A Vegan London Do for Adele

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This year, without a doubt, is the year of weddings…. and with weddings come hen dos… I have been on 2 amazing Do’s this month and have mine to look forward to next month! eeekkkk

The first Do of the year belonged to my lovely friend Adele who is getting married to Chris in May on Spitbank Fort in the Solent…. I can’t wait!! It’s going to be a fab day and if the Do was anything to go by we’re all going to have a great time and eat very well.

The Do was organised by my Bestie Anna and the other bridesmaids and for the weekend shenanigans we headed to London. Anna and I headed up early so we could decorate the Air BnB and get everything ready for the arrival of the Bride-To-Be.

Anna had made sure that there was lots of chilled fun and vegan food and I must admit it was one of the tastiest Do’s I’ve ever been on!!!

After an exciting Drive through London (over Tower Bridge I might point out) we arrived at our converted Vicarage and set to making the place fit for the weekend. It was a gorgeous find which was 2 conjoined flats, the master suite a mezzanine floor over the central living space so it was ideal for decorating!

Anna and the girls had organised some super cute touches like a personalised set of Pjs for Mrs B to be, vegan sweeties on everyone pillows and photos from throughout Adele’s life!

On arrival after the grand tour, we all got changed into our Pjs and settled in around the huge kitchen table and had an amazing vegan feast of curry followed by a raw berry cheesecake!!! (I told you we ate well!!) After some impressive dance moves and quite a few drinks we all retired to our rooms and called it a night.

The next morning, the sun pouring in through the vicarage windows we woke and had another amazing meal prepared by Anna, homemade Banana Bread, cashew mascarpone cream, berries and honey…..

Once dressed and fed, we headed out into the London Sunshine and checked out Broadway Market which was bustling and bursting at the seams with delicious food and wares….




Once we’d had a stroll about and ohh’d and ahhh’d over the the many cute dogs and puppies which stopped us in our tracks every few minutes we returned to base camp, got set and headed into central London. The destination was Ethos Food, an amazing vegan and vegetarian restaurant where you pay by weight eliminating waste and meaning each person can have just what they want. The food, the staff and the general atmosphere was amazing and I can’t wait to take Maxwell back here at a later date! The food was amazing and the girls had also made everyone a little goody bag full of treats and treasures!! Adele was also gifted a fab handmade veil and sash! ❤


Once we were all fed and Adele had seen her book and enjoyed a tear jerker of a letter from her hubby to be it was time to move on again and off we headed to Escape.

This was such fun. we weren’t allowed phones or cameras inside but the aim of the game was to steal the crown jewels and break out of a vault in an hour! Divided up into groups of 4-6 it was a great was of bonding and team building and was such fun! I’d never done one before but totally would again!!

After that it was back to the Vicarage and we started getting ready for the evening out. I left my camera at home for the evening as it’s not the easiest to transport. We headed to Zigfrid Von Underbelly in Hoxton Square for dinner and cocktails then headed onto a club later to dance the night away.

The next morning we were up early to pack up the house and our cases and sore heads in tow we headed back to Broadway Market to have an amazing breakfast and cafe come plant shop Twigs! Anna had booked us the big table and we all enjoyed an insanely good asian inspired breakfast of rice waffles with a selection of toppings; I opted for bacon, egg with a  miso / peanut dressing which was delicious! So much so I came home and tried to recreate it the following week!

Over breakfast we also played Hen Do favourite ‘Mr & Mrs’, once the plates were cleared we headed back out into the sunshine (seriously we had the best weather) and headed to Columbia Road Flower Market. Anna who used to live around that area was great and showed us all the cute side roads and best spots…. Most of the group opted out of the hustle and bustle of the crowed main street but I headed in, camera in tow and enjoyed the crowds and gorgeous blooms! Out I came the other side with a beautiful selection of flowers and joined the girls in an ice cream cone!

The last port of call for our weekend was Hackney City Farm which is as it suggests, a quirky inner city farm. We conveniently timed our trip to enjoy some new farmyard babies including a couple of teeny lambs and the cutest little goats!!!

And there you have it…. From there we all headed home and what a brilliant weekend!! A huge well done to my girl Anna and the bridesmaids for organising such a fun and hen orientated weekend! I know I had an amazing time and I’m pretty sure Mrs B to B did too!!! ❤

 

Most Curious 2017

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Hello Friends, sorry I’ve been a bit quiet this month… March/April has flown by in a blink of an eye and it’s been a busy month for me and Maxwell! I now find myself nearing the end of April and I’m still playing catch up.

