Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Entertaining Outdoors: Ideas to Create the WOW Factor

{Sponsored Post}
 
Can you imagine the gasps of wonder as guest step into your backyard, taking in the truly brilliant area you have created? With some fairly simple solutions you can revamp your yard to look like a wonderland. Read on to find out how.

 

Start with the Bottom

Bring out the comfort of the indoors with some sleek timber decking. Decks are far warmer and more inviting than tiles, pavers or concrete, really making your guests feel at home. For a smooth transition from the inside to the outside you can raise the deck to the same height as the internal floor. Though decks are amazing, it is important to match the aesthetic of the house.
 
Image Source
For advice on decking and patio installations talk to building experts like Additions Building.

 

The Roof Above your Head

Patios are a comfortable place that is protected from the sun and rain. Depending on their use, a patio can be just about any design, shape or size. Very open designs are great for relaxing in a little shade while staying out in the weather, perfect for by the pool. Other designs can be very enclosed, like an outdoor room, protected from wind, rain and sun with lattice screens as walls or windows. Patios are nice to have attached to the house, but a real eye opener could be separated, standing alone and connected by a timber path.
 
 

Give your Guest Somewhere to Sit

Make your guests comfortable with plenty of furniture to sit and rest on. Good strong materials are important for durability out in the elements. You need to consider how many people you expect to entertain, then look at getting timber table and chairs to fit that number. Timber furniture can be uncomfortable to sit on, so consider some outdoor cushions that match your colour scheme. Some water proof couches are fantastic for a cosy seating solution.
 
Outdoor Daybed from Bunnings
Storage outside can sometimes be an issue, without having an ugly container or cupboard. Consider a storage bench to serve two purposes at once with some pillows on for comfort.

 

Even Your Fence can be Amazing

Bland and ugly exterior fences can ruin all the hard work of making an amazing outdoor entertaining area. Brick walls can be painted into a feature wall that grabs the attention of your guests and brings the whole area together. On larger walls mosaics can be placed for an artistic depth in the area. For timber fences, you can install a timber screen to cover up the eyesore and create a beautiful backdrop. You can even grow a vine through the screen to add life to the garden.

 

Outdoor Fireplace

Not much says wow in a backyard like a roaring fire. A fireplace can be utilised in so many different way in your entertainment area. It becomes a focal point that quest can sit around, it provides warmth in winter, you can cook from it and smoke is a natural insect repellent. Depending on your own style, you can start from a small fire bowl, a fire pit or ever a large outdoor fireplace with a chimney.
 
Image Source
It is up to you to decide how you style your backyard, but with just a few of these ideas you are sure to give your garden the wow factor for your guests.
 
What else can you do to make your outdoor entertainment area unforgettable?

Monday, 20 October 2014

tiny and i Teething Necklace Review and Giveaway

Miss C is one high maintenance baby girl. She arrived in to this world with a love of shoes and jewellery - both to chew on of course!
 
This little lady can spot a necklace or a pair of earrings a mile away. In fact a few months ago I was in a store admiring a necklace. That little lady cried so much until I gave her the necklace, so to save a complete meltdown I of course paid for it and promptly left the store - have you ever done this very manoeuvre before?! It is one I try and avoid at all costs (literally!).
 
When I heard about tiny and i teething necklaces I thought all my Christmases had come at once. Not only are these non toxic and baby safe necklaces, but they are very stylish for Mum to wear too!
 
 
The beads on the necklaces are made from the same safe (and soft) silicone that you will find in your babies bottles and dummies.
 
They are also waterproof, heat resistant and for safety feature a clever breakaway clasp.
 


 
The biggest dilemma when buying these is picking a colour - as you can see, there are SO many gorgeous colour combos to choose from.
 
 
In typical Allison style (she who loves all things mint!), I  opted for the 'Capri' set in the Fruit Loop necklace range, and is nothing short of gorgeous.
 
I wear a lot of neutrals, navy and mint so this colour combo with beads in emerald, chocolate, blush, mint, pebbly, navy and sky blue tones is perfect - it works with just about everything I own and wear.

