Sunday, 23 June 2013

C.P. Hart ~ The Perfect Bathroom Challenge

Being a keen fan of home décor, when C.P. Hart, one of the UK's leading bathroom retailers and suppliers of bespoke and luxury bathrooms challenged me to design my perfect bathroom, I couldn't wait to get involved. The idea was to set up a mood board, or in my case a pinterest board, and based on a blank canvas of one of C. P. Hart's bathroom suites, to design a bathroom I would love to relax and unwind in. The winning design ~ judged by the team at C.P. Hart, will be rendered into a 3D image, featured on the website and included in the 2014 brochure. C.P. Hart have some really gorgeous bathroom design ideas and there is lots of choice for me to select my favourite 'pins' for my pinterest board. Although C.P. Hart do some wonderful modern bathrooms I knew straight away I wanted a vintage style bathroom and enthusiastically began pinning. I loved this vintage-esque image taken from the website, and used it as my inspiration.

When it came to creating a mood board for my perfect bathroom, I first thought of some words to help inspire me. I came up with:
Vintage: I just love all things old fashioned and for me creating a vintage look had to form part of my challenge, I find a vintage look creates that personal, individual touch.
Floral:  Whether it be fresh flowers, a floral painting, or even some floral towels, I knew there had to be some flowers in there.
Light:  I love a clean crisp background and think makes a perfect backdrop for some stunning accessories, a light, airy white bathroom with splashes of colour here and there is my perfect style.
Inviting:  I believe every room in a home should be inviting and whenever any guest enters it, immediately feels at home and inspired by the room. A bathroom is a perfect room to create a  calming and tranquil place, where everyone feels relaxed. 
And so began the pinning! I  loved the old fashioned style of this 'London' high level pan and cistern toilet, where I seem to remember a similar style at my infant school and would love one in my vintage bathroom.


The bath, oh this beautiful bath! *Drool. It took my fancy straight away, and I would indeed feel like quite the princess relaxing in this gorgeous free standing roll top bath.

Of course there has to be a pretty sink and this vintage style 'London' basin caught my eye.

When it came to flooring, I have always had these Cath Kidston vinyl tiles on my wish list and think a perfect match for my perfect bathroom look.

And who could resist a pretty bathrobe on the bathroom door...

Or some tongue and groove around the bathroom walls.


So, my pinterest board is coming along nicely and I am enjoying creating my perfect bathroom challenge mood board, just wish it was going to be the real thing. Oh well, a girl can dream, that's what pinterest is for ;)

Disclosure: C.P.Hart approached me to be involved in this design collaboration, and I have received payment for my time and input. All words and opinions my own.

Friday, 14 June 2013

Sea Life Manchester....

Over the half term holiday, the children and I were invited along to a preview event at Sea Life Manchester before it officially opened to the public. The little Poppins were eager to attend! It sounded a perfect family friendly event and I was a little excited too as growing up by the beach, I love all things sea related. Sea Life Manchester is the 14th Sea Life centre to open in the U.K. and features over 5000 sea creatures.

My little Poppins couldn't wait for the doors to open...


As there were quite a number of family bloggers and media peeps attending, there were little waits here and there, but things got moving quite quickly as we made our way around. If possible and convenient for your family, I would certainly consider leaving the pram at home/in the car as it did feel a little congested at times with all the buggies etc. I know Sea Life Manchester are going to be reviewing the pram situation and of course, not everyone shall have a pram with them on their outing, but was just something we noticed on the day.

Without wanting to give too much away, one of the first rooms we entered involved a great interactive talk about the centre, and featured a wonderful introduction to some delightful sea creatures. The children loved it! As we made our way around, you couldn't help but be amazed by the tanks, and there were even tanks that could be crawled under, making the little ones seem like they were swimming with the fish.

    
I loved the sharks and was mesmorised by their stillness. As you walk around, you can't help but get drawn into the underworld environment all these sea creatures live in. There is a touch screen by every tank and I really enjoyed reading about the species of fish/sea creature I was watching. Half way round you can actually get up close and have a little touch of the little creatures at the touch pool. Master Poppins had great fun gently holding the crabs, and there are sinks available nearby for everyone to wash their hands.  


Walking around you could see a soft play area and shop that were having their final touches given before the grand public opening, and you can even pre book your own Sea TREK which I have to say I don't think I'm quite that brave enough to do myself ;) So a very enjoyable family attraction and one definitely worth consideration, when it comes to fun days out!
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Disclosure: We were provided with complimentary entry to Sea Life Manchester for a preview tour for the purposes of this blog post. All words and opinions my own.       

Tuesday, 11 June 2013

HomeSense Store Grand Opening!....

