Thursday, 25 April 2013

Loving Diane von Furstenberg's Collection for BabyGap

Hot of the press! I was super-excited to discover a magical email in my inbox this morning. Diane von Furstenberg's collection for BabyGap has finally launched! It's a gorgeous collection of Diane's signature pieces, all shrunk down to baby girl size. With fabulous prints, wrap dresses and printed denim, you'll want to buy every piece for your little one. I just wish she'd created a range for baby boys as well!


{Product Credits} Top L-R 1. Printed Romper, £17.95 | 2. Diaper Bag, £79.95 | 3. Pleated tank dress £29.95 | 4. Graphic Body Suit, £14.95 | Bottom L-R 1. Graphic Body Suit, £14.95  | 2. Wrap Romper, £24.95 | 3. Printed Leggings, £9.95  £ | 4. Graphic Body Suit, £14.95 |

More posts like this one:
Patriotic London Themed Baby Clothes
BabyGap Beatrix Potter Collection

Like this post? Sign up for the Before the Baby newsletter by email or RSS.

Monday, 22 April 2013

Easy DIY With Animal Magic Wrapping Paper

There's nothing like spotting a product that gives you a burst of DIY energy, and this wrapping paper from Rosehip Paper & Home made my fingers itch. They're such fabulous prints, that they'd look right at home as framed artwork in your nursery. Or you could line your children's drawers with alternating colours. Or stencil letter shapes, cut them out, stick them on card and create a framed name picture. Each sheet costs £1.50. P.S. I buy all my frames from Ikea, they're super-cheap, and they even deliver certain sizes!




More posts like this one:
DIY Alphabet Plates
✽ DIY Baby Shower Invitations

Like this post? Sign up for the Before the Baby newsletter by email or RSS.

Friday, 19 April 2013

Gorgeous Retro-Style Pedal Push Cars....Boats & Planes

My husband can't wait for our little boy to grow up, so that we can buy him one of these adorable retro-style pedal push cars. We could almost buy one now - they're pretty enough to be purely decorative. Some of them {like the Porsche} are seriously expensive, but my favourite - the Baghera Retro plane, is £82 on Amazon. Definitely worth splashing out for Christmas or a birthday.

{Product Credits} Top L-R 1. Baghera Retro Grey Plane, £82 2. Red Monaco Pedal Car, £123.34 | 3. Baghera Push-along Police Car, £74 | Middle L-R 1. Green Pedal Car, £183.47 | 2. Blue Baghera Monthlery Metal Car, £182 |  3. Silver Porsche 356 Pedal Car, £239.99 | 4. Baghera Riverside White and Blue, £113 | Bottom L-R 1. Marquant Vintage Kids Pedal Car Fire Truck, £82.90 | 2. Baghera Black Racer, £64 | 3. Baghera Speedster Silver, £74


More posts like this one:
King of the Castle

Like this post? Sign up for the Before the Baby newsletter by email or RSS.


Thursday, 18 April 2013

Five Favourite Baby Announcement Cards

Most of our friends and family will hear about the birth of our baby via immediate text message, and they'll be able to spot pictures on Facebook or Instagram. But what about the more elderly family? I'm really keen to include them in the excitement, so I've been looking at buying or DIY-ing baby announcement cards. It looks like in the US, families send them out to everyone they know, and there are varying degrees of saccharine pictures and poems. While I'll be keen to include a picture of the new baby, I don't want it to be the front design of the card. Here are five of my favourite baby announcement cards, what do you think? Did you, or are you going to send out cards? P.S. If you want to print photographs of your baby, you can get 50 free prints from several online services.

{Product Credit} Duckling Birth Announcement Card by Ditto Ditto Works, £.94

{Product Credit} Baby Announcement Card by Suzie's Cards, £2

{Product Credit} Baby Birth Announcement Card by Little Darlings UK, 10 for £14


{Product Credit} Personalised Baby Announcement CardsRuth Duck Blue, 10 for £17.45
{Product Credit} Unknown

More posts like this one:
✽ My Pregnancy Diary
DIY Baby Shower Cards

Like this post? Sign up for the Before the Baby newsletter by email or RSS.

