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Netflix and London Fashion Week

To celebrate London Fashion Week Netflix has teamed up with Natalie Hartley, Fashion Director at Glamour magazine to create ten easy and stylish tips on how to get the look of your favourite film or TV actress.

“As Fashion director of Glamour Magazine, I am constantly on the hunt for fashion inspiration wherever I go, whatever I do. For me Netflix has become a one-stop-shop for ideas. Whether I am organising a high fashion photo-shoot based on the fabulously manipulative Claire Underwood from House of Cards, or a summery sport-lux feature drawing motivation from the preppy cheerleaders in Bring it On, I can always find something to spark my creativity.

Let’s face it we don’t always have the time or money to keep buying into the latest trends, so using the characters to inspire the way you put an outfit together from your own wardrobe is always fun.

The key is to trust your instinct, and always be comfortable in what you are wearing.”

- Natalie Hartley, Glamour Magazine Fashion Director

Gossip Girl Series 1 – 6

Blake Lively is always well put together and she is not afraid to wear colour. If you are afraid of colour the easiest way to begin is to add a bright pair of shoes to a plain black outfit. Blake loves to accessorize so why not wear statement jewels with a simple t-shirt and add a blazer to give it that upper west side twist.

House of Cards Series 1 – 2

With House of Cards returning to Netflix for a second series this Valentine’s Day, Claire Underwood’s stylish but minimal look is a great one to copy. To recreate this wear a fitted dress layered over the top of a shirt for an extra stylish detail – this also works as a great cover up for those not wanting to bare arms. Structure is key to this look so make sure clothes are flattering. Go for knee length skirts with a kick hem for a more striking look.

The Bridge Series 1

The way to get Sofia Helin’s Scandinavian-chic look is to wear your usual pair of skinny jeans but rock it up with a great three quarter length coat or add a leather biker jacket. Keep colours tonal and simple and add a strong block heeled boot to finish your look.  I would opt for a cross body satchel bag, which is a great style for mums as it means you can still use both your hands for other tasks!

The Bridge

Confessions of a Shopaholic

Isla Fisher is all about statement designer clothes but I don’t think you have to spend a lot to look good, its how you wear what you have. In this film she would style animal print with bold coloured dresses and even clash pinks and reds. Checks and animal prints are bang on trend and easy to pair with colours.  There are no rules here, anything goes!

Annie Hall

Annie Hall is the ultimate style icon for anyone who loves to add a masculine twist to her wardrobe. Quick tip for this look is to raid a male wardrobe for an oversized shirt that can be worn with jeans and a man’s blazer. You can wear skinny jeans if that suits you the most or be true to the trend, and style with a pair of wide legged trousers and flat brogues.

The Help

The easiest way to get the look is to find simple floral A-line dress shapes and add a denim jacket for a modern update. Cropped trousers are a key style worn with a midi height heel. Cut the sleeves off an unwanted shirt and add to a pencil skirt. Mix and match your pastel shades and look out for boxy shaped bags.

Damages Series 1 – 5

Glenn Close can really work a simple shirt; it’s a classic wardrobe piece and worth investing in with many high street options available. Wear with a loose pair of trousers and a trainer to give it an edge for day or add a simple court shoe and earrings to dress this up for night. A plain white shirt always keeps things looking fresh.

Mr. Selfridge Series 1

Choose lace, cream and full-length skirts to recreate Rose Selfridge’s look.  An easy way to work her style into your wardrobe is to concentrate on the neck area. Adding a high neck blouse under a sweatshirt will instantly update something so ordinary. Keep your hair up to elongate the neck and add a cute pair of earrings to complete the look. Cropped jackets also look great here and can be worn with a pair of jeans.

mr selfridge

Iron Lady

Love her or hate her Margaret Thatcher has become a huge style icon of our time. Her distinct trademark piece was her pearls so the easiest way to represent her style is to add pearl earrings or a simple single strand necklace to any outfit, it would even look great with a plain white tee. Opt for a more traditional straight leg trouser cut or add a pencil skirt to complete.