 
And the little lady just LOVES it, and this Mum just LOVES anything that will keep her amused for longer than 10 seconds - win!
 
The Fruit Loop Necklaces are priced at $38.00 and would make the most amazing baby shower or new baby gift, especially for the Mum who has everything or the second time Mum.
 
tiny and i have very kindly offered my readers the chance to win their very own Fruit Loop Necklace - you get to pick which one of course!
 
To enter simply follow the Rafflecopter prompts below....
 

Enter Here

 
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Terms and Conditions

- The giveaway will be hosted by Rafflecopter and is open to Australian residents only
- The announcement of the lucky winner will be made on the Utterly Organised Facebook Page
- The lucky winner will have 5 days to contact Utterly Organised and claim their prize
- Failure to claim prize within designated period will result in another winner being drawn
- Entrants must like the Utterly Organised Facebook Page
- Any questions on the competition can be directed to utterlyorganised@gmail.com
 
Good luck everyone!
 
What colour combo are you loving from the range?
 
 
 

Thursday, 16 October 2014

Bargain of the Week... The Doormat

There are two things that you probably know about me by now:
 
1. That I love to Shop
2. That I love a good Bargain
 
So it only seemed natural to start up a little segment on the blog called Bargain of the Week!
 
Each week I hope to share with my favourite bargain that I have come across, that is frankly too good not to share.
 
More than likely it will be shared with grainy camera phone pics (taken on the run with two kids no doubt crying/screaming as I fly through the shops!). But if you can pardon the photo quality, hopefully you will see a shiny bargain buy waiting for you!
 
Without further adieu, I present the first BOTW (Bargain of the Week) - the Doormat.
 
 
 
Sure, I may not have a front door due to this extension (nor looking like getting one in the next 20 years at the rate our builders are working at), but boy when I do, my front doorstep is going to be looking pretty fabulous!
 
These doormats are a measly $6 - I know, I couldn't believe it either! Don't let the $10 price tag in the picture fool you, these babies are scanning at 6 bucks (though even at $10 it is still quite the steal)!
 
They are available at the Reject Shop - well they were when I picked them up this week - but be quick at this price.
 
I picked up the two prints as I couldn't decide between the two. I plan to use the bottom one (which I think is a bit better quality) for our new porch and the teal and white version for the cubby house.
 
They are very, very similar to a doormat that I have seen in a Furniture shop starting with F for $30.00.
 
What do you think? Bargain or what?
 
What bargains have you found this week? And what bargain would you like me to find you next?
 

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Miss C's Christening - Part 1: The Dress & Accessories Post and that Gorgeous Bangle from G by Gabrielle!

For those of you that follow my Facebook Page, you will know that a few weeks ago we celebrated Miss C's Christening.

We had her Christened at 8 months (can you believe she is already 8 months?!) which is the same age as Mr B when we celebrated his Christening. If you are new around these parts, you can catch all of the details of his Peter Rabbit themed Christening which we celebrated two years ago here and here.
 
Instead of overloading you with all of the details of the day, I thought that I would split it in to two posts with the first covering the all important outfit and accessory details!

She refused to get a picture without her hairbrush - no idea where she gets it from?! Haha
When I posted a sneak peek at her outfit on Facebook and Instagram of her outfit, I received a number of messages and emails about her amazing personalised bangle.
 
 
As such I thought that I would share a bit more information on this first up. The bracelet is by an amazing Melbourne lady called Gabrielle, who runs her own business called G by Gabrielle making handcrafted jewellery that is ah-mazing!
 
Gabrielle sells these stunning 'Princess Bangles' for girls and gals of all ages. These are personalised with an initial/initials of your choice and prices start at $129 for a bangle suitable for ages 6-12 months right up to 11-13 years.
 
This was our special little gift to Miss C, as our Princess needed the Princess Bangle of course!
 
I can personally remember being a little girl and having the exact same style of bangle permanently attached around my wrist for many, many years growing up. I wanted to give Miss C something that I cherished and adored so much myself growing up, and I love how it is extra special with the personalised charm with her initial.
 
