My Goals for 2017

New Year is a great time to start afresh and reflect on what you can improve in your life. Here is what I will be focusing on in 2017.


Improve my blog

I pretty much promise myself every week that I’ll improve my blog. Personally, I think my ‘blog game’ has come on leaps and bounds since this time last year. For 2017, I want to post useful and insightful stuff, that’s visually appealing and interesting. I want to start mixing up different media, including video, as well as improving my photography. I also want to go self-hosted, get myself a nice layout, and really let Retro and Thrift come into its own.

Get better at my job

If you didn’t know already, I am currently I freelance copywriter and social media manager. After graduating in July 2016, I’ve learnt a hell of a lot from doing internships, volunteering and working for a local marketing agency. But, there’s so much more I want to learn and absorb. I really want to push myself to do read up on those things I’ve been putting off for a while. Of course, I love the creative aspect of my job but I always seem to shy away from the numbers, stats and analytics. This year, I’m going to force myself to learn the methods behind the madness of marketing!

Try new crafts

You may have already noticed from my blog content, but since graduating I have had a lot more time and money to get into crafts and DIYs. I even set up my own Etsy shop last month, selling festive pom pom garlands and baubles. There’s a long list of crafts I want to learn this year, so watch this space!

Pass my driving test

I’ve put off driving lessons since I was 17 but I finally took the plunge last November to start to learn to drive. Now that I am living in between places (that’s Hull, Lincoln and occasionally Hartlepool) I really crave the ability to drive! Let’s hope I’ll be passed by the time this year is over and then I can see my pals whenever I choose.

Move in with Aaron

This is another adult goal and one that I feel is, unfortunately, the least likely to materialise. It all depends on what we’re both doing, where we’re working and where we need to be. But, after another Christmas apart and only seeing each other for a couple of days a month, I think we’re really keen to get the ball rolling and finally move in together. It’s actually not that much of a big deal since we’ve lived together before in house shares and student halls.

Look after myself

After a few months of putting my own needs last, I think it’s finally about time I start looking after myself. 2017 is going to be the year I eat regularly, get decent exercise and put aside time and money for myself. I know that just doing simple things like getting a regular haircut and colour will make me feel a lot better in myself.

Incoherent thoughts for 2017

I think we can all agree that 2016 was rough. 

Personally, I guess this year has been pretty great for me. I graduated with a first class degree in History and landed myself a job doing what I love. I guess it would sound silly and perhaps a bit selfish to say that I still felt rubbish going into the new year. But I honestly sat on the sofa, watching the fireworks with a knot in my stomach. And it’s one that has been there for a while. 

I have a lot of anxiety about the future of the world, as well as a dismal outlook for my own future and I’m really not sure why. Is anyone else feeling like this? Is your 20s meant to be like this? 

Perhaps it’s down to digital media… 

Now, I love social media and the power it gives people to share and discuss their ideas. However, lately I have been taking a bit of a step-back (bar using it for work) because I really don’t think they’re helping the situation 

I guess that when it pops up on my news feed that my friends are all living with their partners, doing masters degrees, going travelling or just generally doing nice thins with their friends and family, I feel a bit left behind. 

It’s the same with the blogging world. I love to see what other bloggers are up to and I am so proud of my online friends for achieving so much. But there’s a little voice inside my head that nags at me, telling me that I am not good enough. I have all these ideas and dreams but none of them seem to be getting achieved or even started on at the moment.

In the meantime, all we hear about on Twitter and Facebook is doom and gloom for the future; terrorist attacks, shitty politicians and just other general bad stuff. 

For 2017 I’m hoping I’ll get out of this rut and have a more positive outlook. It’s true, I have a fantastic job incorporating many of the things I love. I have great friends and family. But at the moment I feel like my life is on pause. Let’s hope 2017 will allow me to press play on my life again. 

Congrats You’ve Made It To Adulthood.

If you didn’t know already, exactly a month ago I turned 21; the big two-one, the key to the door. I’m not quite sure what door that is all I know is that I currently have 2 front doors, neither of which properly work – but hey, they’re my doors and I work to pay rent for them.

Anyway, I thought I’d do a little bit of a birthday haul because I really love photographing pretty things and all the things I received were pretty. I don’t want to brag in anyway, just show you what lovely things my family and friends gifted me in exchange for me being alive for 21 years. I did receive a few more lovely bits than what is in the photos, but didn’t have a chance to capture them.

