I have a few thoughts for blog posts coming up but I was really keen to write this and give a bit of airtime to some of the lovely people who have helped us to make Darcey’s world a very beautiful one.
I’m a huge believer in buying from small businesses. Many of my friends and family will know that we often supply a unique handmade gift for special occasions and it’s for a variety of reasons. You’ve probably all seen the posts on Facebook from farmers markets and crafts fairs saying that buying from small businesses pays for a little girls’ ballet lessons and helps put food on the table. That really resonates with me. I’d love to be able to make a living off of a talent one day and I think it’s essential that we do support these little ventures that are realising peoples’ dreams. Secondly, these people are amazingly talented! My house is covered in little treasures and unique items that get loads of attention from people because they are beautiful. I love the stories behind these things and the responses they evoke from people.
Yes, these things sometimes cost a little more than you might pay in a high street store but they are worth every penny. I’m going to talk about a few things here that are by no means everything we’ve bought from small businesses but give their pages a look and, if you’re able to, perhaps spend a little of your hard earned money and support someone who’s trying to make a go of their dream. (Christmas is coming up!)
First Up: Plump
As you’ve seen, Darcey’s nursery is grey, lemon and mint and I saw these gorgeous whimsical clouds and knew they’d match perfectly. I was able to select from an amazing variety of fabrics and obviously chose stars to match her room. These sit in the corner of Darcey’s cot and remind her (ha!) to go to sleep and dream happily. I absolutely love them and Darcey regularly pulls them through the bars of her cot to lie on and cuddle.
Another Whimsical Wonder: Love Lottie Textiles & Furnishings
This is one of my favourite things in Darcey’s room and it hangs in her window, watching the world go by. Darcey loves to watch it swaying in the breeze and to push it back & forward. You can buy these gorgeous balloons on their own, with the cloud which you can have personalised, and with mini bunting the whole way round. She also makes gorgeous mobiles from rain clouds which I would have definitely bought, had we not bought a gorgeous Djeco one in Cornwall!
We’ve just ordered a really bright one for our special nephew Harry & I can’t wait to see how it turns out.
A family favourite; not just for little ones: Mr & Mrs Jones Make Lovely Things
I first came across the lovely Laura at Mr & Mrs Jones when I bought Nath a birthday present last year. He’s an amazing cook and I wanted to get him a lovely antipasti platter and couldn’t believe how reasonable their prices were in comparison to the quality of work you got. They make stunning slate & solid wood tableware & furniture and have recently started posting some beautiful children’s items too. I ordered this letter D for Darcey’s room this summer and the colours match perfectly. Hand painted, I know nobody else will have this beauty and there are a variety of colours and patterns you can choose from too. I’m currently eyeing up one of their beautiful Christmas Eve boxes which I’d love to start as a festive tradition with Darcey this year.
A Little Seaside Magic: The Seashack
Gemma & her Mum Shirley are the team behind The Seashack and it’s literally like they’ve taken all my dreams and turned them into art. Such beautiful pieces using lovely quotes and seaside influences to brighten up any room. This is a teeny little door hanger that sits on Darcey’s wardrobe but its simplicity is why I love it. I’m going to write a Cornwall post after our holiday this week but this tiny little slice of the sea reminds me of where home will be one day & that’s why I love it.
A Lovely Local: Button Up
We’re fortunate enough that Jules from Button Up lives just round the corner from us but I’m sure she’d welcome friends from afar too. I found out about Jules through my Mum who bought some beautiful gifts for Darcey when she was born. I haven’t photographed them all because the light was awful and I couldn’t get the detail in some things. Jules works with anything wooden and is a pyrographer (I think that’s the term!) using a wood burning tool to personalise the things she makes. The beautiful bunting and memory box were gifts from Mum and the driftwood heart was something Nath bought and took to Jules to personalise with our favourite Cornish places for our anniversary. She’s a great stop for handmade gifts with items to suit all budgets & she’s also a lovely lady to boot!
My lovely friend Mrs W: Jolly Giraffe Crafts
I’ve borrowed Tamsin’s photo for this because it’s far better than my rubbish one. I went to university with Tamsin, the lovely lady behind JG and for three years she kept her hidden stitching talent a secret until one day some very beautiful creations began popping up in my newsfeed. And from there my love affair with funky fabrics began! We have loads of JG things in most rooms in our house but these were wet bags we commissioned before Darcey was born and which we still use now. There inner lining is made of a rip stop (I think!) fabric which is waterproof so we use the little ones to hold medicines in Darcey’s change bag and they have already prevented some major disasters!
Darcey loves the bright colours and fun zips and they are so practical and unique. Tamsin will use fabrics you want and is just promoting her Christmas range of products now which are enchanting! She is also working on a very special secret Christmas present for Darcey in the moment (in conjunction with the big man himself, obviously!) which I will blog about later down the line because it’s going to deserve a whole post to itself I’m quite sure!
And finally: I can’t link here because it’s a profile page but another hidden talent is my lovely (ex!) colleague Nikola Round Who has created this complete masterpiece for us. I knew it would be good but I wasn’t expecting this brilliance. Nik tailored this perfectly to everything I wanted. Although she’s never met Darcey, Nath or Lily she captured them exactly, putting them into their favourite clothes (she had strict instructions that Nath had to wear shorts because he never wears trousers & his favourite Eagles jersey) and it’s literally perfect. Nik is taking commissions for these at the moment via Personal Message on Facebook so if you want me to put you in touch, let me know. She comes highly recommended.
As I’ve written this I’ve thought of 4 other things I could have added but I’m now on the M5 & nowhere near home – it’s not that we’re not in love with those things but my 6am brain just let them slip through the net! Please check out each of these pages and give the ladies and gents behind them some love. And please, whenever you get chance, buy local & buy small. And in exchange you’ll get happy feelings and a big smile on your face when the exciting packages arrive!