Monthly Archives: April 2015

Maternity Photography London – sneak peek from the city

O gosh! I haven’t blogged a session in a while but I was quite busy lately. Lots of photos to edit and lots of new photos to share soon!

I am off to Italy tomorrow, where 2 baby girls and a mum-to-be are waiting to be photographed. Before leaving I wanted to share a photo I took last weekend, during a maternity session at South Bank, London. Quite a different kind of maternity photography, more urban and funky 🙂

I’m looking forward to editing the photos and show them to mum and dad!

For now here is a quick sneak peek. Very British looking right? 🙂 Loving it!

Maternity Photography London


Are you pregnant and want to remember this moment? I will be very happy to have a chat with you and see if I can be your photographer. The best time to photograph your big belly is between 32 and 36 weeks. The belly should be nicely showing and you shouldn’t be much tired yet.  I can tailor the session to your needs. You can come to my studio in South West London, we can go to a park or like these guys here choose some iconic locations in London. I can come to your place. You can be photographed alone, with your partner, children, dog. It’s your session and you decide what to do! 

Valentina specialises in natural light maternity and newborn photography, creating natural and timeless images of you and your baby. She is based in Clapham Junction and serves London including Wandsworth, Clapham, Battersea, Putney, Chelsea, Balham, Wimbledon and others.





Friday review – Hippobottymus

Last Sunday we went to the Doodle Bar in Battersea, a nice place where you can go and relax with the children. They can scribble on the chalk board wall, they can play in the outside area, there is also a Beach area (but it was quite cold and windy last week so we couldn’t try it), they offer movie night on Sunday and they host a lot of events too.

That was the reason why we actually got there.  It was Storytime Sunday, organised by The Bright Group to present to book Hippobottymus 🙂












If you read my blog you know that my daughter Amy loves books, reading, story time so we had to go to this event! We arrived a tiny bit late (always hard to get ready on a Sunday morning!) but just on time to take a sit in the colourful mattresses that were laid on the floor and enjoyed the story.

The story is quite funny, a little mouse inspired by a bubbling creek started to add some squeaky sound to make a tune. Little by little a bunch of jungle animals joins him with tweeting, tapping, booming . . . creating a lovely sound of rhythm and rhymes.

And surprise surprise! All the tune came out of that naughty hippo hidden in the creek that ate too much beans and made bubbles in the bubbling creek 🙂


The book was read by the actual illustrator Ada Grey, who knowing the story very well, interpreted it brilliantly. She encouraged the children to impersonate the animals ever time she was mentioning them, they were squeaking like a mouse, tweeting like a bird . . .  they all had great fun and they all were involved in the story!  At the end they kind of summarised the book going through a few actions the animal did during the story and of course the funniest one: pretending to make bubbles from the botty 🙂


After the story every child received a bag with crafty stuff to make their own hippobottymus! Cardboard, googly eyes, glue, paws, bubbles, stick, everything to make one.  Other activities like colouring, decorating bunnies and making an ester egg were all part of the morning. Donations were collected for the Great Ormond Street Hospital.


I still can’t remember how I found this in the first place, but they told me they are doing this event once a month, so I highly recommend to check them out. Next event will be 17th May.

Amy liked the story and we bought the book (and got a signed copy!)



Time for an oil change?

This is a guest post written by Jayne Russell, the lovely owner of Nom Nom, certified organic, multi-award winning pregnancy and baby skincare products.

We shared a table at the recent Clapham Pregnancy and Baby Show where she displayed her range of products and I asked her to write an article about baby oil.














As a massage and nutritional therapist of more than twenty years, specialising in pre and postnatal care, and a skin care formulator I have been constantly researching and updating my knowledge to find out what works best for baby skin. Oils have different properties, benefits and disadvantages so which should you use and avoid in baby massage and skincare?

The International Association of Infant Massage recommends “babies be massaged with a high quality, preferably organic, unscented, cold pressed vegetable oil”.

A recent study found that “olive oil significantly damages the skin barrier, and therefore has the potential to promote the development of, and exacerbate existing, “atopic dermatitis” concluding that its use in infant massage should be discouraged. This may come as a surprise to many who are still being advised by a health practitioner to use the very same on their baby’s dry skin!

Johnson’s Baby, who were involved in funding this study, have used the finding in a recent advertorial to denigrate ALL natural oils. The truth is you do need to be careful with your choice of oils for delicate baby skin, particularly where there is a tendency to sensitivity or eczema, but mineral oils are certainly not the best alternative.

