Tag Archive for gifts

Romantic treats for Valentine’s Day

I’m a big fan of Valentine’s Day. In fact, you’ve probably already worked out, I’m a fan of any occasion! But, one that involves me, my husband and a bit of romance is always going to make me happy.

Sopwell House

Sopwell House

As with everything we do, we don’t like to follow the norm and just book a meal out on February 14. We like to find something just a touch different to do – that may even mean dining out on an alternative day that week and then indulging in an intimate meal for two at home on the day of love itself. It doesn’t need to be elaborate or expensive, but it does have to be special.

 

If you’re looking for inspiration to make your Valentine’s Day go with a bang, take a look at these ideas I’ve come across…
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Valentine’s Day – 20 gift ideas

It’s less than two weeks until the most romantic time of the year – Valentine’s Day! Whether you’re on the verge of getting married, are already old marrieds (like us!) or simply have your eye on someone special, it’s fun to make a fuss on February 14.

Take a look at this little round-up of 20 cute gifts and ideas I’ve struck upon on social media to make your day of romance go with a bang…

 

 

Links to suppliers…

What You Sow

Stella & Dot

SGT Smith

Balloon Baboon

All Things Interior

Amara

Hannah Kokoschka

Paperless Post

Bella and Bow

Blackbird House

Review: Go organic with Dr Bronner wedding favours

I’m a soap lover. Every Christmas and birthday, I ask for more scented soap. So, it was a pure pleasure to review these latest products…organic soaps by Dr Bronner.

 

When we got married, we were keen to offer our guests favours that would be used, that wouldn’t be left behind or wasted. What better gift to offer than a range of beautifully scented soaps made with organic oils enabling you to keep details of your wedding green as well as unique.

I requested a sample of the All-One Hemp Almond Pure-Castile Bar Soap as almond is one of my favourite smells. And it didn’t disappoint. The subtle, yet genuine aroma was fresh and made me think of holidays in the sun. Even better, the soap froths up a treat and lasts for weeks.

I was also sent a bottle of 18-in-1 Hemp Almond Pure-Castile Soap which not only has that delicious nutty smell to it, but it has 18 uses – hand wash, face wash, body wash, bath bliss, shampoo, shaving, toothpaste, foot bath, deodorant, dog wash, clearing congestion (Peppermint, Eucalyptus or Tea Tree are suggested), laundry, dishes, floors, all-purpose cleaning, fruit and veg wash, plant spray and ant spray!

 

I’d be thrilled to receive a Dr Bronner soap as a favour at a wedding!

 

 

Disclaimer: The Dr Bronner products were given free of charge in return for a review on this blog.

Review: Happy feet with Alice Bow insoles

It’s all very well putting together a stunning wedding outfit – as a bride, bridesmaid or guest – but will you be in love with your choice after several hours of wearing it? Take those killer heels, for a start. They may give you the perfect height and match your dress like a dream, but if they end up cast to the side of the dancefloor before the day is done, what is the point.

 

I have a pair of beautiful navy heels I’ve worn to a couple of weddings. Problem is, they’re a touch too big for me and I do that unclassy thing of walking out of them occasionally. With such low cut sides, it’s impossible to add an insole without it being seen – a total fashion faux pas!

Unsightly traditional insole on the right, compared to the pretty Alice Bow on the left

Unsightly traditional insole on the right, compared to the pretty Alice Bow on the left

So, when the uber pretty Alice Bow luxury Italian leather insoles arrived through my door, I had finally struck upon a solution! Not only do they add the very slight tighter fitting I needed, but they are padded to give your feet maximum comfort.

 

When the next event came around, I was all set to dance the night away in my favourite navy heels, this time comforted by the fact I could bust my moves without hurling an ill-fitting shoe across the venue! And, do you know what, the Alice Bow insoles did the trick; I kept my party shoes on all day and all night without complaint.

