Archive | May, 2016

The Friday Find: Look sharp!

27 May

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Why have a small, boring pencil sharpener when you can have one shaped like a robot?!

Pop your pencil into this friendly fella’s mouth, turn the handle on his back, and he’ll happily chomp away, storing the shavings in his tummy to be emptied later.

Not only does he do a great job, but he looks amazing too. And the best bit? He’s just £3 (yep, three quid!) from Tiger Stores (www.tiger-stores.co.uk), so I recommend you pop one in your basket… sharpish!

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The Friday Find: something fishy

20 May

I spot so many amazing things on my window shopping expeditions and in my day job is as a lifestyle journalist, that I’ve decided to start sharing them with you regularly. From great gifts to beautiful bits for your home, I’ll post up my finds on Fridays, so you can think about treating yourself at the weekend…

Small £18 and Large £33 retro fish vases The Contemporary Home

Today’s ‘Friday Find’ are these fun retro-style fish vases from The Contemporary Home (www.tch.net). Based on original ‘gurgling fish jugs’ from the late 1950s, they’re almost too pretty to put flowers in.

The large one is 30cm tall and 20cm wide and costs £33; and the small one is 24cm tall, 17cm wide and costs £18.

If you’re feeling really flush, you could ahem, splash out on a pair!

The Friday Find: Drop-down-gorgeous origami shades

13 May

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Oh wow, how lovely are these lampshades? Combining two of my favourite things – origami and bright colours – they’d look amazing either on their own in a bedroom, or in a row along a hallway.

WildWood_Lifestyle_SS16_LampshadeOrange_1_HIBy stylish interiors brand Wild & Wolf, and made of hand-folded paper, you can choose from four retro hues: Alena (English mustard) £34.95, Zodiac (goldfish orange) £44.95, Caspian (Swedish green) or Nuvola (French blue) both £39.95.

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They come folded flat in a colour co-ordinated box, so would also make a great gift:

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Get yours at Redcandy.co.uk before they sell out!

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The Friday Find: Throws of passion

6 May

I spot so many amazing things on my window shopping expeditions and in my day job is as a lifestyle journalist, that I’ve decided to start sharing them with you regularly. From great gifts to beautiful bits for your home, I’ll post up my finds on Fridays, so you can think about treating yourself at the weekend…

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Last week saw the sad news that the department store BHS (www.bhs.co.uk) is in administration and likely to vanish from our high streets forever. The homeware and lighting departments have some great stuff, and it’ll be a shame to see it go.

So, this week’s first ever Friday Find has to be from BHS. I popped in there at the weekend to check out the discount event currently taking place… and fell in love with this ‘Purple multi coloured woven throw’.

The original price was £30, but it’s now been reduced to £24, and the pix don’t really do it justice – the zingy colours and chunky knit wool make it look a zillion times more expensive:

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It’s a decent 157cm x 152cm and would look great in any room in the house – or even outside to keep you snug while enjoying a cheeky evening drink or two in the garden.

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The store that’ll change your life (or at least, your shopping habits)

3 May

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In case you missed it, last week was ‘National Stationery Week’ (yes, I know, there’s a ‘week’ for everything these days). Having been a stationery geek ever since I first collected novelty shaped erasers at school, I decided this was the perfect excuse to treat myself to a few extra office essentials. Ahem, well, if you can count beautiful gold notebooks, stylish pens, quirky sticky notes and glass mason-type jars for making my pencils look pretty as ‘essential’..!

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And my shopping destination of choice for these goodies? Not Paperchase or some trendy stationers, but HEMA, an amazing shop stuffed with everything from stationery and craft materials to kitchenware and food, makeup and jewellery. Originating in the Netherlands (where HEMA is a household name), it’s a mini department store with a difference – everything they sell is designed at their Dutch headquarters and is well-made, simple, good-looking… and great value. Think the marketplace section at IKEA, crossed with the jaw-droppingly-low prices of Tiger Stores.

HEMA stationery display (orange)

The shelves of my local store in Bromley (above) are groaning with gorgeous, quirky and bargainous bits that you won’t find anywhere else. On my last visit, I had a gift voucher to spend, and quite frankly, it’s a dangerous place to let someone like me loose. The jars pictured at the top? They were just £2 and £3 each; while the pens and sticky arrow notes below them cost 75p each; and the notebooks were £2 (spotty) and £3 (faux leather cover).

It’s also a brilliant place to shop for presents, and my new go-to destination for giftwrapping supplies. Just check out these shelves:

UntitledFor example, this amazing geometric wrapping paper below was just £1.50 a roll; the handy gifting stickers £1.50 a pack; the fun mini bunting £2 (which would look great wrapped around plain giftwrap or brown parcel paper); and the matching washi tape £2.50:

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The cards are fab too, and very reasonably priced at between £1 and £2.50. Check out these lovely modern designs:

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There are five HEMA stores in the UK so far (in London, Kingston, Birmingham, Stansted Airport and Bromley), but if there isn’t one near you, don’t fret – you can buy everything online at  http://www.hemashop.com/gb/ (delivery is £4 to the UK).

What are you waiting for? Load your baskets now!

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