Thursday, 23 July 2015

Fabfrocks for Mamas: Summer ice lolly craft for toddlers

Hi guys,
Breaking what has been the longest blog hiatus I have ever taken, I just had to share these super-cute photos of Wilbur and I brightening up today's rainy day with some crafty time at home.

I've been itching to start blogging again for a while, but the pressures of all the freelance work I've been doing just took over, and I didn't have the time to fit in work, being a good mummy and a hobby as well. What's more, fashion isn't as important to me as it used to be: working from home and having a toddler means I tend to wear a one-size-fits all mum uniform, and whilst I still love clothes, it doesn't consume my every waking moment the way it used to. But I still want to document what I do, and what I love, and my occasional fashion thoughts and obsessions, so I thought I'd give it another shot! So here are the results of our messy, fun creativity session:
After making a mess with lots of paint and painting our hands, our next task was to make some paper ice lollies to decorate some homemade birthday cards. I cut out all of the different lolly shapes and details (striped, spots, chocolate toppings  - as you can see, the pink spots were a firm favourite in our house) and then let Wilbur mix and match to create his favourite lollies and construct them. It really was as easy as that, but the results look great (although maybe not as polished as they would have been if they were created by an older child)
If you have some lolly sticks that would look even better (mine are cut out of beige paper) and hundreds and thousands would also have looked great, rather than the glitter, but I was worried about them becoming discoloured by the glue. Overall though, this is the perfect summertime craft that can be done by kids of any age. As an added bonus, it means we've made a start on cards for all of those summer holiday birthday parties we have coming up!

Love Tor x

Friday, 13 February 2015

Primark's Spring New Season Accessories

Hi guys,
The evenings are getting lighter, the temperatures are warming up, and although it's only February, there are definitely days where it feels like Spring is on its way. I am quite vocal about my dislike of summer dressing: no layers, lots of sweat, and all the prettiest dresses simply aren't designed for ladies that need to wear a more structured bra with thicker bra straps.Tran-seasonal dressing, where I can layer up and be a little more experimental, however I love! So I couldn't be more excited for spring to arrive so that I can shake off my coat and pop on a jacket, and that excitement was piqued when I saw these great new season accessories from Primark:
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 photo primark accessories 3_zpsu40qoada.jpg photo primark accessories 4_zpsf6rvnoi1.jpgMetallic sandals, £7: Floral shoes, £10: Floral patterned sandals, £12: Silver bag, £6: Punch detail bag, £8. 

The pared back and minimalist 90s really aren't going anywhere this season, and those metallic sandals are perfect for working with that. Primark also still seem to be channeling a more grungy '90s style too, both with their accessories but especially with their fashion ranges. I actually had a version of that silver camera-case style bag back in my school days (mine was black) and I thought I was the bees knees! Although I do love Primark (I've tried to give up my Primark shopping addiction but it keeps pulling me back) I've never really paid much attention to their accessories offerings: I only every buy leather accessories and generally don't buy high street shoes and bags at all. However some of these cotton pieces in particular would be great for occasional use or for packing away and taking on holiday. Yet another thing to look out for when I next indulge myself with a cheap shopping binge: Primark, you've gone and done it again!

Love Tor x

Thursday, 12 February 2015

Don't forget Valentine's Day.....

Hi guys,
It always amazes me just how many people forget Valentine's day each year - not because I think everyone should celebrate it, simply because it is shoved down our throats from every angle! Every advert on TV, every shop with hearts and flowers in the window, every second press release I've recieved for a month...You might not like it, or choose to celebrate it, but you certainly can't forget it!
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I'm not big on Valentine's spending, and some of the press releases for suggested gifts I've received this year are, frankly, weird (coca cola baseball cape or extra thick welly socks, anyone?) but I have made little bags of goodies for my two lovely gentlemen: love heart sweets, gummy sweets, and cookie pops adorned with stereotypical love hearts popped into clear bags and tied up with a ribbon. Each bag cost around £1.50 to make and they'll be gone by Saturday lunchtime, but I just think this holiday, of all holidays, really shouldn't be about money and spending.
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I hear a lot of people say that they don't believe in Valentine's day because they don't need one day to tell someone that they love them. Lucky them! I love Mike very much. But frankly, when you both have busy jobs and a toddler running around, an occasion that reminds you to take some time out from the seemingly endless stream of things to do and spend some time together is also very welcome.

