Next month I have the trickiest of sartorial conundrums: a church wedding in the English countryside. A difficult decision at the best of times bearing in mind the weather, two venues and not always been sure of how formal an event might be. Add in the need for it to be breastfeeding friendly as well and it’s quite the challenge.

Step in Lyst. Have you heard of it? A clever mix of technology and algorithms, the more you shop and search, the more tailored the choices. Instead of having to scroll through lots of different shops (both in terms of remembering the options and then selecting them) Lyst combines them all in one place – in the majority of instances you can do one check out from multiple shops.

Breastfeeding friendly wedding outfit - The Little Pip
I’ve picked out some pieces that I think would work well for this wedding and which I am coveting, particularly the shoes and the jacket. I love the summery print of this dress – lightweight but long sleeves, which I would wear pushed back under the bracelet length jacket sleeves. The dress itself is skimming for a post-partum figure with the all important buttons for easy breastfeeding.

For a more casual church wedding, I think wedge sandals and a sun hat work nicely. A nod to a formal setting and a hat for a wedding, but also practical. I would probably change the ribbon to something plainer or a better clashing print to match the dress. The more formal jacket then smartens up the whole outfit whilst still being summery and, importantly, adds a layer of warmth in the church.

Cream boucle wool jacket by Blue&CreamClassic brown wedge sandal by A.P.C.  | Cream Talitha floral print Meryl dress by GhostRustic taupe straw sun hat by Paul Smith

Collaborative post

DriveNow Review - The Little Pip

DriveNow is a London car club perfect for short local journeys. Based in Haringey, Islington, Hackney and Waltham Forest, we thought it would align perfectly for one of our favourite things to do on a Sunday morning: Columbia Road Flower Market followed by coffee, a little retail therapy and then lunch. Timed right, we get down there before the crowds by driving in the early morning nap and we come back during the post lunch nap.

We were invited to test the 290 strong fleet of Minis and BMWs and see what we made of using a London car club with kids. Truthfully, whilst I can and do drive, I was grateful that husband is (a) used to and happy driving in London and (b) used to driving myriad rental cars, so he wasn’t in the slightest bit concerned about driving an unfamiliar car, so he stepped up as test driver.

Drive Now BMW 2 - The Little Pip

Once the sign up process is completed, it’s pretty instant to find and use a car. You can reserve it on the app for 15 minutes, or, you can walk straight up and use your card to open it and begin the rental. Once you’ve got the card, it’s perfect for short, spur of the moment journeys, or for getting to London places which are a little tricky – like Crouch End to Hackney, which is a bus, tube, overland kind of trip. Not something I am a fan of doing with 2 children and in the rain.

The actual sign up process is super easy too – there’s a registration system, then you do a driving licence check, snap a photo of your licence and pose for a selfie, and upload it all to the app. My customer card arrived the next day. So, a little organisation required, but you could still sign up on Wednesday and be taking your first drive that same weekend.

Drive Now BMW - The Little Pip

Columbia Road Flower Market opens at 8am so perfect for an early morning trip. Despite not having anything that could be described as a lie in, getting ready with 2 kids always seems to take an age though and we weren’t out as early as you’d think when the morning started at 6am. Once we were ready though, instead of having to trail to the bus stop and wait for ages for a Sunday bus, we simply opened the app, reserved a car and then literally hopped in.

We took the baby in his car seat which fastens in with a seat belt, and for Pip we used the booster seat that the BMW 1 series and Minis have onboard. We folded the wheels of the pram into the boot, which was also super easy as the boot was entirely empty… I don’t think I’ve seen an entirely empty boot in our own car since we bought it, which means loading in the pram is often like playing some kind of spacial awareness game.

The other thing I liked about the BMW we tested is that it had a built in navigation system. We simply programmed in the road where we wanted to park and it told us where to drive. Perhaps everyone has one of these now but I usually have to navigate, so it was a pleasant change to simply sit there and have M drive following the system. And then, when we arrived, we didn’t have to worry about parking – we simply found a space, got out, and ended the rental.

