My 21st birthday: the gifts and the buys

Following on from my previous blog post about my birthday, I promised a post dedicated to the gifts I was bought and the things I decided to spend my birthday cash on. As per, I was bombarded with lots of lovely presents that represent me to a T. Every year, I’m completely spoilt by my family and my closest friends (I don’t have many but those I do have are worth much more than people who don’t care whether they’re in your life or not). There’s never anything I dislike (but even if there was I wouldn’t even dream of saying it as I’ve been brought up to appreciate every little thing) as there’s so much kindness and thoughtfulness that everyone goes into when buying for me. I think most people now know I love everything vintage, beauty, fashion, and homely so when receiving gifts, these are what I almost always find under the prettily wrapped paper and that does me just fine!


This beautiful cup in a candle tea set was from my brother’s girlfriend and even though I’ve not known her that long, she certainly must have known my tastes as I adore this. It’s so delicately made and the candle smells gorgeous. It’s that kind of fine china that looks too precious to even touch but it’ll make the perfect ornament for my shelf… when I finally get my hand on some shelves that is.

These mixture of goodies were from my cousin and his partner (as a girl, his partner obviously did the buying as men are often clueless!). She said she thought the top gifts would come in handy for a nice relaxing bath; two bath fizzers, bubble bath and a strong scented candle, and they certainly will. The photo frame was a little extra and was open for me to choose which picture I’d like. I’ve not got round to choosing a proper one yet so I just printed out my favourite picture of me and my mum sat embracing the sunshine in Trafalgar Square. The frame is simple but adorable. I love how 3D like the small details look and the champagne glasses at the bottom just complete the design.

These lovely treasures are from my friend, Charlotte. Once again, she knows me well and has chosen appropriately. More candles, but I’m not complaining. Yankee Candles are always my preference and Vanilla Cupcake is delightful, it makes me want to find a vanilla cupcake with the exact same taste (but my will power to stick to my diet thankfully disagrees). This drinking flask with the cutest bird and floral design insulates both hot and cold drinks, so that will be handy to grab whenever I need it.

Surprisingly, the makeup items I received were from my 16 year old brother. Well, not actually from him as my mum got them, but still. The MUA highlighter and Topshop blush in Flush have been on my wishlist for a while now and as a bonus, they’re not too expensive so are affordable as a small gift. I’ve heard nothing but positive things about the highlighter and since using it, I completely agree; it gives such a healthy, subtle glow to the face. I haven’t used the blush yet (mainly because it looks too appealing to touch and I’m saving it for my holiday) but I’ll be sure to let you know when I have.

Ahh, shoes and clothes; my ultimate love. I’m getting to that age now where I can’t have any surprises in the fashion area as I need to check whether they suit me before I go ahead and give people the all clear to buy it. Luckily, I have a mum who has exactly the same taste as me, so she never hesitates when it comes to going shopping and browsing for ideal presents. Usually I do give her a push in the right direction, which I did for these when she asked me what I’d like for my birthday. I’ve been after a pair of silver holographic sandals for ages now. As I mentioned before, I have a new found love in chunky heels and have been grabbing as many as I can for my holiday to Spain on Saturday (eeek!). These are gorgeous, and comfortable, so I’ll be fine styling these up on my jollys. This beautiful kimono from New Look was a lucky buy, I’d had my eye on it for a while and kept checking the stock but suddenly, the sizes seemed to have disappeared. I panicked thinking I’d lost out on this gem but then a size 8 appeared so we whipped it up as fast as possible. I can pull off an 8 with a kimono as it’s soft and flowy and fortunately, it fits just right. I can’t wait to wear this both at home in the summer and abroad, it’s one of those items you can throw over a basic outfit to add that extra colour and pattern.

Known as the most common gift for a 21st birthday, my Auntie and Uncle gave me £21 which I thought was nice and traditional of them. However, there was an extra something from my little cousin. Wrapped up especially for me was this all glam wine glass with a handful of chocolates and a scented heart which will be a great addition to my collection of hanging accessories in my room.

P.S. The teddy in the first picture was also a gift from my wonderful friend, Ross. I’m always a sucker for a snuggly Me to You bear. 


FINALLY, I got my hands on a Naked Palette. As I’ve recently traveled to the world of eyeshadows, I knew exactly what I wanted to get with the £50 my Grandma gives me every birthday. The only problem was, I wasn’t sure which Naked Palette to go for. Debating over the 4 prized palettes in the Oxford Street Debenhams for around 20 minutes, I decided to go for the first one. My first thoughts were: Naked Basics would suit me perfectly for every day use but for when I want that extra glamour and choice, I won’t have anything to go to. Naked 2 was a very near joint first choice but I thought I would get more use out of the colours in 1. Naked 3 is the most recent hyped up product but as lovely as it looked, it was mostly pinky shades and they don’t do me any justice. So I went for the first and am loving it so far, I can’t wait to experiment more with mixing the colours when I have a reason to (i.e. my holiday next week!). The Origins Super Spot Remover was purchased just a few days ago with my remaining birthday money. It has been on my ‘I must purchase these supposed life changing skincare products once I have enough money’ list for so long now but I was quite surprised at the size of the bottle when I walked over to the Origins counter in Boots. I very nearly turned away and moved on as I didn’t fancy paying £14 for a tiny thing like that but I changed my mind last minute and honestly, I’m glad I did. I reckon a little will go a long way for this so it should (hopefully) last me a decent amount of time. My forehead is having a seriously angry breakout at the moment and I can’t seem to shift these pesky spots that are all grouped into one place so I started using this straight away. I only apply a small quantity to the surrounded area but it brings them right down so they’re barely noticeable. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that regular use of this will be helpful in erasing them completely!

As I celebrated my birthday in the UK’s biggest city, the prediction I’d spend most of my money as soon as I stepped foot onto the streets was spot on. Bershka was the first shop we entered, a shop I’ve never had the pleasure of being in before. For basics, it is amazing. I’d been wanting a pair of white trousers/leggings for a while and didn’t feel as though I wanted to splurge on a pair of Zara or Topshop trousers. Thankfully I discovered these (and a fair few others) in the entrance. After fumbling to the changing rooms with my hands full and standing there for a good ten minutes, taking my time to decide, I went with these beauties. I loved the cropped fit and the gold zips up the top gave that more elegant look. At £19.99, these were a bargain. I just wish I wasn’t so blooming clumsy as I wore them once and dirtied them right away. They’re now freshly clean ready for the next use!

The difference in lighting in my room is ridiculous, so I apologise for the appalling quality. However, these last three items were my final buys. The black laced halter neck top from H&M (purchased when I got back home and received another card with a generous £10 in!) and the white cami and flowered skirt from Forever 21 on Oxford Street. I don’t even think I can express my love for that three floored shop, I was wandering around picking most items up but resisted against my urge (which was a great breakthrough for me). I ended up just going for these summer items; a basic but pretty cami and a floral patterned skirt trimmed with my only weakness… lace! I now think it’s about time Yorkshire opened their very first Forever 21 store, it’d certainly be ideal.

So that’s that; I’m so happy with both what I bought and received. Now it’s just the trouble of finding a place for the stuff in my already overly cramped room!