Stina’s Pepparkakor

A while back we talked about Small Business Saturday and were thinking what we could do this year. Last year we had an competition and then I suggested homebakes. Everyone love Swedish baked treats…right!!!

Then Stina said she like to bake gingerbreads and sell them and so we did. Stina has worked so hard for this. I made her the gingerbread dough, she made her own labels and was very concerned while baking her gingerbreads. It had to be just right thickness and shapes and so on. And she is so proud of herself and I am too. This is a great way of learning to work for something and earn your own money. No this is not going to charity but her dream holiday. For years she has nagged us to go to Disneyland Paris and we have said one day, but you need to save some of your money for spending money while there and wow has she worked hard for this.

Please join us today this Small Business Saturday to celebrate the start of the lovely cosy month of December. I personally love December, it is a great atmosphere at the shops, and at home all my advent lights are up and the house often smell amazing with all the Christmas bakes.

Here is my (well Stina’s) recipe for tasty Swedish pepparkakor.

Swedish Pepparkakor
  • 300 g butter (I used Lurpak)
  • 5 dl caster sugar
  • 1 dl syrup
  • 2 tbsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp ground cloves
  • 1 tbsp ground ginger
  • 2 tbsp ground cardamon (top tip, flying tiger is selling this ready)
  • 1 tbsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 2 dl cold water
  • 1.5 L plain flour (I used about 1 – 1.2 L and then saved some for the baking
  • (A dl is a decilitre, so equal to 100 ml)

    Soft butter (leave it out for some time) mixed well with sugar and syrup.

    All spices and bicarbonate in the mix, finally water and flour. Do not put all the flour in straight away but add some at the time to get a good firm dough, if too much flour it will be very dry and not tasty.

    Leave in fridge for at least 24 hours.

    Then baking time, use flour to make sure the dough does not stick to the table, but not too much then the gingerbreads get too dry. All about LAGOM :)

    OVEN 200-225 °C, time 4-5 minutes.

    Be careful and keep an eye on them, try to put the same sizes and thickness on the same tray. Also avoid fan oven, I did one and that one burnt (!!). Put someone on oven duty!

    Once out of the oven, let them swiftly cool down on a rack grid. Enjoy with a glass of cold milk (might be needed if you eat a lot of dough while baking)

    Charlotte x


    Time To Shine

    Ok, it’s that time of year again when I feel it’s my duty to put my mum hat on with you all (don’t worry, you’re not in trouble and I’ve brought snacks.)

    It’s November. I know, don’t get me started on time flying and all that, but c’mon, where does it go? This time of year can be beautiful and recently we have been treated to some stunning Edinburgh sunrises and sunsets and the kind of cold, crisp weather that keeps me here. However November sunsets inevitably lead to only one thing – darkness! Even at this very moment I am in the shop, it’s 3.20pm and I can see the light fading outside. Any minute now the kids will be excitedly belting out of school and this year, as ever, we have just the thing to help keep them (and you) safe on the journey home.

    A reflector is an essential safety item for anyone who is spending time outside in low visibility conditions. It can reflect the light from an oncoming vehicle and make you visible from up to 125 meters (400 feet) away, compared to only 30 meters (100 feet) away without one and that really could make all the difference.

    We have stocked reflectors for many years and we love a delivery of the bright happy designs. At the moment our chosen brand is Firefly as we have found they are well made, stylish, fun and most importantly super reflective. Designed in Sweden they really are fantastic and deliver what they promise – great visibility. I have loads, my kids have loads, my dog Boo has probably more than she needs but hey, she’s black and totally invisible when walking at night! I love the Bowie style lightning bolt (I have a sticker one on my jacket and a chain one on my bag.) My kids might think they’re too cool for reflectors now they are teens but still have them on their bags and probably need them more since they are out by themselves so much. My favourite at the moment is the new tassel reflector. They are gorgeous and come in a variety of colours each with a sturdy clip and a heart charm – I think Boo is in for another little treat!

    Competition winners!


