baby · home

Tidy Home, Tidy Mind – IKEA Trofast hack

Hi All!

So Christmas has one again came and gone and the only thing that’s left is a slowly decreasing stack of biscuits and chocolates and a ton of new toys that need to find a home. We knew that we would need some new toy storage because we previously just had two large plastic boxes in the corner and some bigger items to the side. With us getting her a play kitchen this year and family getting her a range of new toys both big and small we knew we needed to look at what storage we had and make some changes.

I have always been a fan of IKEA storage and we have IKEA Kallax systems in both Eleanor’s bedroom and my office and they have served us well. We considered getting another Kallax system but one problem with her old storage is that smaller toys fell to the bottom where she couldn’t reach and forgot about them and the bigger ones sat at the top. This meant that many of her toys were forgotten about and unused.

I then looked at the IKEA Trofast systems and thought this could be a great solution to our toy troubles as you can purchase different sized storage trays and customise it to your needs. You can also buy different colours to match the room. This was definitely the best fit for our needs and so we planned to head up to IKEA. Before we went to IKEA I had a sort through Eleanors toys, rehomed anything that was broken, unused or missing pieces and just kept what she loves/plays with. I was quite brutal with it but I needed to be as she had so much new stuff.

My cousin kindly offered to watch Eleanor and even have her overnight the night before and we headed up on a Saturday. IKEA is around a 45/50 minute drive and we jumped in the qashqui bright and early and managed to get there for around 10:15 which was great as it wasn’t super busy. We navigated our way around IKEA and found the Trofast we wanted which was the pine 3×3 and the pine mini 2×3 to go on the wall above. We also wanted to do an “IKEA hack” and bought spice racks to screw to the sides to house books as welll as a huge roll of paper and two rails – one to hold it and one to feed the paper through to keep it neat.

For the boxes we got clear mini boxes, then 3 small clear drawers and 3 orange medium drawers. These have worked so well and all her toys are split into categories so she knows exactly where everything is.

When we got home we quickly assembled the Trofast which were very easy to put together and then painted them with the same grey paint which we have on the walls. The paint has a matte/chalky finish on the wood and has tied them into the room beautifully and made them look more luxury. We then redecorated and finally installed our Trofast system onto the wall. We screwed on the spice racks which were also painted and added the paper roll and fed it through a second metal bar to keep it from rolling loose.

This is the finished product and honestly I couldn’t be more pleased with it! Not only does it look really nice in our living room and go well with the decor, it works so well for Eleanor and she loves it. It’s so easy to scoop everything up on a night and hide it away ready for the next day. Eleanor has really been loving the drawing table part and spends hours creating masterpieces and forcing me and Adam to go over and draw with her. She pulls us a tiny chair up from her little table and insists that we join her and make some artwork.

We have had a ton of compliments from friends and family and it’s a huge conversation point with visitors who come into our home. I love that Eleanor has her own space in the room and it almost makes the room have “zones” so that it’s not a complete and utter child explosion. I do think it’s good for my mental health to be able to relax and with the toys contained on a night me and Adam are able to have time that feels more adult and really switch off and just enjoy spending time together without bumping into something loud and plastic.

I always love a good trip to IKEA and my house is pretty much full of IKEA furniture, a lot of which has been painted/changed in some way. It has stood the test of time and still looks great. Cheap doesn’t always mean low quality and you can get some really pretty things from there. Plus even if you don’t end up getting something big IKEA is always a fun day out. I always end up with a ton of candles, some random kitchenware that I probably don’t need and leave with some extremely low alcohol ciders that taste of apple juice and possibly a hot-dog.

I hope this has inspired you to really think about how you can take a piece of furniture and make it work for you. I couldn’t be without Eleanor’s little toy station now and really love how it looks in our room. Now it’s time for the next project!

Thanks for reading!
Hannah x

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home · personal

New Year New Living Room! Getting Geometric Whilst Redecorating.

Hi All!

When I first got together with Adam I thought “Great, he’s a painter and decorator – I’ll never have a boring house!”. I mean he did have some other great features too but that was definitely something that won him a few brownie points. Little did I know that because he does it all day, decorating is NOT something he wants to do in his spare time. Pretty much I have to wait, nag, then wait some more for Adam to do some DIY around the house and it is always on his terms.

