After a long days work it’s easy for me to pop on the tv for Edith after I’ve picked her up from nursery. Usually she’s quite tired as she has played her little heart out all day. I’m hurrying to get dinner on so I can start to get her ready for bed. I’m totally cool with having her watch some Curious George for a little bit, but I would actually like to eliminate the tv all together and keep it for special occasions or a movie with the parents. What was I going to have her do while I got on with things, I hadn’t come up with a great plan until I came across The Art Pantry.
The Art Pantry is a design studio specialising in children’s creative play spaces. Founded by Megan Schiller, designer and educator, their mission is to encourage children’s creative play and learning through inspired design. Megan believes that every kid should have their own creative space, even if it’s just a box they can pull off the shelve with art supplies in it. She has helped thousands of families create and set up a space for their kids to expand their imaginations through art.
Megan has prepared a step-by-step guide called The New Playroom on how you can create an art space for your child. You can go to her website and purchase and download a copy for yourself.
Here are three easy steps to get you started:
1. Set up a dedicated creative space, no matter the size (think quality over quantity) and stock it with quality, age-appropriate materials.
2. Help your child get to know the materials through experimentation and exploration.
3. Guide your child toward an empowered and independent use of the space, while keeping it fresh and organized (most of the time!).
She also challenges us mothers to a 30-day art challenge. She has prepared a guide called Invitations to Create with 30 art ideas to prepare for your child. They are super simple, easy to set up and allows your child to experiment with new art materials. I was really impressed by her ideas and plan on trying this out with Edith. You can purchase and download the guide from her website as well.
The Art Pantry is the perfect solution to no more tv!!!!!
Check out The Art Pantry here:
A great friend of mine, Vanessa, asked if she could come round and take photos of Edith and I so she could build her portfolio, of course I said Yes! Edith and I hadn’t had any recent photos taken and I was really excited to get some new prints to hang around the house. I’m not 100% comfortable in front of the camera mainly because I do not have a model face. I’m not sure which direction to look or how to tilt my head to get the best out of my profile. I need to learn, than maybe I could look my best in every photo. I have two close friends that both have been models and standing next to them in a photo is well a bit tragic as they know how to take an amazing photo.
I like natural photos, posed photos are not for me as I want the photographer to catch me or my family in a natural setting doing very natural things. Especially, kids. Edith is a natural in front of the camera, she’s natural in front of the camera because she is just being herself. Yes I understand that the camera does love some more than others and I know Edith is one of these people. I hope she never loses her comfort in front of the camera.
Vanessa came to our house and literally was only with us for 20 minutes and during those 20 minutes took the most beautiful photos of Edith and I. She asked us to talk with each other, play around a bit and of course give each other some cute cuddles and kisses. Luckily, the natural light was quite spectacular during this time.
I wanted to share these photos with you as I am so happy with the way they turned out. If you are in need of some family photos or pregnancy photo or kid photos, please do get in touch with my friend, she is so good at capturing you in your home and as she is a mama as well, she is so good with the kids.
Here’s her website: www.vanessavalentinephotography.com
(from left to right) Triangle Stand// Serving Bowl// Kinfolk// Gold Cutlery// Knit Jumper// Trainers// Serving Plate// Basket Bowl// Candles// Mugs // Measuring Spoons
This week I will be celebrating Thanksgiving with the rest of the Americans worldwide. My husband and I are having our traditional Thanksgiving feast this year, with me being the only American present. Our Thanksgiving dinners have turned into a intercontinental celebration of thankfulness. It is truly about thankfulness for me. I love gathering our closest friends around to eat and laugh together. I look around the room each year and thank God for blessing me with good people, because I wouldn’t be where I am today without them.
I’ve been working my bum off lately and this week has been tougher than some but I still have to be thankful for have the opportunity to build my own business and my own brand. It’s easy to forget what really matters at times as we get so caught up in our day to day lives, sometimes it’s healthy to take a step back, take a deep breath and say thank you. Two simple words, thank you.
So to all of you out there reading this, thank you for reading, thank you to my friends, my family, my daughter and my husband. With my deepest gratitude, thank you.
