Hi friends! Thanks for your patience in me getting this out to you. Obviously, cuddling with the boys took precedence last week and then I realized I only had a little bit of time left to do quite a bit of continuing education for my nursing license renewal so I’ve had to table a lot of my usual workload. So, this is the Friday Five on a Saturday, ha! Hope you guys are well! Enjoy this months’ Friday Five!
5 Summer Trends I’m Loving Right Now
To be honest, I feel a bit behind on trends this year. Or maybe behind isn’t the best word, but I guess I’ve been less into trends than I have in years past. I’ve been so much more focused on what I’m actually going to pick up and wear around the house because, here in the UK, even though things are opening up slowly … we still spend SO much time at home. It feels good, though. Instead of trying out a ton of trends, I’m really focusing in on a few to incorporate into my wardrobe – among the basics that I’ve been reaching for non-stop during this season of life. Here are the trends I’m into!
This is actually a pretty new-to-me trend that I’ve embraced very quickly! I love the detail that sunglass chains can add and honestly, they are so effective! I’m into pearl-detailed options or dainty gold chains.
PAPER BAG SHORTS & PANTS
Let’s be honest, here. I’ve loved this ‘trend’ for years now [proof]. It’s such a chic tack on pants and shorts. Don’t get me wrong, I’ll always love a good pair of denim or a skirt in the summer, but it’s been nice throwing in this elevated and slightly masculine option, especially like a linen option for summer.
This is a trend I’ve kinda always been into honestly! It’s very frilly, very girly, very dramatic and I kinda love all of that 🙂 I appreciate that the new wave of puff sleeves lack quite as much drama as the options in the ’80s and I personally like a delicate puff.
Ah yeah, this is probably my most-worn trend of the summer [well, it’s a tie with the next trend below]. Babydoll dresses are undeniably comfortable and they definitely feel light and breezy for summer. It’s another girly pick that I’m drawn to but I also love the effortless and maxi options that some of these dresses give.
LONGER HEM SHORTS
Totally love this one! Kinda like the paper-bag style, this trend adds a chicness that we haven’t seen in recent years. Longer hems obviously provide more coverage than the cutoff versions and I like the mature feel. Find my full breakdown of this trend right here!
5 Best Products That Maximize Storage & Organization
I actually tackled a similar question, 5 Organizational Must-Have’s Around The House, in an early Friday Five but since I have had to move into smaller spaces / maximize my space since then, I thought I would go at this question from that mindset. While John and I are moved into a bigger space than we were in, it’s still smaller to my space in Florida. Not to mention I’m sharing more space 🙂 Here are items that have helped me maximize space personally:
** NOTE: I couldn’t create a widget with all of these products within it because some of the retailers aren’t associated with rewardStyle so be sure to click the text links to see all of the products I’m recommending for this one! **
• STACKABLE FOOD STORAGE: We haven’t used these personally because our cabinets aren’t tall enough but, if yours are, they’d be so handy to – again – create more storage by going UP.
• NARROW VERTICAL DRESSER STORAGE: This narrow organizer unit could be super easy to store ANYWHERE if you’re in a small space and, because it gives you vertical height, you will be able to store so many little odds and ends in here that typically end up in random places.
• ACRYLIC STORAGE BOXES: I’m going to cheat and provide a similar option to one I already suggested in the Friday Five I mentioned above and that’s acrylic storage boxes. That’s because they truly are such a helpful piece to store jewelry, makeup, or skincare products when you’re in a small space. There are so many out there that can accommodate your space and storage needs.
• WIRE KITCHEN ORGANIZER: We all have a couple of those large kitchen cabinets that has so much height and you end up putting pots and pans in them and wasting a lot of the space because everything is sitting horizontally that could be sitting vertically with THIS product.
I hope these were helpful for those of you trying to maximize storage and organization in small spaces! I’m right there with you and will continue to share new ones I find!
John’s birthday is next week and I’ve been thinking about what would be the absolute best gift for him. As most of y’all know, John was a chef for years and loves cooking so much. Since living in the flat in Fleet, he hasn’t been able to invest in a grill. He loves the Egg after hearing my Dad and my friend, Misty’s husband, Brian, talk about how great it is. So, I got him the Egg as well as a MEATER Wireless Meat Thermometer. I can’t wait to see what he thinks! [P.S. He doesn’t read the blog so I know this won’t be spoiled at all, hah!]
