10 Gifts For HER Under R200

10 Gifts For HER Under R200

Stuck for some classy gift ideas? With Christmas only a couple of weeks away we searched high and low to find 10 beautiful items, all under R200, that would make gorgeous Christmas gifts for a special lady in your life…be it your mom, girlfriend, BFF or boss lady. Truth be told, there is a good couple of items on this list that is on my own Christmas wishlist!

And if you are scratching your head for gift ideas for your dad, brother or boyfriend – fear not – we will post our 10 Gifts for HIM Under R200 later in the week.

Enjoy and happy Christmas shopping!

10 Gifts For HER Under R200

 

10 Gifts For HER Under R200

Shopping List:

1. Pretty scented candle in an antiqued glass jar with lid from H&M – only R149

2. Every girl needs a statement jewellery piece – this gorgeous oversized oval mint stone ring with foil-effect from Woolworths will do the trick. – only R99.95

3. Not only does this floral soap gift set smell amazing, the paper wrapping is so beautiful. The set comprises of 3 scented, wrapped soaps – I’ve bought these before and they are lovely. Also from Woolworths – only R99.95

4. Decorative floral designs painted along the border adds an enchanting look to this mango wood photo frame. Also from Woolworths – only R190

5. I adore this dainty rose-coloured coffee cup and saucer with gold detail from H&M – only R149

6. These handcrafted salted caramels in a glass jar with cute copper detail looks delicious. From WoolworthsR129.95

7. With its shimmering gold and inky blue detail, this iPhone / Samsung cover will turn your phone into a stylish accessory. Available online through Superbalist – only R149

8. Is your loved one a DIY girl? This handy jar of furniture & decor paint in blush pink will add a romantic pop of colour to a furniture piece. Available online through Superbalist – only R89

9. This french press has a simple, elegant design with a touch of trendy copper for coffee done with French flair. From @Home – only  R199

10. A cute pink pouch with brass zip from Zana, perfect for stowing your sunglasses or stationery – only R120

Creative SA: Leila Fanner - Artist

Creative SA: Leila Fanner

Earlier in the month we introduced our new blog series, Creative SA. In this series we will regularly feature South African makers.

For our third installment of the Creative SA series, we will be sharing the beautiful artworks of Leila Fanner with you.

Leila is a painter, illustrator and surface pattern designer who works from her studio in the small town of Riebeek West.

creative-sa-artist-leila-fanner-7

Similar to Nicole & The Striped Flamingo, the SA creative we shared with you in our previous post, Leila has had her own part in Design Monarchy’s brand evolution. In fact, it is Leila who designed our beautiful company logo in 2012.

Since we first interviewed her four years ago, Leila has placed greater focus on her fine art works – spending much time with paint brush in hand.

creative-sa-artist-leila-fanner-8

The elements that Rose and I most adore about Leila’s paintings are her bold use of vivid colours in combination with intricate pattern and detail. Her artworks often have a whimsical yet edgy feminine quality with a slight mystical feel.

Leila’s works, while rich in South African flavour, are completely unique. Her striking paintings feature a fresh interpretation on the local imagery and frequently feature South African fauna and flora. Leila also has the rare and remarkable ability to incorporate African elements into her paintings and designs without the usual “Greenmarket Square cheese”.

creative-sa-artist-leila-fanner-1

Leila will be taking part in the “Summertide” group exhibition this Sunday the 4th of December at The Gallery in Riebeek Kasteel.  Also be sure to check out Leila’s Facebook page as she is currently having a studio sale.

We are also very excited to announce that Leila has gifted us with some of her goreous printed product to dole out as give-away prizes to some of our lucky blog readers. We will be posting all the give-away competition details tomorrow, so keep your eyes peeled.

creative-sa-artist-leila-fanner-4

creative-sa-artist-leila-fanner-2

creative-sa-artist-leila-fanner-5

Want to see more of Leila’s gorgeous artwork? Pop over to her website. Our international friends can purchase her prints and products on Society6.

You can also follow Leila Fanner on FacebookInstagramTwitter.
Fairy Caravan - Fairy Dolls | via The Design Tabloid

Creative SA: Fairy Caravan

Last week we introduced our new blog series, Creative SA. In this series we will regularly feature South African makers. To kick off our very first Creative SA post we chatted with Capetonian illustrator, crafter, and design entrepreneur Liesl van der Hoven. Liesl is the owner of Fairy Caravan and makes stunning handcrafted toys and décor. 

