This week I worked on a post for the Laura Ashley blog, with some of my favourite last minute Christmas stocking fillers. I’m a bit of a last minute shopper myself so I find gift guides really helpful. I picked some lovely pieces from Laura Ashley that would make great presents for friends and relatives.

I like gifts that can be used, so candles, make-up bags and scarfs are great choices. I love choosing pretty thanks with designs and patterns that suit the person I’m giving the gift to. Luckily Laura Ashley has lots of choice.

My first pick, is this lovely set of floral socks. I chose these ones because the colours are so pretty and the vintage style roses are gorgeous.

As I mentioned above, I love presents that people can use. Candles and reed diffusers make great gifts that can be enjoyed for months after Christmas. Laura Ashley has a wide range of fragrances to choose from. My favourite is the No1 scent 

A scarf is also a gorgeous gift, I love this floral vintage style one. I also really like some of Laura Ashley’s knitted and velvet scarfs, perfect for different occasions and outfits.

 I have absolutely loads of vintage jewellery and I really enjoy finding new ways to display it around the house. I love the adorable bird trinket dish and think it would make a charming stocking filler.  

For larger pieces of jewellery like brooches the heritage jewellery box would be perfect. Its like a lovely little treasure chest. This would be a lovely present with a little piece of jewellery inside as an extra thoughtful gift.  

Another lovely gift for someone with lots of trinkets, is an antique style glass trinket pot. This would look splendid on a dressing table and makes an excellent small Christmas gift.  

I often get purses and make up bags as stocking fillers. They are another gift that will always come in handy. There are lots of different prints, sizes and designs at Laura Ashley. I chose the Highland Heather print, as I love the opulent winter colours. I think it mixes and matches really well with the velvet purse. These would make a gorgeous gift either together or separately.  

My final gift is the pretty Iona cup and saucer. This would be a great gift for a tea drinker and I really like the classic vintage look of this set. There are lots of lovely tea sets to choose from at Laura Ashley. If the person you’re buying for prefers coffee, a ceramic take away coffee cup would be a lovely present too.  

To get in time for Christmas, visit a Laura Ashley shop. You can find the full list here. If you’re looking for something nice for yourself, the Laura Ashley sale is in full swing.

Have you still got gifts to buy, or are you wrapped and ready to go?

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At the beginning of the month I was completely ready to get into Blogmas and keep the posts coming all month. It was all going so well for the first few and then I had to stop. I did have quite a lot planned for Blogmas, so I’m going to try to pick up where I left off. I may even manage more than one post a day. We’ll see!

This time of year is so incredibly busy, especially for the kids. It feels like there’s been something happening school nearly every day. Luckily I think all the fairs, discos, concerts etc are all done now and I have a couple of days before they break up to get caught up.

This week I’ve had lots of writing deadlines for magazines and other things I write for. I usually try not to leave it all to the last minute, but December is crazy and I’ve ended up with a lot to do all at once! Luckily I love what I do, so despite being a bit stressful it all OK!

Both Rob and I both have birthdays in December, so there’s already been lots of presents and celebrating in our house. I’ve only just taken all our birthday cards down and started to put the Christmas cards up!

Other than lots of work, birthday celebrations and being a mum, I’ve managed to get most of my shopping done now, apart from a few last minutes things that I still need to get. I’m feeling very grateful for my Amazon Prime right now!

Hopefully normal activity will resume tomorrow, I have a few posts I really want to share with you before Christmas is over. I hope you are all feeling festive and looking forward to the big day. I have friends who are working over Christmas and if you are too, I just want you to know you are appreciated!

The pictures in this post were taken at Petersham Nurseries lovely Covent Garden shop. I popped in their earlier to look at all the lovely things. It’s well worth a visit if you’re in London. I already love their gorgeous site in Petersham.

In other news, I would love it if you could check out my latest blog sponsor. The Vintage New Year’s Party is a fabulous vintage celebration on the South Bank. Check out the website here.

Things are getting very festive in my house at the moment. The tree is up, the cupboards are stocked with tasty treats and the Elf on the Shelf is getting up to lots of mischief. It’s definitely time to start mixing up seasonal cocktails! Eggnog is the ultimate winter cocktail, it takes a little while to make, but the results are definitely worth it. I found this recipe in a 1960s recipe book and I absolutely love it.

Eggnog Recipe

You will need:

2 eggs

2 tbsp sugar

1 part whisky

1 part dark rum

1 part brandy

2 parts milk

2 parts thick cream

A pinch of ground cloves

A pinch of ground nutmeg

Eggnog Recipe

  1. Separate the eggs into two separate bowls
  2. Beat the egg yolks until smooth and add half the sugar.
  3. Add the whisky rum and brandy to the yolks, while stirring continuously.
  4. Set the yolk mixture aside and beat the egg whites until stiff, while adding the rest of the sugar.
  5. Stir the milk and cream into the yolk mixture.
  6. Fold the stiff egg whites into the yolk mixture.
  7. Spoon into glasses and sprinkle with the ground cloves and nutmeg.

What are your favourite winter drinks? Look out for more recipes over the next few days.

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One of the things I have enjoyed most since I got into vintage, would have to be the social side. I love going to new events and meeting new people. There is nothing more fun than immersing myself in times gone by. I adore getting dressed up, curling my hair and putting on my make-up. Choosing an outfit that fits an era from the past, while still being totally me. Vintage themed events are the perfect place to do this. Whether you’re a vintage pro, or new to wearing vintage, or someone who just wants to do something a bit different for a special occasion going vintage is so much fun.  

