A global field guide to design, (life)style and secret finds
est. 2007

Archive: Dec 2012

  1. Happy New Year!

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    Happy New Year via WeeBirdy.com

    Happy New Year, dear birdies! I really do hope 2013 is a brilliantly good one. Thanks so much for popping in and joining me in the Wee Birdy nest in 2012. Can’t wait to bring you more lovely goodness – and a brand new look – in 2013. xxx

    Happy New Year via WeeBirdy.com

    Happy New Year via WeeBirdy.com

    Happy New Year via WeeBirdy.com
    How wonderful is this New Year’s creative concept, art direction and photography by Argentinian art studio, Plenty? via Typography Served.

  2. Happy Christmas from Wee Birdy!

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    Wee Birdy Christmas Tree via WeeBirdy.com

    Wishing all my super-lovely readers every happiness at Christmas. Thank you so much for stopping and making Wee Birdy what it is today. I’ve really loved expanding the Wee Birdy community on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook and meeting so many of you over the year.

    I’m having a wee festive break with my family but I’ll see you all in the New Year. In the meantime, you’ll find me on Facebook, Twitter and especially Instagram, posting all my holiday pics. I’d love to see and hear about all of your Christmas festivities as well.

    Please join me in Instagram and #ShowMeYourTree! It’s easy – here’s how to do it:

    1. Head over to Instagram.
    2. Take a photo of your Christmas Tree.
    3. Upload your tree on Instagram and use the hashtag #showmeyourtree and tag @weebirdy.

    Can’t wait to see your tree! Here’s mine (see top)!

    Merriest of merries, everyone! X

    Photography by Lucas Boyd.

  3. A wee Christmas recipe: My Raspberry Cream Macaroon dessert

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    Christmas Recipe: Raspberry, cream and macaroon dessert via WeeBirdy.com

    This, my dearest birdies, is my favourite Christmas dessert. It’s the perfect way to end a too-stuffed-to-eat-another-mouthful-Christmas-dinner, as it’s relatively light (well, depending on how much you eat) and the raspberries offer an edge to the sweetness of the macaroons and cream.

    I don’t really use a “recipe” as such (apart from the coconut macaroon bit) because it’s dead simple – and the amounts used depend on how big your trifle bowl is.

    If you want the cheat’s version, use shop-bought coconut macaroons. You’ll be laughing at how dead-simple it is to put together, not to mention the ‘big effort’, maximum-impact results.

    Now I’m not talking about French macarons of the Laduree variety, I mean rough coconut macaroons that are crispy and toasty on the outside with a deliciously gooey meringue-y centre. I like to make my own, but be careful not to overcook them as you won’t get the gooey/sticky/toasty/crunchy texture that makes this recipe so lovely.

    Ingredients

    • Freshly whipped cream (I use two cartons of whipping cream, but you may need more or less, depending on how big your bowl is).
    • Raspberries (I use a mixture of fresh and frozen. I use one whole box of frozen raspberries, together with four punnets of fresh raspberries. It’s really nice to decorate the top of the dessert with a layer of fresh raspberries.)
    • Crushed coconut macaroons – either shop-bought or make them yourself, recipe below. Just pop them in a plastic bag and whack them with a rolling pin/mallet/other handy whackable object. Don’t smash them to smithereens – you don’t want a crumb-like texture. More of a mixture of crumbs and little chunks.

    Method

    1. Place a layer of crushed coconut macaroons (around an inch high) in the bottom of your glass trifle dish.
    2. Usually a spatula, place a layer of freshly whipped cream (around an inch high) on top of the macaroons.
    3. Now place a layer of raspberries on top of the cream.
    4. Repeat the layers until you get to the top of the trifle bowl.
    5. Finish with a layer of whipped cream and decorate with fresh raspberries. Either throw your raspberries on free-form or go for a retro design of concentric circles.
    6. Keep chilled until you’re ready to serve, then dust it with icing sugar (don’t do what I did last year in a fit of Christmas-induced madness and toss a heap of castor sugar on top. I misread the label. Not nice. Gritty. Oh dear.)
    7. Wow your guests – they’ll love it!

