Friday, 18 December 2015

Closed for Christmas

PhotoFairytales will be closed for Christmas from 3pm (on the dot!) this afternoon, and will re-open on January 7th 2015.

I would like to thank each and every one of you for your custom, support, and all round loveliness - I can't tell you how appreciated your patronage has been!

I wish you all a FANTASTIC Christmas, and FABULOUS New Year, and I look forward to working on something for you in 2016.

Have a great one everybody,
Sarah :) x

Saturday, 12 December 2015

Christmas order deadlines: don't panic!!

Still hunting that elusive gift for Auntie Joyce or baby Keith? Whilst some last order dates have already passed, there's still plenty of choice available at PhotoFairytales which will be created especially for you and dispatched in time for Christmas delivery.

You can view all the last order deadlines over on the site here. Please note that orders must be placed (and all personalisation, photos, wording, etc, provided) by 5pm on the dates quoted.

PhotoFairytales will be closed from 3pm (sharp!) on the 18th until January 7th.

Sarah x


Friday, 11 December 2015

All hail: the Sock!

I admit I'm amongst the first people to declare socks as being one of the more boring Christmas presents, but today I'm feeling a little bit fond of that foot-hugging, toe-snuggling, under-rated little bit of clothing...

You see, today I am wearing BRAND NEW SOCKS! And there are few things in life as pleasing, in a small and subtle way, as a brand new sock. Come on, you know I'm right!

When you're used to pulling on socks that have seen better days, maybe a little holey, perhaps a bit lacking in the elastic department, that moment when you treat your feet to a brand new and unsullied pair of socks is a moment to treasure. There they are, perfectly paired, pristine and smooth flat in the packaging... perhaps they're nestled amongst a pack of 5 and they're all different colours. But you indulge yourself and pick the one from the middle because they're the ones that you secretly coveted the moment you saw them hanging in the shop. The other colours are fine, sure, but those ones - they're the very reason you bought the pack after all! You slip them onto your feet and admire the lack of holes and smoothness... bliss!

My new socks are indeed from the middle of the pack - and they're a gorgeous royal blue which goes rather fetchingly with my vintage blue jeans. Pleasing. Very, very pleasing....

So, whilst I admit, giving/getting socks for Christmas may not be the pinnacle of excitement they are a slow burner - the kind of gift that you pick up on December 27th perhaps, and think "ooh, new socks, I think I'll wear these today..", and then you have a little inner smile to yourself...

Sarah x

Thursday, 10 December 2015

Santa Letter Packs: selling fast!

There are just a few Santa Letter Packs left now, so if you know a little boy or girl (or a big, grown up boy or girl!) who would love Santa to write to them too, head over to reserve one now...

Have some extra magic - and a great big smile - delivered this Christmas, for just £6.50 including delivery. Plus, every letter sold raises money for The Children's Society; a UK charity fighting child poverty and neglect. So it's a win-win!!

Every letter is written individually, letters to siblings are always different to one another, and if Santa has written to you before the letter will be different to previous ones too. Each one is packed so full of detail they will know for certain that Santa is real - and he handsigns each and every letter too.

With a personalised quality certificate, and 4 fantastic gifts too, these Santa letter packs are AMAZING value. You won't find any others with so much attention and quality at such a great price.

Order quickly, before they all go - click here for details or to book your letter.

Sarah x

Crummy Christmas, Naff Noel...

Why is it that at this time of year so many of us (and I include myself in this, don't worry), seem to have our taste gene removed? Why do we find ourselves considering the purchase of something that has 'novelty' written on the label? Or think things are funny which at any other time of the year we'd curl our lip at?

Well, don't look at me, I don't have the answer. But what I do have is my round up of some items that have made me stop in my tracks this season. (Don't worry, I haven't bought any of them):

* Creepy Horse Head Ornament - Not On The High Street
* Elf Table Leg Covers (coordinating chair covers also available, should you want them...) - Avon
* Christmas Cutlery Cosies - Ebay
* Fart Extinguisher - Amazon
* 3 Piece Christmas Toilet Accessory Set - Amazon
* Novelty Christmas Tie - Ebay
* Christmas Toilet Paper - Ebay
* Reindeer Poop Soap (chocolate scented - of course) - Etsy
* Reindeer Poop & Santa Farts Candles (every home needs candles at Christmas) - Etsy
* 3D Christmas jumper (Santa's bottom actually inflates. Truly...) - Sports Direct

Interestingly, some of these culprits have been spotted at some of those supposedly hip and cool online emporiums (I'm looking at you, Not on the High Street and Etsy). So there, if you're still strapped for ideas you know where to go. Or not.
Now, the question is, if you had to choose just one of these, which would you choose? Come on, you have to choose one, and leave a comment to confess tell me...
Sarah ;) x

Tuesday, 8 December 2015

Oh well, it is Christmas!

When was the last time you had a jar of piccalilli in the house? The only time we have this radioactive yellow, blow-the-top-of-your-head-off stuff is at Christmas. And the only time it gets eaten is in January (when it’s under threat of being thrown away if it’s not flaming well eaten!).

Likewise, apart from at Christmas time, when was the last time you drank mulled wine? Or ate mincemeat? Or marzipan? Or thought to yourself, “I know what I need, a bowl of rock hard nuts on the coffee table that will explode into splinters/sprain my wrist when I try to open them…”? I have heard some people can’t even get through the season without buying a bottle of Advocat (I’ve seen the gap on the shelf in Tesco and I reckon they don’t often have a rush on it other than in December).

And it’s not just our buying habits that get a bit odd at this time of year - when was the last time you went to a friends house in the morning and they offered you a “little drink” at 10 o’clock in the morning? And yet, on any day in December that starts with a “2” or a “3” its perfectly acceptable!

