Essentail Oils and Babies

Evalyn Mae is 7 months today! Give me a second while I tear up. Seriously, while living in baby-land the last 7 months, the time has been going by at hyper speed. Can any other mama’s relate?

Well by now you probably know that I love sharing monthly updates on what I’ve been using on baby Ev that have been effective. I’m always searching to treat my precious babe with home remedies, safe homeopathic alternatives, and essential oils. At least I try. I personally try to avoid taking any sort of medication unless it’s my last resort. The truth is that any prescription, and OTC medication that goes into your body, will always have a side effect either now or down the road, so I try to avoid them as much as possible… and now, so much more when it comes to baby.

There is so much to be said when it comes to essential oils. So I have partnered up with an expert, Kayla who will share a lot about the effectiveness, safety, and uses of essential oils, mainly in babies. As moms, we all want what’s best for our babies, and I strongly believe essential oils are a great way to treat, maintain, and benefit your baby’s overall health.

I have asked 10 concerning questions when it comes to essential oils that Kayla so descriptively answered. I have learned that although there are SO many great things about essential oils, you have to be wise on how you use them, cause like anything, moderation is key, especially when it comes to a baby. Also, Kayla is hosting a Facebook class tomorrow where she shares a “Baby Class” on everything you need to know about essential oils and babies in further depth, a chance to ask questions and receive answers on the spot (since the class will be live), and where to purchase any, if interested. But if you have any more questions, feel free to reach out.

10 Q & A on Babies and Essential Oils

1. Which Essential Oils are safe for baby?

Most of all essential oils can be beneficial for baby.  Here are a few that I would say use with caution (not using repeatedly or on a regular basis).These include:

  • Eucalyptus
  • Basil
  • Juniper
  • Peppermint
  • Hyssop
  • Wintergreen

Also, something to keep in  mind:
“Children are in general more delicate and some oils such as eucalyptus and peppermint have very strong smells which can, in rare cases, lead to respiratory distress.  Be careful when wearing strong smelling oils, diffusing or using around a newborn or young child.  Babies also have much thinner, more delicate skin than adults, and tend to be very sensitive to the potency of essential oils.  Diluting with a natural lotion is always a good choice.” – Debra Rayburn, Gentle Babies


2. Is it safe to keep an Essential Oil diffuser in the same room where baby sleeps?

YES! We love diffusing in the nursery for nap time and bed time! Diffusing helps create a calming, peaceful atmosphere that can help induce sleep. Breathing in essential oils directly influences the control center of the brain, the hypothalamus.  This area sends instructions through our body concerning sleep patterns, mood, behavior, appetite, and the release of certain hormones.


3. Where are the best areas on baby’s body to apply Essential Oils?
I started off applying eo’s on the bottom of my son’s feet. Place drops of oils into a bowl, in a roller, or in your hand and add your carrier oil, my favorite is either fractionated coconut oil or avocado oil.  Always dilute when applying oils on infants and children.  When beginning topical use, it is wise to start slowly on the bottoms of the feet and gradually test on other areas for sensitivity. Now my son is 7 months old and I roll his Lullaby roller on his feet, behind his ears, down his spine, and on his chest. His Lullaby roller is 5 drops Lavender and 5 drops Frankincense topped off with FCO in a 10 ml roller, it’s perfect for calming and immune boosting!


4. Which EO’s are helpful for sleep training?
Lots! Here are a few of our favorite oils and blends:
SLEEPYIZE:
Y’all need this oil, especially for kiddos! It is so relaxing and peaceful, and it already comes with a carrier oil in the bottle as part of the Kidscents line—perfectly formulated for use on littles (although adults like it too!). Roll on the bottoms of their little feet before bed, and/or down their spine.

LAVENDER:
It is so lovely and calming, and is such a great oil to use for sleep training!
Diffuse it at night, and add it to rollers for topical application.

