DIY Woven Wall Hanging by Clever Poppy

A few months ago, I tried the Clever Poppy watercolour art DIY kit (you can see my blog about it here). It was an easy, fun project to do with Brooklyn and he’s pretty proud of his artwork which is on display in the kid’s bedroom. When Julie asked if I’d like to try out a new kit she’d been working on, I jumped at the chance! This one was for me, even more exciting, because lets be honest – everything is for the kids these days! I’m not saying older kids can’t give this one a go, but mine are too little so it was all miiiiine *insert evil laugh*.

I was even more excited when Julie told me what it was… downloadable PDF instructions for a woven wall hanging!! Excite!! I’d seen these beauties all over Instagram and loved the look of them, but couldn’t be bothered sitting down watching you-tube tutorials to teach myself. Bingo! Julie’s done the hard work for us! Thanks chick!

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The PDF download is a super cheap $4.99 NZD and tells you all you need to know: what you need, where to buy it, different techniques (including heaps of photos), what order she makes her example wall hanging in, etc. It’s super easy to follow and MUCH easier than I anticipated! A few nights in front of the TV was all it took. Though I warn you… it’s addictive!! You can buy the PDF here.

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You can do whatever colour scheme you like, to fit in with your decor. I copied one of Julie’s and went with white, cream, pastel pinks, lilac and mustard. We don’t really have a colour scheme in our bedroom (where I planned for the wall hanging to go), so I just picked colours that I’m into at the moment. I do love the ones I’ve seen on Clever Poppy’s Instagram with splashes of mint green in them!

My finished hanging is below, I love it! It’s a beautiful addition to our peg-board headboard and looks super pretty in the mornings when the sun is streaming in. It would also make a beautiful gift, not to late to whip one up for a Mothers Day present!

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I also had a quick chat to Julie about Clever Poppy and how she comes up with her ‘clever’ ideas…

Where/how did you come up with the idea for Clever Poppy?
I’ve always loved being creative and making things at home, and noticed that DIY was becoming more and more popular through shows like The Block etc. But I often heard people saying they didn’t have time to do projects, or didn’t know where to start…so I thought there was an opportunity to bridge the gap a bit and make it easier for people to do some home décor DIY!

Where did the name ‘Clever Poppy’ come from?
I debated for ages as to whether to have a descriptive name or a more memorable one for my business, and decided something a bit more interesting would be better at grabbing people’s attention. ‘Poppy’ (or poppet) was my nickname growing up, and I liked how adding ‘Clever’ made it a bit cheeky and implied a sense of achieving something. It kinda came out of nowhere but it stuck!

When you’re not DIY-ing up a storm, what will we find you doing?
Chasing my toddler around (he doesn’t stay still for a single minute haha!)? I am pretty busy to be honest – I work 3 days a week in an experiential marketing agency and 2 days a week on Clever Poppy (plus every other chance I get). We try to hang out with our mates a lot in the weekends and any family that live nearby. Oh and my in-laws have an awesome catamaran that we go away on as much as we can.

How would you describe your home decor style?
For me it’s all about texture and beautiful colours. My fav style hands down is Scandinavian and I would love to deck my house out that way (one day!). But in reality, I end up with more of a style that’s Scandi mixed with a relaxed, rustic, vintage look. It’s definitely a combo of on-trend pieces I love mixed with up cycled and timeless décor.

What is your favourite wall hanging that you’ve made so far?
I made one recently in a combo of white with beautiful mauvey natural shades. This is the first time I’ve shared a picture of it because I haven’t decided whether to keep it or not, but I think it’s definitely my favourite so far!

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Thanks for chatting with me, Julie!

You can find Clever Poppy on Facebook, Instagram and click here for the website.

J x

Haakaa Collapsible Lunchbox – Review + Giveaway

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We got sent some of the new silicone, collapsible, lunch-boxes made by our clever friends over at Haakaa. The 3 compartment lunchbox is made from 100% food grade silicone, and the lid from 100% recyclable food-safe plastic. It’s a great size, great price, and we love it!

I made a short video showing you what you can fit inside, how it works, and what we love about it. I also show some side-by-sides comparisons with other lunch boxes we use, so you can see the size.  Please excuse the awkwardness that is my first ever video review, but I hope you enjoy it!

The lunchbox is only $29.90 and can be purchased HERE.

The giveaway is happening over on Instagram @withthewhittakers right now, for a BLUE lunch box! Check it out!

J x

16 gift ideas for a new baby/mum.

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We’ve all been there. Childless and having to buy a present for a baby or soon-to-be Mum. A friend asked me if I would put together a blog of gift ideas for those that don’t know what the heck to buy. I quote ‘I don’t have kids and I’m pretty committed to my life as a PANK (professional Aunty no kids)’. I’d never heard of that term before (feeling old and fuddy duddy here) but it cracked me up! So for all the PANKs, or those that aren’t even an aunty… this is for you.

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1. I was going to start with a very blunt DO NOT BUY A SOFT TOY. But then thought about it and realised both my kids are currently asleep with their faces smooshed into ‘soft toys’. So I’ll go into more detail… don’t just buy a random soft toy that is just going to get added into the ‘don’t even play with’ pile and never get touched. INSTEAD: Buy something that could be a ‘comforter’ for the new baby (something to comfort them when they sleep). Marlo sleeps with a Jelly Cat Bunny and Brooklyn sleeps with one and also 2 Cuskis. Highly recommend either of these as a gift. Jelly Cats are around $40-$50 and can be found at various online stores including Mighty Ape, Cuski’s can be found at Sleep Store for $34.95.

