Thursday, 28 January 2016

My Record Collection and Set Up

I adore my vinyl collection. I've been collecting for almost a year and I'm just as in love now as I was when I first started. I have a very basic set up but at some point in the coming year, this set up will be super upgraded and expanded. I just wanted to share my love affair with records with you, maybe you might find this interesting!

My Set Up and Storage: 

Currently I'm using a Steepletone all in one turntable, which I picked up on sale when HMV on Grafton St was closing down for the second time... I know that it's not the greatest player but it's a starting point. I also have a giant pair of Phillips Over Ear headphones which have a 3m cable that allows me a certain amount of freedom while listening to my headphones with very little disturbance for the other people in my house. Funnily enough, my lovely boyfriend has the exact same set up in his house! 

About a week after I got my player I started looking for a specialised stand, something that would house my player and records easily. I tried every specialist record place I could get to, trawling in stores and online but to no avail - they were either not to be gotten hold of or outrageously priced if they were available. Sadface. So after putting my thinking cap on, to house my player and records I got THIS little cube from Argos. It cost me around the €20 mark and it's the perfect height for records to stand in, since the proper way to store records is on their end vertically so they don't warp. It comes with a back for it but I almost took my finger off trying to nail it on, so I left it off. My player and records all fit this dinky little cube and it's just so handy for anyone who collects vinyl. 

I also have a specialist vinyl cleaning cloth that I use to dust off my records before I put the tone arm down. I picked that up in KNB Music, a local musical instrument and supply place for under a tenner. 

My Record Collection: 

This might be a long list but here we go! 

Excenteric - Unconventional Behaviour. This is Prog House/Techno EP I got in Cork
Journeys By DJ - For The Pleasure. Another EP, this one is more Techno, also from Cork.
Kelis - Get Along With You. This is a compilation record but it's mostly D'n'B, it's very upbeat!
Greenskeeper - Live In Me EP. House music yet again. I know, I'm surprising myself.
The Darkness - Last Of Our Kind. Glorious glorious rock'n'roll!! 
Lorde - Pure Heroine. One of my favorite albums of all time, flawless. 
Taylor Swift - 1989. A double gatefold of joy. Love me some T-Swizzle! 
Hozier - Hozier. Another double gatefold. Another perfect record. 
Asia - Dont Cry. This is a single that Dex picked up for me in Norwich. It's a funny shape, but it plays at 45rpm perfectly and it was a lovely gesture.
Mumford and Sons - Wilder Mind. This album splits the crowd but I absolutely adore it. This is my favorite M&S record of all. Audiophile Porn!!! 
Ex Machina - OST. I adored Ex Machina, it's a beautiful movie and the OST is just as wonderful.
Mumford and Sons - Babel. Perfection. 
The Stone Roses - Second Coming. This was the first record I bought for my player. I adore it. 
Young Guns II - OST by Bon Jovi. Self explanatory really. A second hand find from a small seller in Blackrock.
Billy Idol - Charmed Life. When I put this on, I'm 16 again, the early days of my rock love affair. 
Music Inspired by Lord Of The Rings. Beautiful background music. Vintage store finds, huzzah!
Jeff Waynes - War of The Worlds. I bought this off a guy I know and it's still in mint condition despite being pressed in 1978. . 
The Darkness - Permission to Land. This is a picture disc of the first rock album I ever bought. Yum. 
Mumford and Sons - Sigh No More. Told you!!
Woven Skull - Lair of The Glowing Bantling. I managed to get this record (in Cork) off the guy who produced it. I talked him into selling me it well before its release, so my copy is the first one ever sold. I also bought it completely on a whim having never heard of the band or anything, and it's one of the best record purchases I've ever made. You should check these guys out. 
No Doubt - Tragic Kingdom. Okay so I bought a lot of records in Cork. Not sorry. Great record. 
Placebo - Without You I'm Nothing. We all need some melancholy from time to time. YAS!
NOW Thats What I Call Music. This is the original. Therefore it's the best of 80's pop! 
Imagine Dragons - Night Visions. Another flawless record. 

So there you have it, my record set up, collection, storage and anything else you might want to know. I love vinyl and find the process of digging through record stores and record fairs incredibly relaxing. I love the sense of camaraderie that you get from other audiophiles, the little not when you start flipping through the crates next to someone at a fair. Record collectors know when you lay that record out flat on the top of the stack you've just flipped through, it's yours now - you're going to buy that. That's nice. I like that.  

If you're a record collector, let me know your recommendations. 


Monday, 25 January 2016

Whats In My Travel Make-Up Bag?

