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5 Ways to give up the old baby clothes
(even if you really don’t want to!)

When Jasmine was just 4 months old I wrote this post about how I was finding it hard to get rid of her outgrown baby clothes. As we had always planned to have two children I was able to justify hanging on to them for our next baby. Well, now our ‘next’ (and last) baby is here and is growing out of those clothes just as rapidly as Jasmine did. Despite the girls being born in different seasons (damn it) we’ve still managed to re-use lots of vests and sleepsuits for Elowen. Trouble with that is, now it’s doubly hard for this sentimental mama to get rid of them! We’re done having babies so I can’t use that excuse to keep them anymore.

In the next few months we’re going to be moving to our new home and with that in mind I’ve slowly been working my way through the house to declutter each room. I don’t want to take all of our old junk with us to our new house so I’m binning stuff, recycling it or giving it away to charity and so far I’m doing really well. But those teeny, tiny baby clothes? Well they’ve been a little harder to ditch.

That said, I am still getting rid of the old baby clothes (even though I really don’t want to).

Here’s 5 ways you can do it too…

1) Choose just one item as a momento.

Babies grow quickly and before you know it they’ll be at school, college, moving out, getting married… having babies of their own. It will be hard to believe they were ever tiny enough to hold in your my arms. So, let’s allow ourselves one little keepsake, yes? I’ve picked one item of clothing for each of the girls (the sleepsuits they first wore when they were born) and I’ve put them into their keepsake boxes. That way I can still get them out every now and again, when I’m feeling sentimental, and marvel at how small my girls once were. Keeping a couple items of clothing made it much easier for me to get rid of the rest.

2) Turn them into something useful

If you can’t pick just one item of clothing to keep then why not turn that bundle of old baby clothing into something useful? A quilt, for example. Don’t worry if you don’t have a crafty bone in your body (although, props to ya if you can make one yourself) there’s lots of talented people out there who can make a quilt for you and it won’t cost you as much as you might think.

3) Give the clothes to those who need them more.

I always find it’s easier to give things away that I have a sentimental attachment to if they’re going to people who really need them. It’s hard to justify keeping bags full of unused baby clothes in the loft when they could be passed onto families who have nothing. Perhaps you could find out if your local Women’s Refuge are accepting donations of children’s clothes. Or give them to a charity shop which supports a cause close to your heart. Either way, giving your beloved baby clothes to those who need them will give you that feel-good factor. Hopefully it will dampen any sadness you have about getting rid of them in the first place.

4) Sell them… and then put the money towards making memories with your babies.

Part of the reason I find it hard to get rid of the girls’ clothes is because of the memories attached to them. But what about using them to help you make more memories? I’ve sold some of the ‘fancier’ items of clothing using my local Facebook selling page. With the money I’ve got from that I started a ‘holiday fund’. OK so we’re not going to be jetting off to Disney World any time soon but it’ll be spending money we can use on our holiday to Butlins later this year. So yeah, that few quid for an old dress might not seem like much but it’ll pay for us to have fish and chips on the beach or a couple of goes on a fairground ride.

5) Swap them!

As I mentioned earlier, my girls were born in two very different seasons so a lot of Jasmine’s old clothes aren’t appropriate for us to reuse for Elowen. But there’s gonna be plenty of mamas out there who kept their firstborn’s clothes for baby no.2 and also had their second baby in a different season. So scout them out! Ask around your baby groups or your local Facebook selling pages and find yourself a mama to swap baby clothes with. You might even be able to swap them for other items such as age appropriate toys for your little ones. Everyone’s a winner. :)

I really hope you’ve found this post useful. 

If there’s another way of parting with my little ladies’ threads that I haven’t thought of, I’d love to hear it? 

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You Baby Me Mummy
Baby, Home, Lifestyle

My ‘Stars & Clouds’ Nursery Wishlist

I’ll be honest with you all, Baby No.2’s nursery is merely a figment of my imagination, at least for now anyway. We are planning to move house and relocate back to Bristol early next year (yay!) so for the time being Baby Button-Nose will not have a room of their own. (Ahh, poor second born!) But hey, it’s all good because he/she will be rooming with the ‘rents (Stephen and I) until they’re at least 6 months old.

