Storage feature

Nursery Storage Solutions

Following on from my recent post regarding storage solutions for toys, I came across, by chance, a fantastic storage store in Asia called The Storage Shoppe Hong Kong (  This storage mecca is an absolute go-to for all your storage needs.  In my case, the issue is still how to address my daughter’s nursery storage without compromising design or heavily fixing furniture to the walls (which is really a no no in HK), and as much as I would love to continue making her more baskets, this mama only has so much time in her day.

This Indonesian Chinese family-owned business promotes craft and ensures all items are hand made to the highest quality using hard wearing materials such as; wood, rattan. & durable fabric.  The candy-coloured pieces are so appealing  to every nursery that you just won’t be able to resist getting more than you probably need (you can never be too organised).  I am an absolute stickler for having a place for everything (think Mary Poppins).  Since having Sophia this rule has definitely started to slip due to time not always being on my side, but the Storage Shoppe Hong Kong has taken the thinking away and offered storage solutions that will hopefully grow with my daughter.


I absolutely love the fun lettering range they have, and I think it looks incredibly eye-catching on my daughter’s door.   A simple bit of blu-tak is all I needed to mount these super cute letters, but you could also prop them up against a shelf or frame individual letters to create unique artwork for your room.

rattan luggage (Official Picture)

Rattan luggage range
forms the perfect feature in your child’s nursery or playroom.  I love how I can create a feature of my daughter’s books and toys without it looking cluttered or messy.  I have to say that Sophia is at an age where these little features still currently stay in tact, but I know this small luggage piece will be used for all sorts of imaginary play when she gets older (no doubt with the entire contents on the floor at some point), so I am writing this with rose tinted glasses on.


When I first got the rattan magazine butlers, I thought these would be ideal for my workspace, but the colours looked so great alongside the luggage piece that I just had to allow for Sophia’s books to be popped away in those.

Tie side is a petite range of fold-away toy boxes.  This will be a valuable piece when travelling back home at Christmas.  I am always looking for ways to stay organised when we go to stay with family.  The fabric boxes have a solid base that can be folded neatly away when not being used.  Ideal for that ever-growing pile of toys collected from doting family or, how I intend to use it, a fantastic portable nappy station.

In addition to the beautiful children’s range, they also have an elegant, yet small, adult homeware range that would work perfectly with any modern interior.  The laundry buck baskets are simple yet hold an Indonesian charm, which would look incredibly stylish against your soft linens.

You can get your hands on these products online, or they are now being stocked in Tiny Footprints  & many more stores in Hong Kong, so go check out these incredibly affordable and fun products for yourself to see how fantastic they are.  I now have my eye on the rattan kangaroo, but they sell out fast (be warned).

Happy organising mamas.


These 5 Changing Bags Will Change Your Life


I hunted down practical and stylish changing bags that are functional and fashionable, mama!

We all know that a changing bag is much more than a bag for every sassy mama out there, and while you are counting down the precious days until your little cherub arrives, what better way to while away your time than on Pinterest stalking celebrity mama bags or googling the most practical changing bag on the market?

After joining the bubs club in October ’14, I know how vital this piece of kit is to a new mum.  We need space, space and more space to fit that never ending list of diapers, milk, muslins, bibs, change of clothes, dummies, toys (you get the point!).  If someone could give Mary Poppins’ bag a bit of a modern revamp I am sure that would be the winner (imagine a bag you could store everything and the kitchen sink in, including in Mary’s case, a floor lamp…), but until then we have rounded up some of the most fabulous designs (both stylish and practical) to assist your quest to source the perfect changing bag and keep you looking yummy.


1. Motherknot Range by Coco Bow

This bag range is designed by British Designer and mum of two, Katie Kaminski, founder of Coco Bow.  This mama is ticking all the right boxes when it comes to crossing practicality with aesthetics.  This unique and classic range is made of real leather, which is a rarity in the world of changing bags.  What I love about this range is the story behind it (every mum loves a good story).  The ‘Motherknot’ logo is the Celtic symbol of motherhood, which features two hearts intertwined with no beginning and no end, representing the unbreakable bond between mother and child.  This chic leather bag comes in two colours (tan and grey) with ample storage and a removable lining with its own strap, perfect for daddy to take away without depriving mama of her handbag (this feature is genius).  The Motherknot also comes with detachable pram straps and shoulder strap, making it an incredibly versatile design.  In my opinion, this is the Kobe beef of the changing bag world.  If this wasn’t enough, Coco Bow have given Sassy Mama readers a discount code to enjoy free international shipping – fabulous (code can be found at the bottom of the page).

Find it: Available for £249 from Coco Bow by Motherknot (online)


2. Le Pliage by Longchamp

Le Pliage by Longchamp is an alternative changing bag which had to be included in our top 5.  Even though it is not designed as a changing bag, a lot of our mamas confessed to this being their go-to changing bag.  This origami-inspired bag is a great run-around bag, and if you are a ‘grab and go’ kinda girl then this is a must-have changing bag for you.  This bag comes in more than 12 colours, there is one small card pocket to the interior and the rest is a ‘black hole’ for you to fill to your heart’s content.  This is a great travel option, and you don’t have to be precious with it; the nylon makes it incredibly hard wearing, which is great for when your cheeky little monkeys start eating and rubbing their lovely snacks over everything (don’t we just love them for that!).  One downside is that, since it is not specifically a changing bag, Le Pliage has no pram straps.

Find it: Available for $1,000 from any Longchamp store


3. Duo Signature Bag by Skip Hop

This over-the-shoulder tote is incredibly ergonomic and very reasonably priced.  From the chevron design to the many pockets, this Skiphop design is a crowd pleaser.  It is probably the one bag that looks most obviously like a changing bag in our top 5, but one advantage of this is that your husband won’t mind carrying it around when he is on daddy day care duties!  This bag also comes with a removable changing mat and pram straps – magnifique!

