TOP 5… Cactus Gifts from Bristol Designers

This TOP 5 feature was meant to be Easter themed, but as I sit here staring out the window at snow covered gardens I can’t quite manage to pretend rabbits and daffodils are just around the corner. So I’m going rogue and featuring cacti instead! Because a cactus is tough and prickly which is pretty much how this Spring feels so far, plus they’ve got more chance of survival than flowers right now. Also I realised everyone seems to bloody love a good cactus, and I know many other Bristol designers who sell cactus themed products. So what better excuse than to feature them all and make this post about Bristol makers too!

 

Jessica Baldry Handmade Papercut Cactus

1. HANDMADE PAPERCUT CACTUS by Jessica Baldry.

Jess is a fellow Bristol Girl Bosses collective member and an incredible papercut artist! Can never believe she does these by hand, just look at those delicate spikes. It may not surprise you to learn she’s a very patient person.

 

Snippet Art Cacti Pots Collection Print

2. CACTI POTS by Snippet Art.

This artist likes to remain mysterious, but I can tell you that you can buy his whimsical prints in Blaze up on Colston Street in Bristol city centre. Love the colours, and all the discreet little details of pattern on the pots in this print. My fave is the second row down, third column along, how about you?

 

Moloney Makes Cacti Crochet Magnet

3. CROCHET CACTI MAGNET by Moloney Makes.

So adorable! Sophie from Moloney Makes hand knits and crochets everything in her Etsy shop! This cactus is magnetic so you can prettify your fridge with it.

 

Melanie Wickham Tiny WIndowsill Garden Linocut

4. TINY WINDOWSILL GARDEN LINOCUT PRINT by Melanie Wickham.

I recently met Mel through the latest Tribe Aisthetica exhibition at The Malago. Her prints are all brilliant and so full of humour. I had thought this one was a little more serious than the rest, until I spotted that funny little face pot hidden on the right!

 

Hello Cleo Cactus Print Cushion Cover

5. CACTUS PRINT CUSHION by Hello Cleo.

Finally, another fellow Bristol Girl Bosses member. Sabina has such an eye for quirky prints to make her homewares and clothing out of. This cactus print is brilliant and has been such a popular one!

Have a very happy Easter, maybe try giving a cactus or a cacti themed gift this year instead of bunnies? Might make it my mission to start a trend with this! Whatever you do, remember to eat chocolate, that’s the main thing.

Sky x

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Country Living Spring Fair 2017 Pop-Up Market

 

As you may well have heard I recently attended the Country Living Spring Fair as part of their pop-up market section for young businesses. There was a competition to be awarded one of these stalls for free for one day of the fair so I was delighted to get chosen to attend! The event was four days long so I was only there for the first day of the event on Thursday, April 27th but the venue was buzzing with people all day and a real joy to take part in.

 

Country Living Spring Fair 2017 Pop-Up

Wish I’d managed to take a few more photos but here is one of my stand all set up. I was quite pleased with how it looked as I’m constantly trying to improve on my presentation as I bring out more and more product types. Propping up my pegboard using an easel was particularly handy. My new stone placemats proved really popular all day. Their rustic feel obviously appealed well to the Country Living magazine fans! I also sold lots of cards and coasters as I usually tend to do. It’s interesting how at each event there is always a favourite product that I’ll sell lots of that day.

 

I also took this quick hyperlapse video walking around part of the fair to try to capture a sense of the atmosphere on the day. It was so big and there was so much going on all day making it a really impressive event. They even had little lambs and hens there! I nabbed the photos below from the Country Living Fairs Instagram account just to show how many stands there were in just one of the rooms.

 

Country Living Spring Fair 2017

 

Overall I found the Spring Fair to be a really successful day and everything was very well run. It was a pleasure to get to meet some of the magazine’s editors and so flattering to hear how much they liked my work! I hadn’t realised the editors had actually been the ones on the selection panel for the pop-up market and they told me that the competition was really fierce so I felt really proud to have been picked.

Having been lucky enough to attend for free, I’m unsure whether or not to look at doing the event again with a paid stand for now. I certainly think the Christmas Fair would be more worthwhile when paying such a large sum of money so I may just look into it nearer the time! Next up I’m back at The Frome Independent market on May 7th with my suitcase up on Catherine Hill… Come say hi!

