The Lifestyle Blogger UK

I’ve followed The Lifestyle Blogger UK for a little while now and I absolutely love the range of articles on her website. She includes so many useful articles from the latest list of Blogger Hashtag Hours (which are amazing for scheduling Twitter chats into my diary!) and the most delicious recipes including a Salted Caramel Brownie recipe (Yum!!)

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So imagine my delight when I found out The Lifestyle Blogger UK also has her own gorgeous fashion boutique! The Lifestyle Blogger UK asked me to choose a product to review either a necklace or bracelet and as I favour one particular necklace at the moment I opted for a bracelet. At this point I had no idea what the bracelet would look like and it was quite nice to know there was a surprise coming in the post for me!

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The bracelet arrived so promptly and safely wrapped so as to not get damaged in the post. It was wrapped in a gorgeous little packet with a “The Lifestyle Boutique” label attached. Inside was a pretty little organza bag (and as a quick top tip – don’t throw these away! They are perfect for using to carry earrings or other delicate jewellery on holiday in your suitcase!) This bag held a lovely gold and tan coloured bracelet.

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I always find bracelets quite fiddly to put on. After all usually you need two hands to put them on, resulting on some sort of bizarre finger yoga movements in an effort to get the most delicate of bracelet on your wrist. This one however, was so easy and effortless. Due to the sturdy nature of the material of this bracelet it was able to keep its shape when sliding onto my wrist. After entwining the clasp together it clasped together with ease using a magnetic clasp.

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This bracelet is the perfect accessory for outdoor adventures and holidays in the sun. It would look perfect with that khaki or tan coloured outfit which seems to be making a comeback as we move into Spring/Summer months! It makes the perfect gift for friends and family.

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Definitely make sure you pop by The Lifestyle Blogger UK website when you have a minute. Her articles are fabulous and a new one goes live every Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday! You can also subscribe to ensure you don’t miss any!

Becky at Pretty & Petit

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Achievements and Resolutions 2016/17

So here it is, a brand new fresh year to start again. New ideas, new focus but also a good time to reflect on all the fantastic achievements from the last year. I always take a day between Christmas and New Year to do this. I usually head out of the house (most likely to my local Starbucks) grab myself a mocha and write two lists. I start by writing all of my achievements for the year, using social media and my blog I start at January and work my way through the year, noting key highlights and achievements along the way.

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This is such a feel good exercise and truly makes you focus on all the positive aspects from the year, opposed to the negative which is often what we tend to do without really meaning to.

The next list I create is my resolutions list. It’s worth noting that both of these lists that I write are kept in my notebook that I carry everywhere with me. It helps me keep track that I am actually on course to achieving my goals for the year. I look back at my resolutions twice in the year. The first is at 6 months – usually when I am on holiday in the Summer. I look at what I have achieved so far and make notes on how I can keep on track to achieve the others going forward. I then look at it again in December when it comes to making a new list to find those resolutions I can carry over into the new year and to produce new ideas for future resolutions.

My Highlights and Achievements of 2016

Passing my driving test – It took a couple of attempts but I’m finally out on the road! Hooray!

Getting a new car – My dream first car, a Ford Fiesta, 5 door in red.

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Moving into a new job – I now am in a brand new college, meeting new people and getting involved in new challenges (which involves learning about a whole new range of careers!)

Visiting beautiful Lake Garda in Italy – On my wish list for a few years now and I finally was able to go and visit this beautiful lake.

Started Hula Hooping – Through attending HulaFit classes.

My Resolutions for 2017

These are a few of my top resolutions for 2017! Hopefully they give you some ideas for your New Year’s resolutions too!

To find a new hobby – I am such a creative person and I think this is something that has truly been lacking in my life. I’m setting out to find a new creative hobby and hopefully I’ll post some of my makes up on this blog!

To go on more day trips – I have made a list of days out in the UK and plan to visit at least one per month.

To walk more – I have set myself the challenge of completing one long walk a month and entering myself into a walking challenge. I am due to have another foot operation so we’ll see how we get on with this one! In some ways in may aid my recovery!

