As an ambassador for Quinny I am lucky enough to be able to try all of their gorgeous products and the Quinny Yezz is one of my personal faves. The Yezz is about to get a huge workout in my family as we are just about to travel to Europe (after the footy season of course) and plan to take the Yezz with us as it is perfect for travelling and long layovers in airports because it easily folds up and you can take it onto the plane with you. Yep- it is easily stored in your overhead cabin and has a shoulder strap so you can wear it like a back pack too- it is so light (only 5kgs!).
The Quinny Yezz can be used from 6 months of age up to a weight of 17kgs. It has been specially designed to easily switch between pushing and carrying the buggy. With only one simple move, the buggy can be folded into a highly compact package making sure that the Mumma (or Dad!) has flexibility and freedom. The Quinny Yezz is fitted with skating wheels, giving the buggy an urban look and maximum manoeuvrability. What I was most surprised with given its super light weight, was its strength and sturdiness (apparently due to some whizz bang high performance plastic).
The Quinny Yezz features a storage pocket (up to 2 kgs) and sun canopy (rain cover is optional) and comes in 5 cool colours. My personal fave is the Sulpher Focus (the bright yellow)- so bright and happy!
It’s not hard to see why this buggy has won so many design awards and is hard to get your hands on (flying off the shelves)- it is simply awesome and perfect for tackling every challenge in the city. LOVE IT!
RRP: $499. For more info head to www.quinny.com/au
To watch an awesome video featuring the Yezz showing off its manoeuvrability and lightweight credentials, check this out!
‘Oh not again’- that’s what I thought when I read Katherine Chatfield’s article (here) on the Herald Sun website earlier today. Another mummy shaming/bashing/bullying article.
‘Poor Teresa Palmer’- that was my next thought. What had she done to deserve the scorn of Katherine? Umm, well she gave birth naturally and breastfeeds her child, seemingly with ease. Yes, I’m for real. So what’s wrong with that? Well apparently she’s showing off and she needs to stop being so boastful. Ridiculous huh? Yep.
What gives me the shits so much about this article is that the author is perpetuating the very problem that so many women inflict on each other- this nasty, judgemental thing we call parenting shaming and the phenomena which is ‘mummy bullying’. In a society where we are trying hard to promote women and mothers being supportive of each other and respecting each others varied and unique parenting styles (as long as the child is safe, healthy, happy and loved right?), an article like this comes along which just turns the movement on its head.
A woman who gives birth naturally and breastfeeds her child should be celebrated not shamed. A woman who keeps fit while pregnant and bounces back to her pre baby body quickly should be celebrated, not shamed (because she had a crack at you too Miranda and Giselle- duh, of course you’re supermodels so are naturally going to be hotter pre and post baby than the average woman, actually just hotter than all of us in general). A mother whose baby sleeps through the night should be congratulated too (how lucky!) not shamed, and a mother who returns to work because she has a great career and is most probably the family’s bread winner should be celebrated too, not shamed. As long, of course, as the baby is safe, healthy, happy and loved.
Likewise, a woman who has a cesearean or an epidural should be celebrated (you grew a HUMAN!), not shamed. A woman whose baby won’t sleep through the night needs to be supported, not shamed. A woman who has difficulty breastfeeding, a poor milk supply and has cracked, bleeding nipples must be celebrated (for giving it a go) and supported (because bleeding nipples are excruciating- I speak from experience). If this mother decides formula is the best option for her and her baby, then she needs to be celebrated for looking after her/her baby, not shamed.
It seems, unfortunately, that you just can’t win in the world of parenting. You’re damned if you do and you’re damned if you don’t
Upon reading this article I decided to check out Teresa Palmer’s instagram account just to see what all of her “boasting” was about. All I saw was a gorgeous mum and a divine baby. A mother whose instagram pics were no different to my own or any of my friends who are mums. She is happy, healthy and enjoying the first few months of motherhood with her precious Bodhi. She is breastfeeding and is clearly loving life. Good for her. Is she a show off- hell no.
The bigger issue at play here is why mums and women in general I guess, are so affected by another woman’s appearance, lifestyle, pregnancy and parenting choices? Why do girls get so wound up and sensitive as to what another woman is doing with her life? Memo to everyone, stop worrying about what Teresa, Miranda, Jodi and Giselle are doing and think about why another woman’s life (usually a strangers) affects yours so much? That’s the bigger issue here. Focus on yourself and stop worrying about what everyone else is doing. Upon discussing this with one of my best girlfriends who is pregnant herself (and equally outraged over this article) she agreed, “Make your own decision for what is right for you… and who gives a ‘F’ about what anyone else does!! If it’s not your baby or your body, it really has no impact on you… so who cares. And isn’t it awful, that by all accounts becoming a parent is the hardest thing you’ll ever do, but instead of supporting each other, women openly and silently judge each other.” I know the author of the article agrees with me on this but at the same time she is doing exactly the opposite of what she is telling us all to do- not to judge.
I had an epidural when I gave birth to both of my children (thank the Lord almighty!) but Teresa and Miranda gave birth drug free and were happy to let people know of their fantastic achievement. Did I think either one of them were showing off- no. Was I resentful of them? No. My feelings are this- I think they are both amazing and they should feel super proud because giving birth drug free is an incredible effort and something that I never wish to experience haha!!
Teresa it seems, is still breastfeeding her baby and I am not. I went back to work after 3 months and as soon as I had a couple of days away from Billie my previously abundant milk supply dried up (just like that). Would I prefer to be breastfeeding Billie now? Of course. Do I carry mother’s guilt because of it? Of course (mother’s guilt will get you at every turn of the parenting journey). Do I think breastfeeding mums who talk about how much they enjoy breastfeeding and how easy it is for them are boasting? No. I think, “lucky you.”
So what am I getting at? There are a million ways to skin a cat (ie. parent) so lets just all take a chill pill, relax and support other mothers instead of bullying them. And I wish our big media companies would stop publishing rubbish articles like the one in question. Parenting is the hardest thing you’ll ever do and if you are one of those mums who is so negatively affected by what other mums (namely celebrities) are doing, then the answer is simple- “UNFOLLOW.”
Peace and love to all you mummas out there. You’re all doing a WONDERFUL job.
Question from anonymous: Hi Bec, I’m sure I’ve read that you love a statement jacket. I’m currently a stay at home mum and need to lift my game when it comes to my daily uniform. Can you recommend some of your fave jackets suitable for day wear with jeans etc (and at different prices points)? Thanks Bec x
Answer: Ahh the SAHM wardrobe. Ummm I’m pretty guilty of rocking the old exercise gear to be honest. My husband owns Jaggad (an apparel company) so I’m usually slothing around the house in their tights and tops (here). But for days when I make the effort to dress in something properly I always go with a mixture of the items below:
- Skinny leg jeans
- leather leggings (pleather/’vegan leather’ for a lower price point)
- A variety of knits (Witchery, Skin and Threads, Portmans)
Question from anonymous: Hey Bec! Your wedding is my inspiration. I am currently wedding planning and at the moment the colour scheme is white/cream. Thinking I need to bring in another colour especially for flowers and invites. It’s a summer wedding. What are your thoughts ? X
Answer: You know me- I’m an ‘all white’ girl when it comes to flowers and weddings so I would consider bringing some green foliage into the mix to break it up a bit. However, if you’re dead set on a colour then I’m still loving pastels- you can’t go wrong as they are just a hint of colour without being garish or something you’ll look back on and regret. At the moment I’m loving salmon, mint, dusty pink and lilac. To keep hubby happy, I’d probably go a mint or salmon as they are a little more gender neutral. For lots of gorgeous inspiration- you should check out The Style Co who did my wedding as they have lots of pretty pics on their site here
Question from anonymous: Hi Bec, I’ve recently redecorated our bedroom and the last thing to do is find the pendant lights. I’ve been looking for the right ones and seeing your bedroom on The Style School I know they are exactly what I’m after. I contacted Fenton & Fenton but they don’t recall having those lights. Could you possibly tell me the brand so I can continue my search? Thank you!
Answer: I bought these lights from Fenton & Fenton a couple of years back now so that’s probably why they couldn’t recall having them. Check out About Space lighting for some great pendants. I really like these ones here, here and here.
Question from Prudence: Hey Bec, just a warning, this is going to be a uber boring question because its all about the flooring. Anyway, how did you decide the type of flooring for the rooms in your home (which is absolutely stunning by the way), particularly the bedrooms. Your work is absolutely inspiring. Love Prudence
Answer: Hi there- I wanted concrete floors in the living area as they are so easy to maintain and I wanted them to be flush from inside to outside, right up to the edge of the pool. I hate tiles on the floor (grout lines-eek) and wanted a seamless, flat look hence the concrete. For the upstairs kids’ and guest rooms I wanted timber flooring as concrete is too cold for children’s rooms in both looks and function (also, polished concrete is so heavy that we would have needed to spend extra $$$ on footings just to be able to hold upstairs up). Timber has a warm look to it and coupled with gorgeous rugs, really looks fantastic and provides some comfort underfoot. It is much cheaper to change a rug than an entire carpeted floor- that’s another reason we went for timber floors. Oh and spills and mess is easy to mop up too.
Question from Justine: Hi Bec, I’m looking at purchasing the Chevron rug from Click on Furniture that you originally had in your lounge room. I’ve noticed that you have changed it to the Golden Thread Striped rug. Was this just for aesthetic reasons? I don’t want a rug that is high maintenance any advice would be appreciated. Thanks & I’m loving your styling tips!!
Answer: Oh I love my Chevron rug and it is much more comfortable than most of the Chevron rugs (which are dhurries) on the market. The reason I removed it for The Style School was purely for aesthetic reasons because I had too much chevron going on around the house and needed to tone it down a bit. I have the chevron rug in the cupboard and will bring it out again when I’m ready for some more Chev! It is much more comfortable than the current one I have down.
