Wednesday, 24 August 2011

Brighten your rainy day with Diddybears

With the weather being pretty naff this last few weeks and the choice of 'indoor' stuff wearing thin i remembered that i had downloaded the printable for a 'Design-a-bear' over at Diddybears .
Under the fun and games tab at the top of the page you will find the printable with a gallery of submissions, best design has the chance of being made into a REAL bear too, how cool!!
My girls have spent hours pouring over ideas, sure we have printed out about 20 copies! but it kept them happy and most importantly QUIET!

If you haven't already found Diddybears you are seriously missing out! They find in the palm of your hand but are completely sublime!
You can customise any bear that takes your fancy or commission your own, like i did! I ordered a pair for my husband for our wedding anniversary. The time hasn't come to pass them over yet but they are expertly made and each one has its own personality.
Sure they aren't toys but a beautiful girl for a new baby to grace their room or an heirloom gift to admire forever, or simply for the young at heart.
Service is absolutely fabulous and even on commission turn around is fast. I couldn't be happier with them and i really hope my husband will feel the same.

Her new collection has just hit the shop with LOADS of new colours and designs, Moriarty has to be my favourite! Not to mention the awesomeness that is Rainbow Diddybears!!


If you haven't you NEED to stop by even if its just for a browse, or bookmark for christmas! If you have littlies that enjoy being creative or are just a little fed up then get them on the case!

L xx

Sunday, 21 August 2011

Repaired vintage pieces

It seems not many of you know, but La-chic-unique also undertake all kinds or costume jewellery repair work even on vintage.
Even the smallest jobs like replacing stones or fixing broken links or clasps. These are real bug bears to jewellery wears, especially costume jewellery, as the high street items aren't generally finished off well as they are mass produced so many links will be loose and the clasps damaged before you even get to wear it but fear not, for just £1 an item to repair clasps or links this is the cheapest way of keeping hold of your treasured costume jewellery.
I also repair vintage costume jewellery, so the same again with missing stones, links and clasps, as these are the things that will break first.
I also up cycle, which means you can send me a broken piece, which is unrepairable and refashion it into something else that you can continue to love for many more years.
To utilise this service please use the contact for at La-Chic-Unique or alternatively email me at

So now you know the services i can offer you, how about checking out some up cycled vintage jewellery?

This beautiful vintage engagement ring, is sterling silver and the shank has been gold plated. there is no wear to the shank or damage. absolutely beautiful condition for its age, circa 1940.
The stones will be paste or glass (a vintage version of CZ) but are all secured into the shank with no damage.
When i bought this it has a stone missing but i have replaced it so is now clean and in tact ready to give to your vintage loving hunny or just for treating your self.
A beautiful alternative to a modern engagement ring and if it wasn't to big for my tiny fingers you wouldn't be getting to see it!! POA and more photos are available upon request.

Next up is a beautiful ornate silver tone hair slide. Its on the large side but has simulated pearl in the centre and some cute cabochons on both ends. One side had a missing pearl and I've replaced it with a contrasting blue one, looks really stunning. Perfect for a bride or brides maid, or just for the vintage lover.

£8 including postage.

Thanks for stopping by

L x

Saturday, 20 August 2011

Up Cycled with @beadsmorebylois

The every so lovely Lois from Beads and more by lois, sent me some gorgeous gun metal findings to blog about and they have been sat on my work bench for a few weeks now.
As beautiful as the lovely deep grey findings are i had struggled to find the perfect accompaniment for them and the longer i looked at them the deeper my creative block become.
But after finding 3 huge bags of broken jewellery at a charity shop last week, i found THE most perfect set a damaged beads to use with them.

They are a vintage, twilight blue bead that are circa 1970 i would guess from the way they have been strung, The clasp was broken so i used this gorgeous oval spacer bead to balance out the way the beads hung and reattached a new clasp and the most amazing owl stamping.

As you can see they are short, but with all the glamour at the back it really sets off this beautiful set of strung beads, perfect for an evening event where understated but beautiful is a must!

i feel almost inclined to keep them myself, I've totally in love with the deep colours, makes a fabulous change from the silver , gold and brass and a fabulous addition to your A/W wardrobe.