GENTLE BABY:
This is an oil that invites a sense of calming for both baby and adults alike! It is a blend of some of the dreamiest oils, including rose, lavender, lemon, roman chamomile, geranium, ylang-ylang, jasmine, and palmarosa. That is pretty much pure magic in a bottle! Diffuse it and make a roller of just Gentle Baby for a dreamy nap and bed time experience.

SLEEPY TIME ROLLER:
I do 4 drops cedarwood, 4 drops orange, 4 drops lavender, and 3 drops vetiver, and fill the rest with a carrier oil in a 10 ml roller. It is seriously the best!!! Good for baby and mama!
 
DIFFUSER BLENDS:
It’s great to start with a calming blend in the evening as you begin your bed time routine and are getting ready to settle down. We also love to diffuse overnight as we sleep. It is such a wonderful support for everyone’s sleep.

Here are some of our favorite diffuser blends:

  • Cedarwood and orange
  • Peace & Calming (I or II) and orange
  • Gentle Baby and lavender
  • Dream Catcher
  • Roman Chamomile and frankincense

5. How early on can you start using EO’s on baby?
Staring at day one you can start, however, some prefer to wait a week or two until both baby and mama have figured out a few things like nursing. Mama’s own scent is very important for baby in those early days! I started at around two weeks old for my son. Here is a good guideline for ages and dilutions:

Babies: One day – 2 years old
Young LIving suggest ⅛ the labeled concentration of all oils on babies from ages 0-1.  Be sure to reference the safe list below to avoid oils not suggested for use under two before using a blend or single.
Toddler and Kiddos: Two – Six years old
Young LIving suggests ¼ the labeled concentration for children ages 2-6. Using carrier oils and lotions is also a great way to extend the use of your bottles! It’s great when you’re on a “mama” budget!

“Using oils neat or undiluted will create a tendency for the oil to evaporate more quickly.  Using  a carrier oil or lotion may also create a more sustained effect and reduce possible over-sensitivities especially in this age group.”

Kids ages 7-11
Young Living suggests ½ the labeled concentration for this age range.

Mama Tip:
When starting with oils, use one at a time always diluted to avoid overloading their system.  Slowly start to add in oils as they adjust. This is a great age for kids to start using their own blends.  Mix up their favorite oil for school or the oils that you use on them daily in a roller bottle and send them on their way.  Be sure to teach them oil safety and to apply oils to the feet first and always diluted.

Kids ages 12+
Young Living suggests full labeled concentration for kids ages 12+. At this age, kiddos will be used to applying oils and what oils are needed and when.  Be sure to teach them oil safety first and to start applying to the feet first.

Mama Tip:
Be aware of “Hot” oils such as Peppermint, Panaway, Thieves, and Oregano.  Hot oils feel icy/hot to the touch.  This can cause irritation of the skin and these oils should always be avoided around the eyes.  Be sure to not rub the eyes or around the eyes after applying hot oils.  We always suggest diluting hot oils no matter the age.


6. Why is it important to dilute EO’s
Diluting is “watering down” the potency of essential oils which is key for babies. Their skin is much more delicate so diluting is just what we do. It also helps stretch your bottle of oils. My favorite carrier oils to dilute with are fractionated coconut oil or avocado oil for rollers and regular (solid at room temp.) coconut oil for massaging onto my son’s skin.


7. Which EO’s are helping during teething?
COPAIBA! This oil is a MUST for teething! It has anti-inflammatory properties and helps the body’s natural response to injury and irritation. It helps numb the area it’s applied to and is known as the “Firefighter” putting out fires so to speak. Use it by itself or with clove. I made my son a roller with Copaiba and Clove topped off with FCO in a 2 ml roller and we use it when needed for teething relief.


8. Can EO’s help with common colds or fever?
The Kidscents line has a blend called Snifflease that we have come to love for whenever he is congested.  Use this in place of Vick’s vapor rub. It’s pre-diluted and ready to apply, I rub it on his chest and diffuse it for respiratory support. You can always rub it on their chest with coconut oil to stretch the bottle longer or if you are applying to a younger infant. Some other things we do to boost immune support during times of dealing with any crud is using Thieves household cleaner to clean allllllll the things in the house, everything! I love having the Thieves hand purifier in the diaper bag, in my car, and on the diaper changing table in his room.

