Day 7

FIKA FRIDAY

Chocolate Balls

What is FIKA FRIDAY? Fika Friday is a little event at the shop on a Friday morning once a month. Homemade Swedish treats and cup of coffee/tea on us while you come in and browse around the shop.

The plan is that it will be a monthly event and I think we will continue this once we are back to normality (let us hope it will be sooner rather than later).

It became quite popular, some of the Fridays were busy, some less, but in general it has been a success. So once we are back up, meet up with a friend and wander around Bruntsfield and Morningside and stop by for a tasty treat and perhaps even a little treat for your home too. If you like to know more about FIKA, well click here! It is a very very Swedish thing and part of our culture!

While I was going though images yesterday I fund lots of fun photos and a realised a lot of baking does go on in our house. Hmm what can we bake today? You baking anything special? Let me know!!

Today I have done my final walk for WALK ALL OVER CANCER for Cancer Research! At least 10000 steps a day every day in March! Final week was really difficult and I have really struggled but it has been very good for my mind as closing our business has hit me hard. There is still time to donate so head over to my just give page by clicking here!

No it is time for homeschooling. The girls are on a roll at the moment and I am feeling ok about it but it truly is difficult and I am really grateful for teachers!!!

Have a fab day

Charlotte xx

Day 6

Happy Colours

Aveva

Colours!! Spektakulär has become a place where you will find lots of colourful designs. This is were you go to get a little bit of eye candy and also find great designs to brighten up your home.

In Sweden it is common to have a blank canvas as a base when you decorate your home. White is always a safe choice and I will just flick in here to tell you that the colour magnolia should be banned (I use it as a swearword)!! So let’s go with a nice base and then what we do at home is to use accessories. And one main thing we do is that we change our homes after season. Make your home colourful in the Spring using either soft welcoming tones such as light blues, warm greys or why not give it a huge splash of pastels. It should feel like you are bringing in Spring in to your home. There are easy ways to do this. Such as a bright vase with welcoming daffodils, or a new lampshade, curtains or indeed cushion covers.

I could tell you all about all the colourful brands in the shop such as Rice, Spira of Sweden and Pappelina. But today let me just show you these beautiful designs by one of our most colourful brands is AVEVA. Aveva means “by Eva” in Swedish. Eva is the fab designer behind this happy brand. Aveva is based in Sweden and focus on being sustainable while bring in a splash of colour in you home. We came across Aveva while we were in Copenhagen many years ago. A small independent shop were selling some of their lovely colourful trivets and we feel in love. That Aveva is also the most wonderful company to deal with just makes it such a enjoyable experience and I love every new design Eva create.

In our latest delivery we welcomed wool flower pots, garlands, trivets and the great cork coasters with a edge dipped in cheerful colours. As the best trend in a very long time “greenery” is still going strong we love the flower pots. The inside is coated with natural rubber which makes them waterproof. These are a great gift to give and one to receive or indeed a fab treat. I am delighted to let you know Aveva is the first brand we are focusing on to get up on our webshop, yes we are working on it but it is like a whole new language for me so please bear with me!!

Hope you are all super, Stina has already done most of her homework for today (YAY I ROCK), however I just struggle with Lovisa’s LACK of concentration trying to spell her words… So I have given up at the moment. Will let them colour and listen to David Walliams while I create lunch! I also realised I forgot to put my watch on while doing Joe Wicks earlier…darn! Now I have to walk a bit longer today and I was hoping not too.

See you all tomorrow, shall look through older photos and try to find some fun ones.

Charlotte x

Day 5

EDINBURGH

Edinburgh

I am as always not organised, I gave myself a task with this and I am already struggling and am only on day 5 so please do give me ideas or suggestions what you like to know about Spektakulär or something from the shop that makes you happy.