I first drafted this post whilst chilling out at my future in-laws for a weekend of R&R in preparation of my birthday week (more on that later) but I’m glad to inform you I have managed to squeeze in a bit of fun amongst the business.

A few months back my gorgeous friend Kelly asked me to be one of her bridesmaids, something I was beyond touched by! Kelly is one of those gals who’s style is very much in tune with mine so I was super excited about her upcoming nuptials. If anyones wedding was going to be a kin to mine, it would be Kelly & Charlie’s….. ekkk!!


Last year Kelly accompanied me, my MOH Onion, Mumma Lo, fellow bestie Becca (which I’m also BM for) and her beautiful Mumma Carolyn as we did our first wedding wedding fair experience together. (you can read about it here) A year later (where did that time go?) and this time it was my job to accompany Kelly as she got inspired for her big day.

Having been two years on the trot it was fascinating to see how things had moved on in a year, and also some favourites return traders… The main thing that struck me this year was that pink is big business for 2017/2018 brides!

There was also an overwhelming feeling of love, which for a wedding fair is pretty fair game!! As soon as we walked into the Truman Brewery we were once again transported into world of alternative wedding wonderment! Again like last year Most Curious was a breath of fresh air and everyone was so blooming lovely (It must be a requirement on the trader booking form or something)

So… enough of the chit chat, let me show you some pics and things that caught my eye… (I’ll share links to companies and suppliers below!)

First up, divine florals and fabrics by Pom Pom Blossom and cakey goodness because lets be honest no one likes a wedding fair without a free cake sample (or 4). These tasty morsels from Claire Owen Cakes set the bar pretty high!! (and you can see what I mean about the pink already can’t you!?!

2017 still remained a beautiful bohemian nod to all things vintage inspired, individual and quirky!! From amazing dresses & accessories from Halfpenny London and Tilly Thomas Lux, to sweet french treats from Jaques & Lilie and gorgeous Animalesque handmade headwear!

Pops of colour and a spot of rock and roll were nestled amongst the bohemian, much to Kelly’s delight. Gorgeous neon blooms by FROG Floral Artistry and cake offerings inspired by musical heroes from Ginger & the Whisks. Even Clara Francis Jewellery was getting in on the act with headbands Ziggy Stardust would’ve been proud to wear!

A big shout out is also deservered to the glamourous ladies of PORTRAITS Hair & Make up stall for being so lovely, giving us product tips and a lesson on how to correctly do a halo braid!

Also the extremely dapper chap from Topman Personal Shopping who was the best dressed man there and gave us free bowties for our boys!

It was then time to grab ourselves a Pink Drink, a Pink Front Row seat and settle down for the very pink catwalk show (should I be concerned there’s no pink in my wedding???)

The end of the catwalk was a flurry of tactile pink florals which mimicked the cascading flowers at the other end! It was enough to make us all feel very girly as we sipped out raspberry filled Pinkster Gin complimentary VIP cocktail!!

The first show was MODERN DISCO and that is was… sequins, faux fur, jumpsuits and you guessed it, lots of pink…

Bar a bit of a wait and an annoyingly placed ladder backstage (I couldn’t be bothered to edit it out… sorry) the first show was great and offered up lots of alternative options for a 2017/2018 bride wanting something a little something different.

After a couple of group shots from the girls it was on to more stalls, more cake and more treats for the eyes…

Scenes and Stories had a lust-worthy stall and even had trails of tassels something I’m currently making for our big day! (great minds think alike eh?!) There’s was a stall of Moroccan inspired styling items for hire and if anyone ever wants to throw me a party feel free to speak to the lovely Jenny!! There was also some more amazing cakes by Lucie Bennett… her samples were insanely good and we totally wanted to be greedy and try one of everything!!!

I also spotted the amazing Leoni Blue Photography who I worked with a million years ago on a Mia Mai shoot! Small world! ❤

We turned the corner and were met with stall upon stall of amazing florists, styling and decor traders… Lula & Rye, The Wild Fox & Friend of Faux. (all the heart eye emoji’s)

Then it was time to grab another FROW crushed velvet blush chaise longue and get ready for the second show of the day, ‘LAID BACK AND ALMOST FAMOUS’… another nod to the late 70s with lots of customised jackets on show…

Sorry… I was quite click happy wasn’t I!? haha! A few more group shots an off we went again…

From there we checked out some more gorgeous florists and a unique idea for updating the light up letters trend…

After that we stepped into a little bohemian haven… 

This stall was stunning and I’m so sad we missed Natalie of Curious Fair as her headdresses, masks and dried florals were simply stunning!!!!!

I want to make some feather crowns for my minis to play dress up in and this 100% confirmed my idea and made me definitely want to do it! Gorgeous!!!!