    Oh thank you all for coming to see us during our birthday celebrations and thank you for entering or 8 years, 8 days, 8 prizes competition! Thank you for signing up for our newsletter, to be honest newsletter has always being at the bottom of my list but it is time to change that because I think it is a nice way to stay in touch with a company/brand you like.

    By using we have found our eight winners who will all be contacted privately by email.

    Once again thank you all so much for your love and support. We have now entered our busy month preparing for the most wonderful festival season in our shops. If everything goes according to plan our Christmas shop will open on Monday the 22nd October at 10 am. I am planning a Christmas shop grand opening event as well, but that will be announced once it is all organised. But first I still have a few Christmas orders to place. However for the next 20 days pop in an enjoy our cosy Autumn shops. If you are cold, well we got the wool blankets, if you are in hunt for a gift, well we got gorgeous Scandi designs :)

    Charlotte xx

    Spektakulär IN-STORE competitions

    img_20180925_201403_079-1578346627.jpg8 YEARS – 8 DAYS – 8 PRIZES

    It’s our 8th birthday this September and we are treating you all with lovely competition prizes as a thank you!

    Yes we have gone old school and are doing a birthday IN-STORE competition, because we really like you to come and visit us :) For all the clicks and likes we get on social media, we still enjoy when people to come in and see us in the shop, we love a good chat!

    All you have to do is to come inside the shop any of days until Saturday the 29th September and say hi, sign up for a news letter and that makes you enter our competition. You only have to do it once, you automatically enter to win either of all eight prizes. If you really really don’t want to sign up for the newsletter, that is ok too. It will still be nice to see you.

    So what are the prizes then you ask???!!!!

    1. The Sagaform Oval Oak Red Wine Carafe (one of first designs in the shop and still one of our best sellers)
    2. A Spira of Sweden Face (Friend) Cushion with a feather inner cushion
    3. A Lindform Candle holder with your choice of a Ester & Erik candle
    4. A Maileg superhero mouse in his suitcase
    5. Bakeland: Nordic Treats Inspired by Nature cook book
    6. A pair of Sence Copenhagen Ear Rings (of your choice, of what in store)
    7. A Plus Plus Learn to Build Set
    8. A Stelton To Go cup 0.2L (of what in store)

    I would also take this opportunity to say thank you to everyone who came to the shop on Saturday for our birthday celebrations. We had teamed up with wonderful Söderberg so tons and tons of Swedish buns and they all went :)

    Did you know they recently open a new shop/bakery on Morningside Road? Go and check it out, great coffee, fab treats and a stunning setting. The perfect place to meet up for a fika!

    We are very very grateful to you all for your love and support during these last eight years. We are working hard to bring the best designs we can find and have a friendly, stylish store with character, but can only be a success with your support!

    Thank you all

    Charlotte and Richard xxx

    Eight years of Spektakulär!!


    Oh yes we are eight! Wow just need to think about that one a little. Eight years…wow!


    Our opening day 18.09.2010

    And what an amazing and challenging eight years it has been. Huge learning curves, plenty mistakes. But all the knowledge that I have gained, (yes I do doubt my knowledge sometimes even though I know I shouldn’t) I am proud of that education.  What I value the most of everything I have experienced during these eight years,  it would be the people I have met. Many customers have become personal friends, and all the help and love that we receive from suppliers and fellow shop owners  is truly powerful. We are not alone in this world of retail, we are a good gang and along the way I have collected friends who we collaborate with, to help each other grow both as businesses and as people. Eight years along the road I am truly, and I mean truly, grateful for all the fantastic support our customers have given us and encouragement during difficult times. And thank you for coming back!

    I am treating you tonight with some before and after pictures from the shop. We found lots of me but no I did not do pregnant beautifully. Stina was born in October 2010 so I was pretty large…no that is an understatement I was humongous and I really do not want to share those photos.