So today when I was out walking my steps for Cancer Research, I walked around a deserted Edinburgh. I have seen it like this before but only when late or early, never in the middle of the day and especially not on a Sunday. Walking at the moment feels so odd and uncomfortable but people are very very good at giving each other space. The only busy place was the Meadows and it was not too bad. When I got up to the Castle and saw that basically there were less than ten people there I relaxed a lot and I managed to snap this photo. I did walk a long walk to the shop today. We still need to go and check on the shop so there are no leaks, overflows, broken windows or vandalism. And while walking I was thinking about today’s picture for my challenge and it became this one. It is, to be frank a pretty terrible picture, but this was the view that made me fall in love with Edinburgh 13 years ago.

How do you chose a town/city/village to become your new home? Often you stay near family or you go with work. We, well we met in London and in 2007 the company we both worked for went into administration while we were on holiday in Scotland. Richard is from Aberdeen and we were up to visit his family and drove around Scotland. In the middle of the panic of losing our jobs (and for Richard who worked for that company for 15 years he felt he was about to lose his family), we travelled to spend some time in Edinburgh. I remember Richard took me here and even if it was raining I just fell in love. Almost a year later we left London and rented a flat in Edinburgh (which we still rent today).

What I love about Edinburgh is that it is a small, beautiful city with nature so extremely close. 20 mins from the city centre you have hills, fields, water and another hour you will be in the highlands. One of the things that made me feel at home quickly here is that the nature is very similar to home. It is full of independent shops and cafes, it is family friendly and welcoming.

Yes I often, basically every day want to move, either home or to the country! My dream home is a comfortable charming house full with nooks and crannies plus a big garden. I guess we all need to have dreams and this is my biggest dream and running my own shop of course.

So today’s happiness is Edinburgh! If you have never been please do visit (once it is safe to do so) and please do come and visit the shop and our great neighbourhood!

Charlotte x

Day 4

Spektakulär at home!

Was not sure what to post today, I think I need to sit down and write a list of what to post when. However this morning I was sent this from a customer. A little photo collage of Spektakulär at her home!

Spektakulär at home!

WOW!!!!! And I mean wow! What a wonderful treat to receive and a fantastic reminder that we do in fact inspire to create homely homes.

Thank you Sandra! This really made my day!! I love those Pappelina rug colours, the sea grass and storm are personal favourites!

If you have designs from Spektakulär, feel free to share them with us! It truly makes us happy and is a huge motivation to stay strong and keep going.

Have a wonderful day! We are chilling, think a little bit of the “fun” home schooling will take place today such a designing a playpark and write a short story! Otherwise not a lot, had waffles for brunch and I shall make more coffee and sit down with a book. I will walk over to the shop later to check post and make sure it is all ok and to get my 10000 steps for #walkalloveercancer.

Charlotte x

Day 3

Pappelina!

Day 3 of my happy photos from the shop and today I like to tell you a little bit about one of our most amazing brands we sell in the shop. So it is not just one photo but many. However the photo of our neighbour Brian is probably the one I like the best! Pappelina is one of the brands I just adore so much, and I am sure you know all about it because I have gone on and on about it for years, in fact almost ten years as we are about to turn ten and Pappelina has been with us since the start.

Pappelina is now as much part of Spektakulär as I am. It has become my mission to sell you a plastic rug. Rugs, woven in plastic or fabric, is a very common feature in most Swedish homes as we have wooden floors and no carpets (the carpets was a trend in the 60s and 70s but is basically banned (by trendsetters) now). UK has a different way of living and I can see why the Scandi lifestyle is appealing as it is completely unique. Or is it? Not to me, as it is part of how I grew up. So my naive me ten years ago thought selling plastic rugs will be super easy however it certainly has not been a easy sale ride, but wow we have worked our socks off, and we have noticed how much you are falling in love with them and how much you feel you need one, not want…need! I am so proud of my team who all fallen in love with Pappelina and made it our mission to sell you a Pappelina.

Right what are the benefits of a Pappelina rug, well first of all it is easy to wash, a smaller one you can just put in the washing machine (amazing when you have a puppy), please read instructions here. They are comfortable under bare feet, non slip, allergy friendly, long lasting, water resistant, non toxic, functional and stylish. Perfect in every home and room, why not take them with you when camping?! And best of all they are made with pride in Sweden!

