Adopt, Don’t Shop

It’s approaching Christmas time, and we all know how popular pets are to be given as gifts. I don’t often do serious posts but I feel this topic is important to write about.

Animals are amazing, and I’m sure my vegan readers out there will be agreeing with me. Pets bring life into your home. They become one of you with their personalities being known to you and the love you have for one another. They become a member of the family.

I never had pets when I was growing up as I was never allowed them, but when Tom and I moved in together, we took in his childhood dog, Max, from the family home. Max was not adopted by his parents but was a cheap buy back in the day! He was a gorgeous long haired border collie with a speckled ear and one eye patch. We sadly lost him 2 years ago, and my heart was in pieces. I still miss him terribly to this day.

Dog breeding is becoming a serious problem in the world. They’re being so heavily bred that they are starting to have serious genetic health problems, all just so that designer breeds such as pugs and frenchies exist for people to buy.

Every Christmas, numerous dogs are left on the streets and abandoned due to families not being able to take care of them or their expectations not being met. For me, this is no different to abandoning a child. It is not acceptable to bring someone into your home, only to leave them when it doesn’t suit you anymore.

Some shelters will euthanise animals due to the unmanageable numbers they receive which is horrendous and unfair. An animals life is not the decision of others which is why I urge you to re-home an animal instead of buying.


Sami was adopted by Tom’s mum and dad a few years ago after they found her roaming around Greece looking for scraps. She was a stray dog with fleas and matted fur. They took her to the local dog home, Animal Rescue Kefalonia, but couldn’t bare to leave her so started the adoption process. Sami joined us back in the UK only a few short weeks after and has slotted into the family.

Sami has so much love for everyone and has such a gentle demeanour. She’s well behaved with the backyard chickens, and has even been known to pick up their eggs gently without cracking them! She’s cheeky but soft and loving and we all love her unconditionally.


Ned is a feral cat that Tom’s sister, Hannah, adopted from a local rehoming centre. Like all cats, he’s incredibly independent but has had no issues settling into the family home. He’s a cheeky cat who snuck into his first pack of Dreamies and ate the entire bag! He gets along well with their Alsatian, Shadow, and is now an integral part to their family.

Even Lucy Watson, reality TV star from Made In Chelsea, has said previously that she regrets not rehoming her first 2 pets and has since re-homed a kitten.

Before you go out and search for pets, please strongly consider adopting and rehoming one. There are so many different homes and kennels where there are plenty of animals who require forever homes.

Here are just a few well known re-homing centres, but make sure you put in the research as there are plenty of them all over the UK!

The Cruelty Free Beauty Box Deluxe [October 2019]

Another 2 months has passed us by so it’s time for another run through of my latest delivery of the Deluxe Cruelty Free Beauty Box! I was lucky enough to win this box this month in their usual sharing giveaway. I was so chuffed.

If you want to read about the box before this, click here for the post. Previous posts can be found under the Beauty section.

As always, the box did not disappoint and had so many goodies that I cannot wait to try!

This months box contained the following:

  • My HairCare Rescue My Hair Hydrate Shampoo Bar (RRP £14)
  • Natura Pumpkin Sheet Mask (RRP £5.95)
  • Fairypants perfume (RRP £1.50)
  • Palm Bar Body Butter Bar (RRP £5)
  • Bellapierre Liquid Gold 24k (RRP £30)
  • Niu Body Glow Facial Serum (RRP £27.95)
  • Gardner’s Halloween Cookie (RRP £2)
  • Vegan Bunny Chai Latte Soy Candle (RRP £13)
  • Jeavon’s Rizo (RRP £2.75)

The total value of the Deluxe box comes in at £102.15 but will only cost you £39.95.

I’ve eaten the cookie and Rizo bar already and both were a dream. I haven’t had shortbread for a long time and the Gardner’s cookie was a delicious shortbread.

I’ve written about Natura products in various other blog posts I’ve written and I love the sheet masks. They’re a really lovely treat so I’m looking forward to using this pumpkin one.

