Tuesday, 30 December 2014

On Repeat in 2014

Listening to Music with Paperchase Earmuff Headmuffs

Music's a funny thing. As little as a few notes in sequence can remind you of another time and place. So I thought I'd share the songs that I've been playing over and over this year. Whenever I hear them, they'll always remind me of some immortalised moment. Memories such as...

The Memory: Copying Bruno Mars' dance moves with my roomie, Michelle. From the comfort of our couch we shimmied the night away and harmonised to this song as well as his back catalogue.
The Song: Uptown Funk, Mark Ronson featuring Bruno Mars

The Memory: Near-yelling the lyrics and getting more than a little teary. I was operating on about 4 hours of sleep, was a ball of stress, and getting buried alive an ever-increasing pile of college assignments. Wallowing in self-pity, this song was the only thing keeping me sane.
The Song: Like I Can, Sam Smith

The Memory: Jogging along the boardwalk of Ocean City, beside the sea and under a newly-risen sun. Pure bliss.
The Song: Liberate, Eric Prydz

The Memory: Going back and forth, behind the camera and in front of it, taking selfies for my blog. Also, writing up many a blog post. I don't know why but I binged on this song while I blogged this year.
The Song Emily, Lower than Atlantis

The Memory: Spending hour after hour editing photos for my final photography project of my degree. My second home was the Photography Mac Labs and with my headphones on I was in my own world.
The Song: I Wanna Feel, Secondcity

The Memory: Another early morning, on the bus, heading to uni to get stuff done. Public transport's not that bad when your headphones are plugged in.
The Song: Easy, Porter Robinson

Paperchase Earmuff Headphones with Bokeh Background Paperchase Earmuff Headphones

Also, can we take a moment to appreciate how cute these headphones are?! They look like earmuffs, they are cosy like earmuffs... Okay they are earmuffs... But they are also headphones! They're from Paperchase and they are utterly adorable! Thanks to my lovely grandma for giving them to me for Christmas!

Sunday, 28 December 2014

My Year in Lists

The countdown to 2015 is well and truly on, so naturally, I'm reflecting on the year that has been, before I plan for the year ahead. For me, 2014 was a fantastic year... Between graduating from Communication Studies with a first, partying in Ocean City and challenging myself in a Digital Marketing masters, it has pushed my time management skills to the limit - but I don't regret a thing I've taken on. And 2014 for this little ol' blog? It's been the year that it found its true voice and image. Here's a little look back at the best bits of 2014 for Technicolour Dreamer...

A Selection of my Favourite Outfits of 2014

From the looks of my blog, it was a year for layering and pretty dresses. Which would be pretty accurate, if it were balanced with style posts where I'm kitted out in skinny jeans and over-sized jumpers. Maybe 2015 calls for a few more casual outfit posts?

More of my Outfits of 2014

2014 was also the year that I discovered my love for velvet - a fabric that I had been quick to dismiss when it first reappeared in Topshop and the likes. Three of my favourite pieces, in fact, are verging on entirely velvet (the shoes and dress in image 1, the skirt in image 5). In the future I won't be so quick to dismiss trends I haven't tried.


Places I Visited in 2014

This year, I've been luck enough to not just travel to, but also live in, some incredible places. Over the summer months I worked in Ocean City, Maryland, for a character-building experience during which the phrase 'work hard, play hard' has never been so apt. Waitress by day, food runner by evening, party-goer by night... A J1 visa certainly does not equal a holiday visa, but that's what's so special about it.

Places I Visited in 2014: Berlin and Paris

And then there were the random, unforgettable getaways, to Paris, Berlin and beyond. Pictures taken and memories made, the experience of travelling in 2014 will stick with me forever... Hopefully I'll be lucky enough to travel even more in 2015.

Claire Petersen's Photography Projects of 2014

This part is a bit of a mish-mash of images, but what can I say? My photography ranges from run-of-the-mill portraiture to the bizarre and surreal. The Soul's Home, my end-of-year photography project, is the work that I'm most proud of. Running around the country to find people's happy places was an adventure and I felt throughly inspired as I edited the final images. If you're wondering what the hell I'm on about, click through the 'Soul's Home' link above to read more about that project.

The Marriage of Strongbow and Aoife Reimagined by 2Fik

Another highlight was my stint as an intern for the artist 2Fik, as part of the Dublin Fringe Festival. Such fun, and it made for an exciting way to start another year living in Dublin.

2014, you've treated me well. 2015, I'm looking forward to you being just as kind. Wishing all my friends, family and fellow bloggers a very happy New Year!

Wednesday, 24 December 2014

'Tis the Season to Gorge on Chocolate

Chocolate Strawberries

It's no secret... I like to eat. So it's hardly surprising that I quite enjoy the festive season and the overindulgence that comes along with it. Getting into the spirit of things, I donned a little Christmas Eve ensemble and raided the cupboard to make chocolate strawberries. Okay, it doesn't require a high level of culinary skill, but hey, it's Christmas and I'm lazy.