Something that really struck me this year was the gorgeousness of the stalls displays… this little nook of Make-up in Orangeries, Leonard Garland and The Fire Pit Camp was lust-worthy and so very pretty!

I also had the absolute pleasure of meeting Helaina Storey who I met via the Love My Dress FB group and have followed her journey from wedding planning to beautiful bride and now a successful wedding design business! Being that this is something I am wanting to do once I’m a Mrs it was a pleasure to meet Helaina and chat about her business and how its going!

This year the fair had grown and almost doubled in size… there was a whole other room with an extra 40 odd traders…. By this point we were starting to flag (definfintely should have gone for food and come back) but like the first room this too was jam packed with amazing traders and treats for the eyes and tummies.

This scrumptious cake stall by Isobel Bakes was super cute and I adored her eclectic cake toppers and mix of florals!! beautiful

A few other things which caught my eye (if not my camera) was The Portrait Machine, a super fun alternative to a photobooth. An artist sat in a box who creates personal little illustrations of your guests and after a whirr and and whizz, pops the finished drawing out through a little slot. So funny!!!

Flowers & Foliage was also a unique gift idea for any bride who wants a keepsake. Stunning bespoke botanic artwork can be created depicting the brides bouquet!! so pretty!!

And finally The Mother Shuckers… who Kelly (oyster fan) was pretty happy to see! I stood by and watched her do her thing (oyster hater) And there you have it….

Another cracking experience at Most Curious, I’m hoping by next year I’ll have launched my new business so I have another reason to go again next year! Thank you Most Curious for again setting the alternative bridal fair bar so high and creating an oasis of inspiration in your very own pinktopia!!! Yay!

In no particular order some of the stalls that caught my eye and I’d like to share with you:

Friend of Faux | Claire Owen Cakes | Jacques & Lilie | Animalesque | Frog Floral Artistry | PORTRAITS | Scenes and Stories | Ginger and the Whisks | Topman Personal Shopping | Curious Fair | Leonard Garland | Leoni Blue Photography | Helaina Storey Wedding Design | Isobel Bakes | The Portrait Machine | Flowers & Foliage | Pom Pom Blossom | Fox Glove Studio | Blossom & Crumb | AM Faulkner | Halfpenny London | Tily Thomas Lux | Fox & Owl | Music by Kate and Dave | Eclectic Eccentricity | Calm amongst the Chaos| Howling Moon Headwear | Papier | Oh Squirrel | Natalie J Wedding Photography | Wedding Jam | The Wild Fox | Clara Francis Jewellery

 

 

 

Wedding Series #17

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I know I know, I am spectacularly late with last months post… In the past month, in addition to our own wedding prep I’ve also managed to squeeze in helping to organise 2 hen dos (not my own) a family do (my own) having a birthday, attending a hen do, Niece’s Birthday, working and trying not to be a lousy friend/fiance.

Sometimes juggling everything that needs juggling can be a bit hard and you find yourself working till 11.30pm each night and blogging before 8am in the morning trying to fit it all in. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining, I’m blessed to be able to do all that I am doing, I’m just saying that when things are this busy you gotta go a bit easier on yourself and ask for help when needed.

Some sound advice for any bride to be out there! We all lead such frantic lives at the best of time that when you throw 1 (or 3) big other events into the mix you’re going to, at times, feel like not enough butter over too much bread.

Thats being said, take advantage of how your brain seems to be working 110%, use those brainwaves which strike at bizarre times, take those good ideas and put them to good use, use those quiet early mornings, when normally you’d be having a lie in (but you can’t because you brain is going over your to-do list at 30mph) to do something productive. Most importantly take time out every now and again and accept help when it’s offered!!!

With all that out the way, we have been able to do some small bits for the wedding prep this this month (well technically last month, but well you know…)

Let me update you….

Work on the dress is still going really well… Mumma Lo has been amazing, sewing through the nights to hand sew all the trimmed edges of my gown and we now have something that’s really starting to resemble a completed dress! eekkkk…. The first time we pulled all the elements together was pretty exciting! (it’s all getting real now)

Proper construction on the mini’s is all coming together too and I’m not even bragging they are going to be the most adorable group of mini’s ever!!! haha…

Something new that we did last month, which was something we were quite excited about, was doing tin cans, you know, like to hang from the back of the car. We headed to the Mediterranean Supermarket and stocked up on different sized cans. Stripped off the labels and sprayed them all a brassy gold colour. We then handed them out, with instructions to our most creative / artistic friends and family and now eagerly await their return…

  Cute huh?? I can’t wait to see what we get back….