 
When the sad day does come that she grows out of this down the track, I plan to recycle the charm to use on a necklace, it really will remain a keepsake that she can continue to wear.

 
Because I loved the bangle SO much, I couldn't resist getting one for myself too. Gabrielle also sells these in a ladies size for $149 so that you can have a Mummy & Me matching set like we have!
 
Instead of having my initials, I have opted to have a B and a C for my two gorgeous kiddies. It really is so special to wear and I get so many compliments on it when I am out and about (it never comes off!). Note to husbands out there - this would be a great Chrissie gift for a Mummy or Grandmummy personalised with the kids or grandkiddies initials!
 
Gabrielle has very, very kindly offered my readers the chance to purchase the bangle (or any of her amazing range) at a special 20% off for the month of October. So it is an absolutely perfect time to treat your little Princess, your Grandma or yourself with a piece of stunning, personalised jewellery that you will wear to death.
 
To redeem, simply head to the G by Gabrielle website and enter the code UTTERLY at check out and save yourself 20% off your order.
 
As for the rest of the outfit...
 

The Dress is the Occasion Dress from Seed. It is chiffon with a gorgeous sequined bodice (every girl needs a bit of sparkle right?!).
 
I managed to purchase it at a 20% off VIP sale after realising that the dress I did have her, no longer fitted a few weeks out (talk about panic!). I absolutely love the dress and think she will get a lot of wear out of it over the festive season - so I keep telling my husband... 
 
Her fur cardi was by Baker Baby by Ted Baker and it was just gorgeous! I purchased it from Myer at the end of Winter sales and it was reduced from a crazy $60.00 to around $28.00.

 
The little Silver Mouse shoes are also by Seed (that place is a total money pit for me!), I couldn't resist and also nabbed these on sale too.
 
The headband was actually made by me! I ordered her a headband from the US but it never arrived in time - typically it arrived the day after the event!
 
I was in a bit of a panic the night before, so decided to make her one using the flower that I wore in my hair at our wedding day.
 
 
I actually think that it is a bit more special that what I had planned so all was not lost :-)
 
And lastly the gorgeous, gorgeous sequin hanger is by the super lovely Natalie from Each Day with Jay. This actually sits on her bedroom door and proudly displays her special (or not so special) outfits for the day. I will be featuring more on these gorgeous hangers when I do her room reveal very, very soon - don't blame me, blame the builders for the hold up!!
 
Well that concludes Part 1, I will be back soon with Part 2 that will cover her special morning tea table and the other special details of the day. if you have any questions, as always please feel free to contact me or comment below.
 
Don't forget to head over to G by Gabrielle and check out the stunning Princess Bangle for your Princess (or yourself) and check out the rest of her beautiful range while you are at it!
 

Sunday, 12 October 2014

Organising my Closet for Spring and Summer and My Clothes Sale

Happy Sunday Folks!
 
I have been spending most of my weekend knee deep in my closet this weekend trying to sort, organise, purge and sell off some of my clothes. I have also donated a heap to charity along the way.
 
I literally have 4 closets full to the brim of clothes, so it is definitely time for a big clean up before my new walk in robe is ready. Which at the rate our extension is going, won't be for another 40 years - haha!
 
 
 
During the week I purchased these Aldi space saving hangers and cannot wait to replace all of my mis-matched regular hangers with these and see if they really do save some space - will report back on that soon!
 
I created a Facebook album to sell off some of my clothes yesterday. If you missed it, some new things have been added and a few things are still for sale and you can access the album via Facebook here.
 
I plan to continue the sort today, so will be adding some new things for sale during the day today (Sunday) and over the next week or so too, so keep your eye on the Facebook page if you are after some new things for Spring and Summer!
 
Anything not sold on the page will be listed on Ebay - such a BIG job!
 
 
 
I am sad to let go of many of my pretty dresses like these ones, but I am planning to pool my money together for a new dining table and looking forward to simplifying my closet - watch this space!
 
If you are after a few tips on Organising your own closet, here is a post that a created a while ago.
 
Enjoy your weekend!