Entries from December 2012

"Happy christmas 2013" Thank you all for the amazing support this year and for all the likes, comments, shares, email messages and so much more.  It’s been a great year and I look forward to sharing lots more with you in 2013.  In the meantime have an amazing Christmas and a fun New Years celebration.  I’ll be taking a little break and will see you back here in the new year.  Before I go, I wanted to leave you with a few festive crafts and treat ideas that you can try out over the holidays.

"DIY christmas crafts and treats"1. Fun and delicious chocolate mustaches and you can even go a step further and make a white chocolate Santa beard!  2.  Super cute candy snails that will go down a treat for kids and adults.  3.  Pretty DIY glitter acorns that are so festive and easy to make.  4.  A cute little DIY wooden family that you can decorate and adorn as you like.

See you in 2013 ~ nomita xx

mama & baby…

December 20, 2012

"snowman soft toy"This week’s picks for mama & baby… this Christmas let mama stay warm and cosy in this glove and hat set while baby plays with that cute handmade snowman.

"vintage toy wonderland"One of my favourite kids style magazines is Milk.  I love browsing through the pages packed with creative ideas, the latest fashion and decor for kids and so much more.  Only slight problem is that a lot of it is in French but that doesn’t detract from the joy of looking at the pretty pictures.  Today I was browsing their site when this vintage wonderland grabbed me.  What an amazing, nostalgic, creative and quirky wonderland it is.  Milk Magazine gave carte blanche to the creative duo behind two of my absolute favourite vintage shops and asked them to stage the Christmas of their dreams.  I think they’ve staged the Christmas of my dreams too!  Just wonderful… "vintage toys"A lot of the vintage furniture and toys of yesteryear pictured are available from Les Petites Bohemes.  It’s the creative duo behind these stores that created this magical kids wonderland with Simon Wardavoir taking the photos.  I hope you love it as much as I do.  Happy Christmas!

Knitted by hand…

December 18, 2012

"hand knitted baby woollens"

Four years ago on an absolutely freezing December night, my daughter made her entry in to this world.  I can still so clearly remember how bitterly cold it was and it didn’t help that we had to head to the hospital at 2 am!  While I worried about a lot of things that night, the one thing I didn’t have to worry about was keeping the baby warm because the previous week my mother-in-law had presented me with a bagful of hand-knitted woolies.  I had beautiful cardigans, sweaters, hats and booties in a range of colours and besides feeling prepared for the cold, I couldn’t think of anything nicer to put my newborn in.

Fast forward 4 years and my mother-in-law still makes the most delightful knits for my daughter every winter.  I think every child deserves some hand-knitted clothes and that’s why I wanted to share these by Bieq as they are some of the nicest hand knits I’ve come across.  Bieq is a Dutch brand that sells only hand knitted clothes and accessories made from pure merino wool.  They specialise in baby hats but also make other clothing items for babies.  The colours are lovely and bold and the styles are nostalgic and classic.  I have touched and seen these clothes up close and they really don’t disappoint.  You’ll find this lovely range at Line + Liv.

"japanese origami paper"When I was a kid I remember being obsessed with origami.  It wasn’t just the beautiful art of folding paper that fascinated me but also the paper itself.  The detailed Japanese prints and bright, vivid colours, the smooth feel of the paper and the soft sheen all really grabbed me.  I remember using my origami sets to painstakingly cover my notebooks, pencil cases and anything else that I could manage.  And I always kept a secret stash of this paper hidden away in a drawer just in case… I’m sure I never had an origami paper emergency but I was always prepared!  So when I discovered Adeline Klam and her beautiful store it took me back to my ‘origami days’ and I was smitten.

"origami craft book"Adeline Klam’s boutique is brimming with origami sets, Japanese fabrics, origami ornaments and much more.  She also uses the beautiful paper to make lamps, tissue boxes, photo albums and other little things for the home.  But if you’re more of a DIY’er, Adeline has put together craft books on ideas of how to use this paper.  There’s of course an origami book but there’s also a super cute book on kokeshi dolls and how to turn these wonderful little ladies in to all manner of everyday objects from cushions to paper garlands.  Discovering this store has really re-kindled my origami love and I can’t wait to indulge in this craft with my daughter who is a bit young at the moment but soon, very soon I shall introduce her to to this wonderful and beautiful paper craft. 

