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!!
We have been thinking a lot about Hygge at Castles for Rascals. And talking about it a lot! So we are particularly delighted to share this piece on Hygge that came out of a conversation with our brilliant friend and talented writer Louise McCourt a few weeks ago.
And we've added some of our favourite super cosy things to inspire you to create your own Hygge atmosphere at home.
Thanks Louise for sharing your fab article and happy Hygge-ing to us all!
The other night over dinner, a friend of mine told me about an interesting concept she was going to try out with her family. ‘It’s called hygge,’ she said (pronounced hue-ga), ‘a Danish approach to enjoying time with your family.’ Now call me cynical, but as soon as she announced this I couldn’t help but think my family would probably have more fun with a box of Toffifee. In my experience, being told about a certain way to do things rarely turns out to be a good thing. So I prepared myself to be told that I needed to stamp on my iphone and set light to the sweetie drawer. But then she explained more about it, and do you know what, I was hooked.
I love Scandinavian design and Scandinavian inspired patterns. I find myself drawn to the simplicity, humour and easy integration into most homes. Their simple stylish storage solutions that can help keep kids' bedrooms from looking like demolition sites!! The use of the unexpected and the quirky. The Scandis have brought us some pretty cool stuff over the years from IKEA to Lego, the Stokke Tripp Trapp Chair to children’s TV classic the Moomins to name but a few - all have been hugely popular and appealed to all ages.
Stylish washable rugs that are helping children go to school.
We love our marvellous supplier, Lorena Canals.
Do you love or hate wallpaper? Some people think it’s a bit old-fashioned or don’t like it because it seems rather challenging and messy to put up.
Well, we love it! Once you overcome the fear of wallpaper paste, we love the way it can entirely transform your child’s room in an instant. It can make a room seem bigger just by the addition of a single wallpapered feature wall. It can make a small space look cozy and it can be dramatic or subtle. What it will always do is add character and personality to your child’s room.
Victoria Cramsie conceived the marvellous company PaperBoy from her frustration that she couldn’t find decent wallpaper for her two young boys when they had grown too big for their nursery decor. Her imaginative designs gave Castles for Rascals founder Naomi Callan, her initial inspiration and made her realise that there were considered designs for children that worked with a more adult style. Thank you Victoria!
The designs have been inspired with the creative input of the boys who love ‘edgy’ images as well as more classic dinosaurs, dragons and robots. Victoria has always responded to the children’s instincts and takes on board their sometimes surprising sophistication regarding colour, simplicity and texture.
Victoria is totally passionate about what she does and really understands the transformative power of wallpaper in a room. She works on creating fantastically original wallpaper reworking traditional boyish childhood themes with often slightly off-the-wall (ha ha) and subversive funny ideas. The result is really vibrant,up-to-date children’s wallpaper that is always well crafted, high quality and exudes personality and humour whilst still being sophisticated enough to appeal to grown-up tastes.
Victoria describes the process as ‘…where boy’s themes meet grown-up style. Two opposing concepts coming together.’
We had a chat with Victoria to learn more about her fabulous wallpaper and this is what she told us.
Every parent wants to create a safe environment for their child to sleep in so securing windows, covering electrical sockets and wires and making sure blind cords are secured and can’t be reached is of paramount importance.
But what about the hidden toxins? There are chemicals in almost everything around us. Children’s lungs are still developing, they breathe more rapidly and inhale more air per breath than adults and so are far more susceptible to airborne pollutants than us grown ups. So we thought we’d look at a few ways you can help to reduce the amount of potential toxins your child comes into contact with.