I have been meaning to sit down and share photos from Luna May’s newborn shoot for so long, but life as a mom of two is non stop, life feels so busy!
And to think I thought I was busy before now!!! 🙂 I was feeling very overwhelmed in the early weeks, to be honest I thought I wasn’t going to be able to cope, but day by day, week by week, we found our way and slowly started getting our own little routine going. Almost 5 months in now and we are flying. Luna May has slotted into our little family like she was always meant to be. And she is the most magical, endearing, happy, content, pleasant and beautiful baby girl you can imagine. Her sweet, happy personality is already starting to show.
To say her big sis is in love is an understatement, she ADORES Luna May, and is so gentle and kind with her, I’ll be honest, she has surprised me! I expected Anabelle to be more “challenging’ lets call it, but never once has she acted out or shown any anger or jealousy towards Luna, to me yes, she gets frustrated with me at times (and struggled especially in early weeks with how I now had to divide my time)
All in all, its been a busy few months (we also moved into our new house just 5 weeks before Luna May arrived (and she was 4 weeks early), it’s been chaotic, but life is starting to come back to normal, or should I say our ‘new’ normal now, and we are as happy as can be.
New Born Photography
When our beautiful baby Luna May was 17 days old, Edel O’Malley came to our home to do a newborn photoshoot with her and to get some family shots of us as a new family of 4! I am forever grateful to Edel for these photos; memories to last a lifetime. I can’t believe how much little Luna May has changed even already!
I’ve known Edel now for years now; I first met her when I was pregnant with Anabelle Ivy; she did a pregnancy shoot with me then for a fashion brand I was working with at the time, since then she did a newborn shoot with Anabelle and a few more of Anabelle over the years (you can see more here , here and here). She is absolutely brilliant at what she does and has such an incredible, calming and natural way with babies and young kids. (and nervous adults too!!)
The thoughts of doing a photoshoot so soon after giving birth might give you the shivers but TRUST ME you will not regret it. They are treasured memories that last a lifetime, and as you mammies know, that newborn bubble doesn’t last long so it’s so special to have photos to look back on of when they were so so little. Plus I promise you, the moment you meet Edel, you will feel at ease.
She is great at what she dose; not only is she trained to the highest standard of newborn safety (which really calmed me down), but she really knows how to capture a moment and has great empathy with how new mammies and indeed new daddies are feeling.
How and When to Book
The best way to arrange a newborn shoot is to get in touch with Edel while you are pregnant so she can put you in her diary for when you are due, off course, details like this are subject to change (for example, both my girls arrived at only 36 weeks) but you need to get your name and due date into her diary, this lady books up fast and it’s no surprise.
How early you have your new born shoot done?
Edel advises babies to be photographed anytime between 5 and 14 days but anytime up to 21 days is perfect too. Anabelle was only 8 days old when we had her photoshoot done, Luna’s was a little later because she unfortunately spent some time in ICU so we didn’t get her home until she was nearly 10 days old.
** PLEASE NOTE: Edel is going on maternity leave in November 2018, please get in touch with her to find out when she is taking bookings for 2019
You can check out Edel’s website here . She also does lifestyle photography, family shoots and weddings.
Trust me when I say, if you do end up booking Edel, you won’t regret it!
First blog post since becoming a mammy to two… and wow how life has changed! It’s hectic and absolutely exhausting but also SO incredible and I wonder what life even was like before our gorgeous Luna May arrived.
Luna May had a really tough start in this world and sadly spent some time in NICU which was heart breaking, truly heart breaking; something which will take us a while to deal with emotionally as it was such a stressful and worrying time. Thankfully she is home now and doing well. And this little lady got to come home to one of the most beautiful nurseries I have ever seen.
I am SO EXCITED to finally be able to reveal Luna May’s beautiful nursery, this is a project I have been working on over the past few months with Baby Ventura.
As lots of you may know if you follow me on social media; I teamed up with Baby Ventura for the design of Luna May’s nursery.
Baby Ventura is a brand new division of the renowned Ventura Interior Design . I have been a long time fan of the work of Ventura Interior Design and the owner Arlene McIntyre, so when the opportunity presented itself to work with them on a collaboration for The Style Fairy I jumped at it.
You can watch the full video transformation here, from start to finish how the whole process worked, and the complete revamp of her room from start to finish..
It was early January when we first spoke, I was about 4 months pregnant and was due in June, my husband Cormac and I were in the middle of working on our new home (a complete renovation of an old house) and the pressure was on to complete the house before the baby would arrive. Step in Baby Ventura, what perfect timing. We discussed plans on how it could all work as a collaborative project and decided together to film the process of the complete transformation of what would become the nursery.
