What I Wore to a Wedding

Tall and I went to the beautiful wedding of two lovely friends on Saturday. The sun was shining, the birds were singing, and we were childless for ten whole hours.

 Despite not having the boys with us, I ended wearing a dress I could easily nurse Pickle in if I was called to come home; it was a 40 minute drive to get home, and I didn’t want to waste any time if I had to see to a distraught little man refusing to go to bed without his mama.

Pickle wasn’t happy about it, but ended up falling asleep in his grandad’s arms, and was fast asleep by the time we arrived home.

I did try on two other dresses – I didn’t want to wear black – but I was too self-conscious about my chest, so went for the dress I felt most comfortable in.

Tall and ShortJewelleryWedding ClutchBow HeelsOutfit details
Dress: House of Harlow
Cardigan: Glassons
Shoes: Dorothy Perkins
Necklace: a gift when I was a bridesmaid seven or eight years ago
Earrings: Etsy, my wedding pearls
Bracelets: Esteem Jewellery (my fake-but-so-sparkly bling) and Oroton, a gift from my sister for my 30th birthday
Rings: wedding band and engagement ring, and a gift from my nana for my 21st birthday – bought 10 years after the fact!
Clutch: Aldo

Tall’s suit is from River Island

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For the first time in aaaaaages, linking up with Kelly for

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{Review} Breastmates Nurture Top

Regardless of where your thoughts lie on the “breastfeeding in public” spectrum, it is a subject which always causes a stir. I’m not about to start a debate here (y’all are welcome to your opinions, but this is not a discussion about that, ‘kay?), but I will say that when a mum feeds her baby in public, the last thing she wants to do is flash everyone. She wants to be discreet; for her sake, for her baby’s sake, for everyone’s sake.

No matter how old her baby is: 15 days old, 15 weeks old, or 15 months old.

Pickle will be 15-months-old at the end of September, and he is still a very enthusiastic breastfeeder. I’m lucky; I’m surrounded by incredibly supportive family and friends who don’t bat an eyelid when I nurse my almost-toddler. However, I’m starting to get the “isn’t-he-too-old-for-that?” looks if I feed him when we’re out, and sadly, it makes me self-conscious.

Lovely Franny from Breastmates sent me one of her delicious new nursing tops (from her own Bump’n Boob range) to review, and the timing couldn’t be more perfect. While Pickle is (sometimes) easily distracted from needing his milky drink during the day, there are times when we’ve just got to feed. The Nurture top is so discreet; there’s no lifting up or pulling down. It has side access, which means there is very little flashin’ of the flesh. It doesn’t look like a breastfeeding top, which is a bonus, and I know I’ll continue to wear it when my boobs are my own again.

Breastmates Nurture Nursing Top

Every mum – brand new, or more “seasoned” – needs nursing clothes in which they feel comfortable and pretty (because let’s face it, being a stay-at-home-mum ain’t glamourous, so we have to make ourselves feel good somehow, right?!). The Nurture top definitely fits the bill. It is incredibly soft, beautifully designed, and a great fit. It will flatter every stage of breast fullness and belly roundness – during pregnancy and the course of mum-and-bub’s breastfeeding journey.

Breastmates Nurture Nursing Top

I love the way it drapes from the detailed neckline, the snug sleeves, and the elasticated hem – you can adjust where the top sits on your tummy or hips, which is a huge plus. I love the feel of the fabric, the colour is simply divine, and the fit is spot on. The design is so clever and thoughtful; you can tell Franny designed this with her mum hat on.

IMG_3881Outfit details: Breastmates Nurture Maternity and Nursing Top (in slate grey), black Doosh pants (which are probably 12+ years old and still firm faves), After the Rain blue leaf skeleton earrings
Awesome backdrop: the mountain ranges of Queenstown (Coronet Peak ski field is  to the right, out of shot)

The first time I ventured out on my own with Tiny, when he was about three weeks old, I rang a friend to ask her where I could breastfeed in the city. If I’d had this top, I wouldn’t have worried about any of that – feeding a screaming, over-tired, reflux baby would be a dream with the Nurture top. It allows for fuss-free feeding, which is so important when your little one is fussing!

(While this top was provided to me for the purpose of review, the opinions expressed here are entirely my own.)

