Monday, 31 December 2012

Best of 2012

2012 was an awesome year...we had the queen's diamond jubilee, the Olympics and Obama's re-election. On a more personal note: we travelled to new locations, gained new degrees, met some awesome people and simply just partied it up! So to celebrate what has been an all round fantastic year we give you our favourite outfits of 2012...

Dressed down in Denim

Fikki: These H&M riding pants were one of my favourite purchases of the year. I wore them quite a bit during the days I spent in a laboratory earlier this year. I chose to wear them with a denim shirt and riding boots, adding to the equestrian look. The boots sadly died after a year of serious use so I'm currently on the hunt for a replacement. 

Lola: Bought this dress in the charity shop I frequently go to near my mum's house. It originally was down to my ankles but with my sewing machine I managed to make it one of my favourite dresses of the year. I love the simple shape and it was perfect for a sunny day in Manchester. Plus, the setting made it one of the best posts I have done. 

Celebrating in Summer Florals

Fikki: Worn twice this year and featured twice on the blog. I absolutely adore this dress and I'm constantly surprised by the fact it's from New Look (their limited edition range). I think its the perfect celebration dress as its a simple shape but with a very striking print on it. I wore it to celebrate the end of my BSc degree and  to my cousin's Nigerian engagement, receiving lots of compliments on both occasions.  I still regret not buying the matching trousers. 

Lola: Worn to a family wedding, this dress was made for me by my seamstress in Nigeria. It's the kind of girly shape I go for and had two made in chiffon. Looking closer, I realise I lost the spike earrings I was wearing. sad times. 

Blogger's favourite: H&M Floral Trousers

Fikki: These trousers were all over the blogosphere and I succumbed to buying them as they were perfect for the summer! I wore them with a simple maroon top and heels for post exam drinks. I could finally enjoy the great weather after months of revision hibernation and this was the perfect outfit to do so in.  

Lola: I remember buying these when they came out. I randomly went into H&M to check if they were in stock and once I spotted them I quickly called Fikki and bought two pairs for us. I was quite sceptical about pairing these trousers with a powder pink sweater but thankfully it worked well for dinner with the boyfriend and his family. 

And the rest...

These outfits represent something from each season and some of the bargains I got my hands on. I bought one of my favourite skirts in Primark for £1 in January which I wore with everything (top left) and picked up a pretty dress from Urban Outfitters in the summer (top right) as part of a buy one get one free promotion. I toured charity shops to death and got the long spotted skirt for £3 in a Disbury charity shop. And finally in the autumn, I got a leather skirt from H&M for £7 and the top for £1.50. 

Fikki: These four pictures do not only show some of my favourite outfits but also the four hairstyles I wore this year, from the mini afro I wore in Malta (bottom right) to the long locks I curled for my trip to see phantom of the opera with the boyfriend(bottom left). The pictures also document key moments this year which include wearing an ankara dress at my mum's 50th birthday (top left) and chilling in baggy trousers and a crop with my two of my favourite ladies in Mexico (top right)...It's definitely been a great year! 

It means alot to us that people actually read and comment on our blog so thanks so much. Through blogging, we have met some really lovely people, gained some new skills and had opportunities that have been great.  Have a fabulous time partying/spending time with family today and wish everyone a Happy New Year!


Wednesday, 26 December 2012

'Cause we like to party...'

One thing Nigerians love to do is throw a party! And after only 3 days on Nigerian soil, I have been to two parties - my cousin's wedding and my great uncle's birthday...both on the same day!

It meant I got to see uncles, aunties and cousins from both sides of my family, many of whom I hadn't seen for several years. It was a great day but I think I might have eaten a bit too much...all adding to the Christmas weight!

For some reason, which is still unclear to me, I chose not to bring any Nigerian traditional wear so when it came to finding an outfit for the wedding, I struggled. My luggage seemed to be filled with inappropriate mini dresses or skirts. Luckily I brought along this new look dress. I swagged the clutch bag for £1.50 at my new favourite charity shop in's in the most random location but its filled with great vintage finds!

I didn't take my camera along with me, as it couldn't fit in my bag so all these photos were taken with my iPhone.

Dress/NewLook; Shoes/Office; Clutch/Charity Shop 


Sunday, 23 December 2012

Zara Sunglasses

Sunglasses/Zara; Lipstick/MAC Ruby Woo

To many, this might seem the wrong time to talk about sunglasses but I got an awesome pair for Christmas from my mum while we were at Heathrow duty free on our way to Nigeria. Yes, they have a zara store in the airport. So my mum and I decided to go shopping whilst we waited for our flight to be announced. The wayfarer style sunglasses have always been the ones to suit my face best so I was l went for that over any other shape. I was especially drawn to the mix of tortoise shell with blue. Excuse the grubby finger marks in the pictures, oh god.

Also, anyone use mac's ruby woo? I always thought red lipstick did not suit me at all. Recently bought it to try out due to it's popularity amongst many bloggers and I absolutely love it. It's such a beautiful shade of red and suits oh so well.


Friday, 21 December 2012

A Sunny Christmas


 As this post goes up, we are both currently on our way to Lagos, Nigeria for Christmas and New Year. I (Lola) go every year like clockwork for the Christmas holiday season but this is Fikki's first time in a while. It should be a great time seeing family, enjoying the lovely weather and just relaxing before starting a new term in January. For our holiday wardrobe, we basically took out our Mexico/Tunisia holiday wardrobe and added a few items here and there. We will be showing what we did and what we wore on holiday so expect a few posts coming up soon.

