27 Nov 2015

Get 33% Off Dizzy Miss James This Black Friday

Want to grab a bargain then why not head over to www.dizzymissjames.co.uk there's a third off all my screen printed items.

That's 33% off all Tote Bags, Prints and Screen Printed Cushions!

TODAY ONLY

I hope you have a super smashing great Friday peeps!


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24 Nov 2015

Cheerz - La Boite A Photos

I've been looking for a way of recording my business journey for a while now so when Cheerz contacted me and asked if I'd like to try their product I jumped at the chance! Their cute photos were perfect for displaying my business processes over the years in a fun and quirky way. After looking at the site I was instantly was drawn towards their * La Botie A Photos and they were kind enough to send me some to try out. I ordered via the Cheerz App on my iPad which was really easy to use. You choose your photos, customise them with cropping, filters and a choice of adding your own personal text. The photos are then printed in France and are shipped to you within a few days.
I was super excited when I received my package and was completely thrilled to open it up and find this adorable box. 

The delightful little box contained:

  • 40 glossy square prints each (10x10cm)
  • 24 photo corners to stick up your prints
  • 5m coloured twine
  • Colourful washi tape
  • A fabric pouch full of mini pegs
  • 2 decorative envelopes

All I needed to do now was create and display my memories.
I used the twine and the teeny tiny mini pegs to hold my photos in place, the final result looks super cute in my studio and is exactly what I hoped for! I also got some personal photos printed and gifted them to my parents and to a dear friend in the envelopes provided. I am going to use the washi tape to fix some significant photos above my computer for a bit of extra daily motivation. 

The La Boite A Photos would make a great gift for a love one for their birthday, wedding, anniversary, sharing a wonderful memory, recording a beautiful moment or just to keep for yourself.


You can also order your own Cheerz Box and get £4 off with my referral code: VICKGD

















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13 Nov 2015

Small Business Spotlight - Super Cute Box

Today's Small Business Spotlight shines on Super Cute Box a monthly subscription box full to the brim with cuteness, kawaii and super loveliness. I asked the lady behind the brand Sam some questions about SCB and running her own business.


Q1: How did you come up with the idea for Super Cute Box? I used to have a jewellery shop on etsy with handmade products, so I have always loved handmade jewellery and supporting small businesses. When I finally got pregnant, I couldn't work but needed to so I decided to reopen my shop on its own website. It didn't do as well as through etsy so this gave me the chance to try something new. I stumbled across a subscription box and thought what an amazing idea, I hadn't really heard of them apart from Graze. I've always been into cute stationery and trinkets etc, with a baby on the way I had decided to get rid of a lot of my stuff to make room. Combining my love of cute things and handmade jewellery I decided to start up Super Cute Box! I already had a Web host, it didn't take me long to put the site together and it definitely fills that part of me who didn't want to give up all her cute stationery and things! I also love supporting small business's who just want to get their name out there!


Q2: Do you run your business full or part-time? 

It's a full time job, I am heavily involved, we are due to expand in 2016 and allow more subscribers each month.

Q3:What does an average day look like for you?

It's very different now I have a 2 month old girl! But from a work perspective it involves admin in the morning and stock buying. Then the majority of the day is either designing, crafting or updating the website/social media. Around 20th is when it gets busy, as these days are creating and packing the boxes ready for the 25th despatch date.  


Q4: What are your interests outside of SCB?

My family are the most important thing to me, I spend all my time with my husband and daughter. I enjoy gaming, formula one, films and reading! 

Q5:How do you keep yourself motivated?

I love my job! Seeing happy subscribers is the best feeling ever and enough to motivate me.

Q6: Do you have any advice for anyone wanting to set up their own business?

Definitely, don't give up! Get your name out there however you can, social media, contact bloggers, send flyers to conventions, get a table at a craft market or convention. I started my jewellery in 2011 so it can take a few years before you find your niche but keep at it! 


Above the lovely Sam who I was lucky enough to collaborate with on the sold out October Box and designed a super cute black cat pocket mirror. If your a fan of subscription boxes or just general cuteness I would highly recommend Super Cute Box!