So yes Pappelina is part of what we are and stand for. We are a Scandi (or indeed Nordic) shop that bring you bits of Scandinavia to the UK. We aim to give you the wonderful feeling of creating a homely home. We all spend a lot of time in our homes and making your home cosy, welcoming and warm is our mission. Never have LOVE YOUR HOME been of such importance, as we are now stuck indoors. I need you to imagine your home as your happy place. And that is what we are about. We are not an expensive shop, we are affordable (like most small independents) and we are quirky. We love colour and we love functional. And Pappelina belong at Spektakulär because it stands for the same as us. To create a lovely home!

Welcome!!!
This was taken the night before the day we open our Lilla shop and there we had three display rugs, which created a bright and happy place!

So if you already have discovered Pappelina, why not send me your photos and tell me why you love them. Or if, wow I MUST HAVE ONE is a feeling you feel right now, then once we reopen come in and see us and we can show them to you. Or if you already know which one you like, then get in touch and I can order it for you. It might take a bit longer at the moment but it so will be worth it! I am personally saving up for a large one for the girls bedroom. Plus I think I need one under my dining room table.

Happy Friday! Am about to head out for my 10000 steps and I am sure I have gone full on grey this week trying to be a patient teacher…Stina built a fab eraser tower instead of doing her subtraction and I think it took her four, F O U R hours to do nine sums….arrrgghhh my heart is actually hurting from the stress! How the hell do teachers stay so positive!?!

Day 2

My 30 day happy photo from the shop challenge needs a better name! So please give me some suggestions!

I have started to upload images to a photo printing company online, I haven’t printed a photo since Stina was a toddler! Which is terrible so I guess this is a great thing to do, got a few years of catching up! Before Christmas I went to see Meik Wiking promoting his new book, the Art of making Memories. He reminded me about the feeling looking though old photo albums. And yes I remember that feeling going to my grandmother looking through her albums. And I see how excited my own girls are looking through albums at their grandparents when we visit them.

So this morning I found this photo, and wow this was from a VERY happy time! Pretty much on the date, four years ago, the opening of Lilla, our beautiful beautiful children shop! That Lilla nearly bankrupted us and that the opening was weeks before the horrible, awful, evil brexit that floored me, and that I am still fighting that depression it caused me four years later is another story. Because right at this very moment I took this photo of my girls I was extremely happy!

Here we are so excited, all of us, I was hiring fantastic staff that are still with us (some not but we are still in touch), the shop ladies (Ruth and Zuzanna) at the time were so excited and worked so hard! We were painting, building shelves and here I was unpacking a HUGE delivery full with fun and stylish Scandi toys and designs for a lovely nursery. My two daughters who are both a huge part of Spektakulär was “helping” me unpacking and checking stock was playing with the boxes. Stina couldn’t get out, she got stuck so Richard had to lift her out by her feet, oh the giggles and silliness! It truly was a precious moment and this photo is a great reminder of a happy memory!

Today we are having a chill day, both girls were up last night, three of us had nightmares, we definitely think the Bogeyman came for a visit. So not a lot of sleep. So we will be reading, craft, colouring, playing with our toys and I think Monopoly is on the agenda plus a nap! At the moment we are catching up on old school work which we all gave up on at the time but today it makes sense.

Have a great day and please do send me requests on what you like me to post and also I need a better name!

Charlotte x

30 day happy photo from the shop challenge!

Day 1!

Our Spring shop window at the moment! It is bright and welcoming and I can not wait to go back to the shop and welcome you with a smile.

Oh wow what a roller coaster these last few weeks has been. When I started the Walk all over Cancer 1st March I was not excepting to have to walk up and down my flat as much as possible. Never has this flat felt so small (and it is not a small flat). However I am not alone! All of us are in the same boat and we are all trying to stay positive. I am trying to be a good teacher and it has proven me very difficult. I did not choose to home-school my children and I am so so grateful for all you teachers who choose to be teachers. Day 3 and I think today might actually be a good day of school work, but it is not even lunch yet so we shall see.

