Fashion Revolution Day 2016

Three years ago today, Rana Plaza, a building housing clothing factories collapsed, killing over 1000 people and injuring over 2000. The clothing factories were making goods for companies such as Primark, Benetton and Monsoon and despite warnings about cracks appearing in the building, the buildings owners ignored them. Three years on, and justice still hasn’t been served for the victims or their families, with very little compensation being paid. Not only that, there have been other tragedies within the clothing industry since. People shouldn’t have to work in buildings so dangerous that they are at risk of collapse. No one should die making clothes. Companies should know exactly who is making their products and under what conditions they are working in. Saying that they simply weren’t aware of the issue is not enough. It’s 2016 for crying out loud!

Fast fashion isn't free

[Image source]

This year, Fashion Revelution is asking everyone to find out #whomademyclothes. Every company should be have a transparent supply chain. I don’t think that’s too much to ask for in this day and age. Surely, they’ve got nothing to hide and if companies like People Tree can do it, then why can’t all the others? So, this year, I’m asking Seasalt, People Tree and Oasis #Whomademyclothes. I’d like to be able to thank them for the amazing job they did on some of my favourite items.


[who made my clothes? image courtesy of Fashion Revolution]

Every company should be transparent throughout all aspects of the supply chain. No one should be exempt from this and no one should die making clothes, working in dangerous conditions. Not now, not ever. We mustn’t stop asking companies #whomademyclothes? until each and everyone of them can answer us. Bring on the fashion revolution!

The Importance of self care

So I’m back after a bit of a blogging hiatus. Things got pretty busy for a while there, between work, redecorating and getting sick so something had to take a back seat. It wasn’t planned, just unavoidable, and I did let the busyness get to me. I forgot how important it is to take time out for myself. I’ve been down that road before and it didn’t end well. As a result, this post is a little note to myself, a reminder to take care of myself, that’s its just as important as any job or chore that’s on my to do list.

  1. Make time for myself. I know, I know, this sounds ridiculous. How can you ‘make time’ for anything, especially if you’ve got an ever increasing list of things to do, which is probably pretty much everyone I know. But it is important because it can make you feel better, give you a more positive outlook on what’s going on and help you feel more organized and in control, which for me, helps reduce my anxiety. For example, I like to do a diy manicure/pedicure once a week. Nothing fancy, I don’t even have to paint them, though that’s lovely to do too. I used to do this religiously when I was less busy and it was simply part of my routine, but a lot of the time, it’s something that gets pushed down the list and doesn’t get done. It’s not the end of the world, but not doing it often means I don’t feel as in control as I could and I often feel like I’ve myself down a bit. I therefore need to make sure I prioritise this kind of thing and do it on a Friday evening and not leave it until the last moment on a Sunday, when I’m too tired to do it. I need to make sure I’m higher up on my list of priorities.

Self care

  1. Do something I love. I usually try to leave school reasonably promptly on a Friday, just to avoid getting caught up in rush hour traffic, though it doesn’t always work out that I can. A few weeks ago, I managed to do this. There were lots of things that I could’ve done, lots of urgent things on my to do list, but instead, I ran a hot bath, dropped in a gorgeous Lush bath bomb and lounged about in the bath for over an hour, watching Scandal & Grey’s Anatomy on my iPad. It was bliss! It was the perfect antidote to everything that was going on and I felt sooooo much better for it. It didn’t cost much (I always try to have a selection of bath bombs on hand) and it meant that I could put the week behind me and be in my jammies and on the sofa when I was done. It was just what I needed and I must remember to do this more often. I need to get out in the fresh air and walk. I need to veg out in front of my favourite film and do nothing. I need to lay on the sofa reading a decent book. Anything that’s not work or jobs.
  2. Junk food is not my friend. When I get busy and tired, I want to cook less than normal. So instead of healthy home cooked meals from scratch, it’s oven chips and beans or takeaway. Instead of a healthy, vegetable packed lunch made at home, it’s a white bread sandwich with crisps that repeats on me all afternoon. All this means I run on empty, feeling crap, a little heaver and feeling all kinds of guilt. When will I learn? I’m not saying no junk food or takeaways ever, but toast and crisps for lunch for two weeks is not balanced. It’s lazy and a sure fire way to feeling worse. In order to have the energy to keep going and not feel like crap, a balanced diet is essential. Take the time to cook properly (as properly as I can!) and make sure there’s plenty of vegetables.

When I first thought about writing this post, I had no energy whatsoever and was coming down with my first cold in ages. It hit me pretty hard. I knew that I hadn’t been looking after myself properly and felt really guilty. I’m hoping that I learn from this and make sure that I do these things as best as I can, if for no other reason than being worth it.

TV Recommendations – March 2016

The last couple of weeks have been incredibly busy, unexpectedly so, not leaving me a whole lot of time for doing much of anything, let alone getting my head around blogging. However, I have an uncanny ability to be able to work and watch TV so have been enjoying some fab shows of late and there’s quite a few fab ones returning to TV, which I am very much looking forward to.