Bring It On: In It To Win It

Prada has overhauled the sports trend this summer and possibly might have even taken inspiration from this film! For an easy wardrobe update invest in a bright pair of trainers and wear with everything!  Other quick fixes include wearing a silk bomber jacket, or a sporty all in one that means you don’t have to think too much if time is of the essence!

This February, Clifford the Big Red Dog® made his appearance on Netflix, both Imogen and Joseph have been enjoying his adventures and Imogen has even drawn a picture of him with a sparkly hat.  He might just need a bit of fashion advise from Natalie!

Clifford the Big Red Dog

Vinyl Flooring: Durability You Can Afford

Vinyl Flooring: Durability You Can Afford

Anyone passionate about crafting or cooking probably spends a lot of time in the kitchen. If this is the case, it’s important that your kitchen floor is durable and resistant to spills and heavy foot traffic. Vinyl flooring is an extremely popular flooring style for use in the kitchen, as it is water and stain-resistant making it perfect for craft and cooking mishaps, which are inevitable!  Even better, vinyl flooring is extremely affordable and offers a lot of style options! Today’s manufacturers are creating vinyl flooring that is both visually beautiful as well as extremely durable.

There are two types of vinyl flooring, which are sheet flooring and vinyl tile. Sheet vinyl flooring is laid down in sheets, and tile vinyl flooring is laid down much like traditional tile flooring. Tile vinyl flooring is perfect if you want to get creative with unique patterns, but many people prefer sheet vinyl flooring as it is sometimes easier to install.

Vinyl Flooring

Vinyl flooring is great because it’s not only durable and able to withstand a beating, but it provides a lot of comfort underfoot, as well as noise reduction. Because it’s less expensive than many other flooring options, you can honestly replace the flooring throughout your whole house! Vinyl flooring is a very popular option for homes with children and pets, because of its easy maintenance and extreme durability.

If you’re in the process of remodeling your kitchen or even your craft room, consider installing vinyl flooring today!

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Our #ZackandQuack Party

On Friday with held our very own #ZackandQuack at home as well as on Twitter with @UKMumsTV and @NickJrUK.  Imogen, Joseph and their best friends gathered after school for some great craft activities and the UK premiere of the new Nick Jr show Zack and Quack.  This is What we got up to.

Our first task was to create something in a group craft activity.  The children all very quickly decided that they’d like to make the pop-up race car that Imogen had seen on a sneaky clip of the show.

Zack and Quack
Our pop-up race car takes shape and Imogen and Sebastian get busy decorating wheels.

Zack and Quack
Wheels done, it’s time to decorate!

Zack and Quack
Ta da!  Creation complete it was time to tune into Nick Jr for the premiere of Zack and Quack.  The children were amazed when they saw the first episode “Pop Up Speedway” where they saw the racing car they’d just made hit the screen.

Zack and Quack
We all really enjoyed Zack and Quack, especially when Zack and his friends pull the tabs on their amazing pop up world.  Imogen can’t wait until the next episode this Friday.

After the show the children decided to decorate their own treasure/trinket boxes and made magic keys from pipe cleaners to keep their secret treasures safe.

Zack and Quack
Fun was had by all, thank you to UKMumsTV and Nick Jr for having us and don’t forget to tune into Nick Jr (Sky 165, Virgin 715, through BT Vision and TalkTalk channel 318) at 4.30pm this Friday for the next exciting Zack and Quack episode.

Keeping Fit with Netflix

Last month I became one of Netflix’s Stream Team, a team of bloggers trying out Netflix and showcasing the best bits in monthly blog posts.  This month is all about keeping fit.  Although January is truly done and dusted, Netflix are doing their upmost to help us keep our New Year’s resolutions and have teamed up with fitness expert Niki Wibrow to create easy to follow exercises that can be done whilst catching up on your favourite TV show.

We all lead busy lives, especially us Mums, and gym time is a luxury that most of us just can’t afford.  Another thing I never get time for is watching TV, so the idea of multi tasking and exercising in front of the telly sounded perfect.

