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We’ve Moved!

December 3, 2010


What are you still doing here? We’ve moved to and are going to be ‘shutting’ down this link in just a few short days. Don’t worry all the old content from this site has already been moved to the new home. So go to the new site now and rebookmark/sign up/ subscribe etc. to make sure you don’t miss out!

Thanks and see you on the other side…



We’re Moving!

November 29, 2010

The paint isn’t even dry and already we’ve unpacked in our new home at

It’s a bit of cosmetic uplift with some room to grow in the future, but most importantly, you can continue to find whatever it is that you like about us at the new address. For some of you who already use this url (as it redirects), it will stay the same. No more from now on (we’ve shed the ‘wordpress’ part), which means for those of you who subscribe, thank you and and see below to find out how you can continue to get your postal delivery.

To subscribe to the new feed:

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twitter: no worries for you, it’s all is the same!

If you have any questions, please let me know at hello[at], and hope to be seeing you around the neighborhood! Now go visit !!

Just a bit of Blurb…

November 18, 2010

Joy to the world! I’m on a roll, ticking off things on the eternal to do list. This one goes way back a few years…well ongoing really, to find  a way of seeing our photographs after the event, and one that did not involve computer slideshows. I always had good intentions of scrapbooks and uber design but nearly seven years on and no closer to finishing my ‘trip to england’ sketchbook, I thought it was time to get real. I decided to create some photobooks with an online service and had plans to design intro pages and really make my mark on it, even if I wasn’t cutting things apart and glueing them down. Hah, that was two and a half years ago. A few weeks ago I got real and bashed out a cleanly designed book that isn’t full of bells and whistles, but is in fact full of pictures (yay!) and a smattering of information with dates and locations as page folios (where you would usually have page numbers). And there is the odd quote or highlight to a place. Just enough to make me feel like it wasn’t done by someone else, but not enough to send me over the edge.

I chose blurb as the service (because I liked the logo and website. how lazy) and thought I would start with one book to make sure I didn’t get everything set up for a slew of books only to find out their books were awful or something. Originally when I set up the files back in 2008 (no I’m not kidding), they only had an online book service, where you uploaded photos and placed them using their software. I thought that would drive me bonkers not being able to have full control as I would in a design program, so I thought I’d design the book in inDesign as normal and then export it as jpegs and upload an image per page (which would in fact be an image of the design as opposed to individual pictures). Well my patience, or procrastination was a blessing in disguise as now they have a template and upload feature for indesign which meant I could make one pdf, upload and voila, it was done!

I chose the most expensive option with ‘premium paper’ and hardback cover. I didn’t want a messy dustjacket that was only going to get damaged, or a softcover that was bent. The cover is excellent as it is an imagewrap, so if you had a panoramic picture wide enough with a large enough quality you could have an image going the whole way around. I designed ours with the picture bleeding over the spine and wrapping around to the back with a solid colour back with some type. Nice and simple. It covers from mid 2004 to mid 2006 and is under 120 pages and came to £36 with shipping which was definitely worth it. I’m ordering Volume 2 tonight (while I”m on a roll, I might as well keep it going) and then I’ll probably need a volume 3,4 and 5 to catch us up to present day. I’m so excited about our little personal library of coloured books! PLUS this is a definite tick for Number 6 of the ol’ ten commandments 2010. Got to cram them all in before the arrival of Mrs. 2011 in a few short weeks!

I love lovebirds…

November 17, 2010

I have a real thing for statement gold animal rings. I bought a gold rabbit ring from new look for a fiver a few months ago and sadly it turned my hand green on its second wearing, so I reckon I need to step up to the Marc Jacobs lovebird rings. I know, not strictly an animal, but close enough. And twice as nice, as there are two…In fact, it’s like a buy one get one free to pass on to a friend? Any takers?

Ring retails at £85

Tin Time! Part 2

November 16, 2010

Yesterday, I revealed my guilty pleasure of Christmas tins and you probably thought I was a wee bit crazy excited over some tins. Oh but there’s more! I also picked up a few of these styles (my ability to pack our little studio flat from top to bottom is impressive). The top square tin of shortbread is a bit more from the ‘Sasek’ illustration collection, like the routemaster bus, and has a Pillar Box on it, so obviously that had to make its way into our home somehow!

The Swiss Biscuit Collection tin is a remake of last years uber successful tin which is illustrated by Sanna Annukka, a half Finnish half English illustrator (the artist behind the Keane “Under the Iron Sea” album artwork). The tin has a fabulous matte silk finish with embossing on the illustration and feels super luxurious and not at all like  ‘supermarket’ packaging. And again, a great use of type that doesn’t shout ‘I’m a naff package from 2010’. Well done M & S, you’ve driven me to becoming a tin hoarder in one day flat and with enough cookies to last until next Christmas. Guess it’s time for a cuppa tea?