All year round we tell our children about stranger danger - and then in December we take them to the nearest department store or garden centre and actively encourage them to sit on the knee of an unknown man wearing a fake beard. At what other time of the year do we encourage our children to put pen to paper and write down everything that their hearts desire (along with the Argos page number)?

At what other time of the year would you ever consider buying Aunty Jean a novelty door stop? Or eat chocolate for breakfast? Or jam cloves into an orange?

Oh well, it is Christmas… so raise a glass to guilty pleasures, because I reckon all these foibles tell us one thing alone: that we may act all grown up from January to November, but given half a chance deep down we’re all still 9 (but now we’re old enough to go to the shop and buy Baileys!).

Sarah x


Sunday, 6 December 2015

Christmas Gift Guide: Top 10 Personalised Gifts for Girls

At PhotoFairytales you’ll find a whole shop packed with all the unique, unusual, quirky, bit-different, handmade, personalised, whimsical, gorgeous Christmas presents you’re searching for! Everything is made in Britain, everything has free UK delivery, and there’s gifts for every occasion, person, and time of year. Be a gift giving genius!

Today I'm showing you some lovely Christmas presents for girls that I think you'll love...

2: 'Doll's House' Personalised Board Book, range of designs available, from £13.95
4: 'Preppy' Personalised Name Print, range of designs and colours available, £14.50
9: 'Fairy' Personalised Handpainted Gift Plate, range of designs and colours available, £21.50
10: Personalised Newspaper Print, range of styles available, from 312.50

I hope you've seen something you like - and if you're still searching for that elusive perfect gift, why not take a look back through the last few posts on this blog for some great gift ideas for all ages and types.

Merry Christmas Shopping!
Sarah x


Saturday, 5 December 2015

Christmas Gift Guide: Top 10 Personalised Gifts for Boys

Ever needed to buy a gift for someone, only to draw a complete blank? No idea what to get, but you know you want it to be a bit different? Have you found yourself going back to the same boring old big name shops, looking at all the same boring old stuff everyone else looks at?

Well solve the problem, forget the high street, and take a look at the PhotoFairytales website instead!

Here's some great little gift ideas for boys this Christmas - and everything comes with free UK delivery too:

1: 'Safari' Personalised Board Book, ranges of designs available, from £13.95
2: 'Dog' Handpainted Personalised Gift Plate, range of designs available, £21.50
4: 'When I Grow Up...' Personalised Canvas Print, range of colours and designs available, from £16.95
5: Personalised Official FC Mug, range of teams available, £9.95
9: 'Slugs & Snails' Personalised Name Print, range of designs available, £14.50
10: Personalised Newspaper Print, range of styles available, from £12.50

It's the girls' turn tomorrow, so check back same time tomorrow night for some gorgeous-girly gift ideas!
Sarah x



Friday, 4 December 2015

Christmas Gift Guide: Top 10 Personalised Gifts for Couples

I've got some fabulous gift ideas for you today aimed at couples - old or young, newly wed or old flames! All items come with free UK delivery too, so you don't have to worry about postage costs - the price you see is the price you pay.

1: 'Love My Home' Personalised Print, available in a choice of colours, £14.50
2: 'Vintage' Handmade Personalised Photo Album, £25
3: Handmade Wooden Photo Block, £21.95
4: 'Personality' Canvas Print, from £25
5: Ministry of Silly Personalised Print, range of designs and colours available, £14.50
6: 'Bear' Personalised Embroidery Hoop Print, £18.50
7: 'Birds of a Feather' Personalised Canvas Print, from £16.95
8: 'Kissing' Personalised Vintage Print, range of designs available, £14.50
9: Personalised Blue Heritage Plaque, £17.95
10: Personalised Newspaper Print, wide range of styles available, from £12.50


Check back same time tomorrow as I have some gorgeous gift ideas for boys to show you. Forget the high street, be a gift giving genius this Christmas!

Sarah x

Thursday, 3 December 2015

Christmas Gift Guide: Top 10 Personalised Gifts for Families

Sometimes it's easier to buy a gift for an entire family rather than trying to come up with individual ideas for each family member - cheaper too! Here are some fab ideas that will be a really unique gift this Christmas:

1: Personalised 'Tree' Family Print, choice of colours and styles available, £14.50
2: Personalised 'New Home' print, choice of colours available, from £14.50
3: Metal Family Street Sign, from £17.50
4: Home Sweet Home handpainted Wooden Shelf Blocks, choice of colours available, £21.95
5: 'Blessing' Personalised Embroidery Hoop Print, £18.50
6: Handmade Wooden Photo Block, £21.95
7: Personalised Family Tree Print, £16.95
8: 'Home Sweet Home' Personalised Canvas Print, from £16.95
9: 'Family Home' Personalised Canvas Print, from £16.95
10: 'Timeline' Personalised Print, range of colours available, from £16.50

All prices shown include free delivery in the UK too, so no nasty postage surprises!

Be a gift-giving genius this Christmas,
Sarah x

Wednesday, 2 December 2015

Christmas Gift Guide: Top 10 Personalised Romantic Love Gifts

Have a cosy, smoochy, romantic Christmas this year with these lovely gift ideas...


