Thursday, 30 June 2016

Baking with Little Ones: Unicorn Poo Cookies

Baking with Little Ones is officially going to become a monthly blog post, and I'm excited to share what we baked this month!

I'll start by saying this one is a little time consuming, so if you have older kiddos who are at that play dough sculpting stage of their lives, this is perfect for them. For toddlers it's a little harder, but I have hints below on how to accomplish it anyway.

 
I've been getting lots of wear out of these matching soda pop skirts from Pigtails and Pirates and had to wear them in all their colorful glory when we made these. 






Recipe:

3 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 egg, beaten
1 tablespoon milk
Powdered sugar, for rolling out dough

Directions:

Sift together flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside. Place butter and sugar in large bowl of electric stand mixer and beat until light in color. Add egg and milk and beat to combine. Put mixer on low speed, gradually add flour, and beat until mixture pulls away from the side of the bowl.

Divide the dough into 6 and dye each dough ball a different color of the rainbow. Then divide each of those into 16 little balls and refrigerate. After half an hour or so (you just need them to firm up) take them out of the refrigerator. Take one of each color of dough and roll it out into a log (haha...log) and then twist all 6 little logs together and form them into a beautiful little unicorn poo. Once you've done all 10 cookies, sprinkle with anything pretty and bake at 375 F for 8 minutes.
 








 
Don't do what I did. I made 8 cookies and they were huge! Whilst I love super soft cookies (which is what they have to be if you make them as big as I did) I kept eating a whole cookie at a time and getting sick. Be smarter than me. Also, don't add m&ms like I did. I Selene spent half her time helping with the cookies and the other half eating the m&ms. It made for cute pictures though!
 
I used this adorable tutorial : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m_W6IZjIi9g This girl has the best recipes, including Disney and Harry Potter yummies, so be sure to check her out!
 
Now for some tips on adapting this recipe for little ones - 
  • If baking with a toddler, completely prepare the dough and dough balls and refrigerate them. Then when they are chilled enough to work with, have your toddler shape them into logs and form the cookies. If they are fans of play dough then they probably already do things like this anyway. 
  • If baking with an older little one, have them make the recipe with you, then send them off to play while you dye the dough and chill it. Less mess and less clean up to do if you do it that way! Then have them shape it as above.
  • And as always, if you understandably do not have the time to fiddle with all of this, then just buy some pre-made dough and work with that. In this all organic, baby-food making world we live in, sometimes women forget time with your children is more important than anything else. They will live if they consume something not made with the tears of baby angels and

And if you don't have little ones? Make them anyway! Have a girls night and eat half the cookie dough first and then Disney Movies on the sofa and eat your beautiful rainbow poo cookies. Or make them with your partner. Or have your partner make them for you because you're having a bad day and you need rainbow cookies. Doesn't just looking at them make you happy?

Thank you so much for reading. I know these baking posts are different from the usual reviews and matching outfits, so I would love feedback as to whether these are helpful or interesting at all!

xo Miss Betty Doll
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Wednesday, 29 June 2016

Wishlust Wednesday - Pastels and Powderpuffs

So my artist / game animator husband advised me my Wishlust Wednesdays looked terribly unprofessional and spent a few minutes perdy-ing it up for me. Thanks handsome <3

My wishlist is so unimaginably long right now. From discovering that the Ophelia Dress from Lindybop can work for me and therefore making me want them all, to receiving a Hearts and Found skirt and now wanting the whole shop, I just can't stop lusting after all the pretty things!


I try to stick with 5 items per Wishlust Wednesday post, but it was especially hard this time. Here's what I'm currently craving for my closet!

A - Lola Skirt in "Tea Time in the Rose Garden" by Hearts and Found - After receiving my first Hearts and Found piece a few weeks ago, I have yet to place another order because there are just too many choices! This one is currently at the top of my list because of the floral border (I love those) and the black background. I love wearing things in my wardrobe year round, and the roses mean its spring and summer friendly whilst the black background adds enough drama for winter.