One of the best parts of gift giving for me it the wrapping of the gift.  I love using plain gift wrapping paper like a solid colour or something with a tiny repeat pattern but all in one colour.  And then I embellish it with whatever I can find… string, ribbon, washi tape, stickers, stamps or even a combination of a couple of these.  Last and most importantly comes the gift tag which just adds that finishing touch to a gift.  Sometimes I make my own but most often I turn to the free gift tags that you can print, especially since so many of them are just gorgeous.  I’ve been on the hunt for some and these are a few of my favourtie free printable gift tags for this year:

"free christmas gift tags to print"

Love the grey-blue/pink colour combo and the delicate pattern of the tags at the top while the red and white ones are simple but still so stylish and you can even customise with your own special message if you want to.  Head here for the blue/pink gift tags and here for the red and white tags.

"free christmas gift tags"

These deer and bear tags are both cute and quirky and come in lovely colours.  I’m so loving the long ones with the standing deer and the bear.  Here’s where you’ll find these free holiday tags to download.

"pretty christmas gift tags free"

These pretty patterned gift tags are so fresh and summery, perfect if you’re celebrating Christmas in a hot and sunny place like Australia or Argentina.  But I’m quite tempted to use them in freezing London too just to add that splash of sunshine to my gifts.  You’ll find these free patterned tags at Eat Drink Chic.

"free reindeer christmas gift tags"

For something a bit more traditional and wintery, I love these simple and sweet tags.  The over-sized lettering and the tiny tree, snowflake and reindeer print looks so lovely.  You can print these free gift tags at Love vs. Design.

"free christmas wrapping paper"

These two are actually free printable gift wrap but you could easily customise them in to gift tags by printing and sticking on card.  The snowman one is so cute and would look great on kids gifts while the tree and gift design is chic and modern and would add a stylish touch to any gift.  You’ll find both these to print over at Bloesem.

"free christmas gift tags to print"

Last, I really like these bold single coloured tags with sweet and happy messages on them.  I love the way they’ve paired them with matching coloured wrapping paper which I think makes them even more striking.  But if you prefer, you could get contrasting gift wrap too.  You’ll find these downloads over at Hey Look.

These are my current favourites and I know I’ll be using a few of these designs on my gifts.  If you want more free gift tags then you can check out my selections from previous years which you’ll find here, here and here.

"matching gifts for mum and baby"

This week’s picks for mama & baby… some more Christmas gift ideas but this time in blue.  I love blue and as there are so many different shades of the colour there’s something for everyone.  One of the reasons I picked this colour today is because I think blue works for girls just as well as for boys:

1.  Bookhou stones tea towel for mama from Vuela Boutique.

2.  Bieq hand knitted baby dress from Line +Liv.

3.  Sage & sandalwood hand cream for mama from Anthropologie.

4.  Leather baby shoes by Ajalor.

5.  Tube toy train for baby from e-side.

6.  Japanese linen illustrated table runner for mama from Upon a fold (Update Jul 2014 – this shop has closed down sadly).

7.  Sea blue canvas laptop case for mama by Baggu.

8.  Printed velvet peacock pillows for mama by Michelle Varian.

9.  100% wool handwoven school bag for baby by Bobo Choses.

10.  Handmade crochet lottie cat doll by Alessandra Taccia.

11.  Organic contrast toe and heel tights for baby by Buisjes & Beugels.

12.  Cloud blue and cream wooden necklace for mama by Vera Viridis.

Unlike me, I suspect most of you are organised and have finished your Christmas shopping {I haven’t even started!} so this will be the last gift list of the year.  But in case you’re still looking for ideas, you can check out my all my other Christmas gift guides too.

"French toys for kids"

Today’s Christmas gift guide is a selection by French Blossom, my sponsors.  French Blossom is a kids store started by husband and wife team Nicholas and Meriem.  Even though they don’t have kids (yet), having met and lived in Paris for many years, Nicholas and Meriem were ‘inspired by the exquisite elegance and style devoted to children’s clothing, toys and decoration in France’.  As Nicholas explains, ‘the idea behind French Blossom is to – ‘Celebrate French Fashion for Children,’ and to exclusively showcase chic and stylish independent French children’s designers’.  So I thought this Christmas, it would be fun to ask them to choose their favourite gift ideas from their store and I also wanted to find out a bit more about how they spend their Christmas.  Here’s what they said:

Let’s talk Christmas! What do you love most about it?

Family time! Its great to all gather together, have fun and relax.

What’s a typical Christmas day for you?

We wake up and see if Father Christmas has been kind to us 🙂 ! We all then sit in the living room in front of the fire and Christmas tree, opening the presents as the lovely smells of the Christmas dinner wafts in from the kitchen.  After lunch we wrap up nice and warm and go for a walk to watch the annual swim in the sea.  There are hundreds of brave people, many dressed up in fancy dress costumes who swim in the freezing water.  Then there is a nice warm drink for everyone.  We haven’t done this swim yet but maybe this year!