Here are a few of our inspiration pics…



 Another huge thing that I did last month was had my make up trial. I mentioned last month that after a lot of time ummming and ahhing I made the decision to have my make done for me…. some things are best left in the hands of the professionals and in this case my face definitely was! Haha! Friend and MUA Naomi Lake came to join me and Mumma Lo as we spent a fun day playing about with the biggest makeup kit you ever did see!

You can see my wedding inspiration Pinterest board here. I wanted a really fresh, dewy skin, nothing to heavily contoured or chiseled, warm tones on my eyes and a dark berry lip.

A few of my face inspirations first…

 

 

 

And on to my trial… Naomi was fab and let me change my mind and keep playing about till things were right… I also had it done early on in the morning so was able to see how it lasted and get feedback from Maxwell…

There are a few things I might tweak for the actual day i.e., all my inspiration pics and the ones I really liked didn’t have eyeliner, so we thought lets try without, but I didn’t realise how that little thing that I do each morning is part of the thing that makes me feel like me. Without it I didn’t feel quite right. Even Maxwell mentioned it looked a little unfinished… if even the boys think it’s not quite there, then it needs sorting. So on the day the Ami eyeliner will be back in place.

Also I’m still not 100% on my lips… the hunt continues for the perfect long-lasting treatment but I got some fab suggestions from my Facebook Love My Dress Belles group! (what would I do without them!?)

It also got me to thinking about how many brides abandon their usual look, and instead of looking like them (in a wedding dress) just become ‘the bride’. Why, on the most important day of my life would I even think not to do something I do everyday, it’s just silly right?! But again it’s easy to get caught up in what you ‘should’ be doing, what’s bridal etc. I say forget all of that, go with what makes you happy and feel like you. Maxwell’s biggest fear was that I wouldn’t look like me and isn’t that sad, that the guy you’re marrying loves you everyday, make up free and dodgy home attempts so on your wedding day if you suddenly rock up with HD brows and contoured skin he’s going to be like ‘where’s my girl?’

Let that be a lesson to us all… don’t loose ‘you’ in the journey to become a Mrs!

One more thing I want to share this month is that our engagement pics by the lovely Hayley Savage were picked up the the fantastic Doily Days wedding magazine. The lovely Helen asked me if I could share a few of the pics and some musings from a bride to be. So I did just that and it’s so lovely to see them in print!! 



Thank you Helen and if you haven’t seen Doily Days yet, you must!!! It’s an amazing inspirational wedding guide and it’s free!! FREE… that’s gonna speak to all brides I know!!

You can read the latest magazine, which we’re featured in here

Thanks again lovely Helen!! It was so lovely seeing our photos and words in print!! 

Anyway, I’ll keep it short this month as I have a million other things to do this month!

Till next time xxx

 

 

Wedding Series #16

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Another month, another update from this boho bride-to-be… It’s been an eventful month over here, one that’s tested and tried us but as we bid farewell to February, and say hello to March, I’m happy to report we are all good and we are smiling, which is all that matters right?!

The month took an unexpected turn at beginning when our lovely housemate told us he’d be moving out the following week as he’d found the perfect little studio flat. Obviously this was a bit of a shock, both personally and financially, but we understood why he was moving on and we needed to adjust and figure out what to do. We discussed our options as financially having a housemate was helping us out hugely with saving for the wedding but on the flip side, did we want to bring a stranger into our home and have them put up with all our wedding junk everywhere….? The answer was no… Bringing in someone for just the next 6months seemed pointless and honestly we were ready to just have our own home, so we did just that. We briefly looked into mortgages, but have decided for our sanity, that we would instead stay put for the next 6 months and the readdress the situation once we’re husband and wife.

So yeah… a bit weird and it’s been tough, but it’s also been wonderful….We’ve started being even more frugal with our spending and equally are trying to make even more money any way we can; be it through selling artwork / old clothes / working 24/7 to make up for the £2000 which we’ll be down come July. Obviously this also means that paying out for wedding things has become a bit more tricky but our parents have all been wonderful and are continuing to help us where possible. It really does make you realise how lucky are doesn’t it, when you’re in a tight spot, and people are there checking in and helping where they can.

Everyone knows weddings are expensive, but life in general is too, chatting to friends recently and it seems everyone can relate! It’s definitely one of those years where everyone is getting married and everyone has multiple weddings to attend! Fun yes, but expensive too!

We’re continuing to keep costs inline though by doing as much ourselves as possible. Also, I’m just going to put it out there, having our own home is amazing. I feel like I can truly relax 100% in my own home, which after renting with various people over the last 8 years, is an amazing feeling. We have for the first time got a home just us two and we’re loving it. And I’m excited for the next year or so where hopefully we can really start building our own home together!

