Lifestyle

Outfit of the day – Tuesday

For today’s outfit, I have picked this denim jumpsuit from F&F clothing which I’ve paired with this ballerina pumps from George. I love how this jumpsuit cinches me in at the waste to create a flattering shape.

Lifestyle

Guest Post | 6 Tips to make your living room cosy

6 Tips to Make Your Living Room Cosy

There are not many things in the home that spring to mind as being more important than creating a warm, cosy living room for friends and family to enjoy. Even when we have splashed out a new sofa or a wooden coffee table sometimes we may feel something is not ‘quite right’. With some careful thought, getting that cosy space is just around the corner. Here are a few things that have worked for me that you may want to try.

1. Add some texture

Bare walls and clean lines can create a stark environment. I love breaking this up by introducing linens, cotton and lightly stained wood. A rug can be a great addition to a living room especially if you have a wooden floor. If you go for a rug, stick to neutral tones. This will make sure there isn’t a clash. Woven materials work really well.
Also, no living room is complete without a scattering of cushions and a throw. A couple of throws can be better than one as cosiness is better experienced together than alone.

2. Abandon the hard edges

For a super cosy living room, try and move away from sharp corners and angular furniture. The more curves we have in a room the more it feels like a nice warm hug.
We can get curves from the arms of the sofa or small tables. If you don’t have room for a table, then cushions come into their own. Scatter them around the room, pile them high and you’ll have curves galore.

3. Include your personal touches

It’s your personality that makes a room cosy. Display photographs of the family and friends. It’s often worthwhile picking up some beautiful frames to show off these special people and moments in your life. Displaying small keepsakes you have collected from travels around the world also works to create a cosy space. Printed canvas wall art can be a great way to bring colour and texture into a room and bring it to life.

4. Bring the outside in

When we bring plants into any room, then we bring life into a room. Plants are living things that interact with our body, mind and home in ways that enhance our lives.
Plants are great for purifying the air, improving our health and creating a space that feels welcoming and stress-free.

5. Attack your stacks

Stacks of bills, small mounds of paperwork and other bits of stressful life are equally stressful to see. Attacking your stacks will instantly add some gold stars to the relaxed, cosiness of your living room.

6. Get lighting right

When choosing lighting in the living room, I opt for warm white or soft white light bulbs to create a warm, cosy light. Turning off the overhead lights can stop bright glare which makes you feel alert and awake. To get around this you can layer your lighting with different light sources to create an inviting setting. Having accent lights can help set the scene with a softer, more diffused light. Using lamps will create focal points on side tables. This will help draw your eye around the space to those inviting corners.
I love having some well-placed candles to create that cosy night in vibe and fill the room with beautiful scents. A little luxury goes along way!

6 Tips to Make Your Living Room Cosy – final thoughts

And these are my top tips for creating a cosy living room. I’d love to hear what your tips and tricks are
for creating your living room. Please leave them in the comments below.

About the author

Amy Crossland is the founder of aubreybay.co.uk – hand-poured soy candles UK. She is passionate about beautiful homes, healthy products in the home and all things cosy.

Lifestyle

Being Gullible

Hello everyone, I just wanted to share a quick story with you of something that happened on Valentine’s Day.

Andy called me into the kitchen as he said he had something to ask me. So I said ask away, thinking nothing of it. He asked me “what noise does a dog make”, I replied “woof”. He then asked me “what noise does a pig make”, I replied “oink”. Then he asked me “what noise does a dolphin male”, my reply “squeak”. And that is when Andy tricked me by making a blowing noise like dolphins do when they come out of the water, whilst squirting water at me too and saying that’s the noise they make.

Needless to say, I had been had and fell for it hook, line and sinker. It’s not the first time I’ve fallen for one of his tricks (I’ve wrote about other occasions on my blog before) but it did make me start to wonder if I’m really that gullible or if he is really good at acting serious whilst playing a prank.

Andy made up for it though because I came back from work to a bubble bath waiting for me & a heart made out of rose petals outside the bathroom.

Lifestyle

Valentine’s Day on a budget

Valentines blog collab

This blog post is in collaboration alongside 13 other great bloggers who will be posting related content on each of their blogs over the next couple of weeks. You can find out more about who is taking part towards the end of this special post.

Valentine’s Day doesn’t have to cost a fortune

So many people think that they need to spend a lot of money just because it is Valentine’s Day and in previous years, I have been guilty of this too. Me and my other half Andy treat each other throughout the year and so we don’t really need to spend lots of money on one day, especially as its not that long since Christmas. I therefore thought of some ideas to help you do Valentine’s Day on a budget.

As an example, I have £20. That needs to cover gifts, food and entertainment. So lets break it down:

Gifts

I only need to get a couple of things as a token gift, as well as a card that I can write a cute message inside. My first stop would be Poundland, because they have some great gifts in there, such as novelty, arts and crafts to name a couple. I’d also be looking at buying Andy’s card in there too. They do baking sets so you could maybe bake your other half a cake. If the budget allows and depending on what I’ve bought in Poundland, I would then look in a couple of charity shops because they usually have brand new items at a fraction of the cost like branded aftershaves that perhaps people have donated from unwanted presents.