 

APRIL Pinterest Board of the Month

 

Live Beautifully by Lobster & Swan.

A new monthly feature for the blog featuring snippets from a beautiful Pinterest board of my choosing each month for you all to enjoy. This is something I used to do via Twitter and Facebook quite often but I thought why not give these boards the full glory that they deserve and bring it on over to the blog!

This month I’ve picked this gorgeous selection of interiors titled Live Beautifully, exquisitely curated by photographer and stylist Lobster & Swan. All of these homes have a very floral, country living style Spring vibe going on so I thought it an apt choice for April’s pick. There are lots of flowers, antique furnishings, distressed wood and hues of pinks, greys and sage greens going on all creating a wonderfully rustic English garden style. I’ve picked three highlights below which I particularly liked for their use of vintage vs. contemporary furnishings, pastel shades and indoor plants but check out the whole board to get really inspired!

Pinterest Board of the Week - Live Beautifully. Piano

Pinterest Board of the Week - Live Beautifully. Living Room

Pinterest Board of the Week - Live Beautifully. Dining Room

If you enjoyed this post, stay tuned and subscribe via the links on the right for my Pinterest board of the month for May! Here’s my very own Pinterest profile if you fancy a gander at that too. Until next time! X

Spring News Update

Hello and Happy Easter! Just wanted to do a quick little Sky Siouki Spring news update on this wonderful Good Friday.

First up… I’ve recently gained a lovely new stockist in Bradford on Avon called Silver Street Studio! Looking forward to hopefully seeing some photos of my products in this gorgeous designer-maker based shop in Somerset soon. It’s looking like there may be even more Sky Siouki stockists in the pipeline for 2017 but we will have to wait and see for that… watch this space.

Silver Street Studio Shop

 

In other news, my new furnishing fabrics collection is now live online! You may have seen updates about this on it’s way on my Instagram feed but now the wait is over and you can officially order Sky Siouki design fabrics by the metre in either linen union or cotton velvet. They are very specialist luxury fabrics, digitally printed to order and aimed towards soft furnishings and upholstery. Choose linen for a subtler, rustic look and velvet for a more vibrant, decadent style! View all five designs here.

I have also been hard at work this week creating a new online shop which you should be able to see is now fully integrated into my website and blog. So you can now do a quick spot of reading in-between shopping all right here on the same page! You should be able to see a ‘cart’ link in the right of the top menu here as well as new features like creating your own Sky Siouki shop account and wishlist even! Have a little browse via the shop link above.

Alpine - Linen/Velvet Fabric

 

If you subscribe to my newsletter or follow my Instagram you may well have also heard the exciting news that I will be holding a stall at the Country Living Spring Fair pop-up market the week after next on Thursday 27th April! It’s crept up so fast and was such a surprise as I made the application a little while ago and the pop-up market is just a small specialist section especially for young businesses to try the event out for free. I’ll be there just for the one day so if you do visit make sure to come on the Thursday to see me! Not quite sure what to expect but very excited to be taking part so wish me luck! I’ll be sending out leaflets with a 35% off code for tickets with every Sky Siouki order in the run up to it.

Country Living Spring Fair

 

I am making an effort to attend more events and markets throughout the year in general as well. I did the first Frome Independent of the year at the start of the month and it was a beautiful day with thousands of people on the streets of Frome! Here’s a little photo of my suitcase sale stand up on Catherine Hill. I’m booked in to do May, June and July as well, and hopefully more as the year goes on.

I also hope to begin selling at a few Tobacco Factory Sunday markets in Bristol soon. This isn’t one I’ve tried before so I shall have to see how it goes but it’s right on my doorstep so fingers crossed I may soon become a regular there too! To start with you can find Sky Siouki at Tobacco Factory on 28th May and 25th June!