When we moved into our current home almost two years ago we rushed to pick wallpapers and I slowly went off what we had in the living room. It was pretty, but it was only on the chimney breast and it didn’t have a lot of impact. I wanted something a bit more “modern” that would be a feature point in the room.

Earlier in the year Adam did a job for a friend and worked up at the Graham & Brown shop in Dalton Park. Afterwards he took me up there for a day out and I fell in love with a geometric white/grey/orange wallpaper called “Tarek”. I ordered it a few months after and sadly it sat in the box for many months after that and just after Christmas it was finally time for it to be put up.

We actually got the paper up in a few hours and it went up quite easily. We peeled off the old paper in full strips to stop it coming through the new paper and got to work. The match wasn’t too bad and we did the chimney breast and the rest of the wall in just over 2 rolls.

We also painted the stair wall at the same time in the same grey as the living room. Our stairs are in the living room and the wall was previously painted orange but we grew to dislike it. After painting it grey it now seems so much lighter and airy and has really opened up the space.

We have photo frames going up our stairs and also found this macrame wall hanging from Matalan for only £3. It hangs on the small patch of a wall between my bathroom and window and just adds something interesting to my stair landing. It also ties in (get it?) with the geometric/triangle theme.

  

I then went onto eBay and bought this copper wire geometric lampshade…

..and a matching lamp.

I have been obsessed with triangle shelves for quite a while now and knew I definitely wanted some for the room. I again found some on eBay but I’m not going to link them because honestly up close they’re not the greatest. I get that they’re reclaimed wood but there is quite a lot of holes and craters in them and they feel quite rough. I put our lightbox on one, a frame I made for Adam for Fathers Day on the second and a mini cactus from Primark with a geometric tealight holder on the third.

The last decoration I bought is this copper geometric decorative piece with a faux cactus inside. It sits on my shoe cupboard and I love it! I picked this up from Primark but I’ve seen them in New Look and a few other places.

I’m really pleased with my living room. It HAS been a long time coming but now it’s finished it’s beautiful. It’s a great mix of child friendly space as well as a real grown up adult room  and is perfect for just relaxing after a long day. I love to have guests over and really enjoy having my home looking beautiful and I feel like we have really achieved this with what we have chosen. This was the last room we had to do though and I am slightly sad that we don’t have anywhere else to decorate. I’m addicted!

Let me know what you think of our choices!
Thanks for reading,
Hannah x

home · personal · review

Photowall* Fab Fat Mama Reviews.

Hi all!

Some of you may know that I absolutely love home decor and doing up houses. I love to express my personal style over my home by putting my stamp on it and I tend to go for bold colours and prints against a backdrop of grey. I’m so obsessed with grey, I literally have it in every room in my house. The only room that is grey free is the bathroom which was tiled before we moved in – however we bought grey towels.

I’m always looking for ways to add to my home and to make it more personal to us, and so I was super pleased when the lovely Christine from Photowall got in touch and offered me either wallpaper of my choice or a canvas.

I’m not going to lie, It took me quite a long time to decide what to get. I was pretty sad that I’d just bought wallpaper to re-do our living room and here I was hit with loads of amazing choices that I could of had but I got over it when I saw the canvas selection.

I ended up choosing a canvas because I love having images of my family around the house and I didn’t really have an up to date one. As we had just been on holiday it seemed the perfect chance to get one of our images blown up so we could keep the memory going.

I was pleasantly surprised how easy it was to actually order the canvas and the number of different custom sizes you could choose from. It’s not in regimented sizes, you can pretty much choose what you want and you can crop parts from your image and move your selection around.

I chose one of the smaller sizes available, put the crop selection to the part of the image I wanted and ordered the canvas as well as a D I Y kit to make it at home.

My canvas came pretty speedily in a long box. I knew there was going to be some building involved and so I set everything out ready to go!

I rolled out the canvas and was really shocked at how good the quality was as I’d sent quite a bad image and thought it might not come out so great. I set this on the table to straighten out whilst I unpacked the rest of the pieces.

The D I Y kit contained some side pieces which had been pre-taped, some metal brackets and some plastic ended screws. This meant that you didn’t actually need any physical tools to put together the canvas which I thought was a really great idea.

I consulted the instructions and decided to just go for it. It seemed pretty straight forward to put together and the instructions were very helpful.

