Something kinda wonderful

Something kinda wonderful | Sugarhill BoutiqueSomething kinda wonderful | Sugarhill Boutique Something kinda wonderful | Sugarhill BoutiqueSomething kinda wonderful | Sugarhill Boutique

Happy November! Sorry we’ve been a bit quiet for a couple of weeks, but as well as looking after our lovely little ladies, we’ve been plotting something kinda wonderful! Keep your eyes peeled here and on our social media (especially if you are Bristol based) as we are going to be trying our hands at something a little different. We will fill you in properly once everything has been finalised, we promise! Hoorah, very exciting stuff here at She and Hem HQ.

As we now live a little further away from each other, every time we meet up at the moment, we do seem to have lots of blog admin to discuss and outfits to shoot. Which is lovely but unfortunately we don’t always have our husbands/friends around to help us with the photography. Luckily, over the years we have learnt a few tricks of the trade and have finally lost our inhibitions when posing in public. Well, we’re not as awkward as we were a few years ago. We literally don’t have the time to act shy now, as normally we are en route to soft play or baby song time at the library. Mum life, eh?

When we met up to take these photos in the centre of Bristol recently, we not only tackled a broken tripod and an alfresco outfit change but also a rather chilly downpour! We kept on smiling, because after all this time we both still absolutely love being bloggers!

It seems very fitting to end the post with a great big thanks to one of our favourite brands Sugarhill Boutique for always reaching out to us. We blooming love you every season, but here are our current faves. Jo’s all about the Wonderful Sweatshirt* and Cloud Jumper* and I (Victoria) can not get enough of the red Wonderful Tee* and Hell Yeah Tee*! We’re pretty hyped to see what Sugarhill have up their sleeves for Christmas, it’s always amazing!

Something kinda wonderful | Sugarhill Boutique

Something kinda wonderful | Sugarhill Boutique

Something kinda wonderful | Sugarhill BoutiqueSomething kinda wonderful | Sugarhill Boutique

Something kinda wonderful | Sugarhill BoutiqueSomething kinda wonderful | Sugarhill Boutique

V&Jx

Saks Appeal | Win an Ultimate Vitamin Glow Facial

Last week Jo and I (Victoria) had the pleasure of meeting up at Saks Beauty in Bristol to sample a couple of their treatments and indulge in a spot of afternoon tea. Not a bad way to spend a grey Tuesday afternoon, we are sure you’ll agree. Saks is based at the bottom of Park Street, making it a super convenient rendezvous point for the two (sorry, four) of us now that we aren’t living in the same part of Bristol!

We had a great time taking it in turns to baby sit whilst the other was treated to some ‘me time’. Turns out, after several months of carrying our babies around, boy did our knots need untying! My massage was carried out by the lovely Donna, who actually gasped at the state of my poor back. A good excuse to go back for a few more visits.

After saying goodbye to our stresses and aching muscles, we caught up over a delicious spread of scones and cupcakes. Delightful! We proceeded to compare notes on our various post baby aches and pains, and Jo explained that she thought the Saks massage was even better than the one she’d had recently at the The Lido in Clifton. High praise indeed. If you fancy seeing for yourself, Saks are kindly offering half price massages to all new clients – just mention that She and Hem sent you!

Now, what you’ve all been waiting for, it’s competition time! Would you like to win an ultimate vitamin glow facial at Saks Beauty? Of course you would! It’s 60 minutes of pure bliss. Simply enter below and we’ll keep our fingers crossed for you!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

V&J

 

 

Nursery Inspiration with Festive Lights

Nursery Inspiration | She and Hem | Festive LightsNursery Inspiration | She and Hem | Festive LightsNursery Inspiration | She and Hem | Festive Lights

Nursery Inspiration | She and Hem | Festive Lights

The girls are growing up so fast! It’s so much fun seeing them turn into little mischievous girls and they are starting to really adore spending time together. They are both currently still sleeping in with Mum and Dad but it won’t be long now until they are in their own rooms! We are therefore both having a lot of fun collecting nursery bits and setting up spaces that they will love. 