Frome Independent April 2017

That’s all of my news for now. Thank you very much for reading and continuing to support Sky Siouki and I hope to see some of you at my next event perhaps. X

 

MOTHER’S DAY GIFTS… TOP 5 Gift Guide

Mother’s Day is only a few weeks away now! (Which also means The Bristol Artisan which I will be selling at is very soon too. Eeee!) Anyway if you’re after a unique and special Mother’s Day gift for your mum this March then you are in the right place. I just love finding feminine handmade presents so putting together this little TOP 5 list was a delight. I’ve only featured artisan UK companies since I am all about supporting locals and independents and because I know mum’s appreciate things that are extra special and thoughtful. So without further ado here are my TOP 5 Mother’s Day Gifts.

Mother's Day Gifts - Handmade Pink and Gold Bowl

1. Handmade Pink Bowl with 24 Carat Gold from Att Pynta

I have to admit I have such an obsession with little bowls but I swear there are few woman in this world who don’t have a million uses for little pots and bowls like these including all the mums out there! Use them for dips, nuts, fruit, jewellery, pins, keys, anything! What’s even better is when you find a beautifully handmade bowl in a stunning dusky pink or midnight blue glazed with real gold around the rim like these ones made by Marie L Sundegren in colloboration with Att Pynta. I love that each one is slightly different with it’s minor imperfections showing that they are lovingly hand crafted.

Mother's Day Gifts - Siberian Husky Hair Wool Socks

2. Siberian Husky Hair and Wool Hand Knitted Socks from The Gorgeous Company

Maybe socks may seem like a clichéd gift but when socks are this good, who wouldn’t want a pair! These just look so incredibly soft and snuggly, made from husky hair would you believe! The huskies are just brushed during moulting season so no need to fear, these are totally ethically made.

 

Mother's Day Gifts - Needle Felted Snowdrop Sculpture

3. Snowdrop Pair Needle Felted Sculpture from The Whispering Wild

I recently discovered the amazing creations of The Whispering Wild and am in awe of each and every one I see. Her handmade needle-felted plants and animals make truly unique and beautiful gifts for mothers to treasure for years. She creates a lot of bespoke work so get in touch if your mum has a favourite animal you’d like made in felt for her. Here are some snowdrops in honour of Spring blossoming in March.

 

Mother's Day Gifts - Ladies Floral Purse

4. Waterproof Floral Ladies Coin Purse by Jiggle Ma Wiggle

Jiggle Ma Wiggle have a lovely selection of vintage designs available on a variety of zip pouches and bags. All waterproofed and with sweet little tassel zip pulls attached. This floral pattern and delicate mix of pink and ochre struck me as an ideal choice as a gift for a feminine mum. Just like bowls, there are always a million handy uses for little purses like these!

 

Mother's Day Gifts - Minimal Copper and Faux Leather Necklace

5. Minimal Copper and Faux Leather Necklace by Katie Betty

If you have a stylish mum who likes to stay on trend then these handmade necklaces from Katie Betty fit the bill perfectly! With a lovely subtle variety of colour combos available and simplistic geometric shapes these necklaces would look great with everyday wear and evening outfits too. She’ll feel really special knowing her necklace is unique and handmade.

I hope this gift guide leaves you feeling a little better equipped for Mother’s Day this year! If you’re still in need of ideas why not check out Peach Hamper’s gift guide here, full of thoughtful ideas with a personal touch. And if you’re still stuck, why not bring your mum to The Bristol Artisan on Mother’s Day instead and buy something of her choice from one of the fantastic 50 designers who’ll be selling there all weekend at The Arnolfini! See you there!

SKY SIOUKI 2017 EVENTS

I’ve got a few new 2017 events in place now so here is a little update of where you can find me and buy from Sky Siouki in the coming months. I’m making an effort to try to push myself to do more events so I can meet more customers, learn what you like and of course keep Sky Siouki thriving so hopefully all of the events will bring lots of good things!

 

The Frome Independent 2017 Events

THE FROME INDEPENDENT

When: Sunday 5th March, Sunday 2nd April, Sunday 7th May

Where: Frome, Somerset

What: If you haven’t been to the Frome Independent before then I’d highly recommend a visit! On the first Sunday of every month, as they put it – something wonderful will happen! The whole town is taken over with an amazing array of handmade wares, artisan food, vintage treasures and family friendly entertainment. I’m excited to be selling at the market again with my new Flight collection this time having missed out last year.