    Dead-Easy Raspberry Cream Macaroon dessert via WeeBirdy.com

    Coconut Macaroon Recipe (the non-cheat’s version)

    Ingredients

    • 3 cups of shredded coconut
    • 4 egg whites, at room temperature
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 3/4 cup of caster sugar
    • 2 teaspoons of vanilla essence

    Method
    1. Preheat oven to 170 degrees celcius. Line three baking trays with non-stick baking paper. Spread the shredded coconut over two of the trays and cook in the oven, tossing occasionally for three to four minutes until lightly toasted. For the love of god keep an eye on it and don’t let it burn! Remove from the oven and transfer to a plate. Your kitchen will now smell divine!
    2. Whisk the egg whites and salt together with electric beaters in a scrupulously clean, dry bowl until soft peaks form. Make sure you don’t have a speck of grease on your bowl or mixers or your meringue won’t work.
    3. Once you have soft peaks, add sugar a spoonful at a time. Go slow and steady here! Look at the mixture carefully and make sure all the sugar has dissolved before adding the next spoonful of sugar.
    Once all the sugar has been added, whisk for a further two minutes or until your mixture is thick and glossy.
    4. Add the vanilla essence and whisk to combine.
    5. Add the toasted coconut and use a large metal spoon to carefully fold it in until just combined. (Use a bit of TLC here. If you overdo this bit or stir too vigorously, your macaroons will be flat.)
    6. Spoon tablespoonful of mixture onto lined trays. Leave around 2cm between each macaroon. Bake in the oven, swapping trays halfway through cooking, for 12-15 minutes or until your macaroons are light golden and firm.
    7. Leave them to cool for five minutes on the trays before transferring them to wire racks to cool completely.
    8. Store in an airtight container for up to two days before you need them.

    Photography by Lucas Boyd.

    Do you think you’ll have a go at making my dessert this year? What’s your all-time favourite Christmas dessert?

    You might also like Likkle Girl’s Rummy Balls.

  4. 7 Beautiful DIY Christmas Decorations

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    Crafttuts+ Snow Globe Tutorial via WeeBirdy.com

    It’s less than a week ’til Christmas, but there is still plenty of time to get hands-on and make some really special and unique decorations for your place. I’ve gathered together seven gorgeous Christmas projects from Crafttuts+, the awesome new craft tutorials website (which I also happen to edit – quick, pop over there now and check it out!).

    These crafts are all rather special and unique and they’re made by some of the world’s best designer-makers and crafters, including Kitiya Palaskas, Laura Howard (of Lupin Handmade) and Helen Frances (from Frances and Francis). Here are my top seven:

    1. Snowglobe Winter Wonderland in Jam Jar by Helen Frances of Frances and Francis (pictured above). Click here for the full Crafttuts+ tutorial.

    Crafttuts+ Christmas Pinatas Tutorial via WeeBirdy.com

    2. Mini Christmas Piñatas by Kitiya Palaskas (above). Click here for the full Crafttuts+ tutorial.

    Crafttuts+ Space Invaders Christmas Decorations Tutorial via WeeBirdy.com

    3. Space Invaders Christmas Ornaments by Cintia of My Poppet (pictured above). Click here for the full Crafttuts+ tutorial.

    Crafttuts+ Felt Christmas Stocking Tutorial via WeeBirdy.com

    4. Felt Christmas Stocking by Laura Howard of Lupin Handmade (pictured above). Click here for the full Crafttuts+ tutorial.

    Crafttuts+ Christmas Wreath and Garland Tutorial via WeeBirdy.com

    5. Fabric Christmas Wreath and Garland by Eleanna Kotsikou of zdrop (pictured above). Click here for the full Crafttuts+ tutorial.

    Crafttuts+ Christmas Himmeli Decorations Tutorial via WeeBirdy.com

    6. Geo Himmeli Christmas Ornaments by Eleanna Kotsikou of zdrop (pictured above). Click here for the full Crafttuts+ tutorial.

    Crafttuts+ Christmas Paper Lantern Village Tutorial via WeeBirdy.com

    7. Bethlehem Paper Lantern Decorations by Helen Frances of Frances and Francis (pictured above). Click here for the full Crafttuts+ tutorial.

    And you can also craft your own unique Christmas wrapping, as well. Click here for 10 Quick and Colourful Gift Wrap Ideas by Kitiya Palaskas.

    Craftutts+ DIY Christmas Wrap Tutorial via WeeBirdy.com

    Craftutts+ DIY Christmas Wrap Tutorial via WeeBirdy.com

    Craftutts+ DIY Christmas Wrap Tutorial via WeeBirdy.com

    Click here more amazing projects and tutorials from Crafttuts+.

    Need some lovely present inspiration? Click here for all my Christmas 2012 Gift Guides.

    Prefer to buy all handmade? Click here for my Etsy 2012 Christmas Gift Guides.

    And don’t miss my Top 20 Christmas Crackers and my Top 20 Christmas Stockings!

  5. Christmas Gift Guide 2012: Amazing presents for kids

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    Christmas Gift Guide 2012: Kids Presents via WeeBirdy.com

    Stuck for original and charming present ideas for the little ones? I’ve scoured the globe for the most amazing gifts for kids, starting at $10.