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For the first time in aaaaages, I’m linking in with beautiful and stylish Kelly for

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What to Wear, What to Wear?

This weekend I’ll be hanging out with 60 of my newest friends in Christchurch for Around the Table – Bloggers Connecting.

There’s been a lot of discussion on Facebook and Twitter about people planning what to wear, and initially, I found myself caught up in this train of thought too.

And then I stopped and realised that worrying about what I’ll wear will essentially mean I won’t dress like myself, and in my mind, that’s tantamount to pretending I’m something I’m not.

If you’re a regular reader of my blog, you’ll know that I spend most of my days in jeans, tees and Chucks, therefore if you met me and I was wearing a designer mini dress with stiletto heels, you’d wonder what I was playing at. Likewise, if Miriam was to show up in anything other than one of her fabulous handmade dresses or skirts, we’d all do a double-take 😉

The truth is, I love fashion, and I love reading style blogs, but I also know that if I’m not comfortable in what I’m wearing, then I’m simply not comfortable.

I’ve found my own style that I hope suits me, that I feel good in, and that suits my lifestyle. I’ve had people comment on my “effortless cool” look, which is such a nice thing to hear, especially on those days when there has been no more thought put into an outfit than “Is there any dribble/food/snot on this?” and “Can I feed Pickle without flashing any strangers?” (yeah….apologies if I do flash anyone…)

So while I will put a little thought and effort into what I pack for the weekend (because to say I don’t care at all would be a lie), in all likelihood, you will see me wearing something like this…

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or this…

IMG_2757or this (there will definitely be a hopefully-less-dribbly baby as an accessory x)…

IMG_2856Linking up with Kelly (who will also be in Chch this weekend, no doubt looking as fabulous as always, hurrah!!!!) for

WWbuttonAND accepting Meghan’s challenge to get over myself – I hate my teeth, yet look up there ^^ TWO shots with teeth showing. Uh-huh, uh-huh *self-high-five*

Wardrobe Wednesday: those sleeves again

I know that most of New Zealand is desperate for more rain, but I am thoroughly enjoying this long hot summer we’ve been having. Yes, my vege garden is suffering a bit (although we have a pumpkin growing! A big, random, thank-you-compost pumpkin!), and parts of our lawn are looking a bit barren…but as I appear to be solar powered, I’ve been loving it.

IMG_2447I’m wearing top and skirt from Max, jandals by Havaianas, earrings from Colombia (a gift), bangles from H&M, sunglasses by Lacoste

I’ve been having fun getting lots of wear out of my summer wardrobe; there’s always something so final about those autumn days that call for cardigans and socks, and putting away my jandals is always a sad occasion.

WW1Last week we walked to kindy, and as I walked home, I enjoyed the silence (Pickle was asleep in the stroller), the heat, and the slight breeze that had the little chiffon scales of my sleeves fluttering against my skin like a hundred tiny butterflies.

IMG_2479I’m not 100% sure about the length of this skirt on me. I think it makes my legs look even shorter, and every so often I think about taking it up, but I never do – what do you reckon?

IMG_2480Tiny wears tee from John Lewis (a gift), shorts from Farmers, jandals by Oobi, grimace all his own :/

Pickle wears tee from JK, shorts from Pumpkin Patch, sock from JK, bib by Mum2Mum, hat by Purebaby.

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Linking up with Kelly over at Kiwi Womens Style for

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Dressing for Date Night

Last week, Tall and I celebrated four years of marriage with a lovely home-cooked meal, followed the next evening with dinner out.

It was our first proper date since before Pickle was born…when we went out for our third wedding anniversary. It’s a sad state of affairs, especially when we’re lucky enough to have babysitters (ie: my parents) living five minutes away, but when you’re breastfeeding an unpredictable little person, date nights become something of a distant memory.

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BEFORE

I spoke to my sister the afternoon of our date, and she asked if I was going to wear a skirt. I hadn’t decided, but told her I’d definitely wear heels.

I ended up wearing both.

I even managed to straighten my hair (and realise how desperately I need a trim), put on a bit of make up, and pull together a pretty acceptable outfit in a short period of time (because of course, that was the night Pickle decided not to be asleep by 7pm, and I was still shushing him in his room twenty minutes before our 8pm reservation).