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In the mean time we have wisely transformed our spare room (how grown up does that sound) into ‘wedding HQ’ and as I write I’m sat in front of the window, light flooding in, surrounded by all our wedding treasures and creations! It’s pretty lovely!

So moving on. What else have we been up to? I mentioned last month that I’d created the biggest to-do list you’d ever seen, we’ll we’re still working through that. I also mentioned and promised to share with you some photos of our evening invites so here goes…

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Sorry the pics aren’t as nice as my first lot, I just snapped them quickly for this blog post, but hopefully you can see kind of what we did, we created another roll fold to keep all the bits in the middle but put all the top tips in the inside. I’m really proud of them and think the whole invitation design thing was super fun!! Also feedback was lovely! Yay!

So… what else have been up to? I finished all the napkins finally (am so happy with them) they are also all folded, pressed and I have tied these up with place settings and favours…yay! Maxwell wants me to keep the end result a surprise for our guests, so for now I will just show you a sofa full of pressed napkins in all their prettiness!

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We (amazing Mumma and I) have also been continuing work on my dress (whoo hoo) and those of the mini maids! For the last year (at least) I have been collecting a hoard of vintage lace and crochet trims, vintage and second hand garments. The mini’s, all 8 of them are all have mismatched cream/white/ivory dresses with a very vintage / boho look. Mumma and I got out all my treasures and matched things up coming up with a design for each little lady. Mumma has been amazing, washing everything and starting to compile all the dresses, we even did our first fitting on my niece the other day and if that’s anything to go by these little ladies are going to be melting everyones hearts!!!

I’ll wait till next month to give you a sneak peek of the dresses as I’ll also scan in my designs!

One more fun thing we did this month was have a tasting for our vegan friends. The wedding is pretty much all vegetarian but as we have quite a few vegans coming we wanted to make sure that no one felt left out when the food came out, especially in relation to the evening buffet which is basically cheese and crackers! haha! So with that in mind we reached out to our dear friends and raw food specialists Ginger and Peach. Tara, the amazing food guru prepared us 3 nut cheeses to sample and they were amazing…

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Tara made us a herbed pine nut and cashew log, an aged macadamia nut cheeze and a cashew cheddar cream cheeze. These were amazing and I’m so excited to be able to offer our vegan friends something so unique! We have also decided to ask Tara to make us one of her stunning raw cakes to liven up our evening cake buffet! Yum! So exciting that things are all coming together and I’m loving that we’re involving one of our fave local business!

The last thing I want to tell you about is make up! I’ve been umming and ahhing for ages about what to do… do I DIY, do I have a professional lesson then still DIY or do I bring in someone who knows what they’re doing? Well a couple of weeks back I was staying with my bestie Becca and she had he make up trail when I was there and I was mega impressed… you know sometimes things just align and work out? Karma I like to think of it as, well I started chatting to a MUA friend who I’ve worked with previously and she mentioned she was coming down and with a rare monday off, our diaries clicked and we’re booking in a trial, which is exciting! With that in mind I’ve been pinning Make up ideas and I’m super excited!

I’ll share some pics next month! ekkkk!!

So, I think I’ve rambled on enough for one post (maybe it’s time to start doing 2 a month?!!)

Till next time… x

10 Most Wanted: A Valentines Special

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It’s that time of year again….

Another year, another Valentines with my love…. This will be my last one as a Miss…. How exciting! We’ve decided (like last year) to plan a special night in. We’ve both been really good saving and watching our weight in the run up to the big day so I think we both deserve a bit of indulgence!

I’ve been a bit sneaky and have got the boy a couple of little gifts (which I’ll share later) so the rest of the stuff we’ll be doing will be very DIY and purse friendly. Here are some hints and tips to get you and your lover in the mood!

valentines-2017one | treat yourself (or your lady) to a personalised trinket like this stunning necklace from stella and dot. two | slip into something a little sexy like this beautiful babydoll. three | treat yourself to a new addition to your record collection. four | paint your lips. five | and snuggle up in a luxurious fur throw. six | indulge in a few handmade chocolatey treats from your favourite local company. seven | invest in a 3-year joint relationship journal. eight | make sure you smell amazing. nine | light a beautiful candle to ensure the room smells amazing too. ten | and finally make sure you take a few snaps to treasure forever!

So there you have it… what ever you get up to…have fun lovers… xx

Eat #12

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Howdy folks…. I’m getting all romantic on you today and thought for todays ‘Eat’ post I’d share with you a three course valentines inspired menu! A starter, main and dessert, which if I had my way we’d be having. I may have to opt for a veggie main as Maxwell doesn’t east fish but it looked so delicious that I wanted to include it!