Wednesday, 17 April 2013

Baby Friendly Holidays & Hotels

Throughout the last few months of my pregnancy, all I could think about were holidays! The combination of not being able to go away, plus the miserable spring, meant I spent hours planning our next summer break. The big difference will be that this time, we'll have a baby! So I was thrilled to discover my favourite boutique hotel website, Mr & Mrs Smith, have come up with a list of family-friendly hotels. Some of them are seriously smart - who'd have thought The Connaught would welcome children! But they're not the only company to cotton on to the value of the parent pound, there's also Baby Friendly Boltholes. So if you're looking for babysitting on site, meal deliveries, play areas and baby equipment as well as those all-important spa treatments, you know where to look! Personally, I'd like to go here.




More posts like this one:
✽ My Pregnancy Diary

Like this post? Sign up for the Before the Baby newsletter by email or RSS.

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Large Creature Storage Boxes

Tidying up the nursery will be a pleasure with these brilliant boxes. They're both fun and practical, and make me smile! Each animal comes as two separate boxes (head plus body) with a combined height of 76cm {without ears!}, and you can choose from four characters: Growly Bear, Scaredy Bunny, Sheriff Bee or Chicky D. Created by Pango Productions, you can buy them for £25 via fab design website Bouf.



More posts like this one:
Five Favourite Nursery Illustrators
The Best Children's Bookshelves

Like this post? Sign up for the Before the Baby newsletter by email or RSS.

Monday, 15 April 2013

La Grande Famille Farmyard French Toys

Is it true that adults like different toys to children? I have a feeling that the stuffed toys I like the most will be discarded by my son in favour of brightly coloured monstrosities made out of velour. But while he's too small to choose, I'm going to fill his nursery with beautiful, traditional soft toys like these 'La Grande Famille' animals from French company, Moulin Roty. I love their long limbs and their farmyard theme! Buy them from UK retailer Little Tiger Gifts.



Product Credits {clockwise from top left} 1. Tiny Felicie Hen, £14 | 2. Little Charlotte Cow, £20 | 3. Tiny Jeanne Goose, £14 | 4. Little Nini Mouse, £20, 5. Tiny Albert Lamb, £14 | 6. Little Amedee Duck, £19 | 7. Tiny Philemon Pig, £14

More posts like this one:
Easter Bunny Toys
Soft Toy Ideas

Like this post? Sign up for the Before the Baby newsletter by email or RSS.

Friday, 12 April 2013

Loving Baby Joules' Fabulous Spring Prints

Until one of my friends gave me this amazing lion-print sleeping bag as a baby shower present, I hadn't heard of Baby Joules, but now I'm addicted! Joules is known for their colourful clothes, and they've got the best prints for summer, with gorgeous collections for baby boys and girls. Here are a few of my favourite finds.


Product Credits {top L-R} 1. Baby Girls Baby Grow Pink, £18.95 | 2. Ditsy Baby Girls Welly, £19.95 | 3. Baby Girls Long Sleeve Top & Trouser Set, £26.95 | 4. Ditsy Baby Girls Dungarees, £22.95 | {bottom L-R} 5. Ditsy Baby Girls Sweatshirt, £24.95 | 6. Baby Girls Ribbon Baby Grow, £18.95 | 7. Creme Spot Baby Girl Hat, £6.95



Product Credits {top L-R} 1. Baby Boys Baby Nipper Set, £24.95 | 2. Baby Boys Striped Hat, £6.95 | 3. Baby Boys Long Sleeve Top & Trouser Set, £26.95 | 4. Baby Boys Striped Welly, £19.95 | {bottom L-R} 5. Baby Boys Anchor Baby Grow, £18.95 | 6. Baby Boys Dungarees, £22.95 | 7. Baby Boys Breton Top, £12.95

More posts like this one:
✽ Nautical Themed Baby Clothes
✽ Cool Print Baby Clothes

Like this post? Sign up for the Before the Baby newsletter by email or RSS.

