Orly’s big boy bedroom.

We loved Orly’s boat bed and nautical bedroom, it was super cute and made bedtime fun, but he is starting grade 1 at school this year and it was time for a change, something a little older, but still young and fresh.

Boat bed, Nautical bedroom, Kids room, Boys bedroom
ORLY’S BOAT BEDROOM

The first step was a big boy bed. We decided to move him into a Queen size bed for a few reasons … the most practical being that all three kids can share bed sheets, hopefully reducing the amount of bedding in my linen closet. The second being so we have more space for his friends to come for sleepovers and lastly, because rather than stepping up bed sizes gradually, this one should last him well into his teenage years.

I wanted something that was tough and hardy for my rough and tumble boy, but it also had to be stylish and fit with the aesthetic of our home. I chose the Dylan Queen Bed for its handsome traditional style with an industrial twist.

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The detail that I really fell in love with on this bed was the castors on the bed end legs. They are only there for decorative purposes, but are functional and make it easy to move the bed to collect the 357 single socks that seem to find their way under there!

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We still had a queen size mattress in storage from our last homes guest room, it was in good condition and had barely been slept on, but it was pretty hard and Orly wasn’t comfortable. I tried to do a mattress shuffle and swap with one of the girls but nobody liked it, maybe that’s why our guests never stayed long, ha!
Instead of splurging on a whole new mattress, we chose a SLEEPX mattress topper. It’s a great way to transform your mattress when you’re not quite ready for a new one. It’s made from memory foam and is super soft and luxurious.
We also got him some SLEEP X therapy pillows which are made in Australia from soft recovery foam, we chose the medium profile which is recommended for a side sleeper.

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The bed has a matte black finish and I wanted to warm it up with timber bedside tables. I was still hunting for them when the tables I ordered for Lucy’s room arrived, I got 2 x Hampton Bedside Tables.  I ‘temporarily’ popped them in Orly’s room, but they looked so good I decided to leave them there.
Sorry Lucy!
They are crafted from Mango wood in a traditional french design. I was originally thinking of something more industrial but I think these look so handsome and I’m really pleased with them.

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Also ordered for Lucy’s room, was this beautiful rug. Again, it looked so good I couldn’t possibly move it, so it’s living in Orly’s room now. The Skandi Rug is a flat weave kilim style rug and it’s handmade from a soft natural wool. I chose a grey/blue herringbone design. It’s a great rug for children’s spaces as the pattern does a great job hiding any accidents and it is also reversible.
Orly sits here and play with his toys for hours, it’s so much more comfortable that the hard wood floors.

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If you know me at all, you’ll know that I will probably change the bed linen a few times … I might be a little bit obsessed with textiles. For now, I couldn’t resist the Yarn-Dyed Nautical Stripe Quilt. It is such a classic design in a range of beautiful blues, it’s perfect for my home. It’s also timeless enough to ensure I won’t tire of it quickly and the simple stripes allows me to mix it with so many other patterns and colours.

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I’ve kept the decor fairly simple so far. The stripe has been carried over from his last bedroom design, while I would like to do something more exciting, it works for now and I have a list of other things that need doing (Lucy’s room) before I worry about it. I already had the oars stashed in my garage, I hung a few on the wall to enhance the seaside feel. The anchor mirror was also from his Boat Bedroom.

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I’m sure you’re all wondering about the Jumbo Teddy Bear on the bed too. Isn’t he adorable! Orly was having a little trouble adjusting to his big boy bed, along came Big Bear to save the day. He fills the empty space in the bed with a soft and cuddly presence and has been comforting for Orly at bedtime.
If you have a little one moving into a bigger bed, I highly recommend this tactic!

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The other change we made in Orly’s room to prepare him for school was to introduce a study area. I’m surprised at how much he uses this space and can only hope it continues throughout his school years.
We chose the Elliot Desk & Hutch for it’s cool corkboard and savvy storage, along with a swivel chair with a soft cushion seat for comfort.
You can find all the details of Orly’s study space here.

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I hope I’ve answered all your questions.
As always I’m happy to share where things are from or what I truly think of them, ask away!

Now, I better go and organise Lucy’s bedroom since Orly ended up with half her things.

Happy Shopping!

Hx

Disclosure : Some of these items were gifted to me, all of them were hand selected by me, all opinions are my own. Y’all know I don’t share things unless I love them, I love the quality and I love the brand.

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Get a headstart on homework.