When I was pregnant with Jasmine, I spent a lot of time creating her ‘Little Red Riding Hood’ inspired nursery. It was one of the more enjoyable aspects of my pregnancy and I’m still really proud of how her room turned out. This time around I’m thinking of creating a little ‘nursery corner’ in our bedroom – a small but beautiful space for our baba.

I’ve noticed that I’ve definitely been drawn to a certain theme when looking at items for nursery decor – stars and clouds.

I thought I’d share some of the items on my wishlist:

somewhere-to-sleep

The Chicco Next to Me (in Silver) – £165

With Jasmine we hired a Bednest for the first 6 months of her life, which means we don’t have a bedside crib to reuse for Baby BN. I had been considering buying a Snuzpod or a Chicco Next to Me and, after seeing them both in the flesh at our local Mothercare, I now have my heart set on the Next to Me crib in silver. (You’ll notice a bit of a grey/silver theme going on!)

star-cushions

Polka Dot Pastel Star Cushion from Sass & Belle – £13.00

How adorable are these star cushions? I think I’d pick the grey but all three of the pastel colours are gorgeous.

blankie

Meyco Cotton Baby Blanket (Amazon) – £29.99

I can just imagine our little bubba being snuggled up under this stunning cloud blanket. It’s made with soft brushed cotton and is breathable, meaning there’s minimal risk of overheating. It’s machine washable which is super important where babies are involved. They are messy little critters!

This blanket is also available in Mint, Pink and Blue.

cloud-print

Cloud illustration poster from Desenio -£7.99 (12×16″)

I’m all about the finishing touches when it comes to nursery decor. I think they are truly what makes a beautiful space… well, beautiful. This super cute cloud print from Desenio is a brilliant example. I think it would fab on the wall in Baby BN’s ‘nursery corner’. Tying my stars and clouds theme together perfectly.

mobiles

  1. Cloud, stars and Moon Mobile from Velveteen Babies – £72.00
  2. Songe Musical Mobile from Maisons Du Monde – £34.99

I have an obsession with baby mobiles which is probably why I’ve ended up sharing two of them on my wishlist.

1 – You must, MUST check out the range of mobiles available from Velveteen Babies. They are all “carefully and lovingly created by hand from start to finish.” I was lucky enough to win this particular mobile through an Instagram competition and I can tell you now, they are even more stunning in real life! It’s also probably what started my fascination with cloud nursery decor.

2 – I love the simplicity of this grey and white musical mobile from Maisons Du Monde. I think it would make such a lovely baby shower gift. This mobile is currently unavailable to buy (boo!) but according to the website, more are due back in stock soon (yay)!

cloud-light

Sass and Belle LED Cloud Light available from ASOS – £20.00

I’m. In. Love.

I just cannot think of anything more perfect to complete Baby BN’s cloud and star themed nursery corner. The light is freestanding and battery powered (x2 AAs) which means it could sit on my bedside table and be used as a nightlight during those 4am feeds!

And that brings me to the end of my ‘Stars and Clouds’ nursery wishlist. If you fancy a bit more nursery inspo – take a look at my post about Jasmine’s Little Red Riding Hood themed nursery:

jasmines-nursery-tour

You can also check out these nursery decor wishlists from two fellow mama-to-be bloggers – Emma and Debbie:

nursery-picks-emma

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I’d love to know – what’s your favourite item on my wishlist?

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Toddler wish list: Play shops and accessories
Home, Shopping, Toddler, Toddler Wish LIst

A Toddler Wish List:
Our favourite play shops & accessories

Jasmine’s current obsession at the moment is playing ‘shopkeeper’. It’s so lovely to watch her develop a love for imaginative and role play games . This has meant that I’ve found myself googling ‘toy shops’ as I think it would make the perfect Christmas gift for her (yes, I’m thinking about Christmas already). I’ve come across quite a few lovely play shops for sale in range of prices to suit every pocket. I thought I’d show you some of the ones I really love the look of… plus some the play shop accessories that caught my eye too!

I found myself steering clear of plastic toy shops as I personally prefer classic-style wooden toys. Don’t get me wrong – some of Jasmine’s favourite toys are plastic and we have lots of them (believe me!) but when it comes to bigger items that are going to be on permanent display in my living room – I want them to look nice! ;)

GLTC both

 

Play shop and theatre – GLTC // £112

I’m a huge fan of The Great Little Trading Co so it’s no suprise that their 2-in-1 play shop and theatre is a top contender! I’ve been told by Jasmine’s keyworker at nursery that she really enjoys doing puppet shows with her friends so the fact it can also be turned around and used as a theatre would definitely go down a treat. This item (also available in pink) is currently in the GLTC sale so there’s no better time to buy it.

