A North East Culture, Lifestyle & Fashion Blog.
Girl in the North: A North East Culture, Lifestyle & Fashion Blog.
Saturday, 18 May 2013
Sunderland Live's Feel Good Festival seems like a distant memory now - as soon as it was over, work started on the up and coming June programme. As if the One Direction Stadium announcement wasn't enough, further details will be announced on the Sunderland Live twitter tomorrow - so make sure you give them a follow.
During Feel Good Festival, I was so busy running around and looking after the fabulous group of bloggers who attended that I didn't get that much of a chance to take photos. So I thought these few out-take shots from the day would make a good post to give you a taster of what it was like.
The day started off super early in The Museum and Winter gardens, it was very much the calm before the storm atmosphere as after opening nearly 2500 people passed through the doors! At 11 I headed along to meet the blogging team at The Bridges - where I managed to convince Amy to do a live bootcamp & Katie to tickle the boys from the Wellness Centre during their rowing challenge!
Sunderland Live intern Shannon and I, then took the bloggers on a trip to The Minster which had been transformed into a very tranquil like spa for the day. After everyone had had free reiki, reflexology and massages, the girls all popped for lunch in The Minster cafe which was had a special Feel Good menu. All fed and watered on their return, we headed back to The Museum. The day turned out to be lovely & warm and combined with the walking, here's an outfit/swollen feet photo! Nice!
After been massaged, tattooed (falsies), educated on skincare and given every sample imaginable, the only things left to do was hair! Luckily Feel Good Festival had that sorted & the Jonathan Pickup Pop Up hair salon transformed the bloggers hair into fabulous bows before heading to the Pasta Party in Mowbray Park!
It was a fantastic day, followed up by a brilliant Sunday and I want to say a massive thanks to all the girls who came along and wrote about the event. We can't wait to see you next year!
Friday, 10 May 2013
The other week I mentioned I'd been invited by Publicity Seekers to be a guest speaker at the North East, Women What Do business event. It had been a long day planning Feel Good Festival with Shannon but we headed off to Cafe One77 in Hartlepool armed with our laptops!
The event was a huge success, I was a little shocked by how many people there actually were there! There were several fashion and beauty businesses exhibiting and just as we arrived the food was brought out. So we grabbed a glass of rose and some snacks before I got the presentation ready. The next stage of the evening was all about the businesses, each one gave a quick 2 minute chat on who they were to the crowd of women and then I was up!
When I was in school I always used to be nervous giving presentations but I actually quite enjoy them now. I love what I do and I enjoy all aspects of my job, so it's quite easy to talk about. The next twenty minutes flew over but it was great and I enjoyed answering everyones questions!
Lots of people came over afterward and said how much they'd enjoyed the presentation so I was really pleased. It was a lovely night and great meeting everyone afterward. There are so many talented North East businesses out there - it's really great to see.
As it was a fashion themed event, I thought it would be fun to share what I wore - since becoming self-employed I've started to find I have my own uniform coming together and of course this is my standard outfit! Topshop Leigh Jeans, with various tops - the one I wore was this Breton top from River Island and go to New Look Heels. To smarten the fact I am in jeans, I cannot live without Zara Blazers. We all know I'm not that brave in fashion department so I've been throwing in bright coloured bags & necklaces to make my outfits a little more finished.
Thanks once again to Sam from Publicity Seekers for inviting me along and for being an amazing host and to all the ladies who attended and welcomed me.
Thursday, 9 May 2013
The other day I was on my way back from a press conference in South Shields (about a music festival but more on this later) and I was so hungry. Been in a bit of a rush on the morning meant I'd missed breakfast and then I was busy taking notes. So I thought since it was a nice day, I'd stop off somewhere on the way back to Sunderland.
So I pulled over when I got to Cleadon Village and was heading for my usual sandwich haunt when I spotted Happy Organic! I'm not one for organic food normally but I'd heard lots about this little cafe but had just never found the time to get there. I made a bee-line for it and I'm so pleased I did. I stepped in and did a little gasp because it was just so... up my street (almost literally). Furnished with church pews and bright gingham bunting, I was in my element.
An assistant soon ushered me out the doorway, offering me a seat while I chose what I wanted. I wanted to sit in but unfortunately I had to get back and I quickly chose a BLT sandwich to go, I knew whatever I ordered I'd love it. The other great thing about HO was my black pepper allergy didn't faze them. Everything is cooked and prepared fresh on order and as the name would suggest, organically.
While my sandwich was prepared in the kitchens out back, I took a while to soak up all things twee in the cafe. From funky signage to protein bars, Happy Organic has everything the health food lover could want. You can even pick up your local organic groceries too as they have locally produced, milk, cheese, butter and more in a fridge just as you head in.
My sandwich arrived and I grabbed a Belvoir Elderflower Presse to go with it before proclaiming my love for the place to Luisa Minchella, the owner of Happy Organic. I only realised afterwards Luisa is the daughter of Romano Minchella who owns one of my other favourite restaurants, Bistro Romano just opposite - it's clear producing amazing food is in the family genes!
Happy Organic is open Mon-Sun 8am-6.30pm and you'll find them on Cleadon Front Street. Luckily for those of you who don't live close though, HO also sell online. You can shop a small selection of their goods on their website here. Enjoy & remember to let them know, Girl in the North sent you!
Monday, 6 May 2013
If you're a regular Girl in the North reader then you'll probably know by now how much I love my music. From Stevie Wonder to Alexisonfire, I'm a bit of mixed bag when it comes to tastes - if I can dance to it or scream to it... I'm generally happy with it!
And what I love best is when music is used for a good cause. So when my good friend Woodie sent me a message the other night telling me about his event this Saturday The Projects - I jumped at the chance to go. The Projects is a day and evening of live music to raise awareness and funding for Sounds Change Adult Outreach projects in Sunderland. Sounds Change create opportunities for socially disadvantaged young people and adults and inspire them to live productive and fulfilling lives by providing a diverse range of music workshops. Most importantly though, through these workshops Sounds Change not only develop skills and have fun, they also uncover hidden talent!
A lot of people seem to forget Sunderland has produced some fantastic musicians over the years, from Dave Stewart of the Eurythmics, The Toy Dolls, Kenickie - not to mention more recently Alex Kapranos of Franz Ferdinand, Frankie & The Heart Strings, Field Music and of course The Futureheads. So it's great to have causes like The Projects to keep this trend going.
To support the cause, some of the North East's best musicians and bands including The Good Child, The White Elephant Band and Built Like a Gun, will be playing throughout the day in one of my favourite North East venues, The Sunderland Minster. It's the most fantastic thing, being in a Cathedral and hearing rock and soul and blues music. To join in with the fun and support the cause head on over to The Projects Facebook Event Page - tickets are only £5 and are selling quick, so make sure you don't miss out & I'll see you there!