I have to confess that I love getting parcels through the post. A day without a chat with the postie is a sad one! I love everything about parcels. It’s even better if it’s a surprise! I’m very lucky that doing what I do, I get stock deliveries on a regular basis. There is nothing better than opening a huge box of loveliness! Actually there is one thing better; getting to keep it!
I’ve always loved stationery and since starting my own business and using a planner more I found a legitimate excuse for lots of washi tape! In my previous incarnation as a teacher, I had many notebooks, stickers and coloured pens but only got to use them in other people’s books!
Over the years, I’ve had many subscriptions from craft magazines, to boxes of yarn, to healthy snacks. I’ve even had a stationery box but do you know what? It was a bit dull! I love hunting for things that are fun and quirky. Stationery should be pleasurable and should add a bit of happiness to a simple task like writing a shopping list.
I also discovered the frustration of British stationery addicts having to order from the USA. Waiting with anticipation for a customs bill and getting their parcel weeks after their American counterparts. The step from mystery boxes to subscription boxes seemed like a small one but the amount of planning and organisation has taken me by surprise. If you saw the piles of boxes in my house you may think otherwise but I’m actually more organised than I’ve been in a very long time! My lovely new bullet journal is helping with that. As is my bible of a spreadsheet which is doing all the sums for me!
As we are almost half way through the month, I’ve started to reveal some sneak peaks of items going into July’s subscription box. Don’t worry I won’t give everything away; there will be plenty of surprises!
What sort of things might I get in my box?
If you don’t like stationery then stop reading now! Who am I kidding? Everyone loves stationery!
- Washi tape
- Sticky Notes
- Planner clips
- Stationery storage
- Novelty items related to the theme.
Each month’s box will be around a different theme and I will try to vary the types of items month to month so you don’t end up with twelve pencil cases each year but the boxes will always contain washi tape and stickers.
Not signed up yet? Be quick there are only a few spaces left! If you have missed out, I’ll be opening signups for August on the first of the month and adding another 20 places. Sign up for my newsletter to hear about it first.
So where did Rowan Trees Supplies come from? As many of you know it’s a relatively new business which is evolving rapidly. Almost exactly a year ago I left teaching and became self employed. I found that I needed my planner to work harder in order to keep on top of family life, my business and my (very sporadic) social life! I met Natalie at a networking meeting and her Ultimate Success Planner was exactly what I’d been looking for!
The next step was to make my planner pretty! This is where my stash of washi tape, stickers and pretty pens came in to their own!
I found that the supplies I wanted were expensive and a challenge to get hold of locally. At the same time I was working on expanding my range of craft kits as part of Under the Rowan Trees. I noticed that although I’d designed my kits for children, many of them were appealing to adults; I even sold three ‘paint your own’ Christmas decorations to a husband, wife and dog at a Christmas fair in 2016! I’d love to see what the dog produced!
More and more people were talking to me at fairs about their own love of crafting. After a light bulb moment in a rather chilly marquee, Rowan Trees Supplies was born!
As well as craft kits, I added wooden buttons, some jewellery making supplies and of course stationery! I love hunting for quirky designs. Items that aren’t available in the UK and that add fun to my planner. I am gradually expanding my range and would want to hear from you what you’d like to see in the shop. What do you want to use in your planner?
I’ll be back tomorrow to tell you more about my new subscription boxes. I’m so excited that I want to give all my secrets away! Some one tell me to put a sock in it or I’ll spoil the surprise!
If you have been following Under the Rowan Trees for a while you may have noticed some changes! There has been an addition to the family! No, not the dog, Rowan Trees Supplies! I have turned my love or hoarding into a business!
I love hunting out quirky craft items and stationery and I am making it my mission to bring them all Under the Rowan Trees (much to my husband’s displeasure). My dining room is now the heart, soul and repository of all things kooky and beautiful!
The Monochrome Collection
I’m still busy crafting, knitting and sewing away in front of Netflix but I’m also on a shopping mission to find lovely things from all over the world and to bring them here to Northumberland. My postie is oh so happy!
As well as selling on Etsy, I’m working on building my on little empire right here on undertherowantrees.org and I want to say a huge thank you so all those of you who have made it possible!
If you haven’t already, pop over to Facebook and enter my giveaway to win a Mystery Box.
And make sure you have signed up for my newsletter so that you can find out more about my subscription boxes which are coming in July. Eeek!!
Right back to work adding more pretties to the website! If you want a sneaky peak at what’s coming to Rowan Trees Supplies, have a look at my unboxing video from earlier today. I apologise for the washing machine spinning in the background!
Welcome to Neal’s Yard Remedies
Neal’s Yard Remedies opened their doors on 4th December, 1981 in Neal’s Yard, a once forgotten corner of Covent Garden, in the heart of central London, England. A passionate belief that beauty should be natural, not synthetic, has been at the heart of the business since it started, over 30 years ago. Neal’s Yard Organics believe in nature, honesty and transparency, and your right to know what goes into the products you buy.
Their vision was to bring the expertise of the apothecary and our holistic approach to health and beauty to people and communities.
Today awareness and interest in natural remedies, skin and body care are on the increase. But when NYROrganic opened their first shop in Covent Garden, they were one of the few pushing against the synthetic chemical approach to skin and health care that had been adopted by much of the industry.
This is why I’ve decided to become an independent consultant for Neal’s Yard Remedies; bringing their amazing products to Under the Rowan Trees.