Chris, from AGL, and I going through my Home Energy Check Up
When we moved into our new house, one of the first things I worried about was the size of our energy bill and our greenhouse gas emissions. I am a greenie at heart and am forever feeling guilty about the negative environmental impact the human race is having on our planet. I like to do whatever I can to ensure my carbon footprint in minimised. So imagine my guilt at the fact we’d upgraded to a huge 3 storey, 5 bedroom, 4 bathroom house with a basement. To make our house comfortable and liveable we have so many pumps, vents, contraptions, tanks, panels etc working 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. I’m talking a pool which fills itself with water, doses it’s own chlorine and salt and cleans itself, an underwater tank which pumps water to the gardens, venting systems in the basement to make sure clean air is being pumped through, sewerage pumps in the basement to literally push s#*t uphill, not to mention heating and cooling systems over 3 levels- the list goes on. And then we got our first power bill…………… EEK!
A few things I’ve said to my husband since we’ve moved in:
- “lets not use the heating in the spa on a cloudy day when the solar doesn’t work and just swim in the (freezing cold) pool.”
- “lets not put the bubbles on, you can hear the pump straining, it must be using heaps of energy.”
- “lets not use any air-con (when it was 45 degrees and I was 9 months pregnant!), we can just sleep without sheets/blankets on the beds.”
- “lets not use the heating at night, we can wear our ugg boots to bed and just put on 3 doonas instead.”
While I am all for the sensible use of electricity (i.e put a jumper on if you’re cold instead of the heater!), some of my suggestions were just ridiculous. My husband’s replies were often, “why build your dream home and then not be able to use any of its features?” and “shut up you crazy lady.”
Lucky for us, our house had to be built to a 6 star energy rating, so things like double glazed glass, LED lights, an underwater rain tank and solar water panels were a given. But for other energy saving tips we enlisted AGL to come by and do a Home Energy Check up. I learned so much and realised that we could still live in our house and use it as we intended to, with some practical and affordable solutions for how to do this.
Now many of you may roll your eyes at me and think “how did she not know this?” but let me tell you, the energy saving tips AGL gave me were fantastic. Here is my list:
- Change the pool to ‘winter mode’ as it is not being used as much. This includes less cleaning or need for programmes to be running.
- Close doors in rooms which are being heated or cooled to create ‘zones’ thus using your heating/cooling more effectively.
- A simple one- turn appliances/gadgets off at the power source at the wall (of course I knew this one already). But one thing I didn’t think of was turning my iPhone charger off at the wall, because although it may not be charging my iPhone, it’s still draining HEAPS of energy.
- Seal doors and windows appropriately with weather strips to stop draughts as the transfer of air from cool to warm and vice versa, results in using more energy to heat or cool a room. You can gain little hints on where draughts are coming from if there is dirt inside the sill or spider webs (spiders need an exit strategy!)
- Consider external blinds on windows to stop heat transfer through the glass in summer.
- Use LED lights and appliances (i.e. TV) everywhere you can. We have LED ceiling lights but realise we need to get them for our pendant lights and chandeliers too.
- Consider solar power ($9899 to install but saves $1108 per year off your bills)
- In winter, the heater can be set to 19 degrees- this is plenty warm enough. In summer, the air-conditioning can be set to 24 degrees- this is plenty cool enough.
So I have some great tips to work into my daily life now and as you can see, they don’t require a huge effort nor will they really effect the way I use my home. Looks like I can take my ugg boots off when I go to bed now- phew!
If you’d like to book an AGL Home Energy Check Up then here is the link here.
After the first drop sold out in record time I have some exciting news guys- Cotton On have just relaunched their awesome kids’ linen and room range at a super affordable price. It is almost too good to be true and I urge you to buy now before sit sells out again (which it will, it’s only a matter of time)!
Bursts of fashion-driven print, colour and texture make up the range of stylish sheet and quilt covers plus cushions and decorative home accessories including cute paper lanterns, mini wooden houses and removable chalk boards. The entire range is made to be mixed and matched- what fun!
I must admit I was ELATED to find the bed linen range (which is 100% cotton) also comes in double and queen sizes for the big kids too. With prices from just $49.95 for a quilt cover, I can see this range becoming a huge success. Bravo Cotton on.
Shop the look at cottonon.com.au
Single Quilt Cover- $49.95
Pillow Case- $15
2 Cushions- $20 each
Total value- $104.95
Images Chris Putnam
What a night!
On Thursday we celebrated the official launch of Beauty EDU with a fabulous party at our Melbourne campus. After months of slogging it out to build this incredible school it was great to sit back and see it all come together. I feel so proud to call myself a co-founder!
There was a real buzz throughout the space, glowing under gorgeous soft pink lights. The Veuve was flowing, as were the delicious Lychee blossom cocktails, not to mention incredible canapés by Food & Desire, featuring prosciutto and preserved fig with fresh apple, and snapper ceviche served with toasted tortillas and coriander – YUM. (Did anyone else just accidentally drool a little bit on their keyboard?!)
Our Beauty EDU students were on hand offering a variety of delish treatments including mini manicures and hand massages in the Nail Lounge and makeup refreshers at the Beauty Bar – genius! Thinking this should be a permanent fixture at parties everywhere.
It was so exciting to introduce our business and product partners to the industry, including Epicure, Synergy, Kester Black and Youngblood Cosmetics. And basically to just shout from the rooftops that Beauty EDU has officially arrived. Bloody exciting stuff!
If you’d like more information on our offering, head to beautyedu.edu.au
I’ve had many ‘Ask Bec’ questions relating to where I could recommend an inexpensive evening dress from and this one from Asos is a winner. Made from stretch jersey and available in 3 colours (how striking is the red?!) this dress is perfect for any formal occasion and given its stretchy nature and lack of seams across the belly, is also perfect for the preggy pregs.
Did I mention it is less than $65!!!
Buy it here
If you’ve been reading this blog you’d know that I’m SUPER excited to be travelling to New York from 29th May- 4th June next year as a guest of Insider Experience. From Yoga in Central Park, to a gospel brunch in the heart of Harlem, to Broadway shows, to a cocktail party overlooking Times Square plus a styling session with yours truly at some of New York’s hottest shopping haunts (to mention just some of the activities). This trip is the ultimate bucket list of luxury experiences and I cannot wait for May to come around and urge you all to join me (click here for more info). Bring your girlfriends, you boyfriend, your husband, whoever! It’s going to be a hoot!
As part of the sweet deal with Insider Experience, lucky guests will be able to experience the 5 star accommodation of the newly opened WestHouse Hotel. The hotel is an entirely new hospitality concept where guests are treated as ‘Residents’ who enjoy an elevated level of intuitive service in an environment reminiscent of a luxurious New York Townhouse. This concept I believe, is GOLD as it will enable guests to feel like they’re living like a New Yorker rather than just a global traveller who is staying at another big name hotel where really, you could be anywhere in the world. I love the authenticity that WestHouse brings to this travel experience.
This concept, a first in New York, allows guests to enjoy an array of amenities, all of which are included in the Insider Experience tour price: Breakfast, Afternoon Tea, Hors d’oeuvres and Evening canapés, Premium alcoholic beverages, non-alcoholic beverages and Barista coffees (YES!!!!) served daily in The Den and The Terrace, together with Wi-Fi Internet (to upload all of your instagram pics!), Local and Toll-Free Calls, Access to Business services and digital newspapers and magazines.
Designed by award-winning design and architecture firm, Jeffrey Beers International, WestHouse’s interiors evoke 1920’s glamour and each of the 172 guest rooms are replete with custom-made furnishings and fittings, luxurious bespoke DayNa Decker bath and body products, specially designed 400 thread-count bed linens, and professional hair styling system by GHD so no need to pack your hairdryer or straightener (umm, sold!).
If you’d like to experience WestHouse Hotel and all that the Insider Experience New York tour has to offer then head here for more information. I hope to see you all in NYC baby!
If you’ve been following this blog and in particularly, The Style School series, you’d know that I have a healthy obsession with bold hits of colour and gelato pastels. That’s why Life with Bird’s Spring ’14 collection strikes a fashionable chord with me- muted lilac’s, lemon yellows and punches of colour in graphic prints. They say people like to dress like their interiors don’t they (or did I make that up?).
Some of the dresses in this collection will be perfect come Spring Racing Carnival and I think if you wear the first dress on Oak’s Day in the Fashion on the Field comp, you may just walk away with the loot!
Now can we just talk about THOSE Seduction leather leggings- whaaaaaaaaaat?! The graphite colour is so versatile and the pattern is something I haven’t yet seen in a leather legging. Well done guys (cue applause).
To shop the look, head to lifewithbird.com
My Nook Couch- love it!
Question from Jenni Farr: Hi Bec I want your honest opinion. I live in Perth and want to order a Jardan “Nook” modular sofa. As it is quite an expensive purchase and I can’t get to see it in “person” – can you tell me whether or not it is really comfortable? I would hate to order it and get it shipped over and then not be happy with it. Thanks Jenni
Answer: Hi Jenni, yes it is an expensive purchase- especially without having seen it in real life! I can assure you though that it is the most comfortable couch EVER! It has a nice, wide, seat depth and is just lush. We love it. When it comes to incredible functionality and original design, you can do no better than Jardan. Trust me, you won’t regret it. My only concern is to make sure you’ve seen lots of fabric samples before you purchase- have Jardan sent some out to you? My other tip is to make sure you order a couch which is big enough. If you’re torn between two sizes then always go with the bigger one. I learnt that lesson the hard way!
Question from anonymous: Hi Bec, how do you manage to fit exercise into your day? I have just had my 3rd child and have a husband who works away, I also work from home…my days seem to escape me. I have always exercised in the past but am finding it difficult to fit it all in now.
Answer: Good question! I really struggle at times and just have to get out there and do it whenever I have the chance. I have some help with the kids a couple of days a week which I usually fill up with work meetings but if I happen to have an hour or so free then I’ll book in a class at Be Active Physio. If the class times don’t suit my schedule then I’ll do a session in our gym at home. In June I was so busy that I didn’t exercise at all. Now that work has calmed down I can get back into it before life gets too busy again. So my advice- just go hard when you can!