Find it: Available for $599 from Tiny Footprints


4. Reid Backpack By Herschel Supply

On trend brand Herschel have a fantastic range of backpacks to suit every look.  Inspired by vintage mountaineering equipment, the Herschel bag is definitely a must if you want that extra support without compromising on style.  My favourite is the Reid range, which comes in a variety of finishes and features a very minimalistic design.  However, like the Longchamp Le Pliage, this bag is not designed specifically with diaper duties in mind, although it certainly makes a great (and ergonomic) option, and its versatility means it will have a longer lifespan than the average changing bag.

Find it: Available for $560 at the Herschel Store in Hysan Place 


5. Lucinda by Storksak

‘A Place for Everything, and Everything in its Place’: Storksak’s moto for creating the perfect bag.  This new design for Storksak is the perfect on-the-go bag, ideal in my opinion for all you sassy mamas who have had to return to work but still need to express, giving you plenty of space for that all-important pump but disguising itself as a stylish handbag.  Its minimalist design helps to camouflage the changing bag interior, making this bag a great option for anything from a play date through to after work cocktails.

Find it: Available for £175 from Storksak (pre order for August delivery)

Happy bag hunting ladies x


Get Creative…

We all know by now a little of what The Pulse in Repulse Bay has to offer, but I recently visited to check out the beautifully stylish new Southside branch of Loveramics.  I was lucky enough to have a ceramic date with Grace Ching, co-founder of Loveramics, to discuss everything ceramic (and not).  As I entered this little nest of goodies, my magpie-like eyes could hardly contain themselves!  I have been a huge fan of this contemporary homeware brand since I first stumbled upon their store in Sheung Wan, and every time I enter one of their stores I get more excited to discover their unique designs.


I decided to take my daughter along for the ride to make it a mother and daughter outing in anticipation of the Easter holidays.  My daughter is only 5 months old, but even at this age it was a fun & creative afternoon (I think Sophia enjoyed it, and I certainly did).  Grace very kindly guided us through our options of what we could paint and all the different methods of painting we could use.  My daughter is at that stage where she loves to grab everything (my poor hair), so finger painting it was.  We had a choice of painting a plate, a mug or a small bowl and we opted for a mug.  While we picked our paint colours, Grace spoke to me about the business.  The ceramic side of the business has been in the family for quite some time, but it wasn’t until the husband and wife duo decided to create a brand for themselves that Loveramics was born.  Grace is a Sassy Mama, too (if you weren’t impressed already), so not only is she running a fantastic business but has three beautiful children and still has the time to look effortlessly chic (I am impressed that I just about manage with one…).


Once we had finished our ‘masterpiece’ of a mug (that any mama would be proud of), it was popped into a kiln for a week, after which it will be ready for collection.  This painting session got me super excited as we all know there really isn’t much in the great 852 that can entertain both parent & child; I found this to be a great marriage of fun and sophistication.  The space can be hired out for birthday parties (which is perfect as you can then let your little tinkers have a good run on the beach afterwards) or – if you are like me with a wee one – why not invite your playgroup along for an afternoon of finger painting and sipping from a selection of locally roasted coffee or organic tea, and gain a cherished ‘heirloom’ at the end of it?  I think it would also be a fantastic venue for a baby shower or hen party (I’m always on the lookout for alternative ideas).


I can’t wait to see how my little munchkin’s mug turns out and, even though this is a gift to me for Easter (as this is my Easter egg alternative this year, well maybe!), I think now would be a great time to get yourself over to Loveramics to make up some beautiful Easter gifts.  Alternatively, Hong Kong (and American) Mother’s Day is just around the corner and I know Grandma would absolutely love an item for the sideboard.  Then after all the hard work of painting, take a gander around the store and be inspired by their latest collections for that ‘summer 15’ look or pick up that must-have salad/pasta bowl before BBQ/junk season kicks in (I’m just saying because I have every intention of doing this when I go to collect my mug…)

What are you waiting for?  Ready, steady, paint…

Price – 400HKD.  This price includes 1 piece of ceramic, all tools & brushes & 1 tea/coffee/soft drink.  I think this is a steal as the whole session lasts for around 2 hours and you actually have something to show for it.

Address – The Pulse, Shop 207, 28 Beach Road, Repulse Bay, Hong Kong

Opening Hours – 11am-7pm (Walk-ins also welcome)

Loveramics –


NAÏF Said…

A new baby care brand is trending and creeping its way onto our changing tables and into our bathrooms.  NAÏF is a Dutch brand that was founded in 2012 by two very cool dads, Jochem and Sjoerd, who, after searching the market high and low for that perfect skincare range for their babies (presumably without success), decided to produce one themselves.  Obviously.  This Dutch duo not only designed an aesthetic crowd pleaser of a product but have ticked all the right boxes for many mamas by leaving out artificial ingredients such as chemical preservatives, PEG and synthetic emulsifiers while allowing nature to speak for itself with ingredients such as cottonseed oil & sweet almond oil.


The name NAÏF, which means naive, honest, innocent, summed up newborn babies in the eyes of Jochem and Sjoerd.  By only using pure ingredients in their products, they aspire to provide only the very best for our beautiful little monkeys, keeping them as pure as possible for as long as possible (at least that’s the intention).

This delicate range is an absolute hit in my eyes.  It was nice to finally come across a brand that had really thought about what actually goes into baby products and tried to make everyday products great using entirely natural ingredients.  The soothing massage oil was definitely my favourite.  I have tried baby massage in the past but Sophia did not really take to it as eagerly as some babies, so when I got the NAÏF massage oil I thought it was the perfect opportunity to give baby massage another go and so far so good!  The oil has a beautiful aroma and as well as being gentle on Sophia’s skin it leaves my hands feeling super soft, which is a nice bonus.

