June Favourites 2016

June has been filled with lovely things and wonderful experiences. I always feel really grateful when I come to write my favourites and Instalife posts, as it gives me a chance to review the month past. Here’s a look at what I’ve been enjoying in June.

I joined some planner groups on Facebook to connect with fellow stationery geeks. There are often giveaways and RAKs (Random Acts of Kindness) and I was lucky enough to receive this rainbow fauxdori from Lilac and Dot. It’s my first traveller’s notebook, so I’ll be sure to update you on how I set it up after my inserts have arrived! Key an eye on Natalia’s shop to see these added in the near future – the fabric is all hand dyed and they are expertly sewn! Rainbow-Fauxdori-Travellers-Notebook

Continuing the stationery theme (I’m so predictable), I purchased the planner box from Mrs Brimbles which I absolutely loved! The stationery subscription boxes are themed each month and include Anna’s artwork as well as lovely tapes, pens and charms. They are available as one-off boxes or recurring subs too.Mrs-Brimbles-Planner-Stationery-Box

I’ve really been enjoying the platinum rose Webster’s Pages planner since I moved in. I use it as my day-to-day planner which includes appointments, to dos, finances, health and lists. Each week I’m sharing my pages on Instagram using #Claireabellemakesplanner.Claireabellemakes-Planner-Decoration

Peony season is always a favourite for me at this time of the year! The soft papery petals are so pretty and I’m thrilled to be working with Bloom and Wild to share their letterbox flowers on social media. This bouquet was called The Belle.Peonies

If you’d like to try them out you can get £10 off your first order using this link.Peonies-and-Roses-Bloom-and-Wild

Enamel pins are still a strong favourite of mine and my collection is growing! It feels proper nostalgic to be collecting pins again and there are so many good designs out there.Enamel-Pin-Collection-Claireabellemakes

This month I added the Veronica Dearly pins shown below, as well as the blue Blogtacular one on the left which makes me laugh. I’ve also ordered some biscuit pins from Nikki McWilliams which I can’t wait to share!
Veronica-Dearly-Enamel-Pins

This one isn’t technically a June favourite as I’ve been meaning to share for a while. I made this crochet manatee for a friend’s birthday a while back and it was tough to give him away! When I visited Florida with my friend Vik we actually swam with manatees, so it was a nod to that as well as being a super cute gift.Crochet-Manatee

I don’t know why it took me so long to get a set, but I’ve been loving Travel Scrabble! The tiles are teeny, but they are held in place by raised sections of the board, making it really suitable for playing on the go.

Travel-Scrabble

I always include my favourite experiences of the month in these posts and there have been a ton in June!! Last week G and I had a date night at a retro computer games night which was a lot of fun. We played loads of games that we hadn’t played since the 80s and ended up sending pictures to my sister with “remember this?!” and “OMG James Pond!”

Of course Blogtacular was a massive highlight this month, mostly because I got to hang out with my creative besties.  Some of the swag I picked up is shown below – keep an eye of for the launch of Fred and Bell if you are a planner sticker geek like me!Blogtacular-Swag

Lastly, I was really grateful for a break this month. We managed to catch the sunshine in Southwold and enjoy a few days glamping near the coast. If you haven’t seen my post about the trip, you can catch up here.Pastel-Beach-Huts-Southwold

Thanks for letting me share my favourites today! Tell me what you’ve been loving this month….especially if it is enamel pins I need to add to my collection 😉

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*Some pages on this site may contain links to outside sites, including paid affiliates. Read more about my disclosure policy here.

May Favourites 2016

May passed by in a bit of a blur, but there were some great moments. My favourites post always starts with the best experience of the month which was definitely a spa day and dinner date with G. I must make more time for him – he’s truly the most patient person when it comes to how much I am working at the moment.

Despite many work days, I managed to combine those with brunches – definitely the best meal of any day. This beautiful french toast is from the delicious Romano’s Kitchen menu at Novi Cambridge. I shared brunch this day with an exciting collaborator, so watch this space for news of a new product soon!

Baked-By-Romanos-Brunch

Continuing the food theme, I also took a sushi class with my pal Jo as part of the Eat Cambridge festival and I was so proud of my efforts! We ate tons!

Sushi-Making-Class

More food favourites were green juices (this one has asparagus in!) and these Nakd Nibbles which taste sooo good. I feel like this post just highlights how much I’ve eaten this month, but I promise I’ve tried to be good!