Sometimes when I’m really busy but feeling all sloth like and gross because I haven’t exercised for ages, I find that if I can do a quick hit of intense cardio, I will feel so much better. So another tip- if you have even 10 or 15 minutes free, go for a quick run or jump on an exercise bike. My spin bike routine at home consists of a 5 minute sprint series (30 seconds on, 30 seconds off), 5 minute hill climb series, and a 5 minute tabata (High Intensity Interval Training). See here to learn what a tabata is.
Question from Emily Crawford: Hi Bec, I was just wondering how your butlers pantry is positioned in correspondence to your AMAZING kitchen? I was also wondering what sort of doors you have on your bedrooms? Thanks heaps
Answer: Hi Emily, the doorway is just to the left of my integrated fridge, which is to the left of the stove top. Our doors to our bedrooms are just plain painted ones. I wanted something fancier but we ran out of money- oops!
Question from Sarah H: Hi Bec, I’m loving the Style School series, it’s a beautiful way to share interior design in an accessible way. I noticed you have the details for the beautiful sheer curtains which feature in most of your rooms. Do you have blinds, or something else behind them to block out light/ keep in heat during the night? I love this look and would like to replicate it in a practical way. Thanks!
Answer: Hi Sarah, I have concealed block out roller blinds behind them. They do the job and are cheap.
Question from Karen Wilson: Hi bec, in the sunday style magazine on 29th june you mentioned some satchets that you use to help your hair and nails. I am just wondering what the name of them were. My husband threw the magazine away before I could write it down! Karen
Answer: Hi Karen, it’s Proplenish and can be bought here. Its awesome (I wish I could remember to take it more often!)
Question from anonymous: Hey Bec, I just wanted to know what camera (or cameras!) you use for your photos on your blog. They are amazing!
Answer: HAHA! I think my photos are rubbish but thanks anyway. I use a Canon G12 but I’m such an idiot when it comes to using it that I know I’m not getting the best out of it. I usually use it on ‘P’ ‘Flash on’. I find whenever I use ‘Auto’ or any other functions the pics just look crap and my iPhone usually does a better job- honestly it does! I really need to read the instruction manual for my G12.
Question from Nat Kaz: Hi Bec, my baby daughter is 6 months old & just under 6kg. I’m looking to upgrade from baby capsule to a car seat. Are you happy with the Maxi cosi Euro? Is it easy to use and get bub in and out of it? Thanks
Answer: Hi Nat. The Maxi Cosi Euro is fantastic. Oscar is in his and I’m just about to pop Billie into hers too. The best bit (apart from it’s contemporary good looks) is the ‘Cool Baby’ Wicking Fabric which is made from Bamboo and helps keep those sweaty, over heating episodes at bay. I love it. Oscar’s fave is the red but I love the Navy Blue.
Question from Ivana Vukcevik: Hey Bec, I really just wanted to know where you get your hair done and also what you ask for. I have gone into a salon previously with an idea in mind for something very similar to yours however it seems impossible. I have hair naturally the same as your and just really wanted to find out what colors your stylist puts in there? Thank you, and just a side note, you’re brilliant.
Answer: I go to Uva Salon here. I see Marie and she usually just does whatever she feels like haha. Marie has a really good eye and knows what tones suit you. She said so many people will go in and ask for my hair colour but they might have a different skin tone, eye colour etc to me so the colour won’t look the same. Marie’s great at advising you on what will look the most amazing on YOU.
Updated with winners: Teisa Holani, Alex 43, BC Young, Vanessa Vrljic. Congrats- we have emailed you.
With a shift towards wanting to put natural products on and in our bodies, I am pleased to introduce a new tan which eliminates many of the nasties that other self tanners contain, Xen-Tan.
Xen-Tan Premium Sunless Tan is dedicated to the science of self-tan and delivers the most advanced technology and innovative ingredients such as odour erasers and time-release complex. The products feel and smell like luxury body lotions with none of the chemical smell so many people associate with self-tan (you know what I mean when I say you can smell a fake tan coming through the door before you see it- rank). Each product delivers beautiful olive tones and are specially formulated to be safe on the face and body and contain oil free and paraben free formulas (yahoo!). Xen-Tan is the highest quality of sunless tan products that nourish the skin, smell delicious, and give a beautiful natural self-tan.
I know what I’ll be tanning with this Spring/Summer!
To celebrate the launch of Xen-Tan I’m giving away 4 Bronze Bombshell kits here today which each contain:
To enter, tell me your craziest ‘fake tan’ story below. The people I feel ‘need’ this fab product the most will win haha. I will announce the winners in this post on July 11th and winners will be contacted by the Xen-Tan team to organise delivery of your fabulous products!
I’ve had a gazillion ‘Ask Bec’ questions relating to Billie’s routine and how she is going with her sleep/feeding schedules so I thought it was about time I got my ass into gear and answered your questions.
I am a routine mum through and through. I’m a strong believer that babies will begin to sleep through the night sooner if they are on a routine (but some babies just do it naturally on their own from very early on- how lucky for their mumma!). Humans in general, I believe, thrive on routine. I for one take great comfort in knowing not only how my days are planned out, but also my weeks. I also love the routine of my year- it allows me to plan and look forward to things. For example, every single morning, I know I wake up at 7am and so do my kids. We come downstairs, put the coffee machine on. I change Billie and Oscar’s nappies, and then get Oscar a glass of warm milk and he starts playing with his trucks or watches Peppa pig on ABC 2. By the time I’ve organised Billie’s bottle, the coffee machine has heated up and I’ll make myself a strong latte and sip it as I feed her. I’ll then play with the kids before Billie has her morning sleep. I LOVE our morning routine and so do the kids- it’s nothing fancy but it’s just what we do.
I am flexible with my routines, meaning that if I have a day which completely throws everything into a spin, that is ok, and then usually I’ll be back onto our routine the day after this. I find if I’m a bit too crazy with work or if I’m away and so is my husband, then the routines go out the window and what do you know? My kids start waking earlier or not going to sleep at their usual times, they are harder to settle and not as content. They seem to crave routine and so do I.
Routines aren’t for everyone and you need to decide what suits your family and lifestyle. For my family, I need a routine as I am busy and work 3 permanent days a week with Ch 9, not to mention all the other ambassador work I do and this blog. My husband is a professional athlete and works 6 days a week. Both of our jobs require us to be well rested (i.e. well slept) in order for us to be able to perform at an optimal level- so does being a parent. Similarly, when I am at work and have someone looking after my children, the fact my children have a routine makes it easier for me to leave them, easier for the carer to look after them, and my children are happy to be cared for knowing they are doing ‘their usual thing.’
My first piece of advice for those wanting to implement a routine is to buy a notebook so you can write down what is happening throughout your child’s day, like when they wake, feed and sleep. This will allow you to keep check of where you are up to with your day. In those first few weeks you can be so tired and overwhelmed that I remember often forgetting when bub woke, what breast she fed from, how many sleeps she’d had for the day etc. I didn’t really know what the hell was going on- it was all a haze. When you can write down your baby’s activities it provides a guide as to what is to come next and allows you to problem solve why they may be grizzly or upset by looking back at when their last feed was (are they hungry?), when their last sleep was (are they tired or even overtired?) when their last number two was (are they constipated?) and why they won’t settle at night (have they slept too much during the day?).
Oscar started sleeping through the night (7pm-7am) at 12 weeks, Billie started sleeping through at 6 weeks (with a dreamfeed). The difference was that I started Oscar on a routine when he was 6 weeks old and it took 6 weeks to ‘kick in.’ With Billie, I started her routine as soon as she was born and she first slept through the night at 4 weeks but consistently, every night from 6 weeks.
I cannot stress how important it is to be able to detect sleep signs. If you miss the boat with these (like we did with Oscar for so many weeks), it makes it so much harder for your baby to fall asleep as they are overtired. I remember having Oscar up for 4 hours at a time as a 5 week old- what tha?! He just didn’t seem tired at all with those big, wide eyes but it turned out he was all stare-bear and bug eyed because he was so bloody tired- whoops! Hello, as a first time parent how are you supposed to know these things? Tired signs include yawning, staring into space, getting red around the eyes and irritability. I am so good at spotting the tired signs now and using my routine to tell me when Billie is due for a sleep that I always put her to bed awake and she’ll usually yell out for about 5 seconds before she karks it- it is gold!
So here are Billie’s routines:
NEWBORNS- Ok so newborns are so bloody hard to put on a routine and perhaps even impossible. I don’t even know if I should use the word ‘newborn’ and ‘routine’ in the same sentence! Sometimes they are just so darn sleepy that they won’t take a proper feed despite you doing everything to try and wake them! I read some books about what to do in the newborn phase but they just stressed me out because both of my kids wouldn’t stay awake for the required time nor feed for the required time. They both liked to ‘suck and snooze’ which was so frustrating because I was always anxious that they weren’t feeding enough as they were always bloody sleeping (largely because of what the books were saying to do)! As a general rule, if you can get them on a basic routine you are setting them up to be able to transition into a more structured one once they become more alert and can sustain longer awake times.
My general rules for newborns-
* Feed every 3 to 4 hours. Wake them if they are still sleeping (which is most of the time), even overnight. The aim is to encourage your baby to gain as much weight as possible so they are big enough to sustain longer periods of sleep overnight.
* Always swaddle tightly
* During the days I’d just go with the flow with bub’s timings based on the first point above but every night was the same bed time routine (so they’d be able to tell the difference between day and night- ie. night is for SLEEPING!)
- 7pm BED
- 10pm Wake up and bath, then bottle (I’d breastfeed during the day and my husband would bath and give a bottle of formula at this time so I could get some rest). You can bath at 7pm but in this early stage it was something that my husband would do for both of my babies at this time. We move the bath to 6:30pm at 4 weeks.
- 2am Set alarm and wake baby for a bottle/breastfeed
- Between 6am and 7am wake up (I wouldn’t let Billie sleep past 7am. If she woke before 6am I’d give her a small feed and then a larger one at 7am to start her day on time)
FROM 4 WEEKS- Billie started fussing when we’d try and put her to sleep at 7pm and would want to stay awake for hours. She was far more alert and so we knew it was time to move her bath to 6:30pm so she could be in bed by 7pm. We also knew that it was now time to give her more awake time during the day. Quite simply, she was sleeping too much during the day for her older age now, that she had all of this energy at night time when she was supposed to go to sleep. So we began our journey of trying to keep Billie awake after her day feeds- what a mission! It was hard stretching her out but we’d manage to keep her awake for 1 hour to 1.5 hours (FEED, PLAY, SLEEP) and what do you know- by bed time at 7pm she was more than ready to go straight to sleep. We’d try and make sure she only had a combined day time sleep total of around 5 hours.
