Delivery after delivery…

Good Morning… well it was morning when I started this post!

Oh another lovely Autumn morning, I just love the crisp freshness, you can just tell there is changes in the air. I love Autumn, don’t get me wrong, I have no favourite season. I just love them all and what each of them brings. I do really appreciate having seasons, even though I do not get a lot of snow (miss the snow a lot) in the winter I think we should consider our selves very lucky to live where we live. Remember living in Las Vegas a year and in May the sun went down at 18.00 at night…it just felt so wrong. Sun is not supposed to go down until 22.00 – 23.00 in the end of May. Anyway, I am just happy that Autumn has arrived and even though I am sad to see summer go, yes I had a nice warm summer since I spent it in Sweden (believe it or not). But Autumn brings something else…HYGGE! Hygge is not Swedish, it is a Danish word but we Scandi people all seem to use it and be used to it. It is our way of living. Yes it is getting dark, dull, wet, cold and yucky outside so why not make our indoor life cosy. Enjoy the darkness and create a nice welcoming home instead. A cup of tea in the sofa with a warm wool blanket, candles (scented for you who likes that (not for me)). Time to invest in a few good books or a new box set on netflix. There are lots of ways to enjoy Hygge, but most of all I suggest you enjoy it with your loved ones. So this Autumn I shall try to relax more and hang with my girls. More board games and hot chocolates!

Other news is that both shops are going through some changes at the moment, almost daily we are getting new deliveries and there is a nice vibe in the shops which we all love. As you might have noticed Zuzanna is not around as much and that is because she is off to Uni this year to do her masters in Comics (why don’t you ask her all about it when you see her). But we are delighted to welcome a couple of lovely new ladies who has recently joined us. Our lovely Ruth just turned 50 (I know it is very hard to believe) and we took her out for Birthday drinks and I am so pleased with the team of ladies that now work in both shops, I really noticed how they all got along and enjoyed each others company and I firmly believe that to run a small business and not be the face of it you need to have a great team that support you and that you as a boss support back. I think everyone is happy if we all have a good balance and are friends. However sometimes it is a bit tricky not to be too friendly and more like a boss, daily challenges but we just have to go with the flow. As long as I stay fair and everyone knows what to do I think it is fine. So you wonder what I am doing then since you hardly see me at the shops these days, well I can tell you. I am spending every spare hour I have (other than entertaining our daughters) in front of the laptop organising all the Christmas orders…oh this year is going to be crazy…crazy exciting! Lots of new and exciting brands and also this year I have two shops to fill up. At the moment I am trying my best to get orders and budget to go together. It is tricky to try to get it to work, but I am hopeful it will all be well in the end.

But first lets enjoy a stunning colourful Autumn, blankets from Swedish Klippan has arrived, fresh designs from Pappelina, Nordic cooking books as well as life style books and had two Christmas books in that both sold within a day (hmm). Stylish Danish Sej, an amazing brand using rubber, so black, so stylish, so useful, I love it. Fantastic Iris Hantverk (oh I need to do a blog about Iris Hantverk, what an fantastic brand and the story behind is just super) brings wonderful hand made bath and kitchen designs.

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Iris Hantverks beautiful shaving cup in concrete! The soap smells fantastic! Just one of many great designs by Iris Hantverk.

Swedish Linum rugs and cushions. Sagafroms new Oval Oak candle holders (oh yes they are huge). Stunning Danish Sence Copenhagen, new jewellery which we are sodelighted with (oh I need to treat myself), reflectors by Swedish Firefly and lots more.

And good news, I have huge absolutely huge orders that is ready to be shipped from Sweden with santas from Nääsgränsgården and this year you will have two really bright shops in Holy Corner full of advent candle bridges and stars from Swedish Star Trading. This is only two orders of many many orders…you will love spending time at Spektakulär and Lilla this Autumn and Winter :)

Charlotte x

Welcome Autumn!

So much is happening at the moment and I must admit I struggle to keep up! So sadly the blog is what takes the worst hit. Not blogged for some time, I do apologise!

Now where do I begin, well first our beloved Spektakulär turned six years last Sunday. Six years, been six years of lots of emotions but what a fantastic learning curve. Also six years ago our first baby girl arrived and then as you know little sister two and a half year later. Yes it is a challenge to juggle family and business life but sometimes I have to remind myself how much the girls enjoy spending time in the shops and also I personally believe we teach them lots of life and social skills by being  part of our business and also chatting to customers. I think Stina’s favourite thing is the scanner, to scan products through the till and make that beeping noise. She just loves it. So be prepared next time you are in and find her behind the till ready with the scanner.