My baby is starting grade one this year,
I have absolutely no idea where those years have gone?
I swear he was just learning to walk yesterday!

My girls are 16 and 17 years old and luckily for Orlando, he gets to benefit from the lessons I learnt with the girls.
One thing I have discovered is that I need to implement good study habits from a young age, trust me, I am not going through the homework headaches with another child!

When Pottery Barn Kids approached me to see if I’d like to create a study space for Orly, I thought they might have read my mind!
Um, YES!
Of course I’d like to give Orly a space of his own and of course I’d like to work with Pottery Barn Kids, my go-to favourite kids store!

I decided to put the desk in Orly’s room to start creating those good study habits NOW.
I know what you’re thinking – ‘Are you serious? You’re making your 7 year old study already?’
No, he’s not cramming for maths and geography just yet, but by making his desk a fun space to play and work, we hope that it becomes a place where he wants to spend time.

Creating a stylish study space with Mum Little Loves and Pottery Barn Kids.

I got Orly involved in creating this space right from the beginning.
We popped on to the Pottery Barn Kids website and looked at the desks and chairs together. We talked about options like colours, comfort and storage.
I found out pretty quickly that the things that were important to me, were not important to him, and vice versa. He wanted somewhere to display his artwork and Lego creations, while I wanted ample storage and a timeless style that would grow with him into his teenage years.
We chose the Elliot Desk and Hutch. It’s classic design, overhead cubbies, double drawers and fun corkboard ticked all the boxes and we both love it.

We already had the Madison 4-shelf Bookrack which is a great complimentary piece to use with the desk as it keep all his books within arms reach.

Creating a stylish study space with Mum Little Loves and Pottery Barn Kids.

When it came to the chair, he wanted a furry seat cushion and ‘a chair that spins like the teacups at Disneyland’, while I wanted something sturdy and safe.
The Carolina Swivel Chair was the perfect fit, it’s a little bit playful and very practical.

Creating a stylish study space with Mum Little Loves and Pottery Barn Kids.

Next on my list was lighting. I am an Optical Dispenser by trade, so I understand how important adequate lighting is. While reading and working in the dark will not cause permanent damage to your eyes, it may cause headaches and eye strain, these are completely avoidable by selecting the correct lighting such as the Solid Task Lighting with it’s directional gooseneck that can be angled to shine on their workspace.

Creating a stylish study space with Mum Little Loves and Pottery Barn Kids.

Also on my list was desktop storage for easy access and quick clean-ups. The Shaped Lazy Susan was a winner for both of us, the compartments keep his pencils and stationary organised, while the spinning star keeps him motivated to clean up.

Creating a stylish study space with Mum Little Loves and Pottery Barn Kids.

When the functional things were ticked off, I let Orly choose some comfort items to make him feel cosy at his desk.

Creating a stylish study space with Mum Little Loves and Pottery Barn Kids.
If you know Orly, you will know he has a obsession with soft textiles, he loves anything fluffy or super soft. He wanted a blanket to ‘wrap up like a burrito’ when he’s working. I think this might be a case of monkey see, monkey do! #guilty
We chose the Stripe Fur Throw with classic stripes on one side and faux fur on the other.
As you can see by that toothless smile, he absolutely loves it!

Creating a stylish study space with Mum Little Loves and Pottery Barn Kids.

Because I’m savouring every minute that he still wants to play with soft toys, I let him have this adorable west elm X PBK Bear to keep him company while he works.

Creating a stylish study space with Mum Little Loves and Pottery Barn Kids.

We also chose this fun Best Day Ever cushion for a pop of colour and positive reminder to make every day your ‘Best Day Ever’!

Creating a stylish study space with Mum Little Loves and Pottery Barn Kids.

When we had finished selecting our items, we placed our online order and awaited delivery.
A quick little tip here – the deluxe delivery service is worth every single cent.
The friendly delivery team brings the items to your home, assembles the furniture, places it where you want it AND takes away the rubbish. It was a little bit of luxury that was greatly appreciated in our busy life!

 Orly was so excited on the delivery day, he was dancing around the house like it was Christmas.
He didn’t waste any time in making it his with all his special things.
He loves the corkboard and carefully went through his art folders to find his favourite pieces to display. I love that we can keep it fresh with new artwork now, but it will also transition to a great memo board for him as he gets older. We used the cubbie holes for his favourite books and vacation mementoes and his big sister made the ORLY letters from Lego for him.

Creating a stylish study space with Mum Little Loves and Pottery Barn Kids.

