Regaining my mum style and my sense of self

Mum style. It’s a term that gets bandied around a lot these days doesn’t it? Women pushing against the ‘frumpy mummy’ stigma and trying to remain cool and fashionable, with little ones in tow. Personally, I don’t feel as though I’ve ever been particularly ‘fashionable’ — even when I was in my teens and twenties. I like fashion and I love clothes but being a slave to the high-street — or cutting edge trends — has never really been high up on my list of priorities. But one of the things I do notice about my style since I had the boys, is that there seemed to be a list of things that suddenly became off-limits. I stopped wearing very pale colours. I had my colours done a few years ago and weirdly white was on my list of shades never to wear — but suddenly other pale colours like cream, ivory and stone also got shelved when I had the twins. Long necklaces too, because they always got tugged by tiny, grabbing hands. Anything in a lacy or delicate fabric that could pull — or damage easily — also got put to one side. I didn’t wear too many clothes that needed dry cleaning either; why would you when they’d… Read More

Bringing Up Men and Positive Body Image

Over on Instagram last week there was a flurry of inspiring posts on ‘positive body image’— my favourite being from my blogging buddy Alison who posted a pic of herself and her daughter in matching swimming costumes. When I saw it I literally did a double take and thought— ‘Wow — she’s so brave’ — and then had to have a word with myself and ask ‘Why is that brave?’. Why is a normal woman ‘brave’ for posing in a swimming costume? If she was a model, would I be thinking that? Nope. Of course I wouldn’t. Then I thought about a photo that my boy had taken of me whilst we were in Cornwall. We’d spotted a fantastically ‘Instagrammable’ wall and I’d been keen for him to take a photo of me standing against it. I was really excited about my photo opportunity — the perfect Kodak moment — and I was very excited about sharing it on my Instagram feed. But when I saw it I was so disappointed. I didn’t look like the woman I was hoping to see. And no filter would make me thinner and taller — stretch my fat little dumpy legs — and turn me into the young, thin beauty that I… Read More

Happiness is: {An embroidered top from Zara}

Fashion. It’s a funny old thing isn’t it? These days, there’s so much choice. When I was younger, we were limited to what the shops on our local high-street had in stock. Or — if my mum was feeling generous — we’d take a trip to the city and I’d browse, wide-eyed, through the rails of garments there. Nowadays, if I want a new dress or a pair of shoes, the internet is my first port of call. I don’t tend to browse either; generally I know exactly what I’m looking for and go on a mission trying to track it down. Google —I’m sure other search engines must be available — is my fave shopping companion these days. Without question. Type in ‘Yellow Bag‘ and a myriad of options come up on the screen; do a quick search for something like ‘Embroidered Top’ and you’ve suddenly got every single gorgeous embroidered top under the sun. Which is exactly what happened the other day. 1 — Girl wants embroidered top. 2 — Girl searches for embroidered top. 3 — Girl finds the perfect embroidered top. Simple as that. And what a beauty. It didn’t take too many minutes for me to ‘add to basket’. Those naughty fingers seem to have a mind of… Read More

Colour Your World | #23 Pantone Lilac Gray

I’m so behind on my Pantone posts. I didn’t manage to complete all the colours from last year’s colour predictions — even though I’ve already showcased this year’s colour of the year. But made a pact with myself to carry on with them. So, here’s the next in the series; Pantone Lilac Gray. Of all the colours I’ve showcased so far,  it has been the most difficult to source products for. Slightly more red than standard ‘grey’, this warmed up shade has definitely more than just a hint of lavender. It’s such a beautiful, restful colour — and I found quite a few interior pieces to fit the brief — but fashion was a different story altogether. Although grey is HUGE at the moment, most of the pieces available online are your bog-standard school uniform kinda grey. Not this subtly different  shade. So please bear with me. Whilst these picks are not ‘exactly’ Pantone Lilac Gray, they certainly give a flavour of it. The gorgeous sneakers from Air and Grace are a winner — they’re metallic silver leather but have the most amazing iridescent detailing that looks silver-grey in some lights, lilac in another, so I figured that was all bases covered! Colour Your World |… Read More