    1. The Magic Tree House, AU$179 from Lark.

    2. Tsumiki house, EUR91 from The Space Penguin.

    3. Antique rose ballet bounce skirt by Collette Dinnigan For The Australian Ballet,  AU$39 Target.

    4. Kiko machi wood+magnet town, EUR32 from The Space Penguin.

    5. Little Roar Head by Flatout Frankie, AU$35 from Hello Polly.

    6. Rain Littlephant art print by Camilla Lundsten, AU$36 from Hello Polly.

    7. Nathalie Lete Friends magnet set, £22 from Niddle Noddle.

    Christmas Gift Guide 2012: Kids Presents via WeeBirdy.com

    8. Coq en Pate giraffe shoulder bag, AU$33.95 from My Messy Room.

    9. Rock Your Baby ‘Masked Crusader’ blue t-shirt with detachable cape, AU$35 from My Messy Room.

    10. Flensted Elephant Party mobile, AU$30 from Great Dane Furniture.

    11. Maze the ark ducky hook, AU$31 from Funkis.

    12. Nathalie Lete Sailor Tin bucket by Nathalie Lete, £8 from Niddle Noddle.

    13. Kids Company Dodgy Panda knitted hooded scarf, £45 from Liberty.

    14. Plastic Clonette Doll with Rabbit in dark blue, AU$10 from Lark.

    Christmas Gift Guide: Kids Presents via WeeBirdy.com

    15. Theatre “ESPAÑOL” (to assemble), EUR22 from Teatritos.

    16. Rock Your Baby ‘Eat My Dust’ board shorts, AU$39.95 from My Messy Room.

    17. OMM Design Tiger Plate, AU$12.95 from My Messy Room.

    18. Bear jacquard knit green jumper by Tootsa MacGinty, £31 from Burp Boutique.

    19. Djeco magician pencil trick book, £13 from Liberty.

    20. Blink Design colours wall art , AU$60 from My Messy Room.

    Christmas Gift Guide 2012: Presents for Kids via WeeBirdy.com

    21. The Game of Sculpture, £7.95 from Culture Label.

    22. Kiko ashiato cat print toy beach sandals, EUR17.60 from The Space Penguin.

    23. Harry Potter Marauder’s Map, £36.95 from Harrods.

    24. A Menotti and Y Labat’s How Many Jellybeans?, AU$24.95 from My Messy Room.

    25. Lion face cushion, AU$29.95 from Lark.

    26. Kiko gatcha gatcha dispenser, EUR39 from The Space Penguin.

    Christmas Gift Guide: Kids Presents via WeeBirdy.com

    27. Best Bead Kit In The World, £11.60 from Cox and Cox.

    28. Animal crayons, £5.20 from Cox and Cox.

    29. Vintage caravan, AU$29.95 from Lark.

    30. Milk n Soda Sailboat Bow Tie in Sky, AU$19.95 from My Messy Room.

    31. Harry Potter Hermione’s Time Turner, £51.95 from Harrods.

    32. Chalkboard Cowboy, £29.50 from Daisy Mooo.

    33. Blafre Giraffe Steel Drink Bottle, AU$24.95 from My Messy Room.

    Want more lovely present inspiration? Click here for all my Christmas 2012 Gift Guides.

    Prefer to buy all handmade? Click here for my Etsy 2012 Christmas Gift Guides.

    And don’t miss my Top 20 Christmas Crackers and my Top 20 Christmas Stockings!

  6. Christmas Gift Guide 2012: Silver and Gold

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    Christmas Gift Guide: Silver and Gold via WeeBirdy.com

    Precious little presents under the Christmas tree are always welcome, but they don’t have to cost the earth – or come from the pages of chain-store jewellery catalogue. Here’s my round-up of some of the best little luxuries for Christmas from around the globe, starting at $36.

    1. Georg Jensen Ilse stainless steel vase, AU$110 from Georg Jensen.

    2. Eclectic candles by Tom Dixon, NZ$135 each from Simon James Design.

    3. Kate Spade icebox jewels emerald coin purse, US$46 from Kate Spade.

    4. 3.1 Phillip Lim silver metallic pointed collar, AU$175.01 from My Wardrobe.

    5. Alex Monroe teeny tiny bumblebee ring, £460 from Alex Monroe.

    6. Measuring hedgies, US$36 from Anthropologie.

    7. Tom Dixon form bowl set, NZ$155 from Simon James Design.

    8. Rococo Nail Apparel gold leaf nail varnish, £35 from Cult Beauty.

    9. T. LeClerc secret powder, £33 from Cult Beauty.

    10. Alex Monroe twig ring, £120 from Alex Monroe.

    11. Vintage cube necklace, US$24 from Sparkle Farm’s Etsy shop.

    12. Georg Jensen Ilse brass candleholder, AU$135 from Georg Jensen.

    13. Golden twig charm, US£16 from Anthropologie.

    14. Belmacz silver swan pure silver eyeshadow, £28 from Cult Beauty.

    15. Hammered band bracelet set, £18 from Anthropologie.

    Want more lovely present inspiration? Click here for all my Christmas 2012 Gift Guides.

