Yep, I went to another show. This time, my Mum and I went down to The Ideal Home Show at Earls Court Exhibition Centre. It doesn't just run for a weekend; it runs from 14-30th March, half of a whole month! It's supposed to be very popular so I went feeling intrigued, but I suppose I didn't set my hopes that high because I didn't much enjoy the National Home Improvement Show in 2013. Thank goodness I was pleasantly surprised!
When we were approaching the venue from Earl's Court station, we could see that spread of pink flowers from a mile away! Last time I'd been to Earls Court was for Hyper Japan 2013, and it wasn't too tricky to find. With this, though, there was no missing it. They had literally wallpapered Earls Court and how could you not want to go and stand on that synthetic grass? XD
I think it would be helpful to do my usual Things To Do list in those same groups:
Things To Do: Ground Floor
- First and foremost, we did GREEN, which was GARDENS.
That had ornaments, awnings, sheds, garden design - this was one of my favourite sections. A bit depressing as well as my Mum's been trying to get our garden into tip top shape for years. So, these beautiful gardens made us feel, er, moderately jealous.
There was a little alcove where we could go in, look at six different gardens and vote for our favourites. My favourite was called opposites attract, based on circles and squares. It had a big dome, little discs on the floor, a square fountain, and I happily imagined myself curled up in there with a book.
My Mum's favourite was the one with the built in sofa. I guess you'd have to get something to cover that when it rains.
Paintballing =( There was a guy doing a deal on booking a group paint balling day, but as I'm saving up for my Cyprus holiday, I couldn't do it. What a shame.
- Second, we looked at INTERIORS which I think was pink.
That had furniture, bedrooms, the study beds and appliance companies we saw at the Home and Improvements Show, but I mainly remember furniture. Such lovely furniture.
-We literally (figuratively) breezed through the GREY Technology bit as it didn't really appeal to me.
I saw gadgets, home cinema experiences, this air freshener/ humidifier appliance that we got a free perfume sampler for, and boy, I wanted to buy it just based on that scent. But I though I'd wait, and a good thing too because we made pricey purchases later. There was this cool one I remember that was a smoke alarm that you could wave at to shut up, instead of having to get up there and press the button. It was trying to promote smoke alarms being a help, not a hassle.
- We saw those prop up houses that you could go inside and have a look around, and a seated demonstration area. I don't even remember what colour that was. I was gonna get some fish and chips (I'd been craving for it so that was pretty cool!) but it was like £8.90 for a portion =( I tried to talk myself into 'It's A Treat!' mode but not even my Mum would let me buy it, so I thought, okay fine. There's a place near my house that does delicious fish and chips, and I thought £5.50 was the top end, at the time, let alone 9 quid. So instead I got a small £3 mocha. That was delish.
I can barely remember what that was. but I do remember seeing the Naked Flame fireplaces (website) before we went upstairs, which was an eco-friendly and better looking alternative to a chimney. They were awesomely gorgeous.
Things To Do: First Floor
This was the interesting bit for us, as we weren't entirely sure what the sections were about. I kind of preferred it because it felt cosier, like Camden Lock market or something. That may have been because when you go upstairs, there's less space between the floor and the ceiling, so downstairs feels huge.
Interestingly, this was also were we made all of our purchases.
- We came up the escalators into Woman (Red or something?)
This was fashion, health and beauty and jewellery and stuff. I saw these lovely copper bracelets but putting them on was too fiddly. I'm not much of an accessories person so it wasn't for me. Very pretty though.
- Technically we went to Shopping first. (Dark Blue? Look man, I'm not remembering these colours any more okay, I'm SORRY.) Here there were lots of household appliances and LOTS of demonstrations being done to sell them. We bought the Supervac1000 which really pulled me in because our vacuum is big, heavy, and honestly just falling apart. Every time I pick it up there's another issue. Anyway.
The guy who sold us the Supervac1000 was really pleasant and welcoming. I'm starting to notice that many shows we go to, there always one person who goes over and above to be friendly for the sake of being friendly, not just to sell. And you can tell because they'll happily continue talking to you even after you've bought, usually about something completely unrelated. Its so nice to find those people.
- Just before we ended up in Woman again, we turned into the last bit we hadn't been to, Food, Orange.
It reminded me SO MUCH of Camden! It's like a lil' food market in there! You got burgers, bread, fancy chocolatiers, portable cafes, diners, parties, cakes, sweets, cultural foods, and so on and so on. I would recommend that you go just to check it out.
