Sunday, 29 November 2015


With my big birthday looming, the question was what to do to celebrate?
A party with all my best girlfriends was what I really wanted....followed by special time with my family, and so the plans came together!

With the table set for 25 fabulous girlfriends....

Beautiful and delicious food prepared by a wonderful daughter....

A stunning cake made by a talented friend....

Fun, chat and much laughter around the table...

Plenty of bubbles.....

 Some VIP guests..!

It really was the perfect recipe for the start to a perfect big birthday celebration!  


Part two is over the next few days, when Mr. W and I head off for the exotic charms of Marrakech with our lovely family joining us for the last few days.  I look forward to sharing with you on my return, the beautiful sights and colours of Marrakech, and in the meantime, you can follow along on Instagram @sophiahomelifestyle 


Thank you everyone who took the time to leave such kind and lovely birthday wishes on Instagram this week and thank you for reading!

Sophia xx

Monday, 23 November 2015


It is at this time of year that the Christmas Fairs are in full swing, and I always look forward to visiting one or two of them in late November to get in the festive spirit, find a few gifts which one wouldn't usually find on the high street, and to get some new interior inspiration and maybe add one or two new decorations to my collection here at home...

The Wealden Times Midwinter Fair, which is held in the beautiful setting of Bedgebury Pinetum, near to where I live in Kent is an absolute favourite.  Getting bigger and better each year, it now attracts visitors from far and wide.  

This year, I spent a wonderful day there with my daughter Georgie....always a treat to spend time together on one of her rare days off work, when visiting from London.  We make great shopping companions (much to the alarm sometimes of Mr. W!) and she will be brutally honest with me, especially when it comes to clothes shopping, which I don't mind...if our daughters can't advise then who can?!  Usually though we are completely on the same wavelength and as well as our love of clothes shopping, it is also a joy to find that she is just as passionate about beautiful interiors as myself, as well as a love of good food and cooking, which led her to a career as a Private Chef.

The fair also hosts a variety of fantastic food stands, and we enjoyed a delicious lunch from this innovative Italian food van called Chin Chin...perfect with a glass of Prosecco!

So distracted were we browsing all the beautiful stalls, that not many photos were taken, but as you can see, there was quite a recurring theme of silver and white...always a favourite...

...and interesting and unusual vintage pieces.

This lovely tiered tealight holder made its way home with me...

So nice to find something a little different and original....  


Do any of you have a favourite Christmas Fair you like to visit at this time of year?

I would love to hear!

Sophia xx

Thursday, 19 November 2015


I know I am not alone in saying that I have a little bit of a 'thing' for new cookery books.  I have a large cupboard in my kitchen full to the brim with them....surely more than enough inspiring recipes to last several life times and beyond!  Yet as soon as I hear a recommendation from a friend or from a magazine, promising new culinary inspiration, the chances are that a few clicks later with my good friend 'Amazon' and the next lovely book is on its way...who else can relate to that mild flurry of excitement when the postman arrives baring that anticipated parcel?

Cook book addiction aside, I am pleased to say that I have been genuinely inspired recently with two great new publications.  

The first of which is 'Persiana' - Recipes from the Middle East and beyond.  This fabulous book is perfect for any of you, who like me, love the flavours of the Middle East.  Modern, accessible recipes which are uncomplicated and me, their 'Za'atar Cod with Relish' and 'Spice Perfumed Shoulder of Lamb' are  winners, along with flavoursome, interesting vegetarian recipes too.  The 'White Bean Salad Piyaz' and 'Harissa marinated Asparagus' were very popular in our household over the summer months.

Another cook book I have been enjoying is Madeleine Shaw's 'Get the Glow'.  There has been a wealth of new healthy cookbook releases over the last year, and I have enjoyed most of them, but Madeleine's recipes are particularly appealing.  It is a book that I go through and actually want to cook everything in there and are satisfying and delicious as well as good for you....unlike one or two other uber healthy recipes from other books I have tried, which Mr. W found a little challenging,  but am pleased to report that everything from 'Get the glow' has scored well with him!

Next on my cook book radar are these!  I have always enjoyed Rick Stein's TV programmes and 'Venice to Istanbul' was particularly inspiring.

We all know how the huge success of 'The Great British Bake Off' seems to have got the whole country baking, and 'The Great British Bake Off Celebrations' looks naughty but very nice!


High on my Christmas wishlist is 'The Nordic Cook Book' (please note, any family reading...!) which is an impressive and beautiful compendium of the delicious nordic cooking of my Swedish mother's heritage that I love and am keen to explore more of, as well as the history and culture of ingredients, along with beautiful photography.

Having enjoyed all of Ottolenghi's books to date, I am eager to delve in to 'Plenty More' which has come highly recommended by chef daughter Georgie.

Link: Plenty More

Lastly, we all love the amazing Mary Berry don't we?  Aged 80 with numerous successful books to her name and of course, the success of 'The Great British Bake Off' she is still working hard, and is a true inspiration!  If anyone is going to convey confidence in her tried and trusted recipes, then it's certainly Mary, and her book 'Mary Berry Absolute Favourites' looks like the perfect edition to jazz up both family mealtimes and help with successful entertaining.

If you have been inspired by any of the above,  just click on the links, and if you have any other recommendations then I would love to hear from you....although I may just have to rethink my cookery book storage situation first!

Happy cooking!

Sophia xx

Sunday, 15 November 2015

Thursday, 12 November 2015


None of us can underestimate the benefits of a good night's sleep. I know I for one, so need to have my eight hours of good uninterrupted sleep to feel my best to take on all that my usually busy next day holds.  Not always easy to achieve, but a relaxing bedtime ritual and home comforts can certainly help the body and mind to unwind.  

 And when it comes to home comforts, 'The White Company' is an absolute I am sure it is with many of you!  With their beautiful, calm signature style, their products are an affordable luxury which elevate the everyday.  
With gorgeous homewares, clothing, bedding, candles, beautiful decorations and a range of pampering products, it is
the perfect place to find beautiful gifts for others and treats for yourself...and not forgetting 'The Little White Company' for adorable clothing and accessories for the special little people in your life. 

So, back to that perfect bedtime ritual....and one or two things that I hope Father Christmas is taking note over!

Firstly, their deliciously scented 'White Lavender' bath gel and body lotion gets my vote for a deliciously luxurious and relaxing bath...

Their softest fluffiest 'Egyptian cotton towels' are the best...

Who wouldn't want to cosy up in these softest of cashmere socks...

These beautifully luxurious silk pyjamas....

...and cashmere robe are so on my wishlist!

A cashmere hot water bottle for cold nights ahead...

Beautifully smooth high thread count sheets make all the difference and well worth the investment for a good night's sleep...and a luxurious faux fur throw completes the look of a sumptuous and inviting bed.

And of course candlelight....the relaxing flicker of a flame, with the added enjoyment of soothing scents. A tempting choice of beautiful candles but for this season, I have my eye on the rather yummy sounding 'Mulled Wine'....

Sleep well!


For the next four days until midnight this Sunday 15th November, 'The White Company' are offering a fabulous 20% discount 
off their entire site, with free delivery over £50.

To take advantage of this offer, just click on the link below and enter code AH627 at the online checkout to receive your 20% discount!

Sophia xx