If you’re at a loss for something to do this weekend, then think about hopping on the tube and heading to The Ideal Home Show at Christmas to bag yourself some bargains and get you feeling that Christmas vibe! I was invited along to the show on Wednesday and at a loss for childcare took the kid along (the thought of this massively stressed me out) but the place blew her mind! The fake snow outside the venue complete with Father Christmas’s sleigh was enough to get her shrieking with excitement, and that’s before we’d even stepped inside.
Katie Piper and Laurence Llewelyn Bowen opened the doors and cut the ceremonial ribbon. Laurence clearly having done this many a time before as he reeled out the cheesy comments and jokes about Santa’s sack and ball balls, which yes, I did laugh along to. Once inside, it’s hard to describe the size of the venue, it’s enormous!! Spread over two (possibly three!?) huge rooms, there were hundreds of little stalls to look at. The halls were split into sections like food, beauty and fashion with stalls selling everything from jewellery, hair straighteners, chocolate, gin (yep, totally clocked that one) fitness machines to arcade machines. There is also a tonne of Christmas paraphernalia there, I really had to shepherds crook myself away from some of the stalls as there was so much to potentially buy. There was also a stage were some rather fabulous ladies were singing some lovely Christmas swing songs, the kid couldn’t stop waving at them.
Possibly the highlight of my day was that I got to meet and chat to the amazing Katie Piper. We were there to talk to her about her new book to find out about her role as The Ideal Home Show’s beauty and fashion ambassador, but quite frankly I think she could’ve talked to us about what we did and our lives all day instead. She was completely at ease with us and happy to show me photos on her phone of her little girl, even showing my kid a video clip of her daughter to distract her. She told us how she’s been doing the Ideal Home Show for about three years now, and how she’s keen to break the mould of the classic fashion model. She wants to see more people with disabilities, scars, burns etc on stage. We use plus size models now, so why not models from these other groups too? She was a fascinating, warm, friendly woman and I will be reading her book with interest and no doubt, with some tears too.
All in all, it was a wonderful venue with so much to do and see. If you’re in need of some Christmas spirit and a gift idea or two, then grab a ticket for £15. The show ends on Sunday.
Thank you to the Ideal Home Show Christmas for inviting me along for the day. All words are my own.