Here are some of our favorite diffuser blends for immunity: (Using 2 drops of each)

  • Thieves, lemon, and frankincense
  • Tea tree, lemon, and lavender
  • Snifflease and lavender
  • German or Roman chamomile and R.C. (stands for respiratory care)
  • Sleepize and frankincense

9. Can EO’s be harmful if not used properly?
Yes, of course. As with anything if used improperly eo’s can be harmful.

However, “Sensitivities to YL’s essential oils are seen very rarely.  Typically, if sensitivities occur, the cause is either that a different brand of chemically adulterated oils used or because they were used in excess which simply overloaded the system.”-Quotes from Debra Rayburn, Gentle Babies


10. Which EO’s brand do you recommend? Why?
I have done a ton of research on this topic because I wanted to know that without a doubt the oils I use on my baby were the best!  I only suggest using Young Living essential oils since YL is the only company out there with the purest oils on earth! Do your research and I think you’ll be impressed to find how different Young Living is from the rest. Check out their Seed to Seal process at www.seedtoseal.com


Thank you, Kayla! And there you have it… an in depth overview of Essential Oil’s and babies. And if you’re interested in following what Kayla has to say on a daily basis regarding essential oils in everyday life, you can follow her on instagram! Here’s a little more on Kayla:

Kayla @floating.feather.essentials

My name is Kayla Williams. I am a wife and a new mama to the sweetest little boy ever! I was born and raised in Boise Idaho and I will probably never leave I love it here so much! I am apart of the best oily community of mamas bettering their families health on oil at a time! I originally bought my kit for sleep support and making my house smell good without the use of highly scented candles which gave my husband headaches because hello chemicals! Two weeks after ordering my starter kit I found out I was pregnant! I was now even more excited and determined to use my oils for everything in life- specially during my pregnancy, birth and on my baby. Fast forward to today my son is now 7 months old and I cannot imagine not having these amazing supportive oils in our life!

My favorite starter kit oil is a tie between Thieves, Frankincense and Stress Away, I mean come on I can’t just pick one!

Shop the post:

XO. I.P.

Christmas Brunch: Set The Table

If you’re not in the Christmas mood yet, then I won’t judge. ‘Cause if shopping, parties, and secret Santa are not your thing, what about Christmas Brunch? I feel like Christmas day gets nowhere near the amount of credit it deserves. I mean we are in preparation for that one day for months, and when it finally arrives, everyone is left with the food coma effect…aaaalong with a bunch of sweet memories too, of course. 🙂

Well, allow us (Ema & I– a guest blogger from my recent brunch post) to share some Christmas brunch ideas, to set the right mood for your family and friends.

Christmas morning is so special, and I love having my family wake up to the smell of french toast in the air, I made this Overnight Baked French Toast with Raspberry Sauce last year, and I will definitely have it on my brunch menu list this year too. You  can find the recipe here.

So go on, make this year one for the books. Merry (early) Christmas, friends!

 

 

Fete Napkins | Pink Teacups | French Gilt Mirror | Mercury Glass Bowl | White Plates

Shop the post:

Check out this Overnight Baked French Toast with Raspberry Sauce recipe… perfect for Christmas brunch!

XO I.P.

Blogiversary

YAY! Oh La Femme turns 1. Annnnd just like that…I’m celebrating 1 year of blogging! Actually, I didn’t realize it’s been one year until my husband mentioned it to me the other day. I guess time does fly when you’re having fun, huh?! Well, today I’m going to change it up and share my experience on blogging so far, some tips, and how anyone (no blog necessary) can sign up with Influenster to receive free samples.