As you might of noticed I have been a bit silent over the last week, well that’s because I have been running around like a chicken with my head cut off. I’ve been working on my own collection and had been preparing for Sense Organic’s AW 15/16 photoshoot. I spent my weekend preparing a winter wonderland for the models to gallantly run circles around the photographer. I think they did exactly that. I have to admit I’m still tired.
But let’s move on to new things. Before you know it 2015 will be coming to an end and into 2016 we will go. Keeping this in mind, there is one thing you should start thinking about and that is buying your very cool 2016 calendar! Dear 2016, may you keep on smiling into our faces and keep on shining magical rainbows over our heads! jäll & tofta, from Berlin bring you 2 new calendars, Cloud and Face by their favourite Berlin based illustrator Nina Eggemann. Designed to bring you daily happiness her modo for these calendars are, Dear 2016, may you keep on smiling into our faces and keep on shining magical rainbows over our heads!
While shopping for your Cloud or Face calendar, check out jäll & tofta’s selection of lovely interiors, mobiles and prints. I’m particularly in love with the Mr. Moustache Mobile. I bought one for Edith’s room when she was a baby and I think she needs the gold one now! With Christmas around the corner, you are sure to find some unique gifts here!
These last couple of day are an ode to knitwear! I am currently and usually obsessed with knits. I’ve longed for a few beautifully made jumpers to wear over and over again. I’m working on it! As I was browsing for inspirational knits, I came across Loopy Mango. A few things I want to point out about Loopy Mango, one, the name is killer and two, their knits are gorgeous!!!!
Loopy Mango was founded in New York City in 2004 by Koren born Waejong Kim and Russian born Anna Pulvermakher. Wading and Anna met while taking a class at the Fashion Institute of Technology. Both wanting to leave their corporate jobs behind and pursue jobs in the art field they decided knitwear was the way forward.
Loopy Mango is a knitwear and DIY brand that uses Big Loop, the thickest yarn available on the market today. Being described as the most beautiful yarn in the world, they produce it at their mill in Key Largo, FL with 100% domestic merino wool. Every ball of yarn is hand crafted by their artisans. Beginner DIY kits are available for you to purchase so you can have a go at making your own luxury knit or home accessory.
Check out their gorgeous selection here. I can’t wait to have a go!
(starting from the left and working down and across)
Babaa Knitwear//Her New Tribe//Ohhio//Loopy Mango//Second Street//Decorialab//Fashion Gone Rouge
It’s been a week or so since I’ve posted anything and that’s because I have been a very busy cookie. You probably don’t know, but I am in the middle of designing my very first GIRLSTALKOBOYS kidswear collection! I have wanted to design my own collection for many many years now, but didn’t have the self-confidence to see if through. I’m over the self-doubt and have to make this brand happen. The collection will be out in AW 16/17 for you to purchase and starting in January I’ll start showing it to buyers. I’m not going to lie I am very nervous about showing it come buying season, not because I don’t love it, because I do!!!! I truly believe in this collection. I just want everyone else to love it and want it in their shop.
It’s definitely been a journey, I still don’t have a clue what I’m doing, but I know I’ll figure it out along the way. I learn by doing and that is exactly what I am doing, a lot of doing. I studied fashion design and product development and I’ve worked in womenswear and children’s wear for ages, so in theory you would think I should know what I’m are doing or know how it’s all suppose to work, but let me tell you, that is not the case. Once you pursue it in real life, everything goes haywire. But hey, I like a challenge and boy I am getting one!
I have to realise that all the greats had to start somewhere and this is my somewhere. So I will keep working as hard as I can to get this collection out and get people to buy it and enjoy it!!!!
In the meantime, I have been inspired by big, thick, chunky knits! I took a knitting class and thought while I was on maternity leave I would knit the world a scarf or booties or something like that, but that did not happen! I’m so out of practice. I respect and admire those who are great at knitting or designing beautiful wearable knits or non wearable knits too. As today turned a bit on the chilly side and the wind shuffles the leaves around, the only I can think appropriate is knits. Here are some beautiful knits that make my heart all warm and fuzzy!