I got the wooden pieces on pretty easily. I made sure to leave a lip each side with the canvas and rolled it round the corner of the wood which it shows on the instructions. This helped to line up the wood and the bits of tape stuck together when the wood rolled in. I put the wood on the edges of the canvas and once all 4 pieces were on it was time to roll them in together and meet the corners.

Once rolled in, they were secured together using the metal brackets and screws. I found the easiest way to do this was to only screw in a little bit so there was some flexibility and then once all the screws were in to then tighten them. I managed to do this myself and finally the canvas was together.

I always knew where I wanted to put the canvas, which was at the top of my stairs on a patch of wall with nothing much around it. I didn’t actually mount it as we’re waiting to re-paint the wall but I actually like it here on the top of the drawers. It puts a smile on my face every morning when I step out of my bedroom and I’ve had so many compliments on it so far.

I would definitely use Photowall again in the future as their delivery was so quick and the product is really good quality. I would love to try their personalised wallpaper which I think sounds amazing and could be a great way to get a really unique look for your home. I can imagine scanning in Eleanors artwork when she’s older and decorating a play room with it – that would be so cool and cute!

If you would like to try Photowall they’ve got a black friday deal on for the next couple of days. You can use the code blackfriday17 for 25% off!

Thank you so much to Photowall for gifting me the canvas. As much as I was given the item for free, the words in this review are all my own and they are my own opinions.

Thanks for reading!

Hannah xx

baby · home · parenting · plus size · Uncategorized

Becoming “Mummy” – My plus size pregnancy story.

 `Hi all!

Two months ago my little girl Eleanor turned one years old. Those who have followed me for a long time will be just as shocked as I am how quickly the time seems to of flown by. It seems like just yesterday it was just me and Adam in our flat in Fairfield, and now its me Adam & Eleanor in our big family home in Stockton (with a quick detour along the way to an awful streethouse..)

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I don’t think I’ve ever really told the story of how Eleanor “came to be”, and I always get asked online by other plus sized women how I managed to get pregnant and really I had no secret. I only had unprotected sex once and fell pregnant. Me and Adam had had a pretty average Christmas but both felt like something was missing. After a long chat on Christmas Day we decided that when we came back from our little getaway to Edinburgh we were going to try for a baby. At the end of January we stopped using any contraceptives and it happened first time we tried (if the dates are correct!). I’m not sure how Eleanor managed to cling on for those first days because I had an MRI scan whilst not knowing I was pregnant and also went to an event in London where I wore a tightly bound corset all day and drank!

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I found out I was pregnant quite quickly. I thought I was having the period from hell and I remember being at the gym about to go swimming and my boobs were like rocks and so I had to wear a crop top in the water rather then a bikini top because they were so sore. I remember swimming along with my nipples like marbles and the freezing cold swimming pool just made them worse!

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The thing that really made me realise I was pregnant was my sense of smell went crazy. I’ve never liked coffee/the smell of coffee before and it was just getting worse and worse to the point of it making it unbearable. What really pushed me over the edge and prompted me to wonder if I was pregnant was somebody at work was cooking popcorn which is usually one of my favourite snacks but at this time I couldn’t stand the smell at all.

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My first test actually came back negative, but my second had a very faint positive line and my third was really dark and so I knew for sure I was pregnant. I rang my doctors straight away to book in for a blood test and had it confirmed that I was pregnant that same week. Next I had to have my “booking” appointment with the midwife which was my first proper appointment.

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With me being a student when I moved in with Adam in the flat, I never ever swapped doctors and so my appointments were always still at my doctors near my mums. My first appointment was a no show, then she turned up randomly 2 days later but I of course wasn’t there (and was working!). Finally we rearranged for the Friday and she finally showed up…nearly 2 hours late. As midwives over my pregnancy went. they were very hit and miss. Unfortunately she wasn’t one of the good ones and she banged on for over an hour about how breast is best and how breastfed children have higher IQ’s and achieve more.  She also went on to tell me that women should be the one to feed a baby so the baby associates feeding with her mum and how it certainly should not be  getting fed by the father. Needless to say – there was much eye rolling on my part.

