Friday, 2 December 2016

Snow White and Belle: Mummy and baby cosplay at Newcastle Film and Comic Con

Hello all! Since Halloween this year was a quieter affair I wanted to share with you the fact that I did wear a costume with my little one but it was a bit later than I had originally planned (I have another ready for when we get some snow eventually but you'll have to wait for that!).

We went to Newcastle Film and Comic Con which was a quieter affair than its London counter part, and certainly a lot quieter than MCM. Having said that it was a nice excuse to get out and about with the little miss and get dressed up.

My costume was the same Snow White one I made for world book day back in 2015 and this is the third time I have worn it so it has really been worth the time and effort it took to make it (I did iron it I promise but it creases like a nightmare!). The costume Elizabeth is wearing was brought back from Disneyland Paris by some of our friends - I haven't dared make any baby clothes yet as she is growing so fast I want to make her something that will last longer than a couple of months. Forgive me if I'm biased but I think she makes the cutest little Belle!

 I didn't buy much while I was there, but one stall gave me a great deal on a few bits of nerdy jewellery. I got a Nuka Cola bottle cap necklace, some atom earrings (great for when I go back to work!) and this poison apple necklace.

One thing I will say is that Elizabeth certainly seems to know what to do when the camera is pointed at her - such a little poser!

 What costumes have you worn this year? Do you make costumes for your little ones if you have 'em?

Tuesday, 29 November 2016

Throwback to summer - Cottage life at Rievaulx

Possibly my favourite picture of me ever...
With winter really coming in now and the darker nights and colder days taking over I started thinking back to summer. Not the summer just gone, as that was filled with so much craziness it's a bit of a blur, what with all the... erm... baby, but the summer before that. The one that was lovely and calm. The one where I could fit into all of my pretty dresses.

I was between one teaching job and another on summer holidays and I was staying with my parents while I sorted things out and moved onto my new place. As a little treat they had booked a cottage at the tiny area of Rievaulx in North Yorkshire. I went to visit with them there with my husband.

I always thought thatched cottages were cute, but a bit weird and I never really believed they would keep you warm and rain free. Buy it turns out they do as we had a torrential thunder storm while we were there and we were still mega cosy!
Because of its cuteness couldn't resist a few shots of me in my lovely kitty dress. I've posted about this dressbefore but it looks so grand with the cottage I felt like sharing. It it's the lily of the valley dress which was such a staple of my wardrobe. I've had this dress for about 3 years I think and I wore if so often. I still think its lasting well, even if I can't quite fit into it riiiiight now.

That is Rievaulx Abbey in the background. The view from the cottage was amazing! And of course being an old village it had a lovely traditional red phonebox!

Have you ever stayed in a cottage? I find I end up loving the cute cottage country life while I visit but I do miss easy access to good shopping.

Dress: Vivien of Holloway
Shoes: Clarks
Belt: Primark (stay classy!)

Friday, 18 November 2016

Joules Coast waterproof coat - my new go to for rainy days

I'm not quiet sure where this year is going, it seems like it was Christmas only a few minutes ago not nearly a whole year! I must say I feel pretty disorganised about the whole thing and it doesn't help that as soon as Halloween is out of the way all the Christmas adverts start and at the chocolaty coins and yule logs start to appear. 

Anywho, what I'm trying to say is that were well into our journey through autumn and gosh has the weather changed.

I live right on the coast in Northumberland and it is amazing to be able to get up and see the sea straight in front of us it's true the northern weather can get a bit wild (not that I'd ever like to admit it to my southern friends hehe). As I knew I'd be walking around a lot with either a pram or a baby strapped to me I decided quickly after Elizabeth was born I had to get a really good water proof coat. It's quite difficult to hold an umbrella while pushing a pram so I wanted one that was really weather proof. Wind and rain.

After some thinking I knew I wanted one that was suitable for summer, able to be packed up in the bottom of a changing bag just in case and was also suitable for layering up in winter. There are quite a lot of cheaper plastic PVC coats but I wanted something breathable too so I figured I'd need to pay fair money.

In the end I decided on a fisherman style Coast jacket from Joules as I know their stuff is good quality. It was so hard to choose a colour though - I really did want to get a traditional yellow one as I love that fisherman look but I just didn't think yellow would go with enough of my things (not that this is true). In the end I went with the French Navy as I thought that was more easy to match to outfits.

I ordered my blue Coast coat and it arrived promptly. I wore it of and on throughout August and September but it has really come into it's own as we've moved through October and into November (you can see it here). It was so perfect for summer and it was light and easy to pack away just like I wanted. However I have been wearing it a lot layered over cardigans and dresses so I could keep warm and dry.

 I've always been a little dubious about waterproof clothing but I recently wore it in a very heavy downpour and I can say for sure that it is excellent at keeping you dry.

I love the details of the coat, the fact that the pockets are waterproof too and there are ties that you can easily adjust to keep the hood up. And, oh my gosh, that stripey lining is so classic!