    Wow so much fabric, and such calming and gentle colours

    When Stina was just a couple of months fast asleep under her blanket
    Stina, a few months old modelling our favourite Cloud blankets

    Advent Star
    Our very first Christmas star! 2011


    We quickly decided that colour was our way forward and we are so happy we became a colourful shop, still Scandi though


    Scandi Christmas
    We are getting better at our            Scandi Christmas 2012

    Stina’s little sister Lovisa April 2013

     Shop had a repaint a tidy and it gave us a blank canvas to rethink new ideas…

    2016 Lilla was opened, Lilla which mean Little in Swedish was our Childrens’ shop and I was so incredible proud of this colourful, happy little gem. Sadly this year we had to take the tough decision to fold Lilla back into the rest of the business and have two Spektakulär shops where we could display our stock the way we wanted.

    Image by lovely Aleichia W

    Today we have Spektakulär HOME and Spektakulär GIFT. But soon very soon this beautiful shop will become our best ever idea. A full on Scandi/Nordic Christmas shop!! We cannot wait because we love to come to work during the Christmas season, the shops are soooooo cosy and I love being there early just sitting eating my breakfast enjoying all the Swedish stars and this years it is going to be even bigger and even better than ever.

    Once again thank you with the bottom of my heart for your great support and love

    Charlotte x


    Wooly Wonders and Cool Cork

    Aveva believe that design creates a happier world and here at Spektakulär we have to agree,  so it’s little wonder they are one of our favourite suppliers!

    We are delighted that a new order of Aveva happiness arrived to our shops last week. Our biggest seller in recent months has been their gorgeous and tactile felted flower pots, we just haven’t been able to keep up with demand at times! Hand felted and in an array of glorious colours, the pots come in three different sizes and are treated inside with natural rubber to make them water resistant. We also sell the macrame (hanger) so you can suspend them in windows, doorways or from beams if that’s what takes your fancy.

    Aveva Flower pot in olive with nature macrame
    Wool Flower pot in olive, medium size. Displayed with Macrame in nature. Image AleichiaW

    Aveva Design Wool Flower pots
    Love the new colour design for A/W 18. Two tone in rust, mustard, olive, grey and aubergine.

    Aveva have taken hand felted wool back into the living area while keeping an old tradition alive and are inspired by other materials as long as it is natural and friendly to the environment. Throughout the whole design process their goal is to work locally as much as possible, to produce less packaging, reduce the negative impact on the planet while at the same time supporting craftsmanship in Sweden and around the world.

    Another material they love to work with is cork and this delivery is bringing us a new range of simple and stylish cork coasters.  Hexagonal in shape and dipped in 4 different hues of the same colour, greys and greens. We adore these!

    Aveva coasters
    Aveva Design cork coaster in greens (set of 4). Eva Solo slow coffee brewer and latte mugs. Image: AliechiaW




    Hyggebukser Time?

    I read this today and it really made me smile. Hyggebukser are that pair of pants you’d never be caught dead wearing in public, but practically live in when you’re at home on the weekends binging on Netflix. 

    We have been treated to an amazing summer here in Edinburgh. I’ve lived here for 25 years and at the risk of sounding like my mum, I can’t remember a year like it. I have a tan, we used the garden for more than 7 minutes and I even wore a vest top. In public!!  I know – crazy times!

    This week however, we seem to have returned to a more normal Edinburgh climate. The schools are back this week and as if to commiserate with the little munchkins,  the weather has turned from glorious sunshine to hair-wrecking drizzle and mist. Pah! The only thing that cheers me up is the thought of an incoming Autumn and all that holds for us. Here at Spektakulär Gifts and Spektakulär Home, we love nothing more than preparing ourselves for our favourite season (well, mine anyway) and if that means I get to wear my hyggebukser pants for the rest of the year then bring it on!

    As you all know by now, Hygge is a Danish concept that cannot be translated to one single word but encompasses a feeling of cosy contentment and well-being through enjoying the simple things in life. Think cups of steaming hot chocolate, slippers and candles but for me nothing welcomes Autumn like a thick blanket and luckily for us all, Charlotte has been shopping! While home over the summer she visited Spira of Sweden and placed an order for some gorgeous new ones from their Autumn/Winter 2018 range. 100% cotton, big and a good weight for snuggling under, they are perfect for the months ahead. In fact, they’d be perfect for today to be honest – if only to hide my Haar Hair under! They have just arrived at our Spektakulär Home shop so pop in and we can put all that pesky hot weather firmly behind us!