The whole process was such an emotional journey, as each day we filmed my bump was getting bigger, I feel quite emotional writing this now as Luna May lies sleeping beside me in her cot, what a journey it has been. I am excited that some day she can look back on this video.
How the process worked
Doing our home while pregnant was one of the most stressful things we have ever done, particularly because we were working to a deadline, and all along I knew there was a big chance Luna May would have to be delivered early due to health concerns (she ended up arriving at 36 weeks).
But from start to finish having Arlene and the team of Baby Ventura design and transform our nursery was seamless; so so easy and totally stress free. It was a dream to have all the worry of doing that room taken out of my hands, I didn’t have to think about it. And I knew the end product would be the nursery of my dreams. And it is, and more.
When you meet with Baby Ventura to discuss your plans, they take a look at the room they have to work with, they discuss your vision; what you like, what you don’t like, what colours you want, do you want it gender neutral etc, your lifestyle, your demands and your needs for the room. They then take all this information away and come back to you with plans and ideas.
For Luna May’s nursery the truth was I wasn’t 100% sure what I wanted, my mind was full and busy with doing the rest of the house so my brief to Baby Ventura was to surprise me, we had really good chat and Arlene got a feel for me, my vision, my personality and my style and then she worked her magic.
We met again then to review her ideas, the moment I saw what she and the team had planned I LOVED IT. I was blown away, working with an interior design team like this gives you the confidence to do things you might not necessarily do on your own.
I speak about this in the video, for example, I adore the wallpaper in Luna’s nursery, I mean totally ADORE IT, but I know for sure I would never have been brave enough to pick it myself, nor would I have had the confidence to do the entire room with it (even the window seat), that takes vision, the kind of vision I don’t have. I put my trust in their professional advice and I love the outcome.
The Finer Details
They present you ideas and talk you through how the room will come together, it was so exciting seeing the plans. The Baby Ventura team knew I was expecting a girl and took this into account, I wanted it ‘pretty’ but at the same time not over top girly. Arlene describes the end result of Luna May’s nursery as ‘whimsical’ and that sums it up perfectly in my opinion.
At this second meeting when I saw the plans all decisions were made, from the carpet and it’s colour, the blinds, the window seat, the radiator cover, to the specific colour of the cot and changing unit. You can choose any colour you want, I took the advise of the interior design team on this.
We also discussed the rocking chair, what colours would work on it etc. Baby Ventura have a range of furniture to choose from but I felt the rocking chair best suited us and our needs, it’s the perfect feeding chair, so comfortable, I love lying back on it to feed Luna. View the rocking chair here (It can be made in any colour of your choice)
All the featured products in the nursery can be viewed on the Baby Ventura website here.
The room we chose for the nursery is a small room; but with some very clever space planning and the use of a really large mirror, the design team made the absolute best use of the space. No detail was left to chance and for me it is the finishing touches, the styling and the accessories that make this nursery as beautiful as it is; from the beautiful pom pom trim detail on the roman blinds, to the animal heads on the wall, to the luxurious patterned cushions and the stunning window seat, I am so thrilled with the outcome.
Once the decisions were made on the nursery, the actual transformation part was incredibly fast, the team from Ventura came to our house and completed all the work within a few hours, assembling all the furniture and finalising all the styling details.
Keeping The Secret
It’s been so hard to keep this special room as a secret from you all this time, I am so delighted to finally share it and to now get to enjoy it with my precious little girl Luna May, it’s been such an emotional journey,
For more information
To make an enquiry or to book a consultation with Baby Ventura or for more information on any of the products featured you can check out the Baby Ventura website HERE, email them HERE or visit their Instagram or Facebook.
This is a collaboration with Baby Ventura; the interior design service and transformation of this nursery was done by Ventura Interior Design in collaboration with The Style Fairy.
Please note: Luna May currently still sleeps over night in our room and will until at least 6 months but we use the nursery for the rocking chair (she loves it) and also the upstairs changing table, and I also have all her clothes, nappies etc in here.
I am not even going to dare complain about this heat wave…. we have had far too much cold, snow and rain to even attempt to give out about this sunshine. But at the same time, heat and sun, whether at home here in Ireland or if you are travelling abroad on holidays brings extra concerns and worry as parents about protecting our babies delicate skin. We want to keep our babies cool and as comfortable as possible in the heat. When Water Wipes approached me about collaborating on this campaign I jumped at it, as it think it is such an important and helpful message for all us parents.