My final favourite is the Vegan Bunny Chai Latte candle. I’ve actually bought Vegan Bunny candles off Etsy before, but not for myself! I’ve bought Christmas scented candles as stocking fillers for my family members and regretted not buying one for myself. The Chai Latte smell is incredible! I haven’t lit the candle yet but I can’t wait till I do!

I absolutely cannot recommend The Cruelty Free Beauty Box enough. They only send every 2 months which is more than enough for me, and every month is full of new and interesting treats. I adore The Deluxe box with the lifestyle treats. It’s so nice to receive new things that I’d never normally buy for myself or want to try.

Why I Became Vegan

So a more serious blog post this week… I’m going to share with you guys the reasons why I became vegan in the first place.

My vegan story isn’t your normal vegan story, but I’m sure many of you share a similar story.

I’ve been with my boyfriend, Tom, for nearly 6 years now and a year or so into our relationship, he started transitioning towards vegetarianism. This started with going pescatarian first (for those of you that don’t know, that’s eating only fish and no other meat) and the plan was to slowly move from that into veganism.

Before Tom went vegan, he was a big meat eater. He rejected salads, never tried houmous, and was a regular KFC customer. He abandoned his plan of slowly transitioning and went straight into veganism from pescatarianism. I remember when he told me, we were lying in bed and I cried. I told him it was an entire lifestyle change which he didn’t understand at the time but slowly realised.

My reaction was certainly over the top, but veganism wasn’t anywhere near as accessible as it is now. We went out for food a lot and I knew that eating out would become a struggle. Our supermarket shops took longer due to the research required into our ingredients lists, but we adjusted. We remained an omni household where I continued to eat meat. With Tom being the cook of the household, he cooked meat for me for a while until he said he didn’t want to anymore. From that moment, we became a primarily vegan household but I continued to eat meat outside of the home.

Tom had a knack for making people think. He didn’t do it on purpose, but he eventually got his entire family to transition to vegan. Even my sister went vegan before I did. In fact, we used to argue about the discussions we had and I asked him to stop speaking to me about veganism, which he did.

Documentaries started coming out such as What The Health and Cowspiracy. I still haven’t actually seen them, but the world started changing with the demand. More and more people were signing up to veganuary and with this demand, everything was becoming easier. Supermarkets and restaurants were offering more vegan options, veganism was finally becoming accessible!

I was sat on the sofa one day and turned to Tom and simply said, I’m going to go vegan. I wouldn’t say anything just switched, but I’d already made the majority of the way there with being vegan in the household. The only additional change at that point was to only eat vegan outside of the home which was really only at work.

With my clearer understanding of veganism, it just made the most sense. It may have taken me a few years to get there, but it was the best decision I’ve made. It’s not possible to argue with facts.

  • Veganism is better for the environment.
  • Veganism is better for your health.
  • Veganism is accessible.

For those of you who haven’t taken the plunge yet, or are planning to, make sure you educate yourself. I was fortunate to have Tom to help me and educate me, but it is an important life decision. You need to eat the right things to remain healthy and your journey will be eye opening.

Don’t worry about what people have to say either. This is your decision, not theirs! For those of you still with omni other halves, play the long game. They’ll get there through exposure, not pushing.

Thanks for taking the time to read my post and I hope it helps you.

I’m far from an expert on veganism, but if you have any questions or would like to know more about my experience, leave a comment!

Being a Vegan Wedding Guest: Issue 2

I had the absolute pleasure of being invited to Tom’s sister, Kate’s, wedding a few weeks ago which was an absolute dream. Her and David got married in Coed Y Mwstwr Hotel in Bridgend which is tucked away in Coychurch, and conveniently only down the road from us.

I’m close to Tom’s family and love them like my own so I had the luxury of being involved in so many parts of the wedding, but with little responsibility!

In this blog post, I’ll write about all the little vegan bits that were thought about and catered for.

The Night Before The Wedding

We were invited to the hotel for a family meal before the nuptials the next day in the hotel restaurant. There was a vegan menu available and we were given the menus to peruse in the lounge area of the hotel.