I travel a lot, and I've made a promise to myself to travel even more abroad, so I'm curating my travel make-up to get me through both short trips and trips overseas. From Dublin to The Dam, this is what I carry with me when I'm on the hoof! 

The make-up bag I carry with me was a gift from a friend in the USA and it's a blue floral Modella brand pouch with a sturdy handle. It fits everything and then some! It also has little holders for mascara, liner, etc, like pen holders almost! Handy as, I think you'll agree. 

Face Base

To prime my skin I always use Benefit Porefessional Primer. I love the Benefit brand, and this baby primer is perfect for taking on the go since it's so tiny! To get a flawless base I go for the Rimmel True Match Foundation. Everyone should try this foundation, I'm really impressed with it, it's great coverage and it's under a tenner. I don't think it rivals my Estee Lauder but it's a worthy adversary for travel. To set my t-zone, I take Essence Pressed Powder on a big fluffy brush. I've been using this powder since I started blogging and I'm still as in love with it now as I was then. It's cheap and cheerful, it's not cakey and there's a whole host of shades for all skin tones - including my snow white self. Now comes the time to break out my Isa Dora Color Correcting Concealer*. 

Travelling makeup should do the job well, and it should be built to travel - to me this means the more cream products the better. Liquids could burst, and that would be disastrous. This is a four-pan wheel with all the shades you could ever want, including the most beautiful pearl highlight. To contour I always take my Isa Dora Face Sculptor*. Another multi-pan, compact product. Even when I'm at home, at my vanity, this is a well loved product. My shade is Warm Peach and it's perfect, from contour to highlight and the blush is beautiful 
and buildable without caking. 

Eyes and Brows

Urban Decay Naked Basics. This palette is the travel companion of my life!! I bring this with me any time I go away, whether its a weekend with Dex or a trip down the country or overseas, this little 6 pan love affair is the best thing ever. I use Faint, the second deepest shade on my brows and set it with the W7 Style Eyes* clear gel. The other shades I use to create a lovely neutral smokey eye which is the handiest for travelling. For liquid liner I generally stick with my trusty Rimmel Glam Eyes Black liquid liner which has a brush applicator and makes for the quickest, most precise application you could want! When it comes to mascara, I travel with something cheap and cheerful, if you couldn't tell. I picked up this Catrice Better Than False Lashes mascara the last time I stayed away from home and I had forgotten my trusty Roller Lash and, well, I'm converted. When your boyfriend notices your lashes, you know you're on to a good product!

Lip Service

It wouldn't be a Red Lips; Red Hair beauty post without some lip products. If I'm travelling, I want the standard stuff for the face but I'll happily take more lippy than is strictly necessary. I'll take a couple of nudes, a deep vampy shade and a classic red - well I am Red Lips, Red Hair after all!! 
L-R Urban Decay Shame, RimmelXKate 01,
Pantone, RimmelX Kate Nude 45

Currently, my lip colour picks are: 

RimmelXKate Nude 45 - a neutral pink toned nude, perfect for day time wear.
Pantone Universe 18-1438 - a deeper brown pink for sultry day looks
RimmelXKate 01 - possibly my all time favorite red (yes, I said it)
Urban Decay Revolution Lipstick in Shame - deep black purple with red tones. 

So there you have it, my travel make-up - minus the brushes, hopefully I can walk you through my travel brushes in a later post! The products in my travel kit don't change very often, save for the lipstick.

So what are your travel makeup essentials?

As you can see from the asterisks, there are products mentioned in this post that were sent to me for consideration. I only talk about products I use, abuse and adore. 

Saturday, 23 January 2016

25 Questions About... Red Lips; Red Hair!

Good morning all! I was thinking about the redisgn of my blog, and I decided that the best thing to do with that would be to do a few tags over the coming weeks for my readers to get to know me. I believe that the best thing about bloggers are that you can get to know them in a way that is far superior to any other media. So here we go, 25 Random Questions About RL;RH!

Image: The Go Agency USA

1. What is your middle name?
Catherine. Technically I go by my full name wherever possible, so Amy-Catherine. My dad calls me by my full title, and I prefer it that way. Only a select few are allowed to call me by my nickname Aims, and I've been known to tell people they can't use it to address me. I'd rather my full name in those situations.

2. Share you favorite subject in high school.
English and Art History. I was a bit of a creative nerd - sneaking into the Art room on lunch breaks, getting special permission to paint during free classes, having essays pulled for their content, I was the token emo kid by a country mile!

3. What is your Favorite drink?
Alcoholic? Gin and Tonic, Guinness or a good spicy Bloody Mary. Regular? Smooth orange juice. G'way with your bits, gimme smooth juice, ice cold!