In a recent survey conducted among Irish parents, almost 80% say their newborns have experienced skin irritations in the warmer weather, with heat rash (48%), nappy rash (29%) and ‘general’ irritation (22%) the main complaints and I can totally agree with this. I have been so concerned with not only Luna May (my 5 week old baby) but also Anabelle (2.5 years), I’ve noticed prickly heat rash on both of them, and off course your instinct is to worry. This intense heat is new for us all, and we need to know how to mind ourselves, but especially our little ones.
With this in mind, Water Wipes have created some top tips and advice in collaboration with Fidelma O’Dowd, Dermatology Advanced Nurse at Beaumont Hospital, on keeping your little ones, and yourself, healthy and happy in the hot weather:
Keeping cool – it is easy to check if you baby is too warm by feeling the back of their neck. If it’s at all hot or damp it is time to remove a layer or move to somewhere cooler.
Hydration – as a rule of thumb, 50% additional liquids are recommended in hotter weather for babies. They may not be visibly sweating or look hot, in order to lose fluids. As babies under six months can’t drink water, replace lost liquids with extra formula or more regular nursing.
Avoiding heat rash – bumpy and red or pink in colour, heat rash tends to appear where airflow is poor. Think skin creases or the bands of clothing, but it can also appear on babies faces. The best way of treating it is by removing the tight clothing or nappy and dabbing with lukewarm water on a sponge. Keep skin clean and dry and use a barrier cream if required – moist skin can cause irritation and further inflammation so keeping the skin dry really is key. Ideally clothing should be loose and cotton, when it is required. The rash should go down within 12 hours but if not, have a chat with your pharmacist or GP.
Comfy bedtime – a cool (18 – 20 degrees) bedroom with circulating air is ideal. In terms of clothing and bedding, babies often require one additional layer than an adult may sleep in, so if you’re sleeping naked with no sheets, a t-shirt and nappy should do the trick for baby.
Treating sunburn – should the worst happen and your baby gets sunburn, we recommend speaking with your GP if they’re under 12 months or with your pharmacist for those a little older. They will likely advise applying lukewarm water followed by a moisturiser or recommended topical treatment to the affected area. Also, leave the blisters be!
Sooth the skin – you may well venture to the beach or local swimming pool when the temperature rises, and chlorine and salt water can play havoc with skin. It is advisable to rinse it off as soon as possible in lukewarm water.
In a nutshell, I think it boils down to staying hydrated (I find making homemade ice lollies work a treat for Anabelle, my toddler), and seeking shade at peak hours.
Ahhhh can you believe Christmas is now only around the corner!! How did that happen? I don’t know about you but I am already starting to panic about gifts, I always do this….. I panic and yet still leave everything to the last minute! This year I am vowing not to leave everything last minute!
To make life easier and lend a helping hand when it comes to Christmas Gifts I have teamed up with F&F at Tesco to bring you some fabulous, budget friendly gift ideas. Christmas is such an expensive time of year, we are all on a budget, but we all still want to treat our nearest and dearest.
I have Gift Ideas for Her, Gift Ideas for Him and lastly, Gift Ideas under €10 (which includes some ideas for the kids). I had a lot of fun working on this collaboration; I started by asking you, (on Snapchat and Insta Stories) who you found the most difficult to buy for and your response was overwhelming, so from there, I selected lots of gifts from my local F&F at Tesco.
Because sometimes pictures don’t do enough justice, we filmed some really fun videos to showcase all my Christmas Gift Guide Ideas; I hope you enjoy them. Something really different for me, but just a new, fun, interactive way to bring you content 🙂 Check them out below…
GIFT IDEAS FOR HER
Ankle Boots, €32
GIFT IDEAS FOR HIM
Hip Flask, €15
GIFT IDEAS UNDER €10
Baby Santa Costume, €10
Ear muffs, €6
Bobble hat, €10
Birth stone necklace, €6.50
As well as the Gifts, all the looks I am wearing here and in the videos are head to toe from F&F at Tesco; they have some stunning, and super cosy knitwear in right now. Perfect Christmas Day outfit ideas.
Ok ladies, competition time once again! This time I am giving away a statement necklace from my brand new TSF Collection. YOU get to choose ANY piece you want from the collection.
