Wednesday, 23 November 2016

Monki Business

So Monki has been a brand name that I've been hearing around for a little while now. They aren't a brand that cater to plus sizes so as a middle range fat (24-26), rather than a smaller fat, I was sceptical that they would be a brand that I could purchase from. However, after seeing a selection of fellow bloggers, all a similar size to me, raving about Monki, I decided it was time to take the plunge and I am so glad that I did!!

 
 
 

Jacket - Old Elvi, Dress - Monki, Shoes - Simply Be, Socks - Topshop, Scarf - Next (Men's range), Leggings - Yours Clothing Bump It Up Maternity.

THIS DRESS IS SO WONDERFUL!!!! I was told that most Monki items in a size L and listed as oversized would fit my size 24-26 frame. Like I said, I was sceptical, but I had no reason to be. This high neck, midi dress in a super soft jersey is PERFECT. Honestly, the sizing is actually better than a lot of items I own that are specifically designed for plus sizes. It does go to show that sometimes risking it with a 'straight size' brand is more than worth it. The jersey is super soft and super stretchy, the midi length is something I adore and the three quarter length sleeves are ace. There is a slight bat wing feel to the sleeves which i know some people don't enjoy, but it fits this dress perfectly. There are several oversized L options on the Monki website and on the ASOS website that I will absolutely be trying over time, when funds are permitting. Something else i love about Monki is that their pricing is very reasonable for what you get. This dress was only £25, which is a bargain really! 

My only TINY TINY criticism is that the material doesn't wash all that well, I've washed it twice and there is a very slight bobbling in some areas, however as the price is great, this isn't really a massive issue at all.  

So if you're a mid range fat and wondering about the possibility of Monki, try it! Be brave! Make sure you choose a size L and items listed as oversized and you'll be totally fine.

Lots Of Love,
KLJ x

Thursday, 17 November 2016

The P Word

So after nearly 11 weeks of being a Mum, I've decided to finally talk about this. Post Natal Depression.

 

From around 2 weeks after Eli I was born, I started suffering. Really suffering. But I think there are a great deal of misconseptions when it comes to postnatal depression. It isn't always feelings of wanting to harm your baby or worrying you might - it's a HUGE spectrum of things and a HUGE spectrum of feelings. 

In reality, I had a fairly traumatic birth due to it ending in an emergency C Section, but when you have a new baby you can't afford to dwell on that and feel sorry for yourself, you have to just pick yourself up and get on with it. Mulling over the details and only focusing on the bad things will not help anyone. However, that being said, I do believe that how immobile I was for the first week of Eli's life did not help. I became incredibly frustrated, felt completely useless as all I could do was feed him and cried endlessly because of this. With Eli himself, I had no issues, I loved him more than anything in the world from the very beginning and have never felt any ill feeling to him (other than oh lord please stop crying after he's been going for 3 hours). All the ill feeling was within myself. 

 

As time went on I felt more and more insecure, self conscious, like Chris would run off with someone else and leave me, like a terrible mother, like I couldn't even find 5 minutes to have to myself (which is untrue, I was putting undue pressure on myself for the house to be perfect too, so spent all my 'free' time doing that), like my body was bizarre and not my own, like if Eli keeps crying I am absolutely going to have a nervous breakdown, like I'm completely alone in the world and like I just want to curl up in a ball and cry. Which I did, a lot.

It's really hard to find the right words to explain how desperate I felt. I can't say I was suicidal because thankfully, it didn't get that far, I just felt so wrapped up in misery within myself that I couldn't see a way out. Eli is thriving and developing very quickly, he is reaching his milestones early and putting on weight like a trooper. Most of the time he is an incredibly content baby and will go to anyone but like I said, the issue was never with him or my feelings towards him, it was very much with me.

Chris was and still is incredible. He is so supportive and loving but even he was very worried about me and how I wasn't coping. He would desperately plead with me to speak to my mental health midwife or my Mum, or anyone, but I refused because being a Mum with mental health problem already, determined not to 'fail' and get put back on my medication meant I was not only in this post natal hole but also RIDICULOUSLY stubborn about the subject. 