We ordered and were taken into the restaurant when they were ready for us. We all ordered Tempura Vegetables to start, most of us ordered the Cauliflower and Pea Curry and Tom’s mum ordered the Chickpea and Lentil Roast for mains. To finish, myself and Hannah ordered the Vegan Chocolate Brownie and everyone else ordered the Grilled Pineapple with vegan ice-cream.

The food was lovely and the service was great. The Vegetable Tempura starter was a big hit with everyone and something that I highly recommend. It was a lovely start to the weekend!

Tom and I then headed home, ready for the next day…

The Wedding Day

Tom and I had a lie in as the ceremony wasn’t until 2:30! We were lucky to have an early check in at the hotel so we were able to check in at 12 so we started getting ready and packing some bags ready for the day!

On the way to the hotel, we stopped off in Who Cult Coffee + Donuts on Bridgend Industrial Estate on request of the bridal party, so it was impossible to say no! It was the first time I had actually gone inside so I took some photos but I’ll write another post. Here’s an older post from when I originally tried their doughnuts.

We arrived at the hotel and ran a few errands with Hannah, Tom’s younger sister and Kate’s maid of honour. We checked in and went straight up so that I could finish getting ready. Once I was ready, I spent the morning with the bridal party, taking photos and tearing up at the sight of Kate in her wedding dress. She looked beautiful.

The ceremony was lovely and there was so much love in the room. It was so clear to see that Kate and David shared so much together and were meant to be. It was an honour to be a guest.

After a drink and photos, we were seated fo the wedding breakfast. The favours were seeds to plant to help encourage bees, so we’ll be making sure we do that!

The wedding breakfast provided by Coed Y Mwstwr catered for both vegans and omnis. Kate herself is a vegetarian so she had the vegan option also.

The vegan option was: Vegetable soup, Black Eyed Bean Bourginon and Vegan Chocolate Brownie with ice cream.

For those who are curious, the omni option was: Leek and Potato Soup, Turkey Roast and Cheesecake.

I didn’t rate the bourginon. The mashed potato was delicious and creamy and the veg was great, but the meat replacement I found to be plain and dry.

The vegetable soup was really delicious. I could have eaten a vat of it! Tom appreciated the croutons too. He said he’d never had croutons before which shocked me!

The chocolate brownie was the same as the previous night but was much nicer with the ice cream.

Remaining on the topic of food… Kate and David’s wedding cake was made by the incredibly talented Vic’s Vegan Bakes. The cake was absolutely stunning and was made of 3 tiers:

  • Red Velvet and Chocolate
  • Salted Caramel and Biscoff
  • Vanilla and Raspberry

Every tier was absolutely delicious. Everyone loved it and I don’t think they even knew it was vegan. Vic bakes amazing cakes and makes them look like an absolute dream! Check out her instagram for all the inspiration.

The evening buffet came out around 9:30pm and has various vegan options and a small section of the omnis too. I picked up a cucumber sandwich, vegetable spring rolls and wontons and potato wedges. Tom had spicy falafel which he loved and couldn’t stop eating.

In between all of this, Tom and I spent the evening dancing the night away, pulling out all of our best wedding dance moves and trying to get everyone we know up on the dance floor with relative levels of success.

The Day After The Wedding

We stayed the night at the hotel. The room was lovely but I didn’t find the bed particularly comfortable. I had very particular comfort needs but it was a nice stay and it was very quiet.

What I did love was that instead of a hanging door sign to indicate you don’t want to be disturbed, they had the cutest cuddly toy dogs! “Let Sleeping Dogs Lay”.

We were invited to join the bride and groom for breakfast at 9am. I never usually eat much in the morning so I only had a coffee and juice but there was lots of lovely fruit on offer as well as cereals. We were also provided with soy milk for teas and coffees. Everyone else ordered vegan breakfasts which from what I remembered had sausages, toast, hash brown and a grilled tomato.

A huge thank you to Kate and David for having us and making the day so special for everyone. Thank you for catering for us and including us in so much of your day!