So without further ado… Here is what I’d suggest if you fancy making your lover a romantic meal for two.

For starter I suggest this vegan crostini with smoky white bean spread and roasted nectarine. I found this recipe on lazycatkitchen.com and I think we’re actually going to make this one as it sounds amazing!! You can find and have a go yourself here!

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For a main, if I had my way, I’d opt for fish (I love fish and it’s something I really miss!) So this monkfish dish really caught my eye! Roasted monkfish with cumin and coriander spice served with a baked aubergine purée. The recipe is from the good ol’ BBC food page and you find it here if you want to have a go?!

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And to round up this romantic meal for two… a Persian Love cake!!! Because, well it’s a Persian Love cake!! Twigg Studios shared this recipe a few years back and I think it’s time to actually make one.. what do you think?!

love-cakeSo there you have it, 3 romantic recipes which I’m sure will ensure you have a beautiful night in with your favourite!! xx

Wedding Series #15

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Well, we’ve made it; officially the year that I marry my love! How very very exciting!!

Ask any 2017 bride-to-be and she’ll tell you that the moment you cheered ‘Happy New Year’ it suddenly feels like you’ve got soooooooo much to do…. Maybe it’s the fact you can now say “we’re getting married this year” that fuels this urge to get stuff done? But what ever the reason… There’s been a huge sense of urgency over the last month… and what a month it’s been!!

So…. What have we been up to…? Well for one, I created the worlds biggest to-do list (Oh… The joys of having a mainly DIY approach) and we’ve been efficiently working our way through it I’m proud to add!!

The boys suits are all sorted! Hurray!!! Not something I predicted would a bit of a headache but getting the perfect mis-matched look was more challenging then I imagined… I’m happy to report that they are all sorted though, all happy with their outfits and they all look blooming gorgeous! yay!

Maxwell has been super busy getting Kermit (our wedding car) looking gorgeous too. Our basement comically looks like a car garage as various car parts are being lovingly stripped back, primed and painted a beautiful forest green! I love that he’s putting so much effort into making sure our wedding ride is perfect… I know boys can sometimes feel a little left out in the whole wedding prep game, but I really think that Maxwell is really interested in playing his part and making sure his input is apparent and evident too! What a lovely man I’ve bagged myself!

We’ve also sorted our evening invites… I’ll share some pics next month so not to ruin the surprise to any guests that are yet to receive one. Like with our day guests we’ve kept the evening guest list small and intimate… I’m so happy we’ve done this as I know everyone there is a true part of our lives. I’m not sure how many will come (being that it’s in the middle of nowhere on a Thursday night) but these extra people have been a part of Maxwell and my lives and I want them to know that. They shall be heading into the postbox tomorrow morning! eekk!!

I’ve also made a start hemming our napkins (no small task trust me) For the last year I have been collecting a variety of vintage fabric to use. My thought was it would add a bit of individuality to the table but also that I would be able to keep them after to use at home and maybe hire out (more on that later) I’m currently half way through and I’m so happy with how they’re looking!

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We’ve also been busy sorting gifts for our nearest and dearest. I’m SO excited with my gift for Maxwell, obviously I won’t say what it is on here (on the off chance he pops by to check what I’ve been saying) but it’s PERFECT!!! The rest of the crew are getting a mix of handmade or vintage items! I also got super prepared as I gift wrapped all the mini maids pressies ready to go! How cute do they look??

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Finally, the other big thing we’ve done is we made our wedding rings!!!! ekkkkk!!

I’ve been looking forward to doing this for ages and it didn’t disappoint! We spent the day with the awesome Sarah Macrae. I have known Sarah for about 10 years through my work and she’s an amazing designer jeweller. Sarah invited us to her home studio were we spent the most enjoyable day making each others wedding bands. I was a little unsure what I’d go for because of the size and shape of my engagement ring, but after chatting to my bestie and bride-to-be Miss Hayden she suggested why didn’t I go for another finger. So simple!! haha… It’s so easy to get caught up in what you ‘should’ do… it’s sometimes hard to see another simple option which is right in front of your face! So with this in mind I started thinking about what I wanted…. Maxwell had seen a ring (dirty rose-gold beat-up looking thing with grooves round the edges) which he’d kinda decided he wanted. I didn’t really mind which metal my ring was, as long as it matched Maxwell. So rose gold it was… Having said that I also wanted something that would also talk to my engagement ring, so I decided to buy a vintage marcasite eternity band (found on etsy) to sit alongside my wedding ring.