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DIY Baby Closet/Storage Space

Today I am sharing a DIY closet storage for babies/kids. I found this DIY system can be very helpful for those of you (like me) who may have limited space and/or are looking for a budget-friendly alternative to a closet/storage system. Our current situation is that we live in a tight-knit, one bedroom apartment in LA. It’s super cute, cozy, has a beautiful balcony view, but I don’t know how long we can manage here with a little baby. Gotta love LA for being so cramped for space (rolling my eyes). Annnnyways, in the meantime, I really needed to improvise with what I was going to do with all of my baby-to-be’s adorable clothes and accessories. We literally have ONE mid-sized closet, and that’s it. So after endless pinning, and searching for inspiration, ideas starting clicking in my head. One by one. I quickly got online and started searching Amazon and IKEA for things that I thought would work best. Next, I made a day trip to IKEA (so fun!) and after getting everything I didn’t need, I found items that worked perfectly with what I had in mind. Other ideas really started to flow into place after that, and I must say, I was very impressed with the final result. DIY projects can be sooo fun at times. 🙂

Have a look at what I paired up to make this DIY project work, at least for our space. Also, I have attached some links/pictures that will help you come up with ideas, or the direct links of the items I found, if you were wondering where to purchase them.

Oh, and I am so happy this project came together quickly since I’m on a short timeline here… less than two weeks away from my delivery date! tick-tock. 

2 IKEA bookshelves used to organize and hold these items. See direct link below.

2 storage inserts used to hang clothes and hold blankets. See link below.

Oh, heyyyyy Miss. Sophie. Apparently, this tether is magic for babies. We shall see…

Shoe rack? Nope. I used a pot lid organizer from IKEA as a baby shoe rack. Link below.

Finally, I used glass cylinder vases to display these adorable hair bows!

They didn’t wrap around as nicely as I thought they would, so for easy access, I pinned them with hair clips.

Ta-da!

IKEA storage systems:

Shop related items:

You have to check out Fawn Hill Co baby accessories. They are made of natural materials, and are absolutely adorable! I love the prints and feel of these styles. Also, these storage baskets are simply perfect. Click below for direct links, or check out more of their unique items here! I can’t wait to use them on my little babe.

 

 

 

Pregnancy Update & Shower Details

So here I am, onto week 24 in my pregnancy, 15 weeks to go. This little babe is the size of a papaya and is really starting to make a grand appearance. A couple months ago I used to get the awkward stare and hesitating question, “Oh, are you pregnant?” With a look of uneasiness on their face not knowing if they blurted out the question before it was too late. Now there isn’t any hesitation. People just know. Now I get the question, “Aw, how far along are you?” or, “When are you due?” and many times I get a shocked reaction when I answer, “I’m only ___(24) weeks.”Some people think I’m well into my third trimester, but to their surprise I’m only a little over half way there! It has definitely been an interesting experience so far. So many exciting moments of anticipation of the unknown. After getting back from being home (Canada) for the holidays, this little babe started kicking like crazy! I was actually a little worried that I didn’t feel her kick by 20 weeks, but by the 21st week she started and hasn’t stopped since. Kicking and bouncing is very normal. But apparently, my doctors says that she has a lot of fluid movement in the belly, which may lead to sleepless nights and discomfort. This is all normal and very good signs of a healthy babe, so it’s moments like this that I have to remember to be grateful and praise God for a baby that appears healthy so far. 🙂

It’s true when people would tell me that I would feel better during my second trimester! I truly feel great! I can eat everything- and a lot of it, I also started eating foods that I would dare look at before pregnancy (like McDonalds being one of them-uh!). I really want to commit to a healthy diet but sometimes, the temptation is sooo real, I can’t deprive this babe. haha. My husband is definitely shocked by my eating habits, seeing that I was never like this before, it has been a shock to me too. But I am definitely trying to maintain a healthy diet even though I have some minor slips along the way. 🙂

I wanted to do this sooner, but time just flies! Below, I have listed my favourite pregnancy items up to date, which have significantly helped me! I will be posting and talking about where I find all my pretty pregnancy clothing. ‘Cause fashion does not stop at pregnancy! 😉

My Favourite Pregnancy Items: 

Simply click on the picture and it’ll show you were I found them!