Columbia Road Flower Market - The Little Pip

Columbia Road Flower Market 2- The Little Pip

Pip has inherited my love for peonies, so naturally our first stop had to be wondering up and down the market looking for the nicest pink ones. Flowers safely in hand, we escaped the pouring rain by sitting at the back of our favourite cafe for a while with coffee. We then picked up some essentials for our holiday next week (an enamel cup for Pip to match our ones and a little beach basket) and had lunch at Sager & Wilde before heading back home.

The verdict: using DriveNow with kids – EASY!

  • Sign up and registration fast and through the app (and the card arrived the next day)
  • 69% of the fleet have booster seats on board – just filter by car type on the app to find the nearest appropriate car
  • Perfect for even a short journey as you pay by the minute (from just 29p!) & you can pop the car into any parking bay as long as you’re in Islington, Haringey, Hackney or Waltham Forest without worrying about paying or using a residents bay.
  • Great for avoiding the sudden downpours we are having at the moment. Jump in and drive home!
  • Plenty of back seat space and boot space for 2 car seats and a pram in the back (we tested the BMW 1 series).
  • Great alternative to a hire car – I am thinking this will be fantastic for Copenhagen as we can use the app in Copenhagen too.

DriveNow have very kindly given The Little Pip readers the chance to try out DriveNow personally. That link will let you register free – so try it out yourself and see what you think!

Sponsored post – all opinions my own

 

Peonies & Roses - The Little Pip

As anyone who follows my on Instagram cannot failed to have noticed, I’m massively in love with peonies. And roses. And flowers in general. As May dwindles into the distant past and the cow parsley and the hawthorn fade, June arrives with an abundance of peonies and roses. Perhaps it is the alternate sun and rain we’ve been having for the past few weeks but everything is looking beautiful at the moment. Plus, this week is British Flower Week, so what an excellent week to celebrate my favourite flowers.

Peonies Bloom & Wild - The Little Pip

My camera roll is absolutely full of pink and white flowers.  I am particularly enamoured with the peonies that I was sent by Bloom & Wild. They opened beautifully, are the type that is soft and fluffy with hundreds of petals like feathers, smell divine and lasted a week before the first petals started to drop. These are the Lottie and if you click this link you can get £10 off your bunch. Quick – before peony season has faded and we are into the summer properly. Thankfully my husband is on board with my peony obsession and views them much like asparagus – buy locally and seasonally and gorge for the few short weeks that they are around. If you haven’t ordered from Bloom & Wild before you must try them out: the flowers arrive on the date of your choosing in a flat brown cardboard box which fits through the letterbox and the flowers are individually packed and then tied with a beautiful bow. A real treat!

Peonies Bloom & Wild 2- The Little Pip

June is also the month that the roses in the garden start blooming. I love my roses (but thankfully have not yet reached American Beauty lengths) – I inherited this love from my grandmother, so it seemed natural that when she died I would buy a rose to remember her. I chose Gertrude Jeckyll as I remember her garden as full of pink and scented blooms. When M’s grandmother died last summer, I chose Gentle Hermione. For Pip, born in 2012, I have Royal Jubilee – created in 2012 and bright pink – perfect for Pip. I cut them and bring them inside as I generally enjoy them more that way but I enjoy them outside as I’ve got them in pots next to the bench where I can sit with my coffee. Don’t get me started on the aphids and slugs though…

Peonies and roses - The Little Pip

Pip and I also like to look at other people’s gardens, frequently stopping to admire and smell. We also keep our eyes out in the park and along our route to school for severed blooms – we have acquired some stunning ones this way, the product of other people’s carelessness or vandalism. Where there is no stalk left, we simply float them in a dish or saucer of water.

I am part of the Bloom & Wild Wildflower collective and was sent the Lottie bouquet. Other peonies I bought at Columbia Road Flower Market; Roses grown by me or found by Pip.