I was stunned, but I actually didn't buy ANY FOOD. It was so ironic because that was mainly what I spent my money on last week; comfort foods. For some reason I just wasn't in the mood to eat, even with all of this delicious food in my face. I would happily eat it now, heh heh. Though some of the food has no coverings of plastic windows in front, which wasn't very hygienic. Then again,just before we went upstairs I bought a mocha from the fish and chips place.
Here's The Thing
Oh yeah - and there was a RESTAURANT in there! Yes, no lie! It was awesome. I would have loved to try it, but by the time we got round there, I knew I didn't have much energy left to go on. It's a bit of a shame with me and shows - I an stay for up to about 5 hours, if I'm having a great time, but then I just have to go. I think people go and wander around, then sit down, have a nice meal and rest, maybe watch one of the demonstrations on the main stage, then gather their energy and explore the rest. Basically make a day of it, which I'd love to do. But my chronic fatigue thing means that straying too far from my bed for too long is a seriously bad idea. Once it hits about 5 hours, its hard for me to compute anything. Bit of a shame really, but there you go. Life is such.
I came back with goodies... again O_O
My spending from today, London Super Comic Con 2014, and the Knitting & Stitch Show 2014 - which all happened within a two week time frame - have admittedly put me about £150-£250 over my budget for this month. Also I had to pay off the rest of my Cyprus holiday, buy books for uni, and so on so my expenses spreadsheet is looking pretty bad. But I sold quite a lot on ebay, and removing those three events, I would have spent a lot less than my budget, so I think next month will even it out.
-- So we bought that Supervac 1000 (more details), it was £40 which was probably more than we could've got it for elsewhere, but I felt would be good value for money.
-- We bought these packs of Dizolve (more details) which are non-bio washing sheets. They are way lighter than powder so I hope they work as well!
-- Finally we made 2 purchases at Kedem Cosmetics (website). My Mum was being shown the nail treatment by this very friendly and bubbly lady who I think was called Roxi, and we were with her for ages because she was just so nice and chatty. My Mum was unsure about it (I think we bought it for £20, but even so, my Mum doesn't normally buy nail stuff anyway) so I bought it for her and joked to her that including the £50 silk top I got her (Here for more), that was her Mother's Day gift FOR LIFE. But of course I knew secretly I was getting her something else for the day plus making a fancy card, which I will do a post about.
-------- as for me, I ended up being roped in as well but my interest was caught because I have always had bad skin and had been considering some sort of peel for ages but didn't know enough about it to go for it. So I ended up buying the face peel and a moisturizer at a special price. I just can't believe they were so kind as to put in the soap for me as well. Kedem products are expensive but if I like the products, I would definately go back. I'm trying to take a bit more care of myself.
Yay! When we got home we saw the freebies and the bag and it was like an extra treat! 1001 carper freshener, Ariel 3-in-1 pods (Never used them, they look like alien nanotechnology LOL!), Dover Hair Therapy Shot, & Sanex Shower gel.
Also got a Knorr bag which had 2 gravy samplers, recipe cards, and a voucher. I made pasta witht he chicken gravy yesterday. It tasted pretty good (naturally, I used too much) so I think I may buy some more. Got a scent sampler from Arabian Oud (the air freshener/humidifier company) and I wondered again if I should've bought that, but I don't think I actually would have used it; we already have something similar at home that I don't use. It looked great though and the aromas were amazing.
I think it's very unlikely that you'd go to Ideal Home Show and not find anything that interests you, but say that WAS the case, you'd at least have your bag of goodies. I love getting bags from conventions, it's kind of exciting to be given a semigift; even if they have nothing in them but the show guide, or a few leaflets. I dunno why. It might be a subliminal thing saying, 'Buy something to put in this bag!' Which of course we did :3
We came back just before 3 o'clock, and again I was surprised at how long we spent there. I was getting quite tired by the upper floor, before speaking to the Kedem representatives, and after that I felt energised again. My Mum asked if I wanted to stay a bit longer, seeing as I felt stronger, but I knew that really, that extra energy was only giving me a window of time to get home before I hit rock-bottom exhaustion, and got cranky and snappy. I wanted to quickly get home before it got there.
I really, really enjoyed it. I'm already searching for the next time the Ideal Home Show runs. Can't wait to go back.
To see the last show I went to, click HERE!
Normally, I post about shows and conventions on my other blog.
To see lifestyle shows I have been to previously, check my main blog Star: The Alter Ego Writer.