What I love about the NAÏF range is that it will grow with your baby.  It is suitable for all ages (I even use the milky bath oil myself and it leaves my skin feeling cherub-worthy, so you can see it as a double investment).  Hopefully you won’t personally get so much use from the diaper cream as your baby though!


This product gets a huge thumbs up from this Sassy Mama, and I take my hat off to NAÏF for taking the time to create a simple yet suitable product to protect & nourish our babies’ skin from harmful products.  So what are you waiting for?  Beat the trend and instead of taking my word for it go try this luxury baby care range for yourselves and finish each day with the sweet smells of cottonseed & baby goodness!

PERK ALERT: Mention “Sassy Mama” at any NAÏF Care stockist below to enjoy 20% off regular prices, valid until the end of June.

Check out the full range of NAÏF products here:


Tiny Bites: Salute Jamie!

Jamie's HK Mural

My love for Italian food stems from 2011, when I got married in Florence.  The epitome of Italian food to me screams fresh, seasonal & full of flavour, so I was extremely excited to try out Jamie’s Italian and to see whether it has managed to encapsulate Italian flavour within a casual dining environment.

Based in Midtown, this little gem feels like it is hidden away from the numbing buzz that is Causeway Bay.  As soon as you enter, you are hit by a kaleidoscope of design and energy.  All branches of the Jamie’s Italian franchise are designed to be sympathetic to the host city’s personality without losing sight of its Italian feel or Jamie Oliver’s ethos.  From the dramatic graffiti art that guides you up the escalators to the iconic hanging meats framing the pasta and antipasti bars to the vintage Thomas Crapper toilets, aesthetically speaking this restaurant definitely demands your attention from the get go.


On arrival, we were greeted by our friendly waitress, Christy, who explained the menu in detail and walked us through the specials list.  We started by ordering a few starters to share, which didn’t disappoint.  I would highly recommend sharing Jamie’s starters, although if you are territorial over your antipasti that’s also fine; the menu caters to both personalities so don’t panic!  The sharing planks of cured meat and cheese were scrumptious.  My personal favourite from the platter had to be the flavourful mortadella, but the arancini won my award for best starter.  These little golden delights are so moorish and were cooked to perfection and served with arrabbiata sauce (although my husband thought they could have been a little more moist).


Our tiny diner, Freya, was more than eager to sample the food from the children’s menu.  I thought the kids’ menu was fantastic as it provided great food options and doubled up as a colouring sheet to entertain our little rugrats as they got restless waiting for their yummy lunch.  Added to this were the vibrant viewfinders that accompanied the young diner’s menu, displaying pictures of the various dishes with retro charm.  This definitely entertained the adults in our group!


Moving onto the mains, I had to go for the sausage pappardelle, I am such a fan of pappardelle. The name has its origins in the Italian verb “pappare”, meaning to gobble up, and that I did. I would have liked a bit more sauce in the dish, but I was still very happy with the flavours. My husband opted for the fish in a bag (which he was very pleased about as he said every time he watches a Jamie Oliver cookery show he seems to be cooking a fish in a bag). The fish of the day was Halibut, which had been cooked perfectly and was served with an array of shellfish and cracked wheat. And our friends, Alex & Paul, went for the fresh crab spaghetti and “Gennaro’s porchetta” from the specials menu. It was safe to say I had major food envy of the porchetta (named in honour of Jamie’s mentor, Gennaro Contaldo). It not only looked amazing but tasted divine (according to Paul… it was so good that he didn’t share!) There was a slight misnomer with the crab spaghetti in that, sadly, it didn’t seem to contain much crab. Our tiny diner chose the puppy dogs, and they seemed to go down very well. The children’s dishes were all nicely presented and didn’t feel too childish – good job, Jamie!


Desserts are a deal breaker for me (and probably most women), so even though I was beginning to feel like I had over-indulged, I had to politely accept the dessert menu (obviously) and scan through what Jamie’s had to offer.  I can’t lie – when I saw tutti fruitti lemon meringue pie I fully committed myself to having a dessert.  Between us we ordered the tiramisu, the epic brownie and the lemon meringue pie, as well as the vanilla ice cream for Freya.  When all of the sweet treats arrived, I picked up my weapon (aka spoon) and devoured the lemon meringue pie quicker than you can say ‘dolce’.  It was indulgent but also had a refreshingly tangy bite to it.  I also managed a few spoonfuls of my husband’s deliciously moist tiramisu, and safe to say I needed a taxi home.


Thumbs Up:

It was an all-round thumbs up for us, from the food and the ambience to the friendly and efficient service, we felt very welcome and not out of place with our children.  The natural energy given off from the tables around us created the ideal backdrop to take your family for a well-earned lunch/dinner.  An extra thumbs up goes to our attentive waitress, who remembered the name of our little diner, Freya, which was a lovely personal touch.  A thumbs up from our tiny diner (in the below picture).


Thumbs Down:

Midtown is slightly off the beaten track, so to anyone not familiar with Causeway Bay it can seem a little bit of a mission to get to.  At the weekends, you also need to leave plenty of time if arriving by road from Central (although CWB MTR station is only a short walk away).

Stroller Access?

Yes, elevator access to the restaurant for families with strollers (although you will need a member of Jamie’s team to accompany you to the elevator in the main Midtown building, which otherwise doesn’t provide access to Jamie’s), but otherwise there is an escalator straight to the restaurant from street level.


Yes, the Stokke Tripp Trapp (for all you Scandi design lovers) in a variety of colours.

Kid’s Menu?