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10 Oct 2015

Intu Metrocentre VIP Fashion Live Event

On the evening of Wednesday 7th October I was invited to attend the Intu Metrocentre VIP Autumn / Winter Fashion Show Live alongside other North East Bloggers and Press. We were greeted by the fabulous House of Fraser who took us in store to enjoy a splendid spread of delicious canap├ęs and of course there was a steady stream of bubbles flowing. House of Fraser began a refurbishment in July this year and is due to be completed on Thursday 12th November 2015. There will be 20 new brands on offer including Michael Kors, Lauren by Ralph Lauren and Whistles I can't wait!


After an introduction by the delightful Steve Clarke the Store Manager of House of Fraser we embarked on a guided tour of their Beauty Hall. Here you will find a one stop shop for all  your important pampering needs and all the essentials you could possible ask for, for getting ready for that big night out.  With SHOW blow dry bar, Nails Inc nail bar, Estee Lauder 10 minute beauty bar and Decleor...what more does a gal need!


We then headed out to our reserved seats to enjoy the fashion show. Here the catwalk showcased this seasons autumnal trends for both men, woman and children. The Fashion shows will be running until Sunday 11th October so why not get yourself along.


Intu Metrocentre have collaborated with textile designer Celia Bitwell to produce an exclusive print for their A/W 2015. The design combines two of the seasons must have colours in one exclusive design and I was lucky enough receive a tote bag printed in this bold colourful pattern. If you spend £50 or more in one transaction on Intu Gift Cards between 8th-Saturday 31st October you could get your very own Celia Bitwell/Intu tote bag (while stocks last). 




On each of our seats along side the Celia Bitwell tote was a Goodie Bag. Below is just a selection of the magnificent products that the generous House of Fraser gifted us in the bags. A collection of beauty and hair products that I can't wait to try! I have penciled in a 'me day' especially to try out these lovelies.


Most importantly I got to hang out with these ladies from left to right  Laura - Look At My Clothes, Rhian - Chapter And Circle, Laura - Off The Hanger Etc and me!

(photo by Rhian as all the ones I took I was pulling an awful face)

Thank you Intu Metrocentre and House of Fraser for a fantastic evening!






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8 Oct 2015

The Plastic Bag Charge

This week the plastic bag charge was introduced to England. As someone who advocates the use of reusable eco-friendly bags for shopping I feel very strongly on this issue. This is why I started designing and selling canvas tote bags several years ago. The number of plastic bags is reaching an all time high, single use plastic bags are unsustainable and have a huge cost to the environment.

While I welcome the charge I have seen a lot in the media about why we should pay. People say they do not mind paying for bags if it means they are helping the environment. However the charge is actually in place to discourage you from using any form of plastic bag for the purpose of carrying your shopping. 


What is needed is a cultural shift in the way we shop. Our grandparents never had this issue, with paper and reusable bags being all they knew. Try to invest in a good quality multi-use bag that will last for years and will easily biodegrade when the time comes. I personally only use very sturdy heavy-duty canvas bags with sides and gussets. They are strong and large enough to carry a family shop. Once you make the shift to reusable tote bags it is hard not to get addicted, I take mine everywhere!


What are your thoughts on the charge? 






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6 Oct 2015

Festival of Thrift 2015

On September 26th and 27th I attended one of my favourite events of the year The Festival of Thrift 2015. The Festival of thrift is a celebration of sustainable living and all things thrifty and ethical. This was to be my second year trading and I couldn't wait!  My journey there however was not plain sailing. 

On Saturday morning I was up with the larks the car was all packed and after checking and rechecking my list I began my journey and headed off to Lingfield Point in Darlington. About 5 minuets in I hit the motorway and the car broke down! I couldn't believe it I had put in weeks of preparation, making, creating and planning and I was about to miss the festival! After a call to the AA and the awesome guys at Hodgson Garage sorting out a courtesy car, I made it to Festival an hour and a half late but I made it!

And what a Festival it was!

Above is my stall with Dizzy Miss James.
My stall buddy to my right Vintage Owl and her vintage inspired gifts and homeware
And to my left I was lucky enough to be pitched next to I Use 2 Be with her up-cycled loveliness
Further along my section was the fantastic Martha & Me.
And the very talented local designer Fiona Fawcett of Plewsy.

The weekend was amazing there was such a great atmosphere with live music and entertainment throughout the day. And most importantly it was great to meet my customers both regular and shiny new ones. My stall was crazy busy both Saturday and Sunday which was fantastic but unfortunately meant that I didn't get to see the full delight wonder and fabulousness of The Festival of Thrift for myself.


