Tuesday, 30 August 2016


What a whirlwind with a chaos on top, things have been lately. Si returned from his two months at Warped Tour, two days later we were on a plane to Kefalonia, six days later we were back with a day to relax before heading to Reading Festival. If you follow me on social media you will be aware that my weekend didn't exactly go to plan but I'll go into more detail about that in another post. 
Anyways despite everything I have three interviews to show you from my weekend at one of the best festivals in the world. 

First up is my chat with 4/5 of The Neighbourhood, who were an absolute joy to talk to about a whole range of topics including english cuisine, visuals and catchy language, their latest album Wiped Out, as well as how they all cope with the online responses to their work. I also found out they are big fans of curry, like me!

Hope you enjoy it!


Friday, 12 August 2016


Last night I attended the Gala screening of War Dogs, held at the PictureHouse, off Shaftsbury Avenue. I wasn't quite sure what that meant dress wise, because I was told that it was basically a premiere, but that it wasn't going to be held in the usual Leicester Square locations.  

This mystery around the event, meant that I didn't really know how to approach it, style-wise. Should I still think let's go all out like you do at a premiere, or should I tone it down a notch? For safety I instantly thought some sort of jumpsuit or playsuit might strike the perfect balance. It can look dressy yet sort of scream, 'I just threw this on', if it turned out that it was a more casual affair. 

I opted for this black culotte jumpsuit from Nodbody's Child. It's been the first time I dared to try this calf grazing trouser length. I've been gazing enviously at many of my personal style inspo's on Instagram and thinking they looked so cool in their culottes or shortened flairs, but it felt way out of my comfort zone - I'm just so used to trousers that fit tight to the leg and reach the ankle.  
One of my big areas of insecurity is my short lower leg, so I thought this might be a trend I should avoid, fearing it would make my squat legs look even more stumpy. 

But life can be ever so dull if you don't step out of your comfort zone, and it's not as though I was going to be climbing everest, taking a few inches off the hem of my trouser is hardly life or death in risk factor. Let's face it, even if it was a disaster that should never be repeated, I'd just not post a picture on Instagram and pretend it never happened. 

When I first put it on I was so pleased with the fit. The top section forms to the body perfectly with the legs kicking out as intended. The cut out detail exposes the slimmest part of my body so it's very flattering. But if you're someone that's straight up and down, then cut out with give the illusion of an nipped in shape as your eyes are drawn to the silhouette the dark fabric creates. 

One of my main issues with jumpsuits is the difficulties with going to the toilet, and as someone with a nervous and incredibly minute bladder, this is something that comes into the decision making process. I have to be honest that it takes a bit of time to get the zip down, a few sessions of teasing the zip down bit by bit, and using both arms to reach - but you can just about do it yourself. Unlike some brands they have thought about this issue and added a large ring to the end of the zip to help you reach and grab it. 

It was so comfortable to wear so I think it will be coming with me to Kefalonia next week. I reckon it will be perfect for those evening dinners and strolls along the strip. 

What do you think of this look? Have you tried culottes yet? 


Thursday, 11 August 2016


Today my first episode presenting A Month in the Arts for Canvas ( a channel funded by The Arts Council of England) went live. I filmed my segment at the Summer Exhibition at the Royal Academy last week, before attending the Suicide Squad Premiere. 

The Producer had managed to sort out an hour before the opening of the exhibition where we were allowed to film the intro and pick out a few pieces to talk about. Unfortunatly when we stepped into the gallery space there was a symphony of drills and other noises that would be heard on the recordings. So in the end we only had about 15 minutes to nail my intro to camera and my off the cuff chat about a few of the works. 

This is the first time I've had to learn a script, I usually just go with the flow, or have cards or an autocue. As you can imagine, I was already a bit nervous and worried that I wouldn't remember my lines (particularly as I'd had to get up at 6 to make the 9am call time), so the fact that I had to nail it with only a few goes...well, let's just say I was feeling the pressure. We'd just about got it all filmed in time before having to stop - you're not allowed to film once the show if open to the public. 

So today I got to see it for the first time, the editing team did such a great job at putting it all together and getting some great shots of the artwork on display. Featured in the video is also some other great exhibitions and plays you should be watching or visiting over the next month. I would have loved to have had bit more time to work out what I was going to say when it came to the artwork, in this one I'm pretty much saying the first thoughts that came into my head, so I'm not particulary articulate. 