Strawberries and Edible DecorationsTesco Finest Milk Chocolate

After snooping through the cupboards I found the ingredients, not only the obvious, but edible cake decorations too. Oh, and that Tesco Finest chocolate, by the way, is absolutely divine. It's a wonder any of it made its way onto the strawberries.

Dipping Strawberries in Dark ChocolateDecorating chocolate strawberries

I like to think the edible silver balls made the strawberries extra festive.

Chocolate Strawberry with Silver Balls Chocolate Strawberries on a Tray

As for my outfit: it was unashamedly garish, complete with snowmen and little red heels with little red bows.

Heart Dress and Bow ShoewsChristmas Outfit

Hope you too are having a fun Christmas with loved-ones and lots of food. Merry Christmas lovelies!

Wednesday, 17 December 2014

My Little Tiger Store Find

Tiger My Little Sweetshop

Does anyone else have a slight obsession with Tiger? I adore browsing their utterly odd assortment of bits and bobs. I always manage to leave with things that I never knew I needed in my life... But by god, now that I've seen this mini candy dispenser for 4 euro how can I live without it? How will I ever be happy again if I leave without it in my hands? I won't. I need it. Okay, Tiger makes me go a tad giddy. I probably need to get out more.

DIY Little Sweetshop from Tiger, Before and After

Anyway, I did leave the store with said candy dispenser, and with a vague intention to revamp it. I wouldn't be using it in that ever-so sickly yellow that it came in. Finally, in between assignment deadlines, I found time to whip out the spray paint and transform it. So here's my newly teal sweetie dispenser, complete with strawberry bonbons. I think it looks quite sweet (geddit?) sitting there in the kitchen.

My Little Teal Sweetshop

This has been the height of my creative output as of late. Uni assignments have been eating up my energy, but another big one will be handed in this week and then I'll be in Christmas mode! For now, though, I'm going to binge on bonbons.

Wednesday, 3 December 2014

A Beauty Bargain Hunt

Did you know that Boots has a reduced section? I'm as frugal as they come, so I can't believe that I only discovered this when I started my job at Boots. Eager to find a new beauty favourite, I scooped up my pocket-change and headed over to said section. Here's a peek at the bits and bobs I picked up...

Barry M Sparkle Nail Polish in Pink Sapphire Glitter and Diamond Glitter Painting Nails with Barry M Sparkle Nail Polish Barry M Sparkle Nail Polish in Silver

How cute are these Barry M nail polishes? Barry M are known for their fab range of colours, and getting to pick these up for €2 a pop was perfect. The colours I got were Diamond Glitter and Pink Sapphire Glitter. You can't see it too well in the photo, but the silver is great as a top coat over light colours like this teal shade I'm wearing.

Barry M Lash Vegas Mascara

Barry M might be my go-to brand for nail varnish, but until now I've never turned to it for much else. But as it happens, I was in desperate need of a mascara on the day that I was browsing the reduced section. Spotting this Barry M Lash Vegas mascara for €2 was a little bit of a lifesaver, if you'll excuse the hyperbole. Anyway, this little item does the job. I wouldn't say that I'd rush out to get it again, as it is a little clumpy, but it is ideal for lobbing into a bag and leaving there, ready to be called upon when my bare eyelashes make me feel naked.

No 7 Precision Lip Liner in Plum Plum Shade

Before now, I'd never really considered No 7 products, but since I started working at Boots I have been quite tempted to splurge. This little lip pencil was reduced down to €2.50 so I got to try the brand out on the cheap. The picture to the right gives an idea of what the colour is like. I've been wearing it quite a lot during the day, even though it is a colour that would perhaps seem too dark for everyday wear. When I blend a lighter shade of lipstick over it, though, it instantly becomes suitable for my day-to-day outings. Oh, and just a note on how I wear lip-liner: I always fill in the lip with the lip-liner, because I don't like it when only the outline has been done. Anyway, I'm liking this little product a lot. I'll definitely be venturing over the the full-priced side of the No 7 spectrum at some point in the future.

Hope you enjoyed having a nosy at the bargains I picked up! Have you tried any of these beauty bits and pieces? Let me know what you think!

Thursday, 27 November 2014

Recently: In Pictures

First off: A humble explanation for my absence... It's coming to the time of year where my college assignments are piled high. Combine that with my Christmas job at Boots and I barely have time to sleep, let alone blog. So, until Christmas, I'll probably only be uploading one or two new posts a week. Roll on the Christmas break, though, because then I'll be stuffing myself with home-cooked dinners, chilling by the fire and blogging to my little heart's content.

Here is my life in pictures... Not terribly thrilling, but I thought I'd share regardless.