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AFTER

Tall complimented me and told me I looked “very nice”, which I gladly accepted…but he was outdone by Tiny, whose eyes widened when I entered the lounge, where he gasped, “Look at YOU, mummy!”

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Heels…little ones, but still heels

I almost cried…but that would have made my mascara run, and we really had to leave. Not even three, and he already knows how to make the ladies swoon!

Outfit Details:
Dress: Doll House
Shoes: Platino
Bracelet: Esteem Jeweellery
Earrings: Etsy
Rings: wedding band and engagment ring from England

(I wore the same jewellery the day we were married…and for two out of our four anniversaries, I’ve also worn my bridal underwear. The two I haven’t…I was pregnant!)

Linking up at Kelly’s, the new home of

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Wardrobe Wednesday: Sleeves

A while ago, I won a Max voucher from Kiwi Women’s Style. This couldn’t have come at a better time – I was bored with all my clothes, frustrated at the too-quick changes to my breastfeeding body, and in desperate need of something pretty to cheer me up at being stuck indoors for a fair chunk of each day.

I initially had my eye on a beautiful satiny dress in Max. It was floaty and beachy, with a pattern I’d un-expertly describe as paisley-aztec. I was in love, and, armed with my wonderful voucher, I trotted off to the shop to try on the dress.

It did nothing for me.

They didn’t have my usual size, so I tried on the size up, and the size down. The size up looked like a tent; definitely not that one. The size down was perfect (surprisingly), but I discovered the dress had one major flaw: there was no possible way for me to breastfeed in it.

Now, I could still have bought the dress and caressed it as it hung, unworn, in my closet all summer, waiting, hoping to wear it next year, but I decided against it for two reasons:

1. the pattern was such that it probably wouldn’t be fashionable for long; and
2. out of the corner of my eye, I’d seen this top:

IMG_2240I love the colour, the sleeves, and the length. It’s made from the kind of fabric that clings to everything (especially those bits you really don’t want anything clinging to), but I can overlook that for the sleeves.

Sleeves

Best part of all? It was on sale, so I still have something like $8 left of the voucher to spend. Thanks Kelly!

IMG_2251Outfit details:
Top: Max
Jeans: Jeans West
Necklace: a gift from my sister
Earrings: swallows with pearls from an Etsy store
Bangle: Accessorize

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Linking up with Miriam for her last ever Wardrobe Wednesday as host

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Wardrobe Wednesday: the ‘W’ edition

Last week we went to a wedding in Waitotara, west(ish) of Whanganui. It was warm and windy, wonderful and well-worth the whirlwind weekend.

Aaah, my fourth form English teacher would be proud of all that alliteration.

The night before the little ones and I left (Tall came up the following day; flying with two was easier than expected, especially when air stewards and passengers alike were all so lovely and helpful), I spent a while trying on a load of dresses. One was a little tight in the chest area, so it got hung straight back up. Another fit well, but needs to be shortened. Another is my go-to dress, a dress I can easily nurse in – but this time, I would be sans bébé (which didn’t go so well, but hey, we all survived, despite Pickle’s stubborn refusal to take a bottle for five hours!), so it was gladly put away.

I settled on my very favourite LBD from Monsoon; another dress that conjures up strong memories.

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Please excuse my TERRIBLE posture! #needtogetbackintoyoga

It is the dress I wore when, at 11 weeks pregnant with Tiny and still suffering from severe morning sickness, we ate at Le Gavroche, Michel Roux Jr’s Michelin Two Star restaurant in London. We had an eight-course tasting menu, and it was d-i-v-i-n-e.

I love it. It has a v-shaped back and a wide neckline which gives me a bit of much-needed shoulder width. You possibly can’t tell from the photo, but it is slightly layered, and has a lovely, subtle movement to it.

My shoes were an easy choice: I was determined not to wear black, and so chose the strappy green ones that I knew I could walk in for a little while without feeling like a teetering baby giraffe. They were a good choice – the day was HOT – but I took them off as soon as we were seated for (thankfully-not-a-buffet) dinner…I am NOT a heels wearer!

Outfit details:
dress: Monsoon (London); shoes: Overland Footwear; earrings: Rockbourne Jewellery; circle bracelet: Oroton (a gift from my sister for my 30th); sparkly bracelet: Esteem Jewellery; flower hairtie: no idea…have had it for years!