After sourcing furniture, curtains and all that sort of jazz, we were on the hunt for decorations! Never ones to shy away from novelty lighting, these colour changing unicorn fairy lights* from Festive Lights were perfect! The girls are fascinated by them as they slowly change colour to showcase a selection of baby friendly soft shades. Fairy lights are such a cheap and easy way to add a bit of character to a space and hopefully they will help make the transition into their own rooms that little bit nicer. Plus, unicorns are pretty great! Naturally, being babies, they wanted to eat the unicorns (!!!) so we had to come up with ways to keep them safely out the way. Thankfully they are battery operated so no nasty mains to worry about (phew) so Jo will be pinning hers to the top of her dollshouse-shaped bookcase and Victoria has a cunning plan to display hers in a clear vase that can be stored out of reach!

Nursery Inspiration | She and Hem | Festive Lights

Nursery Inspiration | She and Hem | Festive Lights

Nursery Inspiration | She and Hem | Festive Lights

Don’t the girls look so cute in their matching Cath Kidston* pjs? We’ve been wondering how old they will be before they ask us to stop dressing them in matching outfits! If they are anything like us, they will both still be twinning in their thirties!

Nursery Inspiration | She and Hem | Festive LightsNursery Inspiration | She and Hem | Festive Lights

Nursery Inspiration | She and Hem | Festive Lights

Big thanks to Festive Lights for our new lighting. With Christmas on the horizon we are sure to be spending a lot of time on your website!

J&Vx

This post is a collaboration and contains affiliate links, but the love of unicorns is all mum’s own. 

Cute Cuggl Travelcot

Cute Cuggl Travelcot Review | She and Hem Cute Cuggl Travelcot Review | She and Hem Cute Cuggl Travelcot Review | She and Hem

Last week I (Victoria) had the pleasure of spending a few nights away at Nantwen, a beautiful holiday cottage in Pembrokeshire. It was a lovely present from Jo as part of our collaboration with notonthehighstreet.com. If you are ever looking for somewhere to stay in the area, I’d definitely recommend it. We had such a relaxing few days! Something that I didn’t find quite as relaxing was packing for the trip. I’ve always disliked packing but it has changed significantly since having a baby. Before, I would spend far too long making sure I had outfits for all occasions, with accessories to match. Now, I chuck whatever is clean into my suitcase and hope for the best. I then spend the rest of the time triple checking we have everything my little one needs. And she needs a lot. Babies do not travel light.

If you are a regular reader, you’ll know that we took the girls to Bluestone a few months ago (review here), who provide travel cots as standard, so I haven’t needed to think about Ada’s holiday sleeping arrangements before now. As Nantwen is more of a couples getaway, we had to take anything we needed to make sure Ada was as comfortable as we were, so my plan was to try and borrow a travel cot. As luck would have it, that very same week an email appeared in our inbox asking if we’d like to try out something from Cuggl. Not heard of them before? Don’t worry, neither had I! They are a new nursery brand who have just launched at Argos. Keep an eye out for them when you are flicking through the catalogue circling things for your Christmas list. That’s still a thing, right?

The Cuggl Grey Travelcot was the first to catch my eye because it’s in my favourite colour scheme (yellow and grey) and looks so light and manageable. However, I thought it would be more sensible to try out the Cuggl Deluxe Travelcot* and Changing Unit, because it comes with, you guessed it, a changing unit! The unit came in really handy, and it was nice not to have to balance a changing mat somewhere or change Ada on the floor. Girl’s got class y’know. Not only did the Travelcot provide somewhere for Ada to sleep and be changed, but it also creates a safe playpen. Bonus! It’s on lockable wheels, so it can be moved around easily and as you can see on the pictures below, I popped Ada in for a little play (with these two pots that she is obsessed with!) whilst I run a bath and her dad made us breakfast. She was as happy as Larry, especially as she could see me the whole time thanks to the mesh sides. I’ve already recommended the travelcot to a few other mums and they have all asked if Ada slept ok in it, and I can happily say that she did!

