Summer is finally here and last weekend my husband, two children and I headed to Box Hill in Surrey. After admiring the stunning panoramic views whilst munching on our sandwiches, we headed into the woodlands for a walk. When we entered the woods, dimmed by the lush green canopy overhead, the children spotted a huge tree and raced over to climb it. As we wandered further along, each magnificent tree seemed so inviting, their long branches almost beckoning them over, it proved impossible for them to resist. Eventually our walk became a series of tree scaling adventures.
As I trailed behind the children, watching them run towards their next big climb, I couldn't help but compare this day to one the week before when we had taken them to a theme park. It couldn't have been more different. The theme park was expensive, not to mention all the extras, but that wasn't what I was thinking about. The real contrast for me was how different I was with the children in the woods. I could watch them run ahead, seeing them stop every so often to look at a bug or balance on a log, and I didn't worry for a moment that I was about to lose them in a crowd. The previous weekend I had shouted 'stop!' whenever they had run more than a few feet away and it was exhausting. Now as we walked along the forest trail, with its path winding as far as the eye could see, it was so nice for them to skip ahead without constantly hearing 'stop' - not to mention so much more relaxing for me! The children were reluctant to go home after their day surrounded by nature. We drove down the hill on Zig Zag Road (which is as much fun as it sounds) and both children were still exhilarated, talking about the trees they had conquered.
Now imagine having some of this outdoor magic in your child's bedroom, every day, rain or shine! We have done just that, with carefully sourced products that are eco-friendly and support communities around the world. With this ethos in mind, we have the perfect interior design pieces to make your little ones fall in love with the natural world around them...
For your little adventurer
One of our most impressive items of furniture is the Treehouse bed. It brings the enchantment of the forest straight to your child's bedroom. This exquisite piece of furniture has been carefully designed as a traditional treehouse, with cleverly arranged boards, a pitched roof and a window to peak out from. Each Treehouse Bed is handmade in Belgium, using traditional methods, from PEFC approved wood. It is available in 27 different colours or in a natural wood finish, using solvent free paint. Its inventive design is versatile too, available as a single or bunk bed. The Treehouse Bed will provide endless fun for your child!
What is wonderful about the Treehouse Bed is how it sets a scene - a constant reminder of being outside, with all the excitement of climbing trees and being surrounded by everything to do with nature. If you decide you can't get enough of this outdoors theme, there are so many ingenious ways to accessorise it. We love vibrant colours and prints and these are shown perfectly in our range of nursery and child's bedroom wallpaper, with themes around trees and forests. Cleverly designed in hues that reflect every season, it is easy to find the perfect wallpaper to match any colour scheme.
Another way to bring your child's walls to life is with Nature and Wildlife Wall Stickers. These charming stickers can be applied with ease and work well as either a main feature, or positioned in a particular area of the room. Both look stunning and immediately transform a wall into its own outdoor story.
Your child can bring their love of the outdoors into their bedroom with a bright yellow tree lamp, in the shape of an apple tree. Or focussing on the 'house' in treehouse, we have a quirky little House shaped wall lamp. Made from natural wood, it is easy to imagine a cuckoo lurking behind it's little window.
When your little adventurer comes to hang up their explorer clothes and bag for another day, what better place than on a wall mounted tree hook. The Birch Tree Wall Hook will be a favourite and you never know, it might even encourage them to do the actual hanging up!
For Your Up and Coming Adventurer
It is so important to give your child an early start when it comes to introducing the natural world. Here are some wonderful ideas to develop their imaginations and bring a touch of soothing nature into their lives from the very beginning...
For little ones who aren't big enough for a Treehouse Bed, they can still dream about climbing a tree in this wonderfully innovative cot with its own little roof. It is made in a sustainable way using FSC approved wood and finished with solvent free organic varnish. This brilliant design will give them a cosy cocooned feeling, whilst providing the perfect introduction to the wonders of being in a real treehouse.
