Blog & Buy Sale Christmas Wish List - Top 5 Picks

The 2014 Christmas wish list over on blog & buy sale has gone live and I am lucky enough to have 3 products in there! It's fair to say that I'm in VERY company. Every time a new list is published it gets better and better and is filled to the brim with talented designers and creative people. 

It's been a tough choice but as always I like to choose my top 5 and tell you all a little bit about them. It gets harder and harder every time but here we go!

These lovely pots instantly caught my eye. They are hand thrown and are available in English and Welsh and 4 different colours. I have a thing for duck egg blue at the moment so these would be my colour of choice. You can buy them here.

Give me sunshine yellow any day of the week! It's one of those happy colours and this plate is just that, happy. I don't think I could bare to eat my dinner off of it though. I would put it on the wall just to smile at. Pop over here to buy this lovely bone china plate.

This absolutely brilliant and is just my type of card. I don't take Christmas seriously, like at all. I'm bit of a bah hum bug really. I love cards with silly, slightly insulting sentiments on them. They're just light hearted fun really. If you want know someone this would be perfect for, pop over here.

I love anything to do with the sky (and woodlands but thats another area altogether). I've been eyeing these up for so long and the cloud wrapping paper for that matter but if I buy anymore mugs I will get in trouble because I already have far too many. There is also a moon phases one available (that one is my absolute fave). I wonder if I can sneak one into my cupboard... If you fancy sneaking one into yours pop over here.

As mentioned above, another one of my favourites is woodlands so this was the perfect final addition to my top 5. This beautiful tray is Handmade in Sweden from Scandinavian birch wood, and certified according to FSC-standard. Anna also makes lovely cushions, prints and stationery! Pop over here for a browse.

Want to browse the rest of the goodies for sale over on the Christmas Wish List? Of course you do, pop over here to visit the goodness!

Product Photography -

A little while ago, the lovely Alice Potter got in touch about an article she was writing for the blog and wanted to know a little bit about my product photography.

My photography has come along way since I started back in 2011. It's probably something to do with the fact that I'm never happy. I have re-taken my images several times and each time they have got better and better (I look forward to seeing how they progress over the next few years).

I gave Alice my top tips, well the things that I feel is the most important to help you get the most of your photos and camera. If you want a read pop over to the blog. She has also spoken to the amazing Holly Booth who takes some of the most beautiful product shots and Harriet Gray from Hello Harriet who makes cute illustrated goodies. It's worth a browse if you're looking to update your images or are in need of a few helpful tips.

Penguins & Polar Bears

This week I kicked off my 'little face' project. I wanted to make something for Christmas stocking fillers that wasn't entirely focused on Santa or Snow Men. So, instead of I opted for cute little penguins and a polar bear. There are boy and girl penguins and come in both grey or black. I must admit though, the polar bear is definitely my favourite. He is so simple yet very cute.

I'm hoping to slowly add to my little face range and I already have a cat sat on my desktop waiting for the finishing touches to be added. Are there any animals out there that you would like to see added to this collection? I already have a woodland creature set so I have to step away from those even though they are my favourite animals to draw. I'll get my thinking cap on!

As always, these little cuties have already been added to my shop if you fancy one!

IBRA BeeWorld Project - Guatemala

Yesterday I received an email from one of my lovely clients about on an on-going project that we've been working on for some time. Although this time, rather a list of amends or a new page to add I had a rather different file in my inbox. I received this simple photo:

This may not look like much but this really made me smile. This little boy is in Guatemala is happily filling in one page from the IBRA BeeWorld Project Education Pack that I spent countless hours and late nights working on.

All of that time converting block coloured flowers and bees into tiny little outlines for that one colouring page, all made worth it just by seeing these happy children. However, the BeeWorld Project isn't just about colouring in and drawing bee's. It's a lot more than that. It's about teaching the next generation about bee's, bee keeping, and conservation of bee's and their habitats. This is a little snapshot of some of the children in Guatemala who are taking part in Proyecto Santa Tomas.