Hope you still get what I'm trying to say though. Haha.

Go and show the video some love for me. I'd love to be able to talk about art, theatre, film and more on a regular basis. 

Thanks for having me Canvas.


Monday, 8 August 2016


‘Corr that was a bit tense’ were the words that came out of my friend Joe Tasker’s mouth when the credits rolled. He wasn’t wrong. In fact, it’s the first time in a while I’ve had such moist palms in the cinema - that weren’t caused by slush puppy condensation or an unfortunate melting ice cream situation.

I didn’t know anything about the film and it’s storyline before the screening, but I had high hopes. I was lucky enough to go to the screening of Catfish ( the film that came before the hugely successful series and made stars of Nev and Max) and I remember being completely blown away.…at the time it was a very different cinema experience to my norm. I came out itching to tell everyone about what I’d just seen, but simultaneously wanting to keep it to myself, not wanting to ruin the surprise and shock element of the movie for anyone else. I became an absolute pain, urging everyone to go and see the movie, and making them promise not to google the film till they had. The way Nev dealt with the unfurling mystery meant that the film escaped the risk of being cruel, taunting or belittling, but it was also the careful directing/filmmaking that made it gripping, yet sensitive. In short, I was impressed by Directors Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman, so I was excited to see that translation of this Jeanne Ryan fiction.

It’s interesting that they should choose another project that focuses on the internet age and it’s dangers and pitfalls, but with the unrelenting pace of technological advancement, the scope for making interesting films on the topic is vast, as is their appeal to the cinema going generation. 

The film stars Emma Roberts, Dave Franco (but also features a fave of mine Juliette Lewis) and revolves around an online truth or dare video game which they play via their phones, which allows people to enlist as "players" or "watchers" as the game intensifies. As they complete their dares, each new dare becomes increasingly treacherous and potentially life threatening. I’m not going to spend too much time talking about the storyline, because I want to focus on the modern dilemmas and developments the film comments on.

1.As Emma Roberts becomes successful in her role as a player of Nerve, you see her real life/3D relationships deteriorate. Not only does she drift from her best male friend, in part due to her apparent obsession with the game, but also due to the neglect of their previous regular face to face communication, you see her friend question the person she has become because of the game. We can apply this to our habit of being absorbed in our phones when in company of others, and the fact they we sometimes lose sight of what’s important due to our need to to be present, but also succeed, online.

2. Break down of Relationships. We see Emma (Vee) fall out with her best female friend Sydney (played by Emily Reade). Sydney had been doing extremely well on Nerve - she appeared to get a lot of her school status and popularity by being successful on the game - something which Vee never seemed that interesting in doing herself. When Vee decides to enrol into the game after a ‘chance’ meeting with Dave Franco in a diner, and starts to do exceedingly well doing so, you see Sydney become extremely jealous and venomous. I couldn’t help but think about our generation, who put way to much emphasis on the amount of followers they have. In this day and age a lot of people seem to think that success is only achieved via an impressive followers/subscriber/like count, and that happiness is also based on these statistics. It also made me think about the competitive nature of these online careers based on popularity and numbers. Every week I see/hear cattiness directed from bloggers to bloggers, YouTubers to fellow YouTubers and so on, unfortunately it seems that comparison and competition leads to jealousy, insecurity and ill-will. There is definitely an element of hierarchy within ‘creator’ and ‘influencers’ and when someone new comes along to join you or beat their level, they/we can feel threatened. This internet generations forgetfulness when it comes to what really matters means in the scheme of life, also means unimportant things have more of a hold on your/our happiness levels than they should. It also made me think about my personal experiences at blogger events. I’ve had some big bloggers make it exceptionally obvious that they don’t want to converse with me…perhaps because I’m not big enough online, perhaps because they asuume all smaller YouTubers want to mooch of them…or maybe because they view any other YouTuber as a threat….Who knows?!

