search this blog

Sunday, 14 January 2018

Your Basic Kit for Modern Calligraphy

About 7 months ago (ok more like 15 months ago) I decided that I wanted to do Modern Calligraphy. Having always had an interest in art, pretty fonts and the infamous bubble writing that we all did when we were 14. However I dont think you have to be 'artistic' to do this. If you have the want to do it you'll be just fine!

Recently I have been doing little calligraphy challenges. For example in December I did Christmas Lyrics and it took me ages to decide and organise this as I decided to choose what I did each day. In January I’m currently following the #createinspirepositivity Challenge, and the creators have kindly decided what I do each day. 

I post these to my Instagram daily and a few of you have commented on how you would like to do this as a hobby too. I’ve decided to throw together the basics of what you will require to start calligraphy. 

First off you will need a penholder. There are two main types of penholder; the straight penholder (above) and the Oblique pen holder (below). The difference? When using a straight penholder you have to turn the paper you are using it on an angle. I believe this helps the flow of ink. The Oblique penholder is already at an angle so you do not need to turn the paper to angle. In honestly I find the Oblique penholder easier to use but I did use a straight penholder when I first started doing calligraphy. I would get both and see what you prefer. Quill London has a number of penholders ranging from £2 (ish) up to about £100. 

Nibs are next on your list. I am currently using the Leonardt Sterno 40 nib (is on the Straight Penholder) and the Gillott 303 nib (is on the Oblique penholder). The Leonardt has good flexibility and the Gillott is amazing for fine upward lines along with thick downwards strokes. Again you can get these from Quill London. 

I am funny with Ink, I absolutely love the Quill London Inks but Winsor and Newton do great inks too and this what I started off with. I got a set for Christmas in 2016, which had 8 inks, a penholder and nibs. However the nibs were the wrong kind (you can see the kit here). In modern Calligraphy you do needed pointed nibs. 

I also really struggled with paper when I first started out, everything bled - it was so annoying! I still play paper by ear. At the moment I buy Paperchase notebooks because the paper in their notebooks seems to work with the most inks. My brother kindly got me proper calligraphy paper for Christmas, which works a dream but can be quite expensive. 

If you don’t own a paintbrush go out and get a cheap one - a paint bush can be handy if you want to apply the ink to the nib, rather than dipping the nib into the ink. By painting on the ink you don’t get an over load of ink, which can splodge on to your paper. 

Things you will need from home:

Water to clean your nibs with, and to occasionally dilute the colour (dip the nib into the ink and then the water) a bit of tissue/kitchen roll (or if you're super lazy like me whatever piece of clothing you are wearing). You will also need a match or lighter - when the nibs arrive they have a waxy coating on to stop them from rusting. However the wax stops the ink flowing. Just light a match and run it over the nib and then wipe clean. 


I tend to work and understand things better if I am shown so I can see how people do things. So I decided to take an evening lesson (just one) to help me understand and confirm what I was doing was right. However if you have previously learnt things from YouTube I would 100% head there. 

Absolute necessaries 

You will need patience. I am going to sound like a Debbie downer here, but your first couple of things you try to create won't look like what you imagined. You will 100% think why doesn’t my 'g' look like so and so's on Instagram. This will come in time. I wouldn’t say this is a time consuming hobby as such but I do think you will have to be prepared to put the time in to practise and end up with work that you aren’t always happy with. 

If you would like to see more of this kind of content please let me know by commenting below or you can contact me on my socials just search @ohhsorosie on Instagram or Twitter. 

Saturday, 23 December 2017

The Body Shop Event

Last month I was kindly invited to a Body Shop Christmas event. Annoyingly I was a little late so missed the first part of the event, where The Body Shop chatted about some of the things they’ve acheived over the years. I wish I was there for that part!

However I did arrived in time to see the Christmas sets being spoken about, the body shops Christmas line this year is really fun and imagative. A lot of the boxes have games inside them and quizzes which I think is a fun twist on things.

We got time to look around the store and try the products out and the chance to smell some of the Christmas scents. Frosted plum was my favourite. There was also an amazing machine which prints out labels with your name one. 

Monday, 11 December 2017

Glossier review

I don’t normally tend to jump on the band wagon with products. Mainly because I don’t have enough money to be constantly buying new launches and secondly I don’t use things up quick enough and I hate throwing things out.
However, I needed a new cleanser and I thought if I had to pay postage on a £15.00 product I may as well buy a few things. In the end I went of the phase one kit which contained a milky jelly cleanser, priming moisturiser and a dot balm. Will Glossier live up to hype? Let’s find out.

Milky Jelly Cleanser

Out of the 3 products this is my least favourite. Although this product isn’t bad, I just don’t feel like it’s amazing. I find it quite difficult to remove. I personally prefer to use a flannel to remove cleansers and I found that using a flannel seems to take off the top layer of product. However splashing it off the face seems to dilute it, making this the best kind of way. 