Si/yes – A fantastic children’s menu that is printed on the back of a colouring sheet.

Price Range:

Incredibly reasonable.  Main meals range from 65HKD for a small plate of pasta – 300HKD for a 10 oz ribeye steak (excluding specials).  Kids’ meals all cost 58HKD (+8HKD for dessert).

Opening Hours: Monday-Sunday 11am – 11pm.  Booking is advised but walk-ins are also encouraged (only 20% of tables are allocated to reservations).

Looking for a great option this Valentine’s Day?  Share your love with Jamie’s Italian.  They will be featuring a delicious set menu foe $388 per person, served with a complimentary glass of Rossini.  All tables will be available for reservations exclusively for the occasion, so get booking.

Jamie’s Italian, 1 Tang Lung Street, Causeway Bay, 3958 2222



Review: Birthing Rehearsal Workshop

photo 1

For mammas-to-be, the build-up to your new arrival’s due date is one of the most exciting times in your life, but it can also feel slightly overwhelming.  You’re faced with changes to your body and mind and, to add to that, a checklist as long as the Hong Kong Harbour.  As your pregnancy progresses and you start to familiarise yourself with alien terms such as colostrum and oxytocin, it is time to consider your antenatal options and research how to have the smoothest labour possible.

A Mother’s Touch kindly invited Sassy Mama along to their Birthing Rehearsal class to experience the journey of a natural labour and to learn how your birthing partner can provide practical support throughout labour.  The class is deliberately light on academic references to avoid those continuous oooohs and ahhhhs over medical terms.

When my husband and I arrived, we were greeted by Liz, the owner and founder of A Mother’s Touch.  I knew immediately that we were going to click with Liz as her warm approach and zesty personality made me feel like we were in the presence of someone who was confident in their ability but also made you feel like you had just walked into a family friend’s home.

As soon as the class was full of blooming bumps and keen daddies-to-be, Liz began to assist us along a birthing journey and highlighted that this was very much a class where the partners could feel useful and understand how they can play an important role in the birthing experience.  We were all handed an extensive handbook, which was presented in a lovely folder and super organised inside – a birthing ‘bible’ that will be cherished!

The first section of the class covered the stages of labour and focused on the typical fears and emotions that may be running through everyone’s minds during the third trimester.  It was really interesting to listen to the birthing partners’ views on this as I feel as an expectant mother that most of the time I am (understandably) so focused on my own thoughts and concerns that I don’t think to consider that my husband might have concerns of his own.

We then moved on to methods of breathing and positioning throughout labour.  This was definitely, for me, the most helpful and fun, because aside from being a yogi I feel you cannot soak up enough information on how to assist the most natural birthing experience possible.  Liz had the entire class get engaged in understanding ways for mums to stay mobile and for the birthing partners to assist with adjustment of the baby’s positioning and targeting those typical aches and pains as labour progresses.

photo 3

We learned the importance of basic reflexology and accupressure, and Liz helpfully pointed out some key areas that our birthing partners can massage throughout labour.  We also learnt how to use a rebozo, which is a fantastic product that A Mother’s Touch will rent out to expectant mothers.  Although it may sound fancy and exotic, it is a traditional Mexican scarf that can be used for anything and everything but, most importantly, for positioning support and relaxation during labour.  Liz kindly demonstrated on me some of the ways you can use this simple but effective product and now I have my eye on getting my own before D-day (I’m a magpie after all; shine something pretty in front of me and I will want to have it).

Lastly, after numerous toilet breaks and snack station visits we approached the end of our class – visualisation.  This was such a beautiful exercise as each couple had to embrace their partner, feel the rhythm of each other’s breathing, then close our eyes and start a journey of relaxation.  Liz softly narrated ways to visualise your journey, trying to engage all senses into your imaginary safe haven.  For me, this was snorkelling in crystal waters with my husband and discovering my favourite fish hiding amongst the coral.  Although I might have started out as a sceptic, as Liz slowly started to pull us away from our visualisation I was definitely in a deep state of relaxation and could have fallen asleep at any minute – true bliss.  When everyone was ready to leave we were then presented with a little gift bag (Liz’s rescue pouch to pop into your hospital bag containing oils, helpful tip cards and her personal touch of items that she uses in her role as a doula).  This has certainly going straight into my bag for the big day.


My review really only touches the tip of the iceberg with what we took away from Liz’s class, and we will certainly stay in touch with Liz and A Mother’s Touch as their company passionately wants to ensure that all couples have the best possible birthing experience.  They are constantly improving their practice to explore natural remedies and treatments to assist you with anything from considering a family to treating those precious little babes with a baby massage.

My Birthing Rehearsal experience really was delivered with A Mother’s Touch, which for an expat like me made the class feel that little bit more special.  I came out with a ‘glow’ and feeling even more excited about our little bundle’s arrival.

If you haven’t already come across A Mother’s Touch please visit their website as they offer classes and treatments that are suited from bumps to beyond.



Working With Leather…


I am absolutely loving leather right now after recently completing my first ever leather workshop.  I have been sourcing leather for years, whether for an armchair, a headboard or a contrast piping detail, but I have never physically worked with it.  The material is actually quite beautiful to work with, and the results you can get are really remarkable, not to mention my addiction to the smell of a good hide!


I put my virgin leather hands in the care of Fungus Workshop, a small workshop in the heart of Sheung Wan that captures the essence of a fully-fledged leather studio; full of quirky looking tools and walls hanging with finished examples of leather products & jewel-like off-cuts of leather.