- 6-7am’ish feed (sleep 8-10am)
- 10-11am’ish feed (sleep 12-2pm)
- 2-3pm’ish feed (sleep 4-5pm)
- 6:30pm bath then feed
- 7pm BED
- 11pm wake and feed
- 3am set alarm, wake and feed (I forgot to set the alarm one night and she slept through until 6am- eep!)
- 6am-7am she would wake and we’d start our day again.
FROM 6 WEEKS- Billie had gained lots of weight and was now well over 5kgs which meant I could tinker with dropping the 3am feed. At first she would sometimes wake around 4:30am so I’d feed her (only a small amount though) and then wake her again around 7am to start the day. After a day or so, she’d start waking around 5am by yelling out but instead of getting her straight up, I’d leave her and see if she’d fall back asleep and she would- hallelujah! Of course if she was crying I would always go to her but she’d usually just stir, yell out and then fall back asleep. After a few nights of doing this she’d eventually start waking between 6am and 7am- YAY!
- 6-7am’ish feed (sleep 8-10am)
- 10-11am’ish feed (sleep 12-2pm)
- 2-3pm’ish feed (sleep 4-5pm)
- 6:30pm bath then feed
- 7pm BED
- 11pm wake and feed
- 6-7am she would wake and we’d start our day again
FROM 3 MONTHS- We dropped the dreamfeed around 3 months and made sure we upped her intake during the day to make up for it.
- 7am Awake and feed (sleep 8:30am)
- 11am feed (sleep 12:30)
- 3pm feed (nap for 40 mins)
- 6pm Bath
- 6:30pm Bottle
- 7pm BED
FROM 4 MONTHS- longer awake time during the day.
- 7am Awake and feed (sleep 9am)
- 11am feed (sleep 1pm)
- 3pm feed (4:30pm nap for 20 mins)
- 6pm Bath
- 6:30pm Bottle
- 7pm BED
Remember- every baby is different and this is just a rough guide of what I do based on professional advice I sought when Oscar was 6 weeks old. If you have a baby who struggles to sleep and it’s causing much grief to you/your family/ your baby, then I would consider seeking professional advice. I am also a HUGE advocate of getting whatever help you can. It is not a sign of weakness or defeat to ask for help. Babies are bloody hard and they do say, “it takes a village” to raise one. In this day and age we put so much pressure on ourselves to be able to do it all with no help at all. Well that’s fine if you’re Wonder Woman but if you need help or a bit of professional guidance (like a lot of us) then book a Night Nanny (with qualifications such as midwifery or mothercraft nurses) or a sleep school.
Here is a list of some of my top resources for people/services who can help with getting your baby to sleep and who I have called on for help in the past to get my routines in order.
Cath Curtin (midwife and sleep specialist) here
Tahna Leader (maternity nanny who stays at your house and shows you how to put your baby into a routine. She got triplets sleeping through the night at 6 weeks- yep, all 3 of them in the same room. She is a genius this lady!) here
Gabrielle from Sleep Rescue here
Tweddle (sleep school) here
Mitcham private sleep centre here
Queen Elizabeth Centre here
Caroline’s Angels here
WINNER ANNOUNCED- Emma Pike! Well done. We’ll be in contact.
Yeeha- one of my favourite artists, Prudence Caroline has launched her next series of limited edition works on paper. All hand signed and numbered by Pru and printed on heavy, thick archival paper. The exquisite detail of the canvas remains in this limited reproduction.
Don’t the styled images just look fab? They definitely show the audience how to master it in your own home.
I’m giving away one of these stunning prints. To enter, just tell me in the comments section below which one you like and how you’ll style it in your own home. The winner will receive their chosen print in the 800 x 800 size (framing not included). Winner announced July 5th.
To purchase, head to email@example.com
800 x 800 $640
1.1 x 1.1 $760
Top to Bottom:
006 – “Mauve Your Ass”
007 – “Neon Farm”
O05 – “Point Of the Joke”
Images: Armelle Habib, Styling: Society of Wanderers
Being pregnant with my son, Oscar, in 2011 was a huge turning point for me in the way I started to analyse every single thing I put in my body (passive or active) whether that be food, drinks, cosmetics, fumes, clothes etc. I also started to really think about the environmental impact my lifestyle was having. It’s amazing the effect a growing child in your belly can have on the consideration of your responsibilities not only to your unborn baby, but to yourself (after all, you want to live a long life right and watch your children grow?) and the environment (you also want a nice, healthy planet for your children and grandchildren to grow up on which will offer them the same lifestyle and opportunities you had). All of a sudden my entire outlook had changed and I began to favour ‘organic’ everything and would scour ‘ingredients’ lists on products for any chemical nasties, preservatives, artificial colours, flavours, fragrances, bio-degradable abilities, recycling potential etc. Aha! I had become a hippie. Well not quite but it certainly made me look back on the majority of my 20′s and shudder at the thought of all the crap I used to put into my body. For starters, I worked at a pizza shop- the more processed meat on my cheesy crust pizza the better! Oh and my sister worked at one of the big name take-away chicken stores (I won’t say which) and we would often eat left over, hormone pumped chicken pieces for snacks after school every day. After all, we had buckets full of the stuff in the fridge- urgh! I would also bathe myself in perfume and deodorant and layer on those thick foundation sticks full of the nastiest chemicals and heavy metals. Now I use organic or natural products whenever I can whether it be Tom Organic’s range, Ren shampoo and conditioner, Musq cosmetics and of course I favour whole foods and am happy to say I have not eaten a slice/piece of the aforementioned pizza/chicken since my sister and I stopped working there.
So let me introduce Aimee Marks- founder of TOM Organic, famous for their organic female personal care products. Aimee is super young, super successful, pregnant with twins and lives with an extremely healthy outlook on life. She has some great information and advice to offer on why she started TOM Organic, why organic is important, how you can live a healthier life, some awesome tips for those women wanting to start their own business and also discusses TOM Organic’s current products and their exciting new maternity range. It’s a great read from a very inspiring young lady.
You were only 18 when you came up with the idea for TOM Organic. What got you thinking about organic tampons? It started out like any business idea, solving a problem. I was tired of my tampons falling out in my handbag all the time and I wanted to redesign conventional packaging, but as soon as I read the ingredients list, the focus quickly turned to what was inside the box. When you ask the question ‘What’s in your tampon?’ Most women actually don’t know the answer – understandably, we just assume because a tampon is white and fluffy that it is made of cotton which is often not the case. We’re talking about a product that goes into one of the most absorbent parts of our body and we use up to 12,000 of them in our lifetime! I knew that I had to create an alternative and began challenging the long ingredients list on the back of conventional packs. I felt a responsibility to do so, not just for myself but for women everywhere, and making our tampons from organic cotton meant there was no compromising on our health or the planet.
Why is organic important to you? TOM was actually a trigger point for me turning to organic. I’ve always had a healthy outlook on life, and was very active growing up but establishing TOM really got me thinking differently – from both a business impact and health perspective. It can be quite confronting to discover what’s actually in your tampon, whether you’re into organics or not – it’s not one of those products that you really spend too much time thinking about, so for me, it led to a whole new outlook on what I was putting into my body, not just the food I eat, but the skincare and cleaning products I use – I went through a process of second guessing the big brands I had trusted for years. I believe that our bodies can only consume so many chemicals and every choice we make to reduce that load can only be a positive thing. To me, organic tampons and pads just make sense.
How do your products differ to the others currently on the market – why is this an important product for women – aren’t all tampons made from cotton? The majority of conventional products on the market are made with synthetic fibres like rayon, polypropylene (plastic) and conventional cotton which is one of the most heavily sprayed and genetically modified crops in the world, exposed to over 25% of the worlds total insecticides. Women are using these products in the most sensitive region of their bodies, without being fully educated about what they are actually made from. TOM Organic tampons and pads are made from the purest organic cotton, making them gentle on the skin, hypoallergenic and perfume free. Our organic tampons are biodegradable which means we are keeping landfill cleaner for future generations. Unless a tampon is made from pure certified organic cotton it is not guaranteed to be chemicals free (look out for the ACO Australian Certified Organic logo on the pack). TOM Organic is the only certified organic female hygiene brand available on Australian supermarket shelves.
I’m excited to hear you have just launched a maternity range (maternity pads and nursing pads). At a time when women may be feeling their least glamorous tell me about the inspiration behind this range and how these products can help support women post-birth? What began as a journey to create organic feminine hygiene has evolved into a vision to support and nourish women at significant stages of life (first periods, first babies). So developing a maternity range felt like a natural step for us. Motherhood is often a turning point for women to switch to organic products for their babies, becoming more mindful of the chemicals you put on babies - we therefore think that it’s equally important for new mothers to have the purest imaginable choices too for their own bodies.
And I hear you’re about to become a mum yourself – of twins! How do you keep balanced, preparing for this exciting time while managing a successful business? I feel like I should be asking women like yourself advice on this one, given you have been a role model to many women running a business and raising two small children. I think firstly it helps to be running a business and working in an industry that aligns with my values and healthy lifestyle. We have daily reminders in the office to remain present, mindful and healthy (with regular deliveries of organic juices, yummy snacks and office yoga classes). Everyone tells you to enjoy and embrace the magical moments along the pregnancy journey, it’s easy to get caught up in the busyness of life but I have put some healthy reminders in my schedule to encourage me to embrace this amazing time – like exercise, flowers on my desk in the office, taking time to work from home, early morning walks, surrounding myself with inspiring people. It’s the simple things that work best for me – the babies definitely thank me for it, a nap or massage always gets them moving lots!