All being well, I’ll be back in Frome in April and May throughout Spring with my mini-stall on Catherine Hill. Waiting for confirmation on the Summer markets for June, July and August still but hoping this one may just become a regular thing each month.

 

The Bristol Artisan 2017 Events

THE BRISTOL ARTISAN

When: Saturday 25th & Sunday 26th March

Where: The Arnolfini, Bristol

What: Brought to you by Designers / Makers, you may have already seen my previous post announcing that I would be selling at this exciting new event in Bristol where you can read more about it. With 50 designer makers taking part and taking place across Mother’s Day weekend it’ll be the perfect thing to do in Bristol with your mum!

 

 

Top Drawer 2017 Events

TOP DRAWER

When: Sunday 10th – Tuesday 12th September

Where: Olympia, London

What: This one is just for looking I’m afraid as it’s a big London trade show for those who aren’t familiar with it. It really is huge though and it’s been a long time goal of mine to attend so I am SO ecstatic to reveal that I’m going to be there with my very own stand in the Spotted section this September! So nervous and excited at the same time, still doesn’t quite seem real!

 

That’s all of my 2017 events for now but there may well be even more things to come. Although I’m trying my best not to overdo it or you may find me without any hair left by Christmas! Keep following the blog and join the mailing list to stay updated with what Sky Siouki has planned next!

 

The Bristol Artisan

Some exciting news I’ve been waiting to announce for 2017! Designers/Makers who organise The London Artisan have chosen Bristol as their second city to branch out into which I couldn’t be happier about. Following a successful Christmas market in Bristol at the end of last year they are going to be holding a larger event this year in March at the Arnolfini and I am going to be taking part!

The Bristol Artisan

So on March 25th & 26th The Bristol Artisan will be taking place at the Arnolfini, with 40 designer makers exhibiting including Sky Siouki! The event will be free to visit and open to the public as well as trade. See who else is taking part here.

I’m going to have my own little white walled shell stand to fill so I’m super excited about planning this out. Think it’s about time I purchased a power drill! The event is also ideally timed for me as a stepping stone towards potentially exhibiting at Top Drawer this September. The January edition of Top Drawer opened yesterday and it’s been really exciting to see lots of photos of everyone’s beautiful stands popping up on Instagram and so I feel really motivated to apply now.

In other news this January, I recently did a Meet The Maker interview for my digital fabric printers BeFab Be Creative giving you a little insight into my business and how I work. Have a read here if you’re interested. I’ve had some lovely responses about it which is of course always really nice to hear!

I’m expecting to be taking part in The Frome Independent market again this year too but can’t announce which dates yet so keep your eyes peeled for that!

5 Exciting Twists on Fresh White Bedsheets

Spring is coming! I know it really doesn’t feel that way outside but I swear, it has to get here soon. I feel like giving my home a fresh update at the moment ready for the warmer months and so I’ve been drooling all over the thought of crisp new bedsheets. What with all the printed cushions and quirky home accessories I own I’ve found myself craving something unusually plain however… Which isn’t like me at all but it seems necessary to have some clean white bedsheets to balance out all the pattern and colour everywhere else. I couldn’t ever go full on plain white though because that’s clearly just way too boring so here is my little shortlist of favourite ways I’ve come across to have minimal white bedsheets with an exciting little twist.

1- Subtle Polka Dots

Probably my fave, I just can’t get enough of good ol’ polkas. Love the subtle use of them on these sheets in a pale neutral colour, organically dispersed and fairly small scale. Fun but classy polkas! These were from Urban Outfitters but I’m gutted they’re sold out. Closest I could find available to buy are these available in various colours from Australian brand Feliz. Check out Country Road too.

Gentle Polka Dots

 

2- Pleated

Things just got way classy. Who needs patterns when you can have texture? I have to admit a few years ago I think I would have hated the thought of pleated white bedsheets but styled with some complimentary prints and bird themed wall art this example makes a killer contender. Check out West Elm for some beautiful textural choices like these available in other colours too. These seersucker sheets from Debenhams are also a great option at a very reasonable price.

