Anyone that knows me will know that 9.9/10 I will take a cosy night in - complete with a takeaway/netflix or Harry Potter marathon/even more completely unnecessary snacks etc. - over a night out any day of the week.

The 0.1 is dedicated to my inner wild child which sometimes likes to pop out and drink too much gin, very occasionally slut drop - subsequently falling over and landing in the foetal position on the floor - and make an even bigger prat of myself than I usually do but luckily she stays tucked away most of the time.

But anyway, I like a good night in, and I think I do them pretty well too. I can nail the food part (obviously, goes without saying), I can usually pick a Netflix classic that everyone will want to watch/I have carefully curated a friendship group that all love Harry Potter so let's be honest, that's what's going on isn't it? But sometimes you want a bit more than just a standard night in. Maybe it's a friend's birthday. Maybe it's a celebration. Maybe you're feeling all yolo/"COME ON QUEENS LET'S SLAY THE WORLD AND BE ALL SASSY INDEPENDENT WOMAN"... and that's where this post is going to help you make your night the "night in" equivalent to Beyonce.

Who run the world, girls, and all that...
1. Choose your location 
So Ally and I fancied a night in and we fancied feeling a bit swish - swish, LOL, nope I have no idea who I am anymore either - so of course we went back to one of my all time favourite hotels in London, The Ampersand. Set in the heart of South Kensington, The Ampersand is a 5 star boutique hotel (and restored Victorian building fyi, check the sass on that) super closeby to the V&A, Natural history museum and many more. The location is not only perfect for your Beyonce themed girls night in but also especially amazing for any London first timers or anyone looking for a real taste of London.

Now, apart from the actual location of The Ampersand, here are some reasons why I want to move in and never leave;
  • The bed. The bed is huge, the bed is beautiful, the bed feels like you are sleeping in clouds that have been spritzed with some kind of magic goodness. Basically I want/need the bed in my life every night.
  • The bathroom is not only monochrome and more stylish than Olivia Palermo but it has heated floors and it's basically heaven on earth.
  • The restaurants serve a dreamy dinner and the BEST gluten free afternoon tea. I actually previously reviewed a stay here and the food before so I'll pop that link here.
  • The staff are wonderful and so friendly that I want them all to be my friends. Does that make me sad? Possibly. Do I care? Definitely not.
And that's just a few reasons. Honestly, treat yourself to a night here and you'll see why I cannot stop fangirling.

2. Choose your people
The cool kids say your vibe attracts your tribe and I couldn't bloody agree any more. One of my favourite things about age is you care a little bit less about the things that don't matter. Over the years people have joined my little squad and others have dropped away and I can honestly say that anyone in my life right now is there because I 100% want them to be there. Obviously you all know about Ally (if you don't, where on earth have you been?), she is basically the cooler, funnier version of me and no girls night goes ahead without her <3

3. Snacks
I may make diabolical life decisions but one thing I do OK at is the snack run. On our girls night in, after ordering room service (pizza and chips fyi) we whacked out our little box of cupcakes - alongside some prosecco because if you don't go basic are you even a blogger - and devoured them all whilst watching Friends/Harry Potter/Netflix*.

*When I say watching, I mean having it on in the background while we talk over the whole entire thing.

4. Entertainment
Now, if you and your girls are like Ally and I then you won't even feel like you need entertainment because let's be honest, you are the entertainment (anyone else have those friendships where you genuinely consider making yourself a comedian double act but realistically you're the only ones that find each other funny?) but... if you're having a day off - because, you know, can't be the life and soul of the party all the time, then you need your entertainment ready. 

Something to watch;
  • Grey's Anatomy - my one true love, queen bae bee, my everything. If you haven't already seen it, start it now and join the queue for Derek Shepherd/Mark Sloane/Jackson Avery.
  • Suits - Another of my all time favourites and 100% most definitely absolutely not because Harvey Specter is my dream man. Nope, not at all because of that.
  • First Dates - my current favourite thing on TV because it manages to equally make my dating life feel less tragic and give me hope that good guys exist.
  • Harry potter. I don't need to say any more do I?
Something to read;
  • My good friend and absolute blimmin star Elle Croft has released her first ever novel The Good Wife and whilst I barely even have time to empty my bladder right now, I am one chapter in and I already absolutely LOVE it. Order a copy here and thank me later.
  • Erm, this blog. Obviously. (*insert eye roll/LOL JK TOTALLY TAKING THE PISS emoji here*)
  • Sophie Milner's blog. Soph is a friend of mine and absolutely KILLING the game on instagram but for me, her blog has always been something I've loved devouring. Her recent post about playing the Cool girl in relationships/whilst dating was nothing short of brilliant and summed up exactly how I currently feel.
5.Pimp it up
If you follow me on Instagram then you'll know that I'm all about being as extra as it gets and every little extra helps so obviously I took 399593439 (nearly dead) roses so I could rip off every petal and have the most indulgent bath in existence. It made for a great gram but a f**king awful clean up job so you know, those extra details are down to you.