3. Dehumanising. When things become incredibly dangerous and tense in the game and the players are at risk of losing their life, you hear an extra (playing a Watcher) at the party shout something like ‘just get on with the game.’ This week I’ve had a few comments on my channel as if I wasn’t going to see it, one saying ‘Is she still with her boyfriend?'. I found this very odd. That someone was talking about me underneath my video and not directing the question to me. It made me think about dehumanising effect of becoming a face on the internet. It feels like sometimes commenters and viewers have lost sight of the fact that the online figures that they comment on, gossip about….and judge, are humans…you know, with feelings and emotions.…and that they will likely see what you say. They're not only talking about them as if they’re not going to read the sometimes harsh messages, but they’re also willing to say shockingly bold, cruel, unjust things without a care about how it would make the person feel. Sometimes it feels like creaters are purely seen as figures with a purpose - to deliver free content to their viewers that offers all that the viewers want from it. 

4. Voyeurism. I couldn’t help but think about an episode of Black Mirror - If you haven’t watched any of the channel 4 shows, please rectify that immediately hugely haunting and thought provoking content focusing on contemporary culture. There was one that focused on the voyeur, you saw people following the main character through a really horrific experience, via the cameras on their mobile phones. Not only do we love to stalk our friends and exes on socials media but also strangers and even distant friends of strangers. Then there’s out compulsion to watch videos that have captured horrific/private events - whether it be a leaked sex tape or a horrific accident.

5. Mistrust. There’s a part in the movie where Vee has to decide whether to trust the fact that Dave Franco’s character Ian genuinely likes her, or whether he’s simply using her to win the game. Unfortunately in the pursuit of fame/success/numbers some people become ruthless, and use people for their own personal gain. In the world of YouTube and blogger many have found swifter/greater success via associating themselves with larger bloggers/vloggers.  Of course some become friends based on genuine common ground, affection or an authentic like of each other and sharing company…others not so much. Sadly the awareness of these people that form relationships based on how it will benefit them means that many large influencers build a wall up - they’re resistant about letting new people into their circles. I found this to be one of the saddest parts of being a blogger…I regularly see people guarded and stand offish, for fear of opening up to the wrong person.

6. Generation gap. The online world gives us a place to escape to. But this destination may be so alien to our parents that this creates a scary separation. Parents often have no idea what their kids are up to and for a majority of the day. They are also finding it increasingly hard to connect with them on a level that they feel engaged with. Many parents also feel like it’s impossible to keep up with the daily changes and developments, so don’t even attempt to keep up. In the film you see that Juliette Lewis (Vee’s mum) has no idea about the game, or that her daughter is involved in it, and that she is in grave danger. The kids of today are facing new dangers, that parents of past generations haven’t had to deal with in the same way. These dangers are within worlds/realms the parents aren’t a part of, making it even harder to ensure you are carrying out your role of being a protector.

7. Escaping Responsibility. There’s a point at the end of the movie where it’s clear how serious this game is, and how huge the repercussions are. At this point you see all the watchers decide to leave close their phones and leave the game. I couldn’t help but think about all the gutless anon trolls that have fake names and no profile pictures while taunting their victims with obscene or harsh commentary. It also made me think about how turning off your phone or logging out of your account doesn’t mean the damage doesn’t continue to permeate or that the activity will immediately stop. Just because you’re not looking anymore doesn’t mean you’re not still having an effect. I don’t think all people take into account that a message they may have left years ago may still be having an effect om someone elses life years on, if not forever.

That’s just a few topics of discussion the film made me ponder during and after the screening….

I feel this was a wise movie choice for Dave Franco. He’s played different roles of course, but I think many, perhaps unfairly, still see him as the cheeky mate of the main star in comedy movies - in this one we see that he can not only play a love interest, take on a more serious role, but also do muted down comedy and some edge of your seat action. He’s also got that rare ability (and face) that would allow him to play charming and appealing, but also play weird, off-beat…even evil characters. So I’d love to see him play a very dark and unnerving role soon and perhaps even a straight up romantic drama. I’ve not actually seen Emma in a movie before, but she was convincing as teen Vee, despite being 25, and had great chemistry with Dave. What a beautiful girl too, one of those faces you can’t look away from.

There was some nice post production touches in there too, ones that the internet generation would appreciate- the use of sounds that regular users of computers and phones will instantly recognise, the graphics overlayed on top of the cityscapes to show users of the game, and also the inclusion of clips of some of our most well known creaters. Dave admitted he wasn’t too chuffed with directors decision to feature James (his older brother) in the movie…let me know if you spot his subtle ‘cameo’ too. 

