I just love to tidy!

A friend very kindly complimented on how tidy our house is and asked how I achieve it given I work full time and have a 2 year old.

Well, I think given that I am out of the house most of the week and little one is at nursery goes a long way to keeping the house tidy but it did get me thinking if my method and storage choices would be helpful to others, so here goes.

  1. Everything has a place which I think is a huge help in putting it away – and if it doesn’t have a place, it doesn’t last long in the house. I honestly think I could find anything in our house with my eyes shut!
  2. Little PB doesn’t have a play room so I have ensured that his toys are kept to a minimum sorting through them every birthday & Christmas and passing them onto friends or charity. Little PB also loves a good game of tidying up…..no, really he does
  3. Cheap canvas drawstring bags are great for storing a collection of toys. You can buy them via Amazon and as well as looking prettier and lasting longer than cardboard boxes, it makes putting toys away super quick and easy
  4. Storage is in keeping with our interiors , for example, a toy box that is a distressed travel chest, dresser with drawers and shelving for maximum space and wicker baskets (I do love a pretty wicker basket!)
  5. I tidy each room completely before I move onto the next – if something in the lounge belongs in the kitchen, I just put it in the kitchen and finish the lounge first. This lessens distraction as well as multiple trips up and down the stairs! I work clockwise through the house so I know if I’ve missed anywhere easily
  6. Well plumped cushions – this may sound odd, but a set of cushions on a sofa that make it look complete, will help to allude this vision of tidiness!
  7. I always make the bed!! I dont think I would function properly each day if I left the house without making the bed – it makes a bedroom go from messy to tidy in minutes!

I hope this gives you some good ideas! Please share any tidying tips you have – I find tidying quite a mindfulness task and feel so much more prepared with a tidy home

x PB x

Back in business…

I’m pretty certain that I speak for most new mummies out there that planning every small detail in the anticipation of your little bundles appearance to this world is fun and exciting!

It’s fun and exciting to put your focus into deciding whether to have a hospital bag AND a labour bag……what colour to paint the nursery……what the new arrivals first outfit will be…..who will look after the dog when the waters break……

And the key to why it’s fun and exciting is because we have oodles of time and (for the most part until we are doing an impression of a weeble) we have the energy.

1 year later….

I can honestly say that along with not knowing a love like I have for our little human, I have never known tiredness and a lack of energy like I have had over this past year. The learning curve is intense, the sleepless nights feel relentless (even though there really weren’t that bad!) and no amount of coffee could put that sparkle back in my eye. But, I’ve loved every minute. Well, almost…..

Parts of what made me ME became hidden in this last year….which made me feel resentful…. which I then regretted for feeling that way! Vicious bloody circle!

But after a very relaxing holiday and an opportunity to reflect, I’ve decided that this  can change.

Being able to balance a full time job and being a mummy means that it’s equally important to invest time to myself and my old life and the main area I want to focus on is right here. You’re reading it.

Pineapple & Button Co is back in business. I’ll be writing more blogs, I’ll be creative with P&B Co products and will share photos of beautiful places and even more beautiful planners.

However, I can’t ignore that my new accessory is now a changing bag, so I will be writing a series on Baby Travels sharing our experiences of holidays and day trips and how they can be baby and family friendly, even if at first they don’t seem it!

As a mummy attempting to be creative and stylish, I hope you enjoy what’s to come as much as I’ll enjoy writing it!

Adding a flourish of Winter style

I love living in the Countryside watching the seasons change – from the fresh green leaves that appear on the trees in Spring, the bright sunshine yellow of the corn fields in Summer, the fiery red of crisp Autumn leaves and the frosted mornings in Winter.

Although it has been unseasonably mild so far in my little village, I still embrace my seasonal living and have changed up my Autumn displays for some sparkly and festive decorations.

I’m not able to go full out with Christmas decorations as its Mr PB’s birthday in December – if I had my way, the tree would be up on December 1st……between you and me, I’ve been listening to Christmas songs on the quiet since the beginning of November.

However, adding a flourish of Winter style feels more appropriate when we open the first window on our Advent Calendar.

My greatest hack this year as been the coffee table display – a wreath purchased from TKMaxx (surprise, surprise) with a small centre which fits this hurricane vase with complimenting gold candle. A perfect centrepiece requiring little work from you but still draws the eye.