The only problem I have found with this coat is that the box shape that is traditional with this coat is a little snug over the mum tum. I can fasten it up but as a lady that has always been a little round in that area it can be a little bit of a challenge. But it won't take long for that to sort itself out.

In truth although I paid around £75 for the coat (I got it from an official Joules stockist) I have easily got my monies worth because I have worn it so many times. It's not the most vintage looking thing but this style is a classic and the clashing colours you can buy it in can be more of a statement piece. I certainly haven't had any trouble wearing it with lovely retro style dresses. The exact jacket I got is now sold out but they have a variation on it every season so it will always be easy to get your hands on one.

Outfit Details:
Coat: Joules Coast in French Navy, Cardigan: Lindy Bop, Dress: Vivien of Holloway Kitty, Shoes: Office

Do you have any coats that are suitable for a wet and rainy day?

Wednesday, 9 November 2016

A quiet Halloween hiking with my little pumpkin in Northumberland

Halloween had always been a big deal for me. I've always gone somewhere or done something, whether that be a visit to a comic convention or a night out or a gathering at a friends. But I'm living a quieter life at the moment with the (not so) new baby so this year was a quieter affair.

My parents had booked a holiday cottage for Halloween in Craster, a tiny village on the Northumberland coast. From the cottage you could see Dunstanburgh castle on the hill nearby and there was a lovely cool calm about the place - so relaxing!

We went out for several walks along the coast. When it comes to walking and hiking I'm a bit of a weirdo. Most people wear special trousers and fleeces etc. but I've always been adamant that I can wear a dress. I still have a waterproof coat and a good study pair of boots but if I can't wear a dress, it's not worth doing ;)

Once of my current staples is the Audrey dress by Lindy Bop. The Audrey is one of their more iconic designs and the two I currently wear are made from a I'm thick cotton broadcloth with autumnal florals, one in blue, one in black. What is even better I got them in the crazy summer sale this year so they were only £9 each (they are still on sale in a few small sizes). They have definitely paid for themselves 10 times over as I wear them both all the time! I am also wearing them with a Lindy Bop cardigan which is doing okay, but not fairing half as well at the dresses.

We took the little madam for a walk in her ergobaby carrier which is somehow still comfy after several miles even with a 18lb baby like mine. She was so interested in everything around it was fascinating to watch her watching everything else.

We repeated the walk a few days later and I had the push chair, an interesting experience I'll say, and that is when my mum took that amazing silhouette photograph heading this post. The Sun was just getting low in the sky and the light was so perfect.

This is the most relaxed I've ever spent a Halloween but I must say I rather enjoyed it.

Thursday, 27 October 2016

Parent and Child/Mummy and Baby costumes for Halloween or Fancy Dress

Okay so with Halloween only a few days away I have started thinking about costumes again and it occurred to me that this year I have a whole new person I can dress in a costume. Is it terrible that I am really excited to dress my little bundle in all kinds of matching outfits with me? Probably...
I don't have super exciting plans, by that I mean I'm not going to any parties, as I'm away with my family staying in a little cottage in rural Northumberland. We are going to spend the evening playing games and watching movies. However, that doesn't mean that I won't have a silly outfit to wear. I'm also going to North East Comic Con in November so I will be cosplaying there with the little 'un so I have spent far more minutes of the last few weeks thinking about costumes than I really care to admit.
A few years ago I did posts on science themed costumes and couples costumes, so this got me thinking, what were good options for fancy dress if you have a baby or toddler? Could they be at all adapted for family costumes?

Star Wars
By far the most popular choice I seemed to encounter was for the Star Wars fans. Most people who travel with a youngling tend to have a baby/toddler carrier so an interesting option is to pop a Yoda hat on your baba and you can dress as your own character. In theory it should be Luke in his training outfit, but if you want to be someone else then why not! I've also seen really cute baby crochet Leia buns so your baby could be Leia too!
Star Wars is really easy to adapt into a family theme as there are so many interesting and unique characters to choose from.
Image property of Star Wars and Disney

One of my favourite ideas, probably because I've loved labyrinth since I was a very young child. Buuuuuut I would be lying if I said I didn't have a bit of a Sarah phase in my teen years. This would be a great costume of you are short for time or cash, you simply need a stripy sleep suit for your little one and a pair of jeans, baggy shirt and waistcoat that could easily be find in vintage shops or on ebay. If you wanted to step up your game to you could also have ago at a Jareth outfit or even Sarah's crazy prom dress.
Image from Labyrinth Wiki

