Get A Hobby

Get A Hobby

Ever found yourself whiling away hours scrolling through Instagram when you could have been doing something (anything) more productive? I’m not denying anyone a good fall down a #NoFilter rabbit hole but your brain might thank you for a more creative pastime. These less than pedestrian hobbies might be just the tonic to reset your busy mind (and clip that phone screen time).

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The Oyster Club

The Oyster Club

What do you mean, you thought The Oyster Club was an oyster restaurant? Pfft. The original Oyster Club was a hangout for scientists, philosophers and other big thinkers of Edinburgh in the 1770s. The Birmingham namesake was established to create a haven for this city’s most brilliant minds, and also just for people that are well into their seafood. Or their caviar. Or lobster. Or Wagyu. Either way, complete with it's Michelin-starred creds, The Oyster Club's got the good stuff.

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Retail Revelry

Retail Revelry

Make a note in your Google calendar. Set an alarm. This Friday, the restos and retailers of Bullring & Grand Central are offering discounts, freebies and special event sort of things. And let's be real for a mome, who doesn't want all of that? Your bank manager would be proud. I'm proud too. Here's my pick of what's happening at A Shopping Affair, from 5pm 'til 8pm (when parking will also be half price).

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Out Of Towners

Out Of Towners

Ever so occasionally I’m accused of being city centre centric. Hey, the clue's in the name. Boutiques in Birmingham regularly get shout outs ‘cuz I’m basically a self-appointed B'ham indie cheerleader. But I’ve got nothing against the ‘burbs and there are gems to be found outside of B1 to B5, either a short drive away or a bit further afield. But all less than an hour from Grand Central. Pom-poms optional.

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Luxe Lighting (for less than £150)

Luxe Lighting (for less than £150)

There are so many types of lighting it can get kinda overwhelming. A pendant light, or a table lamp? Wall-mounted or cluster? Which do I want, and where? The answer is multiple options in each room for different situations. Most rooms have more than one purpose - the living room needs to be bright when you’re working on your laptop, but when you’re on hour three of a Netflix sesh, the lighting needs to be cosy. We've got the answers and, bonus, they're all under one fiddy. 

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Grand Designs IRL

Grand Designs IRL

I’ve just moved house and I can hardly bear living with a light fitting I didn’t choose. The thought of completely gutting a place before making it habitable again makes my head hurt. These local ladies have taken on projects that would make Kevin McCloud wince — and they've come out the other side. If you're crazy enough to want to follow in their tracks, we've picked their brains for valuable how-tos and the mistakes to avoid.

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The 4am Club

The 4am Club

How often are you frustrated by the amount of sleep you got the night before? Discussions on 11pm til 7am (as if), seem to be part of our daily lexicon, and if you're aiming to create a peaceful bedroom, it's about more than just blocking out external noise and getting black-out curtains. The experts at Neptune in Edgbaston Village gave us the DL on how a soothing environment might help you achieve those elusive eight hours.

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Affordable interior upgrades

Affordable interior upgrades

The average cost of repainting a two bedroom house is £2,000. That’s for the painting alone. Holy smokes. What to do if chez vous is looking a bit tired, but you don’t want to shell out that kind of cash? We got you. And we've got quick fixes to inject life into any interior and they don't require any serious commitment (or money), whether you're renting or home-owning.

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Notes on... Wreath-making at the Birmingham and Midland Institute

Notes on... Wreath-making at the Birmingham and Midland Institute

If you’re anything like us, you’re always pinning DIY projects to a Pinterest board that you'll never get round to doing. Christmas wreaths are firmly on that list. Every. Single. Year.  We have all the best intentions, but the reality is we do better with some encouragement (and a teeny bit of hand-holding) when venturing into uncharted, crafting waters.

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