all shiny and new…

I must say it feels a lot like Christmas at Handmade By me at the moment with all the new exciting products and samples that we have been trialling and testing of late. Now that we have our own retail space, we get to explore all sorts of different products which we can stock and display at the same time. We also love to make sure that we have lots of lovely new things in our shop to keep our loyal customers coming back for more.

One of the most exciting things we have started making (maybe it’s just the cute baby photos) are our muslin baby blankets. Made with a beautiful soft 100% cotton muslin, these blankets are 1m x 1m in size, and are available in 3 designs – Prickly Pears, Pretty Proteas and Pink Flamingo. Whether you use it as a swaddle, sunshade, nursing cover, play mat, or burp cloth, these blankets, quite literally, have you covered. You can order directly from the Handmade By Me online shop or pop into our store on De Lorentz St in Tamboerskloof.

babymuslin2

We are also busy making some small muslin bags and squares that can be used for cooking. Muslin is a handy piece of material to have in the kitchen, especially as it can be washed, dried and continually reused. The cook’s muslin is a natural, finely-woven fabric often used when filtering or straining.

muslinbags_proteas

Thanks to The Essential Ingredient, here are some of the many ways muslin can be used in the kitchen:

  • Straining liquids to filter out any impurities (such as stocks or consommé)
  • Hanging cooked fruit to separate out liquid, essential for creating quince or apple jellies or marmalades
  • Making cheese; squeezing liquid whey from the cheese curd
  • Filtering aged wines or port for decanting, removing any sediment
  • Soak muslin in butter and cover turkey or chicken breasts while roasting to keep them moist
  • Strain yoghurt for a few hours to thicken it into labna (eaten in Lebanese homes for every breakfast)
  • Wrap grated zucchini, potato, beetroot or carrot in muslin to easily squeeze out all excess moisture
  • Straining peppercorns, herbs and shallots from vinegar in a classic béarnaise sauce
  • Muslin cloth is essential when creating your own tofu from soy beans
  • Combine cream cheese and ricotta and strain into a classic Coeur à la crème
  • Wrap lemon or lime halves in muslin and place in the centre of the table for easy squeezing without pips or pulp
  • Make your own tea bags for an interesting morning tea spread
  • Line your bowl with muslin when proving bread dough to eliminate the need for excess flour or oil
  • Create a muslin bag filled with herbs and aromatics, for easy retrieval after making stock, soup or a classic sauce

IMG_9199

We have also introduced a new product to our range – greeting cards. We chose 10 of our favourite designs, printed them onto A6 card, and then packaged them into individual sets together with a plain white envelope. Have a look at the full range here.

We also found out recently that our phone covers are now available in a clear plastic option which takes any white or light colour used in the design and prints it clear. Here, you can see below, we tested out our Geometric Monochrome design for the iPhone 6. What do you think?

image1 (1)

This week we tested our first samples of melamine trays and pot stands in our designs, and we are SO impressed with how well they turned out! Not only are they so pretty and useful, they are also practical, and can handle up to 120C (248 F), are dishwasher-safe and scratch and stain resistant! These will be available to order very soon.

image1 (2)

We finally managed to shoot our Prickly Pears and African Aloes tote bags and purses and upload them to our online shop.

And while we are talking about all things new, our first Handmade By Me + Windowsill collaboration products, in conjunction with the talented Alexis Snell, are ready and available to buy exclusively from our shop in Cape Town. These beautiful limited edition linocut prints come all the way from the UK and we are selling them framed (in soldered glass) or unframed. We just LOVE them.

13177516_854958621276834_4690221751110055194_n13174216_854958624610167_1685656348966821363_n

And speaking of our shop, for this week only we have a new special on offer:  the perfect gift – an aloe potted in to graphite glazed terracotta and an orange squares tea towel for only R350. Only while stocks last! For more special offers, sales and events, follow us on facebook.

image1 (5)

Find out more:
website: www.handmadebyme.co.za
facebook: www.facebook.com/handmadebymeblog
twitter: @handmadebymeSA
online shop: shop.handmadebyme.co.za
retail shop: www.facebook.com/handmadebymeandwindowsillshop

 

 

Handmade By Me + Windowsill studio/showroom/shop opens its bright yellow doors

New Handmade By Me + Windowsill studio and showroom has just opened its bright yellow doors in the heart of Cape Town.

Handmade By Me has teamed up with plant specialist Windowsill, to open up a new studio and showroom just off bustling Kloof Street in Cape Town. We would love to invite you to come and visit us and experience our new space!

This isn’t the first time Handmade By Me and Windowsill have teamed up, for the past two years, we’ve showcased our unique products together at KAMERS in Cape Town and Stellenbosch. We’ve often discussed the idea of opening up something more permanent, so when the teeny, tiny space on De Lorentz Street opened up, we knew it was meant to be! With no budget, a month’s notice and a whole lot of paint, we transformed a small gift shop into a jungle treasure trove of beautiful plants, textiles and one-off products.

The space serves as a working studio space and showroom, where we stock samples of made-to-order items, and products available for immediate purchase.

