Inspired by…Catching Fire

One of the most talked about elements of The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, (once you’ve finished comparing it to the book of course!) is the amazing work the costume designers have done.  One of the most anticipated costumes, and one of the most iconic moments in the film, is Katniss’ white wedding dress, and the moment it burns to reveal something spectacular underneath…

For both of these looks, I’ve chosen to focus on the moment when Katniss twirls, and her dress is mid-change.  For the base of both outfits, I’ve chosen a short black and white ombre skirt to represent the flames eating the bottom of Katniss’ dress.  This isn’t a true representation, as both of Katniss’ dresses are long, but this is a much more workable length I think!

Although I’ve chosen to go in two different directions with the same skirt, I’ve also included a Cinna necklace in both, since “Cinna must be behind whatever is happening“.  The dress is a really bold, brave move by Cinna and I wanted to highlight his importance in a small way.


Look 1

For look one, I’ve stuck with the feminine vibe given off by the skirt.  A white top with lace details is vaguely reminiscent of Katniss’ ornate white wedding dress. A flying bird bracelet, although not a mockingjay, is a small nod to the moment Katniss spreads her wings.  A structured black blazer keeps the top of the outfit slim and flattering rather than overly voluminous.


Look 2

For this second look, I’ve gone with elements that remind me of a more glamorous (and less practical) take on Katniss’ arena outfits.  A simple white top with a zipped pocket looks almost practical, and almost like something Katniss could wear to training.  High heeled lace up boots are fierce and combine with the (faux) leather jacket to contrast against the feminine skirt.  Add the all important mockingjay in the form of a chunky bracelet, and you’re ready to go!


Which outfit do you prefer? Look 2 is definitely my favourite, because I love those boots and I can never resist a leather jacket!

Inspired by…The Hunger Games

I had intended to post an Inspired by…House Lannister post for today, following up on my Inspired by…House Stark post.  After watching the Hunger Games film this week though, I couldn’t resist focusing on Katniss’ reaping and interview outfits instead.

The Reaping

the reapingDress | Nail Varnish | Bow and arrow necklace | Mockingjay pin | Flats

On the day of The Reaping, when tributes for The Hunger Games are chosen, everyone wears their nicest clothes. For Katniss, from District 12, this doesn’t mean flashy jewellery but a simple, classy dress. This denim button-down dress, with nude flats, reflects Katniss’ simple style. A Mockingjay pin, like the one Katniss gives to Prim, and a bow and arrow necklace to hint at Katniss’ skill, tie the dress back into The Hunger Games theme.

The Girl on Fire

girl on fireNecklace | Earrings | Hair clips | Dress | Shoes

This second outfit is a great look for a night out, though the links to The Hunger Games are a bit more subtle.  A red, one shoulder dress is a bold but easy choice for a night out (and much more wearable than the floor length dress Katniss wears!). Black glitter shoes, fire-opal earrings and the phoenix necklace, hint back to the coal mining, and the referral to Katniss as ‘the girl on fire’. Bird hair clips for holding up an updo like Katniss’ are a discreet nod back to the Mockingjay.

Which look do you prefer? I love The Reaping look, but I’m more likely to wear The Girl on Fire look I think!

Hopefully my House Lannister post will make it up next Thursday, though I have to admit my mind is running a bit crazy with ideas at the moment!

Inspired by…House Stark

As Season 3 of Game of Thrones starts this weekend, I’ve had it on the brain a lot this week, and so I’ve decided to do a series of posts inspired by both the books and the show.  Over the next few weeks – and particularly this weekend – look for lots of Game of Thrones inspired happenings here on the blog!

Today, I’ll be focusing on fashion and accessories inspired by House Stark’s sigil and motto.  I’ve started with House Stark since so many people seem to be fans (though personally, I lean more towards the Lannisters myself).


stark jewellery

Winter is Coming necklace | Winter is coming bangle | Wolf necklace | Wolf earrings | Direwolf earrings | House Stark charm bracelet | Ghost pendant

The majority of the jewellery I found came from etsy, though I found a few ebay pieces as well.  I also had a lot of luck searching for just “wolf” earrings etc, as this brings you up a LOT of results, and can still serve as a nod to your favourite house.


stark clothingDirewolf t-shirt | Keep Calm and Be A Stark | Direwolf House stark | Winter is Coming (purple) | What would Arya do? | Direwolf hoodie | Winter is Coming | The Legend of Snow | Keep Calm for winter is coming | Hodor | House Stark | Winter is Coming bag

If you’re anything like me, you’re quite happy to show your geeky love for A Song of Ice and Fire with a slogan t-shirt and a pair of jeans. I found a whole bunch related to House Stark and it’s characters here, for a range of budgets. I also found a bag, which although not a t-shirt I couldn’t resist passing up.  I personally love the Winter is coming t-shirt with the howling wolf, and the “What would Arya do?” tee.

Phone cases

Arya Stark | Jon Snow | Bran Stark | Ned Stark | Catelyn Stark |Sansa Stark

Is it just me, or are these the most adorable iphone cases ever?! Oddly, I couldn’t find one for Robb (or Rickon, but that surprises me less), but here are the rest of the Stark family. My personal favourites are Arya and Jon, though I love the colours on Cat’s. I think I’ll personally treat myself to the Daenerys Targaryen one, though I might search for a tablet case instead, since the phone cases don’t have a front cover, and I’ve already smashed one iPhone front!