Vegan Gift Guide

I know it’s early, but I’m going to mention the C word… Christmas!

I’m sure plenty of you (if you’re not vegan yourselves) have vegan relatives and friends that you don’t know what to purchase for.

I pride myself on being a good gift buyer. I pay attention to the people I love and note their needs for future reference. I won’t know your friends and families personally, but here are some shops and generic gifts that many vegans would be pleased to receive!

Holland and Barrett

H&B is a health shop that you can find on most high streets. H&B has so many vegan products available in their stores, including chocolate and snacks, as well as beauty items so it’s always worth popping in.

For Tom’s birthday recently, I popped in to pick up chocolate for him. They have a great range of vegan chocolate there which includes Vego and Nomo. He’s made his way through most of it now and loved it all.

My personal favourite was the Cocoalibre raspberry bar!


Those of you who are avid readers will know that I’m a fan of Lush. I usually stock up on bath bombs and bubble bars which I think make fantastic gifts for people during the holiday season.

Come Christmas time, Lush releases a whole range of Christmas gift boxes as well as individual items. Gift boxes are always a great gift as they usually give you a bit of everything. There are plenty of boxes to choose from so this isn’t specific to Christmas but I do love the Christmas boxes.

Another thing that Lush offers are knot wraps instead of boxes. This gives you the flexibility of choosing which items you’d like your receiver to have, including the design of the wrap.

Everything in Lush is labelled so make sure you pick vegan items. There is a clear distinction between the vegetarian and vegan items so if you’re not sure, ask the staff and I’m sure they’d be more than willing to help.

Ethical Superstore

When we start approaching the Christmas season, I like to take a visit to the Ethical Superstore online store. There’s usually lots of goodies and it’s really easy to filter for vegan items on their website.

My usual Christmas order will consist of chocolate for stocking fillers and there will always be some Booja Booja chocolates, usually for myself…

There are so many items available to browse and buy. Scented candles, clothes, bags, shoes, etc! Depending on who you’re buying for, there’ll be plenty of selection available.


There are lots of vegan clothing brands that I’ve come across in my short time as a vegan with their appearances at various vegan events in Cardiff!

Viva La Vegan

Tom loves the Viva La Vegan range. There are plenty of t-shirts, hoodies and accessories to choose from. Their designs are simple and effective but here are so many designs and options to choose from that there’s bound to be something there.

I love that they also do badges, stickers and reusable items like tote bags and reusable cutlery! If clothing wasn’t what you were after, then these are great options too.

Wear Your Voice

Wear Your Voice have some truly beautiful designs for their clothing. It’s impactful but gorgeous. Their designs range from stunning animal drawings (which are designed by them and won’t be found anywhere else) to some more simple designs.

Eden Perfumes

We’ll finish this post off on Eden Perfumes. I’ve written about Eden Perfumes before in this blog post. They are based in Brighton and are completely vegan and cruelty free. They make so many different fragrances and there will be a cruelty-free and vegan version of your favourite there!

If you know someone who’s recently turned vegan or is transitioning over, Eden Perfumes will be a great alternative for their favourite perfumes. Lots of people forget about the need for cruelty-free and vegan cosmetics so this is also a friendly reminder, as well as a great gift!

If there’s anything you guys would like hints and tips on, please leave a comment below and I’ll do my best to help!

Birkenstock: Vegan Arizona

I’m an avid online shopper and whilst browsing ASOS a few months, I noticed that there was a vegan Birkenstock on their website!

What does this mean you may ask? Shoes aren’t vegan?

Well yes, some are. Leather and other animal products aside, the glues used in making shoes are often not vegan either so it’s something people will need to be mindful of.

Moving on… After finding this vegan Birkenstock on ASOS, I did a bit of digging and found that Birkenstock have an entire vegan, leather free range of their shoes (and in various colours!). Here is the link to the vegan product page on their website for those of you that are interested.

I added it to my ASOS saved list and was biding my time before I bought the sandals. Then one day, I happened to be looking through my saved list and noticed that the sandals had gone down from £60 to £48! I jumped on the opportunity and bought them.