Our kitchen counter-tops are wood so we are looking in to what might be the best in terms of keeping them looking their best. We figured it be best to not set our dishes to the side for them to air dry [we do have a dishwasher but we don’t put large pans and stuff in there so they air dry]. We also have a farm house sink, unlike a lot of places here. Most places have a sink with a built in drying station next to it. We figured one of these roll-up dish drying rack’s would be the best for us as we can spread it out over the sink and let excess water fall into the sink versus the wood countertops. We’re loving it so far!
These round hyacinth placemats are so great as a base for a place setting during the Summer months. I have these saved at the moment because we kind of need a patio table before I pull the trigger on these. Because we’re in the thick of Summer, there aren’t as many options for cute patio furniture at the moment so yeah, I might not snag them now but thought I’d share something I had my eye on In case I do find the perfect table that will come In soon. Here are some other options in case the one I linked sells out.
Since the move, I have been terribly inconsistent at taking my daily vitamins so I think I need a little something to help me. A cute pillbox was what made snese in my mind. I’d fill it up on Sundays for the week and then put it in my bathroom to take them first thing in the AM. I don’t think I can snag this one in particular on Amazon UK but it’s what I’d choose if I was still in the US. It’s so cute!
I’ve been wanting to try one of these after trying a silicone face scrubber when washing my face at night. They work so well and, after thinking about how much bacteria probably lives on a plastic loofah, I thought this might be a cleanlier option. Have you tried one? Would love to know if they work as well as traditional loofah’s or if they aren’t worth it! Leave your feedback below. This one is under $10!
5 Things Your New Place Has That Your Old Flat Didn’t
I realize I haven’t really shown y’all around the new place yet and, I promise, that’ll make more sense in time. But, there are quite a few things that our new place has that our place in Fleet did not, such as …
• CHARMING FEATURES: I’m not exactly sure when our place was built but, although it’s been modernized in some ways, I absolutely love that it still includes a lot of very charming features that seem to have been around for a long time, like the fireplace you see above and the crown molding. A lot of original fireplaces are filled in or updated to a more modern one but I absolutely love that ours is very rustic and functional!
• MORE SPACE: Our place in Fleet was about 600-650 sq ft and, after a very strict and long lockdown, I started to really feel ‘off’. It wore on my mental health to be in a small place with no outdoor space after awhile and, while I am beyond thankful for a safe place to live, it underlined some of my personal needs. In London, space is hard to come by. I learned quickly that it’s important to pay attention to the square footage. Aside from our two non-negotiable’s [outdoor space and parking], square footage was always the first thing I looked at on listings then the price. It’s so easy to see how modern and beautiful some places look that are within your budget in London and then you see you’re literally paying way more to have the same amount of space. So, finding this place was a breathe of fresh air because it has 1150 sq ft along with higher ceilings than most places we found [it’s the entire first floor of a large home] and we were able to stay within our budget. There are, of course, trade-off’s for this. You’ll never find a place that has EVERYTHING you want [for example, one of ours is that we don’t ‘LOVE’ the neighborhood we’re closest to for different reasons; the area we’re in is literally one you’d never guess .. I had never heard of it before] but, since both of us work from home mostly … we weighed all of the pro’s of the home over the neighborhood vibe. We are within a 15-minute walk to other neighborhoods we DO love so really … we’re very happy about that. [p.s. i’ve shared before that we moved to northwest London and I’ll probably tag places that i’ll mention are in our neighborhood but it’ll likely be different neighborhoods in the area that we are near but I’ll never actually share the area we live in for safety and privacy, of course].
• OUTDOOR AREA: Outdoor space was something we just HAD to have for the boys. It was a non-negotiable. I have only ever lived in multi-level places since I’ve had them so, I was personally really ready to have a place where I could literally get up in the morning then go to the back door and let them out to do their business. I did not expect to find a place that literally had everything on one floor but, we did, and it’s been the biggest blessing … as well as finding a landlord that is so open to them being here and putting faux grass down in the garden for them. It’s incredibly kind and I am so thankful for that.
