Tuesday, 30 June 2015

Handmade gift of the week: Light bulb Terrariums

This is one handmade gift idea that's made it to the top of my 'wish list' - who wouldn't love receiving one of these little bulbs of joy?

Image from www.coco29.com 

Why we love it:
  • They look simple to make, and inexpensive with limited materials: bulb, plant, growing medium and string. A word of caution though, choose your bulb carefully. You want a good quality one that doesn't look like it's going to crumble in your hand as you're working with it. We would also recommend wearing a pair of gloves to protect your hand when handling the glass, in case it shatters. 
  • Who doesn't love plants? This would be a great gift for anyone - men, women, children. You can select your plant and growing medium to suit your recipient. Plain white Perlite or little rocks would be suitable for an adult, but maybe brightly coloured stones and the inclusion of a little toy, like a fairy would make this magic for a child. 
  • You could make a few and cluster them together, like a living mobile in your home or children's bedroom. This takes the concept of hanging plants to the next level!
  • Terrariums have made a revival lately, so this is a very 'on trend' gift and home decorating idea. 

Where would you hang one of these in your home? 
We'd love your thoughts - please comment below...

Monday, 29 June 2015

PRODUCT OF THE WEEK: Kinuya Japan Blue Leather

There are wallets, and then there are wallets. This selection of handmade leather accessories from Japanese brand, Kinuya have a special story behind them...

Kinuya Japan Blue Leather accessories

Why we love Kinuya:
  • The unique blue colour of the leather used for these high-quality accessories is created by dying it with the leaves from the indigo plant (indigofera polygonum). 
  • This dying process, known as "Ai-zome" has been used in Japan since the 5th century.
  • This natural dying process eliminates the need for the use of many chemicals used in leather dying and finishing processes. 
  • Each piece in the Kinuya range is handmade in Japan from high quality leather. 
  • Kinuya's products can be easily identified by their embossed family crest - a small rabbit.
  • Mr Gift is the exclusive retailer of the Kinuya brand in Australia. 
Kinuya products are:
  • Great gifts for men (or women) who have discerning taste and appreciate high-quality leather accessories
  • Great gifts for the person with everything 
  • Great birthday/anniversary gift

Saturday, 27 June 2015

Card of the week: Envelopes on a string

Many people shudder when they think of making a card by hand, but this cute little card is an excellent example of how easy it can be...especially since you can now buy packs of pre-made plain cards from craft shops and discount stores...

You could replace the envelopes with any shapes or letters on the string of this handmade card...
Image from www.nobiggie.net

Why we love it:
These little envelopes look so cute suspended from the twine, but you could use any shape - hearts, or letters to spell a message or someone's name
The plain kraft card really sets of the colours used on this card. 
The handwritten text, "A little note" gives the card a personalised feel - especially when so many things are printed these days. 

What was the last handmade card you received? We'd love your thoughts - please comment below...

Wednesday, 24 June 2015

Gift wrapping idea of the week: Toys + gift wrap = FUN!

People often say that little kids have more fun with the box and the wrapping paper that their gift came in, than the gift itself. That would definitely be the case if they received a gift wrapped like this...
Colourful and creative - just the way gift wrapping should be

Why we love this:
  • You're limited only by your imagination of what you could use here. Check out the toy section of your local variety store for ideas and remember the toys don't have to be expensive. 
  • The best type of wrapping paper to use here is the plain, inexpensive stuff - that way the toys stand out. 
  • Any dodgy wrapping techniques will be quickly overlooked when you add your "toy". 
  • This idea can be extended to adults too - why not use some funky drink coasters for a men's gift, or hair accessories for a female gift.  

What "toys" or accessories would you use? We'd love your thoughts - please comment below...

Tuesday, 23 June 2015

Handmade gift of the week: DIY Frozen Fruit and Flower Ice Bucket

A bottle of wine is a popular gift that many people will appreciate. However, the trick to gifting a memorable bottle of wine (apart from buying a wine that tastes good) lies in the way it's presented. This handmade ice bucket would be a wonderful host/hostess gift for a party during the warmer months...