Sharon Trotter midwife and baby skincare expert advises they:

• create a greasy and sticky texture that is not a good medium for massage

• create a film or barrier on the skin which means skin cannot breath properly or eliminate toxins, which could lead to allergies or dryness

• do not absorb, leaving a layer of oil on the skin which is slippery

• provide no ‘nutritional’ value to nourish the skin

I would add that it is usually artificially fragranced, itself a cause of sensitivity and irritation.

Well-chosen plant oils by contrast can have very positive benefits for the skin. They:

  • Absorb and are chemically similar to the fats under our skin.
  • Carry fat soluble vitamins into the skin which help to nourish
  • Enhance the skin’s protective functioning without blocking the pores
  • Can help meet the body’s essential fatty acid requirements resulting in softer skin less prone to eczema.

However, you also need to wary of potentially sensitising nut oils, particularly where there is a tendency to eczema and allergies – peanut and tree nut oils such as almond and the seed oil sesame are all high on the list of sensitising ingredients.


So which are the best oils to use on your baby’s skin?

Oils which are low in oleic fatty acids (thought to be responsible for olive oils adverse effect) and high in linoleic, such as sunflower or starflower and evening primrose oil (both rich in GLA, which is particularly beneficial for dry, irritated skin and cradle cap) or coconut are the most suitable and favourable for baby skin.

Look after your oils by storing them in a cool place away from direct light and check the best before date. And use your nose – it is always a good idea to sniff an oil before use to check it still smell fresh!


I hope you enjoyed the article and if you want more information and advice on baby skincare you can download Jayne’s FREE eBook “10 Steps to Super Healthy Baby Skin” from her website





National Siblings Day – family Love

We all know about Mother’s day and Father’s day, well of course we do 🙂

We have other celebrations like women’s day, international worker’s day, grandparents day . . . Then there some “funny” days here and there during the year like Pancake day, Red Nose day, the cupcake week some of them charity related.

But did you know about the National Siblings Day?!?

Honestly I didn’t until I started seeing posts around Facebook and Twitter early today and I got curious about it. The date is actually 10th of April and it’s an American celebration and that’s why I read about it this morning! It’s an occasion for siblings to recognise and celebrate each other, like mother’s or father’s day, celebrate the value and the love of the family.

So even if it’s an American celebration I decide to “join it” because it’s a good thing. I have two brothers and I’m the middle one. We have different ages, we live in different places but luckily we are still pretty close and support each other 🙂

This morning I looked for a photo of us three but sadly I have to say I didn’t have any recent one. I have photos when we were younger or photos of just the two of us but not all together. We definitely have to provide for that!!

So I will share a photo of my niece and nephew to celebrate the sibling love. I always try to take some photographs of them when I have the chance to see them a few times a year, but that actually reminds me that my brothers are as important too! And we should get a photo together too, even if we are not as young, beautiful and fun as those monkey below 😉

So a little message for you all: “Be in photography with your loved ones, always!” #existinphotos


Vale x




Baby Nora – Newborn Photographer South West London

I am currently working on this baby who came to my studio in Battersea a few days ago, when she was 2 weeks old. I just wanted to share a quick sneak peek for mum & dad until waiting for the rest.

This is probably one of my favourite photos from the newborn session, with baby peacefully snugged and sleepy in the wooden nut. Well, probably the only time when she was asleep actually! AH AH AH AH

But they are just little babies. I have some tricks to help them to sleep but sometimes it’s just not the right time 🙂  Sometimes I can see parents are a bit stressed if their babies are not sleepy, they apologise even if they could do something. Really don’t worry! They are the boss 😉 And they will be always more your boss. Fact.  With a bit of patience, your baby will relax and settle down and I promise I will give you some cute sleepy photos.

Welcome to the world little Nora!


Newborn Photographer South West London

While you are expecting, it is the perfect time to look into newborn photography, so you are prepared and you have the chance to meet and get to know your photographer.

I will arrange a free consultation for you and you can see the beautiful range of products and the different options according to your budget. You can learn more about newborn or maternity photography in the links.

Valentina specialises in natural light maternity and newborn photography, creating natural and timeless images of your baby. She is based in Clapham Junction and serves London including Wandsworth, Clapham, Battersea, Putney, Chelsea, Balham, Wimbledon and others.





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