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Ola Origami | Absorbed in Paper

We’ve featured Ola before on the blog being a tiny bit obsessed with their stunning patterns and quality stationery however this time we’re sharing something from their Christmas shop;  the origami decoration kit. Whilst fantastic for Christmas they are quite frankly decorations we’ll probably display all year – especially as their homemade!

There are two kits to choose from but the one we selected was the Milano collection (top right) which was designed in collaboration with renowned origami artist Coco Sato.

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Using their signature patterned papers designed and Made In England you can make eight contemporary decorations.

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Learning a new skill takes time and concentration. With this in mind they are great for this time of year with long dark evenings when you just need to stop and quieten your mind and become absorbed in something that will take you away from day to day life.  We would recommend these for yourself or actually as a Christmas present as people may have the time to dedicate this time to a project over the holidays. We tackled it as a team of two and this definitely added to the enjoyment and sense of teamwork as we worked our way through the instructions.

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The kit comprises of 48 x small patterned squares, 12 x large patterned squares and satin ribbon and is presented in a hand-finished box with the instructions of how to make them all.

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Being novices at Origami it was exciting to undertake a new project but we have to be honest and say there were a few steps where we were completely foxed. Frustrating and funny at the same time those first ‘prototypes’ were definitely a challenge. However, the cheat sheet bit is that you get access to their exclusive step-by-step videos which show you how to do them and this always saved us when we had reached a dead end. A clever idea and great to have as a back up if you need it.

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We could see how we improved in our accuracy as the gaps got tighter and the decorations got more crisp. It was rewarding, fun and a great way of being creative with some guidance. We’d definitely recommend these as a beautiful present for someone with a love of paper to create their own bespoke decorations made by hand with paper made in England. What’s not to love?

Shop the Ola Studio Christmas Shop or follow on Instagram or Twitter for a shot of pattern and creativity.

For transparency we were sent the origami decorations as a challenge to make them as part of this feature! 

To the Moon & Back | Koko Kids

 

 

Decorating a childs room can be really difficult as they’re well, growing! You don’t want to make anything too permanent, knowing in the back of your mind, that their tastes and interests are changing all the time…

 

 

 

Our son recently turned 5 and it was time he had his own space (mainly so he could live alongside his enormous lego collection) so as part of our house build we turned our small kitchen (which was being relocated to the back of the house) into his own bedroom. Ripping out the kitchen, relocating the plumbing, the gas mains, the electrics etc was messy work but after plastering and painting we were left with a white box.

Eager to install some character and interest into the room we used accents of bold colours such as Mister David and Deep Space Blue from Little Greene. In our minds we had a theme of planets and space and this idea was fully embraced when we came across these moveable Moon & Stars fabric wall stickers from Koko Kids.

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The fabric wall stickers arrive in a tube so are fully protected which is great

If you haven’t heard of Brighton-based Koko Kids then we’d recommend taking a look at their website. Shortlisted for a Smallish Design Award this year their work is a fantastic combination of fun, imagination and quality. Their stylish designs are for kids but they use vintage or graphical elements which means parents can appreciate the designs too and they have more longevity as the children grow.

For the Moon & Stars sticker it comes in two options: one with white stars for dark walls (the one featured here) or grey stars for white walls.

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To apply you just peel a little of the moon off the backing paper, apply to the wall and then stick to the wall as you pull the backing paper away. Incredibly easy for 2 people to ensure a smooth finish but we’re confident you could do this solo too!

We didn’t time it but it took approximately a minute to get the moon onto the wall as it peeled off the backing paper. The moon is quite large which we loved, 55cm in diameter, and comes with 230 little stars in various sizes to surround as you wish. These do take a little longer! You of course don’t have to use them all but we got a little carried away loving how they popped against the Little Greene Deep Space Blue colour and so every star was used very quickly.

The wall sticker arrives on one large square piece of paper meaning its not fiddly to do. The quality of the stickers mean they peel off quickly and they are cut accurately meaning they come straight off without any corners sticking to the backing paper. It was a super easy and satisfying little project!

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How the wall sticker arrives

The stickers can be repositioned and reused as many times as you like so if you’re renting or just wanting to keep your options open then these are great as they’re easy to remove and leave no sticky residue like cheap wall stickers can. They do however leave a massive impact! It immediately changed the feeling of the room!

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We have a cardboard space shuttle model which sits perfectly against the backdrop to add a 3D element to the scene!

The stickers are free from PVC, Vinyl, Phthalates and BPA meaning they don’t have that horrible smell that cheap decals can and they are perfectly safe for a child’s space. The fabric adhesive is non-toxic and biodegradable too so it’s a great quality option for adding personality to a space – whether that be polka dots, floral or pop art! Take a look and currently all orders have 25% off and free UK delivery with the code: BAUBLE.