B - "Eat Me" Charm by Disney Couture - I've been a Disney Couture fan for years. I was unique in my Disney obsession growing up, but most of the pinup community shares my obsession so I know you feel me when I say I love Disney themed anything. Selene's second birthday was Alice in Wonderland themed, and this little charm gave me the mushies just looking at it. I also love charm bracelets, so all the boxes are ticked with this one. I don't have much time for accessories at the moment with two little ones to care for, so I can't wait to indulge in some accessories like this one later this year.

C - Powderpuff Top by Vixen by Micheline Pitt - Cinderella, Princess Peach, Christine from Phantom of the Opera, Giselle from Enchanted.. what do they all have in common? Puff Sleeves! I love things with puffy sleeves. I've recently begun to collect Stop Staring dresses for their abundant puff sleeve designs, but these tops by Vixen take the Cake. The actual stock photos show that they are 10x puffier than the drawings show, which has me all kinds of excited. The fabric for these is in production, with current pre-orders hopefully shipping out sometime in August. They are made of a heavy stretch knit fabric and don't have zippers, meaning all you busy ladies can just pulll them on and go. Ah!

D - Black Shoulder Bow Top by Pinky Pinups - I found this shop through the amazing ladies at Junebugs and Georgia Peaches and I've fallen in love! Bows and off shoulder designs are favourites of mine, so combining the two has just made my dreams come true. When warmer weather rolls around here in the Southern Hemisphere I will definitely be giving this top a try.

E - Mary Blair Lips and Roses Skirt in Blue by Pinup Couture - I own this baby in pink and it's my favourite skirt. Seeing it in this beautiful blue hue has me tossing up between which one I love more. Make it pink! Make it blue! Make it.... into my closet right this second. I keep imagining it with the Powderpuff Top in White for Spring and the Vixen Top in Black for Winter.

I pin current wants to my Pinterest regularly, so if you're a fellow pinner then please sent me a link to yours!

Thanks for reading <3

xo Miss Betty Doll
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Sunday, 26 June 2016

Betty Le Bonbon Swing Skirt Review - Get It Before It's Gone!

This is a bittersweet review, as the item I am reviewing is from the beautiful Jasmine of Betty Le Bonbon, which may be permanently shutting down at the end of the year! I placed my first order with her just weeks before this announcement was made, and I'm glad I did so I could squeeze in a review of just one of many of her beautiful products before they disappear.


Betty Le Bonbon skirts, suits and dresses are all custom made according to your measurements. You can get any length you desire, which is great for girls like me to dress in a more modern pinup fashion and prefer skirts shorter than the mid-calf length many vintage-inspired skirts fall to.

I sent Jasmine a request for a darker floral print swing skirt. I have an obsession with florals but sometimes they can be too bright for winter months. I wear much of my wardrobe year round, but I try to keep the fruit and bright floral prints for sunnier months.

Jasmine sent through over 20 different fabric options, and was very patient with my requests, honing in on what I was really after until we found a print that worked for me. I requested a 25 inch length skirt, which falls just below my knees, and we added half an inch to my waist measurement for breathing room towards the end of the day when all the munchies have been consumed.

The skirt fit perfectly once it arrived (thank you custom measurements!). It features a hook and eye closure and a super wide waistband. I popped my usual little petticoat underneath, but I think I may grab a super fluffy Malco Modes petticoat soon to really give it some oomph! Swing skirts like this one don't have gathers at the waist, so I like to fluff them out as much as possible to give me that little waisted silhouette I know we retro girls all love.