An outfit inspired by House Stark’s banner

Inspired by starks

Black cardigan | Shearling boots | House Stark charm braceletWolf necklace | Skater Dress

Here’s a casual outfit inspired by the House Stark banner from A Wiki of Ice and Fire.  The grey skater dress reflects one of the main Stark colours, and the cardigan and shearling boots give a nod to the freezing temperatures of Winterfell.  A House Stark charm bracelet and wolf necklace are a few final touches, making the outfit look inspired by rather than costume-y.  This is a casual look, that I would wear for a trip to the cinema with my other half, or a lunch out with the girls. I personally wouldn’t wear it to lectures because 99% of the time I’m too lazy to wear heels when I’m carrying books etc, but if you’re less lazy than me go for it!

Are you a loyal Stark? Which house or character would you like to see an Inspired by…post for?

Inspired by Parajunkee: Seeking originality

About 2 weeks ago, Rachel put up a post about originality.  The post got some backlash, but it also got an awful lot of support. If you haven’t read it yet, do check it out, but basically it talks about the fact that promo posts and cover reveals are starting to take over the book blogging world – making every blog look virtually the same.

I know, personally, that memes are taking over my blog a little, and planned to spend my Christmas holidays rethinking how to schedule my content better, keep on top of reviews etc (which is where I’ve been most of the month!). Rachel’s post then got me thinking about how to push it further – how to fill my blog with more original content.  Here’s a few ideas, if you’d like to branch out a bit too!

Step 1: Mind dump….

For the first bit, think about what you could, and would, write about, if it was just you who’d read it.  Maybe you started the blog for book reviews, but very few bloggers have the time to fill their blog with reviews alone – and unless you’re happy to have days without posts, it gets very easy to then fill days with memes and promo posts.  But what else could you fill it with?

The easiest way to think about it, is to have a complete brain dump, with everything that possibly appeals to you, and one of the easiest ways to do that is with a mind map (I used Text2Mind Map which was very straightforward).
Anita's brain dump
This is a mind map I drew for Anita, my example blogger (click to enlarge).  Anita is a fictional stay-at-home mother who blogs about cooking.  This took me less than 10 minutes to draw up and, as you can see, provides lots of foundation ideas for blog posts.  Firstly, write down your meme/link up ideas – if you want to include promo posts, cover reveals or excerpts etc, they should go here.  Then, make a section for the things you blog about currently – or things you could blog about that would fall into your current focus. For example Anita currently blogs just about recipes, but she could also include menu plans in that vein.

Then, if you need more content, think outside the box a little. Everyone has other hobbies – Anita has her family, and a love of stationery and budgeting.  Thinking about whatever it is that you’re passionate about – add a few more ideas for posts.  If you’re struggling with this section, think of things you maybe used to do that got dropped over time – reading fanfics, playing PC games, nail art – anything!

Step 2: Fit it all in!

So now you have plenty of ideas, you need to figure out what to cut, what to keep, and what to adapt.  First, decide which new ideas you could use weekly, if you wanted to.  Then slot those together with the memes/current features you definitely want to keep and see how everything fits.  Anita wasn’t that bothered about her memes, so she’s cut the Sunday haul to fortnightly, the Monday menu plan to once a month, and scrapped the rest for now.  If you like strict rules, then implement those: for example, Mondays, Wednesdays & Fridays, Anita has a strict recipe group to stick to. If you like more flexibility, then allow for that, such as Anita’s open “kid theme” Thursdays.
Anita's schedule

Step 3: Put it all to the test

Give it a go for a while; if your schedule doesn’t work – change it!  Remember as well, that you don’t have to post everyday.    If you only want to post twice a week, then plan for that. If you want to post 5 times one week and 6 the next, then go ahead!

If you love promo posts then go ahead and post them – but set yourself a limit.  If you decide you want to post one a week, then put them on a calendar or something when you sign up: no one wants to read promo posts seven days in a row.  Similarly, if you love memes but find yourself disappointed by the lack of content you end up posting as a result (this is definitely me), consider doing some every other week. Alternatively you could combine a few into one post to make things easier for readers who don’t like memes.

Book blogging can take over – review books take over, personal choices get forgotten about, and you can get caught up in the hype of certain books. If you’ve stopped reading your guilty pleasure genre, putting off your personal choices or giving up on other hobbies because you don’t have the time, this is a perfect time to re-evaluate! Find a way to bring those things in – after all, why not?

Above all else, remember that it is your blog. You might be nervous about venturing outside the comfortable book blogging features you have going on now, but your readers know you have other interests too, and bringing some of those interests in is an easy way to come up with new, original content.


Do you have any tips for originality in blogging? I’d love to hear more suggestions!

Feature & Follow (#14)

This Friday’s Feature & Follow question (hosted by Parajunkee’s View and Alison Can Read) is:

Q: What blog are you thankful for?

I’d find it impossible to pick just one, because I’m grateful for every blog that made me want to join in the conversation and create my own!  That being said, here are a few that I check all the time, especially when I need cheering up.

Philofaxy – Not book related at all, but filofax. I love seeing everyone’s set ups, and it makes me want to be more organised in general, which my uni grades are definitely thankful for!  This is probably the first blog that made me want to get involved in blogging, because it’s such a friendly community.

The Perpetual Page-Turner, The Busy Bibliophile & Parajunkee’s View – I can guarantee that one or the other of these will have a post to lift me out of my mood, whether because it makes me think, makes me laugh, or sends me on a crazy goodreads frenzy of adding to my TBR!

Skinnytaste, Eat Yourself Skinny & Sweetapolita – I love to cook and bake, but I don’t always have the time or creativity.  And I know it’s lazy – but some days after lectures, I just can’t be bothered.  These blogs keep me full of ideas for quick and delicious recipes for day to day, as well as fantastic sweet treats for weekends and special occasions.

Which blogs are you grateful for and why? Leave a comment and let me know, I love finding new blogs to read!