1: 'Love' Personalised Wooden Photo Blocks, any wording available, wide range of colours, £6.25 per block
2: 'Ticket to Love' Personalised Print, range of designs available, £14.50
3: 'Waves in the Sea' Personalised Print, range of other designs also available, £14.50
4: 'Kissing' Personalised Vintage Print, range of designs available, £14.50
5: Personalised Love Poem Print, range of other designs available, £14.50
6: Personalised 'Vintage' Handmade Keepsake Album, range of designs available, £25
7: 'Foxes' Personalised Embroidery Hoop print, more designs available, £18.50
8: 'Love Story' Personalised Canvas Print, from £16.95
9: Personalised Blue Heritage Plaque, £17.95
10: Personalised 'Timeline' Print, range of colours, from £16.50

Don't forget, delivery is free at PhotoFairytales, so you can order as much or as little as you like or as often as you like and you won't have any nasty P&P charges to worry about!

More great gift ideas same time tomorrow,
Sarah x








Tuesday, 1 December 2015

Christmas Gift Guide: Top 10 Personalised Gifts for Grandparents

It's December 1st - hope you remembered your advent calendar this morning?!

Tonight I want to give you my top 10 gift ideas for those really tricky grandparents - granny and grandad who don't really 'need' anything, have been around and seen everything so are hard to surprise, and who are consequently the hardest of all to buy for! Here are some great ideas that will solve that problem for you - and you can find even more over on the PhotoFairytales website too:

1: Grandparent Print, available in a choice of colours, £14.50
2: Personalised Handmade Photo Album or Boasting Book, wide choice of designs available, £25
3: 'Big Bird, Little Bird' Personalised Canvas Print, from £16.95
4: Personalised Family Tree print, £16.95
5: 'Blessing' Personalised Embroidery Hoop Print, wide range of designs available, £18.50
6: 'Nan' Personalised Handmade Wooden Photo Blocks, other words also available, £25.95
7: 'Giant Vegetable Growing Championship' Personalised Vintage Print, choice of designs available, £14.50
8: Personalised Wooden Family Tree Plaque, range of colours available, from £19.95
9: Personalised Blue Heritage Plaque, £17.95
10: 'My Message to You' Personalised Print, range of designs and colours available, £14.50

All prices quoted include free UK delivery too, so no postage charges to worry about!


Come back again same time tomorrow for some great romantic gift ideas...
Sarah x





Monday, 30 November 2015

Christmas Gift Guide: Top 10 Personalised Gifts for Baby

That first Christmas for a baby is a magical time for parents and grandparents alike - mark the occasion with a unique and truly memorable gift...

1: 'Angel Wings' Fantasy Portrait, from £15
2: Personalised Handpainted Star, choice of colours available, £17.50
3: 'Alphabet' Personalised Name Print, wide choice of colours and styles available, £14.50
4: Personalised Birth Prints, range of colours available, £16.50
5: 'Twinkle Twinkle Little Star' Personalised Embroidery Hoop Print, £18.50
6: 'Once Upon a Time' Personalised Embroidery Hoop Print, £18.50
7: 'Personality' Canvas Print, from £25
8: 'Floral' Personalised Handmade Photo Album, range of designs available, £25
9: 'Mouse Family' Personalised Canvas Print, from £16.95
10: 'Elephant' Personalised Handpainted Gift Plate, wide range of designs and colours available, £21.50

Delivery within the UK is free of charge, so you can order as much or as little as you would like, and you can order as often as you like without getting hit with P&P costs!

Come back again same time tomorrow for some great gift ideas for those hard-to-buy-for grandparents...

Sarah x

Sunday, 29 November 2015

Christmas Gift Guide: Top 10 Personalised Gifts for Mum

Mum's always deserve something special at Christmas, so give her something totally unique this year that she will treasure...

1: Personalised Handmade Photo Album, various designs available, £25
2: 'Mum is Never Wrong' Personalised Print, available in a choice of colours, £14.50
3: 'Bless This House' Personalised Canvas Print, from £16.95
4: Personalised Handpainted Gift Plate, various designs and colours available, £21.50
5: 'Mum' Personalised Handmade Wooden Photo Blocks, ('Mummy' also available), £25.95
6: 'Home Sweet Home' Handpainted Shelf Sitter Blocks, £21.95
7: Personalised Ceramic Mixing Bowl, 2 designs available, £24.95
8: 'Garden' Personalised Embroidery Hoop Print, various designs available, £18.50
9: Personalised Family Tree Print, £16.95
10: Personalised Newspaper Print, wide choice of designs available, from £12.50

Don't forget, UK delivery is free at PhotoFairytales! You can order as much or as little as you like, and as often as you like, and there are no nasty P&P charges to worry about!

You can see all the last recommended order dates for Christmas delivery on the website by clicking here.

More ideas same time tomorrow!
Sarah x

Saturday, 28 November 2015

Christmas Gift Guide: Top 10 Personalised Gifts for Dad

Dad's - they're one of the hardest people to buy for! Don't get stuck and resort to socks and chocs again this year, go for something a bit different...

1: Personalised Official FC Magazine Print, various teams available, from £19.99
2: Personalised Cook's Conversion Chart, available in 2 sizes and a wide choice of colours, from £14.50
3: 'Our Dad' Personalised Print, available in a choice of colours, £14.50
4: Personalised Hammer, £15.95
5: 'Moustache' Vintage Style Personalised Print, various styles available, £14.50
6: Personalised Office FC Mug, various teams available, £9.95
7: Personalised 'Underground' Metal Street Sign, various designs available, from £17.50
8: 'Superbear' Personalised Canvas Print, from £16.95
9: Personalised Handpainted Gift Plate, various designs and colours available, £21.50
10: Personalised Newspaper Print, wide choice of designs available, from £12.50

Don't forget, UK delivery is free at PhotoFairytales! You can order as much or as little as you like, and as often as you like, and there are no nasty P&P charges to worry about!

You can see all the last recommended order dates for Christmas delivery on the website by clicking here.

