19 September 2014

Family Day Trip: 8 things to do in Dural and Brooklyn, NSW

I've been hugely lucky this year to be loaned a zippy Ford EcoSport Titanium as part of the Kidspot Voices of 2014 program and this weekend took advantage of the gorgeous Spring weather to take the EcoSport for a semi-rural escape/half-day trip to peaceful Dural, NSW.

Dural is only 36 km north-west of the Sydney CBD but feels like you've reached the country, with its rolling hills, horses, farms, and views out to the Blue Mountains. It's instantly relaxing and perfect for a Sunday drive - ours was in the Ford EcoSport Titanium - a small SUV, but a comfortable fit for our family of four (including child restraint and booster seat). I have to admit, being 157cm, visibility can be challenging in most SUVs, but I felt the EcoSport fitted me perfectly.

Next time you want a mini escape that's not maxi distance from Sydney, read on for my favourite stops in this Sydney suburb:

Ethical gifts flash sale from Happy As Larry Designs

Lovely Bondville sponsor Happy As Larry Designs is having a flash sale to make way for more product in the lead up to Christmas. Get all your gift shopping done early! Here are a few of my favourites on sale:

100% wool rose cushion. was $44.95 now $20.00

Velvet and cotton hand-stitched Indian baby quilt. Was $149.00 now $119.00

OMM Designs memory game; great for older children through to adults and looks super stylish. Was $29.95 now $19.95

100% felted wool pebble rug. Was $349.00 now $120.00 (save $229!)

Rabbit and Bono felt softies, made from 100% wool. Was $44.95 now $29.95

What are you loving? Head over quick sticks to snap up a bargain (and free shipping on all orders over $25!)

Images: Happy As Larry Designs

16 September 2014

Kip & Co. new One Fine Day collection for baby and kids

Kip & Co. are the Queens of mix-and-match.  They are styling geniuses! Add their beautiful bed linen, pillows and bean bags to these amazing Incy Interiors beds (below) and it's a feast for the senses.

Here are four very different rooms for kids and babies, mixing and matching pieces from the new One Fine Day collection with limited edition Incy Interiors beds. First up, an Indian-influenced girl's room (amazing combination of the Munster leopard sheets with the floral!):

Udder effortlessly cool children's clothes - huge sale

I've been following Fliss from Udder's journey for years along the south-east coast of QLD creating beautiful handmade toys and effortlessly cool kids' clothes, and now to Bali where she and her family are continuing their creative endeavours. Sadly for us, Fliss is discontinuing her children's clothes line to focus on her new ceramics line (exciting!), but the good news for us is that her gorgeous clothes have been heavily reduced (up to 70% off!).

15 September 2014

New Oobi SS14 girls clothes and now for tweens!

Oobi is one of those children's clothing brands that has a true cult following. Oobi Mamas love Oobi with a passion and really connect with the labels fresh, fun, 'let them be little' ethos and mix-and-match prints. My girls have worn and loved so many Oobi pieces and still live in their Oobi hats, which is why we are excited to see this classic Australian brand expand up to size 11 for tweens!

11 September 2014

My daughter's high tea party 7th birthday

My daughter wanted a high tea party - as girly as they come - for her 7th birthday. Of course the kids had to have proper mini tea cups (found at a St Vinnies for a steal) and apple juice, poured from a tea pot. What a great theme! It's really easy to pull together a party that's inexpensive and effective by keeping the palette to pastels and pinks, and using an abundance of flowers. The perfect party for Spring. Lots of tips below...

Party: 7th birthday party
Organised by: Mum Steph Bond-Hutkin (that's me!)
Location: Sydney, NSW
Theme: High Tea party

5 September 2014

Free Father's Day printables - cards and more

Tinyme has done it again with a fabulous collection of free printable cards and stationery for Father's Day.

Simply head to Tinyme to download the printables, print out on your own printer, fold and you're done. Great last minute Father's Day ideas!

Images: Tinyme

4 September 2014

Our DIY bathroom renovation before and after pics

Well, renovation is a bit of an overstatement, it's more of a bathroom makeover. And bathroom is also a bit of an overstatement - it's actually a tiny loo and sink, but as reno newbies, we thought it was a perfect first project to tackle by ourselves. Here's the dark and dingy before pic:

Ugh - that poly S trap and down pipe was the worst. We live in an amazing 1973 Pettit and Sevitt home right on the edge of Lane Cove National Park; and although we love the wood cabin feel, there is plenty of room for improvement - to lighten things up a little, and add our own more modern stamp while staying true to the intent of the style and keeping as much wood as possible.

Rather than spend a lot of money on plumbing, we decided to keep the position of the sink plumbing, and the toilet. The quarry tiles are original to the home, and we decided to keep them too. Everything else had to go!

3 September 2014

Mint and hot pink kids study space ideas

It's time for our almost-seven-year-old to get a big girl's work space for her homework/sticker collection/school banking/enormous stationery collection. I'm thinking mint and hot pink and put together this little mood board/vignette as inspiration.

2 September 2014

Make: Felt patches for holey leggings

Winter has been very cruel to the leggings in our house. There is nary a pair without a holey knee or two. But rather than throw them away, I spent a few hours making felt patches to cover the holes and voila - even cooler tights!

To make these knee patches, I drew a heart shape onto paper and cut out, to make a pattern. I then pinned the pattern to scraps of felt and cut out heart shapes. Then I positioned and pinned the hearts over the knee holes, and hand-sewed with a simple running stitch.

Easy and so effective! You could also cut simple shapes like circles, stars triangles and squares. Raid the cookie cutter drawer to make some patterns. A gem-shape would look great, especially with some contrasting stitching to mark the facets! Let me know if you make felt knee patches for your kids' leggings or pants - I'd love to see pics.

Note - I wash with cold water and I don't use the dryer; both of which may affect the felt and cause shrinkage.

[My little one wears her leggings with a tutu from Tutu du Monde.]

Image: Steph Bond-Hutkin | Bondville

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