Food

With gifts sorted, I would then look at food. Ordering a takeaway would eat up a lot of the budget and so I would probably choose something from a supermarket such as a pizza or one of those Indian meals for two that come in a bag. These usually come in at £5 or under and so is great if you are trying to save some pennies. I’d probably also pick up some sweets or chocolate for afterwards, if we choose not to have the cake I made.

Entertainment

Why not have a cosy night in. Once dinner is out of the way, you could watch a film together, followed by a board game such as monopoly. Valentine’s day should be about spending that time with the person you love, so whatever you choose to do, make sure it is something you will both love and enjoy. You never know, you might even have change left over from that £20 budget!

February 2020 Valentine’s Blog Collab Schedule

Day 1: @perselem will be posting a romantic getaway to Sardinia, Italy. You can check out her blog here: https://www.perselem.blog, Twitter here: https://twitter.com/perselem and Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/perselem
Day 2: @bamboopanda27 will be posting a Valentines Poem. You can check out her blog here: https://www.introvertedcreativity.com, Twitter here: https://twitter.com/bamboopanda27 and Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/bamboopanda27/
Day 3: Break
Day 4: @mybreakingviews will be posting Things to do this Valentines for singles, couples and groups. You can check out her blog here: https://www.mybreakingviews.com, Twitter here: https://twitter.com/mybreakingviews and Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/mybreakingviews
Day 5: Its me, thank you for reading. I’d like to say a special thank you to Luce for allowing me to take part in this amazing collaboration.
Day 6: @karaleecupcake will be posting a Valentines dessert recipe. You can check out her blog here: https://www.talesofbelle.com, Twitter here: https://twitter.com/karaleecupcake and Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/karaleecupcake
Day 7: @mrssleejones will be posting a simple gift guide for Valentines. You can check out her blog here: https://www.mrssleejones.com, Twitter here: https://twitter.com/mrssleejones and Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/ransleejones
Day 8: @_myanxiouslife will be posting about why should we bother with valentines? You can check out her blog here: https://www.myanxiouslife.co.uk, Twitter here: https://www.twitter.com/_myanxiouslife and Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/my.anxiouslife
Day 9: @_itsjustjessie_ will be posting a gifts (or not) Valentines guide. You can check out her blog here: https://www.wondererandtraveler.wordpress.com, Twitter here: https://twitter.com/_itsjustjessie_ and Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/jessiexmills
Day 10: @cozystylist will be posting a Valentines gift guide. You can check out her blog here: https://www.cozystylist.com, Twitter here: https://twitter.com/cozystylist and Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/all_things_cozy
Day 11: @themakeupbybeth will be posting a Valentines make-up tutorial. You can check out her blog here: https://www.themakeupbybeth.com, Twitter here: https://twitter.com/themakeupbybeth and Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/themakeupbybeth
Day 12: @_athenachristy will be posting Valentines inspired outfits for women. You can check out her blog here: https://www.athenachristy.wordpress.com, Twitter here: https://twitter.com/_athenachristy
Day 13: @chimmykins will be posting about what her parents taught her about relationships. You can check out her blog here: https://www.chimmyville.co.uk, Twitter here: https://twitter.com/chimmykins and Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/chimmykins88

Day 14: @luvandlifestyle will be posting a personal account of how my fiance’ first told me he loves me. You can check out her blog here: https://www.luvandlifestyle.com, Twitter here: https://twitter.com/luvandlifestyle and Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/kirstyblogs/

Books · Lifestyle · Travel

Book Review – Water Gypsies by Annie Murray

I was really excited to reading this book as soon as I got it for two reasons. Firstly, Annie Murray is one of my favourite authors, her style of writing captures my imagination instantly. Her books always run in a series of at least two books so that you can follow the story of the characters. Secondly, I am obsessed with canal boats and always have been since an early age. I buy decorative items from a local man who paints the floral detail on canal boats for a living and as a sideline paints the same detail onto pots, pans and other beautiful pieces.

What I didn’t realise when I bought this book was that it was part two in a series, which luckily I had already read the first book called “The narrowboat girl”. It was a couple of years ago that I read it but as soon as I started on “Water gypsies”, I was transported back into the world of canal boats as if I had read both books one after the other. Whilst you can still read “Water gypsies” without having read “The narrowboat girl”, I do believe you should read them in order to get a better understanding of what character Maryann’s childhood was like before she became a boat woman. Perhaps a good suggestion on my part for the publishers and indeed authors would be to identify their books on the cover so that we can understand its part of a series! With a bit of luck you never know a publisher might be reading this review.

“Water gypsies” tells a more in-depth story of what life was really like for a boat woman in the 1940s and the hardships that were faced that we perhaps don’t think about now.

I felt there was two main points to the story and the way of life for boat families, where they struggled with a large family, little money, hard work for the husband on top of this was World War II.

From the start of the book I was gripped, whereas sometimes i feel starting a book the story line is slow on the uptake. There were so many unexpected twists and turns throughout the story that I just simply struggled put the book down. Annie’s wonderful descriptions of inside the boat caught my imagination so much that I could almost imagine myself being there. Her use of local slang also had me reading the book in my head with a Birmingham accent which was where the character Maryann originated. Overall I think this book was one of the best saga genre books that I have read in a very long time and I will admit that I actually read the last quarter of the book in one go because i was so intrigued to its ending (I finished it at 2am). If you love a little bit of history alongside your romance and saga books like I do then this book is the one for you.