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Thursday, 31 October 2013

Liked. on Fridays




 Floral finds this week!




1 Love Birds Pendant ~ Cloud Nine Creative
 
2 Looks Like Summer Bunting ~ Milk & Honey

3 Bassinet Blanket ~ MissMollyCoddle

4 Springtime Vintage Cushion ~ MyheartsingsNZ

5 Floral Elephant Watercolour ~ Clouds of Colour

6 Sun Bonnet ~ Just 4 You
 



Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Lulu's Closet





Retro tablecloths, souvenir tea towels, vintage linens...the old mixed with new, Deb creates the most wonderfully unique children's wear!

Let's chat with Deb as she shares some more


About...

Firstly, I'm a Mum. I have three gorgeous children. They keep me busy, keep me sane, and drive me nuts all at the same time!
After being a high school science teacher for 13 years, I have always wished I had more time to be creative and carry out all the ideas that run through my head! Now, I'm finally doing it. Spending my days dreaming up and creating some unique little creations from fabulous vintage and kiwiana fabrics.
Growing up, I learnt to sew by watching my Mum. Her sewing machine whirring, she would churn out the most amazing things from very little. I still remember the excitement bubbling up in my chest when I got to sew my own pair of pants alongside her. I still get this feeling sometimes. I just love it!



Beginning... 

Lulu's Closet began with a single tea towel, and the birth of the most beautiful baby girl in the world. My daughter was born in 2009. We called her Lucy.
Sometime during the sleepless milky haze of caring for a newborn, my Mother gifted me a kiwiana tea towel. The graphics on that tea towel fascinated me. The print was impressive, the weave of the textile far too amazing to dry dishes with, and so the first of my signature tea towel pinafores came about... for my wee ' Lulu'.






Inspiration... 

Vintage fabrics are my passion. I spend a lot of time sourcing amazing fabrics, the quality of which cannot be matched today. I especially adore vintage linen tea towels and consider many of them works of art. My designs are developed in a way that shows off the fabrics. The textiles are the star here. You won't find frills and fancy bits on my garments. Instead the concept is one of a walking canvas, simple garments taking this amazing imagery out of the linen cupboard and into the limelight!
The intention is to create beautiful garments that adults love and children adore wearing, out of overlooked and unconventional materials. I just love it when people comment about the childhood memories that my garments stir.
Many of my garments are one-offs or limited edition due to the rarity of the fabrics. This suits me as it's more about creating and discovering than churning out garments. Making more than a couple of the same thing bores me terribly!



Daily... 

My days begin with the household routines of school drop off for my two boys and the clean up afterwards like every mum. Then on the days my Lulu goes to preschool, I spend as much time as I can madly cutting and sewing! All designs are cut and sewn here at home by me.
A fair bit of op shop trawling goes on too, as well as the much less enjoyable computer work, emailing etc.
When my wee " helper" is at home, things are not so productive on the creative front. But certainly fun! We have recently moved to Tauranga and her and I are exploring it together and discovering all sorts of interesting places.






 Relaxing...

I really enjoy doing crafty things and relax by making things .Mosaics is one of my favs and the next on the list here is my garden steps. I love gardening and we are slowly getting our new garden producing lots of lovely fresh food for our family. Nothing better than getting outside in the sun, watering the new fruit trees and dreaming up new projects!






Connecting & Buying... 

Most of my goodies are sold directly through Facebook Market Nights. I try to have one of these each month and they are fairly user friendly. In order to make sure you don't miss them, just make sure you are getting notifications from Lulu's Closet! Do drop in and say hi!
I do take a limited number of custom orders on. Enquiries are welcome via email luluscloset@icloud.com





Giveaway... 

Deb has so very kindly given me a $30 voucher to be used in one of the upcoming Lulu Closet market nights! Wow what a very lucky winner. Thank you Deb!!! 
Please enter via the giveaway tab on Liked. by Becky's Facebook page The giveaway will close on 4 November at midnight and the winner will be announced here on my blog on 5 November.


 

Needle&I Giveaway Winner




Congratulations to ~Susan Main~ You have won a beautiful hand crafted Garland from Lauren at Needle&I!

Thank you so much Lauren





Thursday, 24 October 2013

Liked. on Fridays





Fav finds this week!




1 Seaside Romper ~ Little Alice

2 Sideboard/Buffet Table ~ Tiki House

3 Vintage Style Jewellery Organiser ~ Perch Home NZ

4 Chevron Coffee Table ~ Hibiscus

5 London Tins ~ Jamie Kay

6 Happy Place Wallart ~ River&Finn





Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Needle&I



Needle&I has such beautiful designs and 
hand crafts for children's bedrooms using 100% natural wool and cotton fabrics!

I am so happy to introduce you to Lauren 



Beginning...
 