Image from www.ehow.com

Why we love it:
  • It's easy and inexpensive to make - you just need to allow a little time between each step for the ice to freeze. Here are the instructions on how to make it. 
  • You can choose any combination of flowers, herbs, fruit, or anything else you think will freeze. You could use bright, contrasting colours, or tonal pastel colours, depending on the occasion. 
  • This makes an impressive (and practical) table centre-piece. Imagine this on your Christmas table with gorgeous Christmas colours. If you've got time, you could even make two or three to hold different bottles of wine. 
  • You can make any sized bucket - even one to hold multiple bottles. The only limitations are the buckets you have available, and the size of your freezer!

What flowers and fruit would you use in your bucket? 
We'd love your thoughts, please comment below...

Sunday, 21 June 2015

Handmade gift of the week: How to use old books

There is an abundance of second hand books at markets and in charity shops these days. The good news is that even the ones that aren't best sellers can be put to good use - and not by reading them. Here are a couple of crafty ways to turn the pages of old books into a unique handmade gift that your recipient will treasure forever...

These cute hearts would make a great card too

These delicate butterflies would make a delicate artwork for a little girl's bedroom

Why we love these:
  • These artworks are stylish and timeless
  • This is a great way to recycle old books, or even newspapers
  • You can customise and personalise each artwork, depending on the shapes and colours you choose.
  • Experiment with different coloured/shaped frames - white, black, natural wood, bold red, etc. 
  • How beautiful would these creations look as gift cards and gift tags? The options are endless and limited only by your imagination!

Who would you make one of these artworks for? 
We'd love your thoughts - please comment below...

Saturday, 20 June 2015

Card of the week: Balloon Birthday Card

You can't help but smile when you see the cheerful colours of the balloons on this card and the best thing is that this design is so versatile you could use if for any occasion. 

Why we love it:
  • Who wouldn't love receiving a cheery, colourful card like this?
  • This card has broad appeal and would suit men, women and children
  • You could adapt this card for any occasion - birthday, anniversary, engagement, new baby, etc. Just change your message to suit. 
  • Your choices are unlimited when it comes to materials and colours. The balloons on this card are bright, plain colours, but you could source printed paper and use tonal colours for a completely different look. 
  • It has a 3D effect - the balloons and their strings are like a collage and give this card a beautiful tactile quality - you can't help but want to touch it. 

Friday, 19 June 2015

20% OFF STOCKTAKE SALE - Grab your discount code below...

Mr Gift Logo
Can you believe we've reached the half-way mark of 2015?

Chances are you've got a few more birthday, wedding, anniversary, housewarming, and thank you gifts you'll need before the year is out.

We hope we can make your gift purchasing experience convenient (and cheaper) with some great ideas at great prices in our store-wide sale.

So go on, make a list and let us help you tick some things off your gift list today...

store-wide until midnight 30 June 2015. 

This is a VIP sale offer, only available to those 'in the know'. To redeem your discount, enter coupon code STOCKTAKE in the 'Discount Code' field when you place your order. Please note that this offer can't be used in conjunction with any other offers.

PS: You can forward this email onto family and friends so they can enjoy this discount too.

PPS: Notice something different? Our website has had a make-over - we'd love your feedback on our new look!