I dragged my fellow designer & DIY friend Vicky along for a four-week leather course.  We both had our minds set on making a chic summer clutch (a must for every sassy lady), and with the tutors’ hand-holding we were able to hone in on the finish of the leather and to master (albeit very basically) the assembly technique.  Our first session was made up of cutting out the leather template, smoothing the edges of our chosen leather with a chemical solution and learning about the tools that we would be using.

photo 1

The workshop has an electric vibe, full of students and tutors who are eager to help enthusiastic newcomers.  When they are not dishing out advice, the tutors fill their time with their own exciting leather projects, from belts to custom eyewear detailing.  The workshop interior has a real prohibition feel, full of vintage finds such as old phones and original Singer sewing machines, which help to create a real ‘edgy’ tone.  After my first lesson, I was anxious for my next class, where I thought I would be able to start sewing.  Understandably (but to my frustration!) before we were able to start stitching we had to mark out and punch the holes for the stitching to ensure that everything would be as symmetrical as possible and that all the holes would be perfectly aligned to the edge of the leather.  After a full session of hole punching, for our third session we were knee deep in special thread and needles, and boy did we underestimate how hard that was going to be!

The stitching was a laborious process, which required the patience of a monk, but once we had completed this painstaking task we were able to stand back and be incredibly proud of what we had achieved.  To finish off my clutch, I wanted a magnetic latch to fasten the bag, so I had to do a small additional amount of stitching to affix the magnet to the bag.

I had a little extra time so my tutor quickly helped me to make a wrist cuff to match my handbag (which has been a huge hit with my friends!)


Overall, I would highly recommend this course; it opens your eyes to working with a new material and is a great way to meet new people.  The tutors take a stand-off approach to teaching, which may not be to everyone’s liking, but they are friendly, always there if you have any questions, and they know leather inside out – I liked to call them the Leather Gods!  Time to get creative Sassy ladies… who knows, you might end up making your own Christmas presents this year – now that’s impressive!

One of the tutors, Philip, was kind enough to do a small Q&A, which will hopefully answer any of your questions:

Lovingly Made:  What made you come together to create Fungus Workshop?

Fungus Workshop:  Originally we were looking for our own workshop space.  Later lots of our friends were also interested to learn how to make their own leather items, so we started Fungus Workshop.

LM:  What skills can a student expect to gain from your workshop?

FW:  Actually we will share everything we know about craftsmanship on leather, but normally people can learn all the basic skills on handmade leather works.

LM:  What is the most interesting piece you have been commissioned to do?

FW:  There are quite a lot of items we’ve made during these four and a half years, and some of them are really interesting.  Maybe we would highlight the “Ukulele Case” and some art pieces for several exhibitions as particular highlights.

LM:  Do you host events?  Would something like this be suitable for a hen/bachelorette party?

FW:  We have held birthday parties for children and bridal showers in our workshop, so yes to hosting events.

LM:  How much does it cost per workshop session if someone wanted to do a taster course?

FW:  We provide a 4 session course for HK$1680, where people can make 2 simple items or a wallet; and a 2 session course for HK$840, for someone who wants to make a more simple gift.

LM:  Where do you shop for your one-off accessory must-haves?

FW:  We will try to make our own.

LM:  Who influenced the design of the interior?

FW:  We love vintage goods and also appreciate the handcrafted things in life, like old wooden chairs and wooden cabinets… Most of them are our own collections.

Fungus Workshop, G/F, 4 Po Hing Fong, Sheung Wan, Hong Kong, 2779 9003,, Email for more info!


Spruce up your living space…


Sassy Must HavesIt’s always nice when the suffocating summer heat arrives to add a bit of life back into our homes to reflect the happy hues from the great outdoors.  Sadly, the HK weather is refusing to behave, so close your eyes and pretend it’s a dreamy summer outside.

Come rain or shine, treat yourself to a few home character comforts to brighten up some areas of your apartment that might be missing that ‘loving touch’.

Dining Table

Let’s start with the dining area.  Although this may not be used by all on a regular basis, I’m sure that compact dining table has hosted a few Secret Ingredient dinner dates in its day?!  If you’re a play it safe kind of gal then I suggest just adding a few accessories to your dining experience that will make your meal feel that little bit more special and give you the courage to invite your girlfriends over for drinks and nibbles.  I found some fantastic glassware at Muji, and being in love with the colour blue I knew these tumblers would add the brightness I needed to my dinner table.  I then accentuated that by applying some napkin rings from Indigo Living to complement the glassware and paired with simple white linen napkins.  So simple yet incredibly effective (see image 1 in the picture above).  Blue is very ‘in’ this summer, but if this makes you feel more blue than happy apply the same theory to your colour of choice.

Typography – micro trend

I’m loving that typography is on trend – it is such a chic and light way to add character to a bookshelf, cabinet unit or pigeon hole.  I bought some from Mushroom on Aberdeen Street, but you can also get hold of them on Etsy or in most restoration/vintage shops (see image 2 in the picture above).

Balcony Furniture

I know that most of us are more balconette and less balcony, but you can almost certainly still fit a table and chairs onto it – tried and tested.  Our trusty friend Ikea do a range for the balcony-challenged called the Askholmen (see image 3 in the picture above), which so reasonably priced you might want to buy two sets (but stay focused).  To add a bit of character to this dining set, I would suggest sourcing an outdoor fabric (most fabric stores in HK stock Sunbrella fabrics) and have some cushions made up, bringing a little bit of interior out onto your balcony.  Add small potting plants and you are ready to sip that well deserved gin & tonic.  Balconies are not just for drying clothes and storage space – remember why you opted for a balcony as part of your apartment choice in the first place and start enjoying summer in your very own outdoor oasis!

Floral Arrangements

Peonies are delightful at this time of year, and you can find them at all florists along the wet market or if you want to really treat yourself from Flannel Flowers or Agnès b Fleuriste.  A simple floral arrangement can transform any space and also add a splash of colour to those areas in need of brightening up.  If you’re not a fan of peonies (I will let you off) check out Pinterest for some inspiring ideas of what arrangements you can create with flowers that are currently in season.  See image 4 in the picture above.