Will you be visiting next year?



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6 Sep 2015

Being Veggie And Growing Your Own

I've been veggie since I was 8 years old, since I figured out where meat came from it never felt right for me to eat it. And even though I was young I knew exactly what I wanted to do and that was choose a life of vegetarianism. I'm not going to lye my Dad was not happy with my decision at the time after all I was only 8. He thought it was just a phase and would pass with time. Now over 20 years later its part of who I am, I don't think about it and although its not for everyone I believe its a healthier lifestyle. And my Dad he turned a complete 360 and is proud that I have stuck to my beliefs.

Its much more accepted and easier these days than 20 years ago. At school when I told them I was veggie they would hand me a plate full of fish.. Now in shops you can find shelves full of meat free alternatives and whole sections on restaurant menus dedicated to that of a vegetarian lifestyle.

I've always liked to know where my food comes from, what it's made of  and what impact it has on the environment. I try to source as much as I can locally and show my support by buying from small independent business but getting everything you need can be hard. As a result I decided to grow my own, well as much as I could in my small yarden.
I started a few years ago with herbs such as thyme and rosemary then I began to get more pots to fill with seeds and bulbs. My small yard is now full to the brim and this year I had a fantastic crop of salad leaves, tomatoes, peas, garlic, spring onions, chillies and much more. Its so rewarding and exciting to watch them grow and they taste delicious!

Do any of you guys grow your own? any advice or tips would be much appreciated!





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3 Sep 2015

1 Year Of Shop @ The Mushroom Works

The Mushroom Works situated in Ouseburn Valley, Newcastle Upon Tyne is a gallery and collective of working studios occupied by a diverse range of professional artists and crafts people. This time last year they opened their doors to the public to showcase the wares of the artists and makers housed within and that of their creative friends. Back in September 2014 Shop @ was born and a year on it's still going strong.

The original idea to open up a monthly shop came about as an additional event to have alongside the annual Ouseburn Open Studios and The Late Shows. This allowed Mushroom Works to reach customers on a more frequent basis, work as a collective of independent designer/makers and encourage people to shop local and see what goes on behind the scenes of a working studio.

Quirky handmade cookware and ceramics from Muddy fingers pottery

Held on the first Saturday of each month the shop hosts a selection of vibrant unique quality handmade gifts, furniture and accessories from artists and designers such as Muddy fingers pottery , Nick James, Joanne Wishart, and creative friends Cube Root Jewellery, Applique Originals and of course Dizzy Miss James.

Designer lamp bases by  Nick James each with colourful fun lampshades.
A stunning previously sold necklace by Cube Root Jewellery

 
 The ever popular Beer o'clock, Wine o'clock and Gin o'clock by  Nick James. Which time would you choose?
Bright bold and beautifully hand sewn accessorises by Applique Originals
Coastal loveliness by  Joanne Wishart available as prints, card and coasters.

With a range of products of all sizes, shapes and colours and prices between £1 - £100 there is something to suit every style and budget. If you've visited before be sure to check them out again as there will be shiny new fresh products available for you to take home.

Why not pop along have a look for yourself and show your support for independent artists and makers..

Happy 1st Anniversary Shop@!






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28 Aug 2015

The Body Shop Spa Of The World Collection

I was invited by the Body Shop in the Metro Centre to attend a blogger event to introduce me their new Spa Of The World Collection inspired by beauty rituals across the globe. I was met by the lovely Jess their skincare specialist who was kind enough to talk me through the new products their benefits and absolutely gorgeous smells. I was then given a fantastic relaxing hand massage to experience and feel the benefits of these products for myself. My skin was left smooth glowing and smelling divine!
I would highly recommend the luxurious Dead Sea Salt Scrub it left my skin so soft subtle and actually felt like it was getting rid of dry skin unlike a lot of other products I have used recently. Whether you need to realx be revitalised or just want a blissful pamper session they have something for you. The Spa of The World Collection is a great way to get that 'I've just been to a spa' feeling but from the comfort of your own home, there's no need to make an appointment and its a fraction of the cost so why not treat yourself you deserve it..

Have a great Bank Holiday Weekend and remember to pamper yourself!





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