If you enjoyed Channel 4's CyberBully and Black Mirror, this is a movie for you. Although be prepared, it does lack the level of the sinister of Black Mirror because it is angled more towards to teen market (and given a US movie gloss), and you may find the important moral messages to be a bit glaring. However, I think it’s a very successful and timely movie, and one which our generation should be encouraged to watch - not just for it’s entertainment but for the aforementioned messages relating to contemporary/internet culture. It's vibrant (New Look and it's many lights- the ideal backdrop) pacey and delivers more than a few edge of your set, hide behind your hands, moments.

Let me know what you think!

Dave Franco during his Q and A with Jamie Laing


Thursday, 4 August 2016


Last night I was lucky enough to attend the Premiere of Suicide Squad - despite all obstacles in my way. I hadn't tweeted that I was due to go because I only got the invite through on Tuesday, and I've lost track of the amount of times I've tweeted things, then they don't end up happening, and an embarrassing backtrack is forced to commence. I also found out fairly last minute that I had secured some presenting work on the same day, and knowing how shoots tend to go, I knew there was a fair chance things could go awry and I'd end up having to give it a miss.

In the morning I  filmed for an arts media group that is funded by the Arts Council. I was reporting from the Royal Academy and their yearly Summer Exhibition. No cue cards or autocue so I had a script which I had to learn in one day - eeek. This is not easy when you suffer from brain fog and have to get a train to head to the filming location at 7am - I'm not functioning in any human way at that time of day. I won't talk too much about that as you'll see that in an upcoming weekly vlog, but I got home sometime after midday. Rather than staying in London and changing into my premiere outfit in public loo somewhere, I went home. Unfortunatly I had some work I needed to do, so two commutes to and from the city was the only way I could work around things. 

 I then had to wait for a script to arrive so I could record a voiceover for the same company. The video was due to go live Friday so I needed to get this done before heading out to the premiere. So, as you can see, it wasn't clear whether timings were going to work out for me and whether my levels of energy would allow me to see out the day's events. While I waited to for the VO script to arrive I decided to get premiere ready, to increase the chance of me being able to meet my deadline and make the swish event. In the end the deadline for the VO was pushed back so I was good to go and enjoy and evening with DC Comics at The Odeon Leicester Square.

Before I talk about my outfit......


Tuesday, 2 August 2016

Warped Tour Widow: The Truth

Two more weeks and I will be reunited with Simon. It’s flown by he says. For me, the half that’s been left at home, ‘chugged by’ would be a more appropriate description.

But in two weeks he’ll be back and you can enjoy the last bit of summer together, they say. Well, to a point. He will be back for a few weeks before heading back to America, which precedes an UK/Europe tour with Billy Talent which will take him away for A/W and my birthday. Again. But let’s not think about that right now…let’s concentrate on that small glorious window of being united.

To rely on the UK to gift us with a few sun drenched days together would be foolish, so I have booked us 5 days in Kefalonia which we will escape to, two days after he lands home from Warped Tour. Before then he’ll fit in seeing his lovely mother and a huge backlog of washing - the relentess heat on tour ensuring all his clothes are saturated with sweat. I’m sure there’s a fair bit of spilt alcohol marinating those threads too.

I know from the pixelated face-times, and the Whatsapp calls where he sounds like a robot that’s fallen down a well, that it’s a tough tour to be on. As well as the aforementioned sweltering climates of the majority of the stops, which would be fairly hard for Brit boys to cope with when stationary, they have to load in, set up, and then move about vigorously on stage. Then they have to load out, and potentially serve catering to the other bands and crew..…there’s very little time for chill. They’re also not getting quality sleep to recuperate in time for the next groundhog day like scenario. The poor guys even had to suffer from broken A.C too.

But this post isn’t about Si, or the other bands and crew on Warped Tour. This is about those keeping an eye on Instagram updates, twitter posts, and snapchats to try and feel like they are still connected to their other halves living life on the road.

I like to think I’m fairly low maintenance ( but I guess we all like to think that). When Si goes away I see it an an opportunity to really focus on work. I know we’re meant to say we can have it all, but in my experience in an attempt to have it all, one or more aspects of my life aren’t flourishing as much as they could be. Scrap that, usually one aspect or more is pretty much failing or non existent.