Best Wishes,
Courtney and the Mr Gift Team

Gadget Gifts on sale

My Music Mini Speaker
Essential 15 piece tool set
Troika Multi-Function Tool
Call Keyring
Hessian Tool Roll
Big Rootcup
Water from a stone plant waterer
Seed Box
Bacon Rules Poster
Ceramic Measuring Jug
Joseph Joseph Shell Digital Scale
Slate Cheese Tray
Gentlemen's Hardware Wash Bag
YMMN Black Leather Wallet
Drinking Arm Cufflinks
Baileys Show Cleaning Kits
Jonathan Adler Jet Set Coasters
Sophisti-Case Globus
Rosanna Reina Porcelain Tray
Troika Black Carbon Pen
Work Darts Set
Made By Humans Eco Stapler
Labrador Small Leather Bag
Classic Cocktails Poster
Suck UK Bottle Light
Gentlemen's Hardware Cocktail Shaker
Troika Smart Guide Compass
Camo Army Toilet Bag
Credit Card Night Light

Thursday, 18 June 2015

Today is...Splurge day!

If you're ready to go on a shopping spree, demolish a whole pack of biscuits or get up to any other type of indulgent mischief, then today is your day! Throw your "all in moderation" 
caution to the wind and cut loose, because it's SPLURGE DAY! 

How are you going to indulge today? 
We'd love your thoughts - please comment below...

Thursday Thought...

Wednesday, 17 June 2015

Peppa Pig birthday cake

Like many three-year-olds, Little Miss Gift is obsessed with Peppa Pig. She would spend hours absorbed watching it on TV, if I let her. So it was no surprise when we were planning her third birthday afternoon tea that Peppa Pig was her theme of choice. 

I wasn't sure how I was going to create a birthday cake in the shape of Peppa Pig. So I opted for a simple round-shaped birthday cake (two slabs of cake, sandwiched with butter cream icing to keep it moist) and focused on decorating it with a Peppa theme. 

I have never done cake decorating, so wasn't confident I could make sugar Peppa Pig figurines, but then I had the idea of incorporating some of the Birthday Girl's presents into the cake. I had bought some plastic Peppa Pig figurines that I thought would be fun to pop on the cake. When the cake ceremony was done she would have some new little friends to play with. 

This idea worked a treat and Little Miss Gift was thrilled. 

Other cake components included:

  • White fondant icing (left over from my son's birthday cake, but rolled dangerously thin - I don't think you can get two cakes out of one pack of icing!) covering a Funfetti-flavoured cake.
  • Pink marshmellows cut in half and dipped in Hundred and Thousands sprinkles
  • Birthday candles purchased from local discount store 
  • White and silver organza "Happy Birthday" ribbon around the base of the cake (to cover where the fondant finishes) and add to the birthday theme. And yes, this is the same ribbon I used on my son's cake;-)
Tip: I used toothpicks to support/hold the figurines in place as Mummy and Daddy pig were quite heavy!

Check out more cake ideas here...

What sort of birthday cakes do your kids like? 
We'd love your thoughts - please comment below...

Sunday, 14 June 2015

Saturday, 13 June 2015

Cool Cakes: Tyre cake

This cake looks so realistic I'm not sure if I'd actually like to eat it! However, this would be a pretty cool cake for a car enthusiast. The level of detail alone in the tyre tread is super impressive, which is why this one made it onto our cake of the week list...

Image from www.oddee.com

Why we love it:

  • You've got to appreciate the level of detail and craftmanship here
  • This would get a tick of approval from car enthusiasts
Check out more cake ideas here...

Friday, 12 June 2015

Card of the week: Washi tape card

Washi tape is everywhere at the moment. What is washi tape you ask? Washi tape is a type of Japanese decorative masking tape that has become particularly trendy in the craft world over the last couple of years. Scrapbookers love it, and so do we - especially when it's used to make cute cards like this...

Image from www.washitapecrafts.com

Why we love it:
1. Washi tape is available in every colour and pattern that you could imagine, but we love the combination of these masculine blues and greens to make a striking men's card. 
2. This is one of the cheapest and quickest ways of making a handmade card that we have seen - especially if you can find a stamp with the greeting message you want like the above example. 
3. Washi tape is now widely available in craft stores - in fact I saw some in my local $2 shop the other day, so it's easy to source. 

Have you used Washi tape before? We'd love your thoughts - please comment below...