Room Scent

I am absolutely in love in Dr. Vranjes as the smell automatically takes me back to summers in Florence (see image 5 in the picture above).  These room scents fill so much of your apartment with their delicate fragrance that it’s hard to go without one.  If you want the smell of summer in your apartment I would seriously suggest adding a Dr. Vranjes to your weekend shopping list as not only do they smell divine, but they have the power to transform the feeling of a room and add a small element of decor with their elegant, beautifully designed bottles.  I was able to buy mine from Visionaire on Gough Street, but you can also buy them online.

Accent Colour

Pantone’s Paloma is trending the blogs and magazines, and I couldn’t agree more – this is such a hot colour for the summer.  Not only am I a huge fan of grey but this tone is subtle and yet statement and goes with EVERYTHING!  Add a splash of Paloma to your life by shopping for a new throw or rug and you will forever be in love with grey too.  See image 6 in the picture above.

I hope this has shown you that just a few small additions to your home this summer can help your space to feel full of life and not break the bank… you may even have some money left over to treat yourself to a hard earned cocktail or foot massage!


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From Hatton Garden…

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…To Hatton Studios, in our very own Hong Kong.  A jewellery studio & workshop full of exciting opportunities for all from the budding jewellery designer to a complete novice (me).  I have no previous experience in jewellery making, and I am also not the most steady handed when it comes to working on a small scale, but I wanted to make my husband something special for our wedding anniversary.  Since he is always short of cufflinks, this struck me as the perfect opportunity either to create a stylish statement pair of cufflinks or (more likely) to form two blobs of polished metal and pretend the design was intentional!

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The studio is nestled away in the heart of Sheung Wan.  As soon as you enter the small (yet functional) space, you can see that this studio means business.  Immediately on entering the studio, I felt certain that I would leave the studio after my four-session course feeling confident with metal and owning some jewellery that I (and hopefully my husband) could be proud of.  Upon arrival you are greeted by Nathalie Melville, the founder of Hatton Studios & Melville Fine Jewellery, who invites you into her world with a warm smile and a bubbly personality to match.  Read on to find out some personal facts about Nathalie in our Q&A at the end…


Nathalie, the studio owner, goldmith & designer, is a creative and incredibly approachable tutor.  She took a very hands-on approach to the course and made the entire process extremely simple and exciting.  Nathalie studied at Saint Martins in London and has worked for many international brands, including Tiffany and Shanghai Tang.  She is extremely knowledgable and will even allow you to book private classes to make an extra special piece.

My workshop comprised four 2.5 hour sessions.  The first session was purely intended to get you accustomed working with metal and to familiarise yourself with the tools you would be using throughout the course, but that did not stop me from making a small pendant to take home that day.  This was not only an additional bonus (two pieces of jewellery for the price of one – yes please!) but a very simple way of easing you into the workshop.


Throughout the sessions, I worked with Nathalie on my cufflink design, from marking out the shape to cutting the metal and even adding personal touches such as initialling the back of the cufflinks.  I was dying to try my hand at annealing & hammering metal, which I thought would create the perfect finish to the face of my cufflinks.  Not only did the hammering process create a stylish pair of cufflinks – it was also surprisingly therapeutic!

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When all the filing and soldering is complete and you have added any finishing touches, you have to say goodbye to your cherished pieces (not for long) while they go into the barrel polisher to develop that final bling!

I have nothing but great things to say about this workshop.  Not only did the experience leave me wanting to make more jewellery (which I am already discussing with Nathalie), but my husband was delighted with his bespoke present (he even thought I had bought them – maybe he was just trying to flatter me?!)

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I was lucky enough to catch up with Nathalie for a cup of herbal tea and asked her a few questions – enjoy!

Lovingly Made: What is the most unusual piece of jewellery you have been commissioned to do?

Hatton Studios: Wearing my Hatton Studios course director hat, I have been asked to work with students on everything from a diamond and tourmaline cocktail ring, (30 hours of private classes later she had completed the most stunning ring), through to a top hat wearing, skull tie pin!  As the Creative Director of Melville Fine Jewellery, I have created pieces ranging from a Tim Burton inspired engagement ring to a pair of 100+ carat citrine and sapphire earrings for a charity auction.

LM: What advice would you give to anyone aspiring to get into jewellery?

HS: First, know you are passionate about it.  The jewellery industry is vast and covers so many disciplines, so it is a steep (and often challenging) learning curve.  My advice would vary, depending on which area was of interest.  However, and I say this from the bias of being a goldsmith, start practical!  I have had students who have come to me after years in the gem trade, or in the PR side, wanting to understand what goes on behind the scenes.  Other students have thought design was their niche and then sat at the bench and fallen in love with the craftsmanship side of it.  If you understand what goes into making a piece you can better understand how to design, market or sell it.  From there you can choose the course, apprenticeship or on-the-job training programme that suits your needs.  Equally, I am always happy for people to ask my advice on that!

LM: What’s your favourite boutique in HK?

HS: I love Pretty Dangerous and Ame Gallery – they really champion some great local and international jewellery designers.  For clothes, it has to be Polkadot Boutique.  They have such a great selection and really understand the female form.

LM: What do you like to do in your spare time to unwind in this forever-changing concrete jungle?

