Fitbit

So for my birthday back in the Summer, my darling boyfriend bought me a Fitbit flex 2.

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The first thought that ran through my mind was,”Is he trying to tell me something? Do I look like I’ve put on weight?” Well, actually I have, 5kg to be precise, oops, it’s true what they say, this whole being in a relationship thing and being ‘comfortable’ definitely makes you put on weight!  

He assured me however that this wasn’t the case and that it was because he know’s I like going to the gym and going on long dog walks and thought I’d like to track my activity.

Well, it’s since become an obsession, nothing beats that feeling when your wrist starts buzzing and the disco lights start flashing, letting you know that you’ve smashed your 10,000 steps target.

I tend to feel particularly smug if I’ve gotten up early, been to the gym in the morning and smashed the target before noon.

And then there’s the flip side, when you’ve been to the gym in the morning and you’re on track and then you go out with the dog and half way round your walk, you realise that you forgot to put your Fitbit back on when you got out of the shower! Nightmare!

I’m pretty active anyway so on a day when I’ve been to the gym, it’s not unusual for me more than double the target.

Fitbit Flex 2 had been great for tracking my morning runs which are usually done on the treadmill in the gym and my dog walks with Dolly, it’s even counted some of my erm ‘bedroom activities’ as ‘steps’ . . . Oh well, I guess sexercise is a real thing, Queen Kylie did sing a song about it after all!

Now I just need to lose that 5kg before my Christmas holiday!

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Hammer Glamour

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Yesterday I was lucky enough to be booked by a photographer who is fast becoming one of my favourites to work with for a Hammer Glamour style shoot at the iconic Bray Studios in Windsor.

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What an amazing experience shooting in a location so rich in horror movie history. 

Hammer Horror occupied Bray Studios from 1952 to 1966 unleashing a whole new era of horror and pumping out numerous titles such as The Curse Of Frankenstein, The Horror Of Dracula and  The Reptile.

Hammer launched the careers of both Peter Cushing and Sir Christopher Lee but their films also featured an array of scantily dress, glamorous young women many of whom went on to become stars such as Joanna Lumley, Caroline Munro, Ingrid Pitt, Valerie Leon, Ursula Andress, Stephanie Beacham and Kate O,Mara, the list goes on and it’s these women who were the inspiration behind the theme of my shoot.

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My shoots precise location was ‘sound stage 3’ (which was originally stage 2 back in the 50’s) where I believe Frankenstein’s lab was filmed in 1957’s The Curse Of Frankenstein. The big door at the front is even the same although the sliding mechanism could do with a dash of WD40 these days!

I made a trip to Beyond Retro especially to purchase some vintage Hammer style, sheer night gowns (as if I need an excuse to shop) for the shoot and I finally managed to find a reason to wear a 1960’s wedding dress I bought from Judy’s Vintage Fair earlier this year. I have to say I’ve come back feeling very inspired after spending the day on hallowed Hammer ground.

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In 15+ years of modelling, this has got to be my favourite location to have shot in.

Unfortunately, the old house, Down Place which was built in 1750 is now pretty derelict even though the sound stages on site are still used by the film industry. 

I often feel like I was born in the wrong era, film wise, fashion wise, music wise and just general lifestyle and I’d love to have been around doing what I do now way back when Hammer was in its hey day, somebody bring me a time machine!!!

Seriously though, I’d love to see horror movies being made again with that old classic Hammer style. 

I was also spoiled after the shoot with a tour of the WHOLE studio lot and an amazing vegan vampire lunch at Oakley Court which was also used for many a Hammer film and might also be recognised by fans of The Rocky Horror Picture Show.

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Tough Mudder In The City 5K

We did it!!!

Not only did we do it, we also had a surprising amount of fun!

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Obviously I packed sensibly for going in to battle . . .

Last year when we signed up for this, I’d never even attempted to go for a run before let alone a 5K run with crazy obstacles but a few months of running 3 – 5 times a week in the gym, I quickly worked up to running 5K so on the day, I at least wasn’t worried about the running, the obstacles however . . .

Well I needn’t have worried, the girls were all absolute superstars, we all helped each other, worked as a team and completed the course in around an hour and raised money for Help for Heroes .

We’d set a £250 target but smashed it and there’s still time to donate to our Just Giving page.

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This was Tough Mudder’s first ever mudless race, we actually didn’t know that when we signed up, we were prepared to take on the mud but when we found out there wasn’t going to be any, I wasn’t complaining, having said that, the ground was wet and muddy through wear and tear from the previous night’s Mudder’s so we still got a little muddy.

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I never thought I’d say that I actually enjoy running but I think I’ve got the bug! I gave myself Sunday as a rest day but this morning, I downloaded Strava and went for my first ever outdoor solo run in Victoria Park.

What’s next? The Goldenball Girls and I have another 5K obstacle race in May, more of a fun one with colour bombs but we are looking in to pushing ourselves with a possible Half Mudder which is 10K and if we do, there WILL be mud!

Horror On Sea 2018

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Horror On Sea is one of my favourite yearly events, organised by the wonderful Paul Cotgrove and set in Southend On Sea, the festival at the Park Inn hotel pulls in film makers and avid fans of the genre from up and down the country and is a great platform for indie horror films to premiere.

I’ve been lucky enough to have films screen there for the past four years running. In 2015, ‘Serial Kaller’ and ‘Axe To Grind’, in 2016, ‘Banjo, in 2017, ‘Zombie Women Of Satan II’ and this year, Sunday 21st January 2018 saw the premiere of ‘Pumpkins’

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Written and Directed by Maria Lee Metheringham, and edited, VFX’d and scored in lightening speed by a very talented bunch, principal photography only wrapped in October and the festivals submission cut off is in November, this was the first time most of the cast and crew had seen the finished article.