Vegan Arizona Birkenstocks in Stone

My sister already had a pair of Birkenstocks and recommend that I buy them. She also recommended that I up-size so instead of a UK size 5, I purchased a UK size 6.

The shoes were clearly labelled vegan which was nice to see. The classic style was ever present and arrived in a streamlined box. I was excited to put them on!

The buckles allow the shoes to be tightened to fit your feet as comfortably as you’d like them. I originally had them a little looser and found them a little more difficult to walk in as my foot was sliding a lot. I’ve tightened them since!

They are the comfiest sandals that I have ever worn. The base is elevated at certain parts to mimic the contours of the foot. I actually have very flat feet and these contours are still very comfortable and I think improve my foot positioning.

I know they’re expensive, but I think they’re worth it. They’re a very comfortable Summer shoe and the style is so well known and popular that I don’t see them going out of style any time soon.

Have a browse on their website and see what’s there! You might find a style and colour that you love!

Warner Bros. Studio Tour London – The Making of Harry Potter

A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of going to the Warner Bros Studio Tour in Watford, London with my lovely friend Emily as a treat to ourselves!

This was my second visit to the studio tours, having first visited 6 years ago in 2013!

So much has changed in those 6 years, and I won’t detail too much or post too many photos on this blog post because I don’t want to spoil it for anyone who was planning on visiting because it’s worth it. Emily and I were living our best lives and we absolutely loved it.

Vegan Food

To warn you all, the tour is a long one! There’s so much to see. Emily and I spent a good 4 hours there with a short lunch break, which takes me nicely onto this heading… Vegan Food.

I’m not gunna lie, the little restaurant wasn’t filled with vegan delights. I was pleased there was something though! Having a look at the menu, there were a few bits and bobs that were vegan and/or could be made vegan.

I chose to have the veggie hot dog made vegan and a bottle of coca cola. This came to a very pricey £11, but with no snacks and no where else to go, we didn’t have much choice.

It wasn’t great. It was incredibly average and I didn’t enjoy the burger bun change. I’m guessing due to the original bread being a brioche, it wasn’t vegan but the replacement was poor. The one positive is that the cutlery was vegware so was completely compostable!

If you’re planning a visit as a vegan, don’t have any expectations of food. If possible, you’re better off bringing in your own snacks and food to save yourself a pretty penny and to get something that tastes better.

On the plus side however, the gift shop sells some vegan dark chocolate options which included a dark chocolate wand (which I didn’t buy) and dark chocolate peppermint toads which are delicious!

The Tour

As mentioned, this was my second visit to the studios and it was completely different to the first time. Even the entrance has completely changed and the gift shop is so much bigger.

The queuing area was a bit longer but was filled with interesting prints on the wall to intrigue us as visitors and were perfect photo opportunities. There’s a little introduction with a few VTs before you get to the good stuff but it’s all worth the wait!

My favourite part of the tour by far was the Hogwarts Express. I remember they were building it when I visited 6 years ago and I was disappointed it wasn’t ready in time for our visit. Being on Platform 9 and 3/4 was an absolute dream.

One of the more recent and incredible additions was Gringotts Bank. Turning the corner after seeing how goblins were made and seeing Gringotts was such an incredible sight. It was spectacular.

For Harry Potter fans, this tour is a must! Tickets were £45 which might seem quite expensive, but in the grand scheme of everything you get to see, it’s a bargain.

In fact, I’ve been suffering from HP Tour blues since I’ve returned home so I’ve started re-watching the movies to bring me back some of that magic.

Summer Reads 2019

I wouldn’t say I’m an avid reader, but when I’m on holiday I really do chug through the novels. We came back from our 2 week holiday in France last week and I thought I’d give a run down of the books that I have been reading.

China Rich Girlfriend by Kevin Kwan

The second book in the Crazy Rich Asians trilogy, China Rich Girlfriend continues on seamlessly from the first.

I only started reading Crazy Rich Asians shortly after the movie had been released as my sister had recommended the book. Now after reading, I do too. As much as I enjoyed the movie, the book is a lot better and builds a much better picture of the characters and their back stories.

