Set 292016
 

Wow, with so many great designers out there at the moment I’m glad I’m not picking a wedding dress, I would just be so spoilt for choice. And this is another great example, the Ceremony Collection from Anna Campbell. An Australian designer whose dresses are ethically and expertly constructed in Melbourne.

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Exquisite detailing is the thread that runs through all collections, from sparkling embellishments, where each bead and sequin is carefully sewn by hand, to laser-cut French laces and the most delicate of trimmings, each are visible in all Anna Campbell dresses and accessories alike.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Set 282016
 

I wish I had the opportunity to meet Matteo Renzi, I’ve read so many nice articles about him in the Observer, I think it’s safe to say the Guardian is IN LOVE with him. When he bulldozed his way to leader of the governing PD party they described him as relaxed and tieless in his acquasparta trainers. The youngest president of Italy ever was about to turn the country around.

I’m sure that he’s a much better choice than Burlusconi but he somehow just constantly grates on my nerves. He talks the talk and boasts about how Italy is improving and unemployment is going down but it just doesn’t seem like that from where I’m stood (in Sardinia).

When I moved to Sardinia in 2009 with my Sardinian husband, I felt like I’d moved backwards in time. Apart from everything being more complicated in a foreign language, most things are just unnecessarily complicated and long winded, still, I was optomistic things would improve and when our children grew up there would be opportunities for them.Prime auto sulla strada Sassari-Olbia

It’s now 2016 and these are the changes that I’ve seen: Carrefour and Decathalon opened, a new 4 lane road between Olbia and Sassari is nearly finished, part of the Sassari – Cagliari road is being rebuilt, Some of the hospital buildings have been refurbished in Sassari (unfortunately not the one I gave birth in).

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Outside of the main towns there’s not a lot to shout about. Before moving to Sardinia I travelled around India and can see more similarities between these two places than other European countries. It doesn’t seem like a developed country. It’s chaotic, unorganised and ill planned. Developments are left half finished all over the cities, buildings abandoned that should be demolished. A shambles everywhere. To reach my house you have to take a very bumpy and rocky unmade road for more than 1 mile. It’s not a private road, the council needs to surface it but they say every year they have no money because councils have been capped (thanks to limits set by Germany the Mayor said). Every summer we contend with water being turned off by Abanoa (the regional water company who like to hold the residents at ransom – obviously not those on the Costa Smeralda). Watchdogs don’t exist. Most roads need resurfacing, the suspension on my car is completely knackered but there’s no point fixing it. Affordable broadband for people in the countryside doesn’t exist either but it easily could via radio or satellite.

But really, these issues bare little importance to the fact that there are no jobs. So much of the economy in Sardinia relies on tourism yet the season lasts between 4 and 5 months in most places, Unusual for a place which boast a great climate for much more of the year. And what about the other 8 months of the year? Many head abroad or to the mountains for a winter season. This is fine if you’re happy to move around but for for many families it means children not seeing 1 or both parents throughout the summer and potentially the winter too. Makes living in Sardinia full time pretty tough. Average national wages are amongst the lowest in Sardinia and the unemployment rate sits at double the rate of that in Italy.

Renzi has recently pledged 2.6 billion euros, but really, it doesn’t seem like he’s adressing any the real issues in Sardinia, building a few  4 lane roads probably makes his trips here easier but it does little to effect the day to day lives of normal Sardinians.

Set 272016
 

Congratulations on your new arrival!

What better way to spread the news than to throw a wonderful party or send all your friends and family special keepsake favours to mark the event. These ideas also make for great baby shower or Baptism or Christening favours.

These favours are all complete with a choice of dragees and have been lovingly packaged and decorated by out team in Tuscany. All you need to add are favour tags to complete them with your own personal message.