To read more – I have set myself a target of 2 books a month minimum.\

To have a Sunday night movie – I find this is the best way to help me relax for the week ahead. I’m planning to make a record of all the movies I watch throughout the year.

To be more creative – I feel so much better when I have spent a few hours being creative. I would like to draw at least once image per month and also create one collage a month. I’ll be posting these on my Instagram too to prove it!

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What are your new year resolutions? I’d love to hear what you have planned for 2017!

Becky at Pretty & Petit

#apovgiftswap

So here I am – back with a bang! (or for those who know me well, a crash, bang, wallop! Either way, I have left you all for so long and I am terribly sorry to have left you in a lurch wondering if I would ever return but more on my little life update soon enough!

Today I want to let you know about a fabulous initiative I’m getting involved in after stepping back into the beautiful world of blogging. This fun opportunity involves swapping Christmas gifts with fellow bloggers whilst being able to network with one another, sharing ideas, happy thoughts and general positive vibes!

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This was something that I got involved with last year and I found it so much fun! It also enabled me to find out more about different blogs and writing styles which was so inspiring.

You’ll be able to see what I received closer to Christmas and I can’t wait to share my favourite Christmas gift ideas!

This year the gift swap is being organised by A Piece of Viola who has a fabulous Travel, Lifestyle and Fashion blog! Take a read by clicking here and if you fancy reading and discovering the blogs of those involved make sure you follow #apovgiftswap on Twitter.

Becky at Pretty & Petit

New Year, New You – How to Gain Instagram Followers That Stick Around!

As part of my ‘New Year, New You’ series this month I’m asking bloggers to share their plans, tips and resolutions for 2016! 

Today is the turn of the lovely Louisa Rogers, who has a vibrant and beautiful blog accompanied by a fabulous and equally stunning Instagram feed. She shares her tips on how to use Instagram, how to gain followers and most importantly how to keep them. Make sure you take a read of her blog by clicking here.

Contrary to popular belief, Instagram is not an easy business. Amongst the meme pages, the self-obsessed 12 year olds and the Russian spambots lie real people who are interested and passionate about your content. The only problem you have to get around, is finding them, and keeping them interested. I used to notice that my follower count was volatile and I would lose 5 people overnight for no apparent reason, now I only ever notice the odd person unfollowing and I can put that down to one thing only…

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My Instagram pre-overhaul… as you can see there was no over-riding aesthetic style, and the whole thing looked messy and a bit crap!

I used Instagram (@louisagrogers, if you’re curious) for a long time without taking any notice of aesthetics: I guess you could say that I used it for its’ intended purpose, as a real-time photo-sharing app with an emphasis on the social! However as I became more serious about my blog, I realised that if I was going to gain a decent number of followers on Instagram like my influences @Helibells and @LisaMcconniffe (amongst many others!) I was going to start making sacrifices.

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My Instagram pre-overhaul… Once you realise how important the cohesive feed of images is to followers, not just individual photos, it’s a lot easier to use Instagram more wisely and make your whole feed look awesome and appealing.

I stopped posting random, funny moments with friends and only posting from my camera roll. I started considering using the same filters for every post to keep things quite coherent (Ps. I use Clarendon, that’s mine now, no touching) and making sure any images I post fit my colourful, slightly vintage, slightly funny aesthetic.

I do make the odd exception for a hilarious meme because they are uber-shareable, people always tag there friends in them, thereby increasing your visibility and I think humour and fashion should be placed together more often!

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My Instagram post overhaul… My new approach is still as quirky and varies, but I make sure to use similar colours and filters throughout to keep things relevant. I can thank this change of attitude for all my new followers!

I now wholly understand why many bloggers have separate blog and personal Instagram profiles , as the ultra-curated content of influencers who have over 10,000 followers is often very glossy and impersonal, almost business-like, and I understand them wanting to retain Instagram for those fleeting, semi drunk moments with friends that we all used it for back in 2012.

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My Instagram post overhaul… I even feel happier looking at my feed when it’s nicely composed!