Thursday, 11 April 2013

Brilliant Baby Bird In Socks

I fell in love with this gorgeous baby bird the moment I spotted him on Etsy! There's something about his tremendous beak and giant socked feet, that is both hilarious and cute at the same time. Individually handmade out of new and vintage fabrics, he and his family are created by Timo-Handmade in Israel. He counts bunnies and mice amongst his friends, and they're each as lovely as the next.


 More posts like this one:
Bunny Toys For Your Baby
✽ Cute Colourful Cuddly Octopus

Like this post? Sign up for the Before the Baby newsletter by email or RSS.

Wednesday, 10 April 2013

How To Exercise While You're Pregnant

Alice at 40 weeks
This is a guest post from my friend, Alice Cowen. She's a personal trainer to the stars, and recently gave birth to her own baby boy, Indigo. Here's her first post about exercising while you're pregnant!

If you'd like more information about personal training with Alice {via Skype - ideal for new mothers at home}, or her amazing Bootique exercise retreats in Mallorca, take a look at her blog and Facebook page.

You need to exercise throughout pregnancy to maintain
* strength * flexibility * endurance *

Low impact exercise is the best for you
* swimming * walking * yoga * aqua-natal classes *

If you've not been very active before your pregnancy, then check with your midwife or GP that it's safe for you to start doing it now.


While you're exercising
* keep hydrated
* avoid high impact activity, running or contact sports
* keep your pulse below 140 bpm
* avoid over stretching yourself - exercising for 20 minutes, 3 times a week is plenty

STOP exercising if you overheat, feel tired, unwell, or feel any pain.


How to exercise your tummy muscles 
Your tummy muscles protect your back and support your growing baby. As these muscles stretch they become weaker. Exercise helps maintain strength which will make it easier for you to keep a good posture.

Avoid exercises such as sit ups, but gentle tummy exercises can help relieve backache, such as this one.....
* Start off sitting comfortably, supported with pillows
* Breathe in, and as you breathe out, pull in the low abdominal muscles underneath your bump
* Relax
* And repeat 5 to 10 times, twice a day

You can do this exercise on all-fours as well.....
* Keep your back flat in order to avoid rounding and hollowing
* Breath in, and as you breath out pull your abdominal muscles up

Pelvic Floor muscles are also very important to strengthen, but we will go into that another day.

xaLx

More posts like this one:
My Hospital Bag List for Labour
Alice's Bootique Blog

Like this post? Sign up for the Before the Baby newsletter by email or RSS.

Tuesday, 9 April 2013

Ingenious Animal Nursery Storage

This fantastic range of children's storage ideas from 3Sprouts comes highly recommended by a friend of mine, Georgia of Very Fine Animals. Her little girl has several of these animal boxes, and Georgia says they're amazingly cavernous, and useful for speedy tidying. Also, I couldn't resist featuring their range of animal towels - aren't they sweet! I love the padded noses. 3Sprouts is based in the US, but you can buy their range from Dotty Hippo - another brilliant find.




More posts like this one:
Five Favourite Nursery Illustrators
The Best Children's Bookshelves

Like this post? Sign up for the Before the Baby newsletter by email or RSS.

Monday, 8 April 2013

Pretty Perfect Moustache Baby Blankets

Moustaches are a hugely popular motif in the blogging world. Creative types are adding them to all sorts of homeware, they're a great theme for a little boy baby shower, and stick-on 'taches are regularly given as wedding favours {we handed them out at our wedding!}. To be honest, I'd got a bit bored of the look, until I discovered these pretty pastel baby blankets from LittleHipSqueaks. They're handmade by mum-of-one, Amy Richardson, out of organic cotton jersey, and have the feel of your favourite t-shirt. Amy designs all her own fabrics, and makes super-cute newborn hats and headbands as well.



