Monday, July 29, 2013

DIY flower headband/crown

Now that flower crowns/headbands seem to have become a huge trend, I wanted to have a go at it myself. I was inspired by the flower headbands I purchased a while ago, and went on a little search to find the easiest and quickest way of making my own. It's really super simple and won't take more than 15 minutes.

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Thursday, July 25, 2013

Zara sale buys

As much I was looking forward to the Zara sale, I wasn't very impressed when it finally came around. Maybe it's because I left London before it started (London sales are the best!), or maybe I was just too late for the good items. Either way, I did get three items which I'm very happy with. Credits go to my sister and her good camera, thank you sis! 

I bought these cute paisley print shorts in Ljubljana. They are not silk but polyester, which might not make them as nice quality, but they are pretty much wrinkle-free. They are the perfect travel shorts: light, easy to combine and almost wrinkle-free. 

Next up is this tuxedo-style silk shirt. I love silk shirts and always buy one (or more) during the sales. This one is different than any of the shirts I own. Great with shorts or with jeans, day- or night time. 

Last but not least, a scarf I had my eye on for a while. I don't buy scarves very often, but I liked this one very much. I wear a lot of black during fall and winter, and this tiger print scarf is perfect to spice up those beloved all-black outfits. 

Did you get any good bargains during the sales?

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Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Recipe: Halloumi, pesto & avocado sandwiches

This was one of my favourite meals while I was interning in London. After a long day at work, I didn't want to prepare anything too complicated, so these halloumi-pesto-avocado sandwiches became my go-to meal. I love halloumi a lot so I don't think I'll get bored of these any time soon!
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Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Most Loved IV

I've been taking plenty of pictures for another most loved post. Summer is treating us well with hotter than hot temperatures and plenty of sun. I've been loving my summer so far, I hope you have too! Here's my most loved...

Drink: flavoured ice water
To stay hydrated (check out last year's tip!), I like to make my water a little more interesting. I add slices of lemon, mint and lots of ice cubes. It doesn't only look fresh, it also tasted good! You can also add pieces of watermelon, lime, berries, peaches or basil.

City: Venice
I can't believe almost a month has passed since I was in Venice. Every time I go there, I love it a little more. Every street, canal, building is picture-perfect which even made it hard to chose one picture for this post. I  Venice!



Cool-off moment: Italian lemon granita
As usual in summer, it was really hot in Venice. My solution? An ice cold lemon granita, yummy!

Exercise: NTC Core Crunch
Lately I've been doing some of the 'Get Focused' 15 min exercise routines on the Nike Training Club iPhone app. Some are more intense than others, like the core crunch. Damn, after the first time my abs were sore for two days! But now it gets easier every time. I think this app is perfect for quick intense work-outs. 


Recipe: almond and hazelnut butter 
When my dear friend Isabel - her blog - told me she made almond butter from scratch it sounded too easy not to try out. Just pop some raw or roasted whole almonds in the food processor and process for about 15 minutes - recipe here. I made almond butter and almond-hazelnut butter and I liked the second one best. I then went on to make these guilt-free oatmeal-date-chocolate bars. The perfect breakfast or snack substitute.



Celebration: a new King! 
On Sunday, my siblings and I headed over to Brussels to celebrate our new King Philippe. It  was one of the hottest days of the year but we got to see the whole Royal Family from up close and the impressive military defilé. A special day for us Belgians!


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Friday, July 19, 2013

I ♥ Summer

Here's a summary my summer so far on Instagram. I become happy by just looking at these photos so I hope you do too!

Beautiful flowers // fruit salad snack // my sister's Solero // my favourite brekkie, banana pancakes! // beautiful Venice (app used: A Beautiful Mess) // my favourite summer nail polish Essie Fiji // my favourite ice cream Raket/ Rocket // frozen Indian mango puree with frozen raspberries, refreshing! // a cute little hedgehog I met on the side of the road 

Follow me on Instagram; Athenadb
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Thursday, July 18, 2013

Bourjois Healthy Mix Serum vs. Healthy Mix Radiance Reveal

I've been using the Bourjois Healthy Mix Serum Gel Foundation for about 2 years now. Last week, I ran out again, so I went to the drugstore to get a new one. But when I saw that they didn't stock it, I brought home the sister product: Healthy Mix Radiance Reveal Foundation. With almost the same name and packaging, I was curious to find out the difference between these two foundations. Which one would I prefer better?
Healthy Mix Serum gel foundation - Healthy Mix Radiance Reveal foundation
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Wednesday, July 17, 2013

BBQ

With these hot temperatures, all I want to do is be outside with glasses of ice water, interrupted by a great BBQ. The BBQ lunch we had a few days ago was so delicious, I couldn't resist snapping some photos. If you're a vegetarian, you might want to skip this post...
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Monday, July 15, 2013

Wish list

I haven't made a wish list in a long time, but this week I've had some things on my mind...