Since we first interviewed her in 2014, Liesl has truly found her passion and niche which is evident in her growing range of delightfully whimsical handmade dolls. These are no toss-them-later Barbie dolls – they are future keepsakes – each unique in their own way and beautifully made…

Fairy Caravan - Fairy Dolls | via The Design Tabloid

Q:  Tell us a little more about your pillow friends. I believe that each animal friend has his or her own story?

A:  The sleepy pillow friends initially started with the idea of creating an animal character to depict each of the four temperaments from ancient Greek theory. I wanted to create characters with distinctly different personalities, because I have found that knowing the personality of each character makes it easier to write stories about them. They almost become “real” in my mind when I’m thinking about them, and I know how they will react in different situations.

I chose the four temperaments simply because four felt like a manageable number of different personalities to start with. I have since expanded on the idea when making the four different dolls and fairy dolls. For instance when I was doing research for creating the fairy dolls, I also discovered that each of the four temperaments correspond to the four elements Air, Fire, Water and Earth. I brought the colours of these elements into the illustrations I did for each fairy’s fabric banner.

Fairy Caravan - Animal Friends | via The Design Tabloid

Q:  You have recently added a few more friends to the fold; can you introduce us to the new additions?

A:  With pleasure! 2016 has been a BIG year in terms of new characters. I started the year by adding three more sleepy animals to the collection. 2015 saw the addition of Kiki the Klipspringer, and this year I also added Fantine Fox, Dana the Dassie and Cara the Caracal. So now there are a total of 8 sleepy animal friends.

In July I introduced three sleeping fairy babies. These are simple little baby dolls available in two different sizes – they look like little babies swaddled in leaves and flower petals. I have been wanting to make a simpler doll since making the larger dolls in 2015 – so very little girls could play with them. They also look lovely as hanging decorations –  each fairy baby has a ribbon loop at the tip of their hat from which they can hang.

I then developed the idea of my dolls a little further, turning them into fairies complete with wings. They are still called Daisy, Poppy, Violet and Lily, just like the bigger dolls, but now they are a little smaller and they are dressed in leaves and petals – and of course they have wings! (I have a story all planned out about how the dolls got turned into fairies which I will share at a later stage.)

Lastly I added a magical unicorn. Ever since making the first dolls I have become fascinated with the possibilities of making two-dimensional illustrations come to life as “real” three-dimensional characters. So I challenged myself with this one. I learned an enormous amount in the process of designing and creating this character.

It’s strange that it didn’t feel like I was being overly ambitious with how many new characters I was creating this year, but looking back on it all now… It feels like I need to go lie down and take a nap!

Fairy Caravan - Fairy Dolls | via The Design Tabloid

Q:  Tell us a bit more about your gorgeous and whimsical handmade dolls. A lot of work must have gone into their creation…

A:  Yes, designing and creating the dolls was a huge amount of work, and it still takes a whole day to create a single doll, as each one is made by hand. But it is SO worth it! I love making them and I am blessed to slowly be building a team of ladies who are helping me to bring these characters to life.

I think that it is important that we teach our children the value of quality handmade goods even when they are very young. We are living in a world that is completely flooded with mass-produced things, and this is definitely true for the toy market as well. Some plastic toys can even be harmful for children, as they release chemicals and gasses over time.

I do an enormous amount of research before I start making anything – from the details of which expression would be best for the dolls to have (neutral is best to stimulate creative play) to the safety of the fabric printing process and inks I make use of. I do this because I believe that there are plenty of people who share my philosophy of putting more thought into what we give our children to play with and what the impact of the making of these products have on society and the environment.

Fairy Caravan - Handmade Dolls | via The Design Tabloid

Q:  I believe you have even designed a pretty range of clothes for the dolls?

A:  To be honest, I did not enjoy designing the doll clothes very much! I realised in the process of designing the clothing patterns that I am first and foremost an illustrator, and that I LOVE sewing and making my characters come alive. There is magic in turning and stuffing a little doll or creature that you have made and watching it come to life.

But teeny tiny little clothes – not so much. I think there is probably scope here to someday collaborate with a fashion designer – someone who loves clothes and designing them a lot more than I do!

