For anyone that feels their bump growing they know one thing for certain – it gets impossible to dress it! As I mentioned in my previous post I tried to squeeze myself into trousers and dresses for a while (not a good look I must admit) until I decided to succumb to the tum! Now I have been searching for feminine maternity pieces, and finding authentic vintage wear has proved a little too difficult.

But fear not, there are plenty of alternatives readily available from high street and designer brands and you don’t need to spend a fortune in the process.  I personally find it a fun challenge to dress and I have even found better things than specific maternity wear- enter the wrap dress!

I accidentally wore a Boden number one day (an old friend used to work for them and gave it to me as a gift) and was the only thing washed that would fit me. Then I realised how comfortable and lovely it felt and decided that was it- I was a woman on a mission to find more!

I have now found quite a few suitable ones including the one I’m wearing below from Zara 

But there are many more to choose from as listed below- I would love to hear about your maternity dress wear tips! Don’t forget to click on the links to directly shop!

Annette xxxx





Collectif Vintage Amaya Velvet Dress


ASOS Frill Detail Wrap Dress


Dorothy Perkins Navy Self Tie Floral Print Wrap Dress


Seraphine Black Floral Silk Wrap Maternity Dress


Isabella Rose Elisha Dress



Early this week I had the pleasure of attending Anna Williamson’s book launch for Breaking Mum and Dad: The Insiders Guide to Parenting Anxiety at the highly exquisite Devonshire Club.

I was there to hear all about the making of the book and some of the topics it covered. There were quite a few young mum and dad’s, experienced ones, new one’s and a few pregnant ladies too so I definitely did not feel alone!

I often can feel quite nervous walking into somewhere on my own but was lucky I met a lovely young woman, Kim, from the Telegraph who gave me a load of baby/parenting tips having had her own a year and a half ago- phew! There were also some other lovely ladies I spoke with and of course I was excited to hear what Anna’s book was all about!

The Devonshire Club were the perfect hosts with delicious canapes, champagne and mocktails for the preggo ladies like me 😉

The book covers so many topics from ‘I’m struggling to love my baby’ to ‘I miss my old life.’ It’s like a therapist in your pocket with contributions by Dr Reeta Newell so it has a medical approach as well as practical advice with ways to cope with low anxiety, low mood and stress.

I can totally relate to this as being pregnant I have absolutely loved the feeling (like to the point I think I could burst with happiness and joy!) but then I get super emotional and have an anxiety attack- how weird is that eh?! I can’t just blame the hormones but I guess it is a whole kaleidoscope of things and learning as I go along (is there a baby school? Please send me now).

Anna Williamson has already written Breaking Mad: An Insiders Guide to Conquering Anxiety and is a life coach, counsellor and Master NLP practitioner so has a wealth of experience. She is also an Ambassador for Mind, Childline and The Princes Trust (as well as a tv presenter and broadcaster!) and I’m so excited to get stuck into this book and hopefully pass on a few tips in later blog posts.

Breaking Mum and Dad is a little pocket guide of empathy, sympathy and above all, hope. And we all need a little bit of that sometimes, don’t we?!

Finding maternity clothes is how can I put it politely? Bonkers! (As well as frustrating, hard work and time consuming).

There’s the maternity leggings and jeans (which kind of make you look like your wearing a nappy 😉 and I am quite feminine so really wanted to find pieces that emulated my style. Also I love vintage styles, especially those of the 1950’s so could I find something that had an essence of this? I had my work cut out for me!

I decided to head to my favourite haunt (where I’ve shopped ever since I was little) Marks and Spencers.

I used to shop in the ‘Over 50’s’ section which is now called ‘Classics’ as their items are pure vintage whilst being very comfortable.

I decided to see if I could put their pieces to the test and find some pregnancy clothes. Now they don’t have a maternity section as such! But one thing I have realised with maternity wear is that as long as there’s stretch and they are not too tight on the waist then you can definitely work around that problem. I have found that wrap dresses work well as do floaty pieces and jersey.

Here are my favourite Marks and Spencers pieces which aren’t maternity wear but could definitely work well for ladies out there who are expecting… Happy shopping 😉

1st Look~ Floral Wrap Dress £39.50

2nd Look- Floral Print Dress £19 (wow! Amazing price)

3rd Look- Floral Dress £15

4th Look- Wrap Dress £45

5th Look- £39.50

As published on Huffington Post UK-

It’s that time of the year, the air changes, our skin starts drying and our emotions can start to feel quite drab. Although there is a certain joy about getting the winter coat on and purchasing a couple of new jumpers (named the back to school kit forever!) it can still feel irksome when the cold winter nights set in.

It has been proven that we lose a lot of our enriching vitamin C at this time of the year and often motivation, so here are my top ten tips to get a spring in your step, whatever the season….

