Monthly Archives: July 2012

A sparkling night out

When I was in Italy at the beginning of July, we kicked off the wedding celebrations with a fun Bachelorette/Hens party for the bride to be! The theme was ‘Sex & the City’ which basically meant a chance to glam up and sparkle! I own this incredibly sparkly dress that I adore but never get a chance to wear because it’s so in your face and when you wear it you pretty much become a walking disco ball. I bought it quite a few years ago of a friend back in Australia for a ball and have only been able to wear it a couple of times since. It is by Australian designer Ruth Tarvydas from her signature collection.

Me and my friend by the waterfront in Cernobbio, the little town at Lake Como where we stayed.

The ‘Metallica’ dress is made of silk with hand sewn metal sequins all over. It has a racer back and a drawstring waist. It’s deliciously special to wear and as you walk the metal sequins jingle! (link)

On my hair I used the Cloud Nine ‘The Wand’ (link) I love the messy curls it produces…but my hair does look slightly frazzled in these photos because on the walk from the hotel to the lakefront we got caught in a massive rain storm!!

In the boat taxi on our way to the party!

The bride to be (left). She had also glammed up for the night but her bridesmaids had a different plan for her and put her in a silly outfit but she still looked amazing :)

For the party us girls headed to the town of Bellagio to a ‘beach bar’ for drinks, food and a good boogie!

At the stunning beach bar overlooking the lake! Unfortunately the weather didn’t cooperate with us that evening because it rained quite a bit but we sure didn’t let that dampen our night of fun!

The bride to be making a toast!

There was plenty of prosecco going round….

It was a really fun girly night out and we danced and partied until the early hours of the morning! x

Something blue…

When I was out shopping in Paris I spotted something amazing and blue in a little shop on Rue Montorgueil. And as much as I tried to resist it..the urge to own this bit of blue arm candy was just too strong! The size, the colour; I just loved it! Because the bag is not made of real leather it wasn’t too expensive and set me back about €50 which I think was well worth it.

I took these pictures of my new bag when I was in Italy earlier this month…

The bag comes with a removable inner padded smaller bag (plus seperate strap) that has compartments and zips for phone, lipgloss and any other handbag essentails. So bascially it’s two bags for the price of one!

Its gorgeous blue colour definitely brightens my day when I have it with me!

This is me, my new bit of blue arm candy and my friend overlooking Lake Como in italy. Do you like my new handbag and would you ever be bold enough to rock such a bright bit of arm candy? I think a colourful handbag makes a great accessory to any simple outfit!

Life is too short…

Sorry for the late post today, life has been pretty hectic since I got back from Croatia on Sunday and on top of that am coming down with a chest cold :( I think my body is telling me to take it easy for the next few days! 
Exactly one year ago today, one of my friends boyfriend died in a tragic accident and therefore today’s quote is all about living life to the fullest….
Happy Hump Day everyone!
Also this is your very last chance to enter the Simply Beach Giveaway (link) on my Facebook Fan Page. Entries close by the end of today so what are you waiting for….enter NOW!! You could win a £50 voucher to spend on your new beach wardrobe! Good luck! xoxo 

Chicken and Orange Tabbouleh Salad

Hello everyone!
I am back from my holiday in Croatia and I had the most amazing time….photo’s will follow :)

After a holiday filled with lots of naughty food, alcohol and late nights this week is definitely all about the DETOX! Healthy eating, plenty of sleep, no drinking and lots of exercise. I recently found this recipe in the free London Stylist magazine and have made it a couple of times since. It’s a delicious, easy and healthy summer meal. This recipe is perfect for using up leftover roast chicken (or be lazy like me and just buy a rotisserie chicken from the supermarket)

Chicken and Orange Tabbouleh Salad

Ingredients (serves 6) 
300g medium bulgar wheat
500ml vegetable stock
1 bag of rocket salad leaves
120g walnuts
2 tsps cumin seeds
1 orange
2 tbsps extra virgin olive oil
1 mild chilli, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 tsps sea salt
1 leek (or red onion), sliced
700g leftover roast chicken
80g fresh parsley, chopped
Juice of 1 lemon
2 tbsps walnut oil
Bulgar Wheat
Bulgar wheat is a whole wheat grain that has been cracked and partially pre-cooked. It is a naturally high-fiber, low-fat, low-calorie vegetarian and vegan food ingredient. Tough bulgur wheat is most commonly found in tabouli (tabbouleh) salad, you can use it just like rice or couscous, or any other whole grain, such as barley or quinoa.
Add the bulgar wheat to a pan with the stock, cover and put on a low heat for 5 minutes. Remove and fluff with a fork. In the meantime toast the walnuts and cumin seeds in a dry frying pan.