Fairy Caravan - Fairy Babies | via The Design Tabloid

Q:  Your fairy babies are ABSOLUTELY adorable. How did they come to be?

A: Thank you very much – I’m so glad you find them adorable! As I mentioned earlier, I basically got the idea of creating a simple baby doll almost as soon as I had made the first, larger Fairy Caravan dolls in 2015. I then put the idea on the backburner while I developed more story ideas. I knew that I wanted the stories to go into a more magical, fairytale-like direction, and I wanted to bring fairies into the story.

So while all of the story ideas were rattling around in my head, I one day realised that the simple baby doll should be a fairy baby! And even though the dolls are fairly simple so that they would be completely safe for a toddler to play with, they had to be beautiful and interesting enough so that even adults would fall in love with them!

I put a lot of detail into the illustrations of these babies and I added interest and dimension with the loose leaf swaddling on the front and by adding a leaf hat.

Fairy Caravan - Unicorn Doll | via The Design Tabloid

Q:  I see that you have penned a cute collection of bedtime stories on your website…

A: The stories are a very important part of what I do. They are my way of adding value to the characters that I create, and also a way to give something back to everyone – whether you have bought something from me or not. I want everyone – and especially as many children as possible, to share in the joy of having a bedtime story read to them, and getting lost in a magical, innocent world.

I have made a promise that I will always continue to share free stories on my website. The story writing has been a bit slow this year because I was creating so many new characters, but I feel that next year my focus will shift to telling more stories.

Fairy Caravan - Handmade Fairy Doll | via The Design Tabloid

Q:  Stories AND beautifully illustrated characters – have you thought about publishing your own children’s book?

A: I have, and it is definitely part of my big plan for 2017. My husband actually made me promise to start focusing on the stories more next year after I completed the unicorn! I agree with him that the time for more stories are perfect now that I have such a large collection of characters about which I can tell stories.

I also want to make more time for illustration next year – bedtime stories need to have beautiful pictures that go with them!

Fairy Caravan - Handmade Fairy Doll | via The Design Tabloid

Q:  What is next for Fairy Caravan?

A: I am working on a big plan for 2017 to make my dolls and toys more accessible and affordable to more people – and I am not thinking about having anything mass-produced!

The plan is still in the early stages of being hatched, but it involves lots of new stories, there are going to be story videos (little movies featuring my characters) and all kinds of exciting things happening!

At the same time I am working on expanding my team of seamstresses so that we can continue to make each product by hand, but also supply in a growing demand for the toys and dolls.

There is definitely going to be fewer new characters in 2017, but I know myself – I won’t be able to resist coming up with at least one or two…

Be sure to check out more of Fairy Caravan’s gorgeous products on their website. Our international friends can purchase her beautiful dolls on Etsy.

You can also follow Fairy Caravan on Facebook, Instagram & Pinterest.

Block & Chisel: Behind the Scenes

When you walk into a retail decorating outlet such as Block & Chisel (in our case Cape Town) or any other shop that sells quality furniture, I have to wonder how many of us stop to appreciate the “behind the scenes” activities that has gone into each piece of furniture on that shop floor.

Generally, we only deal with what we see in front of us and mostly we remain unaware of the journey that some pieces have taken, from conception of the design, through production, to what you see in front of you.  I guess shopping for anything rarely requires such awareness, be it a fashion item, household item or anything for that matter. We may well be more appreciative of price points, if we did in fact shop with more awareness.

Today however, I want to share with you via this video of Block & Chisel – what happens behind the scenes in a furniture manufacturing company. Over the course of my long career in this trade, while working for furniture manufacturers, I have often been privileged to spend time on the factory floor. There is a scene in the video of a craftsman running his hands over the wooden piece.  It took me right back to my short lived term of working for Pierre Cronje. I recall standing watching him and those craftsmen ply their trade with such tender passion for wood, and the craft.  I hope you pick up on the beauty of these craftsman’s applied skills – all respect to those who work their craft behind the scenes.

“Live Life Beautifully” – add something special into your space.

P.S. Just a quick FYI… This is not a sponsored post. In fact none of our posts are sponsored. We share this and others because they add value to our appreciation of interior elements.

 

Get The Look: Industrial Home Bar

Get This Look: Industrial Home Bar

By Marica

Get The Look: Industrial Home Bar

After last month’s Trend Alert post about black metal we thought to put together a little “Get The Look” article featuring a prominent black metal item just to illustrate how edgy and striking this interior trend is.