L xx

What colour is your t shirt Review

Like all little girls my girls love 'shaking their thang' the minute music with a catchy beat comes into ear shot, whether we are at home or out, in the street! And YES they have done that!
So when the lovely people over at Monkey and Bo asked me if i would like them to review a fabulous new collection of children's songs i jumped at the chance, i mean who doesn't love watching mini people hit the dance floor!

So heres a little background on the CD we where sent.

What Colour is your t-shirt?
Music for the under 6's- a collection of 10 original songs for children written and performed by Nick Cope.

The former lead singer of the Oxford band The Candyskins has returned to the music industry and now devotes his time to writing and performing engaging folk-based songs for children.

Nick writes songs about rings that really matter to little ones; jumping in the mud, colours, counting along with monkeys and exploring their surroundings. There's lots of chance for kids to join in!

'What colour is your t-shirt?' is an enjoyable collection of songs the will be loved by both children and their parents.

Now I'm not one for taking the word for all press releases, but this CD does really hit the spot! Its a refreshing take on children's song CD's, believe me we have hundreds and i really didn't feel like my ears would bleed if i sat and listened to it all.
Nick has a lovely voice and the kids really took to it straight away, getting in their and having a good old boogie!
Emma took a particular liking to 'As i lie here in my bed'. She has slight OCD when it comes to brushing her teeth and this really seemed to tickle her.
All the songs where lovely to listen to and the lovely guitar accompaniment was a refreshing change. I would happily recommend this for anyone going on regular car journeys, i can see myself singing along in no time!

Nick now runs popular music and movement sessions weekly for early years in Oxford and he is currently putting together a songbook to accompany the lyrics on his first CD and more. Creating a children's book that is not only a companion to the CD but will also be able to stand alone to read and enjoyed by both parents and children.

He is also putting the finishing touches to his next CD which will include many of his other popular songs such as ' Think of an animal' 'Let's take a walk and 'My socks'.

To find out more about this awesome CD or sessions with Nick please contact Debbie at Monkey and Bo

Shiny New Shop

As some of you may know, some of you have been waiting with bated breath while the rest of you probably have no idea what I'm talking about, finally our new shop and re brand is up and running with a massive great big, bear hugging thanks to the most wonderfullest person Diddybears .

She has turned my painfully, style struggling Mr Site online store into an all singing, vintage, parisian feel wonder store with her design genius!

I can, hand on heart, honestly say i am totally in love with what she has done style wise with the shop. Especially when using the frame its exactly what i had dreamed it would be. It captures the unique beauty in my jewellery and makes it more marketable and accessible for all to see.

Its grown up but pretty and its easy to get lost browsing through the pages of up cycled and vintage jewellery i currently have for sale.

Its let me move a little further away from those like styled items on the web at the more and made it that little more unique to me.

I can now offer more than just jewellery too, gifts and vintage clothing and accessories will be coming soon. As soon as i have stock piled enough to make it worth while offering!

Possibly cake pops and cards, all handmade from other small businesses, will also be available!

This month has been quite successful in way of opportunities, even though sales have been very thin on the ground with the summer holidays in full swing!

We will be offering a subscription offer in Vintage Life Mag, which will be available around christmas time!

We have been at Earth Salon again supplying jewellery for their goody bags.

We have started working more closely with Carrot Top PR.

Our ad will be in Septs issue of the London University Guide.

And we are sending some fabulous goodies over to Daisy Green Mag for a review.

So all go here, loads of charity auction items off to be raffled off for some fabulous causes and new items in the pipe line!

So what ya waiting for, dust off your credit card and set off browsing our shiny new shop

L x

La Chic Unique in conjunction with Earth Salon

This isn't our first encounter with Earth Salon as last month we provided some one off pieces for a fabulous bloggers event they ran.
This month was no exception with a fabulous new product, a goody bag and bags of visitors!
Heres some sneaky pics from the event.
To see our other event with Earth Salon or to see how Carrot Top PR can help your business too then pop over to Carrot Top PR