More ideas coming your way tomorrow!
Sarah x


Friday, 27 November 2015

Christmas Gift Guide: Top 10 Personalised Gifts for Christmas

Christmas shopping season is hotting up now, so over the next 10 days I'm going to be posting some great ideas to get your gift shopping sorted.

Don't forget, delivery is free at PhotoFairytales, so you can order as much or as little as you like or as often as you like and you won't have any nasty P&P charges to worry about!

The first round up if all things Christmassy to really get you in the mood...

1: Triple Christmas Photo Plaques, various designs available - £21.50
2: Handpainted Christmas Plates, various designs and styles available - £21.50
3: 'Pull My Cracker' Personalised Print, choice of colours available - £14.50
4: 'Brown Bear' Personalised Canvas Print, from £16.95
5: Handpainted Wooden Christmas Plaques, various styles available, from £11.99
6: 'The Night Before Christmas' Fantasy Portrait, from £15
7: 'My Dear' Personalised Canvas Print, from £16.95
8: 'Christmas Rabbit' Personalised Embroidery Hoop Print, £18.50
9: Personalised Baby Board Books, various styles and sizes available, from £13.95
10: Personalised Santa Letter Gift Packs, limited edition, £6.50

You can see all the last recommended order dates for Christmas delivery by clicking here. Don't leave it too late!


More great gift ideas for you tomorrow,
Sarah x


What I love this week...

I recently made a discovery on Facebook - a little gem of a shop, that is overflowing with the most charming and adorable creations and I just have to share it with you...

Amy Harrold is the very talented lady behind Pixie Craft Dolls, where she creates magical one-off crocheted dolls that are just beautiful.

Every doll Amy creates is unique, and you can tell just by glimpsing the photos, how much love she puts into her work. Each of her dolls seems to have their own personality - and they are sure to become treasured items.

As well as creating individual dolls, Amy also makes lovely scenes presented in box frames which would look stunning in a baby's nursery. Prices in her Etsy shop range from just £3.50 for her wonderful crocheted biscuits to £39-40 for a box frame. The 10" individual figures are around £20-22.

You can visit Amy's shop on Etsy by clicking here: but if you're thinking about Christmas gift shopping be quick as she will be closing her order book at the end of November!

Sarah :)

Friday, 20 November 2015

Brand new gift range now available...

I'm really proud of my new range of prints - these have been a labour of love, and something I've been working on for ages to get just right...

There are 11 designs to choose from, with styles suitable for all sorts of occasions: new baby, christening, wedding, anniversary, Christmas, birthday and more. They're all created to order and personalised with your own names and dates - plus you can also have your own personal message printed onto the back too.

Each one is printed onto high quality crisp white cotton, and stretched onto a woodgrain effect 6" hoop. They're finished with a handsewn button and dressed with white ribbon so that they're ready to hang straight out of the box.

I very much hope you'll like them - you can see the whole range on the PhotoFairytales site here.

Let me know what you think, I'd love to hear from you!
Sarah x

Thursday, 19 November 2015

Growing old - disgracefully

Call me a weirdo, but ever since I was a little girl I've often wondered about what type of old lady I would be... like I said, call me a weirdo!

I remember seeing Margaret Rutherford in Blithe Spirit and thinking she was probably the coolest old lady I'd ever seen - all tweed skirts and bead necklaces swinging about: brilliant! I quite liked the idea of being one of those 'stuff and nonsense' type of old ladies - the kind that can say anything and unconsciously intimidate everyone they meet.

Then, of course, there's the elegant Audrey Hepburn type - impeccably dressed, silk stockings, hair in a chignon.... I think to be this kind of old lady you have to be that kind of young lady, and I've never ever been able to pull off the groomed look so I think this is going to be unachievable.

Mad cat lady with lots of carrier bags, wearing pop socks and a pack-a-mac? Well, that's probably an easier look! Plus you get to stop and stare at people (it's only old ladies and toddlers that can get away with this), and that's quite a fun idea....

And then there's the hair - my daughter is convinced that old ladies have white fluffy curly hair so that they look like clouds, ready for when they float up to heaven (morbid child). Perhaps I will have a purple rinse? Or dye it jet black. Who knows...

Whatever I end up being, I sincerely hope I'll be a cool old lady. In the meantime, there's a fetching tweed cape they're selling in LaRedoute - maybe I should start collecting my old lady costume in readiness!

Sarah ;)

Monday, 16 November 2015

Why is the High Street called the High Street?

Lots of times I talk about the fact that the items you find on PhotoFairytales you can’t find on the high street. Not being able to find something on the high street is seen as something that gives an item a sense of prestige and scarcity. If it’s something found on the high street then any Tom, Dick or Harry can buy it and that means it isn’t your special, unique discovery!

When you hear the term ‘high street’ you tend to picture a street aimed fairly squarely at retail, full of shops and bustle. But why is it called a ‘high street’, even if the street in question is actually named something completely different? Apparently it all started around 1000AD - when the word ‘high’ was used in the context of superiority (think ‘high society’, ‘high ranking’). A ‘high street’ also physically reflected a road that was built more substantially as a main thoroughfare - above all the mud and mire on normal streets!

So the main street through a town became the ‘high street’ because it was usually the only one that wasn’t a mud trail and along which retailers naturally wanted to sell their wares. Now High Street is the most common road name in the UK: there are nearly 5,500 of them. And they all look the same and sell the same stuff - which is why shopping online for your Christmas presents makes so much more sense!

Sarah ;)


Friday, 13 November 2015

Are you on Santa's Nice List this year..?

It's a magical time of year, and at PhotoFairytales HQ that means one thing: Santa Letters!