I'll be spending my Valentine's Day at the cinema watching this season's most hotly anticipated new release which so far has received rave reviews.....you guessed it: Peppa Pig and The Golden Boots! Wilbur has been looking forward to it for weeks. But as I'll be watching it with my two favourite people in the whole world (and my two valentine's) I couldn't think of anything better!

Love Tor x

Monday, 2 February 2015

Fabfrocks for Mamas: Sick toddlers, working for myself and more!

Hi guys,
This week has been a difficult week in the Fabfrocks household. Last Monday I took Wilbur to the doctors with what I thought was a nasty cold, only to find myself in the children's ward of the local hospital an hour later. My little man had acute bacterial tonsilitis which had caused a dangerously high temperature and left his heart rate beating much too fast. He looked very small sitting in his hospital bed, and scared the living daylights out of his mummy and daddy!
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From the minute we had our first scan to the moment he was born and on a semi-regular basis ever since, we remember to be thankful that Wilbur is a healthy and happy boy. (Definitely not taking that for granted) What that means though is that when he's poorly, it hits you like a ton of bricks! He was soon home with his antibiotics and being as demanding as you would expect an unwell two year old to be. In real terms that equated to sleepless nights (and when he did sleep, it was on mummy on the sofa, meaning that I didn't sleep) lots of cuddles and attention, plenty of fetching and carrying, and absolutely no opportunity to do any work (because Wilbur couldn't go to nursery and didn't want to be without his mummy for a moment!)


I love working for myself, but this week I was reminded of the obvious drawbacks. When you work for yourself, you can't just take a couple of days off: client deadlines need to be met, there's no one to pick up the slack for you, and when you don't work you don't get paid. That meant working late into the night and in every available snatched moment to get everything done and not let anyone down.

Basically the point of this post is that poorly kids are hard work, man! Especially when you have other commitments and other people depending on you. I think 'work at home mums' are an often ignored group in the working mum/stay at home mum debate. My mummy friends often tell me how lucky I am to have the best of both worlds because I get to do the job I love and I never miss out on any of Wilbur's key moments: we play everyday, I take him swimming and to his dance classes, we paint and go on play dates.

Most of the time I feel lucky. I do have the best of both worlds, but it comes at a price, such as having to work long and peculiar hours to ensure that my working doesn't impact on Wilbur's life too much. But this week I think I probably experienced the worse of both worlds too.....

Luckily Wilbur is on the mend now, and back to his normal self. Let normal service resume!

Love Tor x

Tuesday, 27 January 2015

Last Chance: Up to 70% off in the final French Connection clearance sale

Hi guys,
I've been very lapse with my sale shopping updates, but I just couldn't resist a peak at the final clearance sale from French Connection. With discounts of up to 70% there are some incredible bargains to be had across both fashion and home ware.

I love French Connection: it is one of my go to shops for evening wear, but their casual day wear is gorgeous too and perfect for smartening up my mummy act! Here are some picks from the best of the final clearance sale online:
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Wilderness collar shirt (was £75 now £25)
Paisley crepe party dress (was £120 now £36) 

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French frou frou dress (was £160 now £48)
Misty mountain top (£65 to £32.50)

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Romeo stretch fitted jacket (was £145 now £101.50)
Atlantic wave flared dress (was £190 now £57)

The thing I most like about all of these pieces (and a lot of the French Connection collections) are that they are relatively seasonless: I tend to wear the same clothes all year round, adding layers rather than introducing a whole new wardrobe. (with the exception of the height of the summer, when staying cool becomes the order of the day and anything goes!) But you could definitely buy all of the picks above and wear them well into spring: a much smarter way of sale shopping than buying a coat or boots that will only get a month's worth of wear!

I especially love the vibrant red shrunken blazer. A blazer with jeans and a crepe tee or chiffon blouse is pretty much my go to outfit: a wear a variation of it everyday, all year round. This seasonless piece could be worn for work wear, casual wear, or could even be thrown over a frock for laid back evening wear: definitely what I'd pick if I could only choose one thing!

Have you had any sales bargains? Are there any shops you've found have been incredible this sales season?

Love Tor x