My latest TSF collection comprises 10 styles of necklace, from statement to more simple; all perfect for the Christmas Party Season. Check out the full collection HERE
A TSF necklace is the perfect addition to your winter wardrobe; it can instantly transform or update any outfit. From a simple and classic ‘Little Black Dress’ to adding some glam and sparkle to a simple knit jumper or blouse. Here’s a little peak at the ten piece collection:
WANT TO SEND A GIFT?
All the TSF necklaces come in luxury white gift boxes making them perfect Christmas gift ideas (the box is also ideal for storing your necklace). If you want to send a gift directly to someone, simple put their postal address in the order form and leave a personal note for the recipient
HOW TO WIN
To be in with a chance to win ANY necklace from the TSF Collection simply;
Leave a comment below telling us which necklace you would love to win?
A few weeks back we had the pleasure of working with the brilliant Edel O’Malley photographer on a family photo session… with a difference. I didn’t want “posed” photos and I knew Anabelle Ivy, being the age she is, wouldn’t sit still for a second so when Edel got in touch with me about an outdoors lifestyle/location session, I thought it was just perfect for us.
I’ve known Edel quite a while now, she came to our home and did a newborn photoshoot with Anabelle- see it here (AB was just 8 days old). Then again when Anabelle was about 8 months old I had some more shots done with Edel. Anabelle has grown up and changed so much over the past year that I was dying to capture some memories of how she is now; walking, talking, laughing, playing and running around like a little lunatic! I knew a studio setting wouldn’t be right for her. Instead, Edel met us in our local park here in Dun Laoghaire and we took it from there.
Edel has a very relaxed, gentle and calm way about her, Anabelle instantly felt comfortable with her (as did Cormac and I) She has such a good way with kids, there was no directing or trying to get Anabelle to stand a certain way or even stand still for that matter, Edel just followed Anabelle’s lead and caught some incredible images of her and us as a family, just laughing and playing in the park.
These are the kind of memories that will last a lifetime, as Anabelle grows up I know we will look back on these and smile, and always be grateful to Edel for capturing her character and her joyful spirit in such a beautiful and captivating way.
My little girl is turning 2 at the end of September and I can hardly believe it. I know everyone tells you to treasure every minute because it goes by in a blink, but now I can truly understand that. They say “the days are long but the years are short” and it just really rings true.
We didn’t have the easiest of starts in the whole world with Miss Anabelle Ivy, she suffered terribly with severe reflux for almost a year, and there were days when I thought her crying and pain would never end but thank god that is a distant memory for us now, and we have the happiest, giddiest, most loving little girl on our hands now.
With each passing day I see more and more of her incredible personality coming through and she honestly just blows me away, she is fiercely independent, determined, loving, sweet, stubborn, funny, giddy, hyper, mischievous, affectionate and has a smile and a giggle that would set the coldest heart on fire.
A single kiss from this little girl and the whole world seems ok again.
If I think of just how fast the last two years have gone by, I know the next two will be even quicker, that’s why I am just so so glad we got the photos done when we did, they sum her up so well.
Thinking of having some pictures done of your family?
I would really encourage any mammies reading this to consider getting a lifestyle shoot done with Edel, you will not be disappointed, trust me!! From now until Christmas Edel is offering 10% OFF on her lifestyle location shoots if you mention “The Style Fairy” when booking.
Location sessions like the one we did can be done at home or at a location of your own choice. The package includes over an hour and a half session time, so loads of time for plenty of great shots, or to even allow for a change of location if you wish & Edel will travel to you. To get more information on her packages you can email Edel on firstname.lastname@example.org OR you can visit her website HERE to see more of her work
And when you get in touch with Edel make sure to tell her we sent you 😉 So you can avail of her discount over over the next few months.
By far the most requested blog post lately is tips for flying and holidaying abroad with a toddler. I wrote a blog post after our very first holiday abroad with Anabelle (you can read that HERE). She wasn’t walking back then and in ways I think that was probably easier! I was absolutely terrified before our first holiday with her and she really surprised us!
I wasn’t quite as nervous this time around and overall she was great (still lots of hairy moments and a few toddler melt downs!!!!)
The most common message/ email/ snap I get is “I’m flying with my xxx month old and I am terrified, please share your tips”. I think we all are nervous to fly with our wee ones (maybe not so much you well seasoned mammies but us newbies are) My main worries are/were things like; the flight – What if her ears pop? (I have heard nightmare stories of burst ear drums and the likes 🙁 ) What if she screams the whole time on the flight? What if the person next us is horrible and not patient? Then on holidays you worry about things like; Will she eat the food? Will she sleep? Should we keep her routine? How much supplies should I bring? We all have the same worries and concerns and I know I have spoken with countless mammies on Snapchat about this.
