My Absolute Favourites Of 2015

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Alright, yeah, pipe down, this post should have gone live earlier.

I mean, it is twenty sixteen already and that. But it didn’t feel right to not upload it on a Friday because y’know Friday Faves have become a Hannah Gale staple.

This list is a bit of everything, a few fashion faves and beauty products I will never be without again. It’s full of favourite travels and accomplishments and memories that will forever be etched into my heart.

I’ve had a good year. A magnificent year, and really, I couldn’t have asked for a better 26th year on this earth. I am in a better place than my teenage self could have wished for, and in a place that would have made her beyond excited and proud, and to me, that’s all that matters.

I’m both terrified and hyperventilating over what 2016 will hold, because oh boy, does it have a lot to live up to.

So far it’s involved chocolate cookies and avocado, bacon and fried egg sandwiches and sofa snuggles with my baby loves and crime documentaries. So if this is it, if this is a good as it gets, then damn, I’ll be happy.

Anyway, without further rambling and chats from the heart, here’s my faves from 2015.

 

1. TREK AMERICA

Although this list isn’t in any order, my 12 days in Utah/Nevada/Arizona will forever be something I cherish. One of those opportunities that seems so surreal it’s like it never happened. Doing Trek completely detaches you from your life at home, you become a different person, you stop caring so much about the internet and FOMO and your job, and you start caring about hot showers and finding fun new American alcoholic beverages and getting sleep.

I made so many memories and friends on that trip, and I’m still so amazed that I was even invited.ย  It’s given me a real thirst to travel more of the States in 2016 and beyond and for that I am eternally grateful. (Read more about that trip here)

 

2. BENEFIT ROLLER LASH

I’m so late to this party that people are already loading into a car for a short road trip to McDonald’s for hash browns and sausage and egg McMuffins. But oh hunny, this mascara is just. Well, it’s just so blinkin’ perfect.

I’ve gone through about 12 mascaras this year and they’ve all been a bit meh, and then I tried this a few weeks ago and I’m done. It’s over. I have a favourite mascara. It’s taken my entire life for this to happen. (Shop here)

 

3. RIVER ISLAND KIMONO DRESS

You know when you just put on a dress, look in the mirror and think dayum, girl you slaying.

That’s what this dress did.

It was sold out in my size in the whole of London, but I managed to track down a black version to the Marble Arch store. When I went to pay, the cashier mentioned in passing that there was a khaki version upstairs on sale for half the price so I basically did a sick in my mouth with excitement, only to find there was only one left in a size smaller than I’d go for.

I gave it a whirl and whaddya know, it fit like a damn sassy glove. I teamed it with layered necklaces, a smokey eye, wavy hair and OTK boots for Christmas drinks with old uni pals and am now eagerly waiting for the other colours to enter the sale. (Shop here)

 

4. BYRON

Living in London made me take good food for granted. It’s everywhere. There are sexy burgers that make you feel fuzzy things all across your body basically on every street corner. But in Ipswich? Nada.

We had a Byron come to Suffolk this year and it was like THE BIGGEST MOST EXCITING NEWS EVER. I’m such an easily pleased country lass now can you tell?

Anyway, it’s a 45 minute drive but it’s become our favourite treat date spot. And now whenever we explore somewhere new we hunt out the nearest Byron because that mac n cheese <3<3<3

 

5. CUTTING MY HAIR

This autumn marked me cutting off my long Pinterest princess hair and going back to the mid-length I rocked a few years back when I was busy doing my thang as a sassy, single, career gal in London.

It was the hair cut I had when I met Chris, and I have a lot of good memories from that time, so getting rid of all the dry ends and thin, straggly bits and going back short had a heck load of good vibes for me.

I’ve had so many compliments on it recently because I’ve finally worked out how to style it kinda cute. So if you want a tutorial, I’ll hook a girl up.

 

6. MYKONOS

I took a three night trip to my fave Greek island with my best friend this September and it’s made the cut for a few reasons. Firstly, it felt pretty bladdy epic to be like, errrr shall we go on holiday next month? I’m by no means rolling in money, and booking this was cutting it very fine with emptying my bank account (lol to being a sensible grown-up), but it still made me feel fly af. It was also dreamy to go away just the two of us and drink wine and eat good food and completely chill.

It was my second time visiting Mykonos, and I seriously, seriously, think you need to add it to your list of places you’ll visit when you finally learn to start saving properly. (Read more about it here)

 

7. ONE POT PASTA

I wrote a recipe for this dish a little while back (here), but I wanted to give it a cheeky little name drop here because it’s seen me through at least two meals a week ever since.