Niki Wibrow has developed three bespoke exercises concentrating on five
different areas. Each can be performed in different combinations, at different
speeds and at different numbers of repetitions to suit your fitness plan.

1. Warm-ups – Cardio, Boxing Combos & Yoga Swings

2. Legs – Skaters, Spider Squats & Plies

3. Arms – Dolphin, Walking Planks & Tricep Dips

4. Core – Toe Taps, Twisting Planks & Seated Abs

5. Back – Lying Superman, Standing Stars & Kneeling Superman

Now you have your exercises sorted what are you going to watch?  These suggestions from Netflix are perfect for building your exercise routine AND eliminating boredom whilst your doing it!

Beginner – Approx 20 – 25 minutes

20-25 mins20-15 mins120-25mins2

 Intermediate – Approx 30 – 40 minutes

30-40 mins30-40mins130-40mins2

Advanced – Approx – 50 – 60 minutes

50-60 mins50-60 mins1Picture shows: DCI John Luther (IDRIS ELBA)

Your Invitation to Our #ZackandQuack Twitter Party

This Friday (7th February) between 3.45pm and 5.45pm you’re all invited to spend the afternoon with us and UKMums.tv whilst we host a Twitter party to celebrate the UK premiere of Zack & Quack on Nick JR.

Zack & Quack

Zack is an adventurous and dynamic 7 year old boy and along with his best friend and side kick Quack (an impulsive young duck) they live inside the most amazing pop-up book ever.  It’s a place full of fantastical surprises – where pulling pop-ups makes exciting and unexpected things happen. From the second they step into their garden the adventure begins. Exciting new worlds and fantastic voyages quite literally unfold before your eyes.

Zack & Quack

In the premiere episode “Pop-Up Speedway,” Zack and his friends build a pop-up race car and Zack wants to prove it’s a winner on the greatest raceway ever. Zack and Quack will have to use all of their pop-up “engine-uity” to show that their homemade hot-rod is just as good as the other cars. If you simply can’t wait until Friday there are sneaky Zack & Quack clips and games over on the Nick Jr website.

The party coincides with the screening of the first ever episode of the new series which will be shown on Nick Jr at 4.30pm and as ever there’ll be chances to win some great prizes too.  Get following @UKMumsTV and the hashtag #ZackandQuack for all the party fun and games.  We hope to see you there!

Keep Your Children Safe: Household Electrical Appliances Safety Tips

Electricity is such an important and longstanding part of our lives that we seldom notice all the ways we use it and all habits we have learned to keep ourselves safe. It’s easy to forget that what comes automatically to an adult may never occur to a child, especially not to a small child. Ever-useful electricity can be dangerous in so many ways. If you have children, then you need to be aware of all of them.

For the Littlest Ones
The smallest children don’t know what electricity is, but they love to touch things and put them into their mouths. Remember that their mouths are wet and that water conducts electricity. Live plugs that pose little danger to adults can be a hazard to small children.

Never leave a live charger or connector unplugged when there are small children around. That means that the chargers for your mobile phones, laptops and other electronic devices should always be removed from the outlet when not in use. Devices with removable power adapters, such as radios, speakers and some small appliances, should be kept out of the reach of children. Remember, they can pull out the removable power cords and put them into their mouths.

Of course, you need to be careful with outlets, too. Outlets should be kept switched off, and for extra protection, you can plug plastic covers into the openings. Remember, small children can flip the switches on the outlets almost as easily as you can.

Teach Your Children To Respect Electricity
Older children need to be taught to respect electricity. Websites like Think Safe can walk them through electrical safety lessons, and you can reinforce those lessons in your home.

Rather than banning your older children from using outlets and electrical devices, teach them to do so responsibly. Show them how to identify and avoid live wires and teach them to keep electrical devices far away from water. Modern electronics are so obliquitous and so often-used that it can be easy to forget that they pose an electrical hazard. They should never be operated near water or with wet hands.