More posts like this one:
✽ The Best Swaddling Wraps & Muslins
Nursery Essentials

Like this post? Sign up for the Before the Baby newsletter by email or RSS.

Friday, 5 April 2013

Colourful Felt Nursery Bunting Decoration

Add a touch of colour to your nursery or playroom with this cute and colourful felt bunting. There's something about its rainbow charm that's made me want to buy it, even though I'm planning a soft blue theme for my baby boy's nursery. Made in the UK by Charmaine of Little Nest Box, each banner is handmade, and can be completely customised. Charmaine also creates pretty crib mobiles, so it's well worth checking out her site!

 More posts like this one:
✽ Five Favourite Nursery Illustrators
Nursery Ideas

Like this post? Sign up for the Before the Baby newsletter by email or RSS.

Thursday, 4 April 2013

Three Cosy Baby Knits For Beating The Cold

As this cold snap continues {where is spring???}, I've realised that when my baby is born, I'm going to need winter clothes for him. I thought it was all going to be calico and bodysuits, but clearly some serious insulation is going to be necessary for the first few weeks. After a lovely virtual stroll around Etsy - my go-to online marketplace for original baby clothes - I stumbled on these adorable woolly pixie hats from Deusprovidebit. They're not just pretty to look at, the shop owners, Gramma Harv and Kerry, have come up with the most amazing colour names - amongst others, you can choose from Silver Gray & Sweet Pea Green, Pink Poodle & Goldfish Orange, Burgundy & Dusty Green. Which would you pick?


I also fell in love with these wool baby legwarmers by Zoik, £12.


And this gorgeous cosy cardigan by Flower Girl Knits, £27.



More posts like this one:
Cute & Cosy Onesies
Eyes & Ears Baby Hats

Like this post? Sign up for the Before the Baby newsletter by email or RSS.

Wednesday, 3 April 2013

Introducing Stuffster For Your Baby Wishlists

As we prepared for the arrival of our little boy, we couldn't believe how much stuff we would need to buy. The lists of nursery essentials are endless, and costs can really add up, particularly if {like me}, you have a love of luxury items {hello Stokke Xplory V3 pram!}. So I was thrilled to discover this amazing shopping website called Stuffster, which helps you find the cheapest price for any product that you want to buy online. There's three super-simple steps to follow...


1. Create a visual wish list on Stuffster {they call them StuffBoards} where you can add any product from any website in the world
2. Set a budget and a target price that you're happy to pay for each item
3. Sit back, and wait for a Stuffster email to ping into your inbox alerting you somewhere on the web the price has fallen to what you're happy to pay.


It's a great way to organise everything that you need to buy for your baby, and even better, it saved me a fortune. Also, when my friends and family asked me what they could buy for my baby shower, I could choose to share my Baby Shower StuffBoard {see pic above} with them, so they could make savings too. It's a completely free service, so definitely worth trying out!

More posts like this one:

✽ The Essential Baby List
My Hospital Bag List

Like this post? Sign up for the Before the Baby newsletter by email or RSS.

Tuesday, 2 April 2013

My Hospital Bag List for Labour - For The Baby

Time for Part 2 of My Hospital Bag List for labour. In my previous blog posting I talked all about the items I've packed for myself, and now it's time for the baby's list! I'm pretty sure I've packed far too much stuff, but since I've no idea how long I'm going to have to stay in hospital, I thought it better safe than sorry. Fingers crossed I'll be able to leave six hours after the baby's born, but I won't know until the day. Having no real knowledge of newborn babies, I've found this bag the hardest to pack, so I'll keep you informed as to whether I'd make any changes after the event! View Part 1 of My Hospital Bag List for Labour here.