Alternatively if you wanted to make your own personalised favours why not visit our extensive diy department and pick from some our cute favour bags and boxes?

silver butterfly displayed on a perspex favour box filled with a choice of dragees

Elegant perspex favour box filled with a choice of dragees and decorated with a pretty silver butterfly.

crystal dummy presented on an elegant pink favour pouch filled with a choice of dragees

Stunning crystal dummy presented on a traditional pink favour pouch filled with a choice of dragees.

An odorable buiscuit shaped magnet featuring baby footprints sat on a favour rosette pouch filled with dragees

An odorable buiscuit shaped magnet featuring baby footprints sat on a favour rosette pouch filled with dragees

Give your guests a cute wooden bookmark to mark the arrival of you baby girl. Presented on a favour box filled with a choice of dragees

Give your guests a cute wooden bookmark to mark the arrival of you baby girl. Presented on a favour box filled with a choice of dragees

Sophisticated and elegant crystal butterfly presented on a perspex favour box filled with a choice of dragees.

Sophisticated and elegant crystal butterfly presented on a perspex favour box filled with a choice of dragees.

Set 262016
 

My 4 year old daughter just adores these fairies and ballerinas, she loves playing with her little figurines especially in her dollshouse.

Small resin fairy with wings comes in assorted colours, pretty diy favour

Small resin fairy with wings comes in assorted colours, pretty diy favour

These cute figurines look great on favour boxes, perspex favour boxes are great because children can see their sweet treat straight away! See below how the ballerina figurine sits neatly on the favour box decorated with matching ribbon.

Elegant porcelain ballerina figurine

Elegant porcelain ballerina figurine

These cute figurines would also make a great addition to a party bag if you’re looking for a special keepsake to give to your child’s friends.

Porcelain ballerina figurine displayed on a favour box filled with a choice of dragees.

Porcelain ballerina figurine displayed on a favour box filled with a choice of dragees.

Large resin fairy with wings, a wonderful diy favour

Large resin fairy with wings, a wonderful diy favour

Set 252016
 

I have 2 table extenders from my already long dining table so I have decided to paint them with black board paint and draw some great typographic posters on them with quotes or lyrics that I really love. They’ll be hung in the kitchen in front of the dining table. I have bought chalkboard pens so I get nice crisp lines as opposed to real chalk.

The only problem is, there are so many quotes and lyrics that I love, I’m having a pretty tough time deciding.

There are some lyrics that are really personal to me which would be fine I guess, if I lived alone. But, they mean nothing to my husband or children. So then I started to think about lyrics that I love which would be more appropriate for my family. Stand by Me: Ben E King was the first that came to mind. As I have 2 boards, I need 1 long quote or two quotes that go really well together.

ben e king stand by me ben e king stand by me

So I think these two sections of lyrics would be great together. However, after searching for inspiration, I’m drawn to some beautiful quotes by Roald Dahl which I think are maybe more appropriate for my children. I think it’s important to grow up around great words.  I know they’ll grow up reading his stories.

0b170171d08e72b5ed37dba7a8d104223397e2b186cfdfdba685afa071aa0a8aff95ac2f861e59805befc5b37cb01d8bAnd then these are some more great quotes particularly suitable for children, from Alice in Wonderlandalice in wonderland bonkers quote and about being curious because it sums up my children’s attitudes, I hope they’re always adventurous.a79bedee91939e8d050c48c76cc37d9f

I like this quote because  from a Midsummer Night’s dream, my daughter has always been quite petite and has been struggling with her speech and language, and so, even if she doesn’t understand these words yet, it reminds me that she’s strong.b3fa0ed9a2994b8cba814764a68f87cf

I think I need more boards!!!

 

Set 242016
 

Finding a ladybird is considered to be lucky and therefore ladybirds make popular favours as they are also thought to bring you good luck. Be it a small object, figurine or keyring. Ladybird favours take a number of forms and are suitable for most ocassions. They are commonly used as communion, baptism or graduation favours.