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Apart from morning sickness, most of my pregnancy went swimmingly and sailed by. We found out we were having a girl, agonised over names but settled on Eleanor – which we chose after I read out the name and Adam started singing a Biffy Clyro song he loved – and started buying clothes second hand off eBay. We also moved house when I was around 4 months pregnant so that we were close to family and in a “proper” house. We soon regretted this decision as the house was just a damp mess which ended up full of various problems such as holes in the floorboards in the stairs, crooked tiled in the kitchen which we stubbed our toes on, a pipe in the bath was held together with a rag, the bath wasn’t draining properly which made our yard stink etc etc! We ended up moving out when Eleanor was 5-6 months old because the damp was consuming the house and making her ill and the house was going to have to get half ripped out to fix!

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I said my pregnancy mostly went swimmingly, but I did have a few hiccups along the way. When we went for our gender scan, Eleanor would not co-operate at all and kept wrapping her legs around the cord so we couldn’t see what gender she was! The poor nurse tried for over a half hour and had me in allsorts of positions. Finally, on her last attempt she managed to see as Eleanor moved that she was going to be a girl. I was so relieved that we got to find out – I cried. I also found myself in hospital on a few occasions, once to a bleed, once due to a fall, once due to fake contractions (where after a few test I found out I had group b strep which I was glad I found because it can be problematic if undiscovered) and once due to a fall.

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I ended up having a week long stay in hospital after going in with stomach pains which I feared might be pre-eclampsia. I went in and due to the sound of my breathing they were convinced I had blood clots in my lungs which could of put the babies and my life at risk. In one day, I had an ECG, x ray, nuclear x ray, a camera down my nose, an ultrasound, various blood tests, urine tests, half hourly blood pressure tests and more. I was exhausted and just wanted to go home. I moved wards 8 times during my stay, including being put on the labour ward which was terrifying and spending a night in intensive care which was even more terrifying and extremely uncomfortable. They have these beds which constantly move to stop bed sores as people spend so much time there. I HATED it there and couldn’t wait to leave. They wouldn’t even let me go to the toilet alone and begged me to use a bed pan. No.

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I was finally allowed back home after being diagnosed with sleep apnea and given the all clear about my lungs. I did get plenty of scaremongering  chats about my weight which ruined my pregnancy a little if I’m honest. Nobody would take the time to talk to me and ask what i’ve been doing or would check the records to see I’d actually been losing weight – I just got a lecture about dying young or harming my baby.

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My pregnancy went on and so did my cravings. Thankfully I didn’t crave anything “too” wild – apart from loving the smell of ice and crunching it and the smell of old dusty boxes. I craved normal things like bags of tangerines, grapes, vol-au-vents, jacket potatoes, tuna and sweetcorn pasta. I even started liking things I wasn’t a fan of originally such as pizza, orange fanta, trifle, cheesecake and chicken – strangely all the things that Adam absolutely loves.

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By the end of my pregnancy I was pretty much crippled with SPD and ended up using a wheelchair to get out of the house which was awful. So many places are so unsuitable (I got stuck in the middle of the road in Manchester) and people truly see you as a second class citizen it was disgusting the way people shoved in front of me or tutted at me or just gave me filthy looks. If poor Adam wasn’t so kind as to push me round places, I wouldn’t of gotten out at all. I was pretty miserable with it and climbing our stairs 5-6-7 times a night to pee was killing me. I also developed gestational diabetes triggered by steroids I was given in the hospital so I was injecting insulin my last few weeks. This concerned the doctors who thought my baby would grow to be huge and wanted to give me a c-section at 37 weeks.

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As you can imagine, I wasn’t best pleased by this as I wanted to go naturally. They told me I’d be too tired to push and would probably end up needing a c-section anyway so it was best just to choose to have one. They set up the surgery date for Tuesday 13th October (which I pleaded with them for as 13th is superstitious) but they wouldn’t change it.

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A few days before I was due to go in and have Eleanor, I had to go for my pre assessment where we’d chat about a few things and talk about the c-section. When I got there, I was super anxious and as a result of this – my blood pressure was sky high. After the high reading, they refused to let me go home and said I had to stay in until she was coming which sucked as it was my cousins 21st at the weekend and I still wanted to do some bits at home etc. I finally accepted that I had to stay after more scaremongering chats about me having a fit and after having to have the worst injection in my leg for Eleanors lungs to develop – I got settled in my side room. I’d been there since 11am and got settled by 9PM – yet between all this time I hadn’t even been offered a glass of water or anything to eat.  By Sunday I was bored, fed up and pissed off at the lack of food. Some how they kept missing me on the lunch runs or people would be in the room when orders were taken so I ended up with what was leftover or more often – nothing. GREAT way to treat a pregnant woman. However, nothing pissed me off more than a doctor popping in on sunday and asking why I was still there and that I had been allowed to go home for the weekend. I was livid!