    Prefer to buy all handmade? Click here for my Etsy 2012 Christmas Gift Guides.

    And don’t miss my Top 20 Christmas Crackers and my Top 20 Christmas Stockings!

  7. Christmas Gift Guide 2012: Presents for your favourite menfolk

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    Christmas Gift List: Presents for Guys via WeeBirdy.com

    Here are 25 beyond-lovely Christmas presents for all the favourite menfolk in your life:

    1. Mattt iPad mini sleeve in cuisenaire blocks (includes a notebook sleeve prefilled with a Moleskine sketchbook, which also protects the screen), AU$60 from Mattt.

    2. Jonathan Adler horse bottle stopper, £18 from Heals.

    3. Shakespeare Mini booksi Dock for iPhone and iPod, US$50 from Rich Neeley Designs.

    4. Timex Weekender watch in red and blue, £44.99 from Goodhood.

    5. Limited edition Hobbit Moleskine notebooks, $16.95 from Think Geek.

    6. Higonokami penknife, £18 from Toast.

    7. Mattt Melbourne Map travel shoulderbag in grey, AU$185 from Mattt.

    8. Moleskine 2013 Star Wars Large Weekly Planner+Notes (Hard Cover), US $22.95 from Moleskin.

    9. Happy Socks big dot sock, AU$16.95 from Happy Socks.

    10. Super People sunglasses in matt/crystal, £120 from Goodhood.

    11. Set of six sport coasters by Cockpit Arts, £44 from Culture Label.

    12. Ukulele leather iPhone case, AU$52.50 from Follow Store.

    13. Rich Fairhead ‘For Sale’ Star Wars print, AU$40 from Hello Polly.

    14. Refinery shave oil, £25 from Goodhood.

    15. CK One blue stripe flannel pajama pants, £30 from Urban Outfitters.

    16. Nick Bronson red knitted silk tie, £40 from Liberty.

    17. Elephant bottle opener, AU$70 from Georg Jensen.

    18. Clarks Originals walnut suede desert boots, £79 from Urban Outfitters.

    19. Studio Amour square design hand-printed cotton handkerchief, £15 from Soma Gallery.

    20.  Aesop Moroccan neroli shaving serum, £25 from Cult Beauty.

    21. Bike Watching: An Explorer’s Journal, £12.95 from Culture Label.

    22. Stripe flannel pyjama, £69 from Toast.

    23. 22 Design Studio concrete rollerball pen, £45 from the Design Museum.

    24. Pineapple boardie, AU$69.95 from Country Road.

    25. Herschel red Hank wallet, £36 from Urban Outfitters.

    Want more lovely present inspiration? Click here for all my Christmas 2012 Gift Guides.

    Prefer to buy all handmade? Click here for my Etsy 2012 Christmas Gift Guides.

    And don’t miss my Top 20 Christmas Crackers and my Top 20 Christmas Stockings!

  8. Christmas Gift Guide 2012: Presents for mums, sisters and girlfriends

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    Christmas Gift Guide: Presents for mums, sisters and girlfriends

    Finishing your Christmas shopping this weekend? Here’s my edit of the best presents for all the lovely ladies in your life, starting at £8.96. If you spot something you fancy for yourself, just share it on Facebook or Twitter prefaced with a big ‘Hint, hint’!

    1. ‘Dash Dot’ pointy mittens by Donna Wilson, available in three colours
    £32.50, from Soma Gallery.

    2. Aesop Reverence hand wash, £27 from Cult Beauty.

    3. Postie leather envelope, AU$190 from Follow Store.

    4. Dinosaur Designs set of three bangles, AU$215 from Dinosaur Designs.

    5. Polli woven peacock pendant, AU$79.95 from Polli.

    6. India Knight Mutton (hardcover), £8.96 from Amazon.

    7. Paul & Joe Kitty Blusher Stick in Minou, £19 from Rose Apothecary.

    8. Paris Wakefield Additions Bliss cotton satin cushion, £59.50 from Paris Wakefield Additions.

    9. Melinda Young hand cut acrylic flamenco pendant, AU$95 from Collect.

    10. Cadiz serving bowl, £34 from Anthropologie.

    11. Ceramic band bowl XXL, €70 from Foldoys.

    12. Paul and Joe colour powder (081), £19.50 from Rose Apothecary.

    13. Eiffel Tower ring dish, £10 from Anthropologie.

    Want more lovely present inspiration? Click here for all my Christmas 2012 Gift Guides.

    Prefer to buy handmade? Click here for my Etsy 2012 Christmas Gift Guides.

    And don’t miss my Top 20 Christmas Crackers and my Top 20 Christmas Stockings!