Packing for a long weekend away

Even before I had the boys I was never one for packing light. I used to pore over the pages of Red and Grazia, marvelling over glossy pages of chic capsule wardrobes. Then when it came to packing in ‘real’ life, I’d panic and cram in clothes for every eventuality. I’ve never been too good at the pared down look; be it for home, fashion — or life in general. A case of go big or go home. But last month when we went on our little adventure in St Mawes, I made a pact with myself to ‘try’ and pack as lightly as possible. Tricky — as the weather can be so unpredictable at this time of year— but necessary. Particularly as the car was bursting at the seams, with everything two little boys might need for a week away. Two (or three) outfit changes a day for me, plus bikini, wellies, rain-mac, sunhat, maxi-dress, dungarees, sequins (just in case) was not going to cut it. I needed something casual to wear during the day — and possibly a sweater to throw on if things got a little too chilly — plus we’d got a special dinner planned, to celebrate my birthday and wedding anniversary so I wanted something a little bit glam and… Read More

Getting ready for our first family ski holiday with Mark Warner

There’s a LOT of excitement in our home at the mo, as we’ve been getting ready for our first family ski holiday with Mark Warner!! The little boys are so excited about the snow; much chat about this. I’m not convinced that they quite know what ‘skiing’ involves yet but they’ve watched lots of YouTube clips and Instagram Stories of the other current Mark Warner ambassadors. My big, man-shaped boy is beyond excited to go on his first proper skiing trip for more than 20 years. He’s not been ‘proper’ skiing since just  before we got together (which will be 21 years on May 28th this year!!!! Eeeek!!! HOW did that happen??!). He’s been to the Snow Dome on the odd occasion but hasn’t travelled any further than Tamworth — or Milton Keynes — to get his ski fix for a very long time. And I’ve been getting a little bit excited about shopping for some ski-wear essentials for us all. Having never been skiing before it’s been really fun choosing things that I’d never ordinarily look at. Plus it’s been nice to scour the internet for things other than clues on ‘How To Stop When Skiing’ (something that I’ve been getting a… Read More

The best baby changing bag? Meet the PacaPod Firenze

When I was pregnant I spent a lot of time Googling things. How do you breastfeed two babies at once? What’s the best baby changing bag for twins?  The best white-noise app/bottle steriliser/pushchair? You know the kind of thing. I’m not quite sure what we used to do before the days of the internet but these days, if you have a question, you’ll be sure to find the answer on Google. (Other search engines are probably available.) But anyway — I digress. Three and a half years into motherhood and an awful lot of water has passed under the bridge. Instead of breast-pumps and sterilisers I’m now Googling how to deal with tantrums. But strangely enough I think I’ve finally just come across the best baby change bag. For me anyway. When the twins were born I bought a PacaPod Mirano in navy. We’ve still got it; it’s a little scuffed round the edges but very much intact. I bought this particular bag because of it’s HUGE internal proportions — that bad-boy can carry a lot of stuff — and also the fact that it was unisex. My boy balked at some of the change bags that were available (pink bows and ditsy prints are not really his thang) but,… Read More

Colour Your World | #21 Pantone Buttercup

I think anyone who knows me — or reads my blog — will have a good idea what my favourite colour is. It hasn’t always been that colour though. It’s changed throughout my life. In my teens it was purple. I wore purple dungarees and lavender suede desert boots — with purple ribbons for laces — I had violet streaks in my hair and was generally (as you can be in your teenage years) a little bit compulsive about it. I even wrote a diary post listing all of the synonyms of the colour purple. As you do when you’re 16. Weirdo. Anyway, moving swiftly on. In my twenties and early thirties, it was blue. Baby blue, navy blue, teal and turquoise. Lots of variants of the same colour, in a myriad of different shades. I was definitely less obsessed by it —but subconsciously used to gravitate towards things in that colour, for sure. But for the last decade, my eyes and heart are drawn to the colour yellow. It’s such a happy-making colour — endlessly cheerful — particularly when the weather is grey. It’s the colour of sunshine and positivity. And the colour of my latest Pantone post. The next in the palette for 2016 is Pantone… Read More