Get your pinny on!

Cath Kidston Heart-shaped pinniesThey’ve done it again. The clever design team at Cath Kidston has come up with a limited edition pinny (and online exclusive) those of us with a retro weakeness won’t be able to resist: the Heart-shaped pinny with heart pockets (£16 each). Choose from three vintage-inspired fabrics (our fave? The Mini Cowboy, pictured bottom, but the Red and white spot and Little rose are lovely, too). Order now, while stocks last, at cathkidston.com.

Meanwhile, want a great excuse to get your ‘baking princess’ pinny on? Put the oven on for an amazing cause by getting involved with Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH)’s Bake it Better fundraiser for 2011, happening throughout February. This year’s appeal will raise money to help fund the training and employment of clinical research nurses at the hospital.

Nonstopmama will be covering more on Bake It Better over the coming weeks, but, for now, find out more, register for celebrity recipes and get a fundraising pack here.

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Colin Firth’s wife Olivia steps out!

Livia and Colin FirthOooh, love a pair of wedges. Cork, wood or espadrille-style, they’re the only kind of heel we can step out in with (more or less) confidence that we won’t come a cropper. And this gorgeous pair, sported by Livia Firth for the recent unveiling of her husband Colin Firth’s star on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame, shows how fab they can look, teamed with a pair of simple black trousers or jeans. It’s the perfect, lift-your-spirits nod to spring right now (on sunnier days!), while bare legs seem a long way off (watch this space for my top tips on spring foot buffing!)

Rizieri Maty shoeAs befits the Creative Director of Eco Age, Livia’s ‘Maty’ shoes are designed by Riccardo Rizieri Broglia from sustainable materials (read about Livia’s ‘Green Carpet Challenge’ at her blog for British Vogue). The leather is dyed with vegetable dyes by a producer who, like the designer, is a member of C.L.A.S.S., a global organisation working to support manufacturers involved in the creative use of sustainable textiles. Talk about eco-chic!

 

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Hot flicks and spring walks …

It’s the weekend – yippee! – so what better time to suggest a couple of ideas for fun days (or half days) out?

On Saturday mornings, participating Cineworld cinemas (about 67 across the country) are running Movies for Juniors - a chance to catch a film together and enjoy a range of craft activities beforehand for just £1 a ticket (per adult or child). Movies change from week to week and also by site, so check the Cineworld website for details.

From big screens to wide open spaces, the National Trust suggests taking a seasonal ‘snowdrop walk’. ‘There’s something magical about a walk in the gardens when the snowdrops are in full bloom,’ says Mike Calnan, Head of Gardens at the National Trust. ‘It’s a sure sign that spring is on its way’.

To help you choose your location, the National Trust has given nonstopmama its top 10 ‘best spots to see snowdrops’ throughout January and February: Read more.

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Robot pizza, anyone?

Sometimes, the simplest ideas are the best. We’re all for making food more appealing to smaller, fussier eaters, especially when ‘tada!’-worthy transformations involve minimal ‘faffing’!

Here’s one for giving homemade pizzas a cute spin: make ‘favourite shape’ mini pizzas using a cookie cutter. Cut out the dough (almost every family cookbook includes a recipe, but the one in Delia Smith’s How To Cook, Book One is fast, easy and foolproof), top with tomato sauce, grated cheese and whatever topping you have to hand (try using olives or sweetcorn niblets for buttons on a gingerbread man, or as rocket windows!).

Nonstopmama particularly likes the Kitchen Craft range of cookie cutters made especially for little hands to handle, so you can involve the children (if time allows!), as safely as possible, in the prep.

It’s a great idea for parties, too – pick a shape to fit your theme!

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more glamour from the Globes!

Back on Monday, we talked about actress Olivia Wards’ ‘au naturel’ make-up at the Golden Globe Awards, created using Nars products. Today, we’ve got the scoop on some other hot-off-the-red-carpet, achievably understated looks for hair and nails and the products used. Think ‘do try this at home’ (if not, perhaps, for the school run …).

First up, Amy Adams’ loose-but-glam up-do was created by hair stylist Laini Reeves using Moroccanoil haircare range (photo above, by Getty Images). Laini used the Hydrating Styling Cream to provide extra hold, definition and shine. ‘I rough-dried the hair with my hands to get the water out,’ she explains. ‘Then I created a bit of messed-up texture, with a slight touch of wave, for a more modern, freer look’. Read more.

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    Jenni Baden HowardA daily one-stop bloggy shot of busy mama beauty, fashion, fitness, food and family, edited by Jenni Baden Howard. More.

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