BRAND SPOTLIGHT: PRINTFRESH

Thirty weeks into my pregnancy and this mama is all about comfort.  I’m already beginning to feel the discomfort of the third trimester and I need clothes and sleepwear that are no fuss, easy, and something I feel good in.  One brand that fits all of this criteria is Printfresh!

When I partner with brands, I make sure I test drive the product before I share with my community.  I’ve been a longtime fan of Printfresh and their unique collection of sleepwear.  I’m so happy to report that the brand and the product meet my expectations. 

Created in 2017, Printfresh is a beautiful collection of sleepwear, stationary, and gifts. Designed in Philadelphia, PA and manufactured in India, Printfresh offers the most whimsical, vibrant, and preppy prints that make lounging around so much more fun. With twelve bright prints to choose from, there are plenty of options for sleepwear lovers to choose from.

You know I love a bright print, but I equally love a piece that is beautifully crafted and soft.  Printfresh will be GOTS certified organic cotton by the end of the year.  Their crisp, breathable cotton fabrics have cooling properties – which is a must for this very pregnant mama who has multiple hot flashes a day.   And, the fabric becomes softer and more luxurious with each wash. 

But this brand is so much more than pretty sleepwear.  Printfresh values ethical and sustainable manufacturing and they are incredibly transparent about their methods.  They place a high priority on safe working conditions, fair wages and compensation, and work that is voluntary.  Having studied fashion and been immersed in the world of fast fashion and couture fashion, I truly value the work that brands put into being sustainable and ethical.  I appreciate when a brand focuses on the quality of their product, as well as the ethical production and manufacturing of that product. 

Printfresh also prioritizes being good stewards of the earth. They seek out socially and environmentally friendly vendors. One of the ways in which they are trying to reduce their carbon footprint on this earth is by offering only two collections per year. They’ve researched and implemented measures that reduce waste in the fashion and textile production process, as well as the reduction of waste in packaging (they use 100% recycled ivory poly mailers made from 100% recycled content and 50% post-consumer waste).

All around, this brand is top notch in their story, mission, and product.  I love wearing this robe in Lemon Zest around the house and plan on bringing it with me to the hospital when the baby arrives.  Even though I’m busting at the seams (literally) in the short sleep set, I’m excited to wear these post baby as it will be comfortable and perfect for nursing.  

Check out some of my favorite prints

Use this link to learn more about Printfresh and invest in one of their sleepwear styles for yourself! 

Slainte,

Shannon 

STYLE: MOMMY AND ME STYLES FROM DUFFIELD LANE

There are few things I love more than twinning with my Lilly. I’m such a sucker for matching or coordinating dresses. I love matching styles that are classic and stylish and appropriate for both our ages. It’s only natural that one of my favorite go-to brands for Mommy and Me styles is Duffield Lane!

Duffield Lane creates timeless and classic styles that span generations. Located in Grand Rapids, MI, Duffield Lane’s styles are inspired by an effortless, coastal way of life. The brand started out as a pajama company but has since expanded to offer five collections a year. They are known for their perfect fits, bright preppy fabrics, and high quality craftsmanship.

Duffield Lane has the cutest Mommy and Me matching and coordinating styles at an affordable price. Lilly and I have a few matching styles and all of them are beautiful quality. I tend to organize Lilly’s clothes into everyday play and special occasions, and I can say the styles offered for little girls are of the highest quality but also hold up exceptionally well for everyday use.

I also love that Duffield Lane offers matching and coordinating styles for Mommy and Me. I love that Lilly and I have the option to perfectly match each other or we can match our fabrics but wear different styles. Both options make me equally happy and I’ll continue to twin with this cute girl until she no longer thinks it’s cool.

Duffield Lane also has an entire collection that is maternity friendly. I love that these styles are flattering for expecting mamas but will also transition beautifully to postpartum life. I own several Duffield Lane pieces and all of them are a perfect fit, stylish, and so insanely comfortable.

One of my struggles this pregnancy has been feeling so incredibly uncomfortable in my own skin. I’ve had a challenging time finding clothes and styles that are comfortable and make me feel good. I can honestly say that my Duffield Lane pieces have been my favorite this pregnancy and they always make me feel like a million bucks. Especially their maxi dresses – I could live and sleep in these styles all day and feel so good.