Morning (all day) Sickness Candy 

  • Developed by healthcare professionals to provide relief from morning sickness
  • This is a special formulation of essential oils, aromatherapy and a unique delivery method, now with vitamin B6 (which helps with nausea)
  • I would bring these candies with me everywhere, they were so helpful when I felt the onset of symptoms

Belly Balm– to prevent stretch marks 

  • A unique, safe, and effective blend of butter, essential oils, and botanicals to help prevent stretch marks, improve skins elasticity, and hydrate your skin
  • Made with all natural ingredients including Chamomile and Comfrey, this effective and safe balm will deeply hydrate and improve your skins elasticity and help skin naturally stretch while providing relief of dry and itchy skin (this was me a couple weeks ago, it works like a charm!)
  • 100% natural ingredients, no harsh chemicals, free of preservatives and artificial fragrances
  • I like to use this product along with coconut oil on a daily basis

Pregnancy Bras- a must!

  • As a result of a changing body in pregnany…and I mean life changing, I really needed something comfortable and supportive. I am so happy I came across this bra set. Most days I don’t even feel like I am wearing ta bra- which is awesome! ha
  • Supportive, yet super comfortable
  • Great price for 3!

Pre-Natal- highly rated

  • It was really important for me to find the top of the line pre-natals, after much research I thought these to be the best fit for me based on what I was looking for
  • RAW means no high heat, synthetic binders, fillers, artificial flavors, sweeteners, colors or additives commonly used in tablets. Whole food means RAW Food-Created Nutrients are blended in a base of 23 fruits and vegetables together with food cofactors
  • This pre-natal vitamin was rated top 5 on multiple websites for leading vitamins during pregnancy
  • Not harsh on the body, and I often take them on an empty stomach

Iron Supplement- highly rated

  • After getting blood work done, I was Iron deficient (like 99% of women it seems) so I wanted to find the best and most effective supplement on the market and on my wallet 😉
  • Floradix contains an easily absorbed form of organic iron with extracts of carefully selected herbs, delicious fruit juices, and vitamins C and B complex- iron is best absorbs with Vitamin C, which it contains
  • My doctor told me to purchase any iron that was labeled “slow release”. Which simply means it’s slowly released and absorbed in the body and will not cause constipation. This brand is actually rated on the top 5 iron supplements for pregnant women based on my findings.

I hope this helps you, I did a lot of research to ensure the best safety for my baby and myself during pregnancy. Make sure to do the same!

Baby Shower Details 

I know I’m a little overdue, but I really wanted to share some of my special moments, and details from my baby shower when I was back at home for the holidays. I felt so blessed to have been showered with the amount of gifts and love from all the friends and family that attended! I seriously have enough clothing items for my baby’s first year- and I’m not just talking about clothes, I got so much more. <3

I got this beautiful illustration done by my talented fellow blogger, Joanna who does such a great job to customized the illustration to your expectations. I absolutely loved doing this for my gender reveal, “It’s a girl!” and I also used this illustration to make electronic baby shower invitations. It was perfect, and exactly what I wanted.

Be sure to check out more of Joanna’s work here!

You can easily make free electronic invitations by downloading an app, any would do. If you don’t want to pay for it- simply screen shot it and customize it yourself! (that white blotch is the white out for the contact info 😉

Of course, I ended up making/designing my own dress. I will be talking about that soon. SO stay tuned.

Here are the pretty details of the party decorations. I think the desserts were my favourite. hehe!

Many people asked where I got these adorable realistic rose gold cutlery from- well you can find it here!

 

Everything turned out so pretty, and I couldn’t have done it without the help of my friends and family. <3

Make sure you let me know what you think! I love hearing from you.

xo I.P.

 

Home-made Lavender Lemon Essential Oil Soap

Hi everyone!

Happy New Year! 🙂 I know I’m a little late, but better late than never. 😉 It has been a busy time for us after we spent the holidays back home (Canada) for about 3 weeks. But now that we are back, I am really trying to get myself motivated and get back into the swing of things. Although I have to say, with this pregnancy and my belly growing by the day (22 weeks!) all I want to do most days is lay around, research all my pregnancy questions, and scroll through Pinterest until my fingers are numb. So much for my New Years resolutions? Ah!