Here’s what you can expect to find at the Handmade By Me + Windowsill studio/showroom/shop:
– a unique collection of interior and decor-related textile products and fashion accessories
– rare and different plant specimens and planters
– collaborative products from handmade By Me and Windowsill
– fabric and wallpaper swatches and cuttings
– sale items and special offers
– a cup of tea and a chat with the owners
– parking

Address: 21 De Lorentz Street, Tamboerskloof, Cape Town.
Opening hours: Tues-Fri 11-6pm, Sat 9:30-1pm.
Contact: https://www.facebook.com/handmadebymeandwindowsillshop/

We’d love for you to stop by!
Sera (& Alex)

HMBMWS_2

Find out more:
website: www.handmadebyme.co.za
facebook: www.facebook.com/handmadebymeblog
twitter: @handmadebymeSA
shop: shop.handmadebyme.co.za

Our studio/showroom/shop is open!!!

We are just so super duper over-the-moon excited that our studio/showroom/shop, which we are sharing with our friends Windowsill – plants and flowers, is now finally ready and open for business! We finished off the final touches this week and we couldn’t be happier!

Here are a few pics we shared on our instagram feed over the past week below. Please come and pop in for browse or a cup of tea, you are all very welcome.

HMBMWS_Shop

IMG_8736

IMG_8737

The address is 21 De Lorentz St, Tamboerskloof, Cape Town. Our opening hours are Tues-Fri 11-6pm and Sat 9-1pm. We hope to see you very soon!

Find out more:
website: www.handmadebyme.co.za
facebook: www.facebook.com/handmadebymeblog
twitter: @handmadebymeSA
shop: shop.handmadebyme.co.za

 

 

We’re opening up a studio & showroom!

So this is the VERY exciting news that we wanted to share with you a week ago. Yes, it is true, we have signed the lease and are going to be opening up our first ever studio & showroom just off Kloof Street in Cape Town with our friends Windowsill Plants and Flowers in March!!!

Alex from Windowsill is one of my nearest and dearest and oldest friends, and ironically she reminded me that we had in some way already put our plans in to motion when we were just 12 years old. Here, she explains our story – “In 1992, two 11 year olds made friends with each other and made a promise that one day they would work at St Elmo’s Pizza at night, and during the day they would work at The Bubble Shop. 23 years later – the Bubble Shop no longer exists, and St Elmo’s is a bit of dive – SO TODAY, Sera Holland and I are officially shopkeepers. Yes folks – Handmade By Me and Windowsill THE shop IS happening!!!!”

We cannot wait!!!!

We have also had some other very exciting news in the past few weeks. Handmade By Me is now being stocked by two of our very favourite shops. They are both completely different but relate to one of our two favourite and most droolworthy subjects, fashion and food.

On the fashion side, we couldn’t be more honoured and excited to have a selected range of our products now available from top local fashion label, Klûk CGDT. Their boutique on Bree St is one of the most beautiful we’ve seen, and they have now started stocking a small range of premium decor related products which work alongside and compliment their own sensational creations. So now you have no excuse not to pop in and see it all for yourself.

Screen Shot 2016-02-08 at 16.13.15

12495206_10153232709672204_5604976438351676695_n

“The KLûK CGDT brand is well known for the sophistication in design and fabrication and their uncompromising standards in service and quality. They produce 6 collections a year, which they sell through their boutiques in JHB, Cape Town and now Pretoria as well as trunkshows across Africa. They are equally well known for their bridal and couture gowns both locally and internationally and have won awards for their “Red Carpet Style”. Special consideration is taken for each bride individually. “ Bridalwear is not like fashion, it represents a dream with a lifetime of expectations, and this is what we strive to fulfil”.”

 

The other is our favourite foodie-related award-winning online shop, Yuppiechef. They have the most insane selection of desirable cooking equipment, novelty-inspired cooking gadgets (my personal favourite) and hard-to-find cooking ingredients – and now they are stocking a selection of our patterned napkins and tea towels as well. This shop is also my personal favourite place to off-load eBucks : )

thumb

Screen Shot 2016-02-08 at 16.16.08

Yuppiechef is on a mission to bring people together through the cooking and sharing of good food. We believe that preparing, cooking and sharing a meal with good company is the very essence of what makes life good. And it is our dream to give you every excuse under the sun to organise that long overdue get-together with those you love, and those you’d like to love more. Yuppiechef is a food community offering you the tools, ingredients and the inspiration to cook real food at home.”

And while we’re sharing the good news, Plascon Spaces recently showed us some playful workspaces on their blog – each showcasing Plascon hues. Our Origami Birds cushion, available from PRESENTspace, was featured in their ” A grey solution – monochromatic shades and typography make a clean canvas on which to unleash your creativity.” We love it!

origami birds plascon

Find out more:
website: www.handmadebyme.co.za
facebook: www.facebook.com/handmadebymeblog
twitter: @handmadebymeSA
shop: shop.handmadebyme.co.za

 

Introducing our new range of designs and products

So it’s taken us a little bit longer than we anticipated, but finally we are able to show you some of the product shots of Handmade By Me’s newest range of designs and products.

