Jessops Open New Concept Store in Sainsburys Oldbury

It is a sad time when it comes to photographs. The days when we ran to have our holiday snaps developed, clutching that treasured roll of film have long since passed, with photographs now destined to live in cyber space, on Instagram and Facebook, no longer placed in albums to be looked at and enjoyed by our and future generations. But photography giants Jessops are aiming to change all this, using their new concept stores to help us fall in love with our photographs all over again.

I was invited to the opening of the new concept store which is based in the Sainsburys supermarket in Oldbury town centre (it will always be Sava centre to me!). The idea of the new store is that it gives you lots of different ways to love and print your images, from fast development of photos from cameras and mobile phones, to prints that appear on canvas, cushions, mugs and photobooks. Many services can be done in the time it takes you to do your shopping, making it both quick and convenient. In addition, the stores have a range of photo albums, scrap booking ideas and interesting and beautiful picture frames to purchase that will showcase your images to perfection.

The store is pretty gorgeous, with all the machines very easy to use, and photographs that can be ready in as little as 25 minutes. I like that the staff are both friendly and knowledgeable, and can give you advice about the options for your photographs, for instance, I wanted to print a photograph onto a canvas  but the res wasn’t really good enough. I was given advice for better options and shown exactly how they would look so I could make an informed decision.

With a great range of Instax instant cameras that will appeal to those who love Instagram, and beautiful displays that show just what you can do with your photographic memories, I think the Jessops concept stores are going to be a great success and help us to once again fall in love with our prints.


A Fantasy Fashion List

It may almost be March (although no one bothered to tell the weather…) but for many of us, the financial hangover from Christmas is still there. Christmas is a very expensive time for people in general, and in my house, it is also the time of Joe’s birthday which makes it even more costly. Shopping treats have been something not on the menu, although I must admit I have enjoyed filling online baskets, only to leave the final checkout.

If you are feeling the pinch as we head into Spring, you could look at a bank loan or Lendgreen Installment Loans to tide you over. Alternately, you could look at making some extra money online through doing online surveys or selling some of your unwanted stuff (Christmas presents maybe) through eBay, or the online buy and sell sites, many of which have now popped up on Facebook, and are useful as you can sell things locally, avoiding excessive postage charges.

If you are avoiding the spend, then a fantasy shopping list can’t really do any harm. Here are some of the things I have been putting in my basket, and hope to add to my wardrobe once my spending drought ends.

Biba at House of Fraser

Biba is one of my favourite labels, one I look out for in Vintage shops for the original Barbara Hulanicki pieces, and also one I love to now indulge in at House of Fraser. Biba is an affordable luxury, and I’m lucky that my branch of House of Fraser also has a bargain basement where you can pick up some amazing pieces for considerable discounts.

Here are the current pieces that I love.

Biba Pleat Front Printed Blouse £59 Click to visit House of Fraser

Chain Detail Midi Dress £80 Click to visit House of Fraser

Pleated Victoriana Blouse £60 Click to visit House of Fraser

Longline Border Print Kimono £80 Click to visit House of Fraser

Somerset By Alice Temperley

Somerset by Alice Temperley is a collection by one of Britain’s best designers for John Lewis. Temperley’s boho style has been a favourite amongst celebrities for many years, and the Somerset collection is both luxurious and wearable. I have a few pieces in my wardrobe already, and love the elegance of Alice’s style.

Here are some picks that I am loving this season.

Somerset by Alice Temperley Frill Two Tone Jumper, Coral £89 Click to visit John Lewis

Somerset by Alice Temperley Button Through Lace Dress, Navy £160 Click to visit House of Fraser

Somerset by Alice Temperley Star Jacquard Top, Teal £99 Click to visit John Lewis

Somerset by Alice Temperley Frill Pointelle Knit Jumper, Coral £59 Click to visit John Lewis

Do you have a wishlist for your wardrobe this Spring?

