Welcome to Dottie Maie ~ we hope you adore our curated collections of handmade & heirloom pieces. And that you find they bring you & your little ones lots of joy in your everyday moments. We are currently soaking up the arrival of our son ~ orders will be sent as soon as possible around family life. Thank you for your continuous support x
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Our volume 3 features Hannah, an inspiring mum and maker. We love her style and gentle photographs of her baby boy Oscar and their beautiful home. We asked her a few questions to find out what it is like to go back to work after having a baby, what books and music she likes and how she copes with lack of sleep...

1. Where do you live? How old is your son? 

I live in York (England, UK) with my husband, Ben and my 10 month old son, Oscar. 

 2. Do you work? What are your hobbies?

I returned to my job in the NHS a few weeks ago and I have mixed feelings about it! Prior to maternity leave I did love my job, and I’m sure that once I get back into it I will again, but having time out has really helped me to re-assess my priorities, and also to reignite my creative side after 11 years in a job which afforded very little in the way of a creative outlet.

 3. How do you relax?

I love to knit if I get a free moment; concentrating on the stitches is one of the only things that I’ve found helps me to ‘zone out’, and stop my mind racing at 100mph, which it usually is. During the day I try hard to give Oscar all of my attention, so going for long walks around York with him is a great way to relax after chasing after him all morning! Come evening, nothing beats a long, hot bath and a glass of wine.

 4. Do you have any tips on coping with being tired?

I really struggled with tiredness in the first 6 months of Oscar’s life as he was a truly terrible sleeper, and am only recently beginning to feel human again. I’m not sure that this is very good advice, but I mostly relied on caffeine and sugar to get me through the day! That  and a bit of ‘mind over matter’ self-therapy: tell yourself that any negative or irrational thoughts are normal, and just down to exhaustion; that you’re not going crazy and it won’t last forever.

5. What is the last book/magazine you read?

Magazine: the second issue of The Fourth Trimester. Book: I can’t remember the last time I read a novel, but I regularly have a leaf through The Wonder Weeks.

6. Where do you shop clothes for you and your child?

My latest favourite pieces are from Whistles, Jigsaw and Zara. For Oscar, M&S and Zara kids are great for staples but I love to shop from some of the brilliant independent online stores such as Sophie & Co and Sylvie Anne childrenswear, where each piece is made by hand.

7. Your latest favourite band/musician?

I love SIA’s latest album.

8. What is your secret to a good photo of your child?

Soon after Oscar’s morning nap and after a small milk feed is usually the best time for me to catch him playing happily; he usually looks up at me on hearing the first few shutter clicks, but my favourite captures are of him deep in his own little world, singing away to his toys!

9. Why do you like S&B KIDS?

I love the natural materials and soft, muted shades of S&B wooden toys; they look beautiful and they are definitely ones to put on display in Oscar’s nursery, rather than put away. I also adore the character and quirkiness of the wooden animals; looking at each sweet piece you can see just how they might come to life in a child’s mind. 

10. What is your favourite item from our shop?

My favourite piece is the wooden leaf puzzle - I love the idea that when Oscar is bigger he will learn the names of different trees, and their leaf shapes and colour of the wood as he plays! Oscar has the sweet stacking kitten firmly in his hand most of the day.

Thank you so much Hannah! To see more of Hannah's beautiful photos head over to her Instagram feed. @hannah.straughan. She has also recently made this wonderful video. Truly stunning!

Items in Hannah's home from our shop: 

Charlotte/ stacking kitten - £9.50 , wooden leaf puzzle - £35.00 , personalised toys bag - £35.00,  Arthur - pull along drummer - £14.50, learn animal names games - £10.00, Martha & Theodore - mice - £9.50