Keyrings come in silver, cream and blue and are easy to attach to a favour bag or place on a favour box. If you want to create a bigger centre piece display with your favours then a favour cake is a great idea. I have selected the version with a neutral white base but red, green, pink, lilac and yellow are also available depending on the colour theme of your event.

enamel red ladybird favour cake italian bomboniere

red enamal painted silver ladybird object decorating a 22 slice favour cake filled with dragees.

enamel red ladybird favour cake italian bomboniere

Topped with a ladybird decorated photo frame

cream rhinestone studded ladybird keyring favour cake

cream rhinestone studded ladybird keyring favour cake

red ladybird keyrings encrusted with rhinestones on a 22 slice favour cake

red ladybird keyrings encrusted with rhinestones on a 22 slice favour cake

Set 232016
 
italian wedding favour bomboniere

50% off , elegant favour bag decorate with a silver and pink flower decoration.

italian wedding favour bomboniere

50% off this elegant perspex favour box decorated with flowers and filled with luxury chocolate coated almonds.

italian wedding favour bomboniere

50% off this cute and simple pink favour bag decorated with a flower embellishment and filled with a choice of dragees.

italian wedding favour bomboniere

50% off this pink rose bud displayed on an elegant and pretty favour pouch filled with a choice of dragees.

Set 222016
 

Lets just step back in time, just a little bit. To two years ago when after being together for over 8 years they finally said “I do” They opted for a private ceremony at their estate in the south of France which centered around their children. (they had written the vows for their parents and drawn designs all over Angelina’s veil).

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Married in a satin Atelier Versace gown, it was simple and sophisticated. So what went wrong? Where do all the allegations of infedelity, drinking and pot smoking come from. Aren’t they Hollywood’s golden couple?angelina-jolie-and-brad-pitt_

Could it be true that karma is coming back round and biting Angelina on the butt! She always said they never went behind Jen’s back when they met and fell in love on the Mr and Mrs Smith set but now rumours are rife that Pitt and his co star Marion Cotillard have done it again although both have fiercely denied the allegations.tumblr_nbc95oi9u41ry5ul7o1_500

The truth will come out in time but hopefully for the children’s sake it all ends peacefully.slider_pitt_jolie

 

 

 

Set 212016
 

We absolutely love the Birds of Paradise collection from Limor Rosen (another Israeli designer) based in Tel Aviv. The collection has a distinct 70’s vibe to it, very bohemian with flowing laces and soft feminine cuts, It’s an extremely romantic collection with lots of delicate beading and elegant backs

“Inspired by the soft detailed patterns and their outstanding elongated feathers, ‘Birds Of Paradise’ collection blends this flowing tenderness with nature’s incredible geometric patterns. This collection incorporates soft, slender silk tulles with polished and fine beaded lace to create feminine, romantic silhouettes.

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Set 202016
 

A favour cake is a great addition to any party from a birthday to a Baptism to a wedding. They make a great centre piece display and of course it’s a wonderful way to thank your guests for coming.

There are a few different ways you can make a favour cake;

With favour bags on a polystyrene tiered base. You could rent one or buy pre cut polystyrene and make your own.

shabby chic favour cake

This is an example of a finished favour cake made with favour bags, it contains 23 favour bags, this is a rough guide as bags vary in size.

Favour cake slices boxes on a round base which can also be tiered.

pink favour cake, cake slice boxes

This pink favour cake is created with 38 cake shaped favour boxes and is only £15.12, it comes in a range of colours.

A favour pyramid created with perspex favour boxes. Although other kinds of favour boxes can be used perspex are the sturdiest and best for this.

Once you’ve decided on your base, all that’s left is to decide on is the decoration and embellishments you’d like to use. You can find a great selection in our DIY department. And finally you need to decide on a sweet treat to pop inside. This is a very personal choice and lots of people decide on a candy that they themselves love. However, more traditionaly, sugared almonds were used, if you think these are slightly old fashioned you could opt for a tasty chocolate coated almond, these come in a huge range of flavours, from watermelon to ricotta and pear!

perspex favour pyramid

DIY favour pyramid created with 32 perspex 5x5x5cm boxes