Top Ways to Detoxify Your Life

Things surround us every day that can be harmful to not only our health but also our well-being. These toxins can be in every part of our daily routine from the food we eat, the people we are surrounded by and the products we use. Most toxins in small amounts won’t do significant harm, but there are some aspects in our lives where large amounts of toxicity can start to affect everything from how we feel, to the ways we deal with simple situations. There are plenty of ways to detoxify your life, starting from looking at a simple grocery shop to making big life changes.

Check out some of the most common methods of making steps to a happier, healthier you.

Avoid buying chemical products

Knowledge is power, and if you do your research, you’ll start to see just how many chemicals are in your everyday grocery shop. It’s hard not to purchase them on a daily basis, as they feature in everything from cleaning solutions and laundry products to toothpaste and air fresheners. You may start to notice small changes in health such as respiratory issues and gastrointestinal problems but long-term exposure cause other illness and severe allergic reactions.

It can be surprising just how many products have some traces of harmful chemicals; either in their composition or on the packaging, and removing these items from your life is the best course of action. Small changes to your grocery shop such as choosing organic products over the cheapest option are a great way to start the process.

Quit smoking

This is probably one of the most obvious toxic elements in someone’s life but quitting smoking takes out a host of chemicals that you breath in on a daily basis. There are no health benefits to smoking and the chemical makeup of this habit is undeniably one of biggest contributors to severe illness. Everyone has heard of the dangers related to smoking but still so many people continue to smoke regardless.

Cutting out smoking has tons of health benefits that will help detoxify your life including lower blood pressure, more energy, improving fertility and younger looking skin to name a few. Quitting now could see fast benefits for a healthier body and mind.

Get sufficient rest

The body needs time to rest and recuperate after each day but for many people getting enough sleep is a tricky task. With the pressures of everyday life, there are many factors that can see regular sleep patterns disturbed which affect day-to-day living on an emotional and physical level. It is recommended that you get approximately 7-8 hours sleep a night, so your body has time to heal and refresh for the day ahead.

There are several problems that can affect sleep including stress and anxiety to the food we consume, but there are numerous ways to ensure we have sweet dreams. Try small things such as turning the television off a little earlier before bed, avoid looking at your phone and taking some time to relax fully will help get you off to sleep.

Exercise more

We are constantly told the health benefits of getting more exercise, but yet we still don’t make time to sweat it out and start changing our health for the better. Any type of exercise where you raise your heart rate is not only good for the body; it’s great for overall well-being. Exercise is also the best way to get rid of toxins in the body through your sweat. If you are able to get to the gym, relaxing in a sauna after a workout is also great for increasing sweat production and ridding your body of everyday toxicity.

Sort your finances

Money problems are one of the biggest causes of stress in families and can put a lot of pressure on health and happiness. If you’ve had money issues in the past, bad habits can begin to snowball and feel like a never-ending circle of misery. Taking charge of your finances and creating a plan is the best course of action for detoxifying your life and giving you extra peace of mind. Simple things such as budgeting, paying off existing debts and making cost-efficient choices in your life for bills and everyday shopping can make all the difference in the long run.

Get rid of toxic people

Removing toxic people from your life can be a hard step to take, as there are so many factors in a relationship to consider. Toxic people can be just as bad as toxic chemicals in your life and can cause a host of issues from emotional and physical distress. Sometimes we hold onto people and relationships, as change can be a difficult path to take but realizing the toxicity some people may cause in your everyday life may be the catalyst to becoming happier and more confident person.

Big life changes

For some people, big life changes are one of the best ways to detoxify your life. Depending on your circumstances this could mean moving home or relocating is the best option. This can be a huge step, but sometimes it is needed to fully embrace a new way of living and experiencing new things. A new location can feel like a breath of fresh air and give you the best start for changing things up for the better. This process doesn’t have to be stressful either as there are many ways to make moving simple, from hiring a local mover to getting family and friends to help pack and in no time you’ll be happy in your new home and ready to start afresh.

Getting rid of toxicity in your life can be a challenging time. Most ways to remove toxins is quite simple, but there are some larger life changes that can take getting used to. It may be a tough path, but the benefits to your health and wellbeing could make you see the world in a whole new light.