Proyecto Santo Tomas
Located in: Guatemala 
"Proyecto Santo Tomas (PST) was founded by community member Nelson Morales, who has a big heart for his small pueblo and for the natural environment. In addition to a tree nursery he founded to reforest the hillsides, an after-school PE program for local children, and a small library he runs out of his house, Nelson took it upon himself to save the disappearing honey bees of Guatemala. With nothing but his own resourcefulness, Nelson founded a refuge in his backyard and began taking in unwanted bee colonies that would otherwise have been burned or cut down. He taught himself to care for the hives, and to responsibly harvest honey. He began a number of educational outreach initiatives in local schools and with farmer’s cooperatives to teach the community about the vital importance of honey bees to local agriculture and to the ecosystem overall. He visits neighbors to teach them to care for hives on their property and hosts community events to share his delicious organic honey and teach about bee conservation. Now with some support from a local social business, Soluciones Comunitarias, and IBRA, the movement is starting to take hold in the community. The project is small, but poco a poco, we hope will make a great difference for the honey bees of Huehuetenango, Guatemala!"

The BeeWorld Project is in two parts. There is the education pack, which is primarily aimed at children. It covers a wide range of ages and has something for everyone. There are simple matching activities, arty makes, word searches and even dances to learn. And then on the other hand there are pages full of information such as the different types of bee's, how honey is made and a full glossary of need to know terms.

If you work with children and would like to download a copy of the education pack then you can pop over here: and choose whether you would like the English, Welsh or Australian version of the pack.

Other than schools, the IBRA BeeWorld Project team are working with communities in the UK and internationally to gain a better knowledge of beekeeping and suitable habitats. They value all species of bee and their current programs are helping to educate the next generation, support bee conservation and habitats, promote global sustainability and are helping research scientists in developing countries get their voices heard.

If you would like more information on anything to do with the BeeWorld Project please pop over to the BeeWorld website. It's a wealth of information of how you can take part, donate or even have a look on the interactive map to see how other countries have got involved.

I look forward to seeing more updates like this popping into my inbox and thanks to IBRA for letting me share this with you all.

Monty the Penguin

Have you had a chance to see the new John Lewis advert? Oh my days, Monty the Penguin is absolutely lovely. Every year, John Lewis makes a beautiful advert that tugs at the heart strings but leaves you feeling all warm and fuzzy inside. Who can forget the snow man going to buy his snow lady a gift? Or the bear who was going to miss Christmas because he was sleeping?

These are the sort of adverts that you won't forget in hurry. They're sweet, you want to keep watching and most importantly they're memorable. They are not the standard sell, sell, sell Christmas adverts. They get people talking and they're something you actually enjoy watching which doesn't usually happen.

John Lewis, you've done it again *high five* you clever lot!

Spicy Hen

My little badges seem to be doing the rounds at the moment not that I'm complaining one little bit! This time my whole collection have spread their wings and have landed over on the Spicy Hen Blog.

Spicy Hen are hen party planning experts and their website caters for a whole range of tastes, whether you're a night owl, creative type or someone who loves to be pampered, there is something to suit you. So, if you're in the process of planning your big night. Its worth a ganders. Not only that but Spicy Hen has an exclusive discount for my badge and mirror range. But you'll have to pop over to their blog to find it.

Very important bride - Save the date magazine

A few weeks ago I was asked by Save The Date Magazine to create some VIP badges for the VIP section of their 'wedding event with a difference'. And this is the outcome! I went down the dusty pink and purple floral route with a lovely border of illustrated flowers and the text set inside. I hope the brides liked them! These are now available in both my Etsy and NOTHS stores.

I have made them available as both badges and mirrors. These 'very important bride' mirrors or badges are the perfect gift for any bride to be. It will make her feel special and is perfect for letting others know how important she is on that all important hen party!

Creative Brides

My little hen party badges have popped up again! This time they have found their way into Creative Brides Magazine. I was absolutely over the moon of course and couldn't wait to get my hands on a printed copy. The magazine is available in print and a digital version to read online. If you fancy having a browse at the gorgeous dresses, pretty flowers and generally being nosey like I do, you can read the magazine online by clicking here.

If you haven't yet come across this magazine and you're planning a wedding, pop over! The website is full of other peoples lovely stories, fashion and accessories, suppliers, how to's, DIY's and has lots and lots of downloads for those on a budget. Enjoy!

Save the date - wedding events with a difference

Last week I spent a very long time sorting artwork, printing, cutting, pressing and packing these little gems. I put together a box of goodies for save the date magazine's latest wedding event which is happening this weekend! Its on Sunday 19th October 2014 at the Nottingham Conference Centre in case anyone wanted to hunt down some last minute tickets. If you're attending the event you might be lucky enough to find one of my badges, pocket mirrors, bottle openers or even a wedding activity book in your goodie bag. If you want a little more info on the event please click here.