• CLOSE PROXIMITY TO PUBLIC TRANSPORT: This was something I wanted but didn’t hold my breath for. I just told myself … if we find something that is close to tube access, great! I’m sure John and I will eventually settle down outside of London and have train access to London, like we did in Fleet, and I really wanted to enjoy our first couple of years here together in London with access to the tube. We got so lucky with this place … it’s 0.2 mi to the nearest tube station. It takes me about 7 minutes or so to walk there, which is a dream!
• STORAGE: Y’all … storage is just something I NEED with what I do. However, the properties in the UK typically come with very, very little storage space. You can easily find new build apartments with absolutely no closet in the bedrooms. It’s so bizarre to me. I understand if the building is old because, hello .. this city is SUPER old and times have changed but when it’s a new build, I can’t help but scratch my head. So, anyway, when I was looking … storage was another thing I was thinking about. This place has two open and closed shelving units on either side of the fireplace, which will be so helpful for little knick-knacks like candles, holiday decor, vases, and other things. The bedrooms have bay windows with storage underneath each one with a seat and the main bedroom has three massive built in wardrobes. We also have a coat closet and a linen closet, which is actually unheard of – at least in the places I saw within our budget during our search.
We literally feel like we hit the jackpot with this place. We absolutely love it and I promise, I’ll show you guys more very soon!
5 Things You Bought for Your New Home
We haven’t really made a lot of progress with the things we need to fill certain aspects of our new house so I’ll just list out what is on the agenda to start searching for! I spoke a little bit about some of the home trends I’m seeing that will be inspiring my choices so be sure to check that out HERE!
• KITCHEN TABLE: We ended up moving our kitchen table into the new place and our tenant in Fleet requested that she have it moved back because it’d be helpful for her to have it. We would really like to find one that suits our new space more so we are going to accommodate that request and will be looking for a more ‘farm house’ style kitchen table that is a little on the ‘thin’ side because I’d also love to add a wood shelf behind the couch for additional storage. But, we’ll see what we find!
• COFFEE TABLE: The coffee table in our old place was perfect because it was small and suited the space. We have a little more space now and, actually, our wood floors matches the coffee table to the point that it almost looks camouflaged, ha! So, we’re going to find a rug for this space that lightens it up a bit as well as a coffee table that has wood details but a light top, preferably marble – shocking!
• ENTRYWAY SIDEBOARD: We have a beautiful entryway space but not a lot of wall space since it’s also the hallway that leads to our room and the second bedroom, which is being used – again – as a closet office. But, I want to use the little bit that we have as you first come in to serve as a place where we can store books, candles, etc. in its drawers as well as put a lamp, a picture frame and candle, and a cute catch-all for us to drop our keys or spare change.
• DESK: We desperately need a desk in our second bedroom. John is currently using the window seat, ha! I want to get upholstered seats there to make the space look more complete. I’d love to put a long desk in front of the bay window [I’m thinking white] with a colorful rug underneath that compliments the peachy-toned curtains … so, that’s my vision but, yeah, haven’t even started looking. Any suggestions?
• ENTRYWAY RUG: Ha, I shared a week or two ago that John LOVES his cowhide rug and wants to keep it in our entryway rug. Many of y’all were very passionate about me letting John keep it but, please don’t pin me as the bad guy! ha! I love the rug. I think it’s beautiful BUT … I don’t feel like it suits the home we’re in nor the place we have it right now lol. We need a pretty long and wide runner, technically. I’d really love to pick out all of these new pieces WITH John so it’s not like either of us are settling on what we have in our home. And, plus … he loves the couch and the bed … those were two things he picked out before we met and, while they’re not my favorite … I’m happy to not fuss about because he loves them so much so just know that John does have things around the house that he very much loves, hah! I’m not dominating the home decorating venture, promise!
Here is some of the inspo pieces I’ve bookmarked recently. Where is your favorite place to shop for home decor?
Alright, y’all! My hands are about to fall off so I’m going to leave you now but I do hope you enjoyed this months’ Friday Five! Next month, we have Nordstrom Anniversary Sale on the horizon so leave me any Friday Five August category suggestions below! Thanks, guys! Have a good weekend! xo.