The Alice Bow insoles, made in London, come in a wide range of colours – including this beautiful Metallic Light Blue which is the ideal “something blue” for the bride and comes with a lucky six pence – and can transform your high street shoe into what looks like a far more expensive accessory with its imprinted name and shimmer.

 

Tag your photos #savedbyalicebow on socials!

 

 

Disclaimer: Alice Bow provided the insoles free of charge in return for a review on this blog.

 

 

Drinks: Cocktails and cider, anyone?

I’m not a big drinker, but am partial to a cocktail or a nice cold cider on a special occasion. So, with an inbox full of emails about the latest developments in this area of the booze market, I had to share.

Don’t panic if you’re on a strict weight management plan for your big day, as one even states it’s low in calories and full of real fruit juice – what’s not to like!

 

Whether you’re stocking up for your hen or stag parties, looking for somewhere to celebrate or want a signature cocktail for your big day, check these out for inspiration…
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Finances: DIY your way to a debt-free marriage

Shocking statistics by UK loan broker Freedom Finance show the number of people applying for wedding loans is on the rise. Between 2013 and 2015, UK couples applied for £151m in loans! In the first two months of this year, the company recorded £8.6m applications alone.

 

I realise weddings generally cost a fortune, but starting married life with a stressful debt hanging over your heads cannot be conducive to a happy home. We only spent seven months planning our big day, but we both worked super hard in that time to earn the money we needed as we went along, ensuring we started our new chapter with zero wedding debt. These days, it’s also commonplace to ask guests to gift money towards a honeymoon and that’s how we paid for our luxury trip to Turkey.

 

But, there are other ways to cut the cost of your dream wedding.

 

Paula Gorry of Stampin’Up! demonstrates how there’s money to be saved by getting creative, making your own invitations, thank you cards, bunting and table centre pieces.

Handing over the blog to Paula…
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I Love…Our Annie & Wilf gift for This Morning wedding

As is often the case these days, our dear friends – the This Morning wedding couple – didn’t have a gift list and so we gifted them cash instead. But, I couldn’t resist giving Annie and Gareth, the new Mr and Mrs Lewis, a keepsake from one of my favourite suppliers.

 

Annie & Wilf produce the most beautiful, personalised, pretty, handmade textile items. So, I couldn’t go along to a wedding without a bespoke fabric heart featuring the couple’s names and wedding date, with matching handmade card.

I hope it will take pride of place in the couple’s family home and remind them of their incredible wedding day aboard the HQS Wellington on the Thames, with the likes of Philip Schofield, Holly Willoughby, Gok, Alison Hammond, Rylan Clark, Phil Vickery, Eric Lanlard and Peter Andre – and Mr Robertson and I – as guests!

The first live This Morning wedding – we were there!

Wow. There is no other word, but wow. To say yesterday’s first ever live wedding on ITV’s This Morning was incredible would be an understatement.

Our dear friends Annie and Gareth were the lucky pair to be chosen to get wed in front of the nation aboard the HQS Wellingon on the Thames, just across the water from the television studios.


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My friend, the This Morning bride!

Do you ever watch those mind-blowing experiences on TV and wonder what it would feel like to be chosen to take part? To be sent on an exotic holiday or take delivery of a luxury car…or have your dream wedding day planned for you. Well, it turns out, those fantasies do become reality for real people!

 

When I spotted ITV’s This Morning was looking to throw a wedding this spring, I knew the exact people who should put themselves forward. My good friend Annie is, thankfully, just coming out the other side of a hellish year, having discovered a lump in her breast while watching a feature on This Morning this time last year urging women to check themselves.

During her 12 months of treatment, losing her hair, feeling poorly and terrified, one thing that kept playing on her mind was maybe never getting the chance to marry her man, Gareth. They had already got engaged, but finances and then Annie’s illness meant any solid plans to become man and wife had to go on the backburner indefinitely.

 

And then came This Morning Throws A Wedding.
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