- Ferm Living Hand Towel
- House Doctor DK Rug
- Snug Studio Wall Calendar
- Stop the Water While Using Me Handsoap
- Bodie and Fou London Print
- Nuke Iron Bowl
- Le Labo Candle
- Aunti Oti Blanket
- Parallèle soixante Wooden Spoon
- Ferm Living Brass Measuring Spoons
Home is where the heart is, so they say. In this case why not have some really cool things in your home. For those of us that work from home, it’s essential to create a beautiful working environment. Ok, yes this is true but I also like to tell myself this so I have an excuse to buy some cool stuff. I’ve put a few things together that I think will add a nice touch to anyone’s home!
Still need a Halloween costume? Look no further, Animalesque is the perfect solution to your costume crisis. But I’ll let you in on a little secret, Animalesque isn’t just any costume brand, it will be a costume you hold on to for a lifetime!
‘Animalesque is a unique and independent costume brand for all those wild little creatures who love to dress up! But also for grown-up kids with an eye for something special…
Founded by artist and textile designer, Sara Lowes, Animalesque inspires creative play and helps to bring narrative to life through costume and props, capturing a sense of wonder and reconnecting children with their innate gift, and fundamental need, to imagine.
Animalesque combines Sara’s expertise in textile design – illustration, screen-print and embroidery – with her experience as a children’s storyteller, to produce playful costumes and accessories, rich with colour, texture and character.
Using a diverse range of fabrics, often recycled or collected on various travels, Sara lovingly produces her collectable creations in her London studio.’
I met Sarah at the first ever Dot to Dot awhile back and fell in love with her creations. They are unique, beautiful and timeless. I plan on getting Edith a mask now as she is older and will appreciate it a bit more or I’ll wear it:)
Check out her beautiful collection here:
Processed with VSCOcam with a7 preset
Pictures taken from pinterest
In honour of Halloween this weekend, I found it appropriate to be inspired by black. I’m a huge fan of black anyways, so I’m always quite happy to talk about it. If you look in my closet the majority of my items are black. My little one, Edith enjoys black as well. I’ve never understood why mothers are afraid to put there kids in black. It’s a very easy colour to wear and really looks good on. Edith left the house in a black shirt, black legging and a pink skirt and if I do say so myself it looked cool! And on a practical note, black hides all the paint that didn’t make it onto her painting!
Now I really love the minimalist black and white house decor as well. I admire those that can pull it out with perfection, unfortunately when it comes to my house, it’s pretty bright!
Only Black. I couldn’t agree more!
Happy Halloween week!
Last week my husband was in NYC for business so I had the little one and we had a great week! I had asked my husband to take the Monday off after he got back so we could actually hang out together while Edith was at nursery. We worked on my collection in the morning and then decided to hit the city in the afternoon. There was no plan, just see where the wind would take us. We wanted to venture on down to the Tate Modern, but my husband realised he forgot our passes, so while I was posting mail he had a very clever idea. We have an amazing friend that works at the Royal Academy, knowing that the Ai Weiwei exhibition was sold out for the day, he asked if she could get us in. And she said of course! Brilliant!
So our see where the wind takes us took us right on in to the Ai Weiwei exhibition. I had wanted to see if for awhile and was so happy to finally get the chance.
It was a very nice exhibition, ok that sounds completely ridiculous as this is Weiwei we are talking out. I am literally in awe of artist that dedicate their lives to creating such masterpieces with such meaning. I really enjoyed he artwork titled Straight. The piece is made up of iron rails that were collected from sites after the horrendous earthquake in Sichuan in 2008. Thousands upon thousands of people died in this earthquake due to poor building structures and most of these deaths were children. The poor building structure of the schools in Sichuan left many children without a future.
I watched a 15 minute video about the earthquake and the development of the artwork, Straight and was almost in tears. It took Weiwei and his team 4 years to straighten out the mangled rails taken from the earthquake rumble. 90 tons of rod make up this structure representing fault lines.
He creates art with meaning and conviction and I really really admire him for this. And of course his craftsmanship is superb! I highly recommend going to see it!
(apologies for the quality of the photos, I just had my phone on me)