 We would like to wish everyone a very lovely Christmas!


Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Festive Window for Next (Competition)

Next are currently holding a competition on Jess' blog, Feeling Stylish. To enter, all you have to do is style a Christmas shop window using products from Next including clothes and homeware. The focus can be on anything you want. The winner gets a £500 giftcard to spend! Competition ends 21st December so get entering.

We can't build an actual shop window as our internet skillz are quite limited so showing what we would put up is second best. When it comes to the holiday season, its all about the sparkle and shine and  we focused on dresses that will make any shop window beautiful. We picked out these three dresses as would look amazing at any Christmas and New Year parties. Next have really done it this season with their party dresses and we especially love the first dress with the embellishment which we paired with sandals for an evening party.

Hope everyone is well prepared for Christmas. Fikki and I are currently packing so we can go on holiday so expect lots of posts about what we got up to in Nigeria. 


Monday, 17 December 2012


Or as I shall now call it, the day I froze my ass off and subsequently got very ill. Last week Wednesday, I graduated from my Masters in International Politics in -4 degree weather. For some reason be known to me, the University of Manchester choose to have graduation ceremonies in December. The last time I graduated, the weather was beautiful and sunny. Apart from freezing due to my outfit choice, It was a very lovely day with family and friends, plus I am very happy to have completed this stage of my life. It was quite a gruelling year but I learnt alot more in this one year than I did in my undergrad about myself, my strengths and the way I like to work. I will now be starting law school in January merging the political and legal for my career.


Saturday, 8 December 2012

Buttoned Down

Officially finished another segment of medical school! Just tying up a few loose ends before the semester officially ends so that I can run away to Nigeria for some Christmas sun (sounds so strange!).

It has been a good semester...I've learnt how to spot psychiatric problems, fix broken bones, treat swollen joints and so much more...all in the space of 12 weeks! In the new year, I'll be off to Wigan for my obs and gynae rotation which I can't wait to start. The pregnant women will be a dream but I'm definitely not looking forward to seeing lady bits with, let's just say, interesting problems...

On to the fash talk - I've had this button down dress for a while and now rarely pull it out to wear.  Its by Pringle of Scotland and used to be one of my favourite dresses back in sixth form. Since its officially winter (it's sooo cold in Manchester!), I wore it with a cardigan (not shown) and my H&M coat which is in need of a dry clean as I may have worn it to death.

Hope everyone is having a fab december! I'm currently at home with the family for the weekend as my sister came in to visit from Malta for a couple of time is definitely the best!


Thursday, 6 December 2012

Winter Staples

Coat/Zara; Jeans/New Look; Jumper/Thrifted; Shirt/Primark; Shoes/Urban Outfitters for Underground

I'm not one to really wear jeans and I only own 3 pairs currently. I much prefer trousers or tights over anything but while I was in Westfield, the editor of Grazia was giving a talk on jeans in New Look and she was wearing them. Fell in love with the colour and look instantly. They are still in some stores if anyone is interested.

 When it comes to outer winter wear, I'm a repeater. I don't like buying new winter coats if the one I have is perfectly alright. I rather spend the money on new shoes! The coat was from the Zara winter sale 2 years ago for £40. It's probably one of my best buys ever as its so warm and looks good all year round when I need it. Except for when it snows and I bring out my yeti coat. The creepers, I've had for over a year. Got them in an Urban Outfitters sale, also for £40. They were part of a collection that UO did for Underground. I wear them almost every day, come rain or shine. Looking forward to the sales in the new year, hopefully I can find some great bargains all over again.


Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Pastime Bliss Love....Manchester Christmas Markets

Hello everyone and welcome to a new feature we decided to add to the blog. For our Pastime Bliss loves.... series, we will we showcasing places and events we love on a monthly basis. We visit quite alot of places  and there are always new ones to try out and thought it would be nice to share places that we think are worth going to. This includes restaurants, shops and the lot. The first one on our list is a festive one - the Manchester Christmas Market which is an authentic German style market which runs from the end of November every year. Situated in front of the Manchester town hall on Albert square and nestled in the pathways of certain streets around the centre, there are little wooden huts for all the vendors from around Europe who come to sell their goods. When these were being put up a month ago, it was quite exciting and signals that Christmas is just around the corner.

The obligatory festive jumpers

There are stalls from different traders selling gifts, clothes, food and Christmas ornaments. Most of the traders come from all over Europe to give that German style market. There are also craft sellers from around the world that come to display and sell art, jewellerysculptures and unusual Christmas decorations.

Food wise, its all about the beer halls, bratwurst sausage, French cheese, hog roast, hot chocolate with baileys, mulled wine, strudel, mini pancakes and sugar waffles. From a review we saw online, one could even have a three course meal just going around the markets. 

Strudel time!

When we visited, It was extremely busy and for a weekend visit we are not surprised  We later found out that they broke records with the highest daily turnout of visitors (around 85,000). It has fast become one of the most popular markets in the country. If you want to visit and soak in the atmosphere of an authentic Christmas market without the crowds, we do recommend visiting during the week. Our first experiences of a Christmas market was in Manchester since moving here 4 years ago and it has made it very lovely. Even though we don't always buy much, it is nice wandering through the markets and it really gets us into a lovely and cosy festive spirit.

© Pastime Bliss - Manchester Blogger | Fashion, Travel and Lifestyle Blog | Manchester | UK

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