I'm not going to lie, I'm not even engaged and I want to go! It looks beautiful! If you're not going to the event its worth looking through the magazine because that too is full of inspiring images, articles and has lots of local suppliers for the East Midlands. It also gives you an insight to the weddings of other people, which is another thing I love being nosey at. You can have a look at that by clicking here.

I have also made some super special badges for the very important brides but I'll show you those later on once I know they have been received! In the mean time, all badges featured in this image are currently available in my stores.

Christmas 2014

Christmas 2014 has landed! I have pocket mirrors with mini cards (great for stocking fillers), Santa delivery receipts for proof that Santa has been and exists, folded and rolled scroll letters from Santa and behaviour charts with personalised magnets as an alternative count down to Christmas for the little ones to encourage good behaviour.

To celebrate the launch of this Christmas collection I am offering 20% off of the entire range in my Etsy shop! All you need to do is enter the code CHRISTMAS2014 when you reach the checkout and the discount will automatically be calculated. There is free UK shipping on all products. Happy shopping!

Woodland Friends

Late last year I sold my last prints of these lovely chaps and put them into retirement. The size print I had created a bit awkward to say the least and it turned out to be bit of a faff. These were originally created for an exhibition of Character Beermats that I was in with Inkygoodness.

Over the last few weeks I have pulled these creatures out of retirement and have found a new use for their lovely faces! You may have already seen on my social media but these are now available as pocket mirrors and magnets! I'm really pleased with how bright and vibrant the print has come out.

They have all been listed in both of my online stores and I have even made a special discount code for anyone ordering through Etsy. Just enter the code WOODLANDFRIENDS at the checkout and you will receive 20% off of anything that you decide order until September 1st 2014. Fingers crossed these go down well!

Wedding Activity Book for Children

I am so excited to tell you that my Wedding Activity Book for Children has now been listed in both of my shops! It really has been a long time coming and I've had many hurdles that I have had to try and jump over, but it's finally done and I couldn't be happier with the end result.

This book features 18 pages of activities for children to complete whilst they are sat at the dinner table and when the adults are making boring speeches that the children might not really be interested in. There are many things to including a word search, crossword, I-Spy, design your own cake, spot the difference, plus many many more.

It is A5 in size so it is a perfect size for completing at the table and it has been printed on uncoated paper. This means that your little one can happily use felt tip pens (if you are brave enough) without them running straight off onto everything else.

Fingers crossed the little people enjoy completing them as much as I did designing them.

Happy Planets

Let's start this week with a bit of happy because lets face it, Monday's aren't exactly everyone's favourite day of the week. They definitely aren't my favourite.

Last week I managed to finally get these little happy things listed in my NOTHS and Etsy shop and are both available as pocket mirrors or magnets. Everyone needs a little happy to carry around with them and so I made some pocket size pieces for just when you need some. They also fit my little motto just right: 'happy design for happy people'. Do you think I've said happy enough times yet?

Blog and Buy Sale - Summer Wish List Top Picks

Earlier this week the blog and buy sale summer wish list went live and as usual I entered a couple products into the list (I'm yet to miss one, even though I almost forgot this one!). Here I have featured my tooth fairy receipts (top row), personalised ombre hen party badges (middle row) and my personalised thank you teacher pocket mirror (bottom row).

There really are some cracking products from lots of small businesses over there and I've tried to whittle it down to my top 5 picks but it's so hard do that when there is so much talent. Anyway, these are my personal favourites in no particular order:

'Statement earrings featuring a stylised trees with a little bird and a little fox on the other side. Soldered within a hand forged irregular open circle for an organic feel and finished with a lovely frosted texture which has a subtle sparkle and is slightly rough to the touch.The overall diameter of each earring is approx. 4.4cm.'

I'm not usually one for jewellery as such because I'm not actually allowed to wear it to the day job so most of it just passes me by. But, I absolutely love anything to do with woodlands and the creatures that reside inside of them (even some of the ugly looking ones). So these were always going to catch my eye. The fact that the lines are not perfectly straight adds an element of charm and playfulness to them.

'Inspire someone with this original framed papercut. Featuring a farm-scape surrounding the quote "Every day is a good day, some are just better than others", this is hand cut from a sheet of white hammer paper. Measuring approx 7" x 7", the artwork is suspended over a sky blue textured paper, finished off beautifully in a white 10" x 10" box frame.'