Cute Cuggl Travelcot Review | She and Hem Cute Cuggl Travelcot Review | She and Hem Cute Cuggl Travelcot Review | She and Hem

If you are looking for any baby related kit, Cuggl got you covered!

Vx

Ghibli Museum, Japan.

Ghibli Museum, Japan | Hem and Away | She and HemGhibli Museum, Japan | Hem and Away | She and HemGhibli Museum, Japan | Hem and Away | She and Hem

Ghibli Museum, Japan | Hem and Away | She and HemGhibli Museum, Japan | Hem and Away | She and Hem

It’s my (Victoria) 2nd wedding anniversary in a next week, which not only means that I’m due a hella sweet present but also that lots of lovely wedding pictures have been popping up on my Facebook timeline. I’ve really enjoyed looking back at all the photos. It still feels like it was the perfect day.  A few photos that really caught my eye (and given me a severe case of wanderlust) were from our honeymoon. We went on a bit of a tour of Japan and it was honestly the BEST TIME EVER. I can’t imagine ever visiting anywhere that’s as magical, fun and interesting as Japan.

I can’t wait to take my daughter there in a few years time. My husband and I have decided to wait until she is old enough to appreciate it fully. We are keeping all of our fingers crossed that she loves Studio Ghilbi as much as we do, as it’ll be a great excuse to go back to The Ghibli Museum. As we are both huge Ghibli fans, as soon as we had our honeymoon route plotted (through the awesome Inside Japan), one of the first things we did was book our tickets to The Ghibli Museum and got VERY excited about riding the giant Cat Bus. A typical (purr-fect?) honeymoon activity I’m sure you’ll agree.

Ghibli Museum, Japan | Hem and Away | She and HemGhibli Museum, Japan | Hem and Away | She and Hem

I came away from the museum with so many beautiful photos, it was hard to whittle them down into a blog post. Hundreds of photos of dust bunnies, spiral stairways and glorious glass windows. Spellbinding stuff. There’s so much to enjoy that I’d even recommend a visit to non-Ghibli fans! Watch a short film in the Saturn Theatre, wander the roof garden with gorgeous views over Inokashira Park (and a giant robot) or pop for a Ghibli-themed lunch in the Straw Hat Cafe. Thinking about it all over again has put a big old smile on my face. You’ll be pleased to know that I did get a little Spirited Away in the gift shop and that cheeky Totoro above came home with me.

Ghibli Museum, Japan | Hem and Away | She and HemGhibli Museum, Japan | Hem and Away | She and HemGhibli Museum, Japan | Hem and Away | She and Hem

Sayōnara!

Vx

A Sight for Sore Eyes | Ollie Quinn

A Sight for Sore Eyes | Ollie Quinn | Bristol

A Sight for Sore Eyes | Ollie Quinn | Bristol

A Sight for Sore Eyes | Ollie Quinn | Bristol

A Sight for Sore Eyes | Ollie Quinn | Bristol

A Sight for Sore Eyes | Ollie Quinn | Bristol Ollie Quinn have just opened a brand new store on Park Street in Bristol and we went along to have a look around, choose some glasses and try not to make a complete spectacle of ourselves. If you are sat there thinking, girls, who are Ollie Quinn? Well, let us tell you. They’re easily the most stylish, chic and sassy independent opticians you will ever visit (if you’re lucky enough to live in London, Bristol, Bath, Brighton or Leeds). All of the frames are unique to the business, as they are designed and produced in-house and they are pretty damn affordable too! £98 to be exact, and that covers EVERYTHING. Spec-tacular! Gone are the days of choosing cheaper frames to keep the cost down, and then getting hit with a bill for anti-glare, scratch-resistant coating and a kitchen sink or two. Not at OQ, you’ll never leave having to pay more than £98 for your frames. We took along our current prescriptions, but a 30 minute eye exam costs £20. Raise your glasses to that.