Healthy-Food-Favourites

This month I was so thrilled to partner with a new brand for the blog and social, Bloom and Wild. Their letterbox flowers are seriously beautiful and as I write this post my studio is filled with the scent of the Belle bouquet shown below. The peonies are opening up now. Bloom&Wild-Belle-Bouquet

Peonies-Glitter-Jar

I love the dark pink peonies in the Eloise bouquet too. They matched my studio colour scheme perfectly!

Peonies-Claireabellemakes-Studio Dark-Pink-Peonies

It was amazing how the sun bleached them into a pale colour too. It was like having two different bouquets.

If you fancy trying out Bloom & Wild, they have given me £10 coupons to share with you all! Just click this link to grab yourself a bunch of gorgeous flowers.

Sun-Bleached-PeoniesMy beauty favourites this month were the Soap & Glory Instant Sunkissed Tint Body Lotion (so easy to apply) and the Garnier Micellar Cleansing Water which is so refreshing and pretty affordable too.

Claireabellemakes-Beauty-Faves-May

As you know, I often support other small businesses when I can and this month I started reviewing the Super+Super crochet e-course. I’m loving the yarn so far and will post my progress over on Instagram.

Super+Super-Crochet-e-course

Samantha from Fantastic Crafty Fox has recently opened her Etsy store which is filled with gorgeous sewn pouches, tote bags and more! I picked up a couple of items including a leatherette pouch which I used as a clutch at a wedding this weekend. The lining is a pretty blossom print cotton.

Bags-Fantastic-Crafty-Fox

Leatherette-Pouch

I was lucky enough to get some fabulous gifts this month including this AMAZING chocolate bar from The Happy Mail and a custom laser cut cat pin from my good friend Jo. I was so touched!!! Check out her amazing laser cut jewellery range here.

Handmade-Gifts-Chocolate-and-Pins

I added to my pin collection this month with a Good Vibes pin from Oh No Rachio and this cute Maker Pin from Elen Angharad. It reminds me of school pins that we used to have for being prefect!

Enamel-Pin-Designs

I have to mention the first ever copy of 91 Magazine which came out this month too. Full of wonderful interiors inspiration and it’s so great to see some fellow bloggers contributing.

91-Magazine

So quite a mixed bag this month, but don’t worry I haven’t forgotten stationery! I’m absolutely loving my new platinum rose Webster’s Pages Colour Crush planner. See my full review in my latest Planner Geek Out post here.

Platinum-Rose-Colour-Crush-Planner

Thanks for letting me share today!

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*Some pages on this site may contain links to outside sites, including paid affiliates. Read more about my disclosure policy here.

April Favourites 2016

I’m back after an unplanned (short) break from blogging. I HATE not blogging or being productive, but after fainting and banging my head last weekend I had to rest up for a few days and do absolutely nothing. It was pretty scary as it brought on a crazy migraine with visual disturbances and all sorts, but I’m pleased to be on the mend now.

One thing I did want to mention that was so helpful to me this month was the Migraine World Summit. It’s aonline event which I would recommend to anyone who is trying to learn more about current and upcoming treatments for headaches and migraines. Even though I’ve suffered for 20 years, I learnt so much and feel like I have some hope again.

So anyway, I’m a little delayed with my April Favourites, but here are a few things I’ve been loving this last month. The first thing I mention is always an experience I’ve enjoyed and hands down it was the knitting workshop I attended at Purl Alpaca. I had the best day. I’m working on a full blog post about it so stay tuned, but in the meantime here are some CUTE ALPACAS FOR YOUR EYES.

Sitting-AlpacasIn the most predictable fashion, some stationery appears in my favourites this month. Unwrap Colour released some amazing copper washi tape selections that I had to snap up for planner purposes of course.

Copper-Washi-Tape

Online haberdashers Sew Crafty have recently expanded their craft ranges to include stationery! I picked up some Paper Poetry washi tape and sticker sets as I couldn’t resist the watermelon and pineapple themes. I’m already using them in my planner so don’t forget to check my Instagram to see my weekly layouts.

Paper-Poetry-Washi-Tape-Stickers

I made some new washi tape storage in the studio as I wanted all the rolls on display rather than in a big heap that I had to trawl through each time. I grabbed a wooden dowel from the hardware store and attached it to my pegboard with some hooks. It also gives me a finite amount of space now so hopefully I wont overspend! No promises because y’know, stationery addiction.

Washi-Tape-Storage-Pegboard

Colouring books are always my faves as you may know from this post so I picked up this beautiful one from Emma Margaret Illustration. The Positive Thoughts colouring book has some great images to colour and lifts your spirits at the same time. We’re going glamping next month so I think I’ll take it then as we are going to switch off completely. DIGITAL DETOX HERE I COME (how on earth will I not Snapchat though?!).