What has been your proudest moment? Getting the call from Woolworths to say our range had finally been accepted was a pretty exciting day. They knocked me back multiple times before finally saying yes, and everyone told me I wouldn’t get a second chance to meet with them. Together with Coles, it is now one of our strongest and proudest retailer relationships. The reason this is such a proud moment for me is that I have peace of mind that every women in every corner of our country can access TOM Organic products in their local supermarket – I believe it’s the power of the small buying choices we make each week that contribute tocreating positive change and impact in our world.
Your products not only care for what’s on the inside of our bodies but also what’s on the outside – understanding and only using certified organic products to reduce the use of chemicals on the planet. What are the top three things you do in your daily routine that also has the planet in mind? I use organic skincare wherever possible – from a manufacturing perspective (I love Jacqueline Evan’s range), this keeps chemicals out of our world and ultimately our bodies. Pre-pregnancy I was riding my bike to work as I live locally. I buy local seasonal and organic fruit and vegetables wherever possible (but ultimately it’s all about balance). It’s important to know where our food is coming from and that it’s contributing to sustainability.
What is your advice to young women who wish to start their own business? Never give up on something you are deeply passionate about. A lot of people ask me how to start a business and my answer is to just start. Do anything that makes your idea feel remotely real, have a conversation, build a model, do anything that makes it feel more tangible, and don’t let others drown out your inner voice. Ultimately, you need to have the courage to follow your intuition.
What are the most important lessons you’ve learnt along the way?
1. Write your story and not a business plan. Ultimately passion drives innovation and will be the driver behind your success.
2. Never compromise on your own values, put processes in place to ensure this is engrained into the DNA of your business – which is why TOM Organic is a certified Benefit Corporation – a voluntary audit process of our entire business which challenges you to compete ethically and collectively with other businesses to be the best for the world not in the world.
3. Relationships and people are everything in business. Surround yourself with people that inspire and challenge you. It’s sometimes surprising that the ‘no’ people that bring out the best in you (so long as they have the business’ best interests at heart).
5. Attach meaning to everything you do – this is how I maintain my sense of wonder and magic in business – knowing we are building a lifestyle brand that is contributing positively to women’s lives and our planet is the ultimate reward for all of the hard work.
TOM Organic is ranged in Coles, Woolworths and selected health food stores and pharmacies. Discover more and buy online at tomorganic.com.au as a special gift for RJL readers enter ‘beclovestom’ at our online store check-out to receive a complimentary organic cotton tote with your order.
Join the TOM community: @tomorganic
A couple of months ago I let the cat out of the bag on a new project I’ve been working on, Beauty EDU. Beauty EDU is an independent beauty school set to shake up the industry by offering hands on training taught by the absolute best in the business.
We’ve been hard at work behind the scenes, and today I’m excited to announce our Short Course and Masterclass Series, developed in collaboration with boutique creative agency Hart & Co and a selection of Australia’s top freelance makeup artists. This group is collectively known as the Beauty Faculty, and you can find out more about them here.
Attendees will learn from some of the most sought after beauty professionals in the country, all of whom have worked at the pinnacle of the world’s editorial, runway, film and music industries. The series consists of a broad selection of classes designed to benefit a wide range of beauty devotees, including how to create ‘Runway Ready’ makeup, ’The Smokey Eye, and ‘Tips & Tricks the Professionals Use’.
To kick things off, I’m hosting a panel discussion with three of Australia’s top makeup artists, all represented by Hart & Co: Belinda Zollo, Julie Provis and Christine Gaunt. These women have enjoyed huge success throughout their careers having graced the pages of French and Italian Vogue, Vanity Fair and Harpers Bazaar. And let’s not forget the long list of celebrities they call their clients (Eva Longoria, Miranda Kerr and Helena Christensen to name a few).
Attendees will hear about how they started their careers, the experience they’ve gained along the way and the journey toward establishing themselves as three of the most sought after makeup artists in the country. This is an amazing opportunity for all beauty-lovers (including myself!), particularly professional or aspiring makeup artists looking for some valuable advice on how to make it to the top.
The event will be held in the evening of June 26th in Melbourne, and spaces are strictly limited. Get in quick and secure your spot.
For booking information head to www.beautyedu.edu.au/courses-classes/upcoming-masterclasses/meet-the-artists
Hope to see you there – RJ x
Imagine only spending one day with your newborn baby. Give now at oneday.org.au
WINNER ANNOUNCED- Jasmine Davie well done!
One of my fave online interiors stores, Hunting for George, are giving Rebecca Judd Loves readers a chance to win something for their Bedroom, Bathroom, Kitchen and Living Room. Just choose your favorite product from the top 6 in each room from the images below.
Head over to the Hunting for George website to enter your selections, here: http://www.huntingforgeorge.com/rjl-competition
The competition is open until Sunday 29th June. A winner will be selected and notified on Monday 30th June. Max prize value is $536.95
If you just can’t wait until the competition ends to get your hands on something from Hunting for George, they are offering 20% off all orders for RJL shoppers from now until the 29th June. Just enter the discount code at checkout.
DISCOUNT CODE: RJLSHFG
Happy shopping and good luck for the comp!
Introducing Urban Couture, an exciting, new multi-faceted Australian concept – an innovative design platform, online boutique and creative showroom space all in one.
The brainchild of Interior Stylist, Katriarna Rodgers and her partner Thomas Towhidi, the concept was born when they identified the need for a simplified and personalized experience within the home furnishing market. This idea evolved into a true passion for the young, interior-obsessed duo, resulting in a truly unique offering: an online boutique, a free e-decorating service, an exciting new showroom, and an interactive DIY mood board platform inspiring design communities to create and share.
So what do the different facets involve?
- Shop: from an extensive range of hand selected, stylish products from some of the best brands around the globe including Scandinavian faves like Muuto, By Lassen, NUD Lighting and Design House Stockholm. Urban Couture also supports local brands like Penny Farthing Design House, Bondi Wash, Billy Heckenberg and Artwork from the talented Trevor King.
- Couture Board (ahhh this is GOLD): If you have trouble visualising all of your favourite interior items in one cohesive look then fear no more. The DIY mood board platform on the website named the “Couture Board”, allows users to curate their own simple and fun mood boards via the “drag and drop” action. On so many occasions I have fallen victim to purchasing interiors items, only to be annoyed when I’ve brought them home to realise that they just don’t look good together. Then I’m left with a doona cover that’s just wrong, cushions which are even worse and furniture that just doesn’t ‘go’. Yes, I have gotten so much better at this (experience peeps- oh and lots of wasted dollars) but it would have been so much easier if I’d had this Couture Board doovalacky in the beginning- gah! Users of the ‘Couture Board’ have the option of saving their mood boards for later use or posting it to social media platforms like Facebook or Pinterest to inspire others.
- Expert advice: Urban Couture’s co-founder, Katriarna, is always on hand (and online) to curate specific interior palettes and mood boards for clients via the complimentary (yes, complimentary!!!) e-decorating service.
- Showroom: Urban Couture has just opened an exciting new converted warehouse style showroom in Ultimo, Sydney, which can be visited by appointment. They have created a space for clients to come in and feel comfortable (without the intimidating and snobby atmosphere that you may find in some other showrooms) and the showroom also provides a place for clients to come in for a one on one design consultation, whilst enjoying a glass of wine (or a cup of tea/coffee!).
All images supplied by Insider Experience here
I’m thrilled to announce that I’m heading to New York as a lucky guest of Insider Experience. I cannot wait to tell you all about what I’m doing next May/June and to invite YOU to join me there. If you’ve been thinking of a New York holiday (because lets be honest, who hasn’t been?) then bring your girlfriends, your husband, your wife and join me there!
Forget the usual tourist traps, Insider Experience is a one-of-a-kind luxury travel consultancy. Offering insider experiences across the hottest spots of New York (and Los Angeles), guests indulge in exclusive 5-star itineraries that deliver unforgettable getaways across a 6 night itinerary.
This tour is the ultimate/bucket list getaway with your partner or friends and is nothing like the usual type of “tour”. It is a 5-star luxury experience staying at WestHouse Hotel in Mid-town, which includes an exciting selection of options for each day, but paramount in the offering is the total flexibility and freedom you have to customise your experience. There are group activities and exciting nightlife to enjoy together, but it is also understood that everyone is unique and may want to experience NY their own way. Inclusions are:
Dates: Friday 29 May – Thursday 4 June 2015
Price: USD$3990 per person for 6 nights (Twin Share)
Does this sound like you? Then head to www.insiderexperience.com/
Clockwise from top left
Clockwise from top left
You all know I love an affordable interiors find and H & M Melbourne is FULL of them. Providing fashion for every room of the house, H & M Home offers towels, bedding, curtains and other home textiles in on-trend colours and prints, as well as home décor items in glass, metal and wood. Those copper planter bags have my name on them and the velvet pillowcases are LUSH. The best part is the price. I don’t know how they do it but far out, talk about cheap as chips- literally. Go forth and shop ma’ ladies- lots of goodies to be found- woo!
My clever girlfriend has just launched her new season Holystone campaign and it’s a cracker! Using her trademark leather, the collection features rock n roll woven styles, cropped tops and awesome accessories. My fave piece of the collection would be the shaggy black, faux fur shrug which adds a bit of glam to any leather look. And of course, Holystone’s leather heels and booties are the best in the bizz and coveted by all! Shop the look at holystone.com.au
Photography: Jennifer Stenglein, Makeup: Chantelle Baker, Hair: Caitlin Wilson, Model: Isabelle Impala
Those of you who love designer fashion, brace yourselves, as MARAIS Australia is opening on Bourke St, Melbourne with a shopping experience never before seen in this country.
Imagined by F2 Architecture, BUILT, DCG and The Flaming Beacon, and described as a “temple to the art of fashion,” expect a welcome like no other as you are greeted by a 2 tonne, white quartz crystal chandelier at a whopping 6 metres high. Combine this with ‘magic mirror’ flooring, knights in shining armour, a drawbridge like hallway and VIP rooms comprising of seashell pink marble walls and drawers-Oh my!