Lol. No you're all of a sudden slightly embarrassed about your levels of doing it for the gram.
And I think that's where I'm gonna wrap this post up. I hope you enjoyed it, I hope you got some inspo for a girls night in, and I hope if you ever need a place to stay or fancy treating yourselves that you think of The Ampersand because it really is a beaut!

Where's your favourite place to stay in London? What's your favourite thing to do on a girl's night in?


Huge thanks to The Ampersand for letting us feel like the Kardashians for a day/night. We'll be back soon!



I can't remember what preceded or followed that statement from Ally when I casually spoke about my following week but I know those words were said at some point. I think - I say I think because we talk a thousand times a day so it's hard to remember y'know? - it was said during a conversation where I was probably being an anxious, overthinking mess and probably said something about forever failing life.

Because I do consistently fail life/make hilariously awful decisions but at least I have great stories off of the back of them, right?


Case in point.

But yeah, my point to this long ramble is mostly that ever since I started blogging full time nearly 3 years ago and said bye to "normal" life and hi to 5:30am - midnight work days, I haven't ever really stopped and taken a proper step back. I've never really had a full day off - no YOU wrote a blog post on Christmas day - I've never really had time out. I've never really stepped off of the ridiculously crazy carousel that life as a full time blogger is to take a moment out and reflect on everything that I've done/achieved and I think that in doing so, you tend to never actually appreciate what your life is, your successes and most importantly, living in the moment.

I guess part of this is because I would like to think I was one of the least self-indulgent souls on the planet - even saying that makes me want to shrivel up like a prune and die inside because it feels like calling myself that is the complete opposite - and I am forever batting away compliments as if they physically pain me (sometimes they do), playing down any achievement and basically just portraying myself as a walking disaster (I mean, let's be honest, not much acting goes into that does it?)

But after said conversation with Ally, it sort of forced me into reassessing things a bit. I went for a long ass walk sans phone and thought about the last 3 years and honestly just thought, f**king hell girl, you ain't done bad.

BRB while I vom into a bowl of self indulgence.

So yeah, this post is about going to the BAFTA's with EE, it's about walking the red carpet and feeling very momentarily like a mix of Beyonce and Blake lively and let me just tell you lads, I was all about that feeling. But mostly it's about the fact that no matter what job you do and where you're at in life, from time to time you really need to take a step back and appreciate it all.

Because what's the point in working your ass off if you don't even truly reap the rewards?

Shoes - ASOS

So this gal pal was lucky enough to be taken to the BAFTA's with EE. Lancome did my makeup (shoutout to @itsonlyabitofmakeup for making me look 100000x better than I usually do), I whipped on my dress and then we headed for drinks with the rest of the team before walking THE GODAMN MOTHERPLUCKING RED CARPET.

There are two things to note. Red carpets are not as glamorous as they look and they are stressful (I knew this from Cannes but lol forgot all about when I was swishing around in my princess dress). And secondly, we got to use the 4GEE Style Scanner which basically creates one of those sassy little gifs and allows people to shop what you're wearing. And that was really cool and made me feel momentarily like a celeb before realising that absolutely nobody knew who I was. Lol.

After going up - and down because you know, gotta get that gram - the red carpet we then went in to the Royal Albert hall where I stalked Angelina Jolie (the woman who made it cool to have humongous lips, god I love you Ange), watched the ceremony, drunk champagne and sort've just kept looking around in awe because honestly, how the hell did I even get there?
So yeah, as I sit here nearly a couple of weeks on with avocado and coffee stains on my pyjamas and feeling approximately 100000000% less sassy and glamorous than I did on that night, I'm really glad I decided to put this post together with a few random images shot on that night. Because when I'm old and wrinkly af and my kids think I'm the most uncool Mum at the school gates because I'll probably be bringing them Harry Potter related snacks and getting a random student to take a snap of me for an #OOTD, I'm hoping I can look back on this and think "yeah... you did good girl".

Because let's face it, right now, life is so busy that the only thing I'm doing good at is replying to emails 3 weeks after receiving them and never taking a day off.

And that's it from me folks. I hope you enjoyed a few of the snaps. I hope you enjoyed having a sneak peak inside the BAFTA's/the red carpet. And I hope, even just 0.01% of you was just a little bit inspired to truly believe that with a lot of hard work and determination, there really is nothing you can't achieve.

Sending lots of love and good vibes and mostly just prayers that you're not also covered in coffee stains and avocado smush because honestly, it's really not the hashtag goals morning I had in mind.

*insert eye roll emoji here*


Thank you so, so much to EE for taking me to the BAFTA's, it was a total dream come true!

© the Elle next door

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