For the Prickly Pears and African Aloes range, we have introduced these designs across our full range of products including our beautiful LUX Panama Cushion Covers which we sold out of at Kamers recently.

PricklyPearsAndAfricanAloes

We also teamed up these two designs with our Pretty Proteas and Striking Strelitzias designs to bring you our full Cape Floral Kingdom range.

CapeFloral

The LUX panama cushion covers are our premium range of cushion covers made using our luxurious quality 100% cotton panama fabric. This fabric is thick and soft, and we have cushion covers available in 60x60cm, and 60x40cm on request. We can also supply you with feather/down inners on request.

NewProducts

We have also introduced a little something for our favourite teeny tiny little customers, Nappy Covers.  These have been made using our beautiful soft 100% cotton. They are available in 5 designs and in 4 sizes: 3-6 months, 6-12 months, 12-18 months and 18-24 months.

We are also very excited about our new reusable placemat designs, Birds of Paradise and Victoriana, which will be available alongside our Delft and Imari placemat designs in December. Please note that these are available to pre-order in the mean time.

Big 5 poster

You may have seen some pics of our Big 5 range for kids on our social media feeds lately. In Africa, the big five game animals are the African lion, African elephant, Cape buffalo, African leopard, and White/Black rhinoceros. The members of the Big Five were chosen for the difficulty in hunting them and the degree of danger involved, rather than their size.

The Big 5 range is available in 50x50cm cushion covers and reusable placemats at the moment, and we will hopefully be introducing these designs in the nappy covers shortly.

For the reusable placemats, each placemat has been laminated so you can use them over and over again, and then when you finally get sick of them you can turn them into face masks in just 3 easy steps. Each set of 5 contains one of each of the Big 5 animals. How fun would a kids party be with these guys!

To make sure that the placemats can easily be turned into face masks, I had to test them out and make a face mask out of each placemat design. Here’s how its done:

Big5_Placemats_Instructions_Rhino

And here is me as the Rhino : )

12046830_716241361840402_4094539742060256995_n

All the above and more are available to purchase at the Handmade By Me online shop. Please note that we ship locally and internationally : )

Find out more:
website: www.handmadebyme.co.za
facebook: www.facebook.com/handmadebymeblog
twitter: @handmadebymeSA
shop: shop.handmadebyme.co.za

10% off to say thank you…

Thank you so much to everyone who came to visit us at our stand at 100% Design at Decorex in Joburg. It was a fantastic week where we were really honoured and proud to have been a part of such a high-end selection of top designers and makers from around the country. We were also really proud to have had a product selected for 100 Beautiful Things 2015 in association with Visi magazine. The product selected was our new luxury 60x60cm Geometric Orange cushion cover using our upholstery weight cotton panama fabric with a feather/down inner.

11822453_684650124999526_1367133056059997509_n

We really had the best time and loved meeting all of you. So much so that we have decided to extend our 10% off all our products to our online shop till the end of next weekend. Yes thats right, 10% percent off everything until midnight Sunday 23 August. Just enter the discount code “WinterWarmer” at checkout.

11258228_685851741546031_2104720000742830028_n

For those of you missed us at 100% Design, here are a few pics from our stand at the show.

11811331_684382965026242_4204745931005240410_n

100percentdesign

We also launched some cool new products, which we are shooting this week, which we will share with you right here real soon!

Find out more:
website: www.handmadebyme.co.za
facebook: www.facebook.com/handmadebymeblog
twitter: @handmadebymeSA
shop: shop.handmadebyme.co.za

may media love

We have had some really great media love for the month of May and we wanted to share it all with you here. First up is this really great shoot and feature in Sarie magazine. I love what they did with my products for the shoot below, and am so very flattered to have been given a full page feature, and to be featured alongside some really talented designers.

sarie may 15 2 sarie may 15

Then Ideas magazine did a shoot using bits and pieces of fabric from local designers. See if you can spot our indigo Blue fabric featured here below.

ideas may 15 2 ideas may 15

And then one of our friends discovered one of our phone covers in the Mango Airline inflight magazine, Juice, and sent us these pics. Our lovely Midnight Blue Mosaic phone cover made it onto the Ed’s Choice : )

Mango Juice 2

Mango Juice 1

Don’t forget about the feature in this month’s Elle Decoration magazine that we showed you last week, where you still have a chance to win one of our Pretty Protea Chef Aprons. In case you missed it you can check it out here.

Then great news for all you Joburg peeps, we are going to be exhibiting some of our new products along with the CCDI (Cape Craft and Design Institute) at Inspire Trade Expo in Johannesburg from 10-12 June. For more info about the event, check out their website www.inspiretradeexpo.co.za

11246175_1070865006274734_68929104254614201_n

Find out more:
website: www.handmadebyme.co.za
facebook: www.facebook.com/handmadebymeblog
twitter: @handmadebymeSA
shop: shop.handmadebyme.co.za