Positive-Thoughts-Colouring-Book

I picked up this glitter jar in John Lewis which I decided to use for pencils on my newly tidy desk and stationery corner. My love for glitter isn’t diminishing anytime soon.

Glitter-Jar-For-PencilsStationery-Supplies-Claireabellemakes-Studio

Continuing the gold theme I picked up this Kate Spade Gold Dot Travel Cup to have tea in at the day job.

Kate-Spade-Gold-Dot-Thermal-Mug

After successfully keeping a succulent alive at the day job (I’m a serial plant killer), I decided to pick up a mini cactus and this marbled clay planter from Papur Shop on Etsy.
Marbled-Clay-Planter

I’ve been enjoy a number of different craft supplies this month but the best has to be Liquid Leaf Metallic Gilding Paint because I’m clearly having a gold and copper moment! I have been practising some brush lettering with it in my sketchbook which I know isn’t perfect, but it’s good fun to try. I love the freedom of a sketchbook as I can dip in and out of it when I please, with no agenda or strict theme.

Brush-Lettering-Gold-Guilding-Paint

Another favourite for April was definitely the Lucky Dip Club Breakfast Box. Having just turned 2, Lucky Dip Club is going from strength to strength and supports different designers each month giving it such a community feel. Leona is definitely the most inspiring girl boss around.Lucky-Dip-Club-Breakfast-Box

Each box has an enamel pin to collect – this month it was a fruit loops pin!Fruit-Loops-Cereal-Enamel-PinThe Girl Planet zine is always my favourite part of each box. It was great to see Kim Lawler sharing a day in the life and my friend Sarah sharing a vegan french toast recipe.
Girl-Planet-Zine-Lucky-Dip-Club Girl-Planet-Zine-Recipes-Lucky-Dip-Club

I finally tidied the studio a little more and have a few more boxes to hold another Instagram Craft Sale soon. I hung my new tassel banner which I got from this shop on Etsy.
Claireabellemakes-Studio-Flowers-and-Tea

They say April showers brings May flowers. I was lucky enough to be given two bunches of flowers from friends this month. Yellow tulips are just the cheeriest bloom!
Yellow-Tulips

Continuing the flower theme I also wanted to mention some fundraising my friend Leanne is doing for the Stroke Association’s Make May Purple campaign. Her Dad sadly suffered two strokes earlier this year and she is making these crochet flowers to raise awareness and money. If you have a moment, please read Leanne’s post here and donate if you can. If not, at least click through to the link that educates about recognising stroke symptoms – it’s something everyone should know.

Make-May-Purple-Stroke-Association

I also binged watch the 2nd season of Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt on Netflix and watched Carpool Karaoke on repeat on YouTube – I’m obsessed with the Elton John one. What have you enjoyed this last month?

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*Some pages on this site may contain links to outside sites, including paid affiliates. Read more about my disclosure policy here.

March Favourites 2016

Already time for another monthly favourites post! I always start with the best experience of the month and in March it had to be our trip to Edinburgh. Time off and getting away is definitely something I want to do more of – we want to create as many memories as possible!

In terms of things, this month has had lots of lovely favourites. Two of them were created by my wonderful pal Jo who runs Hello Sunshine. Jo has released the cutest bunny collection for Spring and kindly gifted me one of her bunny pins!

Hello-Sunshine-Bunny-Pin

Jo is an awesome illustrator and also gave me a drawing of my bicycle Florence. It’s bloody brilliant! I need to find a nice frame so I can pop it up on the wall in the studio. Having Jo around in Cambridge (she moved from Nottingham last year) has been so ace and I’m definitely counting her as one of my favourites too. Bicycle-Illustration-Hello-Sunshine

Isn’t it just like my photo?
DIY-Tassel-Bike-Basket

I also added to my pin collection this month with these two enamel beauties from Finest Imaginary. I blinkin’ love the glittery one.Finest-Imaginary-Enamel-Pins

Nutmeg and Arlo recently opened a shop on Etsy and after spotting their cute Narwhal enamel pin on Instagram, I had to grab one. My pin addiction is in full swing!Narwhal-Enamel-Pin-Nutmeg-And-Arlo

I’ve also been wearing my own designs all month – the TEA and bicycle pins look pretty cute together don’t you think?Tea-And-Bicycle-Pins-Claireabellemakes

I’ve also been LOVING glitter this month. I needed a new case for my laptop and found this one and a glittery phone case on the Skinny Dip website. And like my glitter heart pins, they don’t shed, hurrah!
Glitter-Laptop-Phone-Case-Skinny-Dip

After the death of my swedish hasbeen clogs and having no luck with 5 different shoe menders, I decided to try out a pair of Lotta from Stockholm clogs. So far the leather is way softer in comparison and I’m loving the aubergine colour. Now all I need is warmer weather. Although I am totally into wearing these with socks too!Lotta-From-Stockholm-Clogs

I usually like to include a ‘beauty’ favourite or some toiletries I’ve been loving. Now don’t judge me, but I tried Poo Pourri after hearing so much about it and not really believing it was a real product. 

