Just add a Gift Tag…

Over the years I’ve found myself with a variety of unintentional collections of this, that and the other. Things that I’m sure I’ll need in the future so can’t bear to throw away…You know the kind of thing….Odd buttons, old keys, mini toiletries from hotels and…..Gift tags!

Yes, it’s a thin line between ‘collector’ and ‘hoarder’ at this point and my profession as a gift wrapper won’t save me on this one as after rummaging through a very large box of gift tags, it’s clear my love of them started way before my business began! (Many moons ago judging by some of the styles.. Apparently tastes do change!)

So, if like me you have some (??!!) very pretty gift tags you’re hoarding (I mean saving for a rainy day) that you don’t have matching paper for, then fear not….You can use them up and plain paper is your friend!  Couple the tag with a bit of ribbon and some imagination (in other words hole punch a second hole in the tag, thread a length of ribbon through, secure on the back with double sided) and this is the result….A unique and pretty decorative touch to embellish a gift!

kraft and tag final

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If cake be the food of love…

If you’re wanting a truly bespoke gift for someone then how about creating a hamper for them?  A wicker basket, a bottle of port and some smelly cheese may be lovely for some but thinking outside the box lwh (or wicker basket) can mean you end up with a more personal gift which you’ll have a great deal of fun creating!

Like this pretty baking hamper (pictured below). Just perfect for someone with a passion for baking and a thing for pink! (That’ll be my friend Jenny then!). Indeed, tried and tested and the results were good…She was thrilled to pieces when I gave it to her for her birthday and I knew that the baking tin I’d used as the container would come to good use over the years! Now that’s a bonus…Time for tea and cake anyone? Jenny does make the most gorgeous cake (Do I get lots of ‘friend points’ and an extra slice of cake for pointing this out?)

So, as it’s good to share, should you fancy a go at creating one or something similar and need a helping hand, you can find our tips below. Enjoy!

hamper-and-mixer

Our tips to creating a perfectly pretty baking hamper!

  1. The first thing  you’ll need is a container for your products. Remember that it needs to be large enough to fit a variety of products in so have a think about what you’ll be putting in and ensure it’s the right size, not just in length or width but height too! We chose a baking tin but you could use an open cake tin (with the lid sitting underneath), a mixing bowl or something else that fits with your baking theme.
  2. Once you have your container, it’s time to get the products to go inside. As well as baking ingredients what about a cookery magazine/book, tea towel, wooden spoon or baking accessories? Do take time to think about the size, colour and shape of the items you’ll be adding as this can make a big difference to how the finished hamper will look. A variety of items that are tall, smaller, wider, thinner etc will all help to create interest. If you can pick products with colors that co-ordinate with one another (as we did for ours) that works best but don’t worry if not…There are ways you can tie colors together!
  3. Before you add your items its a good idea to line your container with some paper or tissue paper is it will help to prevent any damage to the base from the products you place inside.  Add your products creating height at the back and then coming lower to the front. If something isn’t tall enough or you need it to be more angled, use scrunched up paper underneath or to the side to create the desired look and when you’re happy with it all, fill in any gaps with paper to hold the products securely before adding your decorative top layer. We’ve used paper straw but you could use shredded tissue etc but do pick wisely, as the right color can really help to tie your products together and show them off at their best!
  4. Now it’s time to wrap it all up in cellophane, securing underneath with sticky tape and add a ribbon/bow/decorative touch. Again, use something that will co-ordinate and tie all the colors together. We’ve used some gorgeous  Julie Dodsworth Ribbon and to complete the look we’ve tied in a little wooden heart keepsake from our own collection at moreprettythings.co.uk which says ‘If cake be the food of love bake on’.
  5.  Voila! You’ve created a perfectly pretty baking hamper just perfect for that special someone!

Now, even with hampers I like to give the element of surprise by wrapping it up …So, the question is, how do you attractively wrap an oddly shaped hamper?  That’s easy ……

hamper-wrapped-up

Find out more about our Gift Wrapping Workshops at http://www.moreprettythings.co.uk

New Year…A time to reorganise?

Don’t you just LOVE the New Year…I can’t tell you how excited I get by it.

January is officially a time to let go of the old and bring in the new ….Which for me translates into a huge urge to reorganise every nook and cranny in the house. Not necessarily throwing away anything and replacing it with new but revamping and sorting out the things I have already into some kind of order so they feel new and refreshed! With the turn of the new year I am filled full of creative thoughts and so full of inspiration I could burst!

It’s an ambitious project to do everything I want to do as we’re not simply talking a bit of ‘spring cleaning’ here but completely organising EVERYTHING in the house top to bottom! In honesty…I can remember feeling exactly the same way every January for as long as I can remember.posh-stylish-cabinet-storage-for-shoes

Is it just me or is there anyone else out there who dreams of achieving the impossible and creating a totally organised home?

Yes, I get excited at the thought I could actually succeed in being so organised that I’d have a list on hand of all the appliances and guarantee expiry dates, numbers to call if they go wrong (just incase) so I can at a glance sort it out rather than spending two days trying to find a receipt of purchase from x amount of years ago when the dishwasher finally decides to stop working…Yes, in an ideal world (my ideal organised world) the loft contents would be itemised and labeled, the cutlery drawer would have nothing in it the wrong way round, my shoes wouldn’t be all mixed up in the bottom of the wardrobe (why can you only find one when you’re in a hurry?!) but displayed in pairs in rows , there’d be no out of date herbs and spices in the cupboard (especially nutmeg!) and I’d know exactly where I’d put my 1st or even 2nd pair of reading glasses cos I’d be that organised!

Alas, I feel it may take longer than a whole year to achieve everything that’s on the list in my head …I have made a start on the laundry room and was about to keep going on the ironing mountain today (honest I was) but then the phone rang, the doorbell chimed, the dog wanted walking….Yes life has a habit of altering your best intentions and in making you think about what’s really important…

An organised joey2home is a nice thought and some of it I’m sure I’ll get to do in the coming weeks but it’ll never be as important as spending time with one of my lovely sons who’s out of the blue just dropped in as he’s some free time today to do something together, taking a call from my husband who’s taken time out of his busy day to see how my busy day is, tell me he loves me and ask me if I need anything fetching in for tea….Replying to a text or email from friends to organise a catch up or seeing the excited waggy tail of a dog who’s realised he’s getting an extra walk at the expense of a neat cutlery drawer.

Time is precious…Loved ones even more precious…My disorganised home will still be here when I have the time for it!

Enjoy and appreciate the important things in your life this January everyone! x