HS: Spare time…  What is this urban myth?!  In all seriousness, I live, love and breathe what I do – so between Hatton Studios and Melville Fine Jewellery it doesn’t feel like work.  We do have two lovely rescue dogs, who are often in the studio with me, and walking them is great to clear my head or catch up with my husband.  (He is an entrepreneur so works even longer hours than I do!)  We also work together a lot as we run multiple social ventures under our charitable organization, The Fargo Foundation – from Street Poppy (a monthly art programme for vulnerable youth groups) to the Hong Kong Treasure Hunt (an annual charity adventure race around HK).  I am also in the process of setting up an ethical jewellery platform that will address education, advocacy and action within the industry.  Aside from that, and catching up with our amazing friends who put up with our antisocial hours, I sleep!

LM: Finally, what exciting plans do you have in store for the rest of 2014?

HS: So many!!!  Hatton Studios is expanding its course availability to include medium to long-term courses that are more tailored to preparing students to enter the market.  Having trained at Saint Martins, I had the luxury of working on some amazing, industry led projects – from Cartier to Links of London.  I feel there is disconnect in Hong Kong between the industry and the education sector and want to address that with our in-depth courses.  We are also hoping to expand to a larger site – but whether that is a 2014 or 2015 move, we’ll have to keep you posted…


I would like to say a huge thank you to Nathalie for allowing me to capture some beautiful photographs of my cufflinks and her studio and also for taking the time to respond to my questions.

The workshop costs HK$2,750, which includes the materials, so sign up now; you won’t be disappointed!  This could be the new spin on what’s hot for your next hen party or baby shower?

Enjoy your weekend and maybe start it off with a cheeky sign up to Hatton Studios… (just saying).

All photographs are property of Lovingly Made.

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Interior Design…

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I have just started writing for Sassy HK, a fabulous website for everything you need to know about HK.  This is one of hopefully many pieces that I can contribute to the fabulous Sassy HK.

We all know that once you have accomplished the ultimate challenge of finding that chic city apartment (we lament over this in The Great Apartment Hunt), you are then faced by the equally daunting task of decorating it.  “Where to start?!”, “I don’t have enough space!”, “I have so many things!” –  these are but a few comments and questions that skate past our minds as we eat away at those precious square feet…

Well don’t fear! Whether you see yourself as the next Kelly Wearstler or you’re just looking for some Sassy storage tips, I’ve put together five easy tips to help disguise clutter and add light back into that old or new dark space.

1. De-clutter

Have more stuff than space?  Of course you do!  We all do in HK.  I’m such a collector of all things pretty and unusual; I like to call them my “cultural heirlooms”.  But in HK we barely have space for bedside tables, never mind a giant Buddha’s head, so go through all of your belongings and decide what is a must and what can safely be packed away until you move into your “forever” home.  De-cluttering is so important, and I suggest to everyone who is moving to take the opportunity to seriously go through everything and let the word “organise” become your yoga chant.

_2yQFsvY5ozrD10P7ApbfQXb19C0bB40ZseclUYIP-02. Storage is your best friend

We all know that kitchen space can be limited, and a recurring issue is where to store all those necessary champagne coupes you’ve been collecting…  Adding a simple, light & reflective sideboard unit to your living space will not only add additional shelving space to display objects and photo frames, but will give you some much-needed additional storage space. It will also allow you to store your dinnerware, creating more space in the kitchen for must-have items like coffee machines and herb pots. Buy clear jars, clean baskets and basic plastic containers.  The roller containers from Japan Home Store (which are fab for under sofas and beds) can be filled to the brim with vacuum-packed winter clothes and bedding, you name it.  Jars, bell jars and cloches can be used in bathrooms and kitchens for those items that look less attractive in their boxes and that risk making you look more like a hoarder than a city socialite. Go to Ikea and Franc Franc for super cheap jars and display those once ugly-looking products, creating transparency and organisation.

LTbgq6bHDwjYbe9PqJX088ByO3TcxCB1BwmhkDm9Ps83. Accent Colours

I personally think choosing just a few accent colours can transform a space. Keep the majority of the palette light and add some contrasting scatter cushions to that tired-looking armchair or brand new sofa from Indigo Living. This concept can then be translated throughout your apartment, allowing you to get creative with your artwork and photography collection.


4. Light

Light is vital to every interior, regardless of how big or small the space. Ensure you are not blocking out the light with bulky objects or dark heavy drapes, and instead open the windows up with a soft over-drape colour. If you’re feeling adventurous add a super light sheer to the underside of the window. That way you can cleverly hide those sometimes-disruptive views into next-door’s apartment, but constantly keep the light coming in.

Add wall mirrors. Mirrors are amazing at giving an illusion of space and can add a bit of flair and character to a blank wall. Choose a design that will complement your style and hang over console units or dressers to instantly create an interior feature. Check out Arteriors for designer trends or L’s Where for a unique one-off piece. In addition to this, add floor lights and table lamps where your apartment is lacking with spotlights or pendants. This will not only wake up areas of your apartment that are shadowed but will give you the chance to add character to your apartment. Go ahead and splurge on a classic General Store gem or one of Eclectic Cool’s Gubi floor lamps. You will always find a space for these!

 5. Have fun

Playing with your interiors should be fun, so implementing these few tips should set you on your way to transforming your small space into an apartment that you can be proud of!


If you like the look of any of the products shown above, you can find them at the following stores:

Sideboard – Ikea ‘Stockholm’ sideboard.
Scatter Cushions – Heavy duty linens & silks by Kelly Wearstler.
Round Mirror – Arteriors (Sankon are the local representatives for this company).

Finding my Sanctuary…


After having my precious darling Sophia just over four months ago, I felt it was time to tackle those postnatal aches and pains result from the constant strain of carrying my baby, picking up toys, nappies, you name it.  I really try to remember to bend my knees and not my back (squat, squat, squat), but I do forget, and I know my Pilates instructor would wince at the thought of me not positioning myself correctly (I’m a new mum so surely I can be forgiven…?!)