We spent the summer in Sweden as always. Am glad I have the most fantastic staff who love and look after the shop, now both shops, so well that I can go abroad and not worry. As well as Sweden we have also visited other beautiful locations in Europe. But now we are back to the so called routine life. Breakfast club, school, nursery, after school activities and oh hello work. Richard is working his normal day job and then trying to keep up with all the enjoyable paperwork, I think we have most of it under control. But now the really hectic but the most fun bit of being a small shop owner, Christmas preparations. Oh there is nothing better I think than to arrive early to the shop on a dull dark morning in November and all the Christmas lights are lit. It is just so cosy and it brightens up the day.

First, yes Spektakulär has looked a bit bare perhaps but fear not new lovely designs are on its way. Richard and I spent a weekend in London (yeah during the heatwave, it was great) and went to Top Drawer which is a lovely relaxed yet very stylish trade fair. Most of my UK agents and distributors have a stand there. Only problem is that I chat chat chat, these people have after six years become friends and you just need to catch up and gossip and of course see any new designs. This time I placed lots of orders at the fair and they are starting to arrive. At Spektakulär beautiful Ekelund arrived on Monday (oh we love). At Lilla, we are delighted to welcome a new reflector supplier and what a funky brand Firefly is. I really can not make up my mind which ones I love the most. The burger and the roller skate oh and the bolt… You just have to pop in to have a look for your self. Guess what Rachael just emailed me, Linum and Bosign has arrived, a new stunning and stylish jewellery brand (but I need to sort out the prices because I was not expecting it in just yet) which will go on display this weekend. There is one more delivery due this afternoon and I am pretty sure it is from Swedish Pappelina.

So great news, the shops are starting to fill up again and if you are happen to swing by during the next few days it will probably look a bit different from last weekend :)

So just a quick blog but hey at least a finished one (have about 30 drafts since this Summer). Have a great day. I know Rachael at Spektakulär will :)

Charlotte x

The World of TULIPOP

Welcome to the world of Tulipop, it sure of a magical island. I personally adore this Icelandic brand! And our lovely Ruth has written a little blog for you! Enjoy!
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Been anywhere nice this summer? Portugal? Greece? Next time how about somewhere a bit different? Somewhere where you can hang out with the coolest new friends in a magical place – come with me to Tulipop! 

The enchanting world of Tulipop, dreamt up by mother of two Signy and brought to life by her best friend Helga, is an original, beautiful and magical children’s range unlike any other. Launched in 2010, it is now an established, award-winning brand and all of us here at Lilla have our firm favourites. For me it can only be strong and silent Fred – he is adorably gothic and only eats one thing – ink-cap mushrooms, which accounts for his beautiful black colouring (he is also part reindeer – another reason why he’s the one for me!) His friends are a just as strange and wonderful. Bubble is a shy, dreamy little boy who spends his days reading romantic novels, playing hopscotch and eating blueberry pancakes. He loves all the colours of the rainbow and his favourite sweet is blueberry pancakes with a dash of maple syrup. Gloomy (don’t be fooled by her name!) loves surprises and playing pranks. She enjoys singing, twirling, writing secrets in her diary, telling ghost stories and catching fireflies – see, she’s far from gloomy! What can I say about Miss Maddy? This super-gifted, multi-talented prima donna is the star of the circus. Her world renowned signature stunt is a perfect split jump through a golden ring of fire and she likes nothing better than being told how wonderful she is! When not being generally super-splendid she loves to eat strawberry ice-cream soda with lashings of whipped cream and a cherry on top. Last but not least is someone else I have a soft spot for – Mr Tree. Also known as Woody, he is a mild mannered, good-hearted chap and the oldest of the Tulipop clan. He hasn’t got a bad bone in his body although some may find him scary because of his diamond eyes and two horn-like branches sticking out of his head. His only weakness is his obsession with gemstones and the most beautiful jewels in his collection were formed from tears of true happiness, as Mr. Tree has the gift of transforming tears into diamonds. Do you think living in an amazing world like Tulipop might be fun? We certainly do and Lilla has everything you need to transport you there – stationery, lunch boxes, bottles, cutlery, crockery sets, bags, lamps and much more. Come in and find your favourite (but remember, Fred’s all mine!)  
Ruth x