China Rich Girlfriend was just as enjoyable to read as Crazy Rich Asians and brings more characters into the fold. It focuses more on Shanghai and mainland Chinese characters and the story behind Rachel Chu’s family.

You would definitely need to read Crazy Rich Asians first for context, but definitely an excellent read that I thoroughly enjoyed.

Link here.

Rich People Problems by Kevin Kwan

The third and final book of the Crazy Rich Asians trilogy provided us with a wonderful closure to the story. The characters were brought back to life for me with additions to their stories and their lives.

Being Chinese myself, I found this trilogy really funny with the Chinese idioms and relatable with regards to the family culture (less with the rich sadly).

Again, you’d need to have read the first 2 books for context, but I highly recommend them. Kevin Kwan writes a beautiful story that epitomises Chinese culture and their loyalties to family, with the building of wonderful characters.

Link here.

Vox by Christina Dalcher

Vox was recommended to me by my friend, Ella, after telling her that I’d only recently started watching The Handmaid’s Tale (I haven’t read it either – it is on my list, but I have caught up on the TV series!).

The same concept has been built on, whereby America has changed under the rule of religion, and women have been suppressed and limited to 100 words a day.

I enjoyed reading the novel, however I felt the build up didn’t receive the ending it deserved. It was gripping throughout, but I felt the ending was rushed and very ‘happily ever after’.

It might not be for everyone, but at only £2.99, I thought it was worth it and still an enjoyable read.

Link here.

The Cactus by Sarah Haywood

At 99p in the Amazon Kindle July sales, it was hard not to buy this book with the excellent reviews that it had received. Additionally, it was added to Reese Witherspoon’s Book Club.

This was my favourite read this Summer. I related heavily to the main character, Susan, and her incredibly prickly and indifferent personality. Although predictable in many aspects, Sarah Haywood has written her characters beautifully, and the story is emotional.

Susan builds as a person throughout and unfolds with every page you turn. My highest recommendation for this Summer. For those of you with Kindles, grab the book for 99p this month.

Link here.

Last Letter from Istanbul by Lucy Foley

And finally, my current and incomplete read book is Last Letter from Istanbul by Lucy Foley. I’m roughly half way through, and based on what I’ve read so far, I highly recommend it.

I’m finding the historical setting really interesting, and each chapter flips between characters. It’s nice to see each character viewpoint of a scenario and it brings new characters in slowly without naming them and only providing a name like ‘The Prisoner’ and ‘The Traveller’ as their distinction to add to the mystery.

Link here.

Being a Vegan Wedding Guest: Issue 1

I recently had the pleasure of being Maid of Honour at my best friend, Sarah’s, wedding. As the bride is my best friend, she is fully aware of my veganism and did her best to ensure that I was catered for.

As the title states, this is simply Issue 1. 2019 is an incredibly busy year and I have 3 more wedding ceremonies to attend, with an additional wedding reception in between!

The day was spectacular. The venue was gorgeous and has some incredibly stunning views. The ceremony and reception were held at The Barn at West Farm in Southerndown.

The Bride and I

The wedding breakfast was well catered, even if there was only 1 option, but I guess that’s standard in most places. Guests were able to choose from a menu in advance, but our vegan option was vague. It ended up being:

  • Starter: Houmous
  • Main Course: Butternut Squash Risotto
  • Dessert: Vegan Cheesecake

The food was lovely enough and very well presented. The houmous starter was rather boring but the houmous tasted lovely. I really enjoyed the butternut squash risotto; the added balsamic vinegar on top really enhanced it. And finally, the vegan cheesecake was lovely. The groom tried mine to compare with his non-vegan cheesecake and he claimed the flavour was the same and that the only difference was the texture. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

In the evening, we were provided with a vegan pizza option which made Tom really happy. It wasn’t put out on the buffet table to ensure that no one else casually picked up our food, but we were able to ask for it from the kitchen when we were ready for it.