Fires May Be a Bigger Concern Than Shocks
According to the Electrical Safety Council, “Every year in UK homes, about 70 people die and 350,000 are seriously injured from electrical accidents,” and approximately half those injuries are due to electrical fires. Electrical fires are most often caused by worn out cords, overheated wiring, faulty appliances and overloaded outlets.

Both pets and small children can chew on cords, endangering themselves and creating a fire risk at the same time. Inspect cords regularly, and look out for signs of wiring problems like power flickers and a hard to trace burning smell.

Beware of overloading sockets, as well. Power strips and plug adaptors can allow you to run more than one device from a single outlet, but is it a good idea? Each outlet should be limited to 13 amps or 3000 watts of output. The Electrical Safety Council has a calculator to help you avoid overloading outlets. They also keep a list of electrical product recalls. Make sure that none of your electrical appliances are on the list.

If you have taken advantage of the new fixed energy prices, then your family has plenty of electricity to spare. Make sure that it’s used safely.

Sponsored Guest Post

Shop Locally from the Comfort of your Own Sofa with MyHigh.St

With only 18 days until the big day, this weekend is set to be one of the busiest shopping weekends of the year.  This Saturday (7th December) is also Small Business Saturday, a campaign encouraging people to shop local to support small businesses in their local communities.  Local shopping is something I actively try to do but admittedly fail most of the time because the convenience of online shopping from my own sofa is far too tempting.  MyHigh.St have come up with a genius solution to my laziness with an independent online retail emporium!

MyHigh.St At the moment MyHigh.St showcases “The Best of the West” with the West Countries favourite independent shops and retailers but they are steadily growing and will soon include high streets from all across Britain.  70 pence of every pound spent on MyHigh.St benefits local high streets and independent traders, helping them and their community thrive.  When you compare that to the shocking 5 pence in every pound spent with a chain, MyHigh.St certainly gives you the effect of “Feel Good Shopping”!

There are some wonderful products featured on MyHigh.St, everything from fresh meat and poultry, toys, clothing, furniture and even cleaning products to sit beside your kitchen sink (couldn’t find an actual sink!).  The best thing about MyHigh.St is that because all of the products come from independent retailers you’ll find something unique, handmade and bespoke rather than mass produced.

Here are just a few of the goodies I’ve spotted whilst browsing the site this morning.

A Selection of Goodies from MyHigh.St

These include a Harris Tweed Handbag from Two Daft Ducks, a Tilley & Grace “Eliza” Pendant, handmade soap from PoppyGreens Home and may favourite, Macaroons from Goodfellows, yum!

With MyHigh.St you can “shop local” from the comfort of your own sofa online 24/7 and either have your shopping delivered or use their click and collect service to have your goodies ready and waiting for you.  If you want to “break the chain” and “shop local” the MyHigh.St is the place for you!

Hive Active Heating ~ Designed to Save on Your Engery Bills

Let’s face it energy is never going to be cheap and with prices going up all the time we as a family do all we can to keep the bills as low as we can.  Hive is an exciting new product which has been designed to allow you to do just that.

It uses innovative technology which allows you to monitor, alter and control your water and heating via your smartphone or internet browser.  Even when you’re away from home the quick touch of a button on your smartphone, tablet or laptop can adjust your heating or hot water and you can also receive alerts when temperatures reach certain levels.

Hive Active Heating comes at a cost of £199, which includes installation by a engineer worth £80, there is an option to purchase without installation at £159.  With the average user saving around £150 per year Hive will just about pay for itself in a year with the added bonus that you’ll never come home to a cold house or one without hot water again!

As well as installation, you’ll receive everything you need to control your heating and hot water remotely including a sleek, wireless thermostat to control when you’re at home which has a clever automatic frost protection to help avoid frozen pipes.

hive-thermostat

A hub which is connected by your engineer to your broadband router, this enables you to control your thermostat remotely.

hive-hub

and a receiver which will be placed near to your boiler which allows your boiler and wireless thermostat to communicate.