If you are looking for styles that are classic, timeless, great quality, and comfortable, then Duffield Lane will be your new go-to. You can click here to shop some of our favorite Duffield Lane styles!

Slainte,

Shannon

BRAND SPOTLIGHT: SARAH FLINT SHOES x NATALIE REVIEW

My love for classic style runs deep. I’ve talked before about how my sense of style is heavily influenced by fashion icons such as Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, Audrey Hepburn, and Grace Kelly. When I discovered Sarah Flint Shoes, I was instantly transported to another era that was defined by feminine elegance and class. As I explored this brand further, I fell completely in love with the styles and mission behind the Sarah Flint brand.

This luxury brand is founded by a woman and inspired by women. Each style is designed, crafted, and manufactured with the utmost care and with comfort and style in mind. Investing in a pair of Sarah Flint shoes will last you a lifetime – they are timeless and will never go out of style. ⠀

When Sarah Flint reached out last fall and asked me to be a brand ambassador, it was a no brainer. I already loved the style of the shoes and the mission of the brand. The Sarah Flint team graciously gifted me a pair of shoes of my choice and I selected The Natalie! I was instantly drawn to the classic, timeless silhouette of this style.

The Natalie was inspired by the everyday woman – a woman who is sophisticated, chic, and easy going. This shoe is handcrafted in some of the best Italian factories and great care is taken with each and every individual shoe. This style in particular has sold out in 24 hours over THREE times in the past. It’s truly a favorite among many women and it’s easy to see why!

WHY I LOVE THESE SHOES

I’ve had five solid months to test drive these shoes, all while being pregnant.  And let me tell you, they are 100% worth the investment.  These are the most comfortable pair of flats I own and I can chase a toddler in them, which speaks volumes. They are made of a luxurious leather lining with a leather outsole and rubber forepart to prevent slipping.  The 3mm of extra padding that is added to the footbed makes for increased comfort all day. 

Aside from being able to wear these all day, I love the style and fit. They fit true to size, are comfortably snug, but have just the perfect amount of stretch. The pointed toe and asymmetrical bow feature make these shoes so stylish, timeless and classic. The sand calf color makes these an easy neutral that pairs with everything.

WHY I LOVE THIS BRAND

For someone who worked in the fashion industry for a long time, I’ve very much come to appreciate the craftsmanship of a product.  The amount of time spent designing and selecting the details, fit, and construction of these shoes is incredible .  It truly makes a difference in the quality and comfort of the shoes. Sarah Flint herself spends hours identifying the best artisans with the best experience in the world to construct these elegant shoes. 

I’ve always been drawn to and inspired by women owned brands, and the Sarah Flint brand is no different.  If you are looking for a beautiful pair of handcrafted shoes that will last you forever, then Sarah Flint should be your go-to brand.  Not only will you look and feel gorgeous, but you can feel good about supporting a brand that is so supportive of women and talented artisans. 

You can receive $50 off your first pair of Sarah Flint shoes by using the code : SARAHFLINT-BASHANNONS. 

Happy shopping!

Slainte,

Shannon 

HOME: TODDLER GIRL ROOM

One of the biggest projects we are tackling this spring is converting our current guest room/catch all room into Lilly’s big girl room.  The nursery is already blue and white, so I really don’t have to do much besides swap out some artwork and the wall of wallpaper to make it original to baby brother.  Thankfully that leaves me more time to spend on making Lilly’s room special for her.  

My inspiration for this room is really coming from two sources. The first is from Caitlin Wilson Design. This is one of my favorite interior designers to follow and in the past year she launched a kids collection that is full of preppy florals and bows. The entire collection is just darling. Because we have so many home projects and a new baby on the way, I’m trying to be economical about my purchases. I may only buy a one or two pieces from the Caitlin Wilson line, but most of the items I purchase will be inspired by their beautiful style.

The second form of inspiration is Lilly herself.  Lilly is quite the vivacious two year old who is just so full of life.  She is such a bright light in our lives and I want her room to reflect her bold, lively nature.  Lilly and I both chose this gorgeous, bright floral watercolor wallpaper for one wall in her room.  Lilly’s favorite colors are purple and blue and this watercolor is the perfect blend of her favorite colors. The walls are currently white with a white chair rail down the middle.  I want to keep the room bright, but I do want some color.  I’m going to pull the lightest shade of pink from the wallpaper and paint the upper half of the walls in this color, which turns out is a sweet light pink – a perfect representation of Lilly’s sweet side.  