  9. A wee chat with Megan Morton

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    Megan Morton Things I Love via WeeBirdy.com

    This is the book that I’ve been excited about for months. And it’s here – at last – and just in time for Christmas. Megan Morton in one of Australia’s leading stylists, but really she’s much more than that – she’s actually pretty amazing. She recently opened The School, offering a super-fresh take on craft workshops (you can learn to make pineapple piñatas, flower bombs and shibori, to name a few) as well as sharing her own creative talents through styling masterclasses.

    The School via WeeBirdy.com

    In her new book, Things I Love, Megan has curated a darn exciting and inspirational collection of homes, people and design she loves, as well as offering a raft of tips and advice. It’s the only book I know that injects warmth and genuine excitement into sharing practical tips such as how to clean a vintage painting, how to mimic the Kate Spade wall, and – my favourite – how to fold a fitted sheet. Naturally, it’s beautifully designed and it’s full of cute features like zip-out postcards and fold-out pages.

    So I thought I’d have a wee chat with Megan about something we both love – SHOPS – and boy, does she spill the goods…

    Megan Morton via WeeBirdy.com

    You’re a such a creative bird, Megan Morton. If you were a bird, what kind of bird would you be?

    A Leila Jeffreys budgie! Have you seen her photographs of Aussie budgies?! Amazing! Standard budgie at first glance but not-so upon further inspection! Her budgies are showing at Tim Olsen gallery at the moment and are hilariously wonderful!

    Leila Jeffreys' Suzi via WeeBirdy.com

    I adore Leila’s birds, too! Especially the cheeky parrots. Congratulations on your fabulous new book, Things I Love. What about shops you love? Can you tell us which shops you love in Sydney?

    La Croix in Kings Cross is a personal favourite because you can spend $6 or $6000 over a coffee. The grey leather banquette with pompoms is enough of a drawcard for me, let alone the glassware, candles, cups and marble kitchen bits all acquired from a medley of sources and countries [see images below].

    La Croix Kings Cross via WeeBirdy.com

    La Croix Kings Cross via WeeBirdy.com

    I love Koskela for their commitment to Australian-made and furniture that is so well made and designed with wit [see image below].

    Koskela via WeeBirdy.com

    I Love You Beads Warehouse in Leichhardt. There are so many hysterical reasons to love this store. I have taken up a hobby making necklaces. They are actually super nice! I go to this shop as it tickles my sense of humour as well as services all my bead fantasies.

    Flour and Stone in  Woolloomooloo for lamingtons and tea served in Beryl ware from classic Brown Betty tea pots [see image below].

    Flour and Stone via WeeBirdy.com

    Fairfax and Roberts
    . Such a decadent and wonderful store experience. I adore jewellery and watching its almost theatrical presence at this store is a wonderful way to tyre-kick/window-shop for all budgets. Shopping for me is not just about nothings, it’s about observing and getting inspiration.

    Dolly Up in Surry Hills is a dangerous place for me to go in the same way Belinda is. I love maxi dresses and Erin at Dolly Up has magnificent ones. I have bought many a vintage Valentino from her. With two daughters I feel like I am doing my bit to give us all some nice vintage options in a shared family closet!

    Although I designed it, I do honestly love the Ecoya candle store on Queen Street [see images from the launch night below]. Moody and devastating, with hand-blown glass scent chambers down one wall and tarnished mirror down the other. A sensory experience in the truest sense of the word.

    Ecoya via WeeBirdy.com

    Ecoya Sydney via WeeBirdy.com

    Ecoya Sydney via WeeBirdy.com

    Plus, any suburban Priceline chemists – it’s like the JB Hi Fi of chemists! High volume, low decoration with lots of useful stuff!  I also like huge warehouse shops too! I love looking basically for things that aren’t expected and challenging myself to find things that are wonderful and not necessarily from predictable places or usual sources.

    Which online shops do you love?
    Rachel Castle for her sunshiny goodness [see images below]; Strawberrynet for cosmetics; Mecca Cosmetica; JCrew for the kids; and I can’t resist looking at the sale section of West Elm. Lu Lu Lucky for her hand-made block-coloured envelopes and other makeables.

    Rachel Castle via WeeBirdy.com

    Top five shops in the world?
    I can’t contain it to five, unfortunately! I love shops and want to share them with as many people as possible so all these clever people can stay trading and thrive as they deserve to!
    1. BHV in Paris – the French alternative to Bunnings although without compare.
    2. Gravel and Gold in San Francisco [see image below]. Almost an anti-store. I love its jewellery, American camp blankets and the way they wrap plants in foil for unusual window displays. Everything here is so well-made and the store has little fanfare as its quality speaks volumes.

    Gravel and Gold in San Francisco via WeeBirdy.com

    3. Arts & Science in Toyko, Japan. Another store that renders me speechless.
    4. Tsé & Tsé Associées in Paris. No words.
    5. The Pirate Store in San Francisco – genius. Sheer genius. Again, no words! Retailing at its highest art form here [see images below].

