I am loving the envelope as a wrapping option for flat items, gift cards or printed gift vouchers. Envelopes have a fascinating history (yes they do) and there are so many envelopes from which to choose. Pick up some coloured envelopes, textured envelopes, natural paper envelopes or you could even make your own. Envelopes also look rather fabulous lined up en masse so if you are giving vouches or promotional items away don't rule out the envelope.
I make my own envelopes to wrap larger items. They are easy to create and are perfect for gifts made of fabric such as scarves, T Shirts, tea towels and napiery. My secret tip for giving a large envelope wrap form is to pop a piece of cardboard inside. This helps the wrap keep its shape and also take a ribbon or twine.
So Next time you have a wrap that is flat or relatively flat...remember to envelope yourself in envelopes.
Just like clothing, jewellry, shoes and children's names, dog breeds come in and out if fashion. Which is why I was so interested to read an article by the ABC on the must have designer dogs. The article even had a graph. It must be proper.
And what do you know...French Bulldogs and Dachshunds lead the way as the dogs de jour. This makes me feel just a little bit vindicated because because I have been in love with cute gift tags and bunting in the shape of dogs. I think it adds a cute touch to a dog lover's gift.
Like most things fashionable it is hard to know why something comes into favour and equally why it drops off the cool radar. But when it comes to French Bulldogs and Dachshunds there are a few indicators. Firstly, the celebrity element. When Hugh Jackman poses with pictures of himself and his Frenchie called Dali, you know you'd better get one. Secondly, the trend to smaller houses and apartment living are a boon for the smaller breeds - Great Danes are struggling. Thirdly, these breeds have a certain savvy personality about them which make them ideal for owners who are single as well as families with children.
People who are drawn to a particular breed are often drawn to one another - their doggie obsession giving them something to bond over. If you like a dachshund, you'll really love it and want your fellow doxies lovers to love it too. If you adore your French Bulldog, you're automatically a bestie with other Frenchie owners.
It's nearly three years since the movie Frozen hit our screens with its mighty messages of girl power, sisterhood, loss, and letting go, making it the highest grossing animated film of all time and the fifth highest grossing film ever ever ever.
With such phenomenal ongoing success, and the release of the short sequel Frozen Fever and with Christmas peeking over the horizon, we are asking ourselves has the passion for Frozen thawed? Will anything remotely snowflake looking be snapped up as soon as it is placed on the shelves?
We think there is one more Christmas left in the snowflake look. We are not talking about the heavily branded Frozen merchandising like cups, plates, worrisome party favours and really odd looking table cloths that are in every cheap and cheerful bargain store. We are talking about the elegant snowflake and silvery theme which has a certain timeless elegance AND could speak to Frozen if it had to ( just in case the screaming toddler of one of your Christmas guests is Frozen mad).
We are seeing beautiful snowflake gift wraps in silver and icicle glitter being snapped up.
We are seeing silvery blue winter garlands create an instant winter wonderland.
We are witnessing pearly white snowflake gift tags being fought over. If you would like to order this tags just click the photo to Email us.
We are noticing snowflake ornaments – which to us a really a present topper waiting to be deployed –the first to go in the shopping basket.
And the last time we saw a sparkly silver snowflake motif on a crisp white napkin was in mid-October.
Even as we swelter at Christmas time with not a snow flurry in sight, it seems the snowflake is destined to continue its dream run as the princess of all Christmas motifs. When it comes to the snowflake motif, It will be a long long time before we let it go.
The first and most earnestly asked question at our workshops is “How do I wrap an oddly shaped gift?”
The quickest fail safe option is to put the gift in a box. Why struggle to wrap on oddly shaped gift for the sake of it? I have seen a lot of paper sacrificed in the pursuit of wrapping an unusually or irregularly shaped object with a less than stellar outcome. Put the gift in a box and wrap it well.
If you can't put the gift in a box, then it is time to make the gift easier to wrap and harder to identify. Wrap the gift in a few layers of bubble wrap or tissue paper building up unusual indents and angles with extra wrap. The extra layers will add intrigue as the recipient unwraps it.
Your aim is to keep layering until the shape approximates a rectangular prism and you cannot accurately determine what the object is. Then you begin wrapping the gift with your chosen wrapping paper. Select a sheet of paper that is about three to four times the length of the gift. Put the paper in portrait position and place the gift about 5 cm from the short edge of the paper nearest to you. Bring the two long sides of paper into the centre of the gift – the sides don’t have to meet. Fold in the short edge nearest to the gift and then roll the gift three times – viola – a neat little package that disguises what lies within.
Finally, you could always make a feature of the unusually shaped gift. I am thinking something like a tuba which contestants at the Scotch Tape gift wrapping contests had to conquer.
Leave the gift unwrapped or partially wrapped in all its glory and embellish it with a major ribbon or ornament to suit the theme. Then present your gift to the lucky recipient with a knowing smile.
Learn how to wrap gifts of any size, shape or structure at our gift wrapping courses. Lots of tips, lots of laughs and lots of learning from others.