White crochet shorts from H&M, €10: Normally I can find lots of good things in the H&M sale but this summer I'm a bit disappointed. These cute shorts are still available online, only too bad that there's no online shop for Belgium.. please H&M open up an online shop for us!

Sensationail, €70 : This is a do-it-at-home kit for gel nails which stays perfect for two weeks. I've seen this so many times in Boots in London, and after so reading many positive reviews I'd love to try this out! I've had similar manicures from another brand and I think it's ideal for girls like me who don't like to spend hours on their manicures but like to have pretty nails. 

Sandals from Alaïa, €280: Alaïa is one of my favourite designer brands. I always knew the clothes were incredible, but the past few years the shoes have been looking pretty great too. These sandals are so cool (click the link for more photos), but they are nearly sold out. Maybe a good DIY idea?

Light blue skater skirt from Zara, €40: I had a little peek at Zara's new collection while I was sale shopping and I saw this pretty skirt. It reminds me of an Alice in Wonderland-inspired skirt I once made for a school fashion show but this one is 100 times prettier! 

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Ljubljana, Slovenia

Two weeks have already passed since we made a little road trip through Italy and Slovenia. It was short but sweet. After two days in Venice, we managed to squeeze in a short visit to Ljubljana, the capital of Slovenia. I was sad to leave Venice so soon, but little did I know that Ljubljana would also steal my heart...
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Friday, July 12, 2013

3''' More Inches Life Extending Hair Care

I wrote about my Michael Van Clarke experience a while back and promised to review the 3''' More Inches range once I tested it for a few weeks. This range - consisting of a shampoo, conditioner and treatment - is specifically designed to slow down the aging process of hair, which is accelerated by heat styling, the sun and colouring. I've never come across a hair care range with this promise, so I was very curious and also determined to keep my hair supple and healthy after my lovely haircut at the salon. 
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Thursday, July 11, 2013

Sun protection

My number one beauty product in the summer is sunscreen. Some people might think that sunscreen will prevent getting a nice tan, but that's a common misunderstanding. Sunscreen will allow you to gradually get a nice tan which will stay for a few weeks, without burning. Even from getting a bad sunburn once you can get Melanoma. Check out this video, which always makes me think twice before exposing my skin to the sun. 

I have fair skin, but do get tanned in the summer (skin type 2). At the beginning of summer I'll always apply factor 30 to my body and SPF 50 on my face and other sensitive areas. By the time I'm tanned, I use Hawaiian Tropic oil (with SPF 20) on my legs, arms and stomach. 

This summer I got myself a few good sunscreen options. Boots always has great deals before the summer so most of these products were half price! I'm really happy with the Piz Buin 1 Day sunscreen because you can apply it in the morning and only re-apply once a day (it's good for 6 hours). I've used it a few times and it's non-sticky and non-oily and keeps me burn-free. The SPF 50 from Garnier is for my face and chest. The small Garnier On-The-Go tube is perfect to carry in my handbag and has been very useful already! Always apply aftersun, it will hydrate your skin and it will make your tan last much longer. 

Some more sunscreen tips:
- Don't use last year's sunscreen and always check the expiration date. The SPF will not be as effective!
- Always re-apply during the day and after swimming. You can never put on too much sun protection!
- Use the right SPF for your skin type. 
- Wear a hat and sunglasses to avoid burning your scalp and eyes
- You need 3 tablespoons of sunscreen for it to be effective. Not applying enough reduces the protection. 

I hope everyone's enjoying their holidays and tanning safely! 

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Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Summer read: Grace, A Memoir

When I got home from London, I found a few books on my desk with a note from my sister "books to read over the summer!" A pretty, orange book grabbed my attention first so I brought it with me on a lovely 5 hour train ride to Luxembourg. Grace, A Memoir, is the memoir of Grace Coddington, Creative Director at Vogue - although stylist is more appropriate according to her. Filled with anecdotes about models, photographers, designers and Vogue, this book is an easy, interesting and pleasant read. To my delight, the book is also filled with photographs, drawings and a whole chapter about Grace's cats. 