They are the modern stone age family after all. I've seen some okay looking Flintstones costumes online (although not in real life) so you could be Fred, Wilma, Barney or Betty and your little one could be Pebbles or BamBam. I also feel this would make an excellent vintage costume instead with a blue or while 50s/60s dress and a cute baby romper, although this would be a little bit harder to source.
Image from Flintstones Wikia
If you're wanting to do something a bit different (but not that different) you could go for Nintendo characters. With Mario Kart 8 having lots of baby characters it would be very easy to dress your little one as a baby Mario or Luigi with dungarees and a coloured t shirt or vest. Luckily it it's really easy to find grown up dungarees at the moment too so it would be easy to dress up as either of these too. You can also go a bit more hard core too if you wanted to make our buy a princess dress.
I've seen some really cool looking Pikmin hats on etsy too so you could always have your baba as a little Pikmin.
With Pokemon Go being so popular a duo of Ash and Pikachu could be an option too and since there are nearly 1000 pokemon now so you have rather a lot of choice.
Image from Mario Kart 8
DC and Marvel are on fire at the moment so there are tonnes of ready made baby and children's outfits out there. Places like Mothercare do lovely little baby onesies and it could be a quick and easy outfit for baba and there are so many adult superhero fancy dress costumes that you won't have trouble finding something to match.
Image from Pinterest
In a similar vein to the super hero option the Disney store (and others) have loads of baby costumes and they have even more for little girls and boys so you are completely spoilt for choice! While it is tricky to find a good quality adult Disney costume they do exist and you could always do a disneybound type casual costume if its easier.
Some of my favourite examples at the moment - Donald/Micky/Minnie, Belle, Snow White and other Princesses
Image from Disney Store UK

There are just too many to choose from!! Hopefully I've given you some inspiration - Happy Halloween!

Wednesday, 19 October 2016

Where the heck have I been?

No, seriously, its been 15 months and I have really missed keeping my blog but there have been so many changes in my life it was suddenly hard to keep up!

I moved across the country (again!), started a new job, worked my butt off, went through a total body transformation and had a baby. A year in life can make a big difference.
My little madam, although I feel it's unfair to call her that as she's pretty mellow actually, is now four months old and it's impossible to imagine life without her. I am currently on maternity leave and enjoying learning as much as I can about being a mum. So far this time has been a mixture of joy, frustration, moments of nothing much and ones of complete excitement, but I realised that I wasn't doing a very good job at keeping a record of the things I'd been doing, something this blog was originally started for.

I can't believe it has taken 4 months of time off with my daughter before it became clear to me that I needed to restore my creative outlet.

I've still been my usual self while I wasn't updating, dressing in my special way, eating lots of food, sewing and faffing about with my hair, although I must admit my costuming has been limited by the baby bump. I might do a throwback post from time to time to try and ensure that the time is not lost but I don't think I'll be doing very many of those.

So I'm back, I'll still be posting the usual but with some added baby nonsense every now and again (note the new button in the side bar).

I also might occasionally write about my efforts to shift this baby weight. I have a whole rail of clothing I can't wear at the moment so I'll post with joy as I am able to get back into things - or occasionally into things for the first time! Regaining my self-esteem is going to a big challenge and part of the reason I hadn't posted very much is that I was feeling pretty low about myself. But lets be positive - this body made a life - I need to take care of it and start loving it a little more.

I want to start by sharing one of my favourite dresses that I wore during my pregnancy.

Around 28 weeks

At 38 weeks
I acquired this dress from a lady in a Vivien of Holloway group and she sold it to me second hand. It was a size bigger than my usual so it could accommodate the bump.

It is a Runaround Sue dress in a black strawberry print. It was out some time ago and was something that I missed out on so I was really glad to pick up one second hand as I've wanted this design for some time. That is one thing I love about Vivien of Holloway the buy, share, swap element of dress collecting is great fun. 
To give you an idea about the changes in my body I am still wearing this dress now and thank goodness it's so comfortable and flattering that even with 15 extra lbs.

Aaaaaand finally here is me and my little munchkin. I won't be posting many pictures of her because this is my blog after all, not hers, but she is such a big part of my life now I felt I had to share at least one.

 See you again for more adventures soon!

Thursday, 30 July 2015

It's a nice day, to go to a wedding in a Vivien of Holloway Kitty dress

‘Tis the season for weddings! Yey! Who doesn’t love a wedding? I adore getting dressed up for events and an excuse to buy a nice new dress is always appreciated.

This was the first wedding I have been to since my own wedding so it was really fun to see it all from the other side of things.

As it was a summer wedding I decided to go with something light and floral and luckily for me Vivien of Holloway had just put a new Kitty dress on their site in peach and royal blue florals.

I have ranted and raved about the Kitty dress so many times I’m sure you don’t need me to tell you how wonderful it is again. But if you had any doubt, it is amazing. It is still my favourite design of their dresses by a very long way. It's just soooo flattering!

Because of the dress’s blue tones I wore the dress with a blue light cardigan and a pair of blue highwoods from Lotta from Stockholm. I felt they were the perfect summer accessories.

I made a particular effort when pin curling my hair I let them dry and set for even longer than usual and gave them a very thorough brushout. I was really very pleased with the result, it ended up being far smoother and sleeker than usual. I only wish I knew what I did differently this time that lead to the lovely smooth curls. But sometimes you just need a bit of luck with hair.

Outfit Details
Dress: Vivien of Holloway
Cardigan: Monsoon
Shoes: Lotta from Stockholm
Belt: Vintage

What is your dream wedding guest outfit?

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