    The Pirate Store Emergency Burial Sand via WeeBirdy.com

    6. Camargue in Brisbane for its Queensland edit of the European clothes I adore, but edited for summer-wearing and set in a classic, neutral and not overly-designed boutique setting. It lets the clothes do the talking.
    7. First Dibs – the online interiors auction house. The real store is on Lexington in NYC. Totally incredible and it almost makes you woozy!
    8. The Tinsel Trading Co. In New York it’s one of my first stops – I could go there every day for a year and find something in there that I had not seen the day before! Expect trinkets, ribbon, garlands – actually expect none of that – as it’s that kind of place [see images below]!

    Tinsel Trading Co via WeeBirdy.com

    9. March in San Francisco. I don’t have words for how perfect this kitchen/gift/lifestyle shop is. I hate the word “lifestyle” but in March’s case it really is a life I covet. Everything – and I mean everything here is beyond. Utterly beyond.

    March San Francisco via WeeBirdy.com

    It’s almost Christmas and I’m dying to know what you’re doing for a Christmas tree this year.

    I do a year on and a year off – so this year I am blindfolding my family – seriously – and taking them away on a surprise out-of-town Christmas. Just us. No tree. We are packing the kids’ bags without them knowing and I can’t wait to see their faces when we get to our destination!

    I’ve sent a small tree and their gifts up to said destination so it’s going to be a year of surprises. Last year I did a faux tree but highly doused in mercury and silver and pewter decorations and a lunch with all the trimmings, with a day-before-Christmas party!

    Year on/year off works so well for me. It gives you the energy needed to deliver a great Christmas and a rest when you need it! I love all trees and decs – even the bad ones! There is nothing bad about this time of the year, I make no style judgements.

    Megan Morton Christmas via WeeBirdy.com

    This year at our studio we have erected a paper chandelier by Lu Lu Lucky and we are asking people to place wrapped gifts under it along with tins of food they can spare for The Salvation Army. Christmas for me only works when you can shine a kindness light.

    Thank you Megan!

    Click here for a Wee Birdy Sydney map, showing Megan’s favourite shops.

    Things I love by Megan Morton is AU$49.95 and can be found in all nice shops and book stores right now. It would make an amazing Christmas present and you can also buy it online from Booktopia. You can find Megan Morton online right here.

  10. Christmas at home with Wee Birdy

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    Christmas at home with WeeBirdy.com

    It’s Christmas-central here at Wee Birdy, and as most of you know, I adore this time of the year and I’ve always embraced the festive season with great gusto. I’ve loved sharing all my festive wee finds with you over the past few weeks and compiling all my gift guides, but today I thought I’d invite you around to my place and show you how I’ve been getting ready for Christmas.

    And to give me a kick-start, the lovely folks from Freedom gifted me with a voucher to help me deck the halls. Excitement! I really love Freedom and have spent many an hour wandering the aisles of their amazing decorating section, never failing to uncover all sorts of lovely wee finds (and it’s far more extensive in-store than online, which also adds to the excitement factor).

    Christmas dinner table setting via WeeBirdy.com

    I wanted to create a simple but effective table setting for Christmas entertaining this year, using my collection of vintage mercury glass baubles as the inspiration (see photo above). At Freedom I found a beautiful festive silver table runner ($19.95) with a set of four matching silver napkins ($14.95), which added a great textural base for my setting. For dinnerware I used Freedom’s Fino M3 Coupe Dinner Set ($89); a sleek and minimalist everyday set that goes beautifully with my streamlined Georg Jensen AJ cutlery.

    We were in desperate need of new glasses that actually matched, so I bought six Fizzy Highball tumblers (great value at $1.95 each), which provided a textural balance to my collection of Riedel stemware. This was further enhanced by Freedom’s set of three crystal glass tapered candleholders ($29.95). The centrepiece of fresh rosemary in my Georg Jensen Ilse vase added a green festive touch (and smelled great, too), and I decorated the table with nuts and pods in an assortment of George Jensen and Stelton polished stainless steel serving bowls.

    Christmas table setting via WeeBirdy.com

    I also experimented with a splash of colour, swapping the mercury glass ornaments for brightly coloured Quality Street chocolates and my collection of vintage glass Christmas decorations. Which look do you prefer?

    Mini belljar winter wonderlands via WeeBirdy.com

    I love creating little winter wonderland vignettes for my coffee table each year – but with a toddler in the house I’ve moved it to the sideboard! Here I’ve used Freedom’s fabulous glass belljars (Maisey Cake Stand with Dome Lid, 31cm, $14.95 and Maisey Cake Stand with Dome Lid, 33.5cm, $34.95) to make miniature winter forest scenes.

    Miniature winter wonderland via WeeBirdy.com

    I used Maldon salt flakes (the best fake snow) and some tiny vintage Christmas cake decorations and my collection of little woodland deers to create my winter wonderlands. I really love this little tableaux and the glass belljars look great on my antique silver tray.