Basically you spray it into the toilet bowl before you go and it eliminates any unpleasant odours. This feels like a SUPER weird product to include in a monthly favourites, but it really works! I think it is quite popular in the USA but I am hoping it will soon be available in our drug stores so I don’t have to have it in my Amazon history for much longer hehe! Poo-Pourri-Spray

Moving on! I’m really enjoying colouring books again this month for a little relaxation. I’m trying to add more downtime activities in my schedule so as well as acupuncture, I’ll be trying to attend some yoga classes.
Colouring

This month I also invested some business money into this nifty suitcase storage to transport items to craft markets and craft parties. The We R Memory Keepers 360 Crafters Bag is almost like a Mary Poppins bag in that you can fit SO MUCH into it. It has a super amount of pockets, wheels that spin 360 and a cup holder. Because all crafters need tea. 

We-Are-Memory-Keepers-360-Crafters-Bag

Quite a random mix of favourites this month! Anything you’ve been loving that I should be checking out?

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*Some pages on this site may contain links to outside sites, including paid affiliates. Read more about my disclosure policy here.

February Favourites 2016

I promise this month’s favourites post isn’t all about pens. But be warned it does feature a lot of pens. In a bid to normalise my stationery addiction and to not appear so materialistic, I always like to share an experience or something from my surroundings that I’ve enjoyed this month. In February, the snowdrops returned to our garden and covered the lawn. We are not keen on gardening, so seeing a wild flower appear with no effort at all is really quite pleasing.

Snowdrops

Despite spending £200 on the dentist in February (wah!), I also had to fork out for a new laptop, so it turned out to be an expensive month. Hence my Instagram sale! I am absolutely loving the laptop I chose as it weighs 1.2 kg and is really responsive. I’ve really been enjoying getting organised with that and also using my planner to stay motivated.

Claireabellemakes-Desk-SpaceI managed to do some crafting outside of blog and contributor projects this month, which has been so nice. I worked on The New Craft House English Paper Piecing cushion kit and was reminded how relaxing hand sewing is. They’ve just released a couple more kits which look fab!

The-New-Craft-House-EPP-Kit

Now for the pens I’ve been loving! First up, is this rainbow pack of Paper Mate Flair Fibre Tip Pens. These are great for colouring, writing cards and gift tags and generally just lining up in a rainbow. Or is it just me that does that?! #penweirdo

Papermate-Flair-Pens

Gel pens from kikki.K will always have a place in my heart. Especially as they have so many different designs!kikk.K-Gel-Pens

Their latest metallic gel pens feel really luxurious. I had to get the gold and copper pens. I think they go with my We Make Collective DIY Shibori notebook so well.Mixed-Metallic-Pens-kikki.K

At the end of January I managed to nab a Nikki McWilliams biscuit cushion in her seconds sale. How cute is this Fondant Fancy cushion? It reminds me of when I used to visit my Nan and she would always feed us these little cakes with a glass of lemonade. Fondant-Fancy-Cushion

Tammy likes it too. Biscuit-Cushion-Nikki-McWilliams

Unfortunately this month has not been great for my migraine head so I’ve tried to rest and take some self care time. I am a fan of ear candling for relaxing and found that Holland and Barrett have different scents. Ear-Candles

I am pleased to get my Lucky Dip Club box every month (subscriber since day one!) and February’s Galentines box was all kinds of super. The illustrators and designer makers that Leona chooses to work with are always so inspiring.

Lucky-Dip-Club-Galentines-Box

My favourite part of the box is the zine which is edited by Zabby Allen. I’m super excited to be sharing a DIY tutorial in the March box as the theme is Bunnyland! I may have continued the glitter projects for this one, so take a look at Lucky Dip Club’s website if you fancy nabbing a box!Girl-Planet-Zine

Lastly, I am announcing my devotion to the enamel pin trend that is well and truly back. It feels super nostalgic and oh so 90s to be collecting pins again. Most of mine are cat and stationery themed.

Enamel-Pin-Collection

Did you spot the sneak peek of a new product there too? NOT SO SUBTLE HINT!

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*Some pages on this site may contain links to outside sites, including paid affiliates. Read more about my disclosure policy here.