The Hive App is free to download and is available for both the iPhone and android and will allow you to control your heating and hot water wherever you are.  You can very simply see if the temperature has risen or fallen and change your settings, boost your hot water or heating to turn it on for an extra hour and set up to 4 events in your diary schedule meaning you’ll never again have to heat an empty home.

the-app-4

We all lead busy lives nowadays and I’ve thought of at least 5 instances this week so far when it would have come in very handy.  Like when we decided to take a walk around the park on the way home from school and were home an hour and a half later than usual and when Tony had to catch a very, very early train and when I was in bed when I realised I hadn’t set the heating to come on for him.  Needless to say I stayed where I was – poor Tony!

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Brighten up your kitchen in aid of Children in Need

Are you doing anything to raise money for Children in Need this year?  If the answer is not a lot AND you’re in need of something to brighten up your kitchen then take a look at this!

The-exclusive-polka-dot-retro-fridge-freezer-available-from-Crampton-Moore-in-aid-of-Children-in-Need_

Sheffield based electrical retailer Crampton & Moore and white goods manufacturer Servis, have designed a one-of-a-kind Pudsey Bear inspired retro fridge to auction off, with 100% of proceeds going to this year’s Children in Need. Consumers can make their bid on eBay for a chance to win the unique polka dot retro fridge freezer.

Bidding for the limited edition fridge, in Classic Cream with Children in Need style polka dots, started yesterday and ends at 11am on Saturday 16th November.

Steve Lineton, E-Commerce Developer of Crampton & Moore commented: “Having worked with six different charities in the past, we are really excited to be part of this year’s Children in Need. Crampton & Moore has recently partnered with Servis and we thought an eye-catching product such as the retro fridge freezer would be ideal to help us raise money for the charity.

“We are proud to support such a worthy cause and hope consumers will join us next week and make their bid for the chance to win this exclusive fridge freezer.”

Servis’ retro collection fuses vintage style with modern cooling technology and is ideal for a household looking for extra food space. The retro fridge freezer boasts a practical capacity of up to 335 litres of fridge and freezer space, giving plenty of room to stock up ahead of the Christmas period.

In addition to the retro collection, Servis’ dishwashing, laundry and cooking appliances are also available from Crampton & Moore.

For more information or to place your bid, do so here.

Tesco Clubcard giving me a much needed “Boost” this Christmas

It may only be October but the stores already have filled their shelves with cards, wrapping paper and gifts galore, adverts give the kiddywinks as much viewing pleasure as the television programmes themselves all I need now is to hear that “Holidays are coming” and I’ll finally admit we’re almost there!  Whilst I’m not feeling festive at all, well come on it IS October, I’m starting to get organised.  Tickets for the Christmas Eve panto have been booked and there is a very small box in my attic containing a few presents for Imogen and Joseph that I have stashed away.

Christmas is always a highly expensive time of year so I, like most, squirrel my loyalty points especially for this time of year.  Yesterday, Tesco launched it’s infamous Clubcard Boost (the new name for Clubcard Exchange) and I took full advantage of the points I’ve earned feeding my family, filling my petrol tank and heating my home over the past year and filled my online basket with presents for the kiddywinks paying a whole pound and sorting their stocking fillers, main presents and their Christmas Eve stocking in one fair swoop!

Here’s just a few of the things winging their way to us as I type.

Our Tesco Clubcard Boost Goodies

Clubcard Boost, as always, gives you a great choice with ten departments at Tesco to chose from giving you double your voucher value including toys and bikes, Finest Wine and Champagne, clothing, home and the new Hudl tablet.  Days and Eating out will give you a massive four times their face value and hotel breaks from lots of great names will give you three times their value.

Clubcard_Boost_

It’s also easier than ever to boost your Clubcard points, if you’re using them online there’s no waiting to exchange them as they’ll automatically be worth double at the checkout and if you want to use them in-store Tesco aims to have your vouchers within the hour!  You just need to remember to Boost before the 20th December and spend them before 31st December.  To see how it works and for a full list of the departments included take a look here.

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