Curating your Instagram may be upsetting at first, and I still sometimes hate how disciplined I’ve become, especially when I upload a photo that I think will fit and it suddenly throws off the entire photo-feed with the wrong colours or composition, but it does pay off. I had about 300 followers on Instagram for the first year and a half that I used it. Since changing to a more carefully considered use of the app, and hashtagging mercilessly in my comments (yes, I’m that girl – but it works) I have garnered over 600. This number is by no means impressive or putting money in my bank account, but I think it does prove that anyone is capable of gaining followers and therefore exposure by making a very simple choice.

So what will you do? Do you want to keep Instagram as a platform as light-hearted and spontaneous as Snapchat? Or are you looking to boost awareness of your blog and personal brand by stepping up your #instagame? Let us know in the comments section below!

UK Blog Awards – Voting is open!

I’ve entered into the UK Blog Awards under the Lifestyle and Events categories, so if you enjoy reading my little blog please take a second to vote for me! Whilst you’re on there make sure you take a look at all the other fabulous bloggers that have entered – there’s some truly wonderfully written blogs out there.

Vote for me now in the UK Blog Awards #UKBA16

Thank you!

Becky
Pretty & Petit

Christmas Box Swap with Twisted Beauty

So a little bit of a belated post but I had a bit of a break from posting over the Christmas period! I did however want to share a fabulous Christmas box swap that I did with Twisted Beauty – kind of like Secret Santa, but not so secret! We each had to give each other five general things on our wish list and purchase gifts up to a budget of £20.

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I absolutely loved buying all the cute gifts for Rachael from Twisted Beauty on her list! She had owls, tea, something mauve, Home Bargains and photographs. It was so fun trying to find the items and within the budget as well. It gave me a few fun outings out in Covent Garden and on Oxford Street.

I definitely gave Rachael a bit of a challenge! My 5 things were:

  • The Big Bang Theory
  • Yankee Candles
  • Anything Kawaii
  • Cities – London/Paris
  • Sweet Treats

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First off she got me a fabulous trivial pursuit of The Big Bang Theory. I love games so I’m so excited to play! I have been watching The Big Bang Theory lately and it’s one of my favourite TV series so I’m looking forward to testing my knowledge now!

My box had the unmistakable scent of gorgeous Yankee candles which I have become besotted with this Christmas. The beautiful scents fill the house and make it smell like a Winter wonderland! I love them! Rachael bought me some lovely wax melts which will ensure the scents will linger. Yum!

I love anything cute and kitsch so when I found this most beautiful llama bag in my box I was so delighted! I love Tofu Cute and originally had a cute little sushi bag from them. This is a perfect replacement and I can’t wait to use it as my reusable shopping bag from now on.

As you may know I am a total fan of anything handmade and unique. This cute printed mirror with all things London is the perfect addition to my make up bag. I love little compact mirrors – they’re so handy for keeping in your bag and ensuring your make up is on point throughout the day!

We met the Jewellerybox.co.uk business whilst attending the Bloggers Conference back in the Summer when I first met Rachael. I absolutely loved all their cute designs and I was so excited to open up some fabulous pink doughnut earrings! I love pink and love big bold earrings so I’m sure I will be wearing these a lot!

Want to see what I got Rachael from Twisted Beauty? Take a read of her lovely review by clicking here.

Becky at Pretty & Petit

27. Impossible to Buy For

For those of you who are stuck for ideas on what to buy for loved ones for Christmas this year don’t despair! I have a fabulous business to share with you this week called Impossible to Buy For.

Impossible to Buy For is a website suited to those who are totally stuck for gift ideas for loved ones in the run up for that special occasion be it Christmas, Birthday, Valentines Day etc. Set up by blogger, Louise Croft who owns blog, Pauper to Princess. All of the gifts are supplied by Amazon to provide gifts for literally everyone in your life!

“So many of my friends and family are impossible to buy for, and I knew I couldn’t be the only one feeling this way, so I figured it was time to fix the problem.” – Louise Croft, Founder of Impossibletobuyfor.com

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What I love about Louise’s website is how easy it is to find a gift. What I often find with larger department store websites is that it can take a while to find the perfect gift but this has all the ideas in one place for any budget.