Pleated

 

3- Ethnic Borders

I love to mix in some cultural style influences in my home. This simplistic Indian inspired pattern works so well used minimally as a border instead of an allover print… and if you can find something embroidered even better. Urban Outfitters and Anthropologie are the masters in this department, like these printed ones for example.

Ethnic Border

 

4- Pom Poms

Much like polka dots, pom poms are a great way to add fun to anything in danger of becoming dull. This is another theme Urban Outfitters and Anthropologie excel at… can you tell I’m a fan? But I did find these very nice and simple pom pom edged covers from Marks & Spencers which come in pink, blue or lilac. Or… you could even make your own à la this amazing tutorial! (Tassels are also great.)

Pom Poms

 

5- Tonal Linen

Probably the most sophisticated of all. Linen and it’s beautiful organic feel will really make your bed look a million bucks. I think linen tends to look best in off whites and greys like this example to compliment it’s very natural aesthetic. The mix of tones here really is divine. Etsy shop, Linen Tales, from Lithuania has a stunning selection of shades on offer, or once again you could try West Elm or Anthropologie. Even H&M and Zara have some gorgeous options, clearly it’s a big trend right now.

Tonal Linen Stonewashed

 

Ok, now I’m seriously lost with which to choose. All of my money is about to be squandered on beautiful bedding. Hope you all enjoy these ideas and find the bedsheets of your dreams too. Sleep tight! x

TOP 5… Spring Inspired Prints

Springtime is now in full swing and so in light of all the lovely weather we’ve been having, this month’s Top 5 feature is on Spring inspired prints! All the prints I’ve picked are for interiors either on furnishing fabrics, wallpapers or interior accessories.

Spring Inspired Prints

  1. Lotus Pink Cushion by Bonnie & Neil £75 – Love the vibrancy of this pink botanical print by Australian brand Bonnie & Neil, contrasted nicely with a fun black trim.
  2. Bashful Bunnies Silk Cushion by Silken Favours £95 – I’m a huge Silken Favours fan and a major rabbit lover too so when this new silk bunny design came out it was bound to be an instant hit with me.

  3. PowderPuff Rose Fabric by Abigail Ryan £89 per metre – Abigail Ryan’s graphic florals and bold colours create a really strong Spring vibe full of warmth and joy.

  4. Harrys Garden Fabric by Louise Body £55 per metre – This design is a little more subdued but the sweet little garden birds inject some Springtime life into the delicately illustrated design.

  5. Harvest Hare Wallpaper in Corn by Mark Hearld £60 per roll – Mark Hearld’s linocut designs have a beautiful timeless quality. This wallpaper would make any room feel warm and happy even when it’s not Spring.

Keep up with more of my Top 5 features on the Shopping section of my blog.

TOP 5… Alternative Easter Gifts

Springtime is fast approaching and Easter is only a week away! If you don’t fancy filling up on chocolate eggs this Easter though I’ve put together a lovely little selection of alternative Easter gifts to tickle your fancy. I’ve had a rather indulgent March myself having just been away in Portugal (blog post to follow soon!) and with Summer ahead I’m trying my hardest to stave off chocolate for now. If you’re feeling the same as me or perhaps have children who have gotten a little too old for eggs why not go for a rabbit gift this year instead?!

Rabbit Gifts

1. Bunny Rabbit Necklace by Love Hearts and Crosses  £29
This rabbit necklace is absolutely adorable and his pink bow gives an extra Easter touch. Perfect for a teenage daughter.
2. Rabbit & Cabbage iPhone Case by Thornback & Peel  £19.95
I’ve been a big fan of Thornback & Peel since they first emerged and now they’ve even starting doing phone covers!
3. Rabbit & Sun Print by Jen Rowland  £20
This screen-printed vintage rabbit illustration looks stunning set off against a golden sun.

Rabbit Gifts 2

  1. Baby Bunny Night Light from DotComGiftShop  £3.95
    This cheap and cheerful bunny night light is so cute. At only £3.95 I may just have to get one of these for myself.
  2. Rabbit Shaped Plush Cushion by Sky Siouki  £33
    Couldn’t resist including my own rabbit cushion in the mix. Printed onto soft cotton and backed with black velvet this one is nice and cuddly!

Keep up with more of my Top 5 features on the Shopping section of my blog.