 

Writing this post is so hard because it's really difficult to put my feelings into a cohesive timeline as such, so I do apologise if it feels chaotic to read and makes no sense! To the outside world and visitors I'm sure I seemed fine. I'd whack makeup on and a big old smile but as soon as they left I'd be a vacant, distant, tearful mess. I am very aware that 99% of new Mums and Dads feel very overwhelmed with a new baby and being tearful is very much a part of it, but this was way more than that. I didn't know who I was, I had no confidence left, I didn't know how Chris still loved me, I didn't know how I would ever feel good about myself again, I didn't want to see anyone but then I desperately didn't want to be on my own, I didn't want to be away from Eli but then I felt I couldn't cope with being with him all the time - i was a mess. 

It didn't help that I had a lot of problems with the healing of my C Section scar. Two infections, two courses of antibiotics, an open hole etc etc, it felt never ending which only added to my misery as I was still constantly having to 'be careful' with what I did physically. 

I felt as if all the old insecurities I had as a teenager had come back, I didn't know how Chris could find me attractive, I hated how I looked, I thought everyone else hated me and couldn't be bothered with me, I felt endlessly guilty that these thoughts were consuming me when I had a new baby, I was OBSESSIVELY worried about the fact I wasn't healing well and the list went on and on and on. But i was very aware that this was not to do with my Bipolar. It was an entirely different feeling all together and it went on for weeks and weeks and weeks and I felt this black cloud would never lift.


As lame and cheesy as this sounds, it was in reading Adele's Vanity Fair interview in which she addressed her post natal depression that made me realise I needed to stop pretending I was fine. I read this and cried, cried to myself and cried to Chris and told him how sorry I was that I had refused to speak to anyone. In the coming days I finally opened up and spoke to my Mum about it. As always, she was absolutely wonderful (and had been through my entire pregnancy, labour and since Eli was born) and encouraged me to speak to my mental health midwife. 

 

Now I haven't spoken to my mental health midwife yet and I was beginning to feel a lot better and coping a lot more but then my C Section wound reopened. This only happened a few days ago and it felt like a huge set back, like my healing was never happening. For the next few days I felt like everything was hopeless again but thankfully, it seemed to really heal properly my wound needed to reopen and now it's slowly healing a lot better. I will be speaking to my mental health midwife but I need to work up to that as I am still struggling to accept that doing so is not 'a failure'. 


I have the most beautiful, clever little boy whom I adore, I have a loving gorgeous supportive husband, a wonderful family and friends and as hard as it is to see sometimes, I will be fine and I will find myself again away from this cloud. But I don't think it will be who I was, it will be a new self, a different self and that's really ok. All new Mummy's NEED to remember to take time for themselves, even if it's just an hour a week, whether it's having a good nap or taking yourself out for coffee and there is absolutely no reason to feel guilty about that, ever. 

If you're struggling, please speak to someone. Anyone. Vent, unload, clear your head. It's terribly hard but so worth it and the more we all talk about postnatal depression, the easier future Mums will find it to open up. It is NOTHING to be ashamed of. You are a wonderful Mother, your child adores you unconditionally and you need to feel the same way about yourself - whether your baby is 2 weeks or 2 years old. Be brave and honest. 

Lots Of Love,
KLJ x

Thursday, 10 November 2016

Frezyderm Mother & Baby

So this is something different for me, a skincare review! As some of ya'll may know, I have been really struggling with my skin since Eli was born, it has been sore and red and my rosacea has really been acting up! So when I was offered the chance to review a new skincare brand for mother & baby, I jumped at it!

 

Frezyderm is a Greek skincare brand that has just reached the UK! Their products are designed to be soothing and gentle on your skin and this really is what I've found!