He took great pleasure and pride in showing his space to both his sisters and instructing them that they had to ask him if they wanted to sit on his special chair. #siblinglove

He’s had it for a couple of weeks now and I am so pleased with the way he has been using it every day.
He plays with his Lego, does craft activities, colours-in and practices his writing. Not only does it keep this mess off my kitchen bench, but we are starting to develop those habits I was talking about … the study habits that I was hoping to implement. My first mission was to get him to use his desk, to sit and play or work independently and to enjoy it.
Mission accomplished!

Creating a stylish study space with Mum Little Loves and Pottery Barn Kids.

Now lets see if we can produce a doctor with those study skills, or a nurse, or a builder, or maybe an astronaut … whatever makes him happy, as long as he tries his best, oh gosh I sound like my mother!

If you want to create a study space for your children you can find loads of inspiration here.
Or pop in to your local Pottery Barn Kids store, the shop displays are always full of fabulous styling and ideas.

Happy Shopping!

Hayley x

Disclosure : Some of these pieces were gifted, all of them were hand selected by me, all opinions are my own. Y’all know I don’t share things unless I love them, love the quality and love the brand.

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Is your child getting their Forty Winks?

We’ve all heard the studies about how important sleep is. As adults we definitely notice our body slow down and our mood change if we have a few late nights, but what about our children?

The latest research says that adequate sleep can help children fight obesity, avoid colds, illness and increase their concentration at school. The studies suggest that sleep is essential to good health. Kids that get enough sleep have fewer learning problems and attention issues and when kids don’t get enough sleep it directly affects their mood and behaviour.

Last year we had so many problems with our youngest, Orlando. He’s 6 and due to our crazy lifestyle and hectic hours, he just wasn’t getting enough sleep. He had minimal self control and was constantly fidgeting at school. When the school teachers suggested his behaviour was not normal for his age, I started taking his terrible sleep routine more seriously. Wow, what a difference it made!

It’s obviously crucial to nurture their sleep habits, so how do we make sure our kids are getting what they need?

It’s not always easy, especially if your little one is a night owl or has trouble getting off to sleep.
There are definitely things you can do to help your children sleep. You can use lavender oil on the soles of their feet, you can limit their screen time, you can wear them out with sport activities and numerous other tactics. However, the most important tool to help your child have a good night sleep is to make them feel safe and happy in their bedroom.

Their bedroom should be their sanctuary, it should make your child feel comfortable and content, they should be surrounded by their special things and feel like their room reflects their personality. Kids love to be involved in the planning and decorating of their own space and by letting them help, they feel a sense of ownership and pride in their space.

So what do you need to create the perfect bedroom for your little one? Let’s start with the most important thing – the right bed.
Forty Winks have been the sleep experts for more than 30 years, they know beds and they can help guide you to the right one. The variety nowadays is vast and beds come in lot of sizes and styles. Consider the age and size of your child now, but also think of how much they will grow in 5 years and future proof your purchase by thinking ahead.

Before you decide on the bedroom furniture, have a good look at your child’s belongings, assess how much storage space he/she needs and how he/she will use their bedroom space. Does he/she need extra storage space for a large toy collection? Do you have teenager that needs somewhere to study? Do they have friends sleepover often where a trundle-bed or bunk bed would be handy? Do they have a small room that need to be multi-functional?

By simply choosing furniture that fits your needs and offers the right storage solutions you can create an organised and serene space.  Creating a place for everything helps your child to be neat and tidy and put their belongings away. Sleeping in chaos is not relaxing, having an organised space bring a sense of calm and makes it easier to relax.

Let’s have a look at some great furniture solutions for all your kids, from their first big bed, to shared spaces and the teenage years.

If you have a little bookworm, a bed like the Pluto would be perfect. It’s crafted from solid Victorian Ash and with its built-in shelves there is space for all your kids book right next to them in bed. It also has a trundle which is handy for sleepovers.

PLUTO / Forty Winks
PLUTO / Forty Winks

If your child shares a bedroom with a sibling or is simply a social butterfly who has lots of friends over frequently, the beautiful French style SNOW bunk bed might be the perfect option. It is a slanted design with a single bed on top and a double bed on the bottom, it also has a trundle for extra sleeping space.

SNOW | Forty Winks
SNOW | Forty Winks

If space is tight, the Quantum Loft bed packs a lot into its smart design. It only requires the floor space of a single bed, but it is a complete sleep / work / study / play solution. With a loft bed, desk and utility area, wardrobe storage and toy storage it really is the workhorse of kids’ beds!