 

20151207_160551967_iOS20151207_160639975_iOSSomething that does require my creative flair is my main wreath. Soon becoming a Christmas tradition, a fabulous friend of mine hosts a wreath making class at the beginning of December. Run by a very inspirational florist called Lynsey from The White Horse Company, she takes us through step by step in creating the most beautiful wreaths. You certainly don’t need to have any knowledge other than a keenness to create….and here is this years end result! Using a base of pine fur, I gradually built height using a variety of green foliage. Two dried hydrangea heads draw your eye with a splash of colour from some thistle and japonica. The bow completes this country wreath.

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My final Winter addition is the centrepiece on the dining room table. With artificial flowers purchased from…..you guessed it, TKMaxx, I simply applied basic floral arranging techniques of placing each piece with the vase in the centre of the table and constantly turning it, ensuring I achieved a 360degree display so that all guests get to enjoy from their seat around the table. Using bright white, rose gold, deep purple, taupe and some glittery trailing ivy, I love the variety of height and textures. The subtle sparkle glistens like fresh snow making it the perfect Winter addition to any centrepiece.

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Please share how you have added Winter style into your homes. Follow the links to the right of this blog to find me on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest

x PB x

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#blogspiration

Some people have asked me how I continue to write blogs twice a week. How do I find content and something to talk about? Well, most of my inspiration comes from those around me – my family, my friends, my travels. But possibly most importantly, I am inspired by those that I follow on social media and the magazines and blogs that I read consistently.

It may seem a small milestone but we have recently achieved 100+ followers on Instagram and I have come to realise the power behind a loyal following. So, to share my gratitude and appreciation, I thought I would share my top blogs & favourite magazines as well as the ever growing YouTube & Instagram accounts.

Stationery & Planning

BLOGS

StudioCalico, StudioL2E and My Marvelous Life – the wonderful individuals behind all these blogs inspire me in a variety of ways. The photos, the content and just the ability to motivate me to want to improve on my life skills!

PinappleAndButtonCo-Icon-01http://www.studiocalico.com/blog

PinappleAndButtonCo-Icon-01http://www.studiol2eblog.com/

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YOUTUBE

TheResetGirl – where do I start to express how much of a considerable impact Cori has had on my planning style. By far, the one and only planning and scrap booking YouTuber you should watch. She consistently shares inspiring stories and creations that want me to try and try again to make it perfect. But it goes beyond Planning and is more about women being strong leaders and making a name for themselves in a hobby they love – true inspiration.

PinappleAndButtonCo-Icon-01https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCbrX05bknKFXthMyadIthwQ

INSTAGRAM

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PinappleAndButtonCo-Icon-01GeraldineJayne

If a picture could speak a thousand words! Well, these ladies Instagram feeds will make you drool and want, want want in Stationery and Planning! Warning – enabler alert if you follow them!

Style

MAGAZINES

I regularly purchase;

PinappleAndButtonCo-Icon-01 25 Beautiful Homes

PinappleAndButtonCo-Icon-01Country Living

PinappleAndButtonCo-Icon-01House and Garden

PinappleAndButtonCo-Icon-01Elle Decor.

Spending my Sunday evenings surrounded by magazines and adding inspiration to my interior scrapbook is the most satisfying feeling. Added to that is the excitement of scouring the stores during the week to find as close to equivalents of my interior wish list!

INSTAGRAM

Talk about #stylegoals, SophiePatersonInteriors is beyond inspiring. Her ability to decorate and dress a room is simply sensational! Follow, follow, follow!

I also regularly seek inspiration from CulinaryConcepts – I have shared my candle collection which features their products and there are plenty of style related blogs to come!

Find my Instagram account – pineapplebuttonco – and you will see these ladies on my following list.

I hope that have given you all some inspiration – please share your favourites below!

x PB x

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Recieving a great reception!

This may be a case of “judging a book by its cover” but those first few steps I take into a hotel lobby always seem to determine how I feel about that hotel.

Mr PB and I love to travel and have had the privilege of visiting many fabulous destinations around the globe. I intend to do separate reviews of those special hotels that we have stayed in but I thought I would share some first impressions.