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2.  If you’re going to buy a blanket/swaddle/wrap… make sure it’s big. At least 120x120cms. Burrow & Be has a cute range of muslin wraps this size and lots of gender neutral designs, so great if you don’t know if you’re buying for a boy or girl. These wraps retail for $38.50 on their website.

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3. Baby Shusher. I’ve blogged about this here. It’s basically a little battery run speaker than makes a ‘sshhhhhhh’ sound and shhh’s the baby to sleep. I still use Marlo’s one now and she’s 7 months old. Best $55 I ever spent! Your friend might look at you weirdly when she un-wraps this, but she will love you for it when the baby is born! They’re $55.95 directly from Baby Shusher HERE.

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4. Milestone Cards. These are used to lay beside the baby and take cute photos of when they’re 1 week, 2 weeks, 3 months, first sitting etc etc. It’s a cute way of keeping track of their milestones. We use Hello My Love ones for Marlo, they are $29.99 and you can buy them HERE. We also have a set of ‘Smilestone Cards’ which provide a good giggle! They’re only $15.00 and you can get them HERE.

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5. Wrap/carrier. These are a total god send in the beginning, especially for subsequent babies if you have a toddler or other kids to run around after. Chekoh wraps are well priced and come in heaps of cute designs. They’re $95 full price on their website HERE (currently on sale though!).

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6. This one is for the coffee lover friends. If you’ve been over to their house and you’ve had a delicious coffee out of a normal coffee cup… do you friend a favour and buy her some double walled coffee cups. Again, she will thank you, I promise. Sometimes it takes me 45 minutes to get through my morning coffee between nappy changing, making lunches etc and these babies keep it warm the whole time. No microwaving coffees in this house! I have Delonghi ones from Harvey Norman, they’re $29 for a two pack. Click HERE.

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7. Clothes in size 6-12m (or bigger). As a new Mum, it’s hard not to get consumed by all the cutesy teeny weeny baby clothes on the shelves. And we go a taaad overboard on those adorable clothes in the teeny tiny sizes. So if you want to buy a cute outfit for the new babe, go ahead – but get a bigger size so to start off her/his bigger wardrobe that Mum hasn’t started on yet 😉 For a girl – don’t be afraid to get something super over the top and gorgeous with a tutu attached!

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8. Breastfeeding Cookies! Katie in the Kitchen cookies are my favourite and have all the goodies to help make that milk full cream and give their baby all the rolls. Not guaranteed, but they taste delicious so they’re not doing any harm by scoffing the bag! You can get them from The Baby Bag HERE – $11.50 a packet.

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9. Kiwi Herb products. It can be super duper overwhelming when your baby gets their first wee cold, and it usually hits when you’re least expecting it. So having a few products on hand already would be super helpful! I highly recommend Kiwi Herb range, it can be used from the get go and is all natural. You can buy it directly from Kiwi Herb HERE, we use the chest syrup and the de-stuff at our house.

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10. Ultrasonic Vaporiser. This will also come in handy when baby has their first cold. I swear by them. I won’t ramble but you can read up about them and buy them HERE. These are a must have in every house hold with kids, in my opinion. They range from $99-$120.

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11. This is a gift idea for the Mum, especially a good idea if the new baby is due in winter. A super snuggly, comfy dressing gown. Perfect for the night feeds, or just all day PJ days if that’s your thing (it’s totally mine). I highly rate Citta dressing gowns, both the husband and I have one, they’re a few years old now but still cozy as anything. And most of all, they can be thrown in the washing machine and dryer if they get spewed/pooped on woohoo! There are loads of stockists for these but I found these cute polka dot ones HERE for $89.90.

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12. Cute shoes. Not always something Mum will go out and buy herself as they’re kind of deemed ‘unnecessary’ by some. So it’s something special you could buy, baby’s first shoes! For a boy I love these cute striped Pretty Brave slip ons from HERE ($49.90) and for a girl I’m a sucker for any of the Baby Wilson range which you can buy HERE ($69-$89).

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13. Lamington merino socks. What I found really hard to find when Marlo was born, was new born socks that actually stayed on her feet! A friend sent us some of her daughter’s Lamington socks to borrow and they were awesome. Especially for a winter baby, merino keeps their wee toes nice and warm. They’re $15.95 for a pair and you can get them HERE.

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14. Cute teething toys. These are pretty much always a hit with the babies when they reach ‘must chew on everything’ status. I’m a particular fan of the ‘oreo cookie teether’ by Haakaa. It’s $19.90 and you can get it HERE. I also love the look of the cute teething toys that Dapper Mr Bear stocks, you can find them HERE and they start at $24.00.

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15. Dribble bibs. They come in loads of cute fabrics and will always be use-full, even if their baby isn’t a dribbler. Solids will come round sooner or later and they’ll definitely be used! I love this vintage floral one from HERE for $12.00 for a girl, and this fun emoji one HERE.

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16. If you’re going to buy some products like shampoo, bum cream etc… I personally would not buy Johnson & Johnson minis (just a quick google will tell you why). Go for a brand like Tui Balms which you can get HERE or Wedela does a cute starter pack of 3 different products for $19.90 which you can get HERE.

I hope you’ve found this helpful! Happy gift buying!

J x