1- Spontaneous plans

It can be quite easy to fall into the tread of everyday existence, wishing the winter months by and dreaming of summer, but it’s a time to be rejoiced. Cherish the colours of the trees through autumn and the crisp December mornings. Take that extra walk even if it’s freezing. It’s also good to switch up your plans a bit. Visit a new obscure place. Call an old friend to catch up. And do something with your weekends! Don’t let life drift by, you don’t have to wish your winter away.

 2- Vitamin overload!

Now is the time to really get your vitamin intake in shape. Doctors can provide a blood test to see what your deficient in as well as iron levels. Supplements can be purchased cheaply but beware of the real rock bottom priced ones (I’ve seen some for 40p for 100!) because they are produced chemically in a factory and contain nothing that is good for you. 5-HTP supplements are great for increasing serotonin and Vitamin B can have a calming effect. If you feel like treating yourself, a nutritionist is also amazing at working out exactly what you need to be the best you.

3- Continue your new years resolutions now!

Make that list, pen out a plan and write down your dreams. Create your own mood board for your dreams and believe in the intention that you will act upon them. Don’t say try, say I will! Break down small tasks that can become bigger tasks. Look at what’s not working and change it, no one’s stopping you from ending something you’re just not into anymore.

4- Start your morning well

The morning is a very important time. Laying the foundations correctly can set the whole day up for happiness, focus and purpose. Waking up and having gratitude for your life and loved ones is a great way to start and too often we forget how lucky we are and throw ourselves out of bed. If you can take a probiotic it will help with digestive wellness, followed by hot lemon water to release toxins and create an energy flow. Simple stretches and leaning over gently to get blood to your head or a brisk walk to get fresh air can clear the head. And in the adopted words of Benjamin Franklin ask yourself, ‘what good am I going to do today?’

5- Cutting out the rubbish!

Earlier this year, I was bedridden with a chronic illness. Throughout this time, I tried many doctors, specialists and everything medicinal in-between but when that didn’t work I turned to naturopathy. I thought I was pretty healthy but my therapist suggested I cut out wheat, dairy, sugar, gluten, carbs and alcohol (to my astonishment at the time!)

Within just one month I had more energy, focus, happiness and creativity- it was physically and emotionally like a cloud had been lifted from my shoulders. My friends thought I was mad not eating sweet treats and although not easy, the benefits far outweigh it.

It is amazing that even on the back of a simple supermarket salad you will often see an abundance of additives including lactic acids, stabilisers and Xanthan gum.

6- Boost your serotonin!

Winter Seasonal Affective disorder (SAD) affects millions of people worldwide with a huge 25 million in America. Serotonin exerts powerful control over our emotions, wellbeing, memory, focus and cravings and when lacking this can cause problems with sleeping, pain tolerance, body temperature and the ability to feel enjoyment.

Serotonin boosting foods are kale, spinach, green tea, eggs, nuts and fatty omega rich fish.

7- Take a gadget break.

If its not whatsapp, it’s instagram, emails or facebook. Then there’s telephone calls, YouTube and computer work, its no wonder the brain gets frazzled! This can all lead to a state of aggravation, confusion and feeling complacent.

An easy way to start is to get technology out of your room when you’re sleeping. Then try to take frequent Internet breaks. Do you really need to see another duck video or a photo of someone’s macaroni cheese?

8- Get spiritual!

Yoga and meditation have been used in ancient Chinese culture for centuries and have been proven to have calming effects. Most recently Harvard students produced a five-year study, which scientifically proved that practicing yoga, meditation and mindfulness increased energy metabolism and insulin secretion.

When testing people that practiced yoga twenty minutes a day and those that did not, they found a medicine link that reduced inflammatory disease and stress.

If you don’t have a yoga class near you, there are many free online tutorials and meditation wise, Deepak Chopra posts brilliant videos.

9- Swot up!

In the dreary months ahead learning can always broaden the horizons. There are some great online courses or my personal favourite is watching Ted talks (perfect in the bath!)

You can find out the most incredible inspiring things! Look at your local classes if you don’t feel like travelling, walking to a class might be easier and you’ll get some air too!

10- New exercise!

We hear it often enough that working out is good for us but did you know that repeating the same exercise cannot always benefit as much as we think? Our bodies can accommodate and adapt to regular exercise very quickly therefore not burning as many calories (whilst sometimes it can get a little boring!)

Arnold Lee, MD, a physician at One Medical Group, San Francisco believes that stimulating different muscle groups releases more endorphins and stops your body and brain from going onto autopilot.

Exercises that require more than just using the body, for example ballroom dancing, stimulates the brain whilst building a healthy heart, body and mind.