I am so productive in the long periods of time Simon is away, because when he’s back for these small pockets of time I want to make the most of the time and soak up as much couple time (and snuggling) as possible, and Si quite rightly expects/wants that too. But when I’m trying to be the available girlfriend when Si is home, as well as being less productive work-wise, there is less time to hang out with friends and to do all those little annoying life - admin type jobs. That’s my excuse for my jumble sale of a bedroom…

When he’s away I almost work too hard, to an obsessive extent, so my productivity when he’s around it actually probably at a healthy level, but when you’re not where you want to be in life you just say yes, push, go the extra mile, in the hope it will get you where you feel you should be.

I don’t know whether it’s just ambition and desire for a better life that fuels my need to get into this dogged approach to the daily grind. I wonder whether I just know that’s the best way to cope with my best pal being away for so long. Whenever people have something sad or troubling in their lives, their loved ones always offer up the ‘just keep busy’ tip, knowing that distraction, and essentially ignoring the issue for as long as possible, will mean the misery will have less sustain.

To be honest, on the most part I really have felt ok (ish) about Si being away, because after nearly four years I am used to it. I’ve also been part of long distance relationships for decade, which I suspect isn’t just a coincidence. I’ve always been fairly independent, I don’t mind time to myself, and have never liked the idea that when you’re coupled up you completely lose your freedom and individuality.

I wonder if I’m somehow drawn to people I know won’t be available to me all the time, because i know it will allow me to keep hold of some of the things about life that are very dear to me.  I love my friends and have never wanted to be that kinda girl that disappears as soon as she had a boyfriend, in fact in past relationships by commitment to my friends actually was the cause of many a row. So despite my acknowledgement that I do dedicate a lot of time to Si when he is home, and the percentage of time to my friends goes down, I still think it relative terms I’m pretty good at staving off that tendency for girls to abandon the friend ship.

I’ve got lost in a tangent as per usual. But what I’m trying to get at, is that I play it a little bit too cool. well, I’m not playing, it’s not a game, but my focus is on work, and the trick that distraction plays on my ability to cope, means that Si probably sometimes wonders whether I care at all. In fact my apparent aloofness would probably be the main cause of  hiccups during a period of separation. I wait for him to message or call, instead of making sure he wakes up to a nice message from me in the morning, or sending his pictures of what I’m up to as a reminder I’m thinking of him (but also as a reminder of what my face looks like).

I don’t bust Si’s balls about calling or texting. Not that I’d need to because Si is naturally an exemplary band boyfriend. He makes an effort to check in whenever he can, even if it’s when he’s in the queue to get his catering or on route to the workout tent they have on the tour. He also makes sure I know that he’s thinking of me. I’m very lucky that I'm regularly reminded that he can’t wait to see me - the feeling is of course mutual, even though I perhaps don't say it enough.

I’m very fortunate that I don’t find the concept of him being out of sight a worrying one in terms of remaining faithful. I imagine if there are any jealousy or trust issues, warranted or not, that these long stints apart would be excruciating. I have seem many other’s in more tumultuous partnerships drive themselves to despair - obsessing about every tagged pictures, every new person they follow, any girls voice they may hear in the distant background of a phone-call. Having been in a relationship with a complete, for lack of a better word, ‘fucktard’, I know that’s something I could never do again. Life is stressful enough without feeling the need to be a stealth spy.

One of the most frequent questions I have been asked in the last month or so is, ‘Why didn’t you go too’. I can’t help but think Almost Famous has warped the minds of unknowing people outside of the industry, thinking that it’s all singing  Elton John, looking flawless in boho outfits, and that much lusted after debauched kind of romance. The real answer will completely debunk all of those tumblr-esque visuals I’m afraid. Unfortunately not all bands have a budget/room to have an extra, unessential human on board a bus. In my case it’s not even something that was considered. Yes I could visit, but I sadly don’t have the money to jet out to a random state in America, for the sake of a few hours with Si. If I pay out that kind of money to visit America, I have to know it will be for a substantial amount of time and that I’d get to spend a good amount of time with Si. The reality is that my trip could fall on one day off (which they usually spend doing some laundry), the rest would be spent trying to make friends with other warped attendees , while Si is off doing all of his band duties. It would also inevitably feature more than a few moments of feeling like I was in the way or a burden. 

