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I have to admit I unashamedly stole this post’s inspiration from my friends at The Women’s Room Blog because I just love a party decor web-shop.

The Americans do party decor really well, with design doyennes like Martha Stewart and Grace Bonney making crafting and entertaining a national institution. Across the pond, the online landscape is filled with inspiring offers from the likes of BHLDN, department stores like Target and not to mention Etsy’s covetable craft shops.

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The UK on the other hand leaves a lot to be desired with creative shoppers left to cobble together their decorations from uninspiring resources like Ebay and Amazon.

Enter Pea Green Boat a beautifully executed online store founded by friends Tessa and Zoe based in North London.

Drawing on their backgrounds in interior design and film production, their decor collections are fresh, modern and on-trend. Divided into inspiring sections like Decorate, Lay The Table, Gifts, Accessories, Vintage and by curated Theme, covetable products like bunting, cake toppers, giant balloons and table decor are sourced from all over the world and where possible, made in the UK.

Now all I need is an excuse for a party…

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BrakigCollection

This month sees the launch of Ikea’s stunning new limited edition collection BRÅKIG –  a result of a collaboration between IKEA and the creative Danish collective ArtRebels.

The collection comprises of thirty products – clever storage solutions – [my favourite are the sturdy storage boxes in geometric patterns and covetable pastel colours - £7 for a set of two] small sized furniture [super cute table trays retail at £20] to textiles [cushions from £5 and rugs £100 each] and harlequin print china and wallpaper.

Influences from Danish design and a love of Copenhagen are shown in the choice of techniques, materials and design. Natural materials such as plywood and pine are coordinated with misty pastels and sharp, graphic designs.

With a baby on the way in May and a nursery to decorate, I am beyond excited about such an affordable and stylish collection to hand at my local Ikea store… I have already begun to collect the pretty storage boxes and have my eye on the footstools and rugs…

The collection being limited, it doesn’t appear on the Ikea site – maybe it will later this month, but you can read more about BRÅKIG here. Rumours are that the collection will be in store till August but i’m not hanging around!

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PrintClubLondon

Last week I was lucky enough to be invited along to a screen-printing workshop by East London screen print studio Print Club London. Located down an industrial but very trendy back alley in Dalston [aren't they all], Print Club is a members only screen-printing club for illustrators, designers and artists and provides a laid back and super creative environment for anyone who wants to screen-print.

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I’ve never done any screen-printing in my life and have always been totally in awe of those who do, an art-form simultaneously creative and technical. My workshop was for beginners [costing £50 for the day] and introduced our small group to the basics of screen-printing with the aim of getting you up to a standard that allows you to print on your own in their studios. The workshop takes you through every stage from the history of screen-printing; from art working, exposing your screens and printing your image. By the end of the workshop you will produce an A4 image, approximately 6 copies.

PrintClub

It was a super relaxed environment and I felt like I was back at art school again. Our two very cool teachers Craig and Marco took us through the steps to achieve our desired print.

We were all asked to bring a piece of artwork on a USB stick which was projected it onto a large computer and we were shown how to sharpen the image for the best result for printing [beware of leaving any other material on the USB. I was left very red faced when large scale photos of myself posing with my pregnancy bump for my grandmother were projected up on screen!!!]. The correct image was then printed onto tracing paper. We spent the morning being taught the history and science behind screen-printing and exposing our screens in a dark room to burn our image onto the screen. Your image transferred onto the screen was really exciting to see!

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After a lunch-break we spent a fun afternoon in teams getting messy and printing our designs. I was really worried about what to bring along to the workshop but drew a family tree the night before in anticipation of our baby [due in May] with the intention of inserting passport size pictures of family into the spaces.

I thoroughly recommend the class as a gift to a friend or just a new experience to share – it honestly felt so rewarding to learn a new skill and I left feeling inspired and very proud of myself! You can check out various Print Club London workshops here and membership options here

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Amsterdam

Rifle Paper Co. is one of my favourite stationery brands. I really love San Francisco illustrator Anna Bond’s vintage style and use of colours, but after buying and giving away every possible variation of greeting card of hers for the last few years, it feels like it’s about time I should have something a little more permanent.

Lucky for me the brand has recently begun producing art prints of their most popular designs, but the ones I think are especially beautiful and encapsulate the magic of Bond’s signature charming style are her new City prints. Depicting naive maps and landmarks of capitol cities around the world, each one has the idealised dreaminess of holiday memories.

From $40 I think they would all make perfect souvenirs from your travels.

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Debuting at this year’s National Stationery Show in New York, Brooklyn based studio Frances Lab showed a striking collection of vintage inspired cards play australian pokies online. Combining collage and monochrome prints, their style is super simple but out of the ordinary. Check out their new store here.

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