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The only good part about hospital was Adam. He really looked after me and made sure I got out and about and brought me food to eat and fresh PJ’s and drinks etc. He tried his hardest to make it a positive experience for me and spent as much time as he could at the hospital with me. He even painted my pump for me in my little en-suite bathroom because it was on my “bump bucket list”.

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Soon it rolled round to tuesday and it was time to go down to theatre to have my little girl. I was so scared and nervous but also so excited to meet her and finally not be pregnant any longer!

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My “birth story” was quite traumatic so I’m going to write about this in another post so keep an eye out for it!

Hannah x

baby · fashion · food · home · Uncategorized

Putting on a party! Mums 50s 50th.

Hi all!

As my mum was about to turn 50 years old we decide to throw a party for her. With my mum being a fan vintage dresses and afternoon tea it seemed fitting that we threw her a vintage tea party. We, or rather I decided to do the decoration ourselves so that I could make them exactly what we wanted but also to save a lot of money.

Venue

We decided on a local venue called the Normanby pub. As this was not the most up-to-date venue decoration wise, I knew that it was going to take quite a lot of imagination and lots of decorations. The first thing that I made was over 100metres of bunting to transform the walls. I used fat quarters which I bought on sale at hobby craft as well as some bits I already had in my craft drawers For speed and to conserve fabric, rather than sewing two pieces of fabric together and bagging it out I just used one piece and pinked the edges. Pinking the edges is great because it stops any fraying and it also looks very cute and kitsch.

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I also made  paper bunting from floral craft paper by drawing around a foam heart stencil and cutting it out with my pinking shears. I then threaded all of the bunting together with twine.

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I love paper bunting because it is so quick to make and looks beautiful because of all the patterns. It can also be made into any shape and is quick to cut out if you use a stencil.

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For centre pieces I decided that we would have jars of mini flowers as my mum really loves flowers. At first I was going to collect different sized jars but then we decided to purchase some from eBay which were hexagonal and really cute.

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To decorate them, I wrapped them with a piece of hessian and lace and finished them with a twine bow and hot glued it into place.

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Next up was filling the jars. Originally, my mums boyfriend was growing the flowers but unfortunately there was an infestation of caterpillars at his allotment and we lost all the flowers. So, for plan B me and my cousin Carley went to a few Aldi’s to pick up flowers. I can’t recommend Aldi enough for flowers – there’s a great selection of really cheap but beautiful flowers.

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We filled Carleys boot with flowers and took them back to mine. Thankfully Eleanor was out for the day because making 28 bouquets was hard enough without having a baby getting involved too! After trimming, de-leafing and separating flowers, I set about putting them into the mini bouquets. I used a good selection of different flowers in a variety of colours so they looked really kitsch.

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I tied the bunches with twine and sat them in the jars. We later filled these with water beads. We also used the water beads to fill bowls which we lit from the bottom with waterproof LED candles and floated flowers on top of. We put the bowls and jars of flowers in the middle of the tables on top of patterned doilies and scattered handmade heart shaped confetti -which I made from the paper scraps left over from the paper bunting cut out with a heart puncher – around them.

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We thought about photographers for the party and thought a photo booth might be fun way to get some great snaps. With hiring one being so expensive – again we decided to go down the D I Y route. I raided eBay, a few pound shops and the wardrobes of friends and family and ended up with two boxes of props to work with. My cousin Craig really excelled with the photo booth and built a fully light up fake 50’s style jukebox to step inside and take photos in. This was a huge hit at the party and we got some great snaps inside.

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Perhaps the hardest thing to find for the party was my mums dress. My mum can be quite picky when it comes to her clothing and with it being her 50th she wanted to make sure she looked extra special. With it being a fifties party, choices were limited and mostly online. My mum and I searched through the online offerings and my mum chose a dress, however when it arrived it just wasn’t like the picture and just wasn’t right – online shopping is always a risk! We were arranging to go away for the day to dress search somewhere bigger, when I popped into an alternative shop by the off chance and noticed it had a good selection of vintage style dresses that I thought my mum would like. After a visit to the shop together, mum found her perfect dress (at a bargain price too) from Hell Bunny.