Luas Line in the Morning
I've been getting up fairly early to get into town, bag a seat in a coffee shop, and work on assignments before work. Hence the deserted Luas stop at 7am.

Photobooth Picture with my Friends
It was Michelle's birthday, my dear friend and roomie, so we hit the town and got this cute photobooth pic in the club.

Going Through Photos from Graduation
Reliving my graduation by editing the pics from the day.

Stella Full of Storms Poster and Snapchat
Wish I'd taken a few sneaky photos at Stella Full of Storms. It was such a good show, I had to include it here, so I stole this Snapchat from my friend Fiona. Big congrats to Fiona, who produced the wonderful play.

Barry M Silver Glitter Nail Polish
Cheering myself up with sparkles. Barry M has the best glittery nail polishes.

Outfit I Wore Out for Drinks
An outfit from October, when I had time to go out, just for the hell of it.

Selfie, Outfit with Two Collars
Embracing my favourite style for Autumn, layers.

A few of these were taken from my Instagram, ID:clairepetersen32, give me a cheeky follow if you fancy!

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Being Thankful: A Simple Way to Feel Happier

This post isn't going to be quite as soppy as the title would suggest... I just wanted to share how I keep myself positive, even when circumstance seems intent on putting me down. And, as the title would suggest, it's all about gratitude.

A notebook of handwritten gratitudes

I discovered this technique by reading the popular self-help book The Secret. I wouldn't say I'm a die-hard fan of this book, there are certain points in the book when I felt like I couldn't roll my eyes hard enough. I just don't think The Universe gives a feck about my wellbeing, as the book would have me believe. Despite what the myriad selfies may suggest, I'm not narcissistic enough to buy into the idea that if I ask for something, The Universe will deliver it to me. The Universe aside, the book does actually have some good tips buried beneath the waffle. One of the book's fundamental tips for a successful and happy life? Being grateful.

Of course, if you sat down and thought about what you're blessed with, you'd have no choice but to be thankful and radiate happiness. But the problem is that often we don't take the time to do this. So we just solider on, never pausing to appreciate our luck. The fix is simple: Reflect on what you cherish, be thankful, and feel content. But how exactly? Read on...

Jot down three things that you are thankful for each day. These can be general, or specific to the day of writing. I've being doing this on-and-off for a while now, and my gratitudes range from heartfelt notes appreciating friends and family to... "my hair getting longer" (that is actually one of my gratitudes for the 16th of August!). Thinking of three things to be grateful for will help you focus on the positive, and writing it down makes it infinitely more powerful than the negative thoughts that may flitter through your mind.

If you feel like getting creative, why don't you draw what you're thankful for? Or, if you're not confident as an artist, you could take the time to write out key gratitudes in pretty hand writing. You could even dedicate a whole notebook to your (prettified) gratitudes, and look back on your creations when you're feeling low.

When you've got time to kill, and you've refreshed Instagram and Twitter far too many times, why don't you take the opportunity to count your blessings. Literally count them, that is. Make a mental list of all that you're thankful for and see how many can pinpoint.

***

I hope you enjoyed reading my tips for being thankful! I don't think it came across overly soppy! Anyway, now would be a great time to say: Thank you to all my readers and those of you that take the time to comment. I really am grateful for blogging community that I know and love. Muchas gracias, merci beaucoup, thank you, darlings.

...I take it back, this is super soppy. x

Wednesday, 12 November 2014

The Grad Ball: What I Wore

It may be slightly unorthodox to roll up to a fancy ball in a short skirt... But it's not as strange as me tottering around in my wedges as I push couches out of the way and rearrange the whole living room just to get a full-length snap of my outfit. Blogger's problems, eh?

As my camera is god-awful in low light, I usually shy away from taking my outfit posts indoors. But with those evenings getting darker, and long days spent at work and college, it's near impossible for me to take photographs in the natural light. The upside of all these restrictions is that I've been forced to get creative. Hence the furniture rearrange and a longer exposure time when taking the photographs. Just. Keep. Still... Hold. That. Pose.

Graduation Ball Outfit with a Short Skirt
Top & Skirt: Foravi // Shoes: Office
Green Skirt and Electric Green Wedges Electric Green Wedges from Office

I put together this outfit for my graduation ball. The event was on at a swanky hotel, where we got a three course meal (complete with everybody's favourite blogger cliché: macaroons! Why did I not snap a picture of this?) and entertainment to boot. It was the last hurrah, the final time we're allowed to be reckless students. Of course, we'll still act like reckless students regardless, but it's somehow more acceptable at the graduation ball.

Anyway, this is the outfit that I wore as I partied the night away with my cherished uni friends. If you were going to a ball, would you keep it classic with a long flowing dress, or go for something a bit different like this top and skirt combo? Do share, I love hearing from you.