You use 2-3 pumps if you’re using the product on dry skin, something which is a lot of product. If I used 3 pumps everyday the product would be gone within a month. Although it is only £15.00 I think using this much product would mean you’d get through it quite quickly, making it a fair expensive product.

However this cleanser does remove mascara, gel eyeliner and eye makeup extremely well. It just melts away so easily, something which is a rarity in products. In terms of how soft my skin felt after using this product, it was a little hit and miss my skin didn’t feel like it super clean, or really refreshed. Sometimes it can make my skin a little tight. 

Priming Moisturiser

Firstly I think this is confusing name for a product, but I do think it’s called priming moisturiser because you are prepping the skin ready for the day and makeup. But I would not say this is solely a makeup primer as in for example benefits porefessional . I love that this a buildable, I find that if you slap a load on the skin  it doesn’t work as well. Using a tiny  amount really refreshes the skin. My only niggle with this product is that the product design is a little poor. The products is quite runny so occasionally you use way more product than you need to. However after using this product for a few weeks you do get used to the design. This is normally £18.00.

Birthday Balm Dotcom

I chose the birthday dot com balm, mainly because of the packaging. The product itself is extremely good. It really helps to moisturise and hydrate your lips. This product can be used all over. However the birthday dot balm does glitter in, which when rubbing into my cuticles can make them look fabulous ( but I guess not everyone wants glitter culticles). I do think that this is a very good product, but I also think and know I wouldn’t pay £10.00 on this if I was buying on its own. 

Overall Glossier is a fun brand with great looking packaging. Out of the 3 products I got I would definitely buy the moisturiser again. As much as I love using the dot balm I can’t justify the price. Sadly the cleanser is a bit of a let down.

Sunday, 19 November 2017

Lush Christmas

So which lucky person got invited to two Lush events?! Me! The Crawley event was more focused on Chrsitmas whilst the Portsmouth one was slighly more focused and themed around Halloween - you can read that post here.  One thing which I loved about the Crawley event was that it was a lot smaller and it was with bloggers than I know and follow, so it made the event kind of more personal if that makes sense?

As I mentioned in the Portsmouth post Lush have released more naked products in the forms of shower gels and body lotions. We spent time listening to why Lush have done this. They also explained how the packaging of the product is the most expensive part. So by removing the packaging element they can use the money saved from the packaging in the actual product, which in theory means as the consumer we are getting more quality ingredients for our dolla. 

Bath bombs are a massive part of Lush along with bath bomb demos. We got to see a few of the new Christmas bath bombs in action. One of my favourites was the bath melt ‘Star Light Star Bright’ watching that melt away looked so pretty, as you can see from the picture.

I think the highlight of any event with lush is the chance to make one of the products. This time it Buche De Noel on the menu. This was kind of gross to make - but enjoyable none the less. A mandarin went in along with Cranberries and ground almonds when in. Brandy and glycerine also went in, this was then whizzed up and kind of looked like sick. Then kaolin was added along with fragrance, cocoa butter, and essential oils. When the bulk of ingredients were mixed together the product was wrapped in seaweed with some gold leaf for decoration. This product is great to buff and brighten the skin, whilst leaving it super soft thanks to the cocoa butter. 

At the end of the night I picked up a few bits and pieces from the store including the Bubbly shower gel, which smells so good, a top up of Ultrabland for winter and also Once Upon a Time Body Lotion because I was devastated that lush didn’t bring out the ‘so white’ bath bomb this year.

We were also extremely lucky to receive a goodie bag at the end of the night. Which included a naked Santa’s Christmas, Christmas Citrus, Ectoplasm Jelly Bomb, Man in the Moon Bubble Bar, a naked Once Upon a Time Body Lotion, Butter bear Wash card and our hand made fresh cleanser; Buche De Noel.

So far I’ve tried the Buche De Noel cleanser, which is amazing. It leaves the skin feeling very clean, soft and also looking glowy. I definitely now see the hype around this product. Unfortunately it doesn’t really remove makeup, as it has ground almonds in so it can’t really go near the eye area. But it is still a fab product. 

The Christmas Citrus soap is amazing, the smells reminds me of lime jelly. This product is packed full with citrus fruits as well as cocoa butter. I use this as hand soap, but so far I’m finding it quite moisturising. 

Santa’s Christmas Naked Shower Cream is an interesting one. I’ve tried to use it and I just don’t seem to get any lather, maybe I’m not spending enough time lathering, maybe it’s because this solid is a solid cream rather than solid gel, who knows? Also. The shower gels are quite chunky. And to lather is quite difficult unless you do a somewhat rude looking kind of action. The scent of this is like the Santa Baby Lip scrub, with fresh orange juice, black pepper oil, coffee infusion and aniseed oil. 

 I thoroughly enjoyed this event. Have you tried any of the new naked shower gels? If so what did you think of them? Also a huge thanks to lush for organising this event!