Nutritious, filling and omg so yummy, I’m praying to the calorie gods that MyFitnessPal is kind to it so I can continue eating it in generous amounts for the rest of January.

 

8. PRETTY LITTLE LIARS

Gonna throw this out there and say that 2015 TV hasn’t been all that groundbreaking. I’ve struggled to find anything that does that thing where you’re literally so hooked that you cancel all plans and start to fester in your own pyjama sweat. But I picked up Pretty Little Liars at the beginning of the year, after abandoning it at season two whilst at uni, and I’m legit counting down the days till it returns later this month.

I don’t know how they’ve managed to combine 90210 with Broadchurch, but they have and it’s golden.

 

9. THE CATS

My babies. My angels. My heart.

Nearly losing Rudey this summer was without a doubt the hardest part of 2015. If you’re an animal person, you’ll feel me, and if you’re not, then you’ll see 2015 as a pretty bloody easy year for your girl.

But it hurt, and her recovery was hard, and I am so, so, so grateful we’re through it – her fur has completely grown back and her little amputated leg stump is so ridiculously fluffy and she seems happy and OK and sometimes I just look at her and want to cry and hug her (no-one let me have human babies, they’ll emotionally tip me over the edge).

Adding Granger has made our house feel full, and has pulled us together into a proper little family and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

 

10. URBAN DECAY

I’d never tried an Urban D prod until this year and so far, everything I’ve tried has been just superb. Like, OMG THIS IS CHANGING MY MAKE-UP AND TRANSFORMING ME INTO AN INSTAGRAM HOTTIE.

I’m obsessed with the Naked Flushed palette, the Naked Smoky palette, the eye shadow primer and the clear eye brow gel. So if there’s any Urban Decay products that you basically have chained to your person at any given moment, let a girl know.

 

11. ASOS RIDLEY JEANS

Petite jeans weren’t a problem until I was 18 and woah what do ya know, stopped weighing nine stone. Ever since then it’s been a constant battle to find anything that fits over my ahem, generous bum and thighs, shows a sexy slither of ankle, and also fits happily on my waist. And then I met the ASOS Ridley jeans.

I have them in one colour and have worn them about 17 days out of the 25 I’ve owned them. Those other days being for festive dresses and pyjamas days. They are life changing and pretty reasonable too. (Shop here)

 

12. OLYMPUS PEN

I’d been umm-ing and ahh-ing about buying the most Instagrammed camera of all time for months, but felt like it would be a waste of money when I already had a perfectly fine DSLR (albeit one that was cutely scuffed and full of Egyptian desert sand).

But then I took the plunge and woaaaaah boy, it’s transformed the quality of my blog imagery so much that I’m 92% sure it’s resulted in more campaigns and work for me. The investment was a no-brainer and I’d do it again in a heart beat. I also bought the 45mm lens for that background blur, whilst I use the standard lens for vlogging. It’s made me so much more confident about YouTube and I’ve noticed my subscribers increase more rapidly as a result. (Shop here)

 

13. NEW YORK

Chris had never been out of Europe before, so I leaped at the chance of taking part in the Aer Lingus blogger competition earlier this year – the winner won two pairs of return flights and some money towards accommodation.

It was (and here’s where I feel pretty smug), my 4th time to the city. It’s my love. It feels like home. That buzz. Oh my. Just thinking about it makes me want to book flights on a whim, like woah, whatcha gonna do.

Anyway, we had a ball. We went for a week and did all the classic tourist things and thank the sweet lords, he fell in love with the city as much as I did. Can we go back this year plz? (Read more here)

 

14. SERIAL

Despite a lack of gripping TV shows, we did have Serial. Oh sweet, tender, beautiful Serial. The podcast that made people, well, listen to podcasts.

We listened to the first episode on the flight back from Budapest in February and then the second one in the car on the way back from the airport and then the third one in bed that night.

I’ll be honest, the second series which started last month hasn’t gripped me as much as the first one – but if you haven’t already given the Adnan Syed case a little listen, I highly recommend downloading it to your phone via the Podcast app on your phone (I legit had no idea this was even a thing tbh.)

 

15. PUMP STREET BAKERY

We only discovered this sweet little Suffolk spot in November, but it’s quickly become our favourite breakfast spot of all time. We’ve decided to make it an annual tradition to visit on Christmas Eve morning, to kickstart our Christmas in the most delicious (and photographic) way possible.

The coffee is good, the cinnamon rolls are seriously hubba hubba, the eggs have beautiful golden yolks, and the pancakes so light and fluffy and all the heart eye emojis.