I’ve written this blog post just to share our experience and tricks I learnt along the way 🙂 I am by no means a pro, and my god there was plenty of stress at times too, but just a few things that worked for us.
So we were in Portugal for this holiday. We were staying in a family owned place so hence I didn’t share too much of it on Snapchat or social media. But the area we were in was very near Praia de Luz and about ten minutes drive to Lagos. We have been to this area a couple of times before (never with a baby) and it’s really a stunning part of Portugal.
Luz is a sleepy, rustic, traditional Portuguese village, totally different to the likes of Villamoura for example. More old style Portugal. The beach in Luz is STUNNING – really gorgeous.
We flew (with Aer Lingus) to Faro Airport and where we were staying was about a 50 minute drive. We had a car booked (with a car seat) so it was great to have no stress when we arrived in Faro airport. It is so handy to pre book a car and request a car seat, almost all car rental companies will facilitate this. For the remainder of our trip we rented a car, again we had use of the car seat all week. It was really handy. We used a rental company called Lago Rent.
Most days we ate breakfast in our own apartment. Then headed to the beach in Luz, then it was lunch, and time for Annabelle’s nap and then in the afternoons we usually went to the playground or the pool. And headed our for dinner at around 6pm/ 6.30pm each evening. Mostly we were home by 8.30pm/9pm (but more on restaurants later)
The Flight – My Top Tips
When booking your flights I do advise to try and pick flights times that coincide with nap times (where and if possible). We flew around 11.30am/12pm so it meant getting Anabelle up a little earlier that morning and by the time of the flight she was well ready for a nap.
We booked seats in advance but they messed them up, anyway long story short the staff were great and got us seated together (I had a mini panic attack that Cormac and I were gonna be separated!!).
My top tips for surviving the flight are:
Try fly as close to nap time as possible
Offer a bottle or two. Anabelle doesn’t take a bottle during the day anymore but she took one on the flight and it really helped calm her and get her off to sleep. So if your baby still takes a bottle in the day time I advise bringing at least two.
I brought the powder formula in little containers (already counted out) and just bought bottled water for the bottles once we were though security
Bring as many snacks as you possible can. Snacks and food are the best possible distraction. I packed raisins, rice cakes, bread roll, cream crackers and anything from Organix is really handy like the sweet corn rings, carrot puffs, the flat jack style bars, fruit bars, oh and mini custards – they are SO handy and Anabelle loves them.
Security can vary – some let you bring small yogurts and custards and formula, while other don’t. We were allowed the custards. And then I bought bottled water after security.
I packed lots of snacks and I was so glad I did. There was not great snack variety available in the local supermarkets.
Bring a change of clothes on the flight (and a spare vest!!!) You know yourself, poop explosions are always a possibility
Changing bag – I brought a few nappies, wipes, hand santizer and a mini bum cream (Bepanthen)
Extra/ spare doddies
iPad – an absolute MUST. She loves Frozen so we have that downloaded plus Tangled, The Lion King and some of her favourites
New (and small) toys. You don’t need to go to expense, but a couple of small toys that they haven’t seen before are a great distraction. I bought a small book, stickers (she LOVES stickers), some mini play dough and other small bits and pieces. Whatever your child is into.
Sleepytot comforter. Ye must be sick of me talking about the Sleepytot! But Anabelle has a special ‘Bunny’ and she only gets him at nap time and bed time – When she sees him she gets so excited and for her it means it’s sleep time. I brought this on flight with us and took him out just as we were about to take off. I wanted to make sure she was sucking on the way up (to avoid her ears popping). it worked a treat.
I also brought Camomile syrup on board, I am always so worried about her ears, so the camomile is great to dip the soother into to make sure she sucks – it tastes great, she loves it, it is supposed to have a calming effect and most importantly it means she kept sucking her dody!
Other than that, just try yourself to be as calm as you can, they can sense it of us if we are stressed for sure.
Dress yourself comfortably and same for your wee one, something that is easy to get on and off (those toilets are tiny so it’s hard to manoeuvre)
On the flight out Anabelle was great, she slept about one hour. The flight to Faro is 2 hours 20 so it was brill. (Love the shorter flight!). On the way home we were an hour delayed and she was soon over tired by the time we boarded, she was a total grump, the poor pet and very irritable, lucky for us there was no one in the third seat next to us so it was great to have the extra space. She didn’t sleep on the way home (even though she was exhausted) and she did cry a bit on and off but we survived to tell the tale 🙂
Most people are very kind and understanding when you are travelling with babies and toddlers and if you are unlucky enough to get sitting beside someone who isn’t very nice? Well, feck them, you will never see them again, kids are kids, and if they don’t understand that, well more fool them!