4. What is your favorite song at the moment?
I mean, I guess it would have to be What Do You Mean? By Justin Beiber, but of all time, my favorite song is Venus Doom by HIM.

5. What would you (or have you) name your children?
I haven't a clue. I have no plans for small screaming sticky humans in the near or distant future.

6. Have you  participated in any sports?
I used to be a pretty decent shot with a bow and arrow. I've plenty of medals around, including national ones. I used to be a competitive runner too, went to the gym 5 days a week and was involved in Zumba. Archery impacted my life so positively, even though I don't shoot anymore, I'm proud to have my arrow tattoo.

7. What is your favorite book?
I could say The Harry Potters, but I actually have a real answer: Chase Your Shadow, by John Carlin. It's about Oscar Pistorious and its INSANELY good. It's a factual book about the trials and his life, and it's worth a read. I picked up my copy in Vibes and Scribes in Cork for under a tenner and I tore through it! Also worth a read is Angelas Ashes. All the women in my family read it and we all got something different from it!

8. What is your favorite color?
Orange, then black. All of my archery equipment was orange glittery with white, and I'm just forever a goth kid in my heart and soul. I also like a bit of blue, because it goes with my hair and colouring.

9. What is your favorite animal?
Pussy Cats!

10. What is your favorite perfume?
Prada Candy Original, it's my signature scent!

11. What is your favorite holiday?
I like Valentines, I guess. Christmas and Halloween can go and die in a hole.

12. On a scale from 1 – 10, rate your childhood.
5? I had an average childhood, outdoorsy, generally alright.

13. Have you been out of the country?
Portugal when I was 14, Wales a bunch of times, and Nottingham most recently.

14. Do you speak any different languages?
I have phrases in a lot of languages but I can hold a very basic conversation in German.

15. Do you have any siblings?
Three older sisters, 13, 15 and 16 years older respectively.

16. What is your favorite store?
Penneys!!! I also like Plug'd down in Cork.

17. What is your favorite restaurant?
Anywhere with a good burrito, Boojum, Tolteca, Little Ass, Pablo Picante. I also adore Yamamori and Kimchee. I like foreign food, particularly Oriental and I like spicy food.

18. Did you like school?
I'd go back if I could. It really was a grand place, it just felt like hell cause of my depression and anxiety. But, I liked being able to hide in the Art Room and skip Economics to hang out in the Woodwork room.

19. Who are some of your favorite YouTubers?
Nibbles, Carrie Hope Fletcher, Lindsey Hughes, my friend Kayliegh (get on that dear, miss you!), the list is long!

20. What is your favorite movie?
Dirty Dancing, that's my all time favorite. Closely seconded by Michael Collins, Singing in the Rain and the original Clash of The Titans! As you can probably tell, I like the classics.

21. What are some of your favorite tv shows?
Pretty Little Liars, Gilmore Girls, One Tree Hill, Prison Break, Downton Abbey, Secret Diary of a Call Girl, this list could go on and on!

22. PC or mac?
PC. When your boyfriend is a computer programmer java nerd you become swayed to the cause.

23. What phone do you have?
The Elephone S2 Plus 5.5. I had it imported from Hong Kong. It's a great phone!

24. How tall are you?
5'6" ish. I like to wear platform shoes and heels but I'm still shorter than himself and he's 6'2"

25. Do you have any pets?
4 cats, 3 women and a tom cat names Paolo :)

So there you have it, 25 Questions to get to know me. I tag everyone to do this! 

Wednesday, 20 January 2016

Things They Dont Tell You About: Being Sick

Last week I was bedridden in my lovely boyfriends house for two days before I was able to cobble together the strength to get home and see a doctor about what was wrong. I was really weak, shaking, coughing un-controllably and had no appetite. Sounds like the flu, right? Wrong! I was the proud owner of a viral infection in my lungs that, had I left my sickness another day would have hospitalised me. Aren't I so lucky?! 

Over the week I learned some things about being sick and how to pass the time when you're not even allowed to go beyond your front door. 

1. You Can Be Productive! 

Doctors orders were to stay in bed, preferably, but not to leave the house, to take my tablets, under no circumstances get cold and just be a good patient, but I get bored and I need to be doing things, so I redesigned my blog, wrote some Mochas and Benny notes and tried to keep my head focused on doing things that would make me feel like I had done things of consequence. Just cause you're sick, my dear, doesn't mean you can't find a way to be useful even if it's just for yourself. 