I found this super cool and beautifully styled industrial setup on Stylizimo. It is from the gorgeous Scandinavian home of blogger, artist and all round interior design enthusiast, Nina Holst. Nina created this space to serve as additional storage in her dining area. I took one look at the metal cabinet and the glasses inside it and thought: “that would make one sleek sexy Industrial-style bar cabinet for your home!” Just add decanters and wine bottles on top of the cabinet and store all you glasses and cocktail making goodies inside. 

Making this Industrial-styled bar cabinet scene your own is quite easy. Here is the furniture and décor items you will need to achieve this look:

GET THIS LOOK:

1. This large elegant glass bell jar with wooden base can be a beautiful decorative feature – just place a succulent or small ornament inside.  |  {where to buy: @Home}

2. I adore this broody portrait of “Mrs Mia Wallace” by talented Londen-based illustrator Ruben Ireland. It can be purchased online – either framed or unframed – but I would definitely go for a gorgeous black box frame.  |  {where to buy: Superbalist}

3. This edgy fine art print of an original watercolour skull by artist Jessica Rowe will add the trendy focal point needed to make this space unforgettable.  |  {where to buy: Superbalist}

4. The monochromatic setup needs a bit of greenery to break the monotony. A succulent is a good low-maintenance choice. Although plastic greenery is definitely second prize, those with who struggle to keep anything green alive can opt for a artificial plant like this one. At least the paint-dipped concrete planter is pretty cool!  |  {where to buy: Mr Price Home}

5. The most important element in achieving this interior look is the striking black metal industrial cabinet. I could not believe my luck when I found something similar locally!  |  {where to buy: @Home}

6. ADD THIS: Glass terrariums are all the rage! This beautiful diamond-shaped terrarium with its lead-trimmed glass panes will fit this industrial home bar scene like a glove.  |  {where to buy: Down2Earth}

7. If you want to add a bit of understated glitz to your bar cabinet, exchange the white tray for this gold one. Remember trays are excellent tools to create successful decor vignettes or to keep your clutter organised. Pop your collection of liquor bottles and decanters on the tray to take this drinks cabinet to the next level.  |  {where to buy: H&M}

 

Amazingly Fun Bedding Your Kid Will Love

Astronaut Bedding by Snurk
The Astronaut

A lifesaving hero, a beautiful princess, a brave astronaut, or a graceful ballerina – what youngster hasn’t dreamt of becoming one of those? I know when I was a little kid I desperately wanted to be a ballerina (tutus – hello!)… well, it was either that or a forest fairy.

That is why I was immediately taken with the realistic yet playful bedding designed by SNURK, a Dutch company based in Amsterdam.  They have put together a range of gorgeous whimsical duvet cover sets that feature life-sized photographic prints of children’s dream counterparts – from a pirate to a soccer player.

The bedding makes the dream a reality. When your little one is firmly tucked in, with his or her head resting on the printed pillow, they are magically transformed into their fantasy alter ego. It is a splendid way to dress up your child’s bedroom and encourage imaginative play at the same time.

SNURK’s co-founder Peggy van Neer describes their design style as sleek and realistic with a fun twist. Their kids designs are poles apart from anything the current children’s bedding market has to offer, which in Peggy’s own words, is “very loud and Disney-dominated”.

It seems SNURK takes the business of being playful very “seriously”. The images they’ve used on their bedding designs were not sourced from some generic stock website. Nope. The astronaut suit, for instance, is not from the costume rental shop around the corner, but from the Space Expo Museum in Holland. For the Ballerina duvet cover SNURK collaborated with the Dutch National Ballet – one of the top 5 ballet companies of the world.

I love the idea that your choice doesn’t necessarily have to be so gender specific. If your little girl wants to be a fire-fighter instead of a princess – more power to her.

The best news of all? The SNURK bedding range is now available in South Africa! Check out the Robert Thomson website for more info.

P.S. They even have double and queen sized duvet sets for all you big “kids” out there.

Cute Children's Bedding by Snurk (6)
The Ballerina
Cute Children's Bedding by Snurk (2)
The Firefighter
Cute Children's Bedding by Snurk (1)
The Princess
Cute Children's Bedding by Snurk (5)
The Pirate