23 October 2015

Spectacular! Spectacular! | The Blog Awards Ireland 2015

Last night I attended The Blog Awards Ireland for the first time as a finalist. Last year I was shortlisted in the Beauty category, and I was thrilled when I was told that I had been nominated again in this years awards! I never imagined however,  that I would make it all the way to the finalist selection, so it was a pretty surreal feeling to be sitting in a room filled of some of the most talented bloggers in Ireland.

I am no stranger to the awards, my sister in law Siobhan has been a finalist for the past five years herself with her blog There's Always Light at the End of the Tunnel, winning three out of her five years. I suppose you could say she's a Blog Awards veteran at this stage. I attended one awards ceremony with her back in 2012 - the same year I started my beauty channel on Youtube, and I remember feeling so inspired by how supportive the blogging community was.

While I still enjoy creating content for my beauty channel, I feel that blogging allows me to be much more expressive and creative. I feel like I can utilise my blog for anything I want, be it a personal entry or a creative DIY - my blog has become an outlet for my passion of creative expression. Over the past few months it has slowly morphed from a companion blog to my channel into a lifestyle blog embodying all the things I love in one place.

What is a lifestyle blog I hear you say? A lifestyle blog is generally a blog containing content about life, hobbies, food, fashion, beauty - in essence a little bit of everything. It is essentially an online diary, a place where I can talk about random things and interact with you all about random topics of interest.

With all that said, let's get on to the topic at hand - namely The Blog Awards Ireland Speakeasy themed night that was held in the Tivoli Theatre in Dublin last night. No two blog awards have been the same as long as the awards have been run over the past few years. This has been due to a number of contributing factors from finances to sponsorship, but this year we were promised a blog awards to remember.

The awards night was themed 1920's Speakeasy meets Burlesque, and I can honestly say I had a task and a half trying to find an outfit for the night! Especially since we left our tickets until the very last minute to get! This was mainly due to the fact that I am less than two months post - surgery on my right foot, and still having varying degrees of good and bad days with my recovery. The past week as a result was a scramble to find something! I have gained so much weight because of my injury and being immobilised that none of my old dresses would fit me right, and I was feeling incredibly conscious about wearing anything too tight (that's another blog topic though).

After finally finding an outfit to wear, I started looking up various different hair styles I could try and do myself, and I settled for a very "Downton Abbey" style loose finger wave updo. 

I found this fantastic tutorial on Youtube and picked up some sparkly accessories to dress it up.

My husband Shane came along with me, and a very last minute addition to our little group was my Sister in Law Siobhán, who had also been nominated in the Youth Blog category. 

On arrival we were greeted by some gorgeous ladies dressed in Burlesque style outfits who handed us our wrist bands for the night containing food and drinks tokens as well as a glass of Prosecco each.

We made our way into the main hall which was decorated in a red and white Burlesque theme. There were benches lining the dance floor area (very 1920's Speakeasy) and feather boas strewn along the tables.

It was fantastic to see not just the effort that Ashville Media Group put into the theming of this night, but also the effort made by attendees to get dolled up. There were gangsters, molls, flappers, burlesque beauties and dapper gentleman everywhere you looked. It really was a fantastically themed throwback to the prohibition era. 

Food and drinks tokens on our wrist bands meant we didn't need to fumble around for money, we simply chose what we wanted to drink or eat and exchanged a token off our band. There was a fantastic selection of food which was absolutely delicious from Kinara Kitchen, Eathos and Home Fries. Myself and Shane had the Chicken Biryani dish from Kinara Kitchen which was so good, we did't give it any time for a picture.

Tasty lamb and chicken being cooked up by Kinara Kitchen
Drinks were sponsored by Bulmers Berry who offered a selection of Strawberry and Lime, Very Berry, Cloudy Lemon and Juicy Pear. One token got you a delicious pint of your choice. Dessert was literally to die for - provided by Glenisk I squealed when I read the choices which were not only delicious but cleverly named to fit in with the theme. 

With food and drinks options plentiful for the night, the awards ceremony was set to the backdrop of several fantastic Burlesque performances.

The awards themselves were hosted by Darragh Doyle and Claire Cullen (Clisare) who did a fantastic job of keeping us entertained. I particularly loved the best of the Internet "what not to do at a Blog Awards" compilation! Hilarious! Which reminds me, I really should get working on my Blog Awards nail tutorial! ;) 

The awards themselves were presented in two parts with my sister in law Siobhán's category being announced in the first half and to our delight she won her third Best Youth Blog award - so make sure you head over to There's Always Light at the End of the Tunnel and congratulate her. 

Well done Siobhan! Picture: The Blog Awards Ireland
My category "Best Lifestyle Blog" was announced in the second of half of the show. 

Although Makeup and Beauty by Amy did not win this year, I was so thrilled and excited to see my blog up there on the screen with so many talented people. 

Well done to Clare with the Hair and Ciara O' Doherty on their Silver and Bronze awards and of course to the lovely A Little Bird on her win - very well deserved, her blog is absolutely gorgeous! Of course a massive congratulations also to all finalists and winners!

As the awards came to a close we were treated to some final Burlesque performances (at which point I will just add that the Dublin Burlesque Festival will be held from the 19th to the 22nd of November - you can find out more details here), before the band began to set up which unfortunately we couldn't stay for. I did film a short little vlog of the night, but I'll admit we were enjoying it so much we kept forgetting to film! So I hope you enjoy the footage I did manage to get!

All in all we had a brilliant night! It really was a fantastic experience and nomination or not for me I'm really excited to see what will be in store next year! Thank you again to everyone involved in organising and of course thank you to you my readers for not only reading my blog, but also nominating me for this years awards - It really was an incredible experience and I wouldn't be doing any of this with out you. 

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Check out The Blog Awards Ireland Album from the night here

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