Monday, 29 January 2018

Shop Unique - Spotlight on Hettie


Hettie is a small business which specialises in making accessories from British wool. It’s based in Warwickshire, remains family-run and uses fabrics woven in the UK. Hettie create timeless, chic accessories, from bags to little bow-ties for dogs. These items are made with love and are perfect for anyone who wants to invest in ethical, British fashion—like us at Madia & Matilda! That’s why they feature on our website as a like-minded fashion brand. It’s a brave move to work mainly with one material, but it also encourages its beauty and versatility to shine. Hettie has perfected this idea to bring us a delightful collection of woolly wonders!

A small range of products enable a manufacturing method which is thoughtful and trustworthy. Allow us to present...

The Hettie bag. Available in a variety of fabrics and colours and made in a beautiful, classic design, this bag will cheerfully see you through your all adventures. It’s a great size for everyday use, not to mention full of easy-to-wear charm!

Hettie’s Ella cross-body bag has your back, from country walks to quick dashes into town (unless, like us, you only went in for milk and came out lugging a loaf of bread, a bottle of wine and a box of Viennese whirls). Like the Hettie bag, this case comes in a variety of lovely hues (so you can coordinate to your heart’s content!)

Hettie’s Pet Collection shows the fun side of the company. The “stylish bow tie,” it says, “will attach to your collar with elastic.” If you’re going to market to dogs, you may as well go the whole dog (see what we did there?). Pet accessories range from little neckerchiefs to gorgeous collars any dog would be proud to wear. Check them out in-store at Madia & Matilda!

The Kate bag is for those of us who, like me, love to be prepared for every eventuality. Hand cream? Sun glasses? Pencil? Socks? Keys? Dog treats? And the great thing about this bag is (quite apart from it looking amazing) that all of the above and more will fit in it very comfortably. We’re sold.

The incredible powers of wool as a material include its sustainable nature, warmth and amazing strength as a fibre. Hettie’s accessories are produced in a way which causes very low negative impact on vulnerable ecosystems (although we can’t promise you’ll be safe from bag envy!), which is why we chose strike up a partnership with them. When you buy a Hettie product through Madia & Matilda, you’re investing in two companies which take sustainability and ethics into serious consideration: in other words, help look after the planet and look damn fine doing it!

Sincerely Madia & Matilda

Sunday, 21 January 2018

Fruity Superpowers - Grapefruit!

Grapefruit?! Why Would I Wanna Eat That?

The grapefruit is often considered a controversial fruit: some people love it, some hate it. Call it the Marmite of the fruit world.

Today, we let you in on some mind-blowing facts about the orange's humble cousin. For example, did you know that grapefruits contain a huge amount of water? They have some of the highest H2O contents of all fruits, weighing in at a hefty 92% water

These days, choosing the right foods to nourish your body can become a bit of a minefield. So much emphasis is placed on 5-a-day, vitamins, minerals, protein, calorie intakes-- and you'd better hope you're getting enough fibre! Grapefruits contain lots of vitamins A and C, contributing to a strong immune system and helping wounds to heal efficiently. 

Another thing grapefruit has in plentiful supply are antioxidants, which are hiding out in the red and pink pigments of the flesh, but also in the pith (but we're not such a huge fan of that bit). Antioxidants can help prevent or slow down damage in cells, so they should definitely go on your list if you want to give your body some proper luuurve. 

Aside from all the amazing stuff above, the scent and flavour of grapefruit can also be a huge mood boost psychologically. Citrus fruits can be super helpful as a pick-me-up: that zingy, bright-eyed smell can really help to get you in the right headspace. 

So how do you eat a grapefruit to get all these great benefits? You could do the brave thing: cut the fruit in half, sprinkle the jewelled flesh with sugar and dig in with a spoon. Or you could use this recipe featured on the Bon AppĂ©tit website for a yummy chermoula (or salsa) to go with savoury dishes. It uses honey, ginger and lemon juice, among other things, while keeping the grapefruit centre stage. 
That's all we've got to say about grapefruit! We hope that you'll think about giving it a go, whether you're on an early-2018 health kick, or just want to add something new to your fruit bowl. If you discover any amazing recipes or ways to eat grapefruit, or have any healthy eating tips, please drop us a message to

Sincerely Madia & Matilda

Tuesday, 9 January 2018

Beauty Spotlight on - Lola's Apothecary

Lola’s Apothecary

Today we are proud to introduce to you another like-minded brand whose products we sell via our website: Lola’s Apothecary! The brand is the creation of lovely Lola, and supplies our customers with incredibly fragrant things designed to nourish and pimp up your bod. “Belief in wellness and a holistic approach to life” lies firmly at the heart of Lola’s sweet self-care utopia (aka Devon). Um, can we move there please?

Indulge yourself or a loved one with a selection of the following...

The Delicate Romance Pocket Collection, with all its gorgeous rosy hues, is a perfect little taster of the delights offered by Lola’s Apothecary. Think Snape: this little package was definitely made to ‘ensnare the senses’! and a perfect unexpected gift for a loved one.

For a bath that leaves you with your skin feeling amazing (like, floating-on-clouds, double-choc-ice-cream amazing), pour a little of Lola’s award-winning “Queen of Roses” Bath Milk into your bath, hop in, and let it do its magic. Emma Watson, a huge advocate of sustainable fashion and beauty, swears by it. She calls it “amazing” and “incredible”, and we’re totally with her on that one.