Anyways, while I was back at home (which I like to refer to as Canada) I posted an Instagram picture of home-made soaps that I made with my mama and cousin for my baby shower. This was our first time attempting home made soaps. But they turned out perfectly, and we had too much fun in the process. I must say, they did look INSTA-worthy! 😛

So if we first timers can do it- so can you! Not only will you enjoy it, but it is effortless since it’s a matter of 3 steps, with 3-4 ingredients. You can stick to the basics, or add your own ingredients, but follow my how-to on making the perfect homemade soaps.



Soap making is so basic, it only has 3 steps!

  1. Melt
  2. Mix
  3. Pour

That’s it. 

 

 

You’ll never have to buy soap again! And you can rest assured that the ingredients are safe, and harmless. I am planning on making a big batch for my baby. Stay tuned! But as basic as it may be, it’s always best to go through a step-by-step guide to ensure a perfect outcome.

If you’re wondering where to find soap supplies, I’ve listed some of my picks below (keep scrolling), that are affordable and also a good choice if you want to invest in quality ingredients. You can also buy them at your local craft store.

Homemade Lavender Lemon Essential Oil Soap (See full recipe below)

Supplies you need: You can buy these from the dollar store

  • Microwaveable glass
  • Spatula for mixing
  • measuring cups/spoons
  • Soap cutter/knife

1. Melt: cut the soap base into cubes, and melt in microwave. 

2. Mix: Add Lavender and Lemon essential oils, dried Lavender, and foaming base (optional).

Foaming base: this is totally optional, this base will make your soaps more bubbly, so it up to your preference. 

3. Pour: Pour soap mixture into molds, and let it sit up to one hour. 

Done. Pretty perfect soaps.

Here I have listed where you can find all the ingredients and supplies you need to make these amazing soaps, thanks to Amazon. Simply click on the picture, and it’ll take you right to the site! Or, you can buy everything you need at a local craft store like Michael’s or Joanns. 🙂

Soap Base: (2lbs will make about 8-10 soaps depending on the size of your moulds)

Shea butter base: this is what I used!

Goat’s milk base:

Oatmeal base:

Foaming base:

Soap molds: they come in all shapes and sizes!

   

Essential oils and dried Lavender:
   

Supplies: Soap cutter

And if you’re gift-giving…

Heat- shrink wraps:

“Hand-made” label stickers:

 

Homemade Lavender Lemon Essential Oil Soap

Ingredients

  • 2 lb of soap base (I used shea butter-see above for more options)
  • 2 tsp Lavender Essential Oil
  • 1 tsp Lemon Essential Oil
  • 1/4 cup of dried Lavender
  • 1/4 cup of foaming base

Instructions

  1. Start of by cutting your soap base into cubes, with a knife or soap cutter.
  2. In a microwaveable bowl, add your cubes of shea butter soap base.
  3. Microwave on high for 30 seconds, then an additional 10 seconds intervals until base has melted. Stir until it is the same consistently throughout.
  4. Once melted and working quickly, add in drops of Lavender and Lemon essential oils, foaming base, and dried Lavender and stir until combined.
  5. Carefully pour mixture into soap mold.
  6. Let sit for 40 minutes to an hour before attempting to remove it.
  7. To remove, carefully push on the bottom of the mold until the soap releases.
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http://www.ohlafemme.com/2017/01/20/home-made-lavender-lemon-essential-oil-soap/

Project 2 x Design

Happy Friday!

Today I am sharing a post of my second fashion design project. This project was unique because I made it specially for my maternity photo shoot. (Thank you for all your sweet comments!) 

I felt terrible during my first trimester while experiencing all-day nausea and lack of appetite. And I thought I wouldn’t have enough time to design and sew the dress before the shoot. So I started shopping to find a dress instead- but after endless searching, I found nothing. And that’s when I realized I better get to sewing because the date was coming up quick! Thankfully as the weeks went by and as I was entering into my second trimester, I started feeling better! I was able to finish the dress on time (even if it meant finishing the final touches the night before ha!) and I felt great during the shoot…although I experienced some pregnancy cravings kicking in! (Keep reading to find out!)