Jasmine will be returning to study full-time shortly, so she is now requesting that any orders are to be placed before 30th September this year. She may or may not be taking orders from existing customers after that, as she will be one busy lady once her studies commence and taking orders from customers that know how her business works and know how to order is much more manageable than asking questions and guiding new customers through the process. So if you want a skirt (or a dress or a suit!) made just for you in one of the many, many fabric choices available, then get in touch with Betty Le Bonbon via bettylebonbon@gmail.com . Her fabric options can be views via her facebook page , and her instagram is always full of beautiful outfit inspiration (including her Kate Spade bag obsession) so be sure to check that out too!


Supporting local businesses is very important. You will generally pay more, but you are getting customer service and a custom fit that just can't be bought with larger retailers. You are also getting high quality products and almost always helping to support a worthy soul. Many times there is a strong woman helping to support her family or even supporting her family or herself on her own. Jas has a beautiful little boy that she is raising into the perfect gentleman, Skye from Hellpixie has a gorgeous little girl that she gets to be with as a result of her business, and there are several  other women that I follow on instagram and purchase from regularly for clothes and accessories for my little girls. I used to never buy locally or from smaller businesses, thinking mass produced garments were easier to gauge the quality and fit of. Now I'm a total convert, and I hope you can be too!

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Friday, 24 June 2016

Matching Mother Daughter Outfits - Gingham Love in Hearts and Found

Fun fact - photos of myself for a blog post take about 5 minutes to take. Photos with my toddler take about 20. Photos with my youngest daughter take about the same. Photos with both of them, happy... up to 3 days of putting them in the outfits I need to shoot, over and over again, until I get something I am happy with. Yay!

The 3 day rule was no issue with these beautiful matching skirts from Hearts and Found, however - I wanted to dress us in these outfits over and over and over again, and found that I had naturally reached to put the skirts on all of us several times of my own accord, without even remembering I still needed that all important photo of my girls together in them.


Anyhoo, I'd like to switch it up a bit with this review, and start right at the very beginning with my customer service experience because it was so lovely! After browsing around for some new retro repro brands to try, Hearts and Found came up over and over again and I knew I needed to see what they had on offer. Marjorie Mabelle, the face of Hearts and Found, responded very quickly. She advised that though they do not currently make children's clothing, she would love to have a couple of skirts whipped up for my girls. After taking the measurements of all three of us, she ensured our garments were completed within a week. She was the epitome of customer service perfection from beginning to end, and if you check out her beaming smile on her Etsy profile, you will understand what I mean.





I was so excited by the quality when our little package arrived. Having read several reviews of their clothing, I knew what to expect with mine - but given that they do not currently have a children's line, I was amazed at the little details on Selene and Aurora's skirts. The sturdy fabric is also lined, and their little skirts have just as many gathers as my own, all held together by a thick waistband. I'm so happy there are so many gathers on their skirts, as it allows them to stretch much farther than other skirts in their tiny wardrobes, so I know they will fit my girls for longer.

Marjorie has advised Hearts and Found would like to start making girl's skirts more regularly, so if you have a little one you would like to get one for, just send her a message!


As for me, the fit was perfect. You can either order via standard sizing or give Marjorie your measurements. I gave her my measurements because I was already doing a custom order with the girls' skirts.

The waistband is thicker than most of my gathered skirts, which I love because it means it won't fold over itself when you've gone and eaten one too many tacos. I popped a medium fluff petticoat underneath, but during summer I could easily wear this with a tank top and no petti for a "throw on and go" outfit.




Averaging at $50USD a pop, these skirts are seriously inexpensive. Coupled with the lovely customer service, the custom sizing and the quality perfection, you really can't go wrong with this brand! They have sarong dresses, two pieces, and a myriad of top options for their dresses with gathered skirts. There are also lots of solid colors, so if you are a Pinup Girl Clothing Jenny Skirt fan and can't find a color you like, this is a trusted source to get alternative colors for your gathered skirt collection. They source their fabrics from family and small businesses in their local markets, so you know you are not only getting bang for your buck, but you are supporting those who need it.

I will be starting up Wishlust Wednesdays again, and you can bet there will be lots of Hearts and Found in those posts!