Because I feel sort of bad about kicking Lilly out of the nursery (she loves her room!), I’m trying to make her big girl room as special as possible.  So I’ve been asking her to help me in some of the decisions, like the wallpaper and paint colors.  I’ve been showing her options for bedding and artwork and I let her choose her favorites (for a two and a half year old she is very in tune to what she likes!). 

Below is a mood board I quickly created to help visual the direction I’m going with the room. Although the colors are slightly different from the Caitlin Wilson Designs, I think the direction I’m going still matches the floral, girly, and classic look of the Caitlin Wilson rooms that I love so much, but match Lilly’s beautiful personality.

Floral Wallpaper | Toddler Bed | Caitlin Wilson Quilt Floral Pillow | Lavender Bedding | White Dresser | Lamp | Floral Artwork 

Slainte,

Shannon

SOLTY FRIDAY’S 03.12

I feel a renewed sense of life and inspiration this week with the spring-like weather! I know it’s going to end (40s and snow forecasted next week, yuck!!), but L and I have enjoyed being outside as much as possible and it’s given us energy and joy that we haven’t felt in months.  Even though we’ve been busy playing, I’ve rounded up some friday favorites and I’m sharing them below!

> If you follow me on Instagram, you will know that I’ve been craving orange juice and lemonade throughout this pregnancy.  Although I love both, they are both very high in sugar, and although I’m eating sugar occasionally with this pregnancy, I’m trying to cut refined sugars where I can.  I recently became aware of an Ohio based sparkling tea company called Spritz Tea.  The tea is bubbly but zero sugar, non-alcoholic, and only real ingredients.  I’ve been trying them out all week and they are a great alternative to the juices and lemonade I’ve been craving.  Check them out by clicking here and use the code TRYSPRITZ to receive 10% off your order! 

P.s. these would pair deliciously with vodka or gin for a yummy summer cocktail!

> I’ve been shopping for some small sweet items to fill up Lilly’s Easter basket. Click here to see what I bought her!

> This week on the blog I shared my (very small) plans for growing a flower garden this summer.  To celebrate this new project, I paired up with two fellow garden lovers to host a giveaway on our Instagrams! Head on over to my page to enter to win a gardening kit.  Giveaway ends today!

> One of my favorite Ohio based coastal brands is Shore Society. The spring line was just released last week and it’s so good. I’m seriously in love with this new sweatshirt.

> My latest home decor obsession is Home Again with the Fords. I’ve been following Leanne and Steve Ford for several years and I adore their style.  They are back with a new show where they restore people’s childhood homes in Pittsburgh.  Although their design style is not coastal, I love and appreciate their design decisions so much.  They always make me remember and appreciate why I love design and art.  And Leanne’s fashion choices remind me so much of my time in New York – I love! The show airs on HGTV.

> My friend Stephanie from Linen and Littles is sharing an incredibly brave post this week.  Stephanie is living with MS and she often shares her journey on her blog and Instagram.  This week in particular is MS Awareness Week and Stephanie shared a very powerful glimpse into what it’s been like living with MS, especially with two young toddlers.  Click here for the read. 

On the Blog Lately

Slainte,

Shannon

HOME: PLANNING A FLOWER GARDEN

Spring is just around the corner and I’m more than ready to get outside and try my hand at gardening! I think one of the best things to come out of 2020 was watching people turn to the earth and mother nature for comfort and peace.  I adored watching some of my favorite people try their hand at gardening.  In fact I enjoyed watching their journey’s so much, that this year I’m embarking on my own journey of starting a flower garden.  

I do have some experience with planting and keeping flowers alive. Every year I buy petunias, begonias, and pansies and plant them in pretty blue planters around the house. I add one new planter each year and last summer I was up to six fairly large planters. In addition to my planters this year, I’m hoping to grow flowers directly from seeds!

I’ve been chatting with blogger friends (looking at you Whitney Caves) and following flower farm accounts to try and learn as much as I can about the art of gardening.  It’s amazing what you can learn by following other bloggers and gardeners.  I’ve also been reading the Cut Flower Farm book from Floret Farm and it’s incredibly helpful.  I had no idea so much planning and organizing went into starting a garden! Although I feel overwhelmed at times, I’m excited to embark on this new journey and challenge myself in new ways. 