I know this, because even when I join the bands at festivals or gigs there is always an element of feeling like I have created extra stress in being there. Whether it’s be having to call Si during his warm up because there’s a problem at the guestlist, or because the gigs gone bad due to tech issues and my presence during the grumpy aftermath is awkward. Then there’s wanting to have a few moments together to walk around the festivals, which are punctuated by a continuous stream of interruptions from industry peoples or fans, which lead to Si wanting to retreat to the sanctuary and safety of the dressing room. My worst memories come courtesy of tour managers of bands they have been playing with who have presumed me to be a ‘band slut’ and have referred to me as that when trying to watch my boyfriend side of stage. I’ve lost count of the times I’ve watched side of stage (which is rubbish by the way, the sound is terrible) to be shoved out of the way - sometimes with good reason, when a cable comes loose - and sometimes when a walking ‘ego’ decides they have more right to be standing at the front of the collection of side stage ‘w’*****” ,than you.

I also don’t like the assumption that I have a life that I could leave, just like that…you know, for my man. Hopefully we’ve moved on from a time where our (female) role is merely as a support for the male - the person that keeps house while the man is out making money. Unless I could create a way that I could create content on tour that I was happy with, that wouldn’t involve sacrificing a huge amount of opportunities I would have got at home, then right now at least, I wouldn’t be happy to do it. Si would never expect me to come either, and I've not broached whether he would like me to, should all the above issues have satisfactory solutions.

Si and have had a couple of very natural wobbles over the weeks, mainly due to tiredness and stress on both sides, but we’ve come through it all pretty damn smoothly. So I haven’t needed a huge amount of reinforcement from friends in terms of the relationship. Yes I was lonely, but that doesn’t warrant a need for much girly pondering and over-analysing.

I have been slightly disappointed by the lack of support from friends over the last few weeks though. I get it though, it’s so hard to remember and consider everyone in your life’s different positions and struggles, particularly when getting on with your own ‘shit’ takes some much time and mental capacity. It just would have been nice if a few more of my girl friends, particularly those that have an understanding of what it’s like to be a band widow, made suggestions to meet up or grab some food, or have a girlie night in front of the TV. 

Being outside of London I already feel incredibly out of the loop, but seeing them all hanging out with pals on my snapchat when I’m at home watching Netflix on my own, has made those down times that I would usually have spent with Si a lot harder than they needed to be. I think many of them forget that I don’t have housemates to distract me or offer up that very simple thing of company and conversation. I don’t have those interactions that they all get at work either. None of those mundane ‘How are you’s?” they get when they enter the office, gossips by the coffee machine, people to grab a lunch break with or to grab a quick post work drink. You get what I’m saying. Basically, I’m more alone, than most tour widows are.

Like I said before, I usually cope well when Si’s away, missing him, his cheeky smile and fantastic cooking of course, but enjoying the focus on work. This time has been the hardest for a while. I found myself feeling really sad about missing another summer together. The years are passing with terrifying pace, and my awareness of their haste means that every summer, and all it’s possibilities for travel, adventure, and simple english summers evenings at the pub, hold great value to me. Every unfulfilling one that speeds by, my feelings of regret, resentment heightens.

Over the last few weeks I’ve also struggled with my mental health. For a while I felt I had a good hold on it. But sadly my hold is never firm, just a few unfortunate incidents levers the knuckles open, and my ability to cope escapes my grip. I’d had a few days of being screwed over in work, and losing hundreds/thousands of money as a results, then a few cruel youtube comments punched me further and bolstered the negativity. I found myself in that ‘why is it always me’ spiral, completely losing rational and any trace of hope.

My mum tried to comfort, for once acknowledging that my situation really was ’s***’ rather than doing her usual of saying how fortunate I am compared to many in the world. Si would have done everything he could to ease my anguish if he was here… but he wasn’t. And it’s in these moments you realise how much you need that one particular person. It’s not about being kept busy, having company, or someone to talk to. It’s about having that person. Your partner in crime, the person you are your most ridiculous with…and sometimes/regularly your most unattractive with. The person that takes you at your most vulnerable and wants to build you back up to being your strongest version.

I’ll be glad to have you back, and be that person for you too, even if it’s just for a short while.

Forever waiting for you.
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