With this in mind, I visited The Sanctuary on Arbuthnot Road to see if they could pull me apart and gently put me back together again.  I had initially planned to go to a sleek and shiny hotel spa, to allow the subtle aromas and designer decor take me on a journey where I would forget about the bustling city outside and the strains of being a new mum and allow myself to be totally immersed by the gentle massage & soft music.  However, when I came across The Sanctuary I started to think twice about what I actually wanted from my postnatal massage.  The Sanctuary has therapists who specialise in abdominal therapy, better understand the female body after childbirth, and are sympathetic to each individual case rather than providing a generic massage (which I would never turn my nose up at as I still love a good spa massage – I’m only human…)

My first piece of advice would be not to judge a book by its cover.  When I arrived at the Universal Trade Centre, there was a notable absence of any tell-tale indication that you’ve arrived at a Sanctuary.  However, once the lift doors opened at the 29th floor I soon felt reassured when I was greeted by the super friendly Jenny, my therapist, and was guided through her urban oasis to my hushed treatment room.

To begin with I had an initial consultation to discuss any issues I had or if there were any complications with labour.  I explained that the main target areas were my lower back and my stomach (standard right?!).  I’m quite petite and, to everyone’s surprise, had an extremely large baby, so you can probably imagine that I have a few war wounds to show for it (which I am currently wearing as a badge of honour).  After our little chat, I was left to get comfy on the bed and embark on my holistic journey; I immediately felt a nap coming on – hurray!

Young women having stomach massage

Jenny was incredibly gentle, and by the end of my massage I had ventured over to the good old land of nod.  There was one part of the treatment that felt slightly alien, which was when Jenny used the Arvigo Maya Massage technique on my stomach.  I hadn’t been paying my stomach much attention due to having abdominal separation, so it was nice to know Jenny was targeting this area and treating my uterus to a warming ‘hug’ to help stimulate the area.

Once I had come round from my hour of bliss, we discussed the massage and Jenny passed on some fantastic tit bits on how I can treat my stomach at home and help stimulate this area that has been through the wars during the past 9+ months.

Jenny is a certified Arvigo Maya Abdominal Therapy Practitioner, Pregnancy Massage Therapist and Holistic Aromatherapist specialising in Natural Fertility & Pregnancy Support.  If you have any concerns regarding the reproductive system or simply want to treat yourself to a well-deserved pre- or postnatal massage, I could not recommend Jenny more.  Her calm personality immediately puts you at ease, and if anything was more important to me during those ‘testing’ times, it was to have someone around me who sympathised with what I was going through and genuinely wanted to help.

After leaving this holistic hub, I felt very much in touch with my spiritual side and revitalised.  After I confessed that I am sometimes saddened by the appearance of my stomach after giving birth, Jenny constantly reassured me that my body is amazing and incredibly strong to have gone through pregnancy, and this provided a much-needed boost of comfort and self-confidence.  I’m not quite ready to dust off those long lost bikinis, but I feel proud to know what I went through and am truly blessed and proud to have such a beautiful, happy and healthy daughter.

So ladies, go and treat yourself to a well deserved massage before your beautiful little bundle arrives, or hand the parenting duties (along with that jam-packed nappy bag) over to the hubby and go visit Jenny for a holistic hour of bliss and some much needed R&R.  If you do fall asleep, don’t be ashamed; that’s one hour of guaranteed sleep, so take it without hesitation (and I’m sure Jenny won’t mind the dribble on the pillow that you leave behind, she won’t tell!).

Photos courtesy of The Sanctuary

The Sanctuary –

Address – 29/F, Unit 2905, Universal Trade Centre, 3-5A Arbuthnot Road, Central, Hong Kong

Opening Hours – Monday – Friday: 09:30 – 19:00, Saturday: 10:00 – 17:00, Sunday by special arrangement 

photos courtesy of The Sanctuary

Organise Those Toys…


Now that I have entered the land of motherhood and have already nested my way into next door’s apartment, I wanted to tackle toys!  Every parent-to-be and new parent knows that all those glossy toys and plush looking rabbits catch our eyes and tug at our heart strings as we imagine our little bundles cuddling up to these overly-pricey inanimate objects (but they are super cute so how could we not!)  My only issue is how to restore ‘order’ in your apartment once you’ve bought all those toys that have somehow now taken up an entire corner of a room (and I know this is a problem that will only get worse with time…)

I went in search for some nice toy baskets or boxes but just couldn’t find what I was looking for, either because the designs were too bland or over the top, or if I did find some I liked, they wouldn’t have a nice price tag to match, and I just couldn’t justify paying over the odds for the said item to simply manage mess (it would have to tidy up the toys too).  Frustrated, I ultimately decided to try and make my own toy storage solutions.  I can’t take credit for the instructions on this one as I just had no idea where to start, but STITCHED By Crystal did.  She did a fabulous guest post for Make It and Love It which most definitely helped me and provided an easy-to-follow tutorial that I think you will all love.  I was thrilled with the easy step by step tutorial and was ecstatic with the overall result (pictures in the post are my product).  I don’t often re-blog things that I make from other tutorials but I felt the need to share the stitching love on this one occasion.

Check out the link to get your step-by-step tutorial on how to make those amazing storage baskets:

Places I visited to get hold of my kit were as follows:

Sham Shui Po – Rope, Grommets, Grommet Punchers

Etsy – Chevron Fabric (as I liked the original design), but if you want other options or don’t want to pay packaging, check out Sham Shui Po or the Western Market upstairs as they stock some lovely Liberty Print fabrics.  (Handy hint – select a thick fabric that is durable as this will last longer and hold its shape).

Amazon – Interfacing, but you can also pop into any curtain/upholstery shop for this.

Now let’s create a little piece of eye candy to be proud of!