Sept Countdown

For all my mummy readers i can imagine you are creeping towards the end of your tether (i know i am) with having the kids incessantly nagging at every possible opportunity so the Sept countdown begins!
With only 2 weeks to go for me the nerves are also starting to set in.  This will be Emma's first term at 'BIG' school and as excited as she is I'm absolutely terrified!
Now i know her support is all put in place, the t's have been crossed and the i's dotted but every time i look at her i can't stop worrying!
Am i doing the right thing by her sending her to mainstream school? It doesn't matter how many times people say to me, " its whats best for Emma in the long term" i can't help feeling I'm making a mistake!
Now, knowing me as i do, i know i am completely over reacting! i know she will love it, i know she will flourish but she's my baby and she's not ' school ready'!
She is still refusing to use the toilet at home, as much as her language skills are progressing beautifully she still isn't talking as id like for her age, and as we are STILL waiting for appointments regards her health we are just stuck in limbo while they get their finger out their ass and sends us an appointment!!
So for all you first time school mums out there, breath deep and practice not crying!! As in a few weeks that tiny person will suddenly not need you quite as much ... it'll be a sad day indeed!
Also...WOOHOO we'll be able to drink a whole brew thats still actually warm!!!

L xx

Monday, 15 August 2011

Daily Lust

so with autumn creeping in (my god hasn't it been chilly for aug?!!) I've been dreaming of chunky knits and riding boots.
I've found (through hours of ebay shopping!) i am totally in love with preppy style this season, with its heritage patterns and materials with chunky knits and tan leather.
maybe its the country bumpkin in me trying to escape, or i see myself as a skinny beauty, head to toe in expensive clobber (I'm not btw!), i don't know but theres something about Jack Wills that is TOTALLY floating my boat right now!
From the new Autumn collection (and the preview is ITTY BITTY!) this blazer has to be my all time have, i just wish i could justify the £229 price tag and I'm totally in love!

Beautiful classic tailoring with the double breasted fit. MUST RESIST......

I discovered Joules not long ago, (also from scouring ebay!) and OMG! Again with the hefty price tag but the quality is amazing and their classic cuts are right up my street! (yes i know I've said that before but well, I'm getting old and i wanna look like i haven't been ravaged by 3 pregnancies and years worth of sleepless nights!)

So my faves from their autumn preview are these two beauties.

Im totally in love with gilets right now, i don't know how practical they really are, I'm yet to own one! but they are totally gorgeous! Especially this one from Joules. £99.95 i didn't think was overly expensive for this, the cut is amazingly flattering and the detailing is amazing, brass buttons, flashes of sued and the pockets are to die for!!

I am totally lusting after this mallard jumper, so cute and casual and a childish take on an classic icon. This will set u back £69.95 but seriously who doesn't want this!!!

Ive been wearing Abercrombie and Fitch for years, yes even before every chav and trampy girl on the planet jumped on the band wagon!
They detailing is amazing and the cuts are so flattering its unbelievable! The sizes can be a bit off with them manufacturing everything in US sizes but find what fits and stock up cos they last for an eternity!!
This however has to be my fave sweater at the mo...

Slightly shorter than i like but with some tan straight leg jeans and loafers... HOT! It is however £150 but will see you through every winter for the next ten years without blinking an eye!!
Now please excuse me while i find some to die for flats to go with my new outfit!!!

L x

LetterBox Collage Review

The wonderful people over at Letterbox, sent the girls this amazing Collage Kit for them to review, its here on their website.
Now to be honest, i think i had more fun than they did!
The cute little box had all the goodies, lovingly wrapped up inside ready to use.
As you can see they where a little eager to get started!
This is what the website says about this cute little kit.

Create your first collage with this cute kit

A box full of crafty bits and pieces for first collages ?four envelopes contain all the pieces you need to make and decorate each cute animal character template and there are easy to follow picture guides and a glue stick. Age 4 to 8

Our youngest is 2 and she had a whale of a time with this! She struggled a little getting the larger pieces to stay stuck with the glue stick but apart from that all three girls from 2 through 7 thoroughly enjoyed every minute of this, including me and I'm 28!!

There is wonderful, clear instructions to follow with lovely images for none readers to follow. Which by the way was really helpful for my 4 year old, having additional needs she felt confident following the images without my help, if only all toys, games and art kits would follow suit id be a VERY happy mother.

It took us about an hr to complete an animal each. We didn't rush and i dragged it out for a long as possible, but there are 4 cards inside so easily an afternoons crafting if you are clever and make them take time with each step etc.