My Inspiration behind Project 2: 

I already conceived a design well before I drew it out. I knew I wanted something special, unique, and feminine. So I quickly sketched out some ideas, and gathered more ideas from Pinterest– my ultimate inspiration! I became very found of the 3-D fabric-look. And I noticed it was becoming a popular trend in wedding dresses and runways. I thought it would be more efficient to buy a 3-D fabric piece butttt it was a very pricey- no wonder it’s used for wedding dresses and runways! So instead, I decided to make my own personalized 3-D look. I drew a simple flower, cut it out and traced it onto the fabric I was using. I took a while, but I would say it was totally worth the look I was going for. 🙂

Here are some of my favourite designs I found that helped gather my final sketch:

*NOTE: These pictures ABOVE are not my own, for direct linking and credits, you will be able to find these photos on my Pinterest page, under the “Fashion Inspo” board.  While you’re at it, check out my pins!


The Final Look

If you know me, you’ll know that I love tulle and chiffon fabric. They make any piece of clothing lovely. These fabrics can really dress up a “look”…if that’s what you’re going for! My bump is hardly noticeable unless I place my hand under the bump. But believe me, it’s there! 🙂

If you notice, on the back side of this dress I created a pleat that would allow for adjusting the waist size of this dress. In case I decided to wear it again once my bump grows.

Here are some close-up’s of the handmade flowers, and intricate design.

This is the front of the dress. I thought the chest pleats would give this dress a perfect touch.

Coming to the end of the photo shot I was desperately craving a BL.T. sandwich. So after the shoot, we stopped by the nearest Panera Bread, and my craving was totally satisfied. Their B.L.T.’s are ahhh-mazzz-ing! This B.L.T. craving lasted for about a week, lol!

A perfect end, to a perfect day.

Let me know your thoughts!

Be blessed,

I.P. XO

Birthday Fun in California

There is definitely a first for everything…Especially when you move half way across the country! This year I celebrated my 23rd birthday in Pasadena, California. My husband planned an evening out town, and I was very impressed. 🙂

Pasadena is a small-ish town northeast of LA, known for the shopping and dining district, along with their beautiful Victorian and striking architecture buildings. It really has a European feel, which made site seeing and picture taking… #instaworthy. 😉

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This courtyard at City Hall was so lovely

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The restaurant we went to was called Cafe Santorini. It was so fun and the food was delish!

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So to start off the day, I had these adorable champagne gummies from Sugarfina because I thought they were totally suitable.

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Many people asked where I got my outfit from, as if was going of that flappers look, lol…I actually wasn’t, frills are just so fun, and so in, and I just felt like wearing something fun for my birthday! After all, I couldn’t let this adorable dress just sit in my closet forever! Anyways, I got this dress for a steal a couple months ago when Zara (my favourite store of all time), had it’s semi-annual sale on (which is currently still happening if they have any more items left!).

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And as for the shoes… yup you guessed it… #Zara ! I got these again, when they had their 2016 winter sale just this past January. I couldn’t resist when I came across these! They are just drop dead gorgeous.

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So I pieced it all together by working with what I had in my closet.

Dress: Zara

Shoes: Zara

Choker: Aldo

Earrings: Hudson’s Bay

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Buuuut I have to say, I had a little dilemma with the choice of earrings, which would you have picked?

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You know, it doesn’t always have to be new, but thats something I just recently learned. I used to always buy a new item for random events; girls night out, date night, wedding, shower, church, and so on. But eventually my husband caught on and said that had to stop, lol. But there is always something you can work with in your closet. Like that little black dress, or that plain tee, or even dressing up your plain outfit with those fancy shoes that you never wear! Im telling you, re-discover your closet, there is more in there then you may know. 🙂 I’ve helped some friends that needed tips on “what to wear” and they were surprised with what they had in their closet once paired up with something they never thought could work. Anyways, thats my little rant for the day, he he. I hope your day was as special as mine was. <3

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xo I.P.