A day at the beach…well more like five minutes

Staying at my sisters house in Trollhättan at the moment. Only 10-15 min drive from her house is her summer house. I will tell you about Swede’s and their summerhouse another time (we had one as a child, lots of happy childhood memories). Anyhow, my sister is renovating it at the moment so full house, our brother and some of my sisters friends are around this weekend which is so lovely. Full house is good for your soul now and then I think. My girls and I was not sure what to do, after a lazy morning eating breakfast out in the sun most of the grown ups headed to the summer house and so did we, however two minutes drive from summer house is a lovely little beach. So we made a little detour. They are called Badplats in Swedish, an area where you can go for a swim and play, normally with a cafe selling you an ice cream, needed coffee or sticky buns (which the wasps love). So we stopped here and the girls were so delighted. Stina just love go in the water. But from the house to the badplats something happen to the weather, the sun went and it was really windy. Luckily it was not that cold in the air, just a bit dark. We also had the beach all to ourselves, hmm a sign of not a perfect day at the beach perhaps.

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Brug is following us everywhere

Less than a month ago we took on a new brand to Lilla. The Brug is super, I am so delighted with this bag/rug. Easy to pack and carry with us. Today it was my beach bag and we took it for a test round.

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Lets test the water first
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Actually not that cold

Just love how high Lovisa pulled her skirt. She was not sure about this whole thing. And did not help big sister wanted to splash and run in the water either.

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Sand and waves are exciting
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Hmm we might as well just change

Stina was just so excited, since the weather has not been that great, this was the first time we went to the beach this year. Last year Lovisa was not interested at all and I struggled to keep them both happy. Stina out in the water, Lovisa the other way or me carrying her while Stina wanted further and further out.

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Changed and ready for a dip

Stina could have stayed in the water for hours, she just screeched with joy every time a wave came , Lovisa not so much. I carried her most of the time, she laughed a lot at silly sister, but was not keen to be in the water. Then dark clouds appeared, got them dried and warm, we made it in under a tree just before a shower.

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The sky got dark and we packed up swiftly

Delighted with the Brug, hardly brought any sand with us home. Nothing extra in the car. Gone are the days with a wet towel covered in sand in a plastic bag leaving sand everywhere. Nope for my first proper testing round I could not be more pleased!

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Just adore these capes

And of course, check out these capes by Danish The Organic Company. We stock a lot of OC at both shops and I bought these for the girls and I am delighted, so soft and cosy. And while getting ready on the beach it was very comfy to stay warm under a nice big towel.

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Come on lets go back to the car

Plus they look rather cute in their capes. We can easily order these in for Lilla if you would like one for your little one as well.

Tomorrow Richard arrives and we have another 12 days in Sweden before we head to Copenhagen for a few nights and then back to Edinburgh. I am just hoping the weather will pick up and that Richard can hang with Lovisa and I can take Stina for a proper swim in the lake.

Have a super summers day

Charlotte x

Home sweet home…

So week one past just like that and we have done NOTHING!

Maybe that is a good thing! Going home was well needed after the last few weeks in the UK. As a Swede and a small business owner I took this whole brexit thing very hard. So going home has given me lots of hope and also some ideas how our business will survive this (well hopefully).

 

Anyhow! Normally we go to Sweden for a few weeks since I really like the girls to work on their Swedish, I am really bad at speaking Swedish to them…oh well we are getting there! So the first two weeks it is just the girls and myself then Richard will join us as well. We have booked in to see a few of our amazing suppliers as well as lovely friends when he arrives which will be great. But at the moment we are visiting lovely local independent shops full of designs I personally love, exploring the forest behind my mums house and eating way too much.

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Hemlighter (Secrets), charming boutique filled of lovely treasures 
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Behind mums house is a forest and they just love exploring 

 

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After a heavy rain storm, out for a slug count…57 I think before they gave up (Yuck)

Sadly the weather is absolutely rubbish here, I can not remember the last time I have seen showers like this, it is cold, wet, dark, rather dull to be honest (it’s very disappointing). We try to go out for some walks when the worst is over and have been out picking blueberries and wild raspberries in the forest. Buying blueberries in the shop in UK, well for me they are not blueberries, these ones we pick our self, we got purple fingers (Lovisa was purple all around her mouth) and they are really colourful and tasty. Also found lots of raspberries so once again I need to concur my fear of snakes and also tics… oh man I hate those tics. Found one or two on my mums dog and cats…yuck! Even though they are covered in lots of protecting stuff they still get them, guess it does not help there are lots of roe deer here and they are covered in those vicious little horrid unnecessary blood sucking creatures.