We live by routine in this house. And I think it is so so important, it gives Anabelle comfort knowing her routine and by bedtime (most of the time) she runs to the stairs to go to bed once she has her teeth brushed as she just knows her routine so well by now. (It’s not always that perfect but it’s getting there)
But, with that being said, holidays are different, and I think you have to be more flexible. Within reason though I think it is only fair to keep as close as you can to your home routine. So Anabelle still takes one nap, usually two hours from 1pm – 3pm, because we wanted to keep her up later at night on holidays we tried to stretch the naps as late as we could and it worked quite well (most days) So mostly she was going for a nap around 2pm and waking up around 4pm.
Before I continue I probably should mention – we had the most amazing 4/5 days on holidays at the start but then we all got very, very sick and ended up delaying our flights as we are unable to fly home so the latter half of our holiday was not so pleasant. PLUS our dog Oscar was missing on the early part of our holiday, so all in all, although there were brilliant moments to this holiday there were some pretty awful ones too! But we are all home, well and happy now (including Oscar) so it’s all good.
I got asked a lot while we were away and since I got home on how did we entertain Anabelle during meals out.
And the truth is…. it was VERY difficult. Unlike our last holiday when we were staying in a resort and there was buffet to head to in the evenings and she could run riot, this was more going out for meals in local restaurants and it was hard for her. She has a span of approx 45 mins and if we are lucky, one hour.
We brought the iPad and we also have a portable DVD player so we brought one or other of those out with us at night. I would normally give her a small dinner in the apartment at around 5.30pm and then she would usually snack/eat again while we were in the restaurant, I always just asked for a tiny portion of either rice, pasta with butter or chips – This really helps to keep her occupied.
But it depends on her mood, some days she was happy to sit and watch Peppa on the DVD and we could eat in peace, other evenings she had no patience and we had to speed eat our way out of the place, But hey, that’s toddlers for you!
As I said we had brekkie in the apartment each day. Lunch we usually had out, just at a casual beach side place, I then made Anabelle proper dinners in the apartment and then we all went out for dinner at night. In Praia De Luz, I would recommend;
Fortaleze Da Luz – this place is AMAZING. a complete must visit. It is an old Castle with the most stunning views. Ask to eat outside!!! It’s so worth it.
2. Paraiso. This beach side restaurant is our other favouite. The views are AMAZING too and the food is divine. It has major Miami beach vibes going on – Fab interiors! V child friendly too.
3. Fabrica. Fab menu, lovely staff, close to the beach.
4. Italia. This is in Lagos town but is such a yummy Italian, well worth a visit.
There are lots more great restaurants but these would be my top 4.
Stroller/ Baby Equipment
I have the Babyzen YOYO stroller and love it, it is so neat, folds so easily ad can be brought on board if you wish. We choose to bring it as far as the air craft and then let them take it.
There was a cot in our family’s place where we were staying and in any hotel or resort you are heading they will provide a cot, just make sure to request in advance. Same with highchair, any hotels or resorts will have these.
We did pack our monitors, just for peace of mind as Anabelle was staying in a room on her own.
Bring enough nappies, wipes, swimming nappies etc to get you through say 3 days or so and then you can head to the local supermarket. I like to have enough to get us through the initial days (just in case) but everywhere now has shops that will sell the Pampers equivalent (Think in Portugal they were called Dodot). Same goes with swimmimg nappies.
The only thing now, having been on two foreign holidays with Anabelle, they don’t tend to have the baby snacks I like to give her (Like the organic ones etc) So I do advice bringing some snacks.
I also packed a one tog gro bag – I got it from Mothercare online and it’s perfect for warmer weather. As well as that I brought a little hooded towel for her.
I also brought Ewan the Sheep, and some of the teddies from her bed – To remind her of home! I know i know, I am probably mad, but I do think it helps her! I also brought her bedtime book (Goodnight, Moon) which we read every single night before sleep. So I tried to keep things as normal as I could.
Clothes & Swimwear
Most of Anabelle’s holiday clothes I got in Dunnes Stores, Penneys and Next, with a few pieces from Jojo Maman Bébé.
Jojo Maman is fab for swimwear, swimming hats and swim shoes and I just ADORE the dresses they do for little girls – Really cute.
