Hunker Down and Snuggle Up

My natural instinct to hunker down and snuggle up at this time of year has been kicking in with a vengeance recently. This weekend the clocks go back and it starts to get dark even earlier and all I want to do on those cold dark evenings is to stay home and stay warm.

With that in mind I’ve been nesting. (I’m a Cancerian, apparently it’s a character trait we share, anyone else?). I’ve ordered a new mattress topper for the bed and I’ve put a flannel fitted sheet on the mattress (I often do the change over to winter bedding in stages). In terms of winter bedding we have some great pieces from Cozee Home and Northern Nights. I’ve even got a new bedspread and shams from Alison Cork to complete the look. So now I can be all toasty and snoozy in bed. By the way, we have some great duvet options currently available, like the Northern Nights All Seasons Feather and Down Duvet and the Sealy Select Balance 13.5 tog.

The hunkering down and snuggling up isn’t limited to the bedroom though. The whole house needs changes and additions to be made. For instance, I found myself, the other night getting my Mill Convection Heater back out, just in case, and as I was snuggling up to watch a Christmas Movie the other night – yes, yes, I know, it’s far too early for that but it was The Christmas Candle and I’d never seen it and it had Susan Boyle in it, and I remember interviewing Susan shortly after she filmed it and asking her about it, so when I saw it was on, I thought why not? So I spent the evening basking in a heartwarming festive tale snuggled up under my Cozee Home heated plush washable throw. It’s been one of my best investments and one of the best gifts I’ve ever gotten my mum. We quite often phone each other in the winter and say, ‘I’m under my heated throws, are you?’ The answer is always invariably, ‘Yes, of course!’

The only thing I really miss in my flat at this time of year is a real fire, like we had when I was growing up. I love the cosy warm light and the flickering of the flames making the light dance around the room, so I’m half tempted to get the 3D Flame Effect Log Burner we have at the moment. It would really set the scene, especially when the family are around at Christmas.

Lighting is one if my most important things at this time of year too. If you have read past Christmas blogs, I know you will have heard me talk about the effect that lighting has on me and how it can make me feel. I’m very much an ambient lighting kind of guy, again making it cosy and comfortable. Table lamps on sideboards and consoles are my favourite (apart from Christmas tree lighting that is) so I’ve been having a look at some that we have from Julian MacDonald and Kelly Hoppen to really light the place with style.

We happen to have a Todays Special Value coming up this Friday 25th October that is all about lighting, but lighting of a different sort – practical lighting, which believe me is just as important.
It’s a set of three Pop-Up Lanterns from Securebright. They come in two different options: either the Bold (Blue, Red, Platinum) or the Glam (Pink, Gold, Green). They are battery operated and are super bright with 358 lumens per lamp.

They come with a magnetic base, a hook and carry handles so they are really versatile in how and where they can be used. Based on a traditional lantern style, they’re super lightweight, which means that you can take them wherever you need them, be that going out for the fireworks on bonfire night, late night treks along country roads and lanes, in the loft where you may not have lighting wired in, camping, during a power blackout. I’m going to get a set and keep one in the boot of my car for breakdowns (either so that I can be seen by the truck when it comes to help me, or so that it can help me be seen by oncoming traffic if I have to stand by the side of the road), one I will keep stuck to the outside of my fuse box in case a fuse goes and the third one I will keep near my bed in case there is a power cut in the night. So practical!


Each lamp lights up to 122 feet radius because they have modern lighting technology called COB (which stands for Chip On Board) combined with LEDs that also means they will not only perform brilliantly but they will also stand the test of time too.

I was given a set to try and return so I had them in different places around the house to try them out and trust me they are fantastic, that’s why I’m putting my money where my mouth is and buying my own set to have to hand when needed. I can even take them camping or to festivals with me, and if you have nieces and nephews or grandchildren, they’ll be perfect for adventures down the bottom of the garden on those dark winter evenings.

They will be on air all day on Friday 25th October. I will be launching them on Thursday 24th October at 9 p.m. and then again at midnight. So please do tune in for what I can only promise will be an illuminating (see what I did there) discussion on the merits of emergency and practical lighting!

BTW, I just found out that during my 9 p.m. show in Thursday 24th the gorgeous and talented Kate Thornton will be joining me with her inspirational range for Bibi Bijoux. She will be bringing us three different pieces (343456, 343455, 343443) and I can’t wait to hear more about them.

The collaboration maintains the DNA of Bibi but with lovely modern twists added by Kate. As an advocate of female empowerment, strength, sisterhood and friendship, the range is sure to be, not only stylish, but uplifting as well.

See you all on Thursday 24th October at 9 p.m.

Until next time,

Miceal xxx

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