My plan for this year is to start small. We are going to build one small raised garden bed (probably 4’ x 4’ x 10.5”). There is a sunny spot on the far side of our deck and gazebo so I think I’m going to place the garden bed there. I’ve gone back and forth between starting the seeds inside and transplanting after the frost, or just directly seeding a few weeks after the first frost. I think I’ve decided on the latter option. It’s definitely a riskier choice, but we don’t have the space or tools to grow seeds inside. So I’m literally going to throw caution to the wind and plant the seeds sometime in late May or early June and hope something grows!

GOALS FOR THE GARDEN 

My goals for this garden are simple.  I truly have no idea how the flowers will grow in our yard and if the placement of the flower bed will yield any harvest.   I’m going into this with zero expectations. But, what I do hope to gain are:

  • Creating beautiful memories planting with L;
  • Learning a new skill;
  • Spending more time outdoors;
  • Finding peace and joy through a new connection with mother nature. 

TYPES OF FLOWERS

I bought all my seeds from Floret Farm.  I had no idea what and how much to buy.  I completely guessed on how many seeds to buy, so there’s a very good chance I will have bought way too little or way too much.  But the types of flowers (and colors) I’m hoping to grow are: 

  • Zinnia Oklahoma Pink
  • Zinnia Lilliput Salmon
  • Zinnia Oklahoma Carmine
  • Zinnia Oklahoma Salmon
  • Cosmos Purity
  • Cosmos Daydream
  • Breadseed Poppy Pink Peony
  • Bells of Ireland
  • Chinese Forget-Me-Not Blue Showers
  • Shirley Poppy Supreme
  • Stock Katz in Bright Rose

FAVORITE GARDEN RESOURCES

Below are a list of accounts and/or blogs that I follow for inspiration and helpful tips. 

There are tons more resources out there for starting a garden, but these are just a few I refer to on a regular basis.

I hope you are excited to follow me on this journey! To kick things off, I’m partnering with two friends to gift a lucky follower a beginner’s gardening kit on my Instagram.  Be sure to follow all of us for the details!

Slainte,

Shannon

SOLTY FRIDAY’S 03.05

Happy Friday! I have some fun Friday favorites for you all today.  Today’s Solty Friday’s is a mix of style, what I’m watching, what I’m shopping for and more.

> If you follow me on Instagram, you’ll know that I’m a brand ambassador for Sarah Flint shoes.  This week the brand just launched the classiest and cutest ballet flats! I’m obsessed with the pink petal color!  Shop them here, and don’t forget, you can receive $50 off your first pair of Sarah Flint shoes by using the code : SARAHFLINT-BASHANNONS.⁠

> This entire week I’ve been binge watching Firefly Lane on Netflix.  I read the book a few years ago and thoroughly enjoyed it.  I’m equally enjoying the tv version.  If you like drama, family, and stories about best friends, oh and 70s, 80s, and 90s fashion, then you’ll love this show.

> I haven’t been shopping for regular clothes because, well you know, pregnant. But I did go on the J.Crew Factory site this week and I now have about five things in my shopping car. So many cute spring styles. Shop my favorite looks here.

> If there is one item on my wish list for spring, it’s this gorgeous blue and white floral nap dress from Hill House. If you are a follower of fashion bloggers, you will know this dress is all the rage.  Apparently it’s beautiful quality and fits perfectly.  And rumor has it that it’s bump friendly.  Definitely something I’m keeping my eye on the next few weeks. 

> This week we noticed that our master bedroom vanity sink is leaking.  Our vanity is actually an old wood dresser – cute in concept but the wood top is completely ruined from water over the years (it came with the house).  We have to replace it so I’m currently shopping for double vanities and boy are they expensive!  We are talking $1500-$3000 for a decent double vanity.  Once we narrow down some options I’ll be sure to share.

> I picked out two different options of wallpaper for Lilly’s big girl room and an option for baby boy’s room.  Luckily the nursery is already pretty neutral so swapping out the wallpaper and some artwork is the only thing I have to do.  Here are links to the options I’m looking at: option 1 for L, option 2 for L, option for baby boy. 