Work that has an inspiring message behind can go a long away, especially if you're having one of 'those' days when nothing really goes as you want it too. Sometimes it's all you need to make you realise that maybe today hasn't been as bad as you think. 

'Juicy Mail is a set of 4 fruity gift cards.Each envelope can be peeled open like the fruit they represent. Once you write your greetings on the note card, put the card into the base of the envelope. Peel the adhesive strip and seal. The recipient will get the pure fun of peeling the envelope through the perforations. Perfect for party invitations!'

How great are these? I really love a quirky bit of stationary and this set really has raised the bar. It's not very often that I get happy post and these would most certainly be welcome, especially if you get to peel the letter open like an actual piece of fruit.

'Hello, we are Bread & Jam. We are a small creative team making fabulous things for your home and to give as gifts to friends and loved ones. Our philosophy is simple, take a really great quality basic and sweeten it up using our own designs.Whether our work is pattern or word based, our aim remains the same, we want you to pick up any of our pieces and raise a little smile.'

Did someone say adventure? YES PLEASE! There is nothing that makes me happier than visiting a new country, being stuck on the side of mountain in the crisp fresh air or wandering through woods and places that I have yet to explore. There is something about it that just gives you an extra boost of happy. Does anyone else feel that way or is it just me? Speaking of adventures, I need to hurry up and book my next one...

'This fabulous piece of statement art features 9 map locations of your choice from anywhere in the world. Or if you just like the idea of maps, any maps, allow us to choose for you. We'll select fine pieces based on colour and texture. Just tell us which map locations!'

I love love love this! Continuing with the previous theme of travel and adventure, this a fantastic alternative to the pins in the map scenario that I was thinking of doing. I know you only get 9 here but I would definitely set a side a wall for this and just fill it with all the lovely places that I have been and slowly build it up over time. Definitely a classy alternative to a standard wall map. The variety of textures, colours and density of the landscape would make a brilliant talking point. Unfortunately I can't make the image any bigger without it losing quality so if you want to see bigger you'll have to pop over to their site and check them out!

Okay, that's it! Those were my top picks but please go ahead and check out the rest of the wish list, you won't be disappointed and you might even find your next cheeky purchase. I hope you enjoyed my list. Have a great weekend guys! :)

How to turn your hobby into a business - guest post

This morning I had a lovely email from the folks at to let me know that a guest post I had done for them has now gone live over on their blog!

I talk about how and why I started my own little business, the social media that I use and a few other little tips that I picked up along the way. I am by no means an expert and I'm still learning new things every day. It was a great opportunity just to let people know my story.

I won't give too much away here. So, if you fancy a little read just click here and you can have a read for yourself :)

What's on your desk?

Hello again, I haven't vanished, I promise! 

It's been another week since I managed to update this blog which is a little naughty after I set this up to try and blog a little more regularly. However, I have had good reasons I promise. One of them being my little shop. It's kept me rather busy this week which is a good thing. Not only that but I've been waiting to buy some new reading material to try and help me create posts that nice people like you will actually want to read. 

During today's down pour I ran from the car into my local W H Smith and scoured the shelves for all the special editions that Mollie Makes have recently published. After a lot of face pulling and trying to decide what I really wanted I went for Mollie Makes: Blogging - The Big Guide To Creative Content and Mollie Makes: Photography - Craft . Style . Shoot . Share

I haven't actually time to sit down and read both yet but just from flicking through them in the car I saw a lot of things that grabbed my attention that I must without a doubt go back and read. There are tips on marketing through most of the social media platforms and great blogging tips (which I think I could do with to be honest!)

This then lead me onto my desk, as, I had actually been out buying some new shelving units because you can't see my desk through all the paperwork. I love being nosey at other peoples desks and wondered what you have on yours? The best items on mine at the moment are these two magazines, colourful gel pens (who wants boring colours rights?) and a lovely bar of galaxy which is my little treat for when I eventually manage to tick a few more items off of the to do list! So what's on your desk? What couldn't you do with out?

Hello there!

Hello again! Welcome to my new refreshed blog. Since you last saw me (Mr Fox) I have changed blogging platforms and will soon have a fancy new url.

On this blog you will find a variety of things. There will be posts about work in progress, completed projects, things I may need your opinion on, bits about my shop including discounts and coupon codes, things that I generally find interesting and most importantly the odd free download for you guys!

But for now I have a few tweaks to make and then we are good to go! Yippeee!