They where very pleased with their finished creations and the younger two did take all the pieces off before the glue dried and replaced them a few times which gave them another hours worth of enjoyment.

These kits are available from Letterbox for just £12. They include everything that you need to make the four animals included in the box, including glue and straw etc.
The quality is outstanding and this would make a beautiful gift for a birthday party as well as a rainy day at home.
I urge you to get one, i even kept the box it came in for art supplies now their finished pictures are adorning my fridge!
Fun was had all round and as a mother i was really impressed with the quality. Most kits we have had in the past have been cheap materials and end up ripped and tatty and thrown in the bin within minutes. With these they look great even if they haven't been stuck in the correct places and seeing them up on the fridge the girls really felt proud of the time they had spent on them.
This defiantly something i would personally go out of my way to buy and i would happily give and receive as a gift.
A huge thanks to Letterbox for letting us have lots of fun with this wonderful kit.

Rockfords Rock Opera

Rockford's Rock Opera is a unique audio adventure for children and adults. With an amazing, original ecological story, great songs, narration, sound effects, CGI videos and illustrations all delivered via the web, Rockford's Rock Opera a new breed of 21st century, ipod friendly, audio-visual entertainment.
Think 'Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy' crossed with 'Jeff Wayne's War of the Worlds', 'Jungle Book' meets 'Jurassic Park'.
But, Rockford's Rock Opera is NOT the creation of a global entertainment company jumping on the 'green bandwagon'. It is the work of award winning charitable entrepreneurs, 'Sweetapple', ( and a handful of dedicated people working for the love of an amazing, original story. The project was created in an attic in Barnet, North London, and is entirely self produced and financed.
Featuring and scripted by respected BBC writer and performer, Steve Punt, this is a story is a story with a message - a unique 'take' on the threat of extinction and the effect man is having upon life on earth.
And it's a tale that's already attracting an exceptional response. Since its on-line launch in January 2008 and entirely by 'word of mouth' over 400,000 people have downloaded the story and over 8,000 schools across the world are using the audio story and resources as the basis for ecological lessons, activities, and school plays. 
(STATISTICS AS OF SEPT 1st 2009 - please contact us for the latest figures)

Writing in The Times, audiobook reviewer, Christina Hardyment said:
"Rockford's Rock Opera is an amazing mix of story, songs and sound effects. It has a freshness that makes you smile as you listen and could become a cult favourite as beloved as Wallace and Gromit."
And, in The Guardian's review, Sue Arnold wrote:
"For years I've distributed presents of Peter and the Wolf to children starting flute/clarinet/piano lessons. This year I'm breaking new ground with this thoroughly modern musical for kids... an ingenious story."

What's it About?
Far away in the Sea of Tranquillity lies the Island of Infinity, home to the last one of every extinct species.
Infinity has a secret for the world but Moog, a boy from Battersea in London, and Rockford his dog, are the only one who can deliver its message. Travelling to Infinity Moog and Rockford get drawn into an adventure in sound that threatens the entire human race.
Crucially, the Rockford's Rock Opera website contains loads of information about the threats currently faced by creatures and plants across the world together with lesson plans and resources, plus information about organisations that are trying to make a difference.
Matthew Sweetapple, co creator of Rockford's Rock Opera, explains:
"On one hand Rockford's Rock Opera is simply a great adventure for all ages but we hope, once they've heard our story, that listeners - children and adults - will want to know more about the real issues. The story does have an entirely original and persuasive view of extinction."
Although the Rockford's Rock Opera audio book has many young fans, it is not simply a children's story. Anyone who enjoys great music with an original story will find escape in the unique tale.
Rockford's Rock Opera is not a traditional 'stage musical' with hammy songs, its diverse musical inspiration can be found in The Beatles, The Small Faces, (early) Genesis, XTC and works such as Roger Glover's 'Butterfly Ball', and Harry Nilssen's 'The Point'.

How to discover Rockford's Rock Opera?
  • The whole of Rockford's Rock Opera Part One (52 minutes in total) is available as a free audio book to download, podcast and to stream FREE on the web.
  • Then, if you like what you hear, you can buy Parts 2 and 3 on CD or as downloads.
  • The show is also now going live in UK theatres - email us for details.