Sweet Lullaby candle is made of a blend of all-natural plant waxes. Its layers of scent include a heart of lavender and ylang ylang, blended with patchouli, vanilla and sweet orange. With the recent focus on renewable energy and fuels, we’ve been extra careful to invest in non-petroleum based candles. You’re safe with this one, trust us!

This time of year can take its toll on your skin. Icy blasts outside, high central heating inside? If this sounds familiar, look no further for a skin-saving solution: Balancing Body Soufflé. Made from shea and coconut butters with camellia oil and fragranced with lots of amazing essential oils, this butter is also great as an after-sun treatment. Show your skin some love, ladies!

Tranquil Isle Bath Salt. I mean, who doesn’t need this?! 2018 has already proved just as hectic and stressful as 2017 for some of us. May we suggest pouring a small handful of this lovely stuff into a hot bath and letting everything float away for a little while? The bath salts contain chamomile, a gentle sedative, and vetivert, known for reducing tension and aiding sleep. Queue up here, and three cheers for Mother Nature!

Making and promoting great products which have a super low negative ecological impact on the planet is always our goal. We love telling you about fellow pioneers of happy, friendly products in the fashion and beauty industry, and hope you’re feeling the benefits of supporting small, local businesses!

Sincerely Madia & Matilda

Friday, 5 January 2018

What Are My Clothes Made Of?

Meet the Fabrics

This week, Madia & Matilda bring you their collective wisdom about fabrics, plus some cool stuff about being eco-friendly while you're being clothing friendly.

What d'you mean there's more ironing to do? Pass the wine Janice. 

Cotton: the Sturdy, Stand-By-Me Friend in the Squad
Cotton is pretty hardy, as fabrics go. Of the friendship group it's the dependable, wise friend you can always count on (who is also ultra-breathable and machine-washable). Cotton is a natural fibre which is lovely to wear next to the skin. 

Linen: the Comfy, Badass Grandma Who Has No Time for Your Rubbish
Another natural fibre, linen shares many of cotton's best qualities: it's breathable, durable and comfortable to wear. Linen's other great qualities are its amazing durability, non-stretchiness and keeps you cooler than cotton in the heat.

Silk: the Mind-Blowing, Ethereal, Emotionally Unstable Beauty Queen 
Silk is a natural fibre which is famously picky when it comes to care. However, it's such a beautiful fabric that many people just can't resist its charm. It's breathable, hypoallergenic and comfortable to wear, and that's just for starters! 

Wool: the Lovely Warm Grandad with the Scratchy Beard
Another natural, hypoallergenic fibre! Wool is incredible: cosy and comfy, both insulating and breathable, what's not to like?! (Unless you're vegan. Fair Play.) Wool is also dust-resistant (take that, dust allergies!). True, it can be scratchy, but nobody's perfect.

Polyester/Nylon: One Half of the Glam, Up-For-It Plastic Fantastics
Polyester and nylon are both man-made materials derived from plastic. They were invented in the '50s, and have enjoyed much fame since as a hardy material. Quick-drying and great at maintaining shape, polyester and nylon are good all-rounders. 

Acrylic: the Other Half of the Glam, Up-For-It Plastic Fantastics
Acrylic clothing is similar to polyester and nylon: versatile, easy to  wear and care for. Another synthetic plastic fibre, acrylic fibres were invented by the Germans in the '40s. If you're trying to buy less plastic, you may want to avoid buying acrylic clothing. 

Clothing Care and the Planet: Compatible?
Washing machines and electric dryers typically use lots of energy, but there are lots of ways you can cut down your energy consumption while giving your clothes great care. 
  • Wash your clothes less, e.g. wash jeans every week or so rather than every couple of days. Really, it's that simple! 
  • Use a biodegradable, petroleum-free washing detergent (see below!). Or you could use soap nuts, super cool little berries which are harvested largely from trees in India and Nepal. ("Chuck a few more nuts in the washing machine would you, honey?" Go on, you know you want an excuse to say that)
  • Give your dryer a rest (or send it into retirement) by letting your washing dry naturally. On a sunny, breezy day your washing could be dry in an hour. Amazing!
  • Make sure you're putting on full loads of washing instead of just a couple of items. This will save you money as well as reducing the amount of energy you use
  • Hand wash silk or wool items. This also reduces risk of the fabric warping or shrinking. Use a special wool/silk detergent and be gentle!
  • For other ways to make your clothing care greener, visit this link

Ecover and the Green Clean Crew
Ecover are champs of the green clean initiative. Created and based in Belgium, Ecover make effective cleaning products that smell amazing. You may have heard people saying that green cleaning products aren't as effective as mainstream, chemical-based ones, but it's just not true. Give it a go, and let us know what you think! Read more about the ethos of Ecover here.

Method also make beautiful clean products which clean beautifully well (try saying that three times fast!). Created by "former roommates" and fellow "superheroes" Adam and Eric, Method products are "gentler than a thousand puppy licks" and do a wonderful job of cleaning your home! How's that for endorsement?! For more about the Method method, click here.

Sincerely Madia & Matilda