How I Designed My Wedding Dress

Designing my dream wedding has always been a passion for me growing up. As long as I could remember I have been a hopeless romantic, dreaming of prince charming and having the wedding of my dreams. Ha! I would have to say, most of it came true… I ended meeting my prince charming, who I can happily say is my husband now, and I was able to plan and decorate my wedding with the help of my husband, family, friends, and great Pinterest ideas! Also, I was able to custom design my Vera Wang wedding dress all in…ONE month! Crazy huh? Well, I did it. And so can you! Now it was a little stressful at moments considering the time factor, but somehow it all came together.

My husband proposed on July 3, 2015, and we decided to get married September 13 of 2015. We thought…why not? I’ve planned and decorated many events in the past, and I thought this was going to be a piece of cake. We were right for the most part, and although a little hiccup(s) along the way, we definitely made it work.

So anyways, back to the dress…because of the short time frame, I had to buy one “off the floor”, ordering was just out of the question (ummm ya, I really didn’t think of this when we decided to pick the wedding date)! After checking out a few places, I felt out of luck. I was so disheartened and thought that I would have to settle for anything and that designing/custom styling was no longer an option. So I tried something else…shopping online. I almost considered making a purchase, but there were so many risks; the picture not looking the same as in person, the quality, the details, the sizing, and the list went on! So I had to keep searching for my ideal dress. And I finally came across it…the Vera Wang “White” collection at David’s Bridal. Unbelievable. I didn’t even think that would be possible. I thought I would come across a cute little boutique located in a cute little old town, but no, I found this dress at David’s Bridal. As soon as I put the dress on, it felt it was perfect. The fit was almost exact, the style/frame was what I was looking for, and it was a brand new dress that just came in a couple days ago (bonus!). It was somewhat plain, but I started getting so many ideas because now that I had a dress to work with, I was able to custom design it without all the hassle of starting from scratch.

And that’s what I did. After looking at many Pinterest ideas, wedding magazines, and different styles, I put together a look that I wanted. And it was so easy! (Obviously, it does help having an AMAZING seamstress)

Before:

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After:

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Front View of the dress

Now the details…

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Oh…and my cute Mischka Badgley shoes

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Customized:

  • Sleeves: There is something classy about wedding dress sleeves; the sleeves were made from my wedding dress skirt.
  • Appliqué (flowers/beading) on the sleeves: This was unique because I wanted to make sure the sleeves had the same texture as the dress, so my seamstress decided it was best to cut out of the skirt of the dress to make the sleeves and use some of the appliques to add onto the sleeves. This ensured that the sleeves looked like it was part of the dress, she’s a genius, it worked out perfectly.
  • Shoulder beading: I found at a small boutique in Hamilton, but the easiest place to find them is on Amazon.
  • Took off the white sash
  • Cut around the neckline

And there you have it. It was done just in time, and it was exactly what I wanted, without paying a fortune.

However, shortly after, I did come across other ideas such as buying separate pieces of a dress and making your personalized style that way. Here are a few examples:

This skirt is from David’s Bridal:

Vera Wang Tulle Skirt

http://www.davidsbridal.com/Product_white-by-vera-wang-tulle-skirt-vw351326

You can top it with a piece from BHLDN to get a complete wedding dress look (the wedding edition of Anthropologie)

BHLDN Corset

Also, don’t forget to check out Amazon for their great selection of beaded appliqué that really gives the dress a nice touch. These were my favorite finds. (I wish I discovered this before I spent time looking for appliqué in different shops.)

Bridal Sash

Or you can get creative and put it on your sleeves, headbands, shoes, and/or anywhere your little heart desires. 🙂

Wedding dress appliqué

I love BHLDN! Everything on their website looks so magical. If you’ve never come across their website… you will get instantly hooked after seeing the stuff they have.

These are just some ideas. But you can get creative and not have to spend a fortune. If I could do it over again…I would. It was so much fun! 🙂

xo I.P