Just like Fashion Babylon, you find out some insiders info of the fashion world, but in a much more personal setting. Grace has been in the industry for about 50 years, and talks about the differences of the fashion world between then and now.
I was kind of surprised to find out that everyone at Vogue despises The Devil Wears Prada and the image it portrayed of the magazine. I'm sure that working with Anna Wintour mustn't all be smooth sailing, but after reading this book I have some newfound empathy for Anna. 

The writing style is so personal that Grace almost feels like an old friend. And after finding out that Grace and I have a mutual love for Azzedine Alaia, I felt even more connected to her. Overall, a great read, even for people who might not be into fashion, this book goes way beyond that! 

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Saturday, July 6, 2013

Real Techniques expert face brush

I've been using the Expert Face brush on a daily basis the past few months but never got round to writing about it, even though it's become an essential in my make-up collection. Real Techniques was created by Samantha Chapman, who is a make-up artist known for her and her sisters Pixiwoo channel on Youtube. Real Techniques consists of a few ranges of cruelty-free, affordable, high quality make-up brushes. 
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Friday, July 5, 2013

Stockholm

While I was in Sweden, we went to Stockholm 3 times, so I got to see quite a bit of this lovely city. Stockholm is spacious, clean, big and it's surrounded by lots of water and islands. It's unlike any other city I've ever seen. We took long walks through the city, but not without the occasional fika on the way. I'll take you with...
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Thursday, July 4, 2013

Stars and stripes

Today is the 4th of July, which means there's a massive celebration going on on the other side of the pond. So I thought there's no better day to wear my American flag shorts! I got them in winter, which is why i haven't been able to wear them. But now I finally can and I love them! 

Topshop shorts, similar here 

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DIY Shimmery bronzing oil

After trying my friend's Nuxe Huile Prodigieuse shimmering body oil, I was loving the glowing effect it created. During hot summer evenings all you want is for your arms and legs to look bronzed and glowy. So today I was feeling a little crafty and decided to make my own bronzing oil. It's really easy, you only need a few ingredients and you can make your own perfect bronzing oil. 
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Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Most loved III

Time for another posts with my favourite things from the past few weeks. I've already had a great start to my summer and I've done lots of things like travelling and taking driving lessons (but the latter definitely doesn't fall under the most loved category).  Here is my most loved...

Shop window: Louis Vuitton
When I walked past the Louis Vuitton store on Bond Street, I couldn't help but stand still and take a look at the cool gold dinosaurs in the shop windows. LV always has the most incredible shop windows, but I think these dinosaurs are extra cool. I mean, look at that T. Rex carrying the Speedy bag! 


City: Stockholm
I've lost my heart to Stockholm. Everyone is well-dressed, the streets are spotless, the buildings are big & impressive, the old town is cute and the ice lattes are perfect... I could go on and on but I'll write a post about this cool city this week. 

Hair accessory: Flower crown
I think flower crowns are the best accessories ever and I wish I'd have an excuse to make/wear them more often. So fairytale-like.

Clothing item: Wildfox I'd rather be shopping sweater
Perfectly warm, casual and cute at the same time. And for 50 pounds it was the perfect bargain. I feel like I've been wearing it all the time since I bought it. I can't find this exact one online, but my other favourite Wildfox sweaters on sale are this I love my cat one, , this shopping is my cardio one and this classic heart one. This meow! one is not one sale but is so perfect for me, I want it!

Fast food: Max (Sweden)
I'm not a big fan of fast food and I pretty much hate McDonalds, but Max managed to win me over. The burgers are freshly made and there's a big selection of sauces (and all you can eat ketchup). This fast food chain is even very environmentally conscious Very tasty!

Flower: Anemone 
Last year we only had blue anemones in the garden, so this year I planted some more colours (Martha Stewart would be proud). I bought red anemones at Columbia Road Flower market a few months ago, and I'm glad I finally have them again. So pretty!

TV Show: Revenge
Now that the producers from The Borgias announced that the show won't continue (sob!) I started watching another show: Revenge. Apparently season 2 isn't very good, but I'm loving season 1. I like the thriller aspect of it!
image source


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