 

Firstly, the cream for me! I have HORRIBLY sensitive skin. I really, really struggle to find effective cream to combat all the current issues I'm struggling with that I won't have a reaction too. Since Eli was born my rosacea has been quite severe and I have developed a mild case of excema on my face, back and hands. I must be honest, I was slightly dubious that I'd be able to use this cream as 90% of the time, I have reactions to skincare - my skin will flare up, be red and painful and my eyes will swell and itch. This cream however, has been a miracle. I know it sounds OTT but literally from my first application, my skin has felt calmed and repaired. I've found all three of these creams smell very similar. They have a beautiful soft but prominent chamomile scent, that really is very pleasant and not overpowering. My rosacea has calmed down, my cheeks once again feel soft again and not rough and dry. I've been applying it once a day after a shower for the past few days and I cannot hope enough that it continues to improve my skin on a daily basis. It's not overly oily or greasy and it melts into your skin wonderfully. I cannot recommend it enough if you have sensitive skin, rosacea, excema prone skin or generally skin that's easily aggrevated.

 

This is Frezyderms most popular product and is a general purpose baby cream, that's useable on all the family! As a first time Mum, I have been reluctant to put too many creams etc on Eli's skin as I have been concerned he will follow me and have sensitive skin so I've tried to use the gentlest products possible when I have used any. This cream is great! Luckily Eli RARELY suffers from nappy rash at all however he does have very, very mild baby acne. So I popped a tiny bit of this cream on his cheeks and the redness has lessened noticeably and no additional spots have popped up as yet! It's not a runny moisturiser, it's a slightly denser, more Bepanthen-esque texture so a little goes a long way. I haven't tried it myself but I can imagine this cream would be great for chaffing which as a fat girl, is a very real concern haha!

 

This is the third product I was sent and honestly, I don't see a great deal of difference between this and the general baby cream. It's a great cream again, with a lovely pleasant smell and multi purpose uses! It's gentle on the skin and doesn't feel greasy or heavy once rubbed in. As they are both so similar, it's handy to keep one at home and throw one in the changing bag for all your cream based needs out and about!

I'm always cautious about trying new skincare, as I've said, because my skin is so temporamental! But I cannot recommend these creams enough, especially the one specifically for me. Frezyderm is available in the U.K now!

Lots Of Love,
KLJ x

Thursday, 3 November 2016

ASOS Curve Winter Wishlist

So I very rarely do wishlists but, despite their social media faux pas' of the past few months, ASOS Curve (and the brands they stock) are owning the Winter fashion game at the moment, so I had to highlight a few of my favourites for ya'll!

 

Velvet Skater Dress - Alice & You - £45 (also available in black).

This dress is the dress of my dreams, specially in this colour. Velvet, long sleeves, midi and pleats! Glorious! Alice & You have been producing so absolutely corking dresses of late and this is yet another beauty that I must own!

 

Metallic Top - Newlook Inspire - £17.99.

I LOVE metallic's, especially in gold. I find a lot of metallic pieces tend to come in silver, rather than gold, so when I find a gold item, I need it! The slight dipped hem is great and the length of the sleeves are perfect. This could be worn in any smart or casual situation, depending what you team it with! Fabulous!


Khaki Plisse Skirt - Alice & You - £30.

Plisse is such a huge trend right now and I love the great, simple line of this skirt. It is a great length, a very on trend colour and looks super comfortable. The way this has been styled here is perfect, the Western feel belt and plain khaki top is killer, add a simple bomber and voila! 


Pleated Satin Skirt - ASOS Curve - £35.

I have been lusting after this skirt for SO long. Everything about it is absolutely flawless. The colour is super unusual for a metallic piece which I adore and there is nothing more perfect than a midi, pleated skirt. I would love to team this with the Mustard sweater I just got, also from ASOS Curve, for the perfect Winter look.

 

Plush Faux Fur Coat - ASOS Curve - £85.