The guys at the Park Street store were so friendly and helpful, we left feeling like we had made a couple of new friends. We had a chat about our personal style, which really helped us to choose our new frames (and my goodness was it hard to choose!). Thankfully, the staff managed to give us some honest feedback on the frames we had picked without making us feel self conscious. They even let the babies try on some frames and as you can see below, they looked so cheeky, we’ll really have to keep our eyes on those little ladies. Sorry, these puns really couldn’t get any cornea.

A Sight for Sore Eyes | Ollie Quinn | Bristol A Sight for Sore Eyes | Ollie Quinn | Bristol

I went for a statement square frame called ‘Daniel’* in brown zebra, which you can see in close up here, and I absolutely love them. Even though they are oversized, they’re not at all heavy, and I’ve had so many compliments since swapping from my old smaller frames (seen here).  Jo chose a pair of the rounder cat-eye ‘Jelka’* frames in pink spice. Nice. Jo knew she wanted something colourful, so mentioned to the staff that she often chooses coloured glasses (example here) that clash with lots of the things that she wears and aren’t always work appropriate. We all agreed that these frames will go with everything, look smart and the subtle pink adds the element of colour she was after.

A Sight for Sore Eyes | Ollie Quinn | Bristol A Sight for Sore Eyes | Ollie Quinn | Bristol A Sight for Sore Eyes | Ollie Quinn | Bristol A Sight for Sore Eyes | Ollie Quinn | Bristol

One last perk that will probably only interest mums with pushchairs, but is useful to note, OQ is all on one level! I had to cancel an appointment at an opticians on Whiteladies Road recently, as without a lift or buggy store, I couldn’t get upstairs for the eye test! A real eye opener, I’m sure you’ll agree.

Thanks for inviting us along OQ!

V&J

Thanks for the support | Bravissimo

Thanks for the support | Bravissimo | Bath Thanks for the support | Bravissimo | Bath Thanks for the support | Bravissimo | Bath

Bra shopping has always been a bit of a nightmare for us, and to be honest it’s even harder now that we both have little ones in tow. Babies and changing rooms just do not mix! Neither of us have ever enjoyed getting measured for bras in the past, so much so that we recently confessed to each other that we had both been guessing our bra sizes throughout pregnancy and breastfeeding – not our breast idea!

We were therefore slightly apprehensive when the lovely Bravissimo got in touch to invite us to their new Bath store. Was it a booby trap? We had visions of them laughing at our ill fitting nursing bras whilst we crammed ourselves into the changing rooms with a pair of screaming babies. Nothing could have been further from the truth! Holy macaroni, this is bra shopping! This store has been so thoughtfully designed, and was a bit of a revelation to us. We had no idea underwear shopping could be such a positive, welcoming experience. First, we were ushered to two huge changing rooms, which were even large enough for babies to crawl around in. Then, we were introduced to our lovely fitters. They listened to our needs, which were (of course) mostly breastfeeding related, before measuring us (yep, totally wrong sizes) and bringing us some styles to try on. AbracadaBRA!

Thanks for the support | Bravissimo | Bath Thanks for the support | Bravissimo | Bath Thanks for the support | Bravissimo | Bath

Thanks for the support | Bravissimo | Bath

There were some seriously glorious looking bras in store that we knew were going to be off limits to us, but we were still pleasantly surprised by the nursing offerings. Bravissimo’s nursing range is all about comfort and practicality, without skimping on style. Just because these boobs have a job to do, it doesn’t mean that us mums shouldn’t feel special.

Did you know that Bravissimo also sell clothes for the rest of your body? Because we didn’t! Good thing they set us straight, as Jo is now obsessed with the stunning wide leg jumpsuit* seen above, and I’m not surprised because it looks gorgeous. I can’t wait to get my hands on one of their colourful bikinis for next year’s holiday. Since our visit we’ve found that due to the right size underwear (thanks again girls!) our shapes have both improved, which has done so much for our post-partum confidence. If you needed any more convincing to give Bravissimo a visit, check out their changing room doors. Each has a quote from customers based on their super experiences shopping at the store. And last but not least, they also have a reward system. Free bras! Cup a load of that.