So are you looking for some gift ideas? I’ve put together a few lists for you below for the different people in your life! I hope it provides you with some inspiration!

Gifts for the lady in your life

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Kate Spade Watch – £173.50

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Pink Lemonade Candle – £12

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Bottega Gold Prosecco – £47.99

Gifts for those who love a good book

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Invisible Bookshelf – £39.90

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Dawn O’Porter Book – £14.99

Gifts for those who love to bake

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Macaron Pyramid – £22.81

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Mug Cakes Recipes – £3

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Retro Waffle Maker – £27.15

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Chocolate Brussel Sprouts – £9.95

Gifts for the creative ones

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Artistic Clutch Bag – £29.99

 

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Illustrated Map of London – £13.99

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Vogue Colouring Book – £7

and of course I have to include my total faves!

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LOVE Light – £29.99

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Dressing Table – £69.97

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Fujifilm Polaroid Camera – £76.49

Do you have any gift ideas? Share them with us in the comments!

Click here to visit the full range of products available.

Becky at Pretty & Petit

Images taken from impossibletobuyfor.com

#BloggersXmas

On Saturday 5th December 2015 I ventured over to Finch’s Pub in Moorgate to attend the Bloggers Xmas Party hosted by Soeurs De Luxe.

On arrival we were given a beautiful personalised keyring each from Aloha Lola Cards which had a fun caricature and our own Twitter handle on the back. We were also given a fabulous guide to all of the wonderful brands exhibiting on the day.

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Finch’s Pub was a beautiful setting with cosy armchairs, with twinkly Christmas lights and the smell of freshly cooked chips and mulled cider. It was the perfect location to chat with friends and the brands available on the day.

I met with a variety of brands offering everything from lashes from Lash Perfect, jewellery from Miglio Jewellery, hats from Katherine Elizabeth Millinery, through to green teas from t plus drinks, cheesecake from Sweet Cheesus and even men’s pants from Penny Dreadful! Make sure you keep your eyes peeled for the next few weeks as I will be featuring some of the fantastic brands I met on the Pretty & Petit blog! This was all accompanied by nail art, nibbles and a Christmas selfie wall.

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I also managed to get my hands on a fantastic magazine called Blogosphere Magazine. I definitely recommend it for anyone thinking of starting up a blog or looking for new blogs to follow. It’s so insightful to read other bloggers work and so inspiring!

At the end of the event we headed home with a fantastic goody bag and lots of new friends and brand contacts. Thank you @SoeursdeLuxe for a fantastic #BloggersXmas event!

Becky at Pretty & Petit

#BigBloggerConference

Yesterday I attended the #BigBloggerConference! The event was organised by @LDNMeetUp and was held in Hotel Russell, a beautiful hotel in Russell Square, London. Chandeliers adorned the hallways with beautiful decorative mirrors and gorgeous hanging baskets lined the fence to the grand entrance of the hotel.

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Front of the Hotel Russell, London

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The beautiful chandeliers throughout the building.

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Desperate for one of these mirrors for the hallway!

We were provided with some cute gifts from Ohh Deer and Jelly Belly and started the day with a number of really insightful workshops, starting with ‘Pinterest 101’ in which Elizabeth Sellers, Pinterest UK Ambassador gave loads of fantastic tips on how to use Pinterest with blogging. This was great as I have been using my personal Pinterest account more and more lately. I love looking through the beautiful pictures, gaining inspiration and creating wishlists! It’s fantastic for my blog too as it features a lot of smaller businesses and Etsy shops which I have not come across yet. I’m always excited about what I may find on there. So make sure you keep an eye out for Pretty & Petit on Pinterest soon!

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Check out these cute gifts from Ohh Deer and Jelly Belly!

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The lovely Elizabeth navigating us through Pinterest.

Next up we had a workshop from Jasmin Charlotte, Lifestyle Blogger in SEO. I have to admit, whenever I hear ‘SEO’ I seem to cower a little. I absolutely love social media and marketing – I do it as my full time job! but when it comes to SEO something about it makes me want to run into a corner and hide. It’s just not an area that I have an interest in. Jasmin however changed that yesterday. Through providing fantastic tips and advice she informed us of the best ways in which to aid SEO through our blogs. She noted that content is key and provided useful stats about the optimum number of words to include in blog posts and so on. It was very insightful and it was a fun approach to looking at SEO from a bloggers perspective.