We all know I love a good shopping expedition and when I found out a new HomeSense store was opening at The Arndale Centre in Manchester, and I was invited along, well, I had to pop along didn't I. HomeSense has long been a favourite place of mine to shop, and I have picked up many a bargain there in the past. I just love the shabby chic style treasures one can often find in there, and with up to 60% off the rrp, there are real savings to be had. The new Arndale store shall feature up to 50,000 items for the home, with daily deliveries bringing 10,000 new items of stock each week. This certainly offers customers something new each time they visit.

Being a Corrie fan, I was looking forward to meeting Antony Cotton, who was the special guest to open the store. He was a great sport when I asked for a little snapshot with him after he cut the ribbon!  


Once the ribbon was cut, in I went for a little moochy. I have to say I was like a little girl in a sweet shop. I couldn't resist heading over to see some of the Emma Bridgewater bedding, it really was lovely. And you can never have enough cushions can you ;) There were some great designs on offer. 


I loved reading this little flyer I picked up whilst walking around, top tips on how to shop HomeSense...

"Come over to ours this spring and find charming, unique homeware that you're likely to stumble across in a cool market or a tucked-away boutique but all for up to 60% less than the high street. HomeSense is a store where shopping is fun, and unexpected, where you might find the very thing you weren't looking for. Here's how to make the most of your shop"...

1. What's Our Secret?
We've got a dedicated team of buyers who hop on planes, scour the world for bargains and negogiate hard, so that you always get up to 60% off global homeware every day.

2. One Of A Kind
Just like our buying model, our stock is unique. If you see something you like, pick it up because there may not be another one. Once it's gone it really is gone.
 

3. Always Be Prepared
We get daily deliveries so you never know what gems your eagle eye will scout tomorrow. We love to see you, so pop by often.

4. Never A Dull Moment
We don't do 'matchy matchy' at HomeSense. We are particularly proud of our huge range of quality products from designer bed linen to hand made lanterns from Morocco.

5. Lets Be Friends
Come on over here and subscribe to our newsletter for more tips. You could win a £250 prize draw, and we'll tell you what's new first - scout's honour!  

Some great tips there, and I know I shall be popping back to the new HomeSense store again very soon. As mentioned you never quite know what you may find...

     
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Monday, 10 June 2013

Party Time At Chill Factore!....

We all love a party in the Poppins household and no one as much as Miss. Poppins!

When she was invited by Chill Factore to be the guest of honor at one of their fun snow Parties she couldn't wait to say yes and began to excitedly write out her invitations to some of her closest school friends. She was invited along to give a little review of what she thought it was like to have a party at Chill Factore and of course all her friends were to give their opinion too. As mum, I quietly observed but can let you know so much fun was had and I would definitely recommend considering holding your birthday party at Chill Factore.

  
There are various party packages on offer at Chill Factore, including different snow activities etc. Miss. Poppins party package included, hire of helmets and snow boots for all the children, 1 hour of tubing and food and drink afterwards. As she had not had a birthday party this time around, it was decided as well as an 'End of Sats' party for her and all of her friends, it would also be her belated birthday party. All her invited guests, 9 of them were as excited as she was about the upcoming event.

On arrival we were greeted by our friendly and efficient party host who explained thoroughly the plans for the party. She then accompanied everyone to the changing village, where the children changed into their pre picked snow boots and helmets. As soon as everyone was ready, our party host took us all onto the snow for their activity. Being the party host parents, both Mr. P and I were assigned the roles of  'Party Helper' and we were allowed on the snow to oversee the activity. Oh boy, they did have fun!!

  
Being mostly 10 and 11 year olds, the tubing was a perfect activity for them to do, fun, exhilarating, and they got to show their slightly competitive side as many a race was had between two friends. One down the new bumpy slope, and one down the straight but fast one. The two party hosts at the top of the snow hill, were great at pushing them down.

"Faster, faster" they all shouted and the party hosts really were fantastic with the excitable children. Health and safety was adhered to at all times, and felt 100% confident that all the children were in very safe hands. It can seem quite a long way up...

    
Of course Mr. Poppins had to try out the goods for himself, and you can just see him sneaking in at the back of the party crew on the walkway...


Even after an hour the children could have kept going, they really were having so much fun, but the mention of hot pizza and fries got them eager for something warm to eat. However, Miss. Poppins couldn't resist one last go!


Our party host took us back to the changing village to take our boots and helmets off, and then showed us the way to the restaurant for the food. The food was perfect ( I had to taste test of course) for a group of hungry pre-teens, and served by some super friendly staff. Ice cream for afters and a little birthday cake, made for a wonderful party, her guests all gave the thumbs up and many who hadn't been to Chill Factore before, were eager to go back another day and perhaps try out a new snow activity. I know we shall certainly be going back very soon for some more fun in the snow at Chill Factore!

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Disclosure: Miss. P and 9 guests received a complimentary party package, including one snow activity, helmet and boot hire and food and drinks for the purposes of this blog post. All words and opinions our own.