Thanks to all at Bravissimo for inviting us both along to check out the new store and for being beyond lovely to the babies. As you can see above, the wonderful Emily even managed to get Jo’s daughter Poppy to have a little nap whilst we were browsing. I know a lot of mums who’d pay extra for this service!

Thanks for the support | Bravissimo | Bath

Thanks for the support | Bravissimo | Bath Thanks for the support | Bravissimo | Bath Thanks for the support | Bravissimo | Bath Thanks for the support | Bravissimo | Bath

So BRAvo, Bravissimo. Reader, are you a Bravissimo girl?

V&J

#SummerofSurprise with notonthehighstreet.com

#SummerofSurprise with Not On The High Street

#SummerofSurprise with Not On The High Street

#SummerofSurprise with Not On The High Street

Happy International Friendship Day!

If you’re reading this blog, you probably already know that we are super chums, BFF’s, all round top pals. Our wonderful friendship goes way beyond the blog. We holiday together, were bridesmaids for each other and we even had our beautiful babies one month apart. Both girls, obviously. But above all that, and please forgive the sentimentality here, our phones automatically connect to each other’s wifi. Pretty close, right?

We like to think we know each other better than anyone else (other than our husbands, of course!). So when notonthehighstreet.com got in touch to see if we wanted to celebrate International Friendship Day with them as part of their super sweet #SummerofSurprises campaign, we jumped at the chance! A great friend is something to cherish and celebrate, so we were both chuffed to be asked to choose a gift for one another. We wanted to choose a real treat that the other probably wouldn’t splurge on for themselves, and it was a lot of fun!

#SummerofSurprise with Not On The High Street

#SummerofSurprise with Not On The High Street

#SummerofSurprise with Not On The High Street

What I (Victoria) didn’t realise was exactly how wide a range of things notonthehighstreet.com sells, and how genuinely awesome it all is. I was a little overwhelmed at first and had soon opened (roughly) a million tabs filled with potential treats for Jo. As Jo is moving next month, I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to get her something special for the new house that both her and her husband would love. I’ve spent A LOT of time in their current flat, so I like to think I have a pretty good idea of their personal style. Added to what I know about their new place (contemporary and modern), I decided to go for something useful, fun and stylish.

After deciding that a chair possibly wasn’t an appropriate gift, however useful, the incredible Hoop Wall Light* (pictured below) caught my eye whilst browsing the home items. It completely fitted the bill! I could imagine them both admiring it in a trendy interiors store whilst out shopping, and I just knew that Jo would love it as much as I did. Who wouldn’t want to spend their downtime sitting under a giant glowing moon? I can’t wait to see it where they hang it in the new pad. I hope they find it as illuminating as I did.

#SummerofSurprise with Not On The High Street #SummerofSurprise with Not On The High Street#SummerofSurprise with Not On The High Street Jo here! Just like Victoria, I soon had a long list of ideas about what to pick thanks to all of the original gifts on the website. A sentimental person would they say they are just as unique as our friendship. Awwww. What I didn’t know was that notonthehighstreet.com also sells experiences, and my goodness, they all sound great! The gifts on offer include stargazing, a pinata workshop and even bee keeping! However, as Victoria is allergic to bees, that would have made for a memorable, if not particularly enjoyable experience…

After collecting my thoughts, I remembered that Victoria’s second wedding anniversary is coming up in September, so I thought it would be pretty dreamy to send her and her husband off for a romantic stay somewhere. As luck would have it, one of the NOTHS partners offered an overnight stay* in the cutest cottage hideaway in Wales, which just so happens to be where Victoria and her husband met. Log fire, roll top bath and welcome hamper all included. Now where do I collect my BFF award guys?