After lots of important meetings with the big man in the red suit, conversations about who should be on the Nice List, what goodies they could be sent, etc etc, I'm pleased to announce that the 2015 Letters are now on sale. It's the seventh year in a row that Santa has asked PhotoFairytales to be the official supplier of his extra-special letters, and the 2015 ones are going to be just great!

Now, let's face it, there are lots of companies out there selling personalised Santa Letters. Some of them are cheap - really cheap. But not one of them is quite like these... you see, to start with, Santa signs each and every one himself with his special fountain pen.

Yes, if you get a PhotoFairytales letter you'll know that Santa has actually handled it himself - and composed it himself too. Those cheap letters I mentioned? They're all computer generated - every one is fed into a database, someone hits the 'print' button, and every letter comes out exactly the same as the last. But not these one - no siree bob!

The PhotoFairytales letters are packed with detail - and each one is written especially for the recipient. So, if they received a PhotoFairytales letter last year then the letter they get this year will be different. And if they have brothers and sisters who will be receiving letters too, each letter will be different. After all, why would Santa repeat himself and say the exact same thing to you?!

So the letters are really rather special - plus, they come with a superb quality glossy card certificate which has also been signed by Santa and on which he'll also write the recipient's name. Not only that, but he likes to pop in some extra little gifts too - because let's face it, waiting for Christmas to arrive is hard work when you're counting the days until December 25th, so some little early Christmas presents are always great to receive!

Once Santa has written his letter, filled out the certificate, handwritten the envelope and picked some presents for you, he will package everything up into a big jolly red envelope and add in a pinch of genuine North Pole sprinkles. He then passes the letters through to the Elf Quality Control Department who check each letter and give it their stamp of approval. The final touch is a 'special delivery' sticker.

So, it's fair to say that these letters are really rather special. And remember, he only writes a very limited number of them. These letters are only sent to children that are at the very top of the Nice List! If you think you know someone who should receive one of these letters then you need to put their name down quickly - just visit photofairytales.co.uk/santaletter and reserve yours now before they all go! 

And better yet, each and every letter also raises money for The Children's Society - a UK charity fighting child poverty and neglect. Christmas is a time for giving and thinking of others, and your letter will be supporting their great work.

If you still haven't made up your mind, just take a look at some of the customer comments that Santa received in previous years. Have a little extra magic delivered this Christmas.

Sarah :)

Friday, 30 October 2015

Halloween Freebie: 'No Trick or Treaters' Poster & Free Halloween Wine Labels

Happy Halloween! 

Just in case you may need to avoid Trick or Treaters tomorrow night, I've uploaded this free printable 'No Trick or Treaters' Halloween poster for you to display on your door. You may not want people knocking on your door for many different reasons (maybe you've eaten all the sweets already... or is that just us?), but I do think sometimes those constabulary/council type posters can be a bit... well, snooty!

So if this fits the bill for you any better then do please help yourself and print it off. Just click on the link above.

Alternatively, if you're having a party this weekend these free Halloween Wine Labels might be helpful! They look great, and will help everyone to keep track of their wine glass too.

The A4 poster can be printed on any type of paper, but the wine labels are best printed onto a heavier card-type paper so that they hold their shape.

Feel free to share these freebies by clicking the share buttons below.

Enjoy your spooky weekend!
Sarah x

Monday, 19 October 2015

Missing The British Bake Off?!

20 million people watched a woman baking a cake the other day... 20 MILLION! 

It seems that "The Great British Bake Off" triggers something in so many of us - even my OH sits there casting his opinion on whether they're doing it right (he's never baked a cake in his life).

So if you've got someone in your life who's a keen sifter of flour and whisker of eggs, treat them to something practical and personalised in the hope they bake you something lovely in return (lemon drizzle please):


- all with free UK delivery included

Sarah x

Friday, 16 October 2015

What I love this week...

Turquoise... it has to be one of my all time favourite colours - especially as it seems to have so many personalities:

Quirky but Sophisticated
Bright
Unexpected
Elegant but also Fun & Funky
Calming but Energising
Happy
Warm landscapes and Cool Waters

OK, so maybe turquoise has a bit of a split personality! But I find it's a great colour to add a bit of pepper into a project - whether it's decorating a room, designing a new print, choosing a nail varnish, whatever and wherever.

Which is one of the reasons I was so drawn this week to a page I found on Facebook - The Turquoise Hare. It is packed to the rafters with the beautiful ceramic work of Jan Ellen, based in Poole (a town synonymous with the world of stunning pottery and ceramics). Working mainly in turquoise, but also dabbling in other vibrant shades, her work has a wonderfully simple and very British feel. Ranging from jewellery to wall decorations, each piece is inspired by either the English countryside or seaside (which, being in Poole is no surprise!) and prices start at below £10 (bargain-licious!).

"To take a lump of raw material and form it into a piece of art is very satisfying. Whenever I have a spare moment my studio calls me, (the shed down the bottom of the garden) and I am off to wedge up some clay or glaze a piece calling for colour. My inspiration comes from many sources for the most part it is the sea, what’s on it, in it, and around it, all are captivating and give me endless ideas."

I've selected just a few of my favourites from her Folksy shop, but to be honest her work is such a visual treat that it was very hard to pick these few!

I urge you to give Jan's shop a visit - and if you're on Facebook do give her page a like. You won't be disappointed!

Sarah


Thursday, 15 October 2015

Brand New: personalised 'Word Art' prints


Over the last few weeks I've been busily working on some brand new product ranges to add to the PhotoFairytales site! 

One of the new ranges is my 'Word Art' prints - monochromatic typography prints, featuring vintage images and personalised with your chosen name and date of birth.