Hospital Bag for Baby
1. Three sets of baby clothes, including body suits, sleeps suits & cardigans
2. Three hats
3. Three muslins {star pattern bought from Mothercare}
4. Baby blanket {my yellow one was hand-knitted by my mother-in-law!}
5. Star baby bundler {for easy night-time nappy changes}
6. Cosy pramsuit {I didn't think I'd need this, but it's so cold at the moment!}
7. Three Bibs {star pattern bought from Mothercare}
8. Newborn nappies
9. Cotton wool
10. Baby wipes
11. Nappy sacks
12. Nasal aspirator
13. Baby nail clippers & scissors
14. Maxi Cosi car seat {not pictured

More posts like this one:
✽ First Day of Maternity Shopping
✽ The Startup Wife's Hospital Bag

Like this post? Sign up for the Before the Baby newsletter by email or RSS.


My Hospital Bag List for Labour - For Me

Packing your hospital bag for giving birth is reassuring for a whole range of reasons. It gives your nesting brain something to do, it focuses your mind on the type of labour you want to have, and it makes you feel ready! I found the majority of my list on the iPhone App called Pregnancy ++ {hugely recommended}, and then I added recommendations from several friends. I'm sure I've packed too much, so after I give birth, I'll do an update on what I did or didn't need!

Hospital Bag for Labour
1. Maternity Tankini from Figleaves {for the birthing pool}
2. One night shirt for labour {very cheap from Primark, buy from eBay if you haven't got a store near you}
3. Three sets of pyjamas {in case I have to stay for a few days}
4. Slip-on slippers
5. Cosy Donna Wilson bed socks {my friend Alice of Bootique blog says she got cold feet during labour}
6. Two maternity bras from H&M Mama
7. Two maternity vest-tops from H&M Mama
8. Dressing gown
9. iPad & Kindle, iPhone & headphones
10. Cereal bars & coconut milk {not pictured}
11. V-shaped pillow {not pictured}
12. Ear plugs {in case the ward is noisy}




Toiletries Bag for Labour
1. Luxurious Blossom & Berry massage oil
2. Dextro Energy tablets {for a sugar hit during labour}
3. Straws for easy drinking
4. Hair bands
5. Lip Balm {apparently your lips get dry during labour}
6. My favourite perfume {Clarins Eau Dynamisante}
7. Tissues
8. Maternity pads
9. Disposable knickers
10. Moist Toilet Tissue
11. Tommee Tippee Disposable Breast pads
12. Avent Nipple Protectors
13. Lansinoh Lanolin Nipple Cream
14. Hand sanitiser {for visitors!}
15. Clarins shower gel {for a feeling of luxury after labour}
16. Face wipes
17. Normal toiletries like Toothbrush & Toothpaste, Deodorant, Shampoo, Conditioner, Moisturieser
18. Trofolastin Firming Post-Partum {I hugely recommend Trofolastin products, their anti-stretchmark cream worked for me!}

Other Items You Might Want
1. Massage balls
2. Handheld fan if it's summer
3. TENS machine

More posts like this one:
First Day of Maternity Shopping
The Startup Wife's Hospital Bag

Like this post? Sign up for the Before the Baby newsletter by email or RSS.

Monday, 1 April 2013

Vintage-Style Baby Bloomers

As I prepare for my baby's arrival, my eyes have been opened to the creative world of children's clothing. Some of the most enchanting pieces are eye-wateringly expensive, but occasionally you can find pieces that are more than worth that little bit extra. For babies, I'm particularly keen on old-fashioned style clothing, like this range by boutique Etsy seller Nana Bugz. Handmade by mother-daughter duo, Donna and Elena, these seersucker bubble rompers are adorable, and they come in at under £20 each. Perfect for lazy summer days by the beach.


More posts like this one:
Nautical Themed Baby Clothes
Cool Print Baby Clothes

Like this post? Sign up for the Before the Baby newsletter by email or RSS.