps and I don't concentrate on anything. 

Well, to finish off I'm going to leave you guys a close up picture of the elephant design on the top of Namaste. The design is beautiful, I'm already a little fixated with elephants but the general patterns used to create the look are a really nice touch.

We didn't go in but it's one of my favourites as most of their products are handmade and it's in a fairly hippy style. If you read any of my Hong Kong travel posts last year you probably will have already picked up on the sort of thing I like. I bought about six different elephant print bottoms.

That's it for this post, there will be another one up soon to tell you about the cafe we popped into for a bite to eat. Let me know if you know any more about the art work around London, I'd love to learn about it. Until then, bye!

Sunday, 3 April 2016

#NOTD - Purple Rain

Hello everyone! So today's post is a fairly mild one in terms of nail design, it's not funky or themed... It was more of a go with the flow thing to be honest. I'm pleased that I got to do Leanne's nails again because I haven't done a nail post for a while and they're my favourite ones to do.

After scrolling through Instagram I chose a purple and silver colour scheme because Leanne loves purple and I'm quite partial to painting a feature nail. I just saw the two colours together and really liked them so that's what lead to my choice, I wasn't particularly in the mood to paint bright pastel nails to go with the general Spring theme everyone is so keen on right now.

For the purple nails I used Purple Pizzazz from New York Colour, though, I wasn't overly impressed with the consistency or the size of the brush. 

For the feature nail I used two different polishes because I knew that the silver I wanted to use wouldn't be a total block colour. I used a plain white Lipsy polish for the base colour as it was the most neutral one that Leanne had in her collection. As for the silver polish, it was one of those small polishes that went in a tri-pack that we couldn't quite place. You could, of course, use any old silver but I wanted something glittery and thick.

The nails looked pretty good without the extra detail on the feature nail, The purple and the silver looked great together as the glitter in both polishes really complimented each other. I think that's because of the way both polishes have the fine glitter effect rather than chunky or less subtle effects. 

I've done similar looks with different colour combinations in the past but I've tended to stick to one non glittery base and a sparkly feature so to have this dual glitter combination is a little different for me. I just couldn't help but add a little something extra to the look because it was already so glittery and pretty. 

This leads me to the next topic of this post, the cluster of gems on the feature nails. It was made of four purple petal shaped gems and two circular clear gems because I felt like the look wasn't enough with just the purple ones.

For a plain look, I quite like this one. As I mentioned before, I usually go for something a little more complex or themed so this is definitely a change of pace. I may attempt different plain looks fairly soon but I reckon that the next one will be floral to go alongside the Spring them that is very prominent right now.

Well, that's the look in a nutshell. What do you guys think? I'm quite keen on this look but I'd love to hear any thoughts you have or even any suggestions for the next look... Until next time, bye!