I wanted to design something that will work in a child's bedroom or baby's nursery, but which will grow with them as they get older. With positive, inspiring quotes and phrases, I hope that they will make a great gift idea for a new baby, christening, or special birthday.

I am now able to offer prints in two sizes - 8x10" and A3 (I'll be gradually updating most existing print designs so that they are also available in the larger A3 size). Prices start at £14.50, including free UK delivery.

What do you think? I'd love to hear your feedback, so please feel free to leave me a comment!

These new prints can be found on the PhotoFairytales site here: http://photofairytales.co.uk/wordartprints.html


Sarah x

Wednesday, 14 October 2015

20 years today...

In the very year that Ebay started, Mel Gibson dressed in a kilt and spoke (a form of) Scottish in 'Braveheart', and Nick Leeson brought down Barings Bank - me and my hubby got married!

20 years ago today to be exact - which is an astonishing thought. Where have those last 2 decades gone?!!

It was also the year of 'that' interview with Princess Diana, the whole Blur vs Oasis hoohar, Robbie left Take That, and when Eric Cantona decided to show a fan the sole of his boot by kicking him kung-fu style in the middle of a game.

In the last 20 years we've moved home 3 times, lost our beloved Nobby dog, moved in (and out) of the pub business, bought and sold a lovely old (ie, unreliable and nerve-wracking!) VW camper, gained Bella cat and Freddy dog, set up our own businesses - oh, and had a baby who is now about to turn 13!

Champagne for tea tonight I think!!

Sarah x

1: Personalised Timeline print, from £16.50
2: Handpainted personalised Anniversary gift plate, £21.50
3: 'On Our Wedding Day' anniversary print, £25




Tuesday, 13 October 2015

Moving home... a year on

Unbelievably, the first anniversary of our move to our new home passed a couple of weeks ago! It's amazing to think that we've been here a whole year - boy, time flies...

In the time since we've moved in we've pretty much decorated from top to bottom, inside and out. It's a bit dispiriting when you spend ages making your old house look lovely before you put it on the market - and then find yourself having to get on the DIY train all over again when you move into your new home... But (I can say this now that the main part of the DIY journey is coming to an end!!), it HAS been worth it.

We've tamed the overgrown garden (so overgrown it had actually taken over the garage roof too), grassed, fenced, gazebo-repaired, planted and cleaned. And it's now actually a place where (next summer) we'll enjoy sitting out and having the odd BBQ and glass of wine.

We've put down new flooring, painted just about every room (just got the office left to do!), moved furniture around a million times and it's been worth all the aching backs and crunchy knee joints. Mostly!

I am so looking forward to the next year in our home - a year when we can actually spend some time enjoying the house properly, rather than planning the next project. A year when we won't be using paint charts as coasters in every room, and where we can wander into our local Homebase without the staff raising an eyebrow and saying, "back again, ha ha?!".

Home - as they say - Sweet Home!!
Sarah x




Friday, 4 September 2015

Tight? Frugal? Penny Pinching? Money saving? Yep...

Does anybody else keep hold of used batteries just in case, you know, they might come back to life? No? Just me then…

I’ve got a drawer in my desk full of them - mainly because I once discovered that the battery that no longer made my toothbrush work still (weirdly) made my computer mouse work. Don’t ask me how I discovered this - it involved a fair bit of lazy "can’t be bothered to go downstairs" behaviour.

And whilst I was rearranging the batteries in the TV remote last night (because we all know that if you take them out, rub them Aladdin and his lamp style, and put them back in a different order you get another week out of them), it made me wonder if I’m a bit, well, tight?

For example, we need a new frying pan. Now, I don’t use the frying pan very often (it’s main action is seen on Pancake Day - and the odd egg for fried egg sandwiches when the late night munchies strike), so I don’t want to spend a fortune. Plus it has to live at the bottom of the cupboard with all the saucepans stacked on top, so it doesn’t get treated kindly. Therefore, by my reckoning it’s not worth spending a fortune on a new one. I’ve set myself a budget of £3.50. £3.99 at a push. So I’ve spent the last month in every shop that sells frying pans turning my nose up at them because they’re £4.99. (Well, for that pound I could buy a new pack of batteries - at least that’s what I’ve heard, I rarely buy them of course.)

And you know those plastic clippy things you use to seal plastic bags when you put them in the freezer? If I possibly can I don’t use mine - I always try to tie a knot in the bag or use those horrible fiddly wire ties that come with the bags. Why? Well, because the longer I don’t use the clippy things, the longer they’ll last. Obvious!

Am I coming across as a bit weird? Or am I striking a chord with anyone? Anyone??

I like to turning the heating down by just half a degree more if I can… and I don’t like throwing away slightly chipped mugs… and when I decant the handwash out of the bottle into the dispenser I leave it overnight to make sure every drop comes out… I keep trying to get ‘one more nails worth’ out of bald emery boards… I could go on.

It’s my Dad’s fault (see here for full details) - most definitely not mine. But on the upside, I’m not averse to splashing out a whole £4.50 on a bottle of wine sometimes, so I can be quite the spendthrift when the mood is upon me, oh yes siree bob!

Do you have any money saving (penny pinching) tips you can share? Say it loud: I’m tight and I’m proud!!

Sarah x


Friday, 21 August 2015

Brand new range: Wooden Shelf Blocks

Friday night, and here I am working late again - sometimes days and nights tend to blur a little when you run your own business!

But, these beauties just couldn't wait until Monday: I just had to upload them tonight!

These gorgeous new wooden shelf blocks come in a range of colours, handpainted and finished in a lovely chalk finish paint and given a rub down for a shabby finish.