QUANTUM | Forty Winks
QUANTUM | Forty Winks

The ODYSSEY is a great option for kids or teens. It has under bed storage and a ‘secret’ compartment in the bed head, perfect for stashing diaries and special things. This range has a fabulous range of matching storage solutions such as the 2-drawer bedside table, 4-drawer tallboy and study desk.

ODYSSEY | Forty Winks
ODYSSEY | Forty Winks

The ARC is a great choice for kids that don’t like the dark, it has a bookend bed head with built-in LED lighting so the kids can quickly and easily access the light without having to leave the safety of their bed. This king single sized bed also features a trundle and under bed drawers for extra storage.

ARC | Forty Winks
ARC | Forty Winks

As you can see, Forty Winks really do have you covered for all your children’s furniture needs.
Once you have determined your furniture you will need to choose a mattress. Take your child with you and let them lay on the mattresses and find what’s comfortable for them. Of course, you can be guided by the experts at Forty Winks, they will help you with the right fit for your space and budget. Keep in mind your child is growing fast and they will need the right support and comfort through these important growth years.

Bedlinen is also important, especially to some children who are sensitive to different textiles. Choose soft, warm and comforting layers that they can add or remove for their personal temperature control.

Lastly, finish with the decor. Ask them their favourite colour or talk about a theme for their room. We’re not talking about splashing Transformers or Barbie’s all over their room, choose a more subtle theme such as the ocean, the solar system or rainbows and unicorns.
If your child insists on a character theme, you don’t need to have licensed quilt covers and character cushions to get the look, think about the colours in that character and use them as your base to work from. For example, if your child chooses Mickey Mouse, you can work with red and yellow with a splash of black.
Personalise their space with family photos, framed art, baby mementos or special belongings. Give them a place to display their latest Lego creation or school art project.

Creating a bedroom with your child will give them a sense of ownership and make them want to spend time in there. Ultimately, that’s what we want, and that’s what will help them relax and sleep like a baby!

I’m happy to say, after making a few changes to Orlando’s bedroom like adding some comforting elements and removing some stimulating ones, he sleeps like a baby and is a much happier, calmer and attentive child.

Happy Shopping!

Hayley x

Disclosure: This post was written by me in partnership with Forty Winks. I only work with brands that I personally love and think you will too. Thanks for supporting that brands that help me keep Mum Little Loves alive.

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Seacova

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I recently heard somebody say that they couldn’t have coastal style in their home because they didn’t live by the ocean. I pondered this for quite some time, why … why if you love the ocean can’t you surround yourself with its treasures in your home? I don’t know what the fancy interior designers would say, but I say – go for it!
We live in Australia, we are surrounded by ocean, so adorn your home in shells and coral, splash the colours of the ocean on your walls and check out these gorgeous cushions …

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I have been dying to share these with you, it has killed me to keep them under wraps while we waited for all the stock to arrive!
I have a few in my own home and every single person who steps foot in my house has loved them, I even had one friend trying to smuggle some out in her handbag! You know who you are!

Introducing Seacova and the lovely face behind the brand, Clare.

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Seacova Coastal Interiors is the result of Clare’s love for the Australian coastline and the charm of American seaside cottages. It is a luxurious brand celebrating coastal living with a stunning range of cushions and furniture. These pieces are perfect for Australian living, with their coastal motifs and stunning colours straight from the depths of the ocean.

I absolutely fell in love with this range as soon as I saw it and knew it would be perfect for my new day bed. When it arrived I was even more excited, these cushions are even prettier in person. They are embroidered on 100% cotton, and piped in coordinating fabrics.

The Cape Cod collection in duck egg blue and sky blue is timeless, sophisticated and beautiful. Perfect for those of you who prefer a more gentle colour palette.

Cape Cod Collection.
Cape Cod Collection.

The Florida Keys collection is all about palm trees, sail boats and sea creatures in a crisp navy and white. It is classic coastal style and really makes a statement.

Florida Keys Collection.
Florida Keys Collection.

Also, don’t miss the outdoor collection of a faux bamboo sofa and chairs, they are powder coated aluminium and ideal for an Australian summer outdoors.

Alboo Bella seating.

 I was lucky enough to steal 1/2 an hour of Clare’s busy day to dig a little deeper and learn some more about Seacova …

Tell us a little bit about yourself?