The Royalton, Manhattan – I love New York. It was a dream of mine to visit since a young age and therefore, when the opportunity arose, it had to be right. Mr PB and I scoured the Internet many times over, trying to find that quintessential Manhattan hotel – with the feel of a Brownstone but centrally located. I was so overwhelmed by our final choice – I even cried when I saw the gallery on the internet so heaven knew what I would be like when we actually arrived. Walking through the statement fire engine red doors, you will be taken aback by how dark it is in comparison to most hotel lobby’s. However, the designers have thought carefully to bring you into a space that is both reception, wine bar and restaurant. With large dark leather sofas that you sink into, statement double-sided fires and a gorgeous modern take on wood panelling adorning the walls, you can imagine this lobby transitioning from day to night with little changes. The receptionists are concealed so that your eye is drawn to the bar area, again allowing it to welcome both hotel guests and residents of Manhattan. I would be quite happy sipping on a tea reading a book by day and then changing it up to a fabulous cocktail perched at the bar in the evening. P.S. I did both!

The One and Only, Cape Town – I will be honest and share that prior to our South African trip, I had concerns about the standard of the hotels – how would they compare with the more salubrious that we have stayed in. However, pulling into the entrance at The One and Only, Cape Town, I soon came to realise that this amazing country knows how to be the perfect host. Floor to ceiling windows in a light and airy space give you a beautiful view of table mountain. Dark wood mixed with cream rugs and colonial soft furnishings, it was pleasantly unexpected. And with a bar that would rival most in London, both from the quality of the cocktails and the decor, it was a superb welcome

The Spa Hotel, Tunbridge Wells – although our visit was only for dinner, I fell in love with the Reception area and have been planning my next visit.

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You are greeted by an expansive marbled floor with 3 different areas surrounding a large, gorgeous copper table. Proudly displaying a selection of vases, this table is just out of this world spectacular.  20150704_210808349_iOS20150704_210834998_iOSBanquet seating in a grey and blue floral, pale grey and steel blue sofas and armchairs and an array of table lamps and coffee tables are complimented by the cornflower blue on the walls. Wrought iron occasional tables sit around the edge sectionning the 3 seating areas providing an opportunity for some stylised placements of magazines, candles and books. I would recommend you book for dinner just to enjoy the reception area!

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Where are your favourite hotel receptions?

x PB x

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The Pineapple & Button Co. R.O. (related objects!)

Prior to setting up The Pineapple & Button Co. I had always be drawn to anything P & B related. I will share in time where the inspiration behind the name came from, but be reassured that for the past 5 or more years, anything Pineapple & Button shaped has come home with me! For example, you will recall from a previous post that one of mine (and Mr PB’s) favourite home accessory is our chrome Pineapple which stands proudly on our mantelpiece.

However, since writing this blog and sharing my passion for all things Stationery + Style, my attraction to P&B R.O. (Pineapple & Button Related Objects) has escalated. In part due to the sudden fascination we all have with Pineapples at the moment, it has become quite easy to add to the collection.

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First up is the most adorable candle – it’s a pineapple and it’s teal – what more could this blog ask for! Another fab fact about this piece – it’s scented and smells divine. It will of course be one of those candles that is never lit but admired from afar. Purchased from Oliver Bonas, priced £12, however, I believe they are sold out. I will try and add a similar link below.

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And perhaps, as is currently the case in P&B HQ, the pineapple will stand beside my next recent purchase –  a white button photo frame. The finish is superb and I love the variety of buttons. Complimenting the brand colours, this photo frame will soon hold a picture of the P&B logo. Purchased from Paperchase, priced £8.

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I shared on Instagram last week that the new uniform for The P&B Co. had arrived…..if only I could get away with wearing it every day…..H&M priced £12.99

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Moving to the Stationery department – a very close friend of mine purchased me this brilliant Pineapple notebook as a thank you gift. The pages are decent quality and the spine is very flexible so it is easy to write in. You will notice from the picture that I have added tabs – watch this space as I will share in a later blog my process to upping this notebooks game!

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My love of crafting and scrapbooking took me to the aisles of Hobbycraft one Saturday afternoon and I “stumbled” across this adorable button embossing punch. Not only does it cut out a button shape piece but also embosses the surround making adorable button like confetti. This will certainly go far with my decoration of planner pages.

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As I am sure most of you that follow this blog will have come to learn, I have become a bona fide planner addict. So, what does every Planner Girl need….washi tape of course. And what washi tape should The P&B Co. own……pineapple washi tape. Having seen this washi tape in so many Instagram posts, I knew it would be hard to come by. I pre-ordered via the Little B page on Amazon and waited 4 weeks….that is planner dedication but oh so worth it.

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Finally, last but by no means least. Whilst I am in love with my very own Pineapple & Button Co. Planner, I spotted the pineapple Emily Ley Simplified Planner whilst conducting “research”. Disappointed to see that it had sold out on her online store, I headed to Ebay where I was fortunate to find a lady in the UK selling one…..fate had arrived at my door. I purchased it not really knowing what purpose it would have but after watching plenty of inspirationals videos on YouTube, I decided to make this my blog planner – it only seemed right given the cover. I will share in a later post what my setup is and how I plan and decorate on a monthly & weekly basis.