As a small business we obviously trying to survive but we are a non-essential business. Yes of course it would be a amazing to make your home look fantastic during the next three weeks but I think we should all just calm down, stay at home and hopefully this will go away sooner. I rather we all do what we are told for three weeks than being stuck indoors much longer. And lets just give our NHS a break!

You can give me a shout and tell me you like to order something and yes I can put aside for you but I wont go to the post office unless emergency and this is not an emergency.

Good news is though that we are building a webshop and I feel we got three weeks to get it to look nice and homely but most of like us, Spektakulär!

Ok I am about to read with the older and the little one is about to start a 30 day LEGO challenge. This homework I like! However I think I shall put up a happy picture from the shop a day (that will be my 30 day happy photo from the shop day). If you like to see something special let me know!

Charlotte xx

Spektakulär is sadly temporarily CLOSED!

Unfortunately we have taken the decision to CLOSE Spektakulär temporarily! It was for sure not an easy decision, but I just could not face weeks after weeks of us not being allowed to leave our homes if it gets any worse, so lets try to stop this.

For now however I can post any beautiful designs you see on our social media, I will be in the shop now and then, so you can collect when I am there or we can deliver locally. We can take payments over the phone, I do have a portable card reader and we also have a paypal account. Mail order, postage is at a standard £4.50 for small parcel 1st class signed for (however if you rather not meet your postie we can sort it). Over £75 is free shipping.

This is crazy! I am not sure how else to describe it! To look outside and see the blue skies, wake up to light mornings, the wonderful Spring sun, listening to the Spring birds and feeling refreshed by the air. To tell the girls no you can not go and play with your friends and no you can not go to school! I can not spend time with my friends and I can not keep my shop open as unfortunately there will be people who are ill who does not respect the advice and will continue to spread it. Yes even if we are tiny, only so many people in the shop at one time we can not guarantee it is safe. And I need my staff to be safe!

But trying to stay positive, some days are and will be easier than others! I am trying to see what we can do at home right now. I am, believe it or not, a tiny little bit excited about spending time with my family. The girls have grown up with a mother who has dragged them around with her business constantly on her mind so now I shall spend some time with them. I have a massive pile of books to read, films to watch, cakes to bake, letters to write (!!) and I also thought it is time to get knitting again. Those projects I have thought: ha what a joke…when will I have time to do them? Well now perhaps! Most of all I really really like us to go hill walking, it has been something I have nagged my city family about, so as long as it is safe to do so. However seeing on the news people going crazy on the hills and car parks overflowing with people and litter…well that is not so good. Plus our car has broken down so we just have to wander locally for a little bit.

However one more thing I will do!!! WEBSHOP!! Yup about bloody time you think! Actually this is what I am supposed to tell you rather than going on and on about all the other private stuff, feelings and thoughts!

I have been so reluctant to create a webshop as I know it is so much hard work. It is everything I am not, I truly believe in small shops, personal service, good chats and it is so good for a local community. The whole meeting and greeting other people idea! However now is another time, so now I shall build a little webshop. I am pretty sure it will take me a couple of evenings/weeks, some bottles of wine, lots (and I mean lots) of bread dipped in lurpac plus throw in some foul language…but then we should all be fine.

I will not be at the shop daily but I can be flexible if you like to come and collect. Richard is working from home and I do need to continue to walk my 10000 steps a day for Cancer Research. Even though right now I am feeling less inspired to do so. A fast walk will most likely be good for my mental health and fresh air is good for us all. Plus Cancer wont stop only because Corona is here! Please sponsor me, it will be needed and it will keep me going! Link below!

https://fundraise.cancerresearchuk.org/page/charlottes-walk-all-over-cancer-fundraising-page-56

Stay safe wonderful people and be kind! To yourself, your neighbours and our fantastic planet. Do not overspend on rubbish you will just bin, make sure you check in on the elderly lady down the road ( if you have energy) and make sure you respect the advice and stay in if you are not well!

Charlotte x

WELCOME AYAIDA!!

New brand alert!

Stylish Water Bottles!
The bottle in the front showcase the clever sports lid that can be purchased separately.