Oh and you know what else? GLTC’s Play Shop & Theatre has just won PLATINUM for Best Interactive Toy 1-3 yrs in the LovedByParents awards. Pretty impressive!

asda shop

Wooden Cherry Shop & Cafe – George Home // £35

At only £35 this play shop is an absolute steal and it would be particularly ideal if you’re tight on space. I did wonder about the quality of the item, given that it’s such a low price. Although, after reading lots of the reviews, it would seem that many people who have bought this play shop are raving about it!

tidlo 2 in 1

Playshop and theatre – Tidlo // £66.99

One of my favourite wooden toy brands is Tidlo – we had one of their baby walkers for Jasmine and I’m still holding on to it for baby number two! They have also created a 2-in-1 play shop and theatre which is smaller than the GLTC one. I love the little basket shelves and strips of chalkboard to write prices etc.

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SKYLTA – Ikea // £10

Fancy something a bit different? Then check out this awesome cardboard market stall from Ikea. At just £10 it certainly won’t break the bank. I love the the little fold-down shelves and I think little ones could really go to town on making this play shop their own. Draw on it, paint it, use stickers – not only can you use it for imaginative and role play games – it’s a good item to get creative with.

And not forgetting some of my favourite play shop accessory finds…

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1. Wooden Checkout Register – Hape // £18.99

2. Play shopping baskets (set of two) – GLTC // £12.00

3. Wooden shopping trolley – Plan Toys // £49.95

4. Wooden lollies – GLTC // £12.00

access 2

5. Cake stand with 10 cakes – BigJigs // £14.50

6. Food groups play food set – Melissa & Doug // £12.80

7. x2 Wooden milk cartons // £3.45

8. Shop scales // £13.50

All prices are correct at the time of publishing this post.

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Do your little ones enjoy playing shop? 

Which toy shop and accessories do you most like the look of?

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Baking, Food, Home, Lifestyle, Toddler

Popcorn S’more Bars {Recipe}

Half-term, for us, usually means a bit of a slow week – and not in a good way. All of our normal toddler groups don’t run during the school holidays and, if the weather is a bit pants, we quite often end up stuck at home trying to find things to do (besides watch silly amounts of CBeebies).

The last few times that I’ve done a spot of home baking, Jasmine has shown plenty of willing in terms of getting involved. Mixing, stirring, pouring – just show her what to do it and she’ll do it. With this in mind, I decided to do a little mid-week baking session with her (although, technically there was no actual baking involved).

For Christmas, my husband bought me a popcorn maker. He recalled that I had been given one as a birthday present from my mum when I was 12-years-old. These days, the smell of hot popping corn takes me right back to the summer of 1999. It makes me want to stick on a Spice Girls CD and write in my diary about boys I fancy.

Anyway, I totally digress – ever since getting my new popcorn maker for Christmas I’ve been playing around with different recipes that incorporate popcorn – most of which have been of the cupcake variety. However, I decided with the help of my little person, we would set about creating an easy no-bake Popcorn S’more Bar recipe. I’m delighted to say that they turned out rather well. Crunchy, yet chewy and smothered in chocolate – what’s not to like?

Here’s what you’ll need: 

  • Popcorn kernels (if you don’t have a popcorn maker you can use plain shop bought popcorn)
  • 220g Unsalted butter
  • 200g Chocolate
  • 150g Mini marshmallows
  • Digestive biscuits (or any other kind of biscuit that takes your fancy!)

Aside from the marshmallows and butter – the amounts are not an exact science – this really is a “chuck it all in” kinda recipe. It’s up to you how much you want to make!

How to make it:

Check out our video to find out how to make these scrumptious bars that will have you crying out for s’more. (Sorry!)