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So, I guess having stood back and adored my purchases, I really need to improve upon my hunt for Button goods. Has anyone found a B.R.O that you think would go perfectly with the collection?

Links below. Happy shopping!

x PB x

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White Button Photo Frame – Paperchase – http://www.paperchase.co.uk/button-frame-white-4×6.html

Pineapple T-Shirt – H&M – http://www.hm.com/gb/product/11753?article=11753-E

Button Embossing Punch – Hobbycraft – http://www.hobbycraft.co.uk/hobbycraft-button-emboss-punch/595786-1000

Pineapple Washi Tape – Little B via Amazon – http://www.amazon.co.uk/Little-Foil-Pineapple-Tape-Gold/dp/B00VRKBJZC/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1438632504&sr=8-1&keywords=little+b+pineapple

Emily Ley Simplified Planner – http://www.emilyley.com/

How to add Country Cottage style on a budget

Since moving to the country, my love for home accessories has evolved. I would even go as far to state that I have found interior peace with the purchases I have made and the way I style them up. I know what looks good in our home, what accessories would enhance a space and the colour palette that compliments our surroundings.

However, as with most of my style posts, you don’t need to spend £100’s to achieve that Country Cottage charm.

Here are my top 5 ideas that you can re-create in your own home:

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1.
Re-use a jam jar as a vase and fill with sweet peas, roses or hydrangeas – preferably ones cut from your own garden! I picked these morning – how delightful.

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Convert an old photo frame into a chalk board by painting some card in chalk paint. This would look cute hanging in a kitchen or utility room

PinappleAndButtonCo-Icon-013. Fill small terracotta planters with artificial moss and individual flowers (can be found in Hobbycraft) – arrange them in groups of 3 on a shelf to add that rustic charm

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PinappleAndButtonCo-Icon-014. Buy blank cards in the £1 section and hang them from a piece of twine with basic wooden pegs. Creates a cute backdrop behind a bed. Add some fairy lights for extra sparkle.

PinappleAndButtonCo-Icon-015.  Place teacups and saucers (great ones can be found in a charity shop) and issues of your favourite magazines or coffee table books on a wooden tray . Add a vase of flowers for height and colour and place on a footstool. Always add Jo Malone for some added style!

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x PB x

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Adding light to your life….

In an earlier post, I shared that Mr PB had made a plea…..no more cushions. I believe a similar plea may come soon……no more candles!

I seem to have acquired, over the past few years, an eclectic array of candles, tealight holders, lanterns and more.

in all the rooms in our home, there will be a candle of some sort – whether that be decorative, scented or both. I just seem to get a lot of satisfaction purchasing candles. If it is a dull day outside (and there are plenty in the UK), I get so much pleasure lighting all our candles and snuggling down with a good book.

I also love styling a space with a unique collection of lanterns and tealight holders. This has grown since we visited South Africa.

During our stay at Lairds Lodge, Plettenburg Bay, the top of a chest of drawers was filled with a variety of candles – hurricane lamps, lanterns, tealights, candelabras and more. I was keen to try and reflect this look in our home and I am getting there….slowly.

Whilst on safari at Gorah Elephant Camp, Addo, candles were a necessity in the evening due to the permanent lack of electricity. Arriving back from a night time drive around the park, hundreds of hurricane lamps and lanterns would be lit and would emphasise the colonial warmth that the country exudes.

So, here is the collection….(so far!)

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The 2 tall lanterns along with the rectangular lantern sit on a wide windowsill in our garden room. These were purchased from Debenhams and Matalan a few years ago. I am not sure these exact lanterns exist currently but I know that similar types will be available in most home accessory stores.

I love up-cycling, converting a item from its standard use. When preparing for a baby shower, I purchased these Mason Ball jars from the U.S to use as vases around the room. I now use them as tealight holders. Sitting alongside our lanterns and with the garden room having a blue and cream theme, they really add a pop of colour.

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You will recognise the rose gold tealights from a previous post and to compliment these on the fireplace surround, I added the peach candle holders from Dunelm Mill and these delightful copper tealight holders from Culinary Concepts – a superb online shop offering both unique kitchen and home accessories. These were in a recent sale at £4.95 each. Although no longer available, Culinary Concepts do still have similar items on their website.