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I also looked online for dresses but couldn’t find anything that was special enough to spend money on when I have already had a wardrobe full of dresses and settled on a collectif dress I’d had a while.

I did however order Eleanor a new dress! I managed to grab one of Lindy Bop’s baby range of dresses in their mega sale for £5 and accessorised it with a cheap head wrap from ebay!

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To accessorise my dress, I got a pair of Mary Janes from New Look which were reduced to £7 but scanned through the tills at an amazing £1 and I managed to get a £32 for £6 in Topshop.

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As I knew we were going to be busy arranging and decorating the room, I booked for us to get our hair done at All Dolled Up in Normanby and our makeup done by Kim Blair MUA and was so glad that I had. We were both pleased with both services and felt super glamourising.img_1460

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My hair and makeup was still perfect when I headed to bed at half five the next morning which was a testament to how great of a job both ladies did. I’d definitely use both again!

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(I went to bed so late the sun was out!)

All our hard work was worth it and we had an absolutely fantastic night which developed into a great weekend as we had a family barbecue the next night. After another late night, we were all wiped out on Sunday – I think it took me all week to recover afterwards!

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I really enjoyed all the work that I put in to my mums party and the effort was definitely worth it as the party was a great success and enjoyed by all. It was so much fun getting dressed up and seeing all the costumes and effort that people had made – it really made it all come together and made for a really memorable night which is just what my mother deserved.
Hannah x

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fashion · home · plus size

I wear black on the outside.. – FabFatMama Reviews Style908!

Hi All!

As much as I love the big established brands who are pioneering the plus sized fashion movement – I’ve always got a soft spot for much smaller indie companies. I found one of these companies via Instagram in the form of Style 908! They gave me a follow and when I checked them out, I found they had really fashion forwards plus size clothing at really good prices. A lot of small PS brands tend to bump the prices right up but Style 908’s pricing is really great.

What’s nice to see is that it’s a young couple behind the brand, who know the struggles of being plus size with the lady owner being plus size herself. Their instagram is really down to earth and you always get a really personal reply which is what really attracted me to them in the first place. I like a brand who is honest and connects with their target audience and they do that without body snarking any other body types like a lot of brands tend to do.

I got talking to the brand and we agreed that I would review a piece from them. It took me days to decide what to order as I was torn between two dresses, but I put it to an Instagram vote and went with the majority who chose the Zip Tunic in Black which if I’m honest, isn’t something I’d usually order!

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I’m so glad I did though! Expecting the fabric to be cotton, I went for a size 26 but I didn’t need it – a 24 would of been fine. The dress isn’t cotton but is a lovely soft thin jersey which is so breathable in this weather. I first wore this dress on holiday and it was so comfy and cool to wear all night – despite being in a packed and very warm venue. I have to admit, I usually don’t like zip necklines and would of been put off by the side slits, but as soon as I slipped this on it just worked for me. The dress has a thin belt tie with detailing on the ends to pull it in which is really handy.

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It was great for a recent family dinner for Adam’s birthday because I could loosen the belt off slightly after birthday cake! The dress really is so  light and wearable, I wish I’d had it last year when I was pregnant because it would of been such a good maternity summer dress as it can be pulled in over a bump. Oh and at £15.99 – it’s such a bargain!

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This dress will definitely be worn over this summer as it is so easy to throw on and look great in and I’m so glad that I took the plunge and went out of my comfort zone and tried something new. I’m definitely going to try more things that I wouldn’t normally and already have my eye on  beautiful shirt dress.

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I think it would be lovely for a summers evening at a barbecue or even for a few drinks in the beer garden.

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If there’s anything that’s caught your eye, you can get a further 15% off their bargain prices by using code STYLE90815 at the checkout. I might be brave and order that shirt dress!

Hannah x

home · Uncategorized

From drab to fab – My office overhaul!

Hi all!

I have recently moved house and have been having the fun of doing all the rooms up to our taste. Having a three bedroom house with only one child meant that we had a spare box room. As I am a keen crafter/machinist I decided to take over the room as my craft room/office which will be useful when I start making baby clothing to sell! It’s good to have your own space and be able to leave work out and just close the door behind it.