    Vintage chair with Freedom cushion via WeeBirdy.com

    Our living room colour scheme is usually grey, yellow and white, so I swapped our yellow print cushions for these plump and beautifully textural red “Freeway” cushions from Freedom ($39.95). I think they really bring out the texture of the fabric in my vintage armchairs, and they also match the Scandi red and white knit stockings hanging in our fireplace.

    Freedom Natural caprii tote with handles via WeeBirdy.com

    One of my favourite childhood Christmas traditions was reading our collection of Christmas books (Raymond Briggs’ Father Christmas and Father Christmas Goes on Holiday are my all-time favourites) throughout December.

    I’ve continued the tradition with my son, and I was thrilled to stumble upon Freedom’s natural caprii tote with handles ($89), which is big and sturdy enough to house our growing collection. Best of all, we can use it as handy toy storage after I’ve put away the Christmas books.

    Freedom Sanctuary bath sheets in platinum via WeeBirdy.com

    Christmas always brings a raft of visiting rellies and friends, and as the contents of our linen closet has seen better days, we invested in some smart new guest towels. I bought Freedom’s generously-sized Sanctuary bath sheets (mine are in platinum, $34.95 each), which are super-luxe and perfect for guests.

    Freedom Henson white queen quilt cover via WeeBirdy.com.

    We love entertaining guests on our balcony, but the unfortunate drawback is that you have to walk through our (often dishevelled) bedroom to get to it. So with a plethora of people dropping in over the next few weeks, it was time for a mini bedroom makeover.

    Cue Freedom’s Henson white queen quilt cover set, $149, which features a glorious pin-tuck pattern which not only adds interest and texture to a white duvet cover, but it will never need ironing and always look good – no matter how creased it may be. Genius for time-poor parents! It also goes well with my beloved Rachel Castle yellow polka dot pillowslips, which add a pop of colour to our room.

    Balcony via WeeBirdy.com

    We already had Freedom’s fabulous yellow spindle side table, which goes fabulously with the vintage saucer chairs on our balcony. But we needed some kind of decorating element to tie these disparate pieces together, and I found the solution with Freedom’s Mix n Match red cushion ($29.95) and the matching red Cera citronella candlepot ($16.95). The birds-on-a-wire frame is also from Freedom, and I’ve used it to display our Christmas cards this year.

    Hope you’ve enjoyed this wee festive tour around my place! How are you getting ready for Christmas this year?

    Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post but I was provided with a Freedom Gift Voucher – and of course I went over my budget, which I paid for myself.

    Photography by Lucas Boyd.

  11. Christmas Gift Guide 2012: 30 Presents Under $30 (The Non-Crummy Edition)

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    Christmas Wish List 30 presents under $30 via WeeBirdy.com

    Buying on a budget has never looked better, especially when you’re talking about snapping up great presents for under 30 quid with brand names like Missoni, Stila and iitala. Not to mention the plethora of loveliness that is just waiting to be discovered from some really fabulous online retailers. I’ve scoured the web for the best presents from around the globe – all for under 30 Aussie bucks (or roughly 20 quid for my UK readers).

    1. OMM Design Pablo & Dali Salt and Pepper Shakers, AU$29.95 from My Messy Room.

    2. Vienna medium cosmetic bag, AU$29.95 from Country Road.

    3. Chalkboard pears garden stakes, AU$24.95 from Follow Store.

    4. Yellow collapsible basket, AU$19.95 from Oxfam.

    5. Drum major lavender bag by Ben Javens, £8.50 from Soma Gallery.

    6. All is Bright Lip Glaze Set by Stila Cosmetics, £18.50 from Cult Beauty.

    7. Littlephant Carnival Mug, AU$22 from Hello Polly.

    8. Extra-wide colourful thread bracelet, £8 from the V&A shop.

    9. Moleskine 2013 Le Petit Prince Pocket Daily Planner, US$19.95 from Moleskine.

    Christmas Gift Guide: 30 presents under $30 via WeeBirdy.com10. iittala Kivi tealight, AU$24.95 from Funkis.