Thanks for reading.

Until next time,
xo, Miss Betty Doll
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Sunday, 19 June 2016

Unique Vintage Delores Dress Review

In the past, sleeved retro dresses that were comfortable enough for day to day wear were few and far between. Obviously our favourite brands have been listening to our long sleeved woes, because bengaline beauties like the Delores Swing Dress by Unique Vintage have been cropping up everywhere!

 
From what I can see, the red went on sale recently and is now out of stock, but it is still available in ivory, black pin dots and more! The link above will lead you to all the Delores' currently in stock.

This dress is flattering in the way only bengaline fabric can be. It stretches over all of your curves to give the illusion of a tiny waist. Some stretch fabrics can be unforgiving - sitting in your creases and doing your body no favours. That is definitely not the case with this dress. The fabric is heavy enough to keep the chill at bay and keep your skirt from flying up in the breeze, but gives enough to move with you.



Details like buttons at the cuffed sleeves and gathering at the bust give this dress a little something special, and the concealed zip up the back makes it easy to wiggle into.

Size wise, I ordered a size small and it fits very well. I suggest ordering your standard size, as the extreme stretch in the fabric means it's sure to fit you.

You can fit any size petticoat under this one, so feel free to fluff it up. Also, it is breastfeeding friendly. I would also say it is maternity friendly depending on the size of your bump, as the seam where the skirt and bodice meet is not as stretchy as the rest of the dress, but it's so thin you don't even notice it unless you are trying to stretch significantly past it's normal limit.


(As many photographers will testify, I am notoriously bad at spinning shots. I think it took me over 50 to get this semi-decent one. A girl can try, ya know?)



The only complaint that I have is the bust of the dress plunges a little further than I am comfortable with - and we all know I love cleavage, so that's saying something. A cami underneath is a quick fix, or if you want a more permanent solution you can opt for a little stitch at the centre of the bust like I did. If you are smaller chested than this probably won't be an issue for you. If you are bigger up top, then don't hesitate to order this dress! The fixes I mentioned will take care of you.

Until next time,

xo, Miss Betty Doll
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Tuesday, 14 June 2016

Unique Vintage Leopard Maxi Dress

There have been times when I have wanted to stray from my comfort zone of circle skirts and 50's silhouettes, and the first thing I did was consult google for images of Dita von Teese in anything similar, as a way of comforting myself that if she wore something like it, then I could too. Your style should be about what makes you comfortable, but as a newbie pinup, sometimes I lacked the confidence to just make decisions for myself.

This was absolutely not one of those times. The second I saw this Leopard Print Maxi from Unique Vintage, I knew I had to have it, and I didn't give a damn if it was keeping with the retro style I loved or not. It was leopard print and sexy, and therefore it had to be mine. Plus, at only $78 USD, it cost half of what most of my dresses do.



The first time I wore it, I did so with a quick bun and ran out the door. There was something liberating about not fussing about with a petticoat or non-stretch skirt and top. No zippers, no shimmying no shapewear even! The dress itself is so glamorous and effortless that very little was required on my part to complete the look.



The next time I wore it, it was with second day, brushed out hair. My husband, who hadn't actually seen me in the dress yet, got all kinds of excited. It's not often he sees me in anything form-fitting or different from my usual dress sense, and he has declared that this is his absolute favourite dress of mine. Get one for yourself and you will see why!

I am wearing a size small, and it fits me perfectly. The material is super stretchy (thus the ease of wear) so you can easily order your own size or size down if it happens to be out of stock. It only comes in sizes small, medium, and large, but I would say XL or 2XL ladies could easily fit into a size L, and any of you XS ladies could get away with a size small.



The dress flows away from the tummy at just the right area to not need shapewear, and we all know that wrap dresses are universally flattering anyway.