Is your Christmas more French or more English?

Our Christmas is British; Meriem and I always go back to the UK for Christmas.  The only thing French is the wine on the table.

Anything you dislike about Christmas?

I don’t like when I have finished opening the last present, finished the wonderful turkey dinner or saying goodbye to relatives who have come over for the day

Lastly, your top 10 Christmas gifts for kids this year?

1. Circus themed baby dinner set by Mimi’Lou

2. Soft toy characters by My name is simone

3. Vintage 3D story box by Tiphaine Mangan

4.  Little duck on wheels by Trousselier

5.  Dreamy kids mouse mobile by Rose Miniscule

6.  Pirate and treasure puzzle by Janod

7.  Colourful decorative ball lights by La case de cousin paul

8.  Children’s accordean by Vilac

9.  Retro classic blue pedal car by Baghera

10.  Story express circus by Janod

Thank you Nicholas and Meriem for sharing your Christmas traditions and gift ideas with us and I’m really curious to find out if Nicholas will do that swim this year!  You’ll find all these toys and more over at French Blossom and don’t forget, my readers can still get 10% off anything that’s not on offer by using the codes EBABEES. 

A few accessories…

December 11, 2012

"pretty pink accesories for girls"

I think accessories on big girls and little girls look great but I don’t do nearly enough accessorising.  I quite simply forget!  I really want to change this habit and start adding that extra touch to every outfit for my daughter and me.  I love the idea of going for muted coloured clothes and then adding hints of bold and bright colour through the accessories.  I came across that neon and gold necklace today which I loved and that’s what reminded me of the need for accessories in my life!  So I first went looking for some for my daughter and these are 4 that I loved:

1.  Neon and gold necklace by Lieschen Mueller… 2.  Hand-knitted hooded scarf by Ketiketa… 3.  Ilva baby socks with stripe detail by April Showers… 4. Elephant hair ties by Melissa Abram.

"princess cake London"

Today is my daughter Anya’s 4th birthday… happy, happy birthday Anya!  We had her first proper birthday party on the weekend.  So far, we’ve only had a little celebration at home but I think 4 is the age where they really start to appreciate a party with their little friends.  She asked for a pink party and a purple princess cake and that’s what she got.  I thought I would share some pictures of her party and also take this opportunity to introduce my newest sponsor Hugo & Adele which is a super pretty party shop.

"girls pink party ideas"

When I started looking for her party decorations, I soon began to despair as all I could find was shiny plastic things which I am really not keen on.  And then by chance I stumbled upon Hugo & Adele and it was love at first sight.  Hugo & Adele are a small shop selling the prettiest party wares and they had nearly all the stuff I was looking for.  So I ordered all the paper plates, paper cups, paper straws, party bags, bunting and more for the party from there.  When the goodies arrived wrapped up in soft pink tissue, I was delighted as they looked even better in person than in pictures.  I’m so happy they’ve since become a sponsor as I really love their store and would wholeheartedly recommend them because not only is their stuff lovely but they were also very efficient and pleasant to deal with.

"pink party table decor ideas"

For the kid’s table I bought a white paper table cloth and thought it would be fun to give each child a set of crayons so they could draw while they waited for their food.  This worked really well as not only did they have fun but it kept them occupied {read: out of trouble!} while the food was being served.  I kept the decorations simple on the table as I felt the cups, plates and straws looked lovely and didn’t need much embellishment.  I did however make some washi tape bunting which I hung all around the table.

"kids party food ideas"

I served most of the food in pink and white cupcake holders for the kids but made disposable platters for the adults, using cardboard and pink patterned tissue paper.  The party food was simple and of course very, very kid friendly!

"pink polka dots party bags"

While the whole party theme was pink and white, I used a combination of polka dots, stripes and solids.  I also used a variety of pink shades ranging from pale pink to bright.  I loved these spotty party bags and thought it would be fun to stick those cute pencils on the front.  The party bags turned out to be a bit of a kid magnet so it was a little difficult convincing the kids to wait till the end to get one!

"pink paper party cups"

Anya really enjoyed her pink party and I loved putting it together for her.  I couldn’t have done it without the help of my husband and very good friend Angus.  I’d also like to say a big thank you to our friend Antoine Aoun for the stunning photography, Mirna Cakes for the striking cake and finally to Hugo & Adele for the beautiful paper party wares and decorations.

UPDATE NOV 2015: Unfortunately Hugo & Adele are no longer operating. But if you want some fab party decorations similar to these, you’ll find them at pretty little party shop

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