I strapped my travelling boots on after college to explore Asia and Europe. My sister and I finished up living in London where we bunked on the floor of my aunt’s trendy Islington apartment for two whole years! I am grateful for the travel experience as it was character-building and opened up my mind up diversity.

Since then I have always lived close to the Australian seaside where I met my husband twelve years ago after re-locating to Brisbane. In the Spring of 2011 we were married on a tropical island in Fiji and now have two young children. Life is busy to say the least – our 7-month old girl and 3-year old boy certainly keep us on our toes!

 Is your background in something creative or is this a new venture for you?

 In 2010 I completed a degree in marketing at the Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane. From there I worked as a production manager in a graphic design studio followed by a management position at a boutique advertising agency in West End. Because we were part of a small team I was able to participate in developing strategies and brainstorming sessions with the qualified creative team members. I absolutely loved working with my colleagues: creative people are a hoot to be around.

 I was always passionate about interior decorating on the home front, and it was the coastal style that initially grabbed my attention. On weekends I spent hours looking through coffee-table books, shuffling various items around the house and scouting stores for new accessories. Eventually, my hubby actually banned me from buying any more shells or coral!

 As my passion for interiors continued to grow, I decided to take the leap and merge my work with that passion. Seacova became my creative outlet whereby I could develop coastal style interiors from the designing to the sourcing, managing suppliers, building websites and accounting. I could not have become a one-girl show without my previous job experiences and background.

It is clear the inspiration for your beautiful coastal-style cushion range comes from the ocean and seaside, was there something in particular that prompted the designs?  Do you design them all yourself?

I have been infatuated with American seaside cottages for as long as I can remember: front porches, white picket fences, french doors and light, bright rooms filled with shaker cabinetry…they stop my heart.

 My inspiration for the collection came largely from these coastal dwellings. I tried to picture complementary interiors that would create a soothing, relaxing space whilst using a colour palette inspired by the clear blue waters of the Australian coastline. In addition, some of the designs were derived from old ancient engravings I came across in my readings. The designs were created using Illustrator software, and then digitized for embroidery.

Embroidery detail of the Palm Tree cushion.
Embroidery detail of the Palm Tree cushion.

 The colour palette for your 2016/17 range is fresh and relaxed with soft blues, navy and white, then you have an unexpected pop of coral pink, where did this come from? 

 When it comes to colour, I am blue and white all the way, so naturally that dominated the collection. But there is definitely something to be said for a pop of colour. The seaside is largely blue and white on the surface, but underneath the water is a vibrant community of brightly coloured fish, plants and coral. The coral pink represents a hint of this vibrant underwater life. I was not sure about it in the beginning, now it is one of my favourites!

Pink Herringbone cushion.
Pink Herringbone cushion.

 Your collections are named after the famous seaside destinations of Cape Cod and Florida Keys. Have you been there or are they on the travel bucket list?

 I daydream about being there quite often, but have not travelled there as yet; it is definitely on the bucket list. When the children are a little older our plan is to hire an RV and drive all the way up the coast from Florida Keys to the Hamptons, Cape Cod and Nantucket.

Tell us about your own home and decor style? 

 My husband and I recently designed and built the family home. Yes, you guessed, the design was influenced by American architecture but also the attractive ‘Queenslander’. It is a hybrid of all the features we adore: a weatherboard construction with a front porch, exposed eves, french windows and shaker cabinetry. I would describe the style as classic coastal. As we had a limited budget, a lot of thought went into the design and how we could maximise our investment. Luckily, we had a fantastic builder who appreciated the character-build and was on-board with our vision. We are still finishing off a few elements. My husband, who loves to strap on the tool belt on weekends, has built a shed to match the house and is currently working on the white picket fence!

Clare's House!
Clare’s House!

 What does the future hold for Seacova?

 I hope to expand Seacova by developing more design elements and bringing more collections to the market. The internet certainly helps small businesses achieve that these days. I have also been working on some custom statement pieces. Here’s a sneak peek at the Hampton’s wing-back chair and matching ottoman that has just been introduced to the market.

Hamptons chair and ottoman.
Hamptons wingback chair and ottoman.

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I know you’re all itching to grab your credit card and start shopping, but before you go I just want to show you how gorgeous the cushions look in my home. Sometimes you see these beautifully styled images and wonder what they actually look like, just hanging out, like cushions do, in an everyday persons home.
They are so good!

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Aren’t they gorgeous!

Happy Shopping! #sorry #notsorry

Hayley x

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