> If you love gardening or have an interest in wishing to become a gardener, then be sure to pop by my Instagram next week for something exciting! 

Slainte,

Shannon

MOTHERHOOD: THREE THINGS I’VE DONE FOR MY MENTAL HEALTH WHILE PREGNANT DURING COVID

This isn’t a typical post for me to write.  Typically I keep my blog writing to classic style, home decor projects, and fun activities with L.  But this topic has been heavy on my heart and I feel called to share my experience.

Navigating pregnancy can be challenging for any mama, but throw in a global pandemic and a cold, gray winter and you have a recipe for an exceptionally difficult transition! Any woman who is newly pregnant probably experiences numerous types of anxiety and uncertainty.  Not only is your body changing, but your hormones are raging, you are exhausted, possibly nauseous, and on top of all that you are preparing to welcome a sweet new baby! It’s quite a whirlwind for nine months (and beyond – don’t forget the fourth trimester!).

I thought it would be easy being pregnant my second time around because I knew what to expect.  What I didn’t experience in my first pregnancy that I experienced in the first trimester of this pregnancy were mental and emotional challenges.   They say every pregnancy is different and that 100% holds true.  I really struggled those first 12-14 weeks.  Not only did I physically feel awful (nauseous, exhausted, so many food aversions), but I also felt mentally drained, uninspired, sad, grumpy, anxious, and just overall not myself.  Some days were very challenging and it took everything in me just to make it to bedtime.  I often would ask Rob if I would ever feel like myself again (spoiler alert: I do!). 

I do believe that raging hormones, physical discomfort, and the stress of being in the middle of a global pandemic (plus the stress of trying to decide if and how I should get vaccinated) really took its toll.  I’m so thankful everyday that I have such a supportive hubby and family.

I’m sure many other women experience these feelings at one time or another during their pregnancy.  I had to dig deep within myself to find ways to fight through this difficult time.  I’m hoping that by talking about the mental and emotional challenges that some women face during pregnancy and offering some ideas on how to cope will help other mamas feeling the same.  Before I share the things that worked for me, I want to remind anyone experiencing emotional or mental pain, to please reach out to your doctor or a trusted source for help.  

Below are three things I would try to do to center myself and find the joy in being pregnant. 

  1. Yoga – Yoga is so healing for your mind, body, and soul.  Whenever I need to re-center myself, I grab my yoga mat and just breathe.  I subscribe to the Yoga with Adrienne App and she offers some great prenatal workouts that are safe for mama and baby. 
  1. Communicate – Talk it out.  I can’t stress this enough.  I shared how I was feeling with Rob, my family, friends, my gynecologist – anyone who I felt safe talking to and it made a huge difference.  I am so thankful for a strong support system that listened to me and provided guidance when I was feeling my lowest.
  1. Get Outside – Even though some days it was really hard to get outside, I would try and get some fresh air, even if it was walking to the mailbox and back.  Fresh air can clear your mind and give you a fresh perspective and even if I only went outside for a few minutes, I always came back inside feeling a little more like myself. 

I also recommend that pregnant women rest as much as possible, eat what tastes good, and drink lots of fluids.  Being pregnant with a toddler and working part time is definitely not easy.  I napped whenever Lilly napped and went to bed early every night.  Getting enough sleep and rest during the first trimester really is so important. 

I hope this post helps just one other mama-to-be who needs some extra love and encouragement.  And always remember, you have a beautiful human growing inside of you and your body is amazing to be able to do that! 

Slainte,

Shannon

STYLE: MATERNITY VS. NON-MATERNITY

Back when I was pregnant with Lilly, I shared this blog post about my favorite maternity staples.  It was warm weather season during my second and third trimesters with Lilly so I mostly wore dresses.  The majority of this pregnancy is during the winter, so it’s been interesting to see how differently my style has been.  These days the only types of clothes I feel like wearing are leggings, oversized sweaters, and dresses.  It’s a little difficult to wear dresses in Ohio in January and February, especially when there is 16 inches of snow on the ground, but pants are just not comfortable for me right now!  

In my blog post I wrote back in 2018, I focused on my favorite maternity staples. This blog post focuses on what styles I buy maternity and what styles I buy non-maternity.