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Blueberry picking in the rain
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Super tasty!

Otherwise we just chill, which I think has been very good for Stina, she is tired emotionally after her first year at school.

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Stina with her cousin Emma (Happiness)
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A visit to my grandmother Ulla

So hanging with cousins, visiting family, playing with new friends, me having tons of Fika (yes all my clothing is a bit tighter than a week ago) and so on is rather relaxing. Oh yes and Pizza, no there is no better Pizza in the world than SWEDISH Pizza. Any Swede who says anything else is not a true Swede (I am serious)!

 

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Saturday Sweets, A must in when in Sweden

I hope you are having a nice time as well and that the weather is better than here (however at this moment I am sitting in the sun on the veranda, hope this will last at least one day).

Don’t forget I have wonderful staff who all is looking after both shops while we are at home. At the moment I am not placing any orders but the shops are still full of lovely designs and we are awaiting in a few deliveries so please pop in and find a nice treat or gift. I have notice that the amazing Tulipop is flying out at the moment, surely not back to school already…

And our clearance sale is still going at Spektakulär. Still lots of lovely designs. Please do note that these are designs that will not be reordered again so pop in and grab a bargain.

Charlotte x

 

 

 

 

and now over to Ruth…

As you might be aware I am home in Sweden during the summer (as usual) and while I am away the lovely ladies are looking after the shop and also enjoying blogging a little. Time for lovely Ruth!

Summer holidays – yay!! When I was school age the summer seemed to go on forever and it was ALWAYS hot!  Not so much now it would seem – hmm, we definitely need things to keep our little things entertained when the weather isn’t playing ball.

I love Lilla, it’s a place of happiness and has wonderful stock but the company I fell in love with instantly when we were setting up the shop is Oskar and Ellen – they made me squeal slightly with excitement and definitely brought out the silly side of me. Charlotte and I did spend quite some time parading (prancing?) around in the heads and tails dress up kits but what I really love are their imaginative play sets.

There is a great range – pirate ship, castle, space rocket, circus (scary-ish clown included!) farm yard, airport, but my favourite has to be the stables. There are 2 booths inside for White Diamond and Black Beauty (or Angelina Jolie and Thunder as my daughter has just renamed them!) and Olivia the stable girl has a grooming brush to keep them in show condition and is obviously quite the rider as she has a first prize rosette. The outside is beautifully embroidered and everything packs away inside the stable so you can take it anywhere.

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Oscar & Ellen’s Stable including Angelina Jolie, Thunder and Olivia :)

I would have LOVED this when I was a kid – it’s never too late,  you will find me in Lilla throughout the summer, cantering around the shop with Olivia – come and play!!

Ruth x

 

IRIS lights

Oh the love we get for the Iris Lights are truly amazing, and to be frank I am not surprised – they are so beautiful. The colour combinations are stylish and well thought through and we love them all. I just can not work out which one I like the most.

Now I am working my way through some orders during the summer while I am home. Really nice to see things in real life and in a Swedish shop. Iris is one of the first ones to place. We have a few of the lights already on order but please feel free to have a browse though and contact us if you like to order one.

We stock two sizes, 25 light sling and a 35 light sling, I personally just love to hang the straight down from the ceiling on a wall as a feature. It really creates a cosy feel. Which I am all about, a homely home is the most welcome feature you can give your own home.

I am just checking to see if Iris close for the summer, it is very common in Scandinavia that for at least two weeks the warehouses and offices close down, used to be all of July but now these days about two weeks. I have gotten lots of reminders already. As soon as I know I will place this order.

But for now here is some stylish inspirations and I just wish I had a space for them all at my own house.

Have super day

Charlotte x IRIS_Dining10968340_487535838053795_4340254615178619829_n10952086_509576229183089_4101901849523194586_n10885571_468823719925007_2394260392398554842_n10517507_498189860321726_8340601275076307146_n10429290_484945658312813_6909242265491850899_n10341411_380519478755432_4704790327836010966_n1947780_495505797256799_6529552570194857748_n1653633_433474293459950_1594299083378435356_n18119_514123378728374_241048348202164413_nspring