I picked up two swimsuits ( coverall all swim suits) from Dunnes for Annabelle, she wore those to the beach and pool at all times. There is great comfort in having her more or less totally covered up. They are very handy and I highly recommend.
She has swim shoes/ beach shoes (which can be worn pool side or in the water) from Jojo Maman and a tie on swim hat from Jojo also. Everywhere has great swimwear in at the mo – Penneys, Heatons, Dunnes, H&M, Zara, Next etc etc
I picked up fabulous denim shorts and cover ups for her in Penenys. In the evenings she mostly wore dresses with a little cardigans. They need very little so try not to over pack (easer said than done as kids stuff so soooooooo cute and hard to resist not bringing it all!)
I think that’s about it, if I have missed anything or if you have any questions, please just leave a comment below and I’ll get straight back to you.
I recently launched my brand new summer TSF collection and I am SO excited about it. So much so, I want to celebrate by running a GIVEAWAY – see bottom of the post for details on how to enter 🙂
This is my fourth collection of TSF fashion accessories and my far by biggest and most eclectic yet. This season’s range see’s the introduction of some stunning semi precious stones (all handmade in New York) as well as the new addition of rings. I absolutely love each and every piece in the collection and that is so important to me. Each piece is so unique and so wearable, and there is certainly something in there for every taste and style.
The collection comprises 17 pieces in totals from rings and necklaces to bracelets and earrings.
The hugely popular ‘Friendship Knot’ range is back in the bangle and this time in a beautiful, dainty ring and it comes in silver, rose gold and yellow gold. All items are one size fits all, including the rings, as you will see from the pics there is an opening on the back.
FRIENDSHIP KNOT RANGE
To celebrate the launch of my summer TSF collection, I am giving away TWO BRACELETS – One of the ‘Georgia’ statement leaf cuff and one of ‘Bella’ Live, Love, Laugh bracelet to two lucky winners 🙂
I have some REALLY exciting news to share with you all…. I’m delighted to announce that I am one of the judges at next weeks Punchestown Festival judging the Bollinger Best Dressed Lady.
I am judging on Wednesday 26th April (Which is Gold Cup Day) and my fellow judges on that day are Aisling O’Loughlin, former Xposé Presenter and owner of exquisite.ie, Hannah Power wife of Gold Cup winning jockey Robert ‘Puppy’ Power and Linda Stinson, owner of Bellamianta Tan. I really cannot wait! And what a fabulous bunch of ladies to be judging along side.
The Punchestown Festival takes place from Tuesday 25th to Saturday 29th April 2017. Other judges during the week include Glenda Gilson (Tuesday), Bláthnaid Treacy (Thursday) and Vogue Williams (Friday).
The prize for the Bollinger Best Dressed Lady is simply AMAZING, the overall winner (which is announced on Friday) gets;
VIP trip for two to the private Bollinger estate and its new Champagne libraries, France.
Overnight stay in the beautiful historic town of Reims – the capital of the Champagne region
Michelin dining and luxury overnight stay in Paris, the City of Light
Private chauffeur and Champagne lunch experience
Each day (Tuesday – Thursday) there will be 5 finalists picked with one overall winner from each day.
Each of these 5 finalists will receive a €100 Topflight voucher, a bottle of Bollinger Champagne and other exclusive goodies, while the overall winner each day will also receive a custom-made Montgomery Millinery hat worth €250 and a €200 Topflight voucher. The winners from Tuesday to Thursday are invited back as automatic finalists in Friday’s main competition where they can wear the same thing or something else, it’s their choice. The overall winner of the Bollinger Best Dressed Lady will be announced on Friday.
My Top Tips
Hope I get to meet some of you ladies on the day, if you are coming on Wednesday, make sure to come over and say hi, I would absolutely LOVE to meet you.
Here are some of my top tips for a winning look:
Timeless Elegance. For me a winning look should be timeless and classic, it is nice to see the incorporation of some ‘trends’ but for me a classic and elegant look with a demure, sophisticated and timeless feel is always a winner.
Style & Flair. The winner to me should show their personal style and individual flair, catch the eye of the judge or scout but yet not be totally over the top either. A winner or a finalist can usually be spotted a mile away but not because she is loud or showy, rather because she exudes style.
Be you. Stay true to you and your own personal style, don’t try to recreate a formulaic race day look because you feel you have to, instead, embrace your own style and wear what suits you.
Be comfortable and confident. You need to feel comfortable in your look which in turn will give you the confidence to rock it. Keep in mind that you want to be ‘race’ appropriate too.