If you’re ever near Orford, I seriously suggest checking Pump Street Bakery out.

 

16. SWEATSHIRTS

My first little business venture outside of this blog, as an internet person.

I have LOVED and adored seeing your tweets and Instagram photos of you buying them and wearing them and slouching about in them. It makes my heart. I’m not quite sure where I want to take it in 2016. I have some new design ideas and want to keep expanding, but it’s been a massive eye opener and I realise now that there were a lot of questions that I should have asked. Questions that I had no idea even existed. But as with any business, it’s a massive learning curve, and I can’t wait to keep growing and expanding and creating content and products that you guys like. (Shop here)

 

So that’s 2015 in a nutshell. Thank you for supporting me, for making me cry happy tears, for making me feel held up during tough times, for making me LOL at my computer screen on completely lonely working-from-home days, and for keeping me sane.

I just hope that in 2016 I can continue to produce content that gives you all the feels and makes you feel less alone.

We got this ?

 

 

  • Jodie

    I love favourites post! TrekAmerica was one of my absolute favourites of the year too, along with Serial and podcasts ๐Ÿ™‚ do you have any other favourites?

    The kimono dress is just perfect ?

  • Hannah

    Yessssss great post. Really want some Ridley jeans now!

    http://www.ohjanuary.co.uk

  • Great round up! I have loved your blog this year and I can’t wait to see what you have in store this year!

    Happy New Year too you

    Aimee
    http://cappuccinointheclouds.co

  • I loooooove Urban Decay and really want to try Roller Lash too! x

    http://www.shayholly.co.uk

  • Looks like you have had a great year! Happy New Year!!

  • Jen

    Great picks! I have yet to try Roller Lash, but I am way smitten with BeneFit’s They’re Real mascara. And I would so love to visit Greece one day! Happy New Year! xo

    http://www.vibrantbeautyblog.com

  • Ahh I still need to get hold of the Olympus Pen, I think that needs to happen this year. I love the Urban Decay products too but still need to try the Benefit Roller Lash x

    http://www.wonkylauren.com

  • Loved reading this!

    I really want to get the Olympus Pen now ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • Love this blog post!! Happy new year Hannah.

    I too have been thinking of purchasing an olympus pen, it just won’t sit well in my bank balance.

    I’m also late to the roller lash party, still saving my advantage card points for this purchase,

    http://www.awomanconsumedbywanderlust.co.uk

  • Your hair has been rocking! Getting a haircut tomorrow and considering doing the same with mine, we’ll see how brave I end up being once I’m at the salon ;D Can’t wait to see what’s to come in 2016 !!

    Julia

    ExploresMore.com

  • Jenny

    Love this round up, seems to sum up your blog and I guess you as well perfectly! Happy New Year! The chocolate and snuggles and TV sounds very similar to my start of 2016 and I completely agree that if it stays this good that would be amazing!

    Freyas Fashion Chapter

  • Ciara

    Love it as always Hannah! I also loved your post about things to do during Christmas and NY. Could you write a post about how to relax and not feel bad about it? Like i constantly struggle with guilt when I’m not being productive and I would love to be able to chill out and not feel bad about it!!!

  • Harriet

    Love this post! Glad you’ve had such a great year ๐Ÿ™‚

    I love Urban Decay too, especially their lipstick, it’s quickly becoming my favourite lipstick brand!

  • Chloe marie

    I love favourites post!

  • Fab round up Hannah, you seriously rocked 2015! And you need to try UD’s NAKED Skin concealer, amaaaazzingggg

    Lauren x
    Britton Loves | Lifestyle Food Beauty

  • Wonderful positive post! You’ve done so much this year!

    http://www.ohsobecky.com

  • Lucy

    This is such a lovely roundup of your year, I would love to go to Mykonos, now checking your post about it! Glad you had such a good year.
    Lucy xoxo
    http://lucyannblog.blogspot.co.uk

  • Pingback: My Life Goals For 2016()

  • Love this post! Benefit Rollerlash has to be one of my favourite products of 2015, I just love how it makes my eyelashes look.
    Alicia x
    http://bambidreaming.blogspot.co.uk

  • Most definitely give the Urban Decay lip liners a try! They are so creamy and beautiful but also have wonderful staying power! So happy to have found your blog!!!

  • Alice

    Hello,
    this is my first ever comment on here so hi ๐Ÿ™‚

    just reading your post about pretty little liars and how 2015TV was very MEH – and i think you’ll love Reign – its on netflix ! its so addictive

    anyway enjoy ๐Ÿ™‚


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