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The Last End of Year Ball

As I have shared my photos from my last two End of Year Balls, I thought it would only be right to write about my very last and final one. It seems so surreal that my three years of University is now over, and that many of my best friends (and my boyfriend) are now moving away from Hull to do different things and start a new chapter. I don’t know whether it was this feeling of ‘the end’ or the several rum and cokes I enjoyed, but this EOYB was definitely the best yet!


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4 Things I’ve Learnt in 4 Years of Blogging

Retro and Thrift is 4 today! Yes, four years ago today little 16 year old Courtney was sat at her laptop telling the world about her new makeup purchases – Lipcote and a Next eye shadow set. I still use and love Lipcote but I think (and damn well hope) we can all agree that my writing and photography skills have improved a lot since then?  Besides developing the obvious skills that coming with running a blog, I feel that it’s taught me a lot more – here are my top 5.

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Looking back at 2015

So 2015 was a funny one for me. Although when I was writing my notes for this post I realised I achieved a lot and was pretty happy at times, I’m still left feeling a bit ‘meh’ at the end of it. New Year gets me all anxious anyway; January has been a struggle since I can remember – grey days, deadlines and nothing much to look forward to. I didn’t want to do a chronological review of my year so I’ve put them into little categories.

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What I got for Christmas 2015

So I know this may be a bit late, but if you’re not sick of Christmas posts yet then please read my little post about what I was very lucky to receive this Christmas. I know these sorts of posts are controversial and often people accuse bloggers of bragging, however this is kind of a way to make the most out of the lovely things I received as well as thank those who treated me. 

First up is something that I’ve wanted for a long long time – GHDs! My parents gifted me these and I am in love – I’ll hopefully never have a bad hair day again and my mum also treated me these sparkly gold note books that I saw in Sainsbury’s. My friend gave me this gorgeous handbag from Floozie By Frost French – needless to say it’s my new Uni bag! 

 I am certainly turning into my mother’s daughter as I am a huge fan of candles and Yankees are one of my faves too. I love these lovely Christmassy smells that I think you could burn all year round.

 If you know me you’ll know I’m a sucker for false eyelashes. My parents (well my mum, lets be honest here), picked these gorgeous ones out for me from Urban Decay which are definitely being saved for a special occasion. I was also lucky enough for my friend to gift me Urban Decay After Dark Matte Revolution lipstick that matches the handbag perfectly!

More makeup from my lovely Nan – she treated me to a red lipstick and matching nail varnish – (thank you!). My parents also got me one of my favourite mascaras – Benefit They’re Real! Aaron treated me to a new Dot by Marc Jacobs – possibly my most used perfume of all time. He even got me EDP (I have him well trained)!

Some of the best Christmas presents are essentials – although eyelashes aren’t essential they just fitted in with the colour scheme of this photo – and I was so happy to get stocked up on shower gel again. I love Simple skincare, my mum always treats me to some because she knows it’s one of the only brands that don’t turn me into a tomato!

Here are some gifts I wasn’t expecting. Aaron’s Mum is absolutely love me and spoiled me rotten this Christmas – she bought me these super soft Nanshy brushes and a stand up holder for them all! Heated rollers are something I’ve never tried but these ones from Phil Smith are really quick and easy to use – I just have too much hair – thank you Mum and Dad!

Here are some other really cute bits I was gifted. The polka dot mug is from Cath Kidston and was from my lovely boyfriend Aaron; he also bought me 2 pairs of Boux Avenue PJs that have already been featured in a post I love them that much. Carrying on with the mug theme his Mum also got me this really cute (and accurate) cup that says ‘On a bad day there’s always lipstick’. The Kelloggs lip balms my parents bought me are so crazy – I am a bit disappointing they don’t taste of actual cereal though step up your game Kelloggs!

More PJs courtesy of my parents! Along with matching slippers and goodies from Burts Bees.

Last but by no means least my parents surprised me with this gorgeous Vivienne Westwood necklace – one I’ve been coveting for quite a few years now. I absolutely love pearls and slowly building a little collection of VW jewelry so receiving this was insane and made me want to cry. 

There are quite a few gifts that I’ve missed out of this post, I recieved a lot of foodie gifts that didn’t survive long after Christmas as well as vouchers and money that I obviously wont take photos off – please don’t take that the wrong way if you bought me something and it’s not here. It’ll simply be to do with the fact that things have got dispersed around my room when unpacking from being away. Thank you to everyone who treated me to these amazing gifts this Christmas. I hope everyone had a great holiday and are having a great start to the new year!
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