I was surprised how the girls took to this, as i had not really had the chance to listen to it myself, but they really enjoyed listing to the wonderful story which is accompanied by the most amazing orchestral music.
It really has opened up their horizons when it comes to music, I've noticed how they have noticed more orchestral music in adverts etc since taking the time to listen to this,
To be honest, their attention span with this is pretty limited though, but as we don't drive it limits the time they will sit still with nothing to look at.
The art work isn't the greatest but to be fair you don't really notice the box once you are snuggled down, whilst being transfixed by the music.
We still haven't finished the entire cd but they listen to it regular. Would love to see maybe some moving images or a slide show on their that moves along with the story to keep them listening that little longer at home.
The website is wonderfully informative with a shop and a podcast, which i think is an amazing addition. The website isn't the greatest, and could really do with some amazing design and to be better accessible for children. Maybe some printables to drive children to the site as they are the ones who get the most from this.
Over all a fabulous and unique take on a story time CD!

Saturday, 6 August 2011

NEW enamelled jewellery

Ive made some limited enamelled pieces, really just for a bit of variety and for , the lovers of simple yet different jewellery.
There is 2 more designs coming soon..

L xx

Handmade year entry approx 3 months

With the school holidays now in full swing i seem to have found a whole new love for this again! i have been really good tho and still only buying from charity shops where i can and making gifts etc and bits for the girls.
Today i have been on a total roll! Ive made a start on Emmas school bag. I did intend to buy her one off ebay, the Cath Kidston oilcloth ones are DIVINE!! but i also had a thought maybe, for her, having something completely one off would help her find her bag when at school without having to struggle to ask to find it.
I used an old skirt in a gorgeous brown tweed then used a roxy summer kaftan i had "outgrown" lol for lining. I had found the tutorial on the net but when i came to use it i just kinda did my own thing! I'm really happy with how its turning out, as i have never made bags before (scary!!) I just need to press it, sew on the straps and I'm going to make a cross stitch monogram button to sew on with a giant E on so she knows its her SPECIAL bag!

i tried my hand at making a little coin purse for Elissa, as she's going thru that, 'I'm a grown up' stage! Im not 100% happy with it but its cute and it doesn't matter if she looses it!!

i used a skirt of emmas she has outgrown and used a little scrap of rose fabric to line the flap, it has a little velcro fastening. i didn't use a template or anything i just cut it out and hoped for the best! lol

My bargain of the week is this fabulous leather, topshop doctors bag i picked up for £6 in a charity shop. Slightly more than id normally spend to be fair but i fell in love with it!! Tho it is HUGE and could quite easily pack essentials for a day out!!

And finally for today, i up cycled this old bar stool i had lying around for my sewing machine as my large chair i use when making jewellery isn't the right height for my machine. This however is perfect. Its been primed then painted with a very pale pink emulsion then i recovered the hideous seat with cream spotty oil cloth! however, i ran out of staples when i was almost finished so it isn't pulled as tight as i would normally like but its easily replaced!

Well its almost feeding time at the zoo, i hope something has inspired you today!

L xx

Friday, 5 August 2011

Multi Pearl Bracelets

As some of you may have noticed, i have deleted the Chic Unique only blog, i just don't have enough time to split myself that may times over so everything will be here, in one place for you all to see :)
So to replace the pearl bracelet post some photos of past commissions are viewable here.

All bracelets are one off and customised to your specification. Prices start at £10. contact me via twitter @chicuniqueuk or email to order

L x

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

Childrens Jewellery Making

As you know i have mini, girl people, 3 of in fact and like all mini people they enjoy getting stuck in! Especially my mini people, and nothing much gets past them!
So this morning while i was finishing my rainbow cluster bracelets Emma came to join me, so i handed over some beads and some string and left her to it! And while i was preoccupied with my own creativity look what she made!!

Now for 4 years old (obviously she didn't tie it off) She rivals a lot of these "newbies" that are knocking about at the mo trying to enter the market! Maybe i should hire her as staff!!
And as usual the others then jumped on the band wagon and so i let Zoe have a go!!

ok so Zoe is almost 2 and of course didn't string this but she chose all the beads and the order, kinda funky if you ask me!!!
Which now of course has given me an awesome idea for children's jewellery kits to make at home with mum, or dad, or big sister/brother! or any other "responsible" adult!
Watch this space for new children's jewellery kits!!

L xx