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Finally, I own a fair amount of scented candles. You will have seen Jo Malone featuring as a regular guest in my photos. The Wild Fig & Cassis is such an intense smell and fills a room within a matter of minutes. That also means that it lasts for ages and given its price compared to other candles, that is a good thing!

I tend to purchase other scented candles from…..TK Maxx (surprise, surprise!). My local store has a great range and my recent favourite is the Thompson Ferrier candle in the scent Crushed Lavender – perfect for this time of year.

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I have put links below of the items (or similar). Happy Shopping!

Do you have a favourite candle accessory or store that you purchase from? As always, I would love to hear your ideas. Please share below.

x PB x

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Lanterns – http://www.debenhams.com/home/home-accessories/candles-holders/lanterns

Mason Ball jars – http://www.amazon.com/Ball-Heritage-Collection-Pint-Bands/dp/B00B80TJX0

Peach candle holders – http://www.dunelm.com/product/blush-pressed-glass-taper-candlestick-1000050003?cmCategoryId=34214

Copper tealight holder (not exact) http://www.culinaryconcepts.co.uk/medium-glasshouse-lantern-copper

Jo Malone candle – http://www.jomalone.co.uk/product/3560/9741/For-the-Home/Home-Candles/Wild-Fig-Cassis-Home-Candle#

Thompson Ferrier candle – http://thompsonferrier.com/default/catalogsearch/result/?q=crushed+lavender

From the sublime to the ridiculous…Our Italian adventure part 2!

Leaving the tranquil calm of Lake Como, we took a 3 hour drive to Venice (Venezia). Hopping on board a vaporetto, we travelled up the Grand Canal which, at times, felt more like a confused motorway with the amount of boats that seemed to dash in front of one another – removal companies, delivery firms and hoards of tourists using the river to it’s full capacity.

We disembarked at San Giglio and made our way to our hotel – AD Place. Tucked away between the winding canal and narrow cobbled streets, the hotel had an unimposing entrance that, without a map, you may well walk past without realising it.

The entrance hall was swathed in heavy Moroccan style fabrics covering the walls and the floor was adourned with lanterns of all shapes and sizes. At night, the candlelight added to an already romantic setting.

Climbing up the uneven stairs, you could only imagine what secret those steps and walls could share, even beneath the bright purple décor. After having to take our luggage up several flights of stairs in Lake Como, I was intrigued as to how this hotel would avoid it without a lift – the answer was in the chairlift type contraption with hugged the staircase!

There was a small bar area with extravagant silver sofas and a fantastic Marilyn Monroe coffee table. This was also where the simple breakfast was served each morning.

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The hotel also benefits from a small, almost bijou, roof terrace. We were fortunate to have this to ourselves on both afternoons – watching the sun disappear behind the red tiled rooftops whilst enjoying a bottle of wine and reading our books was the perfect end to the hustle and bustle of the day.

Entering our room, we were greeted by a bold purple and green colour scheme – not something you would naturally expect behind the traditional brick walls. A large room with double aspect windows which looked down onto the canal, I realised I was in Venice when we were treated to a verse of Nessun Dorma by a passing gondola which resonated up the passageway filling our room.

A four poster bed dressed in voile dominated the room and I’m pleased to share that the bed was covered in cushions of varying textures and a throw

IMG_3543A large white wardrobe and matching dressing table were practical and standard but the dressing room chair was just divine – a traditional button back in lime green and woodwork painted a beautiful lilac.

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The windows were draped in a heavy purple velvet and the walls were covered in a purple and white stripe fabric. I realised during our stay the walls were padded, presuming that Italian preservation orders don’t allow wallpaper but this added to the eccentricity.

The table lamps and floor lamps were dressed in a gorgeous deep purple voile with crystal accents which reflected across the room – not particularly practical if you want to read at night but I guess its a good job I had my Kindle Paperwhite!

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The bathroom was a reasonable size, although the shower was a little cosy compared to the luxury we had in Lake Como.

The piece de la resistance had to be the Granny Smith apple place on a wall bracket. Not obvious at first as so much of the room takes your attention but a bizarre addition that made us both smile…and we aren’t even sure why.

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I am sure that this hotel’s décor would not be to everyone’s taste and some may seek the more Venetian style extravagance but I personally swooned at their ability to mix the bold and brash with the traditional. Venice has an ability to embrace a style that most would not dare and for that, I admire this beautiful city that may one day be forever lost.

x PB x

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