On giving the gift to Victoria yesterday in preparation for International Friends Day, she was absolutely thrilled. In fact she was so happy that she said she’s going to write a post all about her time away in Pembrokeshie, so look out for that on the blog later in the year!

#SummerofSurprise with Not On The High Street#SummerofSurprise with Not On The High Street#SummerofSurprise with Not On The High StreetThanks for making this International Friendship Day the best ever, notonthehighstreet.com

V&J x

Sleepyhead Deluxe Transport Bag

Sleepyhead Deluxe Transport Bag | She and Hem Sleepyhead Deluxe Transport Bag | She and Hem Sleepyhead Deluxe Transport Bag | She and Hem Sleepyhead Deluxe Transport Bag | She and Hem

It’s now time to share a little something that I (Victoria) didn’t know I needed until I got one. Handy, right? It’s a travel bag* for my most used baby item, the Sleepyhead Deluxe, beautifully modelled here by Jo and Poppy. As my little girl definitely takes after her mama and loves her sleep (thank you Ada!), we get a heck of a lot of use out of the Sleepyhead. It is something I would genuinely recommend to anyone expecting a baby and to any new mums reading. Yes, it’s expensive, but I think a good night’s sleep in the early days is worth every penny. I’ll be purchasing the next size up, no doubt about it.

Sleepyhead Deluxe Transport Bag | She and Hem

Sleepyhead Deluxe Transport Bag | She and Hem

A few weeks ago Jo and I were lucky enough to head off for a stay at the wonderful Bluestone in Wales (more on that, here) with our husbands and the girls, which was the perfect opportunity to give the travel bags their first road test. They transported the bags stylishly and were (obviously!) ideal for storing the Sleepyhead when not in use. Great for keeping the merchandise looking as good as new! Throw in a few pockets here and there, and you’ve got a pretty nifty one stop shop for all your baby essentials.

Are you a fan of the Sleepyhead?

V&J

Wedding Guest Dress – Breastfeeding Friendly

Wedding Guest Dress - Breastfeeding Friendly | She and Hem

Wedding Guest Dress - Breastfeeding Friendly | She and Hem

Wedding Guest Dress - Breastfeeding Friendly | She and Hem

Wedding season is now officially upon us and I (Victoria) am delighted to be a guest at my second wedding of the year next month. Oh, I do love a good wedding! However, shopping for an outfit has been slightly harder this year, as I am still exclusively breastfeeding my little girl. First time around I went for a skirt and top combo and used a technique known as ‘one up, one down’. For the uninitiated, this simply means wearing a vest underneath your top to pull up or down (aha!) as needed, neatly protecting your modesty while feeding in public. A top mum hack there, learned, like so many other things, from a Facebook group!

Wedding Guest Dress - Breastfeeding Friendly | She and Hem

Wedding Guest Dress - Breastfeeding Friendly | She and Hem

Wedding Guest Dress - Breastfeeding Friendly | She and Hem

Wedding Guest Dress - Breastfeeding Friendly | She and Hem

As regular readers will know, we are very much dress girls here at She and Hem, so I’ve long been on the hunt for some breastfeeding friendly pieces. As luck would have it, I think I’ve found the perfect one! Unless the weather takes a drastic turn, the Clemmie Shirt Dress from Boden is the dress I’ll be rocking up in. This cotton shirt dress falls just below the knee, which is super flattering, especially when constantly picking the little one up and putting her down. It also has what I now consider to be a daily essential; pockets. Another perk of this dress, and one I had never really considered, is the hidden buttons! Located on the chest, these Mum friendly gems ensure there’s no dress gape or accidental flashing. Ingenious! I would go as far as to call them a personal game changer and will definitely be keeping my eyes peeled for more brands adopting this subtle little twist.

Wedding Guest Dress - Breastfeeding Friendly | She and Hem

Keen to see more breastfeeding friendly dresses? Just let us know in the comments!

Vx