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So, decisions made and gold brought it was time to start making. With my job I kinda know the process and have made rings before but for Max it was a first time experience! Sarah was brilliant, she talked us through each step then left us to get on with it which was super lovely too. We started by making sure the wire strips were the right length, Maxwell went for 6x2mm D shape, mine was 2mm square wire. Once we’d got the length right and ends were filed flat, it was time to start bending it round into a as much of a ring shape as possible… when it wouldn’t go any more we annealed the metal to make it more pliable. Ends now touching it was time to solder the join.

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After a spot of lunch (with homemade bread I might add) it was time to get the rings to fit…. this was the most time consuming part, using a mandrel and a rawhide mallet we bashed and bashed until the rings were perfectly round and flat!

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Then for Maxwell the time to polish had come… He did such a good job and my ring is seamless and so beautiful. It sits perfectly alongside the marcasite eternity ring, I’m pretty proud of my boy… he did good!

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I didn’t have it quite so easy! After getting Maxwell’s ring perfect and smooth it was time to create the grooved effect. I did this by making 2 smaller rings with 1.2mm round wire, filing the edges flat and then soldering them all together.

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I think the hardest part was ensuring the inside of Maxwell’s ring was as perfect as he’d made mine, luckily, maxwell didn’t mind it looking a little homemade in the middle so after a hell of a lot of polishing I too was done!

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Hooray!!! It was quite emotional at times, Something I hadn’t have anticipated. Making something so special, for the person you love most in the world is a very beautiful thing, continually trying rings on all day is also pretty cute! ha ha

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So there you have it, after about 5 hours, a delicious lunch and a wonderful day spent with Sarah in her beautiful home & workshop, we headed off… We’d intentionally booked in the ring making for the 27/1/17 which marked our 6month count down. We ditched the diet for the evening and treated ourselves to dinner at Fez, a beautiful little turkish restaurant down a little side road in Petersfield. We shared a selection of starters and enjoyed a non alcoholic drink each (oh hey Dry January)

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dscf8266 dscf8271 dscf8274So there you have it… if you’re a bride to be, who’s not got their wedding bands yet I would 100% recommend making yours own, and if you’re looking for a jeweller then 100% go speak to Sarah, I can’t recommend her enough!!! We had such fun, and we’re both super proud of what we made. I want to wear mine all the time, but for now, it’s living in my engagement ring box with Maxwells where it’ll live for the next 6 months (only occasionally being taken out and tried on! ha ha)

so, till next time, this Bride-to-be is signing off! x

Eat #11

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Anyone that know me, knows that I fell in love with a vegetarian. I’m not a vegetarian I should point out, but I don’t eat a lot of meat and I actually think we’d all be better off if we ate less meat, so with that in mind, here are three meat free offerings which won’t leave you feeling short changed!

First up is a roasted vegetable plate with red pepper spread from Sprouted Kitchen. This would be am amazing main for a roast dinner!! You can find the recipe here.

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Now for something that would make a fab lunch or brunch – Carrot Pancakes with salted yogurt! Yum!!! This recipe comes from Bon Appetit and if you’re feeling inspired you can get the recipe here.

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And my last vegetarian treat for you today is Cauliflower sformato with crispy kale and caramelised pine nuts!! Sounds good right?! For anyone not in the know a sformato is a bit like a dense soufflé or a crustless quiche! The recipe is from Olive Magazine and can be found online here.

cauliflowerThere you go…. Good huh!! I hope you enjoy…. If there’s any particular recipes you want me to seek out, just shout…. I’d be happy to help!

Eat #10

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It’s cold outside, the evening are dark and we’re all still mourning the fact it’s no longer socially acceptable to be having chocolate for breakfast.

90% of people I know are on a new year health-kick but a salad just doesn’t cut it. This time of year calls for one thing… hearty, healthy comfort food and that’s just what I’m sharing today…

3 amazing recipes that will get your taste buds going crazy!!

First up is a firm favourite in our house but a vegan friendly version which is even better!

Vegan Mac & Cheese by vegetarian guru Jennifer of the brilliant  deliciouseveryday.com.  Any veggie follows must check out her blog for loads of scrumptious recipes and if you want to have a go at making this amazing pasta dish you can find the recipe here.

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My next offering is this amazing looking indian dish from one of my fave foody blogs – Half Baked Harvest. Creamy cashew, paneer and butter…. Urrmmm yum! You can see the original post and recipe here… (FYI… this one may not be quite so good for the dieters out there but anyone looking for a hug on a plate… it certainly delivers

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Finally is an amazing Moroccan sweet-potato and lentil soup from littlespicejar.com. We’re big lovers of Moroccan cuisine in this household and this soup looks like it will certainly warm the cockles!! If you want a go you can find the recipe here.

soul-warming-moroccan-sweet-potato-lentil-soup-9Feeling hungry? I know I am!