The room was a mess when we first moved in. The walls had holes, there was a built in bed which was filled with rubbish, half a carpet and a badly boxed in staircase. This room initially became the dumping room whilst we sorted  the more important rooms out and so it got put on the back burner for a few weeks; however once we got the ball rolling with the room it came together pretty quickly.

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The first thing we had to do was remove the bed. The room is pretty tiny so it had previously been used as a child’s room with a bed built into the space. We removed the bed which came out in small chunks and unfortunately couldn’t be salvaged and given to somebody else like we’d hoped.

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When we removed the bed we found out that only half of the room had been carpeted and so we would have to think of something to do with the floor such as a new carpet, laminate or stripping back the floorboards. We also found a ton of old lego, toys, rubbish and general dirt. I got the lovely job of cleaning this up!

Once the bed was ripped out it left a huge hole in the wood that was boxing in the stairs. Adam decided he was going to rip the rest out and rebuild it so that it looked better and was bigger so I could use the area as a built in pattern cutting table/place for storage.

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Next, we decorated. I have an obsession with flamingos and knew I wanted flamingo wallpaper. I looked at a few different styles but settled on this amazing collaged flamingo blown vinyl paper by Albany from Wallpaper Direct. The Flamingos have all sorts of different peach, pink, grey and black tones running through the paper and it’s so gorgeous.

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I made the decision to just wallpaper one wall as it is such a busy pattern. The other walls we painted in a deep grey in a matte finish called Storm Cloud. I’m a huge fan of grey, I think it always looks really modern and always sets off other colours well. I have grey in almost every room in my house in various different shades to support the feature walls. I think grey looks nicer and Adam paints magnolia/white every day at work so wanted to steer away from those colours!

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The final really cosmetic decision to make was what to do with the floor. I was keen to sand and paint the floorboards but Adam wasn’t as keen on this idea as some of the floorboards were uneven/gappy, however they were fine after being sanded down and nailed in properly.

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Adam mixed the colour for the floor himself which is a very light grey and goes beautifully with the rest of the room. He made this from using white undercoat mixed with dark grey undercoat. Adam sanded down each floorboard, painted it and then sanded it again so it now has a super soft feeling to it and is lovely to walk on.

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I had most of the furniture for my office already but needed a few bits just to finish it off. I bought this chair from a massive warehouse charity shop called Daisy Chain which helps children and families affected by Autism. I paid £6 for this chair and at the time it was a pine colour. Adam found the paint in a bargain box in b & q for £6 and he upcycled the chair for me. He put around 3 coats on the chair and sanded it between coats and after. He finished the chair off by adding some felt pads to the bottom of the chair so that the floor won’t get marked.

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Another piece of furniture I bought from the charity shop was this vintage tea tray. I bought it for two reasons- one being that it’s beautiful, and one being that moveable storage is a great thing to have in such a small room. I’m using it to stack all my storage boxes and it’s working out great as I can have it right up against my desk, then put it back against the wall when I need space.InstagramCapture_f9a457af-a4dd-4cdb-947b-f1cfe2372325

These are my storage boxes. I recovered them in leftover wallpaper so that they would go with the room. I decided to do this after not being able to find anything at all online that I liked. It also saved me money not having to buy new ones! I’ll pop a tutorial on how to do these at a later date.

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I added some bits for decor such as this amazing flamingo light bought for me by my brothers lovely GF Verity!

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And a frame wall with a mix of photos, prints, handmade items and a few plaques.

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And here it is with my furniture in! My desk is of course from IKEA and has been with me since we moved into the flat in 2012! It was pretty cheap and has always been used as my sewing table so has taken quite a battering with pins/machines etc but it’s still in great quality. My record stand was actually built by Adam from some leftover spindles and offcuts of wood which he assembled together and then painted. I’ve always loved it – not only because it’s a super handy bit of furniture which fits records perfectly, but because it’s one of the first things Adam ever did/made for me and it reminds me of our early days.

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So that’s my office transformation! I think it’s a pretty dramatic change and I absolutely adore it. I just need a few finishing touches such as the right lamp shade and some touching up on the skirting boards, but i’m practically there! It’s so nice having my own little room I can keep all my crafts in and have to my taste. When you’re a mum you sometimes feel like you lose a bit of your identity and so it’s great that I can make sure I keep a little piece of myself.

Thanks for reading!

Hannah x