Your child can look up from their treehouse cot and watch a sweet mummy hedgehog dancing in the air with her three little babies following close behind. Handmade in Denmark, this animal mobile with its calming movement is a perfect addition to a woodland inspired nursery
Little cherubs love to be cosy, whether they are outside or at home. Their introduction to nature will be complete with a Warm grey cotton cot Bumper, made from 100% organic cotton.
The perfect finish to your child's Woodland Themed Bedroom!
It’s December and winter is finally here! We’re looking forward to the Christmas holidays, cosying up at home and going for frosty walks.
If going out to do Christmas shopping fills you with dread, we’ve done the hard work for you and put together some of our favourite, ethical gifts for your stylish little people, that don’t cost the earth.
Summer is here and you might be feeling the urge to refresh and update your interior style now that the sun is shining and the windows are open!
But stylish interiors aren’t just for the grownups. There is so much choice of on-trend furniture and accessories for your little ones - no-one has to miss out on good design!
This summer brings some fresh new lines and great new suppliers to Castles for Rascals, so here are some ideas for keeping it cool for the kids!
With fingers tightly crossed for no more snow and ice, let’s allow ourselves to finally feel the first stirrings of spring in the air as we reach the end of March and Easter approaches! The saying goes that if March comes in like a lion, it will go out like a lamb, so maybe we can count on some bright and blowsy spring days over the Easter break.
It’s so exciting when someone we are close to reveals that they are expecting a baby; we can begin to look forward to soft baby cuddles and gummy smiles, and what is more we have a reason to eye up snuggly blankets and cute outfits for the imminent arrival!
How did it get to be this time of year again?! With the nights drawing in and the temperature dropping, our thoughts begin to turn to Christmas. It’s a time for getting together with family, sharing joyful moments and creating happy memories. But it can feel like an increasingly drawn-out sparkle-fest threatening to engulf us all der a tide of plastic and glitter. So this Christmas, we’re going back to nature with our ideas for great earth-friendly crafts and gifts for the little people in your life.
Every year, I look forward to the return of autumn with its soft, gently shifting light and rich, jewel-like colours. British summer weather can often be disappointing, but those crisp, clear autumn days with the first hint of a chill in the air are always welcome. For me, autumn brings back fond memories too; my wedding and the birth of my first child both happened in this glorious season!
Both Fran and I have had great fun making some super easy Easter crafts with our little ones. My 3 year old daughter, Claudia, and I kicked things off by making some Easter inspired yellow chick wrapping paper. She loved making the yellow paint dots and sticking the beaks on - even if they were a little bit fiddly for her little fingers - she was so pleased with the result!
It was so easy too. We used a glass stopper but you could use a pom pom or a cork. We had a little pot of yellow paint left over from a previous craft project but you could use any yellow paint. Dot the paper with yellow and leave to dry. Then either colour in some paper with an orange felt tip or use orange paper and cut out lots of little beaks. Glue these on using a glue stick and draw on eyes and legs.
Use the paper to wrap an Easter gift or make a card ......Happy Easter Everyone!
LOOK OUT FOR FRAN AND AMELIAS PAPER BUNNIES LATER ON WEDNESDAY
Shop our Easter gifts to wrap in the paper SHOP EASTER
We are delighted to be featured in the Decorating Dilemmas section of this months issue of Angels & Urchins, the 'must have' magazine for London parents. They chose to feature our Peekaboo wardrobe by Kutikai in their Decorating Dilemmas section highlighting how great it is to have a multifunctional piece of furniture that not only provides great storage but will take your child from baby to teen - oh and did we mention its super stylish too?!
Spoil the little people you love this Valentines Day with one of our heart, star or angel wings cushions. My daughter, Claudia, thought they were great to play peekaboo with as the centre of the heart makes a great place to rest your chin and peek out!
Made with natural cotton and dyes they are washable too. At £27.50 each they are probably cheaper than a dozen roses!!