    11. Mini Ship in a Bottle, AU$13 from Hello Polly.

    12. Blafre yellow Bambi rectangle box, AU$14.95 from My Messy Room.

    13. Ruth M sugar bowls, €16 form Foldoys.

    14. Set of four letterpressed coasters by New Found Original & Ryan Todd, £8 from Soma Gallery.

    15. Alba tea light, Euro€16 from Foldoys.

    16. Ceramic heart studs by Septembre Vintage, AU$18 from Follow Store.

    17. Wooden garnet brooch in macaroon, AU$29.95 from Polli.

    18. Logo waffle tea towel, AUD$8.95 from Country Road.

    Christmas Gift Guide: 30 presents under $30 via WeeBirdy.com

    19. Missoni Home Niles hand towel, £13 from Amara.

    20. Small mixing bowl in watermelon by Sian Thomas, AU$30 from Follow Store.

    21. Eggling, AU$25 from Freedom Australia.

    22. Mountain 01 Oelwein, AU$25 from Hello Polly.

    23. Small mercury glass diamond votive, £5 from Ben Pentreath.

    24. Groove porcelain vase, AU$19.95 from My Messy Room.

    25. Owl lip balm, £3.75 from the V&A Shop.

    26. Geometric magnet set by Snug Studio, AU $22 from Hello Polly.

    27. Respectable spectacle case by Susiemaroon, AU$15 from Hello Polly.

    28. Crystal heart necklace, £15 from the V&A Shop.

    29. MT masking tape, £13.50 for a pack of five from Ben Pentreath.

    30. White beaded collar necklace, £15 from the V&A Shop.

    Want more lovely present inspiration? Click here for all my Christmas 2012 Gift Guides.

    Prefer to buy handmade? Click here for my Etsy 2012 Christmas Gift Guides.

    And don’t miss my Top 20 Christmas Crackers and my Top 20 Christmas Stockings!

  12. Christmas Gift Guide 2012: The “Me” Edition

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    Wee Birdy Christmas Wishlist via WeeBirdy.com

    So what do I want for Christmas? What would be my ultimate dream wishlist? Here are a few of my favourite things right now.

    I don’t really need anymore STUFF, but I’d love some really, really special things, like a beautiful vase, a fabulous new fuschia lippie, the ultimate take-anywhere black clutch bag, a classic Liberty silk scarf, a statement necklace, some lovely new shower gel and some good holiday books. Add to that tickets to the Australian ballet and a creative workshop and I’m in heaven. A girl’s gotta dream, right?

    1. Dinosaur Designs pink and red spot glass vase, AUD$297 from Dinosaur Designs.

    2. Lola Bensky by Lily Brett, AU$23.95 from Booktopia.

    3. Everything Changes But You by Maggie Alderson, AU$25.45 from Booktopia.

    4. Season tickets to the Australian Ballet, from The Australian Ballet.

    5. Lucy Choi London exclusive black glitter Oslo pointed flat shoes, AU$210 from My Wardrobe.

    6. Korres fig shower gel, AU$22.95, from Kit Cosmetics.

    7. Liberty navy Tree of Life print silk scarf, £135 from Liberty.

    8. Jennifer Loiselle mini Clemence woven necklace in pink and orange, £65 from Jennifer Loiselle’s Etsy shop.

    9. Karen Walker Anytime black with yellow sunglasses, NZ$349 from Karen Walker.

    10. Mulberry Clemmie oversized glossie goat leather clutch, £550 from Selfridges.

    11. Tom Ford private blend lipstick in Flamingo, AU$48.60 from Nordstrom.

    12. Megan Morton’s Science of Styling Class, AU$450 at The School.

    Want more lovely present inspiration? Click here for all my Christmas 2012 Gift Guides.
    Prefer handmade? Click here for my Etsy 2012 Christmas Gift Guides.

    Over to you. What’s on your ultimate dream wishlist?

  13. Christmas Gift Guide 2012: The Birdy Edition

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    Christmas Gift Guide: the Birdy edition

    Some of the best presents around this year have a wee birdy on them – or two. Take a flight of fancy with my Christmas Gift Guide: the birdy edition.

    1. Aesop Flight Gift Set, £40 from Liberty.

    2. Jonathan Adler medium bird bowl, US$88 from Jonathan Adler.

    3. Aviary Poster by Alice Melvin, AU$16 from Hello Polly.

    4. Tatty Devine Magpie Necklace, £57 from Soma Gallery.

    5. Bluebird Pouffe by Eleanor Young, £180 from Howkapow.

    6. Duo Sparrow Key Ring, AU$26.95 from Freedom Australia.

    7. Marc by Marc Jacobs bird flight gold-plated necklace, £150 from Harvey Nichols.

    8. Donna Wilson bone china ‘Birdy Walk Dinner Plate’, £27.50 from Soma Gallery.

    9. Nanoblock blue budgie, NZ$18 from Wocolate.

    10. Dove Door Stopper, AU$18.95 from Freedom Australia.

    11. Bird alarm clock, £35 from Cox and Cox.

    12. MCQ Alexander McQueen hummingbird-print leggings, £165 from Selfridges.

    13. Jonathan Adler blue bird spoon rest, US$38 from Jonathan Adler.

    14. Mark Hearld grey notebook, £9.95 from The Tate Modern.

    Want more lovely present inspiration? Click here for all my Christmas 2012 Gift Guides.
    Prefer handmade? Click here for my Etsy 2012 Christmas Gift Guides.