These tins are part of the Marks & Spencer Christmas Collection. Photographs by Pillar Box Post

If you like this, make sure you check out the other Christmas tin on offer from M & S

Getting into the Christmas mood? Check out these christmas windows from 2009

Part 1: Bonpoint, Aubin & Wills and Ted Baker Christmas Windows

Part 2: Daylesford Organic and Notting Hill Bookshop

Part 3: Loft Design & Toast

Part 4: Pedlars & Anthropologie

Tin Time!

November 15, 2010

We’ve skipped right past fall and wham, it seems like it’s Christmas time already! David is keeping me on a tight ‘No christmas until the first of December’ regime but it’s. so. hard. Home Alone music is playing in my head, the wind is whistling the windows and I’m getting sucked into pre Christmas-Christmas shopping offers. I managed to pick up some treats for myself and for a few others at Marks & Spencer* this weekend…AND for half price! I’m always drooling at their packaging, but they’ve really gone above and beyond with this collection of biscuit  (cookie & cracker) tins for Christmas. If I saw them in a boutique store I would pay good money for them…but as the luck would have it, I paid around £2.50-£5 per tin AND got all the treats inside.

The ‘biscuits for cheese’ tin just might be my favourite as it is super simple, yet with a real twist. The darling mousehole line drawing and simple typography (that doesn’t give the era away) and then *squeak squeak* a mouse perched on top! The routemaster bus on the other hand is a straight tribute to Sasek (if not his artwork itself), the creator of the 50’s books ” This is London”, and would make a great London souvenir. The bus tin is probably about a foot long, and the mouse tin even larger, so will be really useful holding something, somewhere in the house. Who knows what yet, but I couldn’t resist. One for christmas, one for me…one for christmas, one for me…tis the season to be giving, eh?

*Marks & Spencer for the non English folk is a department store that sells clothing, furniture, electronics and has an excellent food hall. We aren’t talking Walmart level here, we’re talking utter loveliness in packaging, food etc.

Getting into the Christmas mood? Check out these christmas windows from 2009

Part 1: Bonpoint, Aubin & Wills and Ted Baker Christmas Windows

Part 2: Daylesford Organic and Notting Hill Bookshop

Part 3: Loft Design & Toast

Part 4: Pedlars & Anthropologie


November 10, 2010

I’ve been banging on about these collars for over a year (here or here) and finally someone is taking heed—ASOS has made me my own collection of peter pan collar dresses and blouses.*

Starting from top left, clockwise:

Mustard shift dress £46 , Silky Blouse £26, Dress £28, Mustard 60s shift dress £36, Silky Blouse £26 all available from ASOS

*There is a very small possibility that they aren’t just for me…

East End Pub Crawl through your house

November 9, 2010

Ooh, always on the lookout for London souvenirs that don’t require you to throw out all your design scruples, I’m really liking these cushions by Mr. Wingate. Part of his East End Pub Crawl Series, the cushions (and tea towels) feature pubs from the East side of  London. Would be perfect if you were lucky enough to have your ‘local’* illustrated…and perfect kind of souvenier that folds up flat in the bottom of your suitcase (sans stuffing obviously).

East End Pub Crawl Cushions £35

East End Pub Crawl Teatowels £10

All have been cut, printed and sewn in London.

* (the) local : English colloquialism meaning one’s local drinking establishment, public house, bar

B is for Baby Artwork

November 8, 2010

Last year when one of my best friends announced she was pregnant I was obviously excited for her and her husband and then quite quickly moved onto…’right, so what am I going to make for her…” This brain movement happens a lot, but what doesn’t happen a lot is that actual making. I just never make the decisions or put the plan into action. BUT FINALLY it’s happened, granted it’s 9 months after the birth, but better late than never!

As I’ve mentioned before I have a bit of a thing for origami, so it seemed like a good place to start when creating something child appropriate artwork. I initially intended to make a bit of a chaotic animal scene, but it was proving too taxing so it morphed into a bit of a name/alphabet game. I worked in some personal things like pets names as well as other ‘boy’ related items. Next I created patterns and textures, developed the (sad to say) probably unrealistic origami version of the animals and voila 5 x7 cards sized to fit in standard ikea frames to be displayed in a group on a wall, or used as cards or learning tool…possibilities are endless! Whew, the joy of actually finishing something is almost too much to bear, so all I have left to say is Congratulations again Lauren!

Take note…

November 4, 2010

I have a bit of a notebook foible. I get way over excited about beautiful notebooks, covet and collect them…and then not use them because, well they are too beautiful. I know…clever. But perhaps as these are the price of a muji notebook ( my go-to generic notebook source) perhaps I could even manage to use them. They are made using 100% post consumer recycled paper,  printed by a socially responsible co-operative with Green Mark accreditation and are FSC certified. Plus they use vegetable oil based inks and printing processes, which reduce waste and improve environmental performance. Which all sounds nice, plus their pages are made from reject sheets sourced by the cooperative. Best of all £9.00 for 3!

Paperback notebooks by Tamasyn Gambell

spotted in monocle