Coat by Zara

Maternity Dress by Serpahine

Shoes by Marks and Spencer (but don’t they look oh so Prada;)

Well, it’s not all afternoon teas and cakes! I’m so excited and thrilled to be pregnant, so thought I would write a blog post about my journey so far.

Wow! Motherhood. It seem it is the most terrifying journey I think I have ever been on so far- more scary than when I used to go for auditions in front of ogre directors that would rip you to shreds if they felt like it! More scary than venturing anywhere or trying something new because I am now responsible for another life for the rest of my life (cue thinking ‘But I can’t even look after myself!’)

But above all, I am super excited and happy to be venturing into the unknown. I am so happy to try and be the best I can be at something so wonderful and give all the love I can.

It has undeniably been a rollercoaster few months, I’ve had such a rocky pregnancy I was scared to even write, post or say anything at all- I have been in and out of hospital, getting sick, bronchitis and having placenta previa with a whole host of other abnormal things along the way- not that glamorous eh?!

Also you have to deal with the sickness. Literally smokers made my stomach turn. And their bloody everywhere in London! I would cross the road as smokers would make me be sick if I smelt it- hello zig zagging! But then another would pop round the corner. Your sense of smell is so strong that even a whiff of BO on the tube can send you into gag mode.

I have now stopped being sick and am in nesting/planning/organising mode! I am addicted to all things vintage so I’ve turned into a mentalist for Silvercross, 1950’s and well, anything darling! Yes, I am that woman googling vintage prams at 1am in the morning!

I will be excited to do some posts of what to wear when pregnant- it is a hard job if you love vintage and being feminine like me. Of course there are those maternity jeans and leggings (yuk) so I’ve been getting creative with what to wear. At first I tried to make my normal clothes last as long as possible- stretchy dresses or blouses over capri pants (but with the zip down, as I couldn’t do them up 😉 But now I have hunted in fabulous places for maternity wear- including Seraphine, Bombshell HQ, bargain sales and of course Marks and Spencers (the one stop go-to shop).

Am I scared? Absolutely. I am not going to deny I have had crippling anxiety at times, worrying about the smallest things and feeling totally overwhelmed by the bigger stuff. I started having anxiety attacks at how I was going to manage, waking up in the night and worrying and although this is something I suffered from in younger years it came back in full force and felt totally uncontrollable. Luckily I instantly got help in every way I could. A doula to help with day to day organising nearer the time, a few sessions with a Therapist who is very spiritual too and lots of yoga/meditation are all helping more and more.

I also felt better doing the smallest thing- not beating myself up and trying to ‘stop’ the anxiety that kept coming my way. When your pregnant you are totally hormonal anyway- I saw a picture of a dog one day and literally started crying as I thought it looked quite sad! But, if there’s nothing I can do about it, why bother getting upset?

I realised it’s o.k to be scared and vulnerable, it’s o.k not to know how it’s supposed to go, it’s o.k for life to suddenly turn on it’s heel- including motherhood. I am no expert and sometimes things aren’t perfect and that’s o.k. Sometimes life just happens and instead of worrying, try to turn these thoughts into a positive and move into a more better way of life. And that’s what I’ve been doing- slowly but surely!

Although I feel I am still learning and walking in unknown territory, I am on the whole loving being pregnant. It is such an exciting time and it has made me change my view on the whole world and how it works. I feel much more humble and joyful at this new existence I will be living. I now feel I can truly be myself, work towards positive new goals and for that I am grateful.

But apart from all this serious stuff, having a baby is super fun!

All the questions you have- ‘what will they look like?’ ‘where will we go together?’ ‘what will they become when they grow up?’ are all so exciting to think about, but currently I am trying to enjoy the moment and go with the flow.

I haven’t been able to have my normal pace of life which involves weekly dinners, attending events, writing, dance, shoots, a little champagne and generally rushing around being a busy bee! Even when I write that I realise how frivolous that sounds! But when your living in London, it’s the norm to cram in as much work and fun stuff as possible. I’ve still been doing some of them but everything has slowed down and well, I feel good, content, happy- well, I feel just really right.

I am sure I am not the only one to worry about how to do it all and for that we just have to blindly feel along the way- especially those like me who never planned it (and I don’t mind admitting that) but when it’s been thrown their way are seeing what a blessing it is.

How wonderful that we think we are going down one path, and then we are told we are going a different way! I think for me that was poignant in the last year- going to America after fighting so hard at getting a permanent visa and swiftly realising it was not for me, with a lot of crazy stuff happening along the way (but that’s another post for another time 😉

Ladies, your not supposed to know it all, just enjoy the delightful experience of a little person growing inside you. The most magical, exciting and awe-inspiring thing in the world. And as they say, ‘You’ve got this!’