Marais will house store-within-stores for CELINE, Givenchy, Balencia
Check it out at 73-77 Bourke St, Melbourne, this June, or online at marais.com.au
Photo- The West Australian here
Meet my gorgeous girlfriend, Rayne, and her loveable kids- Autumn, Lux and Van. Rayne is the publisher of her blog www.rayneembley.com.au of which I am a regular visitor. I was so taken by one of her recent articles on raising children, that I just had to repost it here on RJL. I am in total agreeance with Rayne and am sooooooooo over the ‘everybody gets a participation certificate’ mentality. We need to raise our children to be humble winners and gracious losers. We need to prepare them for the real world and the new protocols being enforced at schools and sporting clubs around the country is not doing this. Every parent and non-parent I speak to about these issues is in agreeance, so who on earth came up with these new ‘rules’ and does anybody back them in? Please let Rayne and I know your thoughts below. RJ x
“In a world where participation certificates are given out at every sporting event, where there is no scoring in most sports for under 13’s, where red pen and F’s have been banned at some schools for looking too aggressive and kids have continual instant gratification through the internet, iPads and social media- it has me wondering, have we taken things too far?
What are we really teaching our kids? Ok, so we have to give our kids self-esteem, we have to give them confidence but how do we do this without creating kids that feel entitled.
It starts from a very young age in the playground. Parents find it hard to give their kids space to roam and explore, to go up to groups of other kids and figure out for themselves how to get in on the fun. God forbid the other kids don’t want to play. Better make sure mum is right there in case your child gets rejected (insert sarcasm).
I’m not saying we shouldn’t be there for our kids and every parent finds it hard not to interject on their kid’s behalf, but what happened to simply letting our kids figure it out for themselves, not being there to save them at every possible moment where they might not get what they want and fall in a heap?
I’m not saying we should ignore our kids if they are sad or disappointed, I’m just saying that we should acknowledge our child’s feelings and then move right along. Don’t dwell, don’t blame other parties, don’t leave it to the teachers to sort out, just point our kids in a direction where they can try and figure out for themselves the next best thing to do.
Something I try to do with all of my kids from a very young age is to allow them to experience calculated risks. Let them take risks that are within reason, age appropriate and supervised. This could mean anything from letting them stand on the edge of the platform on the jungle gym and letting them peak over the edge. Let them see for themselves and make their own decision “what would happen if I took one more step here”. If we grab them down immediately how are they going to learn to assess risk for themselves?
Another game I play is the delayed gratification game. Lux, you can either have two marshmallows now OR if you wait, I will buy you an ice-cream after your swimming lesson. Ok, so junk food is not the best example but you get my drift.
Be there, but let them make a decision on their own. It’s our job to teach our kids how to make decisions and deal with the consequences after all we aren’t going to be in their pockets forever.
I don’t tell my kids they are amazing ALL of the time. I know Autumn’s capacity in the art world and if she scribbles some picture that has taken her no time at all, I’m not going to tell her how wonderful it is. I would sit with her and get her to explain to me what is going on in the picture. Noticing and giving attention to the effort is enough if not more flattering than passing something off as fabulous when you know it’s not their best work (bearing in mind their age and ability).
When my kids loose or get beaten in sport, board games or in general around the house I’m not going to race around looking for someone to shove a participation certificate in their face. I use it as an opportunity to see that they can’t win all of the time. Someone can be better on the day and it really doesn’t matter. You participate because you want to, not just because you will win or get a prize at the end.
I’m going to teach my kids that it’s good manners and sportsman like to go up and congratulate the other person. If you love it, then lets give it another go, if you really didn’t like participating then let’s go and do something else. Building character in our children by teaching them empathy for the other kids that didn’t win is gold. Once they know the feeling themselves won’t that make them empathetic towards other kids who didn’t quite get there either? It would be such a special feeling to see my children showing kindness to others in these situations.
It has been said that kids these days are lacking empathy. Empathy is the ability to recognize emotions being experienced by another human being. If all of the focus is on your child and their feelings (good or bad) they aren’t learning to respect and have consideration for others feelings.
The over use of praise has been said to have created a generation of self-obsessed, unmotivated kids. Kids only have to look in the right direction and someone is patting them in the back telling them how wonderful they are.
I am ALL for praise, don’t get me wrong but I am also for giving credit where credit is due. Listening to our kids and really being there for them is far more effective than giving them a trophy for achieving minor things. What is going to happen when they enter the work place? Are they going to expect a bonus every time a deal is done or a contract won? Life doesn’t work that way. They will be deflated and disappointed and struggle to be self-motivated to achieve if they aren’t constantly rewarded and praised if this is all that they know.
It’s probably one of the most important life skills we can acquire and as a parent, our job is to make sure we are helping and guiding our kids to deal with life’s ups and downs.
There are so many contributing factors which can make this important life skill or resilience hard to learn which is all the more reason we need to be fully aware of ways in which we can teach. Wrapping them in cotton wool and not giving them age appropriate tasks is not going to do them any good. Having kids too scared or unsure as to be confident in their own unguided decision’s is not prepping them for the real world.
Give your kids the room to make mistakes. Let them fail. Making mistakes and failing are not a direct reflection on their happiness and self-esteem. They are just temporary situations in which we give our children confidence and responsibility to make decisions, deal with consequence, be resilient, own their own lives and be self-motivated to achieve more.
Sharing, empathy, resilience, kindness, love, humility……. It is our job to teach and more importantly it is our job to model this behaviour.
After all, at the end of the day, the only person responsible for our happiness and actions is ourselves.
Let’s teach them how to own it.
Are there things you deliberately do to help teach your kids these emotions?
Please comment below. I would love to hear your feedback and ideas on how we can teach resilience.”
For more of Rayne’s blog- head to rayneembley.com.au
I’m so happy Crate Expectations has opened in my local area because not only am I crazy over all of the gorgeous brands stocked there, but because I feel excited for all of the lucky Bayside residents who have this interiors haven right on their doorstep- woohoo! Hampton St has come a long way and no longer do Baysiders have to venture out to Richmond or Armadale for their interiors hit. And for those of you who rent Bayside residents, the Malvern store is still as popular as ever and the online store is cranking!
From rugs, furniture and the most gorgeous homewares, Crate has ‘home living’ covered. Some of my fave suppliers include Twiggargerie, gorgeous original artwork from Ali McNabney Stevens, Lumiere Art and Co, HK Living items, Trudy Cook Designs, Middle of Nowehere, Ziporah towels, Kaz, Kip and Co plus HEAPS more.
Pop into 313 Hampton St, Hampton and check out the new range or jump online to shop at crateexpectations.com.au
Our Beauty EDU Logies makeup video with myself and Blanka Dudas was soooooo popular that we thought we’d dedicate a video specifically to the smokey eye part of the look. If you’d like to book a masterclass with Blanka Dudas at Beauty Edu then register your interest at beautyedu.edu.au
A selection of items available from Stylematch here
Updated with winner: miss_molly_holly for your VB dress. We loved the outfit and yes it would be perfect for the polo!
I’m very excited to exclusively launch STYLEMATCH- a new interactive fashion marketplace which is both a beautifully designed, easy-to-shop website – with some 70,000+ items from some of the best fashion retailers and brands in the world – and a fully integrated, interactive fashion styling and shopping app which, among many other fabulous features, has the world’s first mobile fashion Virtual Change Room, so users can effectively try-before-they-buy.
Aiming to become the world’s biggest fashion community, Stylematch offers a fab range of International and Australian retailers from one easy to shop location including ASOS, Topshop, Topman, Farfetch, Shoptiques, Lane Crawford, Forever 21, Portmans, Saba, Sportscraft, Styletread, Hobbs, Oasis, Warehouse and many more. Labels include some of my absolute faves, from Alexander McQueen to Adidas, Chloe to Club Monaco, Jil Sander to J Brand, Saint Laurent to sass & bide, Zac Posen to Zadig & Voltaire – and everything in between (did somebody say Giuseppe Zanotti?!).
The App is what really makes Stylematch unique and allows you to take your own wardrobe at home with you, everywhere you go. ‘How’, you may ask?
Digitise your own clothes and accessories so you never go shopping again without having your personal wardrobe in your pocket.
Try-before-you-buy: The Virtual Change Room uses augmented reality (yep!) technology to let you view a real-time image of yourself overlayed with items from the online store. If you like the look, you can buy it. You can even use it when shopping in a bricks and mortar retailer to help you visualise whether what you are trying on will work with something stored in your digitised wardrobe.
Create outfits by mixing and matching what’s in your closet with anything you like in the online store.
Shop thousands of gorgeous fashion brands from all over the world in one beautiful and convenient location
The App is available to download on the iTunes store – search ‘Stylematch’ or head to www.stylematch.com.au
REBECCA JUDD LOVES/STYLEMATCH COMPETITION
WIN A $500 STYLEMATCH SHOPPING SPREE!
HOW TO ENTER:
Download the Stylematch App from the iTunes App Store
Register with your personal details (this is necessary so we have a valid email address through which to contact you should you be selected as the competition winner)
Create an outfit from items you love imported from the Stylematch shop (no purchase necessary)
Once the outfit is created and saved – you must share it to Instagram – including the following tags #stylematchfashion (which is prepopulated from the App) and #rebeccajuddloves
In 25 words or less, tell us why you love your outfit
TERMS & CONDITIONS
1. Entry is open to residents of Australia, aged 18 years and over. Employees & the immediate families of the Promoter and Stylematch and any of their agencies or affiliates, are ineligible to enter.
2. There is no purchase or payment of any kind necessary to enter. A purchase or payment will not increase your chances of winning.
3. This is an online competition and as such it is necessary for you to have access to the internet and to have an active email address.
4. To enter you will need to download the Stylematch App from the iTunes App Store to your iPhone.
5. The competition commences on May 14 2014 at 9am hours AEST and closes on May 21 at 9am hours AEST.
6. It is possible to enter the competition more than once, but be advised that you cannot win more than one prize by making multiple submissions. By submitting your entry, you warrant that your entry is an original work, belongs to you and has not been adapted or copied from others, and does not violate the rights of any other person or entity.
7. One winner will be chosen as having, in the opinion of the judges, to have provided the best outfit and explanation in the competition.