Don’t forget to subscribe to my YouTube channel for future toddler-friendly recipe ideas. :)

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I am linking this recipe up with two gorgeous ladies who inspired me to get ‘cooking’ with my toddler – Lorraine and Stephanie. Do check out their fabulous new linky: Little Appetites

BabyPebbles
Family, Home, Lifestyle, Photography

The Home Life Photography Project {January 2016}

I’m joining in with Clare’s (Maybush Studio) new ‘Home Life Photography Project’. As soon as I read this post detailing the project, I knew I wanted to take part. I’m always striving to try and take better photos and I personally find candid, every day family life the most interesting subject to photograph.

I must admit, sharing these photos makes me feel quite vulnerable. I’m inviting you into our home to see our cluttered corners, our messy hair (and in my case, make-up-less face), our scruffy clothes and many other less than flattering aspects of our home life! You know, the bits we normally try to hide. ;)

Date photos were taken: Sunday 3rd January 2016

Camera used: Canon G7X

Filters used: VSCO Cam 01

This Sunday was about as ordinary as it gets for us. The last day of the weekend is usually dedicated to ‘chores’ – cleaning out the guinea pig cage, dusting and vacuuming throughout the whole house, meal planning for the week ahead – that kind of stuff. All pretty mundane.

There’s a bit of repetition in this collection because I couldn’t decide between a few of the similar photos. Hopefully with your feedback, I’ll get better at the selection process!

The Home Life Photography Project {January 2016}

The Home Life Photography Project {January 2016}
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The Home Life Photography Project {January 2016}
The Home Life Photography Project {January 2016}
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The Home Life Photography Project {January 2016}
The Home Life Photography Project {January 2016}

The Home Life Photography Project {January 2016}

Initially, I didn’t intend for these photographs to be in black and white. But after playing around with the first few shots and realising a B&W filter masks the bad lighting (it was hideously grey day), I stuck with it.

Which photo is your favourite?

Please leave any constructive criticism in the comments. As I mentioned earlier, I am trying to improve my photography so I really appreciate your feedback.

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Home Life Photography Project
Home, Living Arrows, Photography, Toddler

Winter Gardening {Living Arrows #20}

I can’t quite get over how mild this winter has been so far – my hat, gloves and scarf have all been pretty redundant! But as far as I’m concerned, it can stay like this for a little longer. It’s meant that we’ve been able to get outside a lot more than we normally would in December. On Wednesday, the weather was gloriously mild and sunny but I didn’t fancy the battle of wills that happens between Jasmine and I  every time we go to the park. It goes a bit like this:

Me: “Jasmine it’s time to go home now.”

Jasmine: “NO!”

Me: “Let’s go home and have some lunch.”

Jasmine: “NO!”

and that goes on for a while until I have to drag her, kicking and screaming, out of the park.

Don’t you just love it when they learn the “N” word. o_O

I decided we’d venture out into our (rather neglected) back garden instead and it was actually really lovely.

We spent some time digging in the Vegtrug, re-arranging the gnomes and sweeping the decking. It made me realise how much Jasmine enjoys doing ‘jobs’ around the home, she thrives on those kind of activities. It also made me excited for Spring when she’ll be able to be a bit more involved with growing fruits and veggies.

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You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth.

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7 Fabulous Cleaning Hacks + Bissell Vacuum Giveaway

I make no secret of the fact that I am a complete and utter neat freak. I like my house to be clean, tidy and for everything to be in its place. However, since becoming a mum I have realised that tidying the house to the standard that I used to is a bit like trying to empty the sea with a thimble. It’s impossible. I don’t have the time, energy or inclination to clean that much anymore. These days I have to make do with a quick whizz around the house with a vacuum, and washing our dirty dishes and clothes – anything else is a bonus!

Recently Bissell got in touch with me to tell me about their 7 fabulous cleaning hacks and asked me if I would like to share them on my blog. I hope you find them useful. :)

These tips are super, super clever and I know I’ll definitely be using them in the future:
Cleaning hacks 1cleaning hack 2

As well as sharing their top hack cleaning hacks with you, the folks at Bissell are also kindly giving one of my readers the chance to win a Featherweight™ Pro 2-in-1 Lightweight Vacuum Cleaner worth £39.99. Just enter using the Rafflecopter tool below and tell me what your favourite cleaning hack is.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

TERMS & CONDITIONS:

  • All entries will be checked and verified
  • UK entrants only
  • The vacuum will be dispatched by Bissell – blogger assumes no responsibility for delivery

Good luck! :)

 

 

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Home, Lifestyle

Making a Sleep Nest with Homebase

I recently wrote a post all about how to get a better night’s sleep. One of the tips that I shared in that post was to ‘make your bedroom a sleep nest’. So, when Homebase recently got in touch with me to ask if they could help with a home project, I knew exactly what I wanted to do – make my very own sleep nest!