The original recipe didn’t include rocket, but I love this peppery salad leaf so I decided to make my salad a bit lighter by less bulgar wheat and adding some rocket!

Grate the orange zest into a pestle and mortar. Add the olive oil, chilli, garlic, dill and salt. Crush together to form a paste, then add to the cooked bulgar wheat.
Peel the orange and cut into cubes and chop up the leeks and parsley! What a gorgeous range of colours don’t you think?

Shred your leftover chicken or use ready grilled or rottiserie chicken if you don’t have any leftovers.

Now mix together the bulgar wheat with the chopped orange, leek, walnuts, cumin seeds, chicken and parsley. Squeeze over the lemon juice and dizzle over some walnut oil and combine!

And there you have it, a yummy healthy lunch or dinner!
The combination of the nutty bulgar wheat with walnuts, chicken and fruity orange is just delicious.

Recipe from cookbook ‘Supper With Rosie’ by Rosie Lovell
See the online link to the original recipe here (link).

Are there any healthy summer recipes you are loving at the moment? x

Your top five beauty investments by Veronika

Hi! I’m Veronika
and I write the style, beauty and home décor blog,
Veronika’s Blushing.  I’m delighted that Roz has asked me to guest
blog for her while she’s on holiday and I’m here today to share what I think are
your best “beauty investments.”

When you’re a style and beauty blogger, it’s tempting to try a lot of different looks and products. Over the years, I’ve had different hair colors and makeup routines, but I’ve noticed that as I get older, I’m more focused on creating a signature look and enhancing my appearance in the areas where I’ll get the most return on my efforts, both in the short and long term.

Sometimes, it’s tough to evaluate what you should spend your time (and money) on when it comes to beauty products and regimens. Here’s what I think are your best beauty investments:

Full, polished hair– Maybe you can’t afford to get a blowout like the lovely Duchess of Cambridge three times a week, but what you can do is learn how to give yourself a fantastic blowout. There are plenty of great tutorials on YouTube or, if you feel comfortable, ask your stylist to show you how to blow out your hair or go to a blow dry bar and observe the techniques that they use. The best part? A well-done blowout gives you incredible return on your investment—those 20 to 25 minutes you spend styling your hair make it bouncy for days—meaning you can skip daily washes and touch up your hair with some dry shampoo.

Kerastase Cristaliste Lumiere Liquide, one of my favorite blowout products!

Smile– The days of overly-bleached, Hollywood-perfect teeth are over—but a great smile has never gone out of style. Maintain your oral health by flossing nightly, using a whitening or stain-removing toothpaste (I like Crest Vivid White or Colgate Whitening) and if you can, invest in an electric toothbrush. I love my Sonicare toothbrush so much that I even travel with it! I also whiten my teeth once a year to maintain brightness and remove stains. I use professional trays I had made at my dentist’s office, however Crest Whitestrips Professional are also a wonderful an effective option.

Skin– Everyone wants clear, glowing, even-toned skin. For some of us, it comes naturally and for others (like me) who struggle with acne or other skin issues, keeping your skin clear can be quite the challenge. Investing in great skincare products is important—but so is prevention. In your early to mid 20’s is when you should start thinking about using eye creams and moisturizers that will help prevent premature aging, including sunscreen, which you should wear every time you’ll spend any significant amount of time in the sun. Establishing a preventative skincare routine now will be an investment that you’re still patting yourself on the back about 10 and 20 years from now. I used tanning beds a lot when I was in college and once I became aware of not only the increased risk of melanoma but also how much it prematurely ages you, my skin never touched a tanning bed again. Ten years later, I’m still reaping the benefits—at 29, I’m pretty happy with my skin and don’t have a lot of wrinkles.