This isn't actually the first time I've worn a dress like this - I reviewed this one in red last year. I like this one even more though, as the print adds the right amount o glam and attitude, and also hides any "imperfections" ( are muffin tops really imperfections, or just a beautiful thing that happens after too many cupcakes?).

It is a little on the long side, and I have worn comfortable wedges with it each time I have worn it. If you want it for a super casual style, I would say get it hemmed if you are 5'6" or below. Otherwise, it works wonderfully with wedges and heels.  


Also, for you fellow mamas out there - it is super breast-feeding and maternity friendly! If I have more kiddos I will definitely be rocking this dress often. As it is now, I have to stop myself from wearing it ever day.

So, if the above hasn't sold you on this dress, let me wrap this up by saying it is absolutely amazing and needs to be on your body asap. Order it - you won't regret it.
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Saturday, 11 June 2016

Matching Mother Daughter Outfits - Lindybop Kids in Route 66 Review!

Amidst a million other (far deeper) thoughts that I had when I found out I was having a second girl, one thing that did come to mind was "I am definitely going to need to discover more retro kids clothing brands". Dressing Selene like me was easy when there was just one girl to match. They know me by name at Pumpkin Patch because I frequent there so often, and so matching Selene to myself was almost always as easy as walking in there, picking out a dress like mine and walking out. But with two little girls it's a different ballgame. Aurora being two years younger than Selene meant that clothes for her that matched my own wouldn't be available in Selene's size and vise versa.

Enter Lindybop Kids clothing line.

I saw their little girl's dresses right before Aurora was born, but didn't order any yet as their babywear is only available in sizes 3-6 months and up. I went ahead and ordered recently, risking getting Aurora a size 3-6 months dress in the Route 66 Baby Lindyset and Selene an 18-24 months Route 66 Audrey Dress, even though Aurora isn't even 3 months old yet and Selene is almost 2.5 years old.








Despite the sizing challenges I thought I would face, when they arrived I was surprised to find both girl's dresses were a near perfect fit. Aurora is completely average in size, as is Selene, with both falling around the 50 percentile in height and a little below that in weight.


Aurora's dress was nice and roomy around the waist and arms and falls just to her tiny knees, which says to me that the Lindysets run just a little small, heightwise, and about average in width. I would say order up, as Aurora fits so well into the 3-6 months range in the Lindysets and she isn't even 3 months yet. They come with diaper covers (not shown here) which take care of how short the dresses are, and in any case I have a feeling they make the dresses shorter on this style because there are diaper covers with them. It doesn't matter if your tushy is showing if it's covered by a diaper cover anyway!


Selene's dress is roomy around the waist AND length-wise, which means the Audrey dress sizes run just a little big. I would say order true to size with these however, since toddlers grow fast and I know this dress will fit Selene for another year or so thanks to the extra length. It reaches halfway past her knees. 



With regards to quality, I'd say both dresses are of average to good quality. They are lined, with buttons up the back for ease of wear. They are thinner than I would like, but layering the girls up in colder months remedies this. In any case, they seem to be made for warmer weather, and thinner fabric would keep the girls from getting hot in summertime. The cut is thoughtful,flaring out at the waist on both dresses, with details like cap sleeves on the Lindyset and heart buttons on both dresses. At an average of $17USD a pop, these dresses are a total steal. I pay $25 for most of the girls dresses from other brands, and that's on sale!

I will definitely be ordering from Lindybop's babywear line again. I am glad that the Audrey dresses run a little big so Selene will fit into them for quite some time, as after that she will need to order from the actual girl's dresses instead of the babywear line, and those ones don't all match the baby dresses so she and Aurora will need to dress differently when Selene sizes up!  They do, however, perfectly match many of Lindybops adult dresses, which in itself is exciting.

Overall I really do love their babywear line and can't wait to try out their girl's wear. I feel like a kid in the candy store with Lindybop lately, as they are so inexpensive but work so well for me!

I hope you found this review helpful. 

Until next time.

xo, Miss Betty Doll
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