It had been a long time coming I think. I've always made things for myself, both practically and creatively motivated. I love the creative process...coming up with an idea, finding the perfect materials, working out the best means of construction. It was a natural progression that when I had Thea I began making things to brighten up her world. I started making little creatures to hang from a very makeshift play-gym (the dining table) to keep her entertained. The garlands and mobiles developed from there and then the ideas just kept coming.



Peach Polka Dot Cloud Cushion

Naming...

That's a very good question. I'm not sure I can remember where that stream of consciousness came from! I wanted a company name which had meaning with regards to what I actually produced. It was a case of writing innumerable lists of mostly bad ideas and pondering on the good ones for long enough until something seemed to fit. 



Cloud Mobile

Daily...

My daily routine starts way too early for my liking so coffee is top of my list as soon as Thea drags me out of bed. First coffee down and the next one is set to brew. Only then can I deal with the day ahead! I have two types of days. The ones with Thea and the ones without. With the former I try to fit outings in as much as the weather permits. We live in Milford which has a very beautiful beach which I would be lost without! The other days are pretty much a mad flurry of emails, sample-making, order-filling, facebooking, photographing, ad infinitum, until I have to collect Thea again. Tiring, but great.




Block Cushion Covers

Owning...

That you are working for your interests and yours alone. I love that I can explore ideas freely without being bound to someone else's vision. It's very exciting to create your own space and voice.


Raindrops Cushion


Favourite...

The garlands are probably the most popular product from the Needle&I range. Children seem to really love their little smiling faces and the way they dangle when batted about. Personally I feel quite attached to the growth chart, anything that involves that much work is going to be special and it's something that parent and child can interact with together over the years. 

 
Growth Chart

Motivation...

I find it easy to stay motivated when I have a lot on the go. If I'm busy, I'm motivated. I think the energy of the creative process gives me the drive to move forward. When you have your own business you really need to keep the momentum going. I'm quite conscious of the need to keep trying out new ideas, good or bad, because something inevitably comes from that which keeps you progressing and interested.



'Whatever the Weather' Wall Hanging

Advice...

Some of my advice comes from the benefit of hindsight and learning the hard way. One of the biggest learnings for me is that it's really important to be disciplined about work vs play. I wasn't very good at this at the beginning and it can lead to lots of late nights and weekend work if you don't establish good habits from day one. This is especially true if you have a family...be careful not to let work take over your time with them. The other thing is that you do need to be prepared to take some risk and invest in what you are developing. It's scary, no two ways about it, but you have to stand behind your work and trust that what you put in will be worth it in the end.



Relaxing...

Hmmm. This one is a bit of a bone of contention! I'm really not very good at relaxing. I was better at it before I had a child! The best way for me to relax is to turn off my phone and step away from the computer, which I'm trying very hard to be disciplined about. It's very easy for technology to engulf your spare time. Gardening has become my new form of relaxation. It's hard to find time to be still when you have a child so getting my hands in the dirt is a good way of combining her energy with my need to slow down.


Teal Cloud Cushion

Connecting & Buying...
 
I sell directly to the public via Etsy and Felt as well as through my lovely retailers. If I'm not tied up with work I'll be trying to find time to cook for pleasure's sake and I like to keep in touch with this interest on my blog. I'm also semi-active on Facebook (a job in and of itself) so you can always find me there if you want to say hi!


Thank you Lauren! 
I have loved finding your beautiful business and your designs are so gorgeous. 
They certainly reflect a certain peace and calmness making them perfect for children's bedrooms!





Giveaway...

Lauren has ever so kindly given me one of her beautiful Garlands worth $55 to give to a very lucky winner! The winner will get to choose which one they would like and they can be viewed here.
Please enter the giveaway on Liked. by Becky's Facebook page. The winner will be announced here on my blog on Tuesday 29 October.


 


 

Perch Home Giveaway Winner




 Congratulations to ~ Bronwyn McKinnon ~ You have won the gorgeous giveaway of three Bloomingville glass jars with cork lids from 
Helle at Perch Home!

Thank you so much Helle!


 
 




Friday, 18 October 2013

Liked. on Fridays




These are my favourite finds this week! 
Follow the links below to find out more about these amazing 
NZ businesses 





1 Bowling Pin Buddies ~ Izzy Bee Baby 
Handmade by Sharon 


2 Macarons ~ Good Honest products
Owner Steven
4/231 Annex Road
Middleton
Christchurch

3 Coffee Table ~Miss Lolo 
Designer and owner Tamzyn


4 Peppermint Leaf Soap ~ Alba Rosa
Made by Michelle


5 Wall Name ~ Mason & Friends
Made by Dania


6 Gorgeous BOO! Girls Romper ~ Petite Maison
Handmade by Evie

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Perch Home




Perch Home is an online store full to the brim with the most beautiful European products. Think funky, vintage and retro combined with polkadots, flowers and loads of colour!