Getting into bed each night should be a comforting and sensual experience. You’re more likely to get a few more of those early nights if you actually look forward to going to bed. Personally, I can’t wait to jump into bed if I know I have fresh-on clean bed sheets.

Recently, I’ve found myself falling back into bad habits and I’ve been crawling into bed at a ridiculous hour most nights, leaving me exhausted and groggy the next day. By choosing some products from Homebase, I wanted to try and recreate that clean-bed sheet excitement, but for every night. I wanted to turn my bed into a cosy sleep nest that I looked forward to slipping into each night. Somewhere where I’d go and read a book for an hour or so before snuggling down for a good night’s sleep.

My sleep nestFirst up I started with the basics – Pillows! Our original pillows had certainly seen better days, in fact, there wasn’t all that much left of them as they’d been squashed and flattened to within an inch of their lives. So out with the old pillows and in with these Silentnight ‘Feels just like down’ pillows (14.99).

Not only that, I also treated myself to a Silentnight V shape support pillow (£12.99) which I thought would be perfect for when I’m snuggled up in bed reading a book.

my sleep nest

By the way, if you fancy a little bit of bedtime inspiration then I highly recommend The Crossroads of Should and Must by Elle Luna – it’s an excellent read! :)

My sleep nest

With the additions of my cosy new pillows, my bed was already feeling a lot more ‘nest’ like!

At the end of the bed, I added a gorgeous cream throw (£17.99) which is lovely because it adds another texture to my sleep nest! I’ve felt quite chilly in the mornings lately (what’s going on, Summer?!) so it’s been very handy to have an extra layer to snooze under. It’s made from 100% cotton and responds to temperature changes making it perfect for keeping you warm or cool.

cosy cream throwOne thing I really wanted to focus on when creating my sleep nest, was lighting. Lighting is so important for setting the right mood, especially when trying to create a relaxing atmosphere. And what’s the best kind of lighting for creating a tranquil, relaxing atmosphere – fairy lights, of course!

C.I chose these Habitat Mia LED fairy lights (£15.00) to add the wall behind my bed. They give off a warm glow and instantly make the whole room more inviting. The garland has 8 multi-function settings: Combination, steady, in waves, sequential, chasing⁄flash, twinkleflash, slo-glo, slow fade – obviously for the purpose of creating a calm atmosphere I stick to having them on constant.

fairy lightsBut I didn’t stop there with the lighting, oh no! I just couldn’t resist this little colour changing LED heart light…

heart lightYou can also get these sweet little LED lights in the shape of Duck, Square, Ball and Star. And they’re only £2.50 each!

Also, little tip for any parents of wriggly babies/toddlers during nappy changes – give them one of these to hold. Jasmine is OBSESSED with my little heart light. I may have to get a couple more of them!

I think they also would make a great alternative to having candles around the bath too! ;)

And there you have it, my perfect sleep nest!

Sleep nest completeHow would you make your bedroom more of a sleep nest?

Check out my Pinterest board for even more sleep nest inspiration:

Follow Tinyfootsteps Blog {www.tinyfootsteps.co.uk}’s board Cosy bed inspiration on Pinterest.

This post was written in collaboration with Homebase. 

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Home, Lifestyle

My Dressing Table Declutter

I’ve had a love/hate relationship with my dressing table since I bought it a little over two years ago. Firstly, sitting and looking at myself in a mirror is not exactly my favourite pastime. It’s one of the reasons I avoid going to the hairdressers. Small talk and mirrors = two of my least favourite things. *shudders* Anyway, despite my self-loathing (I’m working on fixing this, honest!), the dressing table is the one place in the house that is mine. A little space just for me.

However, in the last few months I’ve been using that little space less and less. It’s become a dumping ground for various beauty products (OK, mostly products that promise to reduce the appearance of dark eye circles, I’ve got them all), notepads, receipts, jewelry etc. etc. – it was a mess!