Every year I try to invest in a new Faux Fur coat because they are always a staple of my winter. This beauty is absolutely heavenly. The unusual colour is divine and adds such a fresh touch to fur. I really think that this colour is a colour brands don't use enough, it's so beautiful and classy. This coat will be mine!

Lots Of Love,
KLJ x
 

Wednesday, 2 November 2016

Lovedrobe Love

I am so thankful to have found these BEAUTIFUL pieces I was sent forever ago by the wonderful Lovedrobe team! I was pregnant when I was originally sent the key pieces from this outfit and sadly could not find the time to blog them but now they are PERFECT for this Winter & have made amazing editions to my current wardrobe rotation!

 
 
 

Wrap, Top & Skirt - Lovedrobe, Tights - Evans, Shoes - Primark.

This outfit is utter perfection for me. The Autumnal hues, the soft, varied fabrics, the saucy bit of pleather and the edgy extra of tassels. I adore it. This skirt is so soft and comfortable, it doesn't crease and the waist band is nice and thick meaning it doesn't slip or slide and remains in the exact spot you want it. The gorgeous burgundy top is a very fine knit so it keeps you at a perfect temperature and the gold zip is a great detail that just helps the top become super versatile for smart of casual occasions (and it doesn't rub your skin as sometimes zip detailing can). Now, this wrap is a real leap for me. I have an unbridalled hatred of poncho's, I think they are hideous however wraps, I can get behind. This is so easy to wear and can be thrown on over any outfit with ease. The pleather and tassel detailing lift the piece and make it way more interesting than the standard soft, cosy wrap. It keeps you warm, without making you feel restricted and sweaty - which is a real issue for me when wearing coats, I feel too limited by them, so this is a great compromise!

 

As I said in my previous post, Primark are providing some seriously great Winter footwear right now! These are from the Wide Fit range and although I would say definitely try them on if you so have very wide feet as I don't and they fit snugly, I would still highly recommend them. The suede effect goes perfectly with the suede effect of the wrap and I ADORE the gold tie detailing. It makes all the difference and takes them from an average pair of black slip ons, to a real statement piece! (Please excuse my wrinkly/fluffy tights, I rarely get time to arrange myself as I would like these days haha).

Lots Of Love,
KLJ x

Colonel Mustard

IT IS NOVEMBERRRR! I've said it before and I'll say it again, cold, Winter weather makes me so happy. What makes me even happier is finding the perfect knitwear to keep me warm during said weather! 

 
 
 

Jumper - ASOS Curve, Shirt Dress - ASOS Curve, Leggings - Yours Clothing Bump It Up, Shoes - Primark.

This jumper is the knitwear of dreams. The colour, the quality, the fit - EVERYTHING. It's a heavy, thick wool knit and the high neck is glorious - it's high enough to look good but not too high that it irritates my face, which I have found can happen with some higher necklines. It is a generous size so I would say you could even size down if you were looking for a more fitted finish, but I bought mine in my general size and its exactly what I wanted. It's so great to throw on over 99% of my wardrobe, which as a new Mum, is so handy as I don't have anywhere near the time I used to to plan my outfits haha.

 

Primary are absolutely killing it in the shoe department right now. These beauties are £10 and from the wide fit section. I would say that if you do have very wide feet, the fit may not be great because I don't have especially wide feet and the fit on these is great, but other than that, I cannot recommend them enough! I adore black patent shoes and the tiny heel makes me feel fabulous, as I am terrible in any heel even remotely bigger than this haha. I also really love the unusual square toe! I tend to choose pointier shoes normally but i feel teamed with the black patent and small chunky heel, this square toe gives a great, classy finish to the shoe! 

It's so nice to be getting back into blogging. Yes, with our little Bun, it is harder to find the time to dedicate to it regularly, but the time I can spend doing it is a great outlet and is helping me feel like me again!

To finish, have a picture of our beautiful Eli, who is now 8 weeks old and such a strong, clever, wonderful little human being (note his sweet Halloween outfit haha).

 

Lots Of Love,
KLJ x