Probably my most “glowing” day—at our 2009 wedding

Bright-eyed- They say that the eyes are the windows into the soul and I think they’re also one of your most important features to highlight. Bright, defined eyes can make your entire face look balanced and awake. I always use concealer on my lids as a base to even out my eye area and then I use Maybelline’s Eraser Dark Circles in the light pink “brightener” color under my eyes to perk up and lighten the entire under-eye area. I also use Benefit’s Eye Bright on my lower lash line and in the inner corner of my eye. I have a tutorial of my entire eye makeup routine here. By far the most impactful part of brightening up your eyes is curling your lashes. I feel like it instantly makes you look youthful and rested. I heat my eyelash curler with a hair dryer for a few seconds and it locks the curl in all day (and, if you want it to last extra-long, always use waterproof mascara because the formulas are drier and help lock in the curl).

Using light pink under your eyes really brightens your entire face!

Trim and Toned– By far one of the best beauty investments of all is keeping your body strong and toned. From a physiological perspective you’ll have more energy, sleep better, be stronger, more flexible and have more endurance—and from a mental perspective you’ll feel balanced, happier and more satisfied with your overall appearance. My favorite toning workings include The Bar Method, Ballet Beautiful and Pilates. I find that these types of workouts really target such a wide array of muscle groups and they work muscles you didn’t even know you had! There are also fantastic workouts available on YouTube (for free!) by the girls from Tone It Up and BodyRockTV.

On my way to the gym! All gear by Lululemon
What are your best beauty investments?
Leave a comment below or come visit me over at Veronika’s Blushing.
Thank you for having

(No Thank YOU Veronika – what a great post. It’s easy to see why I love her blog right? xoxo Roz)

When I’m grey…

Everyone is desperate to be in love. It seems to be the primary mission of almost every person I’ve ever met. However, I have recently begun to suspect that love is wasted on the young. I thought I was in love at 17 and in a haze of hormonal angst, I married him. Turns out I wasn’t really in love at all. I am certainly not in love at the moment but I am the happiest I have ever been. One day, I may meet someone who I fall head over heels in love with but by that time I want to be completely sure of who I am.

Some people are scared of meeting too late and not having enough time together but my Great Auntie Nancy met someone when she was around 80, they had a wonderful time, travelled, socialised and giggled like children in each-others company. They had six blissful years together before he died and rather than be a heartbroken widow, she is glowing with happiness because even though he has gone she is still in love.

Some people who fall in love very young can fall out of love later and then their old age is all the more sad and lonely for them. I hope I’m in love when I’m old and grey… Mrs Grey would be nice!

Happy Hump Day ♥

Today’s Happy Hump Day post was written by my dear friend (and super talented writer) Erin from The Girl from Clapham. On her blog she writes daily short stories that are funny, touching or just a great read!
Make sure you check it out; often her posts bring a smile to my face!

Jo Malone Scent Surround Diffuser by Miss Lucy

Hello readers of Dutchess Roz! My name is Lucy and I write over at about all things lifestyle, beauty, fashion and interiors. A big thank you to Roz for having me guest post on her lovely blog. It really is one of my favourites! I hope you enjoy this little review of one of my favourite brands, I’m a girl possessed. I’d considered buying a Jo Malone Scent Surround Diffuser for some time as though they’re a little pricier than the candles (£7 more) I knew they’d last me longer. I have no concept of ‘saving’ nice candles and just burn them right down as quickly as possible by burning the same one every single night until it’s gone. I realise that this is very foolish but I can’t be helped.

Having now tried the diffuser, I’d 100% recommend this to anybody who is as guilty of burning candles too quickly as I am. It’s supposed to last 4-5 months depending on how many diffuser sticks you put in at once. I, of course, have put them all in in one go but the scent is so gorgeous and persistent that I don’t care. This is a much better investment of your money if you want to buy a Jo Malone scent and I will definitely be repurchasing one of these. On the website they’re only available in Lime Basil & Mandarin, Red Roses and one of my other favourites, Pomegranate Noir.

I’ll be trying the Pomegranate Noir next time though I do really like the fresh scent of the Lime Basil & Mandarin. It’s currently residing in my bathroom but I think it’s a scent that will also work well in the kitchen so I might move it around a bit. I’m a huge, huge fan!

Thanks to the gorgeous Miss Lucy for this guest post!
I am a loyal follower of her blog so make sure you check it out.