Expensive or deisgner does not equal a winner . For me personally, it does not matter whether you are wearing Prada or Penneys, instead it is HOW you put together your look, not whether it was expensive or if its designer. I like to see how people pull together their outfit from head to toe, that might mean, a little vintage here, a little high street there and a splash of designer, and a borrowed hat but – It’s the finished product I am looking for. The detail, the thought, the way it fits and suits your shape.
I am so excited to show you all my outfit, although I am not even close to organised yet – It’s all the final bits that can take so long, but I am getting there! I am extremely honoured to say I am being dressed by the amazing Irish designer Niamh O’Neill and I actually cannot wait to show you the outfit by her. I have never worn anything like this before! I’m also beyond excited that the amazingly talented Irish Milliner Jennifer Wrynne is designing me a bespoke headpiece…. Eeeeecccck, I’m bursting with excitement to see that. To keep up to date on my outfit and more importantly to follow all the style on the day itself make sure you follow me on Snapchat (username: thestylefairy)
** THIS COMPETITION IS NOW CLOSED. THE WINNERS ARE AOIFE O’SULLIVAN AND EVE BYRNE – BOTH WINNERS HAVE NOW BEEN CONTACTED **
I’m delighted to be once again collaborating with my good friends at Vaughan Shoes to showcase their amazing Spring/ Summer 2017 collection.
And I am thrilled to announce there is a very special 15% DISCOUNT CODE for Style Fairy readers across their entire collections using the code ‘TSF15’ at the checkout, this discount starts today (Tuesday 18th April 2017 and ends on Tuesday 25th April 2017).
Plus, if you scroll to the bottom of this post there is A GIVEAWAY 🙂
I am a huge fan of Vaughan Shoes; they stock an amazing array of fantastic brands including the likes of Amy Huberman, Clarks, Dubarry, Pedro Anton, Kate Appleby and Jose Saenz to name just a few.
I originally came across Vaughan Shoes when I was hunting down a pair of wedges a few summers ago and my love affair with THE comfiest wedges around began… Pedro Anton (see that range here). Plus, this seasons Amy Huberman collection is my favourite of hers yet, wait til you see it, trust me, you will want them all!! See here.
Vaughan Shoes is a 100% Irish owned company offers free delivery nationwide, a very easy returns service plus a very quick and easy click & collect service across their 3 stores in Castlebar, Ballinrobe and Claremorris. And wow I have to say I am seriously impressed by their Spring/ Summer collection. To showcase their latest and greatest I have decided to do “The Style Fairy’s Top 10 Buys” across their website.
COMPETITION TO WIN AMY HUBERMAN SHOES (OR ANY SHOES YOU LIKE FROM VAUGHAN SHOES)
Be sure to scroll to the bottom of this blog post to see how TWO of you lucky readers can WIN a pair of shoes from the stunning Amy Huberman collection or if you prefer, the two winners can simply pick from ANY shoes they wish across the website.
THE STYLE FAIRY’S TOP 10 BUYS
In no particular order here are some of my best buys. It was close to impossible to narrow this list down to 10, I could have easily included 20! Always a great sign of a good collection. What you get when you buy from Vaughans is REALLY good quality, and shoes or boots that will last for seasons to come. I have trainers from a brand they stock called ARA, that are now seasons old, yet still one of the comfiest trainers I own!!
TWO lucky readers get to choose ANY pair of shoes they wish across the entire collection – Amy Huberman, Pedro Anton, Jose Saenz, anything YOU like. I recently got the grey Amy Huberman boors myself and just love them!
TAG AT LEAST 2 FRIENDS ON FACEBOOK WHO WOULD LOVE TO WIN
LEAVE A COMMENT BELOW SAYING YOU HAVE ENTERED (it is vital you enter here on the blog too as we need your email address to contact you)
The lucky winners will be announced on Wednesday 26th April. I will draw two winners names at random and will announce this on Facebook – You will also get an email from me. Then you will get to choose any shoes you want and they will be immediately posted out to you 🙂
Don’t forget from today (18th April) until next Tuesday (25th April ’17) there is 15% across everything on Vaughan Shoes. Simply use the code ‘TSF15’ at the checkout. This applies to all brands, plus all mens shoes, so you might just pick up something for the hubby too (They stock great mens brands too like Tommy Bowe, Dubarry and lots more!)
*Please note the discount does not apply to Jose Saenz as they are currently running 20% off across this entire range.
Very best of luck to everyone
¨¨This is a sponsored blog post in collaboration with Vaughan Shoes**