Pants/Denim

Once I start showing, I switch to maternity pants. However, I’ve never loved maternity jeans. But I also can’t stand wearing my regular pants once that bump makes its appearance. I’ve tried so many different brands and this time around I finally settled on two pairs of treggings (leggings with pockets that look like jeans) from H&M. They are more comfortable than denim jeans and still appropriate to wear in public. I did find a great pair of white denim jeans on Amazon and so far they are fairly comfortable. My favorite places to buy maternity pants are Gap Maternity, Pink Blush Boutique (they have the best leggings), and H&M.

Dresses 

When I’m shopping for dresses, I usually buy a mix of maternity and non-maternity styles. For maternity styles, I love to shop at Pink Blush. They just fit so perfectly. If I’m looking for a looser fit, I typically shop my normal stores (J.Crew Factory, Gap, Old Navy, Amazon, small businesses) and just go up one size. Once I’m done being pregnant, I plan on getting the non-maternity styles taken in to fit my post baby body.

Tees/Tops

For t-shirts, I tend to go for fitted, maternity styles.  I love to shop Target, Gap Maternity, and Old Navy.  For flowy blouses and tops, I do a mix of maternity and non-maternity.  Again, I just size up if I’m wearing non-maternity.

Lounge wear/Pajamas

It feels like I’ve been living in lounge wear and pajamas.  For these styles I do a mix of maternity and non-maternity.  Things like sweatshirts and sweatpants, I just size up one size in non-maternity styles.  But for items like nightgowns and pajama sets, I tend to purchase maternity.  Many maternity styles can transition to nursing and that is a huge plus.  I love to get my maternity nightgowns and pajama sets from Lake Pajamas or Pink Blush. 

I’ve broken styles down into a list to better help you in your decision making and shopping.

Maternity

Brands: Gap Maternity, H&M Maternity, Old Navy, Pink Blush, and Target 

Styles:

  • Leggings
  • Dress Pants
  • Denim Jeans
  • Shorts
  • Fitted Dresses
  • Fitted Tees
  • Loungewear/Nightgowns
  • Undergarments (bras and panties)

Non-Maternity

Brands: J.Crew Factory, Old Navy, Amazon, Target, Small Boutiques

Styles:

  • Dresses
  • Loungewear/Nightgowns 
  • Oversized tunics
  • Oversized blouses 

Some other maternity brands to check out:

I know this isn’t a crazy detailed list, but hopefully it provides some general direction if you are pregnant and not sure what and where to buy. 

Slainte,

Shannon

SOLTY FRIDAY’S 2.12

We are feeling so much love and excitement this week! There has been so much joy during a time that can often feel dark, never ending, and isolating.  So thank you, to all of you, for making us feel so special this week.  Below are this week’s Solty Friday’s!

> This Valentine’s Day, you better believe we will be spending it watching the new show on Starz starring Sam Heughan called Men in Kilts.  It’s going to be an epically hilarious adventure around Scotland and I cannot wait. 

> I have a love-hate relationship with maternity clothing.  The baby blue dress I posted on my IG today is a great non-maternity Amazon find that is perfect for a growing bump. 

> We started teaching Lilly word recognition and have been using these flashcards.  So far she’s loving this “game.” 

> The new Endless Summer Notecard Collection from Jen Strandberg Studio is my new favorite way to stay organized and make to-do lists. Her coastal watercolors are beautiful on this new line of stationary. Be sure to check out her shop and get 15% off with code SHANNON15!

> I shared these adorable LOVE sweatshirts from my friend Meg’s Boutique, Meg & Marie.  These sweatshirts are sooo comfy and so cute!  There are three adult styles and two children styles to choose from, along with various color options.  Definitely a must if you have a little! You can see how L and I styled ours here

> Although we are beyond excited for baby boy, like every pregnancy, we have some new anxieties and fears.  Lemon Stripes wrote an article about her fears around having a second baby and it 100% rang true for me.  Read the blog post here

> Like many, I’m obsessed with the Liberty Prints line from J.Crew (mini floral and paisley abstract prints).  This headband was $15 this week so you better believe it’s now a part of my headband collection. 

Recently on the Blog

> Baby #2 Announcement 

> Indoor Toddler Activities

> Crewneck Sweater, Three Ways

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Slainte,

Shannon