2. You Are Sick, You're Allowed Be Sick. 

I needed a shower, I felt wretched but I needed a shower. I needed to do something that would perk me up physically and mentally, and I deemed a shower to be just the task! Ohhhh how wrong I was. 10 minutes in the shower, and 10 minutes getting dried and into clean jammies meant I had to sit down three times to regain my strength. Well, who knew I had an infection in my lungs and breathing is pretty important to any physical task. I ask ya!!! 

3. It's Gonna Bleed Into Your Life

On day 5, I broke out of the house to attend a pantomime. My first ever pantomime. I knew a ticket had been bought for me and I had promised my boyfriends brother that I would go and see him play the hero - Prince Valiant! So I had another ill-fated shower, I got my grown up "well people" clothes on, wrapped up and told everyone to screw off while I went to the panto. It was fabulous fun- except I had to bring my tablets, Broncho Stop pastilles, jellies to suck on and a drink so I didn't expel a lung when I inevitably coughed during the pivotal scene! 

4. Work Wont Miss You

This is the one I struggled with the most. I work in a busy bakery and my job is important to me, my cake fridges are important to me and I need to be working. I just need to be. So when I rang in sick the first day, I felt like crap in every regard and I was upset that I was letting other people down, When I rang the second day, my boyfriend offered to do it but I just texted work and told them I was very simply unable to be a human and that I was going to see my GP. The GP gave me a cert, made me take time off and I had to get on with the task of being sick. Turns out - work didn't even miss me, despite my bleary texts to management apologizing for leaving the boys in the turd. You can be sick, your work will understand - so stop worrying about it! 

5. Netflix is Bae! 

I watched plenty of absolute drivel over the course of 4 solid days in bed - GBF tops the list of crap though, it was a fun mindless watch. I also wasted a few brain cells on Eat, Pray, Love, though I admit I fell asleep before there was any praying or loving done!! What I found on Day 2 was Downton had new episodes and I loooooove Downton Abbey to death so I got to catch up and now I'm only one season behind, so if I hadn't been in bed sick, that wouldn't have happened. I also got to watch a lot of old movies I downloaded and rewatch The Gilmore Girls for about the 10,000th time! 

So there you have it, things you should know about being sick. I wont bore you with the details of my sickness beyond the fact that it was crap and all I have to show for it is a lovely new blog design and this blog post!! 

Xo, Amy

Wednesday, 13 January 2016

Music Lover TAG

Photo: Me! Took this in Dundalk last March! 
1. Which bands/artist do you have the most albums by?
HIM, my Love Metal obsession is strong and has been for close to a decade. 

2. What was the last song you listened to?
Sorry by Justin Bieber. It's so catchy I'm not even sorry!! 

3. What was the last concert you attended?
I flew to Nottingham to see HIM just after Christmas with my lovely friend and fellow blogger Aoife, and my fabulous boyfriend. 

4. What's the most musically involved you've ever been?
Cant play anything, cant really sing, generally speaking I just appreciate the music. 

5. Who is one band/artist you've never seen live but always wanted to?
Off the top of my head, Hozier. That man reaches the depths of my soul and makes my heart happy. 

6. What is your favorite band shirt?
I'm going to do everyones head in but my your shirt and hoody from the HIM gig are my pride and joy, I would have bought three of each if I had the room in my bag!! 

7. What musician would you like to hang out with for a day?
Justin Hawkins. That man is a pure, 100% grade A rockstar. Saw him live last year and he was everything I thought he would be and so much more. He's also a complete gentleman and completely made my birthday. 

8. Who is one musician or group you wish would make a comeback?

Does anyone remember A1? They were the epitome of cheesy 90's boyband pop and 10 year old me was straight up obsessed with Ben Adams - I've always had a thing for the frontman!!
Ville Valo Credit: google image search

9. Name four or more flawless albums.
"Venus Doom" - HIM
Wilder Mind" - Mumford and Sons
Hozier - Hozier
"Night Visions" -Imagine Dragons
"Last of our Kind" The Darkness 

10. How many music related videos/DVDs do you own?
Quite a few, actually, I like to have a well rounded collection! 

11. What is your favorite music soundtrack?
My favorite OST of all is Gatstby. That record is pure gold. I adore it. 

12. What was your last musical phase before you wisened up?
Emo. It stuck to a certain degree, but it also helped to widen my tastes all across the board. 

13. What's you're "guilty pleasure" that you hate to admit to liking?
Don't laugh, everyone, but Gospel music and Country. I just adore it so. 

So theres one of quite a few TAG posts that I'll be doing this week while I'm stuck in bed with a respiratory infection... I tag whomever would like to do this, it's a silly bit of fun!


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