8. The outfit MUST contain at least one item sourced from the Stylematch ‘SHOP’ (via App), otherwise the entry will be ineligible.
9. The entries will be judged by Rebecca Judd and a Director of Stylematch Pty Ltd.
10. The judges’ decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into.
11. The prize consists of one shopping spree on the Stylematch website to the value of AUD $500. If the winner selects product to a value lower than the prize value the cash differential will not be provided. If the winner selects product to a value higher than the prize value, the winner must pay the balance owing.
12. The prize only includes what is expressly stated to be part of the prize and is not transferable. No cash alternative is available.
13. The total prize pool is valued at up to AUD $500.
14. The Winner will be notified by email within 24 hours of the judges’ decision. The name of the winner will be published on May 22nd 2014in the original post. The Winner will then have 14 days to respond to the email and confirm their eligibility in order to claim their prize.
15. If the Winner is un-contactable, unresponsive or unable to accept the prize for any reason, a second chance winner will be selected by the judges and will be notified by email within 48 hours and will have until June 5th date 2014 to claim their prize.
16. You are responsible for providing the Stylematch with accurate and up-to-date contact details. Stylematch will not be liable for any failure, delay or inability to contact you. In some circumstances you will need to provide a valid delivery address in order to receive your prize.
17. If you have not replied within the stated period, or you don’t meet the eligibility requirements aforementioned, the Promoter reserves the right to withdraw a potential prize.
18. All entries become the property of Stylematch. By entering this competition you give your consent (without further compensation or attribution) for Stylematch and any others authorised by Stylematch to use, reproduce, modify, print, publish, distribute, sell, and display your entry for any purpose.
19. By entering and/or accepting the prize, Entrants and Winner agree to hold the Promoter and its promotional partners, directors, officers, and employees harmless for liability, damages, or claims for injury or loss to any person or property, relating to, in whole or in part, directly or indirectly, participation in this Competition, the acceptance and/or subsequent use or misuse of any of the prize, or claims based on publicity rights, defamation, or invasion of privacy. False or deceptive entries or acts will render the Entrant ineligible.
20. The Promoter, at its sole discretion, reserves the immediate and unrestricted right to disqualify any Entrant or prize Winner if either commits or has committed any act or has been involved or becomes involved in any situation or occurrence which the Promoter deems likely to subject RebeccaJuddLoves, Stylematch, Entrant, or Winner to ridicule, scandal, or contempt or which reflects unfavourably upon the Promoter in any way. If the Promoter discovers such information after a Winner has received notice of his/her prize and before the prize is awarded, the Promoter may rescind the prize in its entirety. Decisions of the Promoter are final and binding in all matters related to this paragraph, subject to regulatory approval.
21. RebeccaJuddLoves and Stylematch are not responsible for lost or late entries nor for electronic transmission errors resulting in omission, interruption, deletion, defect, delay in operations or transmission, theft or destruction or unauthorized access to or alterations of entry materials, or for technical, network, electronic, computer, hardware, or software malfunctions or limitations of any kind, or inaccurate transmissions of or failure to receive entry information by Stylematch on account of technical problems or traffic congestion on the Internet or at any website or any combination thereof.
22. If for any reason the Competition is not capable of completion or running as planned, including infection by computer virus, bugs, tampering, unauthorized intervention, fraud, technical failures, or any other causes that corrupt or affect the administration, security, fairness, integrity, or proper conduct of the Competition, the Promoter reserves the right in its sole discretion to disqualify any individual who tampers with the entry process and/or to cancel, terminate, modify, or suspend the Competition subject to regulatory approval.
23. The Promoter reserves the right to select the winner from eligible entries received as of the termination date. If there is a dispute as to the identity of the Entrant declared the Winner, the prize will be awarded to the authorized account holder of the e-mail address. The “authorized account holder” is defined as the natural person to whom the email address is assigned.
24. Rebecca Judd Loves in the competition ‘promoter’ ABN- 67 870 880 790
The gorgeous, Ali McNabney Stevens, has produced her latest limited edition print series inspired by her most popular recent original artworks. Some of the available prints (shown below) are featured in the beautiful in-situ shots above, captured by Armelle Habib and styled by Julia Green. Isn’t it great seeing the pieces ‘in action’ and getting some tips on how you might style your piece in your own home?
I am the proud owner of an Ali original which will be revealed soon on The Style School, and adore her use of bold colour in a variety of graphic representations.
Printed on beautiful 300gsm archival paper, each print is available in four sizes. There is a strictly limited print run of 50 per size, per design. Available Image Sizes: – 20 x 20cm – 50 x 50cm – 75 x 75cm – 95 x 95cm.
For sales enquiries please contact Julia Green- www.greenhouseinteriors.com.au
All images Armelle Habib
Bianca Buccheri is the woman behind her shoe label of the same name and the owner of luxury shoe salon, Dolci Firme. Her winter collection is so chic and I am claiming her Irina Point Boots (here) to be THE shoe of the season. I was lucky enough to catch up with Bianca and ask all about her career to date and the evolution of her brand.
- Tell me how you got into designing shoes
I started working in the fashion industry at the age of 15 and I come from an Italian background. After university I lived in Florence Italy and I studied fashion design. I got back to Melbourne and felt there was a gap missing in the market for shoe stores that were not high end designer but a store with shoes of very high quality without the designer price tag.
- What is your style?
I take inspiration from the streets of Milan and Paris; polished, feminine, sleek, modern….
- Tell me about some of the people/retailers you have designed for and what the process entails?
I have assisted in the styling, development and production of footwear for designers such as Scanlan Theodore, Husk, Life With Bird and Skin & Threads under their own brands.
Process normally entails an initial sketch or an idea that then requires my interpretation for detailed development in giving the client the best quality shoe to sell for their own brand. I then work with the factories in Italy to have them sampled, properly fitted and then ready for final production.
- Tell me about some of your most popular styles
Pointy toe stiletto pump- it’s been on repeat since we started pushing the point in 1999.
Wedges- we have found the perfect combination of comfort and femininity over the last 5 years
Flat sandals and ballet flats- staple items that we are renowned for producing that are “different” to what is on the market
Boots- especially vintage boots in soft leathers utilizing a traditional Italian technique of machine washing our soft hand dyed leathers
- Any interesting stories about people who’ve worn your shoes?
Linda Evangelista and Helena Christensen wore my Bianca Buccheri shoes for Melbourne Fashion week back in 1998. That was exciting! Bianca Buccheri has been worn by many local Australian actors and singers however in stores we have served many local and international celebrities in Dolci Firme……ranging from Usher, Enimem, Kylie Minogue, Danni, Princess Mary, Delta Goodrem to Serena Williams, Jo Stanley and Kat Stewart.
We have sold shoes to women that want to get back at their husbands and we have also had some women buy their “first” pair of expensive shoes/boots to impress potential new “love”…..
- Tell me about the evolution of your brand to where it is today and where you want to take it in the future
I started the Bianca Buccheri shoe collections in 1996. We sold them through local boutiques such as Bettina Liano and Allannah Hill. We have since pushed the brand in Dolci Firme and it has now become our house label. It is exclusive to Dolci Firme thus giving the customers the assurance of not seeing it everywhere. The Bianca Buccheri style doesn’t change much and there is now a large following as women have grown to love the style and quality.
A diffusion label “By Bianca” is a new project which I am working on….. High quality shoes using all my Italian components and leathers but assembled in China for a more affordable price point. These will be priced between $150- $250
- I love the interiors in your new store. What was your inspiration and who designed it
Melissa from Mill Interiors designed the concept. We had in mind a women’s boudoir or walk in robe that would emulate their own feminine space…… A personal experience. We love the different elements of copper and bronze. We will keep to this aesthetic with the future stores.
- How do you juggle running your own business and motherhood
It is very challenging! I have my moments especially when I need to travel but slowly the kids understand that work is important and it’s also what I love.
Booking a family holiday in the Melbourne winter is a “must” for me……dinner with friends and “me” time is what helps find a happy balance. But yes, its pretty crazy and hectic with 3 kids!
Keep an eye out in MYER Melbourne for a new Dolci Firme concept store in August. For more info on Bianca Buccheri and Dolci Firme, head to www.dolcifirme.com.au
I had a ball designing my capsule collection for King’s of casual chic dressing, Skin and Threads. My range plays with my nickname ‘The Twig’ in a variety of rocker texts in both t-shirt and long sleeved styles. Biker cuts, metallic hints, denim and a cute bow print bring this collection together and I can see these pieces being worn as part of every cool chickie’s weekend wardrobe.
My fave pieces are the Chambray shirt- it is seriously so versatile and perfect to team with denim, leather pants, a mini skirt or shorts. Love it! I am also crazy for the cream motorcross pullover with ribbed, gold flecked accents. Oh and the skinny leg jean is the PERFECT skinny jean. It stays tight all the way to the ankle all day, and is long enough for lanky legged lasses but not too long for the shorties either.
I am officially launching my range this Saturday at 12 noon at the Skin and Threads boutique at Chadstone Shopping Centre (map here). I hope to see you all there. If you can’t get into store then shop the look here
Hi Guys, the Logies is over and done with for another year and I had a blast. A huge thank you to my best boys, Jacob and Anthony at J’Aton Couture, for designing me an incredible dress. The Boys always go above and beyond for me and ensure I’m always wearing something ahead of the game in a style that hasn’t been seen before. They are truly the best and inimitable (although lots of people have a fair crack). Anthony said he based the dress on a painting I had commissioned for my daughter’s nursery (all will be revealed on The Style School very soon!)- it’s all lilac, preppy goodness!
Paul Bram supplied my bling and custom made the gorgeous earrings for me. I wore my shoes from last year’s Logies (Rene Caovilla from Miss Louise) and my trusty Chanel silver clutch.
Blanka Dudas from Hart and Co did my smoky eye make up and Tielle from Uva Salon did my relaxed pony hair style.
I hope you enjoy the photos from my fittings and behind the scenes getting ready. Here is my contact list:
J’Aton Couture here
Blanka Dudas here
Uva Salon here
Paul Bram Diamonds here
Miss Louise here
Congrats to our winners:
- Erin Marie
- Tayla Strawberry
- Michelle Scrase
Melbourne based online gift store, The It Kit, are launching their 2014 Mother’s Day Collection, designed to spoil and pamper mothers everywhere.