And then there was the small issue of the slight cosmetic damage (see what I did there?) from when Hubby put the thing together in the first place. He will gladly admit that flatpack furniture isn’t his forte but it didn’t stop me being any less seething when he’d told me he’d broken my dressing table before I’d even had a chance to break it myself. It’s just a small imperfection on the top of the table but it bugs the hell out of me.

On Wednesday I decided that instead of using Jasmine’s nap time to sit on my arse and scroll through my Instagram feed, I’d clear my dressing table of clutter and make it a nice, usable space again. I bought some cheap (as in, less than a quid) brightly coloured room stickers to decorate the table with. I thought it would be a clever way of covering that unsightly chip in the wood, once and for all!

Here’s how it looked to begin with:

Dressing table (Before)

Dressing table messy

My inner neat freak is blushing right now!

And that poor cactus plant is parched!

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That ‘cosmetic damage’ I mentioned earlier.

And here’s how my dressing table looks after a good ol’ decluttering session…

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I added my bargain stickers and covered up the offending mark in the wood. ;)

I picked up this handy little make up organiser for about a fiver in Home Bargains.

I even organised the inside of my drawers (steady now!)….

I used these plastic containers, meant for craft storage, to keep my jewelry neat and tidy. These were also cheap as chips from Home Bargains.

Lovely and organised, just how I like it!

A little bit of newborn Jasmine squidgyness to make me smile.

And the end result…

Much better! :)

I have now been bitten by the the decluttering bug! I’m desperate to clear out more of the messy areas of our house because it feels oh-so-satisfying when it’s done!

Are there any areas of your home that could do with a bit of de-cluttering? 

If your own dressing table needs some love, why not check out my Pinterest board for some inspiration:

Follow Tinyfootsteps Blog {www.tinyfootsteps.co.uk}’s board Dressing table inspiraton on Pinterest.
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Freshening up our home: A Wishlist

It’s no surprise that with a toddler and Mini Schnauzer (who has a penchant for eating things she shouldn’t) there are quite a few items in our home that need replacing. Either because they’re broken or purely because they are tired and worn out (and not in a “oooh that looks vintage” kinda way!)

I’ve been thinking about which items I would like to replace in our house and what with. (Somebody please hide my credit card!)

So, here is my homeware wishlist:

orange rose in blue vase with out of focus magazine and candles behind

Dining table chairs: 

Our current dining table chairs are about 8 years old and they are my least favourite items in our kitchen. Their wooden legs are dented and scratched and the leather backs are covered in miscellaneous (non-removable – trust me, I’ve tried) stains. Not only that, they are far too big and bulky for the size of our current kitchen (we first had had the dining table and chairs in our old flat which had a large open-plan dining space).

What would I replace them with?

 

Naples250

Naples Dining Chair, Grey – £109.97 (Amazon)

I love these Naples Dining Chairs because of their colour and shape. The curved sides make them look chic and elegant and they look far less cumbersome than our current dining chairs. I’m also a sucker for anything grey when it comes to furniture.

Bookcase: 

We have a bookcase in our conservatory which we keep all of our cookbooks on. This bookcase used to be in Stephen’s old bedroom… when he was a child! Needless to say, after being used for near enough 3 decades, it’s falling apart. And who could blame it for buckling under the pressure of all those big, heavy recipe books? It’s time it was replaced.

What I would replace it with?

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House by John Lewis Oxford 1×3 Unit £225.00

We’re really not looking for anything too fancy, purely something that is sturdy and does the job. This 3-shelf unit would be a perfect fit in our conservatory and has plenty of storage for our collection of cookbooks.

Dinnerware Set:

Every meal time it’s always an absolute mission to find plates that match. Over the years we’ve broken many of our plates and bowls and we’ved ended up with a lot of mismatched dinnerware. Normally, it’s not something that bothers us all that much (we’re usually more interested in what’s ON the plate). Having said that, I do find myself lusting over gorgeous sets of matching dinnerware. Also, on those rare occasions when we host dinner parties at ours, it would be nice to give everybody their food on matching plates!

What would I replace ours with?

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Latte Dinnerware Set from Anthropologie – £44.00

This simple yet gorgeous set of dinnerware from Anthropologie would be perfect. It comes with x4 dinner plates, dessert plates and bowls.

Are there any items of homeware you would like to replace in your own home and why?

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