I love bunting. From celebration bunting, wedding bunting, decorator bunting to bunting with a special milestone message, count me in. In fact I love anything that can be draped or festooned. For me bunting is a clever touch that packs a big punch by quickly amping up an event or space.
I also love the derivation of words and phrases. I am an amateur etymologist. I am fascinated by the way words come into vogue. I eagerly wait for the Macquarie Dictionary to announce its annual word of the year. How excited was I when in February this year the Dictionary announced mansplain as 2014 word of the year and share plate as the people’s choice. I am now on a mission to make bunting the word of the year.
So you can imagine my shock when I was asked at a recent designer market “What is the exact difference between bunting and a garland?” But shock soon turned to curiosity. Surely those who love special touches and event flourishes would know. Surely Ita Buttrose had spoken on the subject. Alas no – so I had to dig a little deeper.
Today bunting refers to brightly coloured triangular or pennant shaped flags made of fabric, paper, wood or even plastic strung together and used for parties and special events. But bunting historically refers to a collection of naval flags used to communicate messages and signals.
It is believed the word bunting derived from the material it was created from called buntine an open weave lightweight wool fabric used on navy boats for flags because of its ability to hold colour over a long period of time. In turn, the word buntine is thought to have derived from bonting the middle English term for fabric.
In fact the officer responsible for raising signals using flags is known as "bunts", a term apparently still used for a ship's communications officer. If the history of fabric fascinates you, you can keep researching in books such as Eric Kerridge’s Textile Manufactures in Early Modern England for weeks.
Garlands on the other hand are a decorative wreath or chord, originally made of flowers or foliage, worn for ornament, as an honour or hung on something for decoration. The word comes from the French "guirlande", itself from the Italian "ghirlanda", a braid.
According to my dearest friend, Encyclopaedia Britannica, Garlands can be a band, or chain joined at the ends to form a circle (wreath) worn on the head (chaplet) or draped in loops (festoon or swag). Britannica also tells us Garlands have been a part of religious ritual and tradition since Egyptian times when garlands of flowers were placed on mummies as a sign of celebration in entering the afterlife. The Greeks decorated their homes, civic buildings, and temples with garlands and placed them crosswise on banquet tables. In ancient Rome, garlands of rose petals were worn, and carved wooden festoons decorated homes. What great gifts to the world from the funky Romans – aqueducts and festoons.
So now I get it the distinction!!! Bunting describes flags or flag- a-like treasures. A garland is a decorative chord or chain of flowers, ornaments or shapes. But the main thing is they both can be draped and looped to form a decorative statement. And you can’t have too much draping, looping, festooning or swagging I say.
I particularly love the wooden chalkboard bunting that my sister and I found in the States, because it can be used over and over again – the more gatherings and milestones you have the more magnificent messages.
Our chalkboard bunting has been used to celebrate everything from a wedding wishing well, to the countdown to Christmas to Australia Day and a welcome home to a rabbit which had been lost.
The bunting comes with 15 discrete pieces which covers all the majors – Happy Birthday, Merry Christmas, World’s Best Dad, and Class of 2015. That’s before you get to the hours of endless fun describing your message in 15 characters of less – about 10.7 % of a tweet. And since I found out a great tip for keeping the actual chalkboard extra clean I am unstoppable – just wipe on a bit of coca cola (no kidding) on the chalkboard and hey presto – crisp streak free bunting even the royal navy would be proud of.
We love the pineapple. It is a timeless motif that manages to match a fascinating history with contemporary appeal
Our glitter gold pineapple garland is one of our most popular products and we have sent it as far afield as Israel.
The pineapple is a symbol of hospitality and welcome which is why it is routinely spied as a door knocker and on welcome mats. Thanks to Christopher Columbus, it is also associated with luxury. Columbus brought the pineapple to Spain from the Caribbean. Because of its rarity and fragility and that fact it was almost two centuries before anyone in Europe worked out how to cultivate it – the pineapple fast became the must have show off fruit at the banquet table and the hostess gift de jour.
Our pineapple cutlery pouch is the way to go when you want to do some easy entertaining. You put the napkin and cutlery in the night before and put the cutlery pouches on the table - table setting done.
The pineapple motif popped up in wood carvings, brass fittings and soft furnishings in stately homes and historic buildings throughout Europe and the more recently in the Americas. King Charles II of England posed for his royal portrait in 1675 while being gifted a pineapple by the Royal Gardener, John Rose.
The pineapple really is a gift fit for a king which is why we have a number of pineapple pieces in our product range. We love the oranges and pinks of the pineapple stationery by Jessica Leigh – scrumptious pineapple posters, pineapple greeting cards and pineapple gift tags.
We have a white textured pineapple garland for a breezy coastal chic look and we shamelessly re purpose our glitter garland as a gift tag when we are looking for a bit of extra pop.
So you can guess what gift tag we are going to use to wrap these fabulous little earrings we spied recently…….
Guess the quest for fabulous pineapples will continue a little while yet.