We shot mainly up in various locations in Yorkshire so for most that are based near there it was quite a distance from Southend but that considered there was an amazing turn out, one of the actors I think even had a 500 mile round trip.

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The hotel bar next to the function room is always a great place to meet like minded horror freaks and catch up with friends you’ve made over the years, like team Mycho whose film ‘Mask Of Thorn’ screened on the Saturday so I’m yet to see it and Mark Rathbone and the main reason I come to the festival every year (other than that I’ve had films screening each year) Marks ferrets! Their little faces though, too cute!!!

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Team Pumpkins – some of the cast/crew

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Jelly the ferret

I also missed Eileen Daly whose film ‘Witches Brew’ screened on the Saturday.

Every year I say that the next year I’ll do the full weekend but then January seems to come out of nowhere and I’ve ended up working but next year for sure, I’m going to do the full weekend!

Even though I was only there for the one evening, I still left feeling inspired, my friend John, also in the industry came along with me and we bounced a few ideas around in the car home so maybe we’ll have something to screen at the festival next year . . .

 

 

Teeze & Tone

A good few years ago, in fact probably 10 years ago back when I was at the height of my glamour modelling career, I presented a little show called ‘Babe Aerobics’ it was basically a couple of episodes that played on loop on TV during the day and it’s never failed to amaze me the amount of people over the years who have asked me if I’m ever going to do any more . . .

Well it might have taken my 10 years to come up with the goods but I’d like to announce a new era of Dani Fitness!

The videos were actually meant to be available right at the beginning of the month ready for everyone setting their new years fitness goals but due to some pesky technical hitches on amazons part they’ve gone live today.

The videos themselves consist of quick workouts with warm ups and cool downs designed to fit in to your day easily and can easily be done at home as I know not everybody has time to get to the gym every day, if you don’t have a kettle bell or any weights, use a tin of soup from your cupboard. No excuses!

So are you ready to Teeze & Tone with my Glamour Workout? Well come on then, Let’s get physical!

Vol 1 amazon.co.uk/…r-Workout-Vol/dp/B0792LPP6C

Vol 2 amazon.co.uk/dp/B0792NZQBQ

Vol 3 amazon.co.uk/dp/B0792Q39R5

Vol 4 amazon.co.uk/dp/B0792PML47

Guilt Free Glitter

It’s Christmas, and if ever there was an excuse to wear glitter (not that I need an excuse) it’s Christmas!

I’ve always been drawn to anything that sparkles, maybe because I was a unicorn in a past life, all my friends have come to accept that when they see me, they will somehow end up finding glitter on themselves for days and I have to admit, up until now, I’d never really given much thought to where glitter came from and what harm it could do to the environment, I mean something so pretty could hardly be bad right? Well, apparently, that’s not the case.

I guess with it’s metallic facade, I thought it was probably tiny little flakes of metal, I definitely never thought about it being a microplastic getting in to the ocean and putting marine life at risk.

Glitter in cosmetics, when washed off, in the same way as microbeads for which a ban will come in to force by the end of June 2018 find their way down plug holes and in to the ecosystem, it seems glitter is litter!

I can’t imagine my life without glitter, and  thanks to my friend Zoe Disco (yes that’s really her name, I was at her wedding when the new surname was revealed) a life without glitter isn’t something I had to contemplate for long!

Her company eco twinkle stocks ethical, biodegradable glitter made from sustainable plant derived film and contains no plastic. Packaging is recycled and refillable.

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Fine and chunky glitter comes in lots of different colours and is available in 5mm or 10mm pots. A little bit really does go a long way so depending how many Christmas parties you go to, the pots should last for a while .

For this look I have the chunky silver glitter underneath the eye and the fine on the brow bone.

For more details check out http://www.ecotwinkle.com

The Museum Of Witchcraft

The first time I went to The Last Tuesday Society it was for an evening of Absinthe tasting whilst getting up close and personal with all kinds of wonderful scaly beasts, I think at one point I had a snake cuddling my neck, a bearded dragon balanced on my chest and a chameleon perched on my finger, that night the Victor Wynd museum of curiosities that lurks beneath the quirky cocktail bar was closed so I jumped at the chance to go back for the launch night of the temporary exhibit from Cornwall’s Museum Of Witchcraft and to finally see the permanent collection in the basement.

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The Museum Of Witchcraft was founded by Cecil Williamson and opened in 1951 in Castletown, Isle Of Man and was moved to is’s current location in Boscastle, Cornwall in 1960 and through various gifts and acquisitions over the years the collection has grown to be the largest of its type in the world.

The exhibition in London features photographs and a mix of magical objects including a witch mirror, like something straight from the evil queens lair in Snow White, a wax poppet, spells, charms, a fortune telling tea cup and items from a black magicians alter, scary!

After a couple of complementary Hendrik’s gin & tonics from Victor Wynd himself I descended the spiral staircase to feast my eyes upon the wonders that lay below.

Wow, what a collection, erotica, taxidermy, fairies, shrunken heads, a mummified penis and apparently Kylie’s poo although I’m pretty sure that can’t be real, I mean, Kylie doesn’t poo right?

The Museum Of Witchcraft exhibition is running until the end of February so don’t worry if you’re too busy with Christmassy stuff this month, there’s still a time to catch it in the new year.