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Linking up with Miriam for

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Memories in a Dress

The sun is shining this morning and we have some random jobs to do around town.

I decided that there is no reason not to wear a dress.

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I have two very distinct memories of wearing this dress.

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The first was fainting, at 14 weeks pregnant, on a very crowded morning peak-hour tube in London. I felt myself blacking out, felt my legs turn to jelly, and then heard a woman asking if I was okay. My first thought was, “I hope no one can see my knickers”, and when I opened my eyes, I was surrounded by space. It’s amazing how personal space is non-existent on a busy tube, until someone faints and then everyone wants out of the way. I almost cried at the kindness of the young woman who helped me up, got off at the next stop with me, sat with me until I was able to walk, and was no doubt late to work because of her wonderful soul.

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The second was my first day away from Tiny, when he was almost eight months old and I went on a wine tour for a friend’s hen’s day. I had a great day (when we went back to Akarua Winery earlier this month, I giggled about expressing milk in their bathroom), as did Tall and Tiny, but the dress was bursting at the buttons by the time I got home!

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Dress: Esprit (UK)
Shoes: Aldo (New York City)
Necklace: night market in Chiang Mai (Thailand)
Bangles: H&M and Accessorize (though the pink one was my sister’s as a girl)
Earrings: a gift (they are little pink roses)

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Linking up over at Miriam’s place

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Channeling My Inner-Miriam

One day last week, my husband arrived home and asked his usual question, “What have you guys been doing today?” with an unusual air of suspicion.

“I’ve been channeling my inner-Miriam,” I replied gaily.

*blank stare*

You see, I was wearing a dress. And a belt and bangles and a long dangly necklace. Most days when he gets home, I’ve already had to change at least once, and I’m usually in the kitchen in jeans or trackies.

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But it had been a warm, warm day, and I just felt like wearing a dress. We’d spent most of the day at home, popping out only to get a few groceries and a couple of things from The Warehouse.

I thought I’d feel too dressed up, but I didn’t. I felt pretty and feminine and relaxed and rather proud of myself for thinking of adding a belt to an otherwise-plain dress. I added a 3/4-sleeve swingy merino cardigan later, which also went under the belt, and I thought it looked pretty good, personally.

Also, do you like my impulse-buy silk top??

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I was buying coffee beans, and had forgotten that the best little coffee place in town only accepts cash; the lady is so lovely, and seeing me lugging in Pickle in his capsule, she sent me over the road to a second-hand designer store to get cash. I was feeling bad about just asking for cash, and while I waited my eyes fell onto something red and ruffly. I pulled it from the rack, saw it was roughly my size and about half the normal retail price, and fell promptly in love.

I wore it for our early Christmas celebration with my mum and dad; it was a hot day, but I was nice and cool, and it allowed for quick access when Pickle wanted Christmas lunch too.

Oh, and a couple of weeks ago I was wondering which shoes to wear to a wedding in Hanmer Springs. I desperately wanted to wear the pink stilettos, but I tried walking in them and felt (and looked) too much like a baby giraffe, so I ended up in a pair of slightly lower heels. Which I wore for an hour, and then swapped for jandals because I needed to pop Pickle in the Ergo, and my balance was thrown out in the heels.

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I didn’t get through all my shoes, either…there were some (like my wedding shoes) which I didn’t want to wear, and some that I didn’t get a chance to wear. But the point of the exercise was to stop automatically reaching for a pair of Chucks, and I definitely feel as though I’ve broken that habit. It’s been fun thinking about what shoes to wear, and I’ve realised that other shoes can be just as comfortable and practical.

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Linking up with Ms. Style herself for

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More Shoes…

Another week of not wearing a pair of Chucks, another step closer to wearing very impractical shoes. Shoes that Tiny likes to bring out of my wardrobe and tell me are “very pretty”. The boy has good taste in shoes.

I’ve recycled a couple of times this week, mostly due to ease of shoe-removal and other such practical considerations as the weather, jobs to be done, and time available. Which is where I usually fall back on a pair of my old faithfuls.

ShoesW5We have a wedding to go this weekend, and I can’t decide between these three pairs of rather high heels. My dress is black (boring, I know, but it’s the only dress I can breastfeed in), so I’m leaning more towards the pink (especially since they’re new)…unless you can convince me otherwise??

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Linking up over at Miriam’s for

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