Available in 3 different styles, they'll make a great gift for lots of occasions: new baby, wedding, moving home present, Christmas - you name it!

Only £21.95, they come with free UK delivery - you can see the range on the website here: http://photofairytales.co.uk/woodenplaques.html

Hope you love them as much as me!
Sarah x

Thursday, 20 August 2015

Superfood Radishes: my latest craze!

It was back to work with a bang this Monday after taking a few lovely days off work - no 6am starts, deciding what we were going to do with our day over breakfast, picnics and days out. Smashing.

And every day little food treats - ice cream with a flake? Don't mind if I do! Glass of wine even though it's only 4 o'clock in the afternoon? Actually, I am quite thirsty now I think of it... Fish and chips for tea? Well, we are at the seaside!

So this week I'm making the shift to get back to eating a bit more conscientiously - and to be honest, I was ready to. Funny how your body starts telling you it's time to start giving it some proper fuel... Which means I'm back to my new secret habit: radishes. I flippin' love 'em!

There's no such thing as a lunchbreak here at PhotoFairytales HQ - lunch is something I grab at my desk, usually typing emails at the same time. And although I'm pretty good at dishing up something healthy for dinner, lunches are more of a challenge. Very often its just a quick sandwich (minimal effort, minimal thought) and quite often I'd reach for a bag of crisps too. Hhmmm... not a great choice - then a few weeks ago I had a brainwave: replace those crisps with radishes! And now I'm a little bit hooked on them - they're the perfect alternative for me: they give me something to crunch (like crisps), they're perfect hand-to-mouth food (like crisps), and they've got a stonking hit of flavour (like crisps). They're juicy, crisp and give you a fantastic pop of heat. Some are hotter than others too, so with every mouthful it's a little bit like radish roulette!!

Not only that, but I've since discovered that they have great health benefits too - in fact, they're one of those brilliant superfoods. Obviously I'm no expert, but this is what I've found after doing a bit of research online:


  • Radishes are packed with potassium which helps to lower blood pressure
  • One serving of radishes gives you a third of your daily Vitamin C hit
  • They're also a source of Vitamin B6, magnesium, calcium and zinc
  • They help you to digest fat more efficiently
  • They have great cancer-fighting properties
  • They're great for your kidneys
  • Radishes are low in calories, cholesterol and fat - and they are high in roughage and water which is good if you have digestive problems
  • They helps to relieve congestion when you have a cold or cough
  • They're great for the gallbladder and liver, protecting from infections
  • Radishes are a natural diuretic and great for bladder infections


Phew! These hot, peppery little ruby red balls of juicy crunchiness are most definitely staying as a feature in my lunches for the foreseeable - yum. And what's more, they last well in the fridge - they'll sit in there watching your lettuce turn slimey, and be ready for a quick wash and top-and-tail when you need them.

Sarah :)


Tuesday, 4 August 2015

PhotoFairytales is now on holiday!

Just to let you know that I'm now closed for a few days whilst I'm on my break - I'll be back again on August 17th.

You are still very welcome to place orders via the website while I'm away, but please bear in mind that I won't be able to acknowledge or begin work on them until my return.

Sarah x

Wednesday, 29 July 2015

Happy birthday to me..!!

On this very day - when dinosaurs walked the earth, we all lived in black and white, and children played with hoops (if they weren't scrubbing the insides of chimneys) - I was born.

Yep, it's my birthday today, so I may well be skiving from work just a teensy bit.

Don't ask me how old I am though, because I'm not actually too sure - it involves calculators, dense maths equations, and bearded men with clipboards to work that one out these days. Ah, remember the days when we knew almost to the day how old we were ("I'm 9 and 7/12ths")? - yes, well it all gets a bit vague the older you get. Which is probably just as well...

Sarah x

Tuesday, 28 July 2015

New Baby Name Print Gift: 'Preppy' print

I've added some brand new designs to my 'Meaning of Name' personalised print range - including this new 'Preppy' style print.

Available in a choice of colours, I think the print will work equally well in a baby's nursery and an older child's bedroom too. Something that isn't too 'babyish' and will grow with them!

The prints feature the child's name, along with it's meaning and their date of birth.

You can find the new prints on the PhotoFairytales website here. The prints are just £14.50, including 1st class recorded delivery.

Sarah x

Friday, 24 July 2015

Thursday, 23 July 2015

New personalised Love Print: 'Waves in the Sea'

With summer upon us I think this brand new nautical themed Love Print is a perfect way to say 'I love you' - ideal for a wedding gift, an anniversary present, or just a romantic surprise for the one you love...

Featuring the words "If you want to know how much I love you, count the waves in the sea", and personalised with your choice of names too.

Only £14.50 including 1st class recorded delivery. Find this print with the other personalised Love Prints range here.

Sarah x

Tuesday, 21 July 2015

Those were the days... I think!

Thank goodness for all these austerity cutbacks!

OK, I admit that’s not something you’ll hear me say every day, but stay with me!

Do you remember your twenties? When being invited round to friends for a “dinner party” meant a mince based dish served with lashings of powerful garlic bread. And it didn’t matter one jot what you brought to drink - it could come in a plastic bottle for all anyone cared (and often did). I distinctly remember having a conversation with a male friend about the options for buying beer: cheap so you can drink a lot - vs - expensive and gets you pissed quick. It was an important debate! A time when red-wine mouth and Walls Vienetta for pudding happened regularly. When we all smoked - even those of us that didn’t.

Then the swanky years hit - when “dinner party” meant visiting a wine shop (note: not an “offy”, a “wine shop”). It seemed perfectly OK to take advice from the man in red cords and a pink rugby shirt about “palettes” and “acidity” and “new world”. Food went up a notch and ingredients had to be organic, and “sourced” rather than bought. It was served in Le Creuset, rather than the foil dish it came in when it was pulled from Asda’s freezer section.