A Belated New Years Post…

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…Luckily ‘being on time’ wasn’t one of my N.Y.Resolutions!

Happy New Year friends! I hope you all saw in the New Year surrounded by loved ones and with a smile on your face! We sure did!

In the days between Christmas and New Year we chilled, saw friends and family and tried to relax as much as possible… On NYE after a big ol’ lego session with my cousin and his kids, we donned our glad-rags and hopped into the car and up to the big smoke we headed.

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We were to see in the New Year with one of my best friends (and fellow bride-to-be) Becca and her handsome hubby-to-be Edward. We arrived and the shenanigans began… First up beer pong! Even though I HATE beer and throw like a girl (apologies to any female discus throwers out there) this was super fun and a great way to meet and befriend fellow guests!

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After that it was time for some food. Edward is a bit of a whizz in the kitchen and whipped up a delish supper for us all which went down a treat!

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The rest of the evening whizzed by in a blur of champagne, dancing and chatting and playing games. Before we knew it, it was 10 to midnight and we all ventured outside with a posh bottle of fizz in hand. Corks popped, shouted toasts of “we’re getting married this year”, and quite a bit of kissing and 2017 begun in the best possible of ways.

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We then began the most amusing backyard firework display…. 8 tipsy adults and £70 of fireworks… what could possibly go wrong! haha Luckily we all escaped without injury and many ohs and ahhs (and ha has) were had!!

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We stumbled into bed in the early hours of the morning and I kissed the man who I was to marry this year goodnight.

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We woke late and joined our friends for a bit of post-party breakfast then began a very lazy start to the 2017 (sofa, snoozes, pjs, snacks and Harry Potter/disney) When afternoon came around we dragged ourselves off the sofa and Maxwell and I cleaned ourselves up then bid our friends goodbye. We treated ourselves to a drink and some dinner at The Powder Keg (a lovely little find) So there you have it… that’s how we all saw in the new year… how about you??

Now on to the new year…. and my resolutions for 2017:

I don’t know if I mentioned this last year but in 2016 (because of saving for the wedding and to just see if I could) I didn’t buy myself anything (clothes, shoes, accessories etc) bar wedding related items and a coat at the very end of the year, I did just what I set out to do. This proved to me a simple thing, that I didn’t need to buy anything new. Sure, I could probably do with some more tights and socks now but I really didn’t need or want for anything. This way of thinking, I think, will stick with me, and is something I want to continue into 2017. The world of disposable fashion is bigger then ever and if I can do my little bit and not buy into it then that’s got to be a good thing right?! It also means then when I do get something new I will really treasure and appreciate it!

I have also made a promise to be kind to myself and my body. The way I speak about it, think about it and what I feed and do to it! I began last year a slow and steady mini body overhaul/confidence mission and I continue with that in 2017. To be thankful for the gift that my body gives to me, wobbly bits and all. To be proud of it as it is, and if it does “improve” well that’s great too! I also want to continue with filling it with healthy and nourishing food and plenty of water, to not deny myself the things I want and the occasional treat, but equally to not over-indulge or do anything to the excess!! I’m going to also try and cut back on the alcohol and meat, because thats good for you too (plus I fell in love with a vegetarian with only one kidney so it kind of helps)

Next up is a simple one, and ties in nicely with the above. I’m going to try and stop feeling guilty about relaxing! I have a weird habit of chilling out, reading a book or something, and when someone comes in, I stop and try and make it look like I’m busy or something… I think ties in with being self employed and working from home. Whatever the reason I’m going to try and stop. To chill out with a book for an hour or two is ok. It’s my life and as long as I can pay the bills, on my days off, if I feel I need a bit of TLC and want to loose myself in a film or a book I’m going to do just that (and not feel guilty about it)

I also want to try and distance myself from my phone more. After watching this clip (which if you’ve not watched you should) I realised I’m guilty of using my phone too much and scrolling without even thinking about it. So I’ve made a little pact with myself to not be so attached to it; to not check it the moment I wake up, to sometimes just put it away and look out the window and generally just use it less!

Finally to keep working towards my goals and the things that mean most to me… the wedding, my business, our first real home, my relationship, my friendships. I believe you get out of life what you put into it so with this in mind I will approach all these things with passion, enthusiasm and zest!

So there you have it, my resolutions and ambitions for 2017. I know already, regardless of what happens it will always be a special year in my life, the one when I finally become a wife! How very exciting!!