The It Kit’s Mother’s Day Collection includes six gorgeous individual products and six carefully created ready made kits, including the ‘Life’s Luxuries Kit’, ‘Time for Tea Kit’, ‘Winter Chic Kit’, ‘Relax and Pamper Kit’, ‘Entertainer’s Kit’ and ‘Jacqueline Evans Skincare Kit’.
The It Kit’s fabulous selection of ready-made Mother’s Day kits makes this Mother’s Day a breeze, but you know your mother better than anyone, so The It Kit also offer you the flexibility of creating your very own tailored It Kit on the ’Create Your Own Kit’ section of their website.
Now for the best bit…. The It Kit are giving away 4 of the ‘Life’s Luxuries’ kits (top picture) to some lucky RJL readers (valued at $120 each!). All you have to do is answer the question below in the comments section. Winner will be announced in this post on May 5th and will be notified by The It Kit team to arrange delivery of your gorgeous prizes.
Question: What are three things that you love more than anything about your mother and tell us why you think she deserves a fabulous ‘Life’s Luxuries Kit’ from The It Kit?
Lastly, as a special to RJL readers, The It Kit are offering 10% off everything online until Mother’s Day. The code is: RJL-ITKIT and it needs to be entered in the discount box on the checkout page.
Head to www.theitkit.com.au to take advantage of this discount and spoil your mum this Mother’s Day.
The full midi skirt is definitely the silhouette of the season and I just love the femininity of it- so pretttttttttty! Toni Maticevski has recently nailed this look in his latest collection. For those who don’t have a Maticevski budget, I have tracked down the four styles above starting from $38!
Top L-R, Bottom L-R.
Me in the Weekender Cardi here
Portmans AW 14 collection has a huge focus on knits which are modelled beautifully by the ever so chic, Jess Hart, in the ‘Sugar Coated’ collection (campaign images below). From cropped knits and coatigans, to yummy fluffy yarns and heavier knitted jackets, Portmans has winter covered.
Pair your cropped knit with a white shirt underneath and a slick leather pencil skirt or shorts for a preppy look. Use sugar coated, pastel knits to add a feminine touch to your winter wardrobe, or for a harder edge, go for a knit with leather like trims and zips (speaking of leathers- look out for their gorgeous and affordable leathers too. The navy Biker jacket here is a killer! Wear it with the Moto mid rise skinny jeans in grey here).
I was lucky enough to interview Aussie Supermodel and face of Portmans, Jess Hart, and ask her all about winter dressing, beauty essentials and what she loves to do in her hometown of Melbourne!
What are your tips on dressing for Winter: I always love layering using different colours for layering. Given the New York winter, I always make sure I can take a layer off ie. wear a nice, light, long sleeve top underneath and a big overcoat and scarf.
Wardrobe staples for Winter: Knits are great. I’m really loving a chunky turtle neck in a pastel shade. A good flat boot and a leather pant.
Fav fashion moment: When I was flown to Paris to be fitted by Azzedine Alaia for the MET ball last year! That was amazing.
Fashion style icon: I don’t really have a favourite style icon as such… I admire anyone that thinks outside the box and takes risk with their outfits/fashion sense!
Routine for travelling from one season to the next: I always wear SPF no matter what time of the year or the weather I’m in! A heavier moisturiser for the plane is essential and I also pack a heavier and lighter moisturiser depending on the weather at the other end. I think also for packing it helps to keep to a similar colour way, Ie. all neutral tones and then an occasional pop of colour is good.
Fave thing to do in Melbourne: Explore! I love discovering the city I used to live in, it’s changed so much. Also visiting places from my childhood, I went to Luna Park last week and loved it.
Define your own style: It’s quite contrasting; feminine v masculine and I like to add something a bit unexpected. Generally I go for comfort above all else.
Shop the ‘Sugar Coated’ collection at Portmans here
Katie McKinnon is a local Melbourne abstract expressionist and contemporary landscape artist who I adore and whose art features in my house as part of the upcoming The Style School series.
Katie’s latest series of mixed media on canvas artworks, Marine Life, are flowing, abstract expressions exploring the fierce beauty and quiet strength of the sea, and the native fish and marine plant species of coastal Australia.
Elk in the Wood was founded in 2012 by Melbourne girl Sarah Kerr, while on maternity leave with her baby boy. Seeking a creative outlet and looking to bring individuality and a bespoke edge to her own home, Sarah started designing and making cushions. Fast-forward 18 months and Elk in the Wood cushions are still proudly designed and handmade in Melbourne, but can now be found online and in speciality homewares retailers across Australia, in Singapore and Sweden, and shipped worldwide. The cushions have a distinctive bold style and feature Swiss cross and deer silhouettes, contrasting prints and shades, playful pompoms, and pops of colour on a beautiful linen/cotton blend. Inserts are made from environmentally friendly recycled polyester.
Elk in the Wood love to collaborate with talented local artisans and Sarah crossed paths one fine day with artist Katie McKinnon. From this meeting an idea was born – transforming Katie’s beautiful artwork into cushions, providing “affordable art” soft furnishings. The first Katie McKinnon x Elk in the Wood collaboration range of cushions was an immediate sell-out. The duo, who are big believers in the transformative power of artwork and cushions in a space, are currently working on a second range showcasing Katie’s Marine Life series. The cushions will be backed with soft leathers and velvets for an added touch of luxury – available in May 2014.
Elk in the Wood is also proud to be the exclusive online stockist for Geelong-based graphic artist Kimmy Hogan. The range of beautiful prints and cushions includes Kimmy’s much-loved Dachshund sleep study sketch, Fragments of Watercolour and Confetti prints.
Katie and Sarah have teamed up with photographer Derek Swalwell and stylist Bee Czarnota to produce these beautiful images, which could help you win RJL’s huge Easter Giveaway!
The RJL Katie McKinnon X Elk in the Wood Easter giveaway (pictured below) comprises:
1 x Katie McKinnon for Meïzai painting, acrylic and ink on canvas, 40x40cm, framed in an American oak shadow box
1 x Katie McKinnon X Elk in the Wood girl deer cushion
1 x Katie McKinnon X Elk in the Wood boy deer cushion
2 x Elk in the Wood new season cushions – apricot zebra and grey Swiss cross
1 x Kimmy Hogan for Elk in the Wood A3 framed graphic print
Total prize value $1500
For your chance to win, repost your favourite of the Katie McKinnon X Elk in the Wood images above on instagram, follow and tag @katiemckinnon_art and @elkinthewoodmelb and hashtag #rebeccajuddloves.
Enter as many times as you like. Competition closes 23.4.14.
Free delivery within Australia to the prize winner. The tan leather saddle chair pictured is not included in the giveaway but can be purchased at meizai.com.au
Elk in the Wood is also offering a special 10% discount for RJL readers online at
www.elkinthewood.net code at checkout: BECJUDDELK14
Discount code valid until the end of April 2014.
Visit katiemckinnon.com.au for stockists.
Melbourne fashion label Steele hark back to their traditional design roots by embracing loser silhouettes paired with pretty prints and sporty mesh for their Winter collection- Euphoria. Inject a splash of embossed gold croc and leather and you have your winter wardrobe covered.
Personal faves of mine from the collection (which I have been wearing to death) include the Cheshina dress in white mesh and the Elfin dress (make sure you’re wearing appropriate underwear as a wind gust in the wrong direction… well, you get the picture. I speak from experience ha!).
Shop the look here
Question from anonymous: Hi Bec, I have recently become a Mum for the first time to a beautiful little girl, Charlotte. She is now 3 months old and although she is the new love of my life it has definitely been a bit of a roller coaster. I didn’t have any troubles breastfeeding until a few weeks ago when bubs has started to refuse feeds which caused me to lose my milk. I have started giving her a bottle – which I am now comfortable with – but constantly feel judged for doing so. I know she is healthy and that should be all that matters. As someone who is in the public eye you must feel this pressure even moreso. I was just wondering what your thoughts were on this topic. It seems in a way that we can’t win – we are judged if we breastfeed in public but then also judged if we don’t! Thanks for taking the time to read my question. And congratulations on the birth of your new baby Billie.
Answer: Congratulations on your baby girl and thanks for your question- it’s a goodie.
Ahhh yes we are always being judged aren’t we? And guess what, it’s always by other women. I don’t know what it is about females, it must be innate, but judging other women seems to be a popular past time. The worst of the ‘judgmentals’ are usually mothers themselves who like to get on their soapbox and force their opinions based on their own experiences, onto everyone else. We all need to understand that women have different pregnancies and parenting experiences, it is not a ‘one size fits all’ approach and it doesn’t matter how you go about your ways, the only thing that is important is that you have a happy, healthy child at the end of the day. This is the message we need to get across.
In my experience, whatever you choose to do- either breastfeeding (which means you’ll need to do it in public if you are ever to leave the house. Isn’t it silly we even need to feel ashamed about doing this?) or bottle-feeding, you will always be judged by some idiot. My advice is not to take any notice. The only people whose opinions matter to me (because believe me, every Tom, Dick and Harry has an opinion on everything I do) are my friends, family and colleagues. You’ve got to do what is right for you and your baby. If your milk has started to dry up then you must feed your baby formula in order for her to thrive and umm, survive. Anyone who begrudges you that is not worth worrying about. Too many idiots on this planet my love, don’t waste your time worrying about what one of them thinks about you.
I only breastfed my son for 6 weeks as we didn’t ‘gel’ very well and I got terrible mastitis. When I switched to formula he was so much happier and so was I. No brainer. Did I feel guilty about not breastfeeding him, of course I did. That old chestnut, ‘mother’s guilt’ will get to you no matter what you do. I’ve breastfed Billie easily since she was born and love it, so does she. Having said that, my husband gives her a bottle of formula every night for her dream feed and when I have to go to work, she will drink formula during the day. She is happy and so am I. It works.
My advice is- if bub’s happy and thriving, that is all that matters. You are doing a wonderful job. Well done.