TV Recommendations_March{Trapped – BBC4 || Vinyl – Sky Atlantic || Jordskott – ITV Encore/Now TV || Vikings – Amazon Prime}

TV Recommendations March 2016 {The Walking Dead – Now TV || House of Cards – Netflix || The Night Manager – BBC One}

We happened across Trapped one day when we were looking for something, anything, to watch. (We were going through a bit of TV drought!) A crime drama set in Iceland is pretty much ideal TV for me and Trapped doesn’t disappoint. It’s not as slick as The Killing or as deep as The Bridge but it’s still pretty decent TV and it’s growing on me every episode. It’s set in Iceland, during some wicked winter storms, meaning they have to battle the elements while getting to the bottom of a murder. As with everything, there are twists and turns all along the way and with most Scandi dramas, they are dark. Fab stuff.

Vinyl is about the development of the music industry in the early 1970’s and as you might imagine, it is full of sex, drugs, rock ‘n’ roll, with a little bit of murder and plenty of drama thrown in for good measure. The main character is played by Bobby Cannavale and pretty much everything he is in is awesome so I knew it would be well worth watching and it is. I’m not quite sure what is coming next, as I don’t think it’s historically accurate plus I have no clue about 70’s music, but it’s really interesting to watch.

I know we’re late coming to the Jordskott party, but the whole series is on ITV Encore on Now TV and while we were waiting for new series to start and old programs to return to TV, we thought we’d give it a go. It’s based in Sweden (yes, another Scandi drama with subtitles) but this is not like other Scandi dramas, we thought it was, but quickly it became like a cross between The Killing and The X-Files. We’re only half way through the series but I’m intrigued to find out what on earth is going on. Well worth watching, especially if you’re short on shows.

Vikings is back and it’s time we found out what Rollo is playing at with the French, whether Floki will be punished for killing Athelstan and what injured Ragnar’s next move is. I really enjoyed the last series and think this one has the potential to be epic. I know that it’s not historically accurate, but who cares! Vikings is full of drama, action, intrigue and mystery. If you haven’t started watching it, then you most definitely should.

The Walking Dead is back for the second half of it’s sixth series and it shows no signs of slowing down. After the action packed mid-season opener which had me on the edge of my seat, hardly taking a breath, there are a few new characters that are sure to mix things up a bit. And by mix, I mean get some of the main characters killed. Who knows which characters are going to the survive the series. I have my fingers crossed for some of my favorites (some I don’t mind losing!) I’m not 100% about this Jesus guy, but then, he may be the one to save them.

So we might* have watched series 4 of House of Cards in one weekend. (*definitely did!) This series see the presidential campaign really starting to pick up speed, and I really think that this series sees a return to form for the Underwoods. There’s plenty of planning, scheming, inappropriate behaviour and lots and lots of soliloquies. I don’t want to say to much as I don’t want to spoil it but OMG! Good to see more of those. My only complaint? Having to wait twelve months until the next installment!

I’m officially nominating Tom Hiddleston for the next Bond film. His performance in The Night Manager is pretty smooth, as is the whole show. It’s like watching a film in one hour weekly installments. I am hoping that with the standard set by War & Peace, followed by The Night Manager will continue a run of excellent drama shown on the BBC. (Lord knows they don’t show much else!) Not only that, it’s got the superb Olivia ‘can-do-no-wrong’ Coleman as well as Tom Hollander playing a pretty epic baddie. If you haven’t seen it yet, hop on to the iPlayer and check it out. You will not be disappointed.

Not only have I been enjoying these, I have also been loving the latest (and possibly final) series of The Good Wife, Happy Valley on BBC, which is one of the best TV police dramas I have ever seen. Sarah Lancashire deserves every acting accolade for her performance in this as far as I’m concerned; Life and Death Row on BBC 3 has also been breathtaking. It’s a documentary series based on convicts on death row and explores how they got there. It’s pretty dark and disturbing, when you realise what humans are capable of, but it does also make you think about the justice system and whether it’s fit for purpose. Well worth a watch if true crime is your thing.

Tuesday Treat – Fresh flowers

Isn’t it great seeing spring flowers finally come into bloom? I’m sure I’ve been able to smell them in the air some mornings, which is a sure sign spring is about. Ever since our Christmas decorations were put away at the beginning of the year, I’ve continually had fresh flowers in the house. It wasn’t a conscious decision but every time one bunch went over, I bought a new one. Nothing expensive or fancy, trying to support local shops where possible and it has been lovely having fresh flowers, especially as our spring bulbs have only recently started to come into bloom.

Fresh flowers

The spring bulbs are finally coming up in the garden too. The crocuses have been about for a little while, but the daffodils have only bloomed in the last week. I’ve also noticed a few tulips and hyacinth are almost ready to burst into life. We didn’t have much colour in the garden over winter and I didn’t realise how much I would missed seeing their colour. We’ve resurrected a near dead orchid and it finally bloomed last week, which was amazing. Not only was I amazed that we hadn’t completely killed it, but that we were able to get it to bloom again. Bloomin’ marvellous! (*groan*) There’s something so lovely about having fresh flowers around, whether they’re in the garden or the home. They really brighten up my day.