And then the recession hit. Or was it children? Or age? Or did we just grow up a bit? Either way, we don’t go to dinner parties anymore. To be honest, I think I’d be too tired. And luckily it seems that most of us have calmed down and found a middle ground somewhere between the two. We can eat (low fat) mince based dishes served with lashings of powerful garlic (ciabatta) bread. Your wine still shouldn’t come in a plastic bottle, but a plastic cork is OK. And the Vienetta? Well, stick a tub of Haagen Dazs in the middle of the table and we can all have another glass of wine while we wait for it to soften enough to get the spoon in...

Sarah x


Monday, 20 July 2015

New Gift Range: New Baby Birth Prints

One of the latest additions to the PhotoFairytales range of gifts are my new personalised Birth Prints...

Available in a choice of different colours, they're a lovely contemporary style print that I think will look gorgeous in the new nursery.

The perfect gift when a new baby arrives, and a really unique present for a christening or naming ceremony too.

Each print features the child's name and date of birth, along with lots of other information such as time, weight, etc. There's even a space for you to add your own lovely message for the recipient that they'll be able to read and treasure when they're older.

Priced at £16.50, including free 1st class delivery. Find them on the website as part of the 'Gifts for Baby' range here.

Hope you like!
Sarah x

Friday, 17 July 2015

What I love this week...

Even the screen cycles through soothing colours....
When I'm sitting hunched and round shouldered straight-backed and posture-perfect at my desk, one of the things that keeps me company (apart from the dog at my feet) is the radio. I've never been able to work in silence - as a child doing my homework I always had to have Scooby Doo/Blue Peter/Rentaghost on in the background...

Music radio is too intrusive I find - plus I nearly always end up with an unwanted earworm while laying in bed at night. So my background noise of choice is talk radio; something I can mentally tune in and out of without too much effort. And the channel I normally choose is Radio 4 (which is, I think, both slightly farty and cool at the same time).

But... I've discovered something this week which has actually worked just as well (and hasn't involved my listening to The Archers tum-tee-tum-te-tum-te-tum, or Gardener's Question Time discussing plum rot, or Woman's Hour talking about the menopause - all of which are very entertaining of course, but sometimes you need a bit of variety eh?!). No, I'm tuning into www.noisli.com - and I love it!

You can control your own soothing background sounds - the pitter patter of raindrops and the wind rustling in the leaves... or tweety birds and the sound of a nearby stream... or a cosy crackling fire with a rumbling thunderstorm. In fact you could have all of those at the same time if you want - and the sound of waves on the sea, crickets chirping at night, and the ambient sound of a coffee shop thrown in too. If you really want!

You can adjust the levels, sending that thunder into the background or bringing up the noise of the rain - tweaking it to your hearts content. Or you can put it on 'random' and it'll cycle through sounds for you.

I had it set on 'thunder-rain-crackling fire' yesterday afternoon which was lovely and cosy (for the middle of July). And right now I'm listening to a forest filled with birds and a gentle breeze. Ahhhh.....and reeeelax.

There, that's my little gift to you for today - enjoy :)

Sarah x

Thursday, 16 July 2015

Gifts for Teachers - what on earth do you get?!

As a mum, I can easily recognise that reports of a massive increase in giving gifts to teachers is certainly true. It seems that many parents now like to give their child’s teacher a gift both at the end of the school year, and at Christmas time too. But the difficulty is, what to give?

Speaking to other parents and teachers, it seems that the most common gift is either a box of chocolates or a plant or bunch of flowers. But, if you want to thank your child’s teacher with a more unusual gift where do you start? Most people work to a budget, and want to give a gift that won’t break the bank. So the search is on for a low cost and unusual gift for your teacher - where to start?!

A great personalised gift can prove to be an ideal solution. Something that raises a smile, or laughter even. Get it right and you could just be finding the perfect gift that ticks all the boxes. Ideally it would be something truly thoughtful that will be treasured, or perhaps something both fun and practical.

Now, if you can do all that you can relax - you’ve done it, you’ve found the perfect gift. Then all you need to worry about is the next gift time…!

Sarah x


Find fun, touching, thoughtful and practical personalised gifts for teachers at www.PhotoFairytales.co.uk/teachergifts.co.uk. Free UK delivery. Bespoke gifts and keepsakes created to order and truly original. Unique gifts for teachers for end of term and Christmas at www.PhotoFairytales.co.uk.


Look - new look!

Look - new look!
OK, so time to breathe a little life back into this neglected corner of the world wide web! 

I'll start by letting you know that the PhotoFairytales website has recently had a huge overhaul (just in case you haven't spotted it yet). It took quite a few weeks to do, but I think the result is a much fresher and brighter look, and it should be easier to move around too.

To go with the new look site there are some new product lines too - and even more in the pipeline. You can see all the new gift ranges on the What's New page - I hope you see something you like.

Oh, and I'm also doing a fab giveaway on the PhotoFairytales Facebook page too - it must end this Sunday, so head on over and take a look. It's super easy to enter, and you get to choose your own prize!

What do you think of the new look - I'd love to hear from you, so feel free to leave a comment below :)

Sarah x

Wednesday, 15 July 2015

Whoops!

Yeeees.... well, it has been a little while between posts hasn't it?

OK, time for an overhaul I think - the PhotoFairytales website has a lovely fresh new look and now so does it's poor old Blog!

A little bit of action will be coming this way imminently, trust me - erm, does anyone have a duster I could borrow first please?

Sarah x
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