I am so super excited to welcome a fantastic new brand to Spektakulär!

This Danish family owned business was established in 2017. AYAIDA is the combination of the names of their daughters Aya and Ida, and the overall thought behind AYAIDA is to think about the next generation and consider every usage we do. They combine design, functionality and elegance with a mission – to relieve the planet from the exaggerated amount of plastic. And most of all they a making a difference for the people who are not having the same possibilities as we have here in Europe. The materials used in their products are carefully chosen to keep their customers healthy and to last for the longest time. They aim to inspire and minimise the “use and throw out” culture that we live in today.

These beautiful drinking bottles keep your beverages perfectly hot for 12 hours and cold for 24! They are 100% free from BPA, Phthalates and toxins. The bottles comes in three sizes, 500 ml, 750 ml and 1 L. And a super clever sports lid can be purchased separately.

All bottles comes with a lid with a silicone grip, in the middle the sportslid is demonstrated!

I was given one a month ago and I can not describe how pleased I am. It is comfortable to drink from, stylish, leak proof and my water is always cold. My friend who gave it to me suggested to use it for a bottle of cold wine…I think that is a great idea and I will definitely try it out in near future!!! Plus I am about to use mine for hot Ribena as I am about to drag my family to Pentlands for a long family walk to get my steps up. When I first got it there was a few scratch marks and I once took it out of my bag covered in colour pens (!!!) but it came right off and it still looks new which I am very impressed by!

So what are you waiting for? Time to invest in a proper bottle, use less plastic and look stylish! Plus did you know AYAIDA donate 100 L of clean water for every sold AYAIDA products. You do good for you, children in need and for our beautiful planet! I would say this is a fantastic gift to give!

UNICEF expects that 1000 children are dying every day due to the lack of clean water. AYAIDA think EVERY child has the right to be healthy and to be safe which is what UNICEF also is fighting for. AYAIDA is extremely proud to be a business partner with UNICEF! You can read more here on AYAIDAs website.

All images are by our lovely EMMA! https://www.instagram.com/emmakburnettphotography/

Charlotte xx

Charlotte’s Walk All Over Cancer 2020

Save the date!!! Saturday 28th March, bake sale and raffle at Spektakulär for Cancer Research!

Like last year I have signed up for the 10000 steps a day challenge in March! Now this should be simple, I mean it should not be difficult to walk 10000 steps a day. Our lives surely should not be so stressful that we use the car everywhere! Hmm but it is actually not the easiest. Some days of course super easy, I walk to the shop…BUT it’s only about 6000 steps…well that is disappointing (of course I have to walk both ways)! Walk the kids to school, around 2000 steps. And so on, but to get those steps in I need to actually walk further and more often. Which is hard for someone who loves her sofa, and netflix, and wine, and everything but exercise!
I have my waterproofs, I got comfy walking shoes and I have sorted the library app so I can listen to audiobooks and of course positive podcasts!

So what did I learn from last year, firstly we never put petrol in the car, win win for both our budget and the environment. Second, I felt much better about myself and walked faster after a month of everyday walking plus the amount of friends I caught up with (am very grateful for those who met up with me at dark nights or joined me while I was walking to work, those steps were the easiest). Third I found lots and lots of wonderful new routes and discovered a Edinburgh that has been my home for more than 10 years.

Finally I did find out that I am absolutely rubbish at fundraising!!! So I need your help! Please sponsor me here on my fundraising page and join me while I am out walking over at our Instagram @spektakularltd

A wonderful customer gave me lots of advice so yes of course we will have our bake sale again and I believe we shall have a raffia as well! This weekend I shall set it all up, it is time to advertise my daily walks (turns out my marketing skills is not as up to scratch as they should be), and it is time for me to start walking! So why on earth am I doing this??? Well of course I am doing this for all of you who suffers from cancer. We all have someone we care about and love that has sadly been affected and cancer is as we know truly evil and I am so grateful to all the research and the hard work that goes on in trying to help everyone who are affected. Walking 10000 steps is actually nothing compare to those wonderful heros who daily helps people with cancer.

Charlotte x