A Vintage New Year's Eve Party

For the last few years, there has been one News Years event that has really stood out from the vintage crowd. An event that brings together everything I love about vintage. From retro fashion to learning new dance moves and enjoying a whole range of musical styles.  The ultimate place to see in the new year vintage style would have to be A Vintage New Year’s Eve Party curated by Hemingway Design. For one night only The Royal Festival Hall is transformed into a vintage wonderland with 5 floors of glamour, music and dancing.  

A Vintage New Year's Eve PartyIn recent years the Hemingways have brought us some of the best vintage events on the scene, from the amazing Classic Car Boot Sale to Vintage by the Sea. Their New Years festivities are the ultimate event for those of us with our heads in the past, allowing us to see in the new year across the whole of the 20th Century. I’ve loved other Hemingway events I’ve been to over the years and this one is definitely right up my street, especially because my love of vintage spans across lots of different eras and musical styles.  

A Vintage New Year's Eve PartyThe event includes vintage night clubs, dining, a vintage hair and beauty salon. One of the biggest highlights of the night would have to be the opportunity to have an incredible close up view of London’s spectacular firework display from The Royal Festival Halls terrace.  

A Vintage New Year's Eve PartyFrom past experience of their events, you can expect the very best entertainment and wonderfully organised details. Past reviews of their New Years event have always been excellent. What a fabulous excuse to get completely dressed up in your finest vintage attire and disappear into the past with your friends for a few hours. The event brings you not one party, but several. There is definitely something there for all tastes, whether you love rock n roll or disco, tropical tunes or big band ballads. So what can expect at A Vintage New Year’s Eve Party? 

A Vintage New Year's Eve PartyIf your favourite vintage era is the 20s, 30s or 40s The Torch Club is the place to be. The club will feature a big band from Alex Meedham and his 18 piece orchestra. There will also be original vinyl spun by DJ Daddy Rich and for those of you who need to polish up your vintage dance moves Mark & Hoc will be there to talk you through some dance steps. This is the perfect opportunity to bring out your inner flapper in a beaded dress or channel some old Hollywood glamour, don’t forget your red lipstick! 

A Vintage New Year's Eve Party

For fans of the 50, the Tiki Bar will be serving up colourful cocktails. Expect sambas and mambos, alongside hula girls limbo lancing. Tropical is the theme of the night. If you like to dress tiki-tastic and love tropical prints and bamboo jewellery then this is the one for you! 

For a more classic 50s night jive dance teacher Andrew Hall will be on hand to talk you through jive basics in Let it Rock, so there’ll be no excuse not to hit the dance floor. There will be plenty of American and early British rock n roll.

A Vintage New Year's Eve PartyBar Bonkers is a throwback to the 80s and 90s, with plenty of pop, rock and dance anthems, so you can party like it’s 1989. To top it off there will be musical bingo and karaoke. As much as I love to 40s and 50s for the fashion, I absolutely love the 80s and 90s for music, so this sounds right up my street! 

A Vintage New Year's Eve PartyI am also a huge fan of disco so The Studio sounds amazing too. This area will trace legendary disco club nights from the 70s and 80s, through to modern-day. Expect everything from funk and disco, to electro and Northern Soul. Put on your dancing shoes and show everyone your best moves! 

I think this is such a fabulous line up and an amazing way to see in the new year. The night is an amazing opportunity to put on your favourite vintage style outfit from any era and go back to years gone by without needing a time machine. I’ve enjoyed every Hemingway event I’ve been to. The fabulous organisation and attention to every detail make their events some of the very best. One of my favourite things is checking out what everyone else is wearing, as well as putting on something fabulous myself.  

Tickets for A Vintage New Year’s Eve Party are available here 

*This post was Kindly sponsored by The South Bank Centre. All opinions are my own. 

I don’t blog that much about being a mummy or what I spend my time doing with my daughters. But Christmas is one of those times of year that really is all about them. I love involving them in all my festive planning and its lovely when they get involved with making and baking. There are so many things you can do with your kids at Christmas and here are 5 of the things we’ve done so far.

Writing a Letter to Santa

I love writing letters to Santa, this year me and Lila both wrote one! As well as asking for toys, Lila said she hoped Santa had an amazing Christmas and that her family would all have a happy Christmas too. This is the last week to send yours out if you would like to get a reply. Find out more on the Royal Mail website.

Seeing some Reindeer

Our local garden centre not only has tree, a grotto and lots of lovely Christmas displays, it also has some reindeer for the kids to look at. This definitely adds a little Christmas magic to a simple outing.

Elf on the Shelf

As I mentioned a couple of days ago, we are doing Elf on the Shelf this year. I love this new tradition and so far we have had loads of fun doing it. For kids it really can be a magical time off year and the elf just adds to this. You can pick up your own elf on Amazon.

Baking

I love baking and I love to get my kids involved when they want to. Last weekend Jess entered a bake off at her schools Christmas fair and made this fab cake almost completely on her own. Doesn’t it look good! I was so proud. She even won a prize for it! I’m going to do a separate post on the cake later in the week.

Decorating the Tree

Nothing is more simple or fun, then putting all the decorations on the tree. I just let the kids put them wherever they want and I can always neaten them up later. Every year each of us chooses a new special decoration, so that each year our collection gets even more special.

These are some of the things we’ve done so far. I’ll been blogging about more Christmas stuff as we do it. I’m blogging every day in December, so be sure to follow me or keep checking back for more seasonal posts.

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