I am so happy to introduce you to Helle


About...
Born and raised in Denmark I came to NZ in 1993 (after 5 wonderful years in London).  I have a partner and teenage daughter - we all love to travel and cooking is another big passion of mine.  Big thanks to my partner for giving up his man-shed for all my stock and to my daughter for helping out whenever we get crazy busy. 



Perch Kitchen Utensils

Starting...
I started in 2012 – after resigning my full time job.  I felt that with all the experience and time in the industry I could do this all for myself, instead of being paid to do it for someone else.  I also loved all these European brands that just weren’t available here so thought I could and should do something about that !



Perch Plates & Bowls


Naming...

Funny that was the one part that I agonised over for months. I loved the little bird, and the retro colours in my logo – which I had started to play with before I even had the name.  From there I googled “other words for home” and perch was one of them !!  Seemed perfect, and yes I know it also means a fish, try googling perch and you will see J



Perch Wall Art


Sourcing Products...

I source from distributors within NZ but what really sets Perch Home apart from other online stores is that we also bring in brands from overseas that no-one else stocks here in NZ.  We love discovering new European brands – our biggest success with that is probably Bloomingville from Denmark.  So UK, Holland and Denmark is where most our stock comes from.



Perch Kitchen Melamine


Daily...

I work from home, our stockroom and office/showroom is here but I love an early start – and since I don’t have to sit in traffic I can start working at 7am most mornings.  I admit to browsing Facebook & Pinterest before anything else – its so addictive !  Then its checking emails, packing orders, updating website, Facebook etc.  I am also always on the lookout for new products and brands so spend heaps of time doing that.  The rest of the day is filled with a lot of admin – running your own business I try to be involved in every aspect from the boring GST return to visiting trade fairs and supplier showrooms.  Also try to connect with other businesses and blogs – it can sometimes be a very virtual world so any “real person” contact is really important to me.



Perch Travel

Owning...

I love EVERYTHING about owning my own business!  Its probably the best decision I have ever made, I can honestly say I love every part of my job now. Work is no longer a strict 9-5 thing.  I may take a morning off to spend with my partner or daughter or meet a friend for coffee - but then I can work till 9pm that day if needed.  I love that I am in charge of my own life in a way I never have been before and that work and family life works side by side and one never takes over from the other – the way it should be ! 


Perch Stationery

Favourite...
Orla Kiely has been huge for us.  We love her classic retro patterns and colours and the quality of her designs and materials are just superb.

Second to that Pip Studio is also a personal favourite (did I mention I love birds) and the amazing Lotus bowls from Denmark.  Bloomingville has been a real hit here in New Zealand, I love that Kiwi’s have taken to the fantastic Scandinavian style they represent.
Motivation...

It can be hard as I work by myself most of the time and don’t have another person to push me when I need it ! But a quick walk with the dog, coffee with a friend or just remind myself that I am super lucky to be able to do something I love so much !  I also have some great customers and love getting emails and occasional photos of the products they have purchased displayed in their home, or just an email where they let me know they love their purchase.




Advice...

Don’t worry too much about what other people in your industry are doing, don’t compare yourself with someone very successful and start doubting yourself.  Take inspiration from them instead, do your homework and find out what makes YOU different and then focus on that - find your niche and do what you do best.



Perch Gifts

Relaxing...

I love to travel !  Whether it’s a weekend at the family bach in Whangamata, a trip to Europe to visit family or just a day trip somewhere fun.  I love exploring new places, soak up the different culture and just get away from everyday life.
When travelling isn't possible I also love just hanging out with family and friends – enjoying good food and wine seems to follow !
I love to walk  - we have a dog which just makes it so much easier to get out and explore.  Love eating out too, Auckland has some amazing eateries!



From here...

I cant believe how much Perch Home has grown and how well received our products have been – the magazines, blogs and other businesses have been a great help and inspiration so I think we will just keep doing what we do, growing our product range and finding “hard to find” products for the NZ market.



Perch Bathroom Storage

Connecting/buying from Perch...
 
Browse & buy from Helle's gorgeous website www.perchhomewares.co.nz

Become a fan on her facebook page Perch Home New Zealand

Follow Perch on twitter www.twitter.com/PerchHomeNZ



There are so many gorgeous products at Perch and I completely love this business!


Giveaway...

Helle has so kindly given me a set of three Bloomingville Glass Bottles with cork lids valued at $128 to giveaway to a very lucky person. Please enter here to be into win!

Thank you so much Helle!




























FinndieLoo Giveaway Winner




 Congratulations to ~ Angela Shearer ~ you have won a Plunket Book Cover from FinndieLoo

Thanks so much Claire!