I first discovered their products when I was bought ‘Mother’s Balm’ by my own mother when I was pregnant. It was divine and I fell in love with the whole idea behind the brand as well as the products.
To browse the NYROrganic product range, visit my NYROrganic website or get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
I’m sure I’m not alone but I just can’t stop buying this stunning tana lawn fabric. I think I may have been late to the party but I am certainly making up for it now! Liberty print fabric is available in a vast array of colours and patterns but every one is divine! I have been buying scraps and off cuts over the last year but finally treated myself to two full metres (don’t worry – it was in the sale!)
I have been using my tiny flashes of delight to create Liberty print ear studs, hair ties, pin badges and necklaces. I feel a true obsession coming on as I trawl the internet for vintage Liberty print fabric; I dream of stumbling across a pile in a charity shop!
Liberty floral 14mm ear studs
History of Liberty Print Fabric
Arthur Liberty began his career as an apprentice for a draper. He then took on a job at Farmer & Roger’s Great Shawl and Cloak Emporium – a position that set him on course of his life’s work. After ten years of work there, learning about textiles & other arts, he decided to branch out and open his own business in 1875, named ‘East India House’ where he solely sold Oriental imports – namely rugs, decorative objects and…fabrics!
After a few years, East India House grew & demand for their gorgeous fabrics became stronger. It was then that Liberty made the decision to import undyed fabrics and have them handprinted in England in the style of Oriental fabrics. At this point, Liberty started marketing their fabrics as ‘Made in England’ and their growth as a British brand began.
In the 1920s, Liberty began to produce miniature floral, paisley & abstract prints that became known as ‘Liberty Prints’ and the rest, as far as we are concerned, is history! Liberty Prints are an absolute best seller in our online collection with over 150 prints to choose from available in cottons, silks, and even PVC & corduroy! Despite all this choice, their Tana Lawn cotton is by far the most popular – a specific lightweight cotton that is ideal for dresses, blouses, shirts & skirts.
With thanks to Joel and Son Fabrics
The Winnie Shawl
This pattern has been designed with beginners in mind. It is ideal for perfecting an even tension and confidence with garter stitch.
You will need:
- 5mm needles (I prefer a circular needle as the shawl becomes very wide towards the end).
- 100g of sock weight yarn (this pattern would work just as well with any weight of yarn. Just adjust the needle size accordingly).
- Tapestry needle for weaving in the ends.
- Cast on three stitches using your preferred method.
- Slip 1, knit front and back of next stitch, knit 1.
- Slip 1, kfb, knit to end.
- S1, kfb, k to end.
Continue until you have almost used almost all of your yarn then cast off using the method of your choice ensuring that your edge is nice and stretchy.
January has been rather blue all round but we can now put it behind us and embrace February with open arms!
I spent a couple of weeks in bed feeling poorly and pathetic but managed to knit up a very small storm.
A mix of knitting, crochet and even a first attempt at weaving. I feel I’ve really neglected you all and will try to get back in the swing of blogging and regular newsletters. What have you all been up to? I’d love to see your crafts.
For more regular updates, follow me on instagram, facebook and pinterest.
This Christmas, the lovely Jodi from Cuddlebums Yarn launched an advent box which contained 25 little paper bags of loveliness. Lots of yarnies like me signed up and on the first of December we tore them open like excited toddlers.
The range and variety of resulting projects are amazing!
I started by knitting a pair of wrist warmers following this pattern. I used days 1 to 11; splitting each mini-skein in two so that I have a matching pair.
I realised after the first two days that 25 x 5g was a lot more than one pair of wrist warmers so I cast on my first ever Hitchhiker shawl. I had seen the pattern many times and it had been in my queue for ages! In order to create a big snuggly shawl, I decided to stripe the colours with some grey from Jodi which I already had in my stash. I used 3.5mm needles with a 80cm cable which was perfect.
I love how it turned out!
As a group, we shared our excitement each day. Some of us were good and didn’t peek ahead; some of us were not. Some of us knitted; some crocheted. Some of us were fast and finished by boxing day; some of us did not. But what we all had in common was that we loved the surprises and the amazing colours which Jodi and created.
If you would like to add an image of your finished project please add it in the comments or email it to email@example.com and I’ll add it to the slideshow.
I have been knitting for a little over a year and initially struggled to find simple patterns to practise on and easily became frustrated and disheartened. I have attempted to create a pattern which is simple, achievable and contains links to tutorials to help with learning new skills. I hope that the Lumpy Bumpy Cowl will fit the bill!
Ideally, before attempting to start this pattern you should be able to perform the knit and purl stitches but the video does show these clearly.
The finished cowl is beautiful and snuggly and has a great stretch to it. I would love to see your finished creations! Do shout if anything is unclear.
You will need:
200g of Yarn (chunky or super chunky work best)
Circular needles (8mm to 15mm depending on yarn)
Cast on an odd number of stitches using your preferred method. I like the long tail method as it is lovely and stretchy. This is a great video to show you how to do it. I would recommend a bit of practice.
I cast on 19 stitches for super chunky and 33 for chunky. You can use any number you like to alter the width of your cowl. Remember that making it wider will mean that you need more yarn or that the finished cowl will be shorter.
The pattern from here is very simple: knit one, purl one. Each row should begin and end on a knit stitch.
Turn your work and repeat.
Continue in this pattern until you run our of yarn. Cast off and sew the ends together using your yarn tail and a darning needle. Weave in the ends and it is ready to wear!
The finished length will vary depending on how wide you made your cowl. 200g of super chunky created the perfect length.