Sunday, May 17, 2015

OwlCrate Bookish Subscription Box -- Review of April's "All The Feels" Box

Okay, this has absolutely nothing to do with nail polish or beauty or anything like that. But it does have to do with my other true love in life, books. I pretty much read anything and everything I can get my hands on. I'm the kind of book nerd that needs a pile of books near me at all times or I have anxiety issues. I sleep with books in my bed. I'm weird like that. I also write (so far about 1-1/2 novels but that's a whole other blog post!). I considered doing a separate book blog/YouTube thing but whoa, lotsa work. Not that I'm opposed to work but I'm in a vortex of life choices right now. Too many roads. You know what I mean. But I digress.

Anyway, a short while ago I watched a YouTube unboxing video by BookNerd (I seriously love her! Go check out her blog & YouTube channel!) for this new book subscription box -- and I was like, WHAT?! MUST HAVE! March was the very first box and they were sold out for April. Noooo! I had to learn more! So began the adventure. Luckily, OwlCrate was able to offer up 20 more boxes for April right before shipping and even though the site crashed when they opened up those spots for a single minute (& let in about 200 subscriptions *oops!*), I was one of the lucky ones to get an April box. Yay!

What the heck is an OwlCrate?? Well, it's a subscription box for book lovers who like books and bookish bits. It was started back in March of this year by Korrina & Robert -- the most adorable couple EVER! -- in Vancouver, Canada. It kind of exploded in popularity and even though there has only been 2 boxes so far (March & April) they sell out *instantly* and the waitlist is full of impatient and excited book lovers from around the world. I am over-the-moon happy for Korrina & Robert because... well... they are cool & I'm all for Canadian small businesses. Plus it's a cool concept and since I've received a box I'm SUPER impressed by the care that has gone into these boxes. It's not just some crap thrown in a box, you can tell they took time to consider it and make it special. Even the box design itself is awesome! So yeah, go OwlCrate! :p

So it's a box with a book in it?? Yep. Each month has a theme. March was "Fantasy". April was "All The Feels". May is "Parallel Worlds". June is "Diversity". The book (& the bits) all relate to the theme. The book is usually YA but can sometimes be a more mature one (they let you know beforehand. The books are always published in the last 45 days so it's unlikely you've already read it (unless you're a super keener). It's not just a book though, there are other goodies!

Money, honey! How much is an OwlCrate? Well, that depends on where you live. The box itself is $29.99US at the moment. Shipping costs depend on where you live (they ship worldwide). I know people LOVE to bitch about shipping costs but come on people, we all know shipping isn't free and considering these guys are working out of their apartment it's not like they have a corporate account with FedEx. Shipping is expensive. And if they are losing money then what's the point, right? Do you work for free? Nope, didn't think so. Plus, they are likely losing money from the shipping costs, not making money. Give them a break! Anyway, I don't mind paying the shipping. It is what it is.
They do offer a discounted subscription price if you opt for prepaying 3 or 6 months at a time. All subscription offers renew whether you are doing month-to-month, 3-or-6-month plans. Billing is on the 1st of each month. You can also skip a month (but why would you want to?!). All told, I am in Canada and with present box cost, shipping, and US/Canada currency exchange it's about $52 a month. Pricey but honestly, I love the box so much, it's worth it to me. Plus, being Canadian, I like that my money is going to small local business. I also like that the bookish bits in the box are sourced from indie makers. I'm starting to pay attention to where my money goes and who ends up getting it. I want less of it going to large corporations and more of it staying local and going to small business, local artisans and crafty & creative people. It's becoming increasingly important to me.

Ok. So what's IN the box besides a book?? Well, since I only received one box so far (the April box), I can show you everything from the box to the book but I'll put it behind a link. I hate spoilers. I know everyone has their box already for April but still, one of those things. Plus, this is kinda long (& picture-heavy) so yeah....

Ruby Wing - Strawberry Shortcake

Holographic solar colour-changing gold glitter scented polish -- what?! Yep. :)

Even though the Queen's birthday isn't until the 24th, Canada decided to celebrate it on the 18th this year so I decided to bling out my nails because... well... the Queen... ALL Queens... <3 <3

This mani is making me think that I might have THE perfect idea for a daily mani challenge in June: 30 Days of Glitter! I definitely have more than enough glitter polishes to cover 30 days. Hmm...

Back to "Strawberry Shortcake" (yeah, she's scented!). Strangely, this is an untried from my stash. It always seemed like TOO much but today it seems too perfect so out it came. And honestly, now I want ALL THE RUBY WINGS!

Read on to see why you will too!

Thursday, May 14, 2015

China Glaze - Astro-Hot

It's been a while. Battling migraines. I started a new preventative med, fingers crossed it will work!
I've also been doing the decluttering project & I'm nearly done. But I learned early on that pretty manicures & decluttering do not go together! My nails kept breaking and peeling so I just left them bare while I was working. I'm 90% done now though so bring on the polish!

I miss my manis so much I'm thinking about doing a mani challenge for June! Last year I did a month of Julep. Maybe another one this year? Or a seasonal challenge like I did in October? I really enjoyed that one! Hmm. :)

Either way, today I selected an untried from my stash, a really beautiful light pink holo from China Glaze called "Astro-Hot".