Additionally, they had a sweets table and made sure there were vegan sweet options there too! We could choose from flying saucers, jelly tots and various Swizzels refresher bars which were recently made vegan too.

This was the first wedding I’d attended as a vegan. Tom had attended one of my other friend’s wedding a few years ago as a vegan and he wasn’t particularly impressed. He only had a stack of grilled vegetables for dinner and a fruit platter for dinner.

Tom and I

Sarah and Liam did a wonderful job of catering for us and I’m so pleased that they did. We thoroughly enjoyed ourselves and we wish them all the best in their future together.

Thank you for catering for your only vegan friends!

Spring Cleaning: My New IKEA PAX Wardrobe

We’re into Summer now and over the past few weeks, Tom and I have been making a conscious effort to clear out our junk and start re-organising ourselves and the home! We are still very much in the process of clearing out but we’ve made a good start.

  • I’ve filled 1 large bin liner with clothes that I haven’t worn for a year or so (some even longer!). These have now been donated to charity.
  • Old shoes have also been cleared out, with the unwearable ones thrown away and the others donated to charity. I had, still have, an unnecessary amount of shoes.
  • With those 2 tasks completed, we were able to reorganise our third bedroom/office/dressing room. It’s much tidier with much more room.

This also included an early trip to IKEA on a Saturday morning after a week of designing our ideal wardrobe using the PAX Planner on their website. It wasn’t the easiest design tool but it was great for what I needed, although did heat up the laptop quite considerably!

My wardrobe design using the PAX planner

With the PAX Planner, you can save your designs to go back to later, add them to your basket and/or print out a list to take to your local IKEA store; which is what we did!

We spent a Saturday morning with our IKEA shopping list, struggling around the self serve section of the store with the trolley, collecting our items and cross-referencing them with our list. As it was still early, it wasn’t busy so we were able to get in and out within the hour. I also treated myself to a BRUSALI Shoe Cabinet.

Our IKEA trip was so exhausting just from lugging the items back and forth from shelf to trolley, trolley to van and van to house, that the thought of building it that same day was completely unfeasible. We settled for building the shoe cabinet first and saving the delightful wardrobe adventure for Sunday.

I wish I took before and after photos of the house, but before our shoe cabinet, we had a very basic shoe rack from Dunelm. This, combined with the masses of shoes, made for an incredibly messy looking hallway. The shoe cabinet has made a huge difference. It’s much more organised and having the shoes hidden away declutters a lot.

BRUSALI Shoe Cabinet

The only problem with the shoe cabinet was that the already provided gap for the skirting board was not large enough for our skirting board. This is probably my own fault for not checking but we got too lazy to cut it so we left it as it is, not screwed into the wall. We don’t have young children so we’re not too worried about furniture falling on anyone other than ourselves!

Now onto the wardrobe…

We woke up early on Sunday morning to build the first 100cm frame. I let Tom sleep in while I built the drawers as he would have the harder job of carrying the wardrobe frame upstairs. We opened all the packaging downstairs and he took the frame up piece by piece as it was heavy in it’s packaging.

We had to move the room around in order to give us enough room to build the frame but once we had that in place, it was fairly simple to follow the instructions. Our favourite thing about IKEA are their instructions with the funny looking faces. It can be quite difficult to follow and we made a few mistakes with misplacement of screws but fortunately they were rectifiable.

After completing this frame, we took a well deserved lunch break for an hour before moving onto the smaller 50cm frame. After building the first frame, it was much easier and quicker to do the second as we’d already completed the steps once before.

Both frames completed and put together

And finally, to finish off the wardrobes, we attached GRIMO doors with black ENERYDA knobs. The doors were incredibly simple to attach with the hinges and after we measured the door handles in the right place, the look was complete and we were ecstatic with the finished product.

I’m not sure what everyone’s overall feelings towards IKEA are, but I recommend these wardrobes. Something of a similar size, without the customisable options, from somewhere like was at least double the price.

In my opinion, it was very much worth the effort of collecting, carrying and building for the perfect wardrobe. I’ll complete another post in the future with the wardrobe filled and some more of my organisation improvements!