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The lovely Jasmin providing us with an insight into the world of SEO.

Finally we had a workshop with Sarah Moody of The Prosecco Diaries in how to monetize our blogs. It was so nice to hear a bloggers perspective on how to do this. It is rare to hear of how much a blogger may be earning but with the rise in blogger and vlogger ‘celebrities’ it just goes to show that if you can put the hard work in you will definitely reep the rewards. I’m excited to take on board some of her advice through consultancy and developing my blog brand. It’ll be exciting to see what the future holds for my little blog!

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The lovely Sarah sharing her top tips on monetizing our blogs!

We headed out to have some (really delicious) cake! before heading out for lunch in the park opposite the hotel. As you might recall it was a beautiful 29 degrees in London yesterday and it was so nice to see everyone enjoying the hot weather. I definitely recommend heading over to Russell Square if you are ever in London. It’s close to the British Museum and is such a lovely place to stop and have a picnic. They also have a cute little cafe there that sells sandwiches, cake, ice cream and even prosecco!

We headed back to the hotel for the second part of the day which incorporated an exhibition. This interactive exhibition provided us with the opportunity to meet with brands and see their products first hand! I handed out my lovely new business cards and collated information of the amazing brands that were exhibiting. Brands included:

  • Shoeaholics
  • Scoliosis UK
  • Made by Jade
  • The Gifting Lounge
  • Look Fantastic, Beauty Expert and HQ Hair
  • Designed by Henna
  • The Parlour
  • Comb
  • Beau Bronze
  • Suti Skincare
  • SASS
  • House of Fraser
  • Heaven
  • Jewellerybox.co.uk
  • My Protein
  • Bee Good

(Sorry if I have missed anyone!)

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The amazing Shoeaholics stand. I absolutely loved their cute cupcakes and check out the leopard shoes on the right! Stunning!

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Made By Jade stand. Loved the cute leather bracelets!

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The Gifting Lounge stand. So bright and colourful! Such a cute range.

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The Look Fantastic stand, full of beautiful boxes of beauty gifts.

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Beautiful packaging on the SASS stand.

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A sneak A/W preview from House of Fraser!

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JewelleryBox.co.uk has the cutest range of jewellery. So many dinosaurs!

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The Heaven skincare stand. Loved the packaging of their gorgeous products.

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Bee Good with their bee inspired products and cute sweet and savoury biscuits!

There were also ‘tweeting’ challenges throughout the afternoon in which we had to provide tips and our favourite products to the brands we had come across throughout the afternoon. Make sure you look out for some reviews of these fantastic brands in the coming weeks!

The Parlour were offering cute braiding on their stand and how could I resist? These cute braids literally lasted all day and I really didn’t want to take it out at the end of the day. Their salon isn’t too far from me so I’m so excited to go and try them out – especially after reading all the amazing reviews they have received!

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Beautiful braids from The Parlour

At the end of the day a raffle was held with proceeds going to the Scoliosis UK charity. I never say no to a raffle and was absolutely delighted when I didn’t only win one prize but two! The first was a lovely gift set from Paul Mitchell and the second was an amazing beauty bundle from W7. I couldn’t wait to get home and try everything out so be prepared for some upcoming reviews soon!

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My beauty bundle from W7

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Collection of goodies from Paul Mitchell

Overall it was a fantastic day and I wish I could do it all over again! Thank you so much to the organisers from @LDNmeetup, including  and . You put in so much hard work for us all and it truly paid off. I can’t wait until the next event!

Becky at Pretty & Petit

Disney Drawing

I’ve recently got really into drawing! Usually I’m not very good at it but I do find something quite relaxing about it when I’m just copying a design. So I recently jumped onto Pinterest and scrolled through to find a few cute Disney designs and now I’m even contemplating getting one as a tattoo! What do you all think? Any recommendations as to which character I should draw next?

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