Lastly we’d also really recommend the blog Koko Kids have which shares creative ideas around balloons, hanging decorations, window coverings, floor finishes etc. If you’re thinking about renovating or styling a playroom or bedroom then we’d recommend checking it out here for inspiration.

Have fun and we’d love to see your projects for injecting personality into a blank canvas!

For transparency we were sent this wall sticker to try out for ourselves and photograph for this feature. 

 

 

Tiny Trees | Big Memories

If you’re on Instagram then we’re pretty sure you will have heard of ‘Bloom & Wild flower delivery’. We love this brand for their quirky take on bringing postable greenery into our homes in the forms of seasonal flowers, wreaths and even, well, Christmas trees! Each of the above arrives in a narrow slim box which easily fits through a standard letterbox.

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How the Christmas trees arrive through your letterbox

First up this year is ‘The Drew’ which arrives with a collapsable pot, moss and ribbon. You can choose what decorations you’d like it to come with for a little extra sparkle – be that baubles, fairy lights, deluxe beauty treats (yes really!), robins or jingle bells.

We couldn’t resist the stunning reflective hues of the mini baubles and fairy lights so this was our combo to get started with for a design-led looking mini tree in our kitchen.

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The Drew with shimmering papers and baubles. It’s Christmas in a box!

Kitchens can be tricky spaces for bringing festive cheer to as there’s the safety issue of adding flammable materials to a kitchen as well as the practicality issue of lots of ornaments and banners precariously taped or balanced. The idea of a mini tree which could sit on the worktop, be easily moved and watered once a week seemed perfect. The fairy lights are battery operated making it a really easy portable tree.

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We had an enamel Orla Kiely pot which seemed ideal for this tiny tree in the kitchen

For our kids room we wanted something fun which they could embellish to really make it their own. We opted for ‘The Jack’ with its colourful string of festive jingle bells and fairy lights which when initially decorated by our three year old looked like this:

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The bells jingle which was an added delight for the boys

And was later embellished with lego to look like this..

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It’s a sturdy little tree which withholds the daily redecoration process from the kids!

The great thing about these mini trees is you can move them around their room to set up different festive scenes (sometimes it is also ceremoniously walked to the playroom with new embellishments added). It becomes a living breathing part of Christmas the kids can enjoy looking after.

You might have clocked our first review of a mini-tree last year (if not you can read it here) and we just wanted to update you that we potted it up last year and it’s been very happy. We’ve added a few of the baubles from last year as a welcome by our front door! Once Christmas is over pot yours up and help the little fella grow so you’ve got a Christmas tree for years to come!

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Last years tree still going strong and adding to the outdoor Christmas decorations this year

If you fancy your own tiny tree or want to surprise a loved one to get them in the festive mood (especially if they’ve only got a small space) then enjoy 10% off your first order by signing up to the Bloom & Wild newsletter (scroll to the bottom of their ‘Bloom & Wild flower delivery’ homepage to sign up).

Or for a daily fix of floral follow them on Twitter, Pinterest or Instagram.

For transparency we were sent these trees by Bloom & Wild for the purposes of photography and to share on the blog as part of our Christmas series. We’re huge fans of the minimal packaging, clever seasonal designs and practicality they bring to the flower delivery market! 

Fluid, Reflective & Informal. How do you want your Christmas to be this year?

Roxwell Press is well known for their beautiful illustrative work and each year release their Christmas Shop but this year they’ve developed some beautiful glass hand-painted baubles which we wanted to share…

 

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With a mix of gold and a pastel palette of white, green and pink – they’re unexpectedly festive without the regimental red, green and white which Christmas seems to have become. The fluid edges of the paint work with the reflective shimmer of the colours and these baubles really have a great design edge for an informal but bright look.

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You can buy the baubles as a set of 4 for £20 and they’re a good idea as a gift or frankly just for yourself! The forth bauble is clear and gold (not featured here) but it looks stunning and you can take a peek here.

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These particular baubles are hand-painted which makes them all slightly different and are about 6cm in diameter which makes them really practical to either hang on the tree or make part of a separate decoration.

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We hope these photographs have got you in the festive mood and we’d love to see photographs of the ornaments you treasure at Christmas. There’s something magical about bringing the Christmas box down from the loft and rediscovering all these beautiful handmade treasures year after year!

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You can currently get FREE DELIVERY on all orders at Roxwell Press so take a look at the Christmas shop here.

Please note we were kindly sent these baubles to photograph and share in this feature.