Finally! It is finally time to reopen and it is with mixed feelings. It is not to just reopening and expect how it was back in March. Nope now it will be slightly differently but we will make it work.
Shop will be open part time, this is due to child care, well the lack of child care that is! It will only be me who will be in the shop while the wonderful staff will stay furloughed during the summer as there is more child care issues. However this may chance during the summer and we just have to go with the flow.
Part time mean three to four days a week, an evening a week and most likely during the weekend. Proper opening hours will be arranged this week.
Fantastic news are that our webshop will finally launch this week, any day now! And there will be a click and collect option so you can shop from home and nip in to the shop and collect your goodies. More info will follow and I will keep you posted!
So day 10! Well let us cheer up with a sunny picture from last year. Sunny outside ans sunny at Spektakulär!! Colour and happiness is part of our shop so we love it when all the wonderful designs come together so perfectly!
Oh dear! Already stopped writing, was supposed to write 30 days in a row!! To be perfectly honest with you I have not looked at my laptop or at any work since Saturday morning. I have lost a lot inspiration when it comes to the shop and am feeling a bit blue about it. However I just sat down to open my emails and I am amazed by all the lovely emails and also a couple of orders which is a great surprise. So I will go to the shop tomorrow, however I do everything I can not to go to the post office but am more than happy to post gift vouchers or deliver locally as we do not really spend anytime together.
So for the last few days we have been stuck indoors and I have organised a million thousand and six hama beads in to colours and it has taken me a lot of time. I just can not stop, it is supposed to be one of those relaxed satisfying things you do, but things like that stresses me out. My heart pounds so much faster and I tense up. Doing things that are supposed to be relaxing stresses me instead, like knitting, or paper cutting or painting. I just want it over with and I hate giving up. My plan is that we write Easter letter to friends and create Hama Bead chicks or Easter eggs and deliver while out walking but making one takes my kids hours and my patience has run out for today, so I decided to sit down with work instead and I am glad I did because I found all these fab messages and it really has cheered me up!
So how are you coping? We struggle a lot with the lack of outdoor space. Yes we can be in the shared garden but it is not just us using it. I am about to go for a long walk with Stina and Richard and Lovisa will go to the park to practise cycling. Last night I went out for my first ever Couch to 5K run…yup you guessed it! I was very glad when it was over and I felt I had run for days but in fact you only, very slowly, jog for eight minuets…really!!
So what am I supposed to blog about this week! Well Easter is coming up and as you know Swedish Ester is pretty full on. Used to be the third biggest holiday in Sweden and no not in a religious way. More about witches! So I will write you a little bit about traditions from home and what else, oh I do not know. Any special brand you like to see more about? Just give me a shout!
Enjoy the sun and your garden if you have one…am not jealous at all!
I have heard our shop being called the candle shop, which was not my intention however if that is what you like to call us so be it. Because candles is something we do well, and we would happily fill the shelves with more candles. I have a plan that once we open a bigger shop (if everything goes to plan) we will make sure we have a wall for all the colours from Danish Ester & Erik. However I have lost track of how many colours they do now, think about 90 and then all the sizes and shapes!
We started slowly with candles, but when we saw these in a small interior shop in Sweden, we were both so impressed and thought yes!! We NEED these at Spektakulär! It was not a natural easy sell at first but now people travel to us to buy candles, especially at Christmas. Ester & Erik candles are so wonderful and we love them. Personally I adore these cone candles because you do not need a holder and you can create a beautiful display. Please remember these candles are made to be used, so please enjoy them or give them to a friend who enjoys some me time!
What does candles mean to me as a Swede? It is part of life, it is a natural as a cup of coffee! You light candles, a few tealights at dinner or indeed tall taper candles, and guess what, not just at a fancy dinner party but a homemade easy, quick dinner after work with the family. It is a way to just calm down and relax after a crazy busy day. You can light a few candles while watching a film, a scented candle if you prefer. Personally I am not a great fan of scented candles, can’t stand the scent of fake vanilla, it gives me a headache. However sometimes after the kids have been to the toilet one of those might be a good idea in the bathroom!
I have started to give candles to friends, instead of flowers, bring a bouquet of candles. Colourful and happy or why not some calm, soft colours that can bring a calm mood. However what I have noticed is how few of you actually have candle holders! So if you buy candles for a friend maybe invest in a nice candle holder too.
When I travelled to London in 2005 I packed up my flat and put it all in my dad’s basement thinking I will be back in three to six months. However we all know what happen. A few years ago dad said they were about to move house and needed me to clear my stuff. So I went down there and I cleared like crazy. I kept about a fifth of my belonging but what I did prioritise was obviously some of my old candle holders. My stuff are now in my mum’s basement instead (and I think she is less happy about it). My dream is to buy a house on the country here and a I would love to buy a summer house in Sweden. Basically just so I can unpack my belongings including my old candle holders. Or maybe so we can have or own place in Sweden , nah basically so I can unpack my candle holders. I think I need to buy a lottery ticket!
I hope you are all coping well! Our homeschooling is not going great today, but lots of pictures from snapfish just arrived and it is great to go though last year in pictures. Lots of happy memories and I guess it is time to create new happy ones which is a bit of a challenge but we can do it!
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!!!
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.
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!
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.
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!
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!?!
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!
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!
As many of you will have noticed there is a “TO LET” sign above our first shop at number 11 Colinton Road. Do not worry we have a plan. And a little statement for you.
It is no secret that Retail is seeing some very significant changes. There are large High Street chains that have fallen and many more in trouble from both higher costs and changing customer behaviour. We are not on that scale, but we are not immune to either the rising costs or the trend to online. Moreover, it is hard for small businesses to compete when big stores are in a “permanent sale” death spiral.
Needless to say, as a business which exists to import goods from other European countries there is nothing positive in Brexit for us. We can currently place orders in Sweden that can arrive without any customs paperwork or tariffs, sometimes delivered faster than a similar UK distributor. None of this can be guaranteed after Brexit.
In 2019 we have the option to exit from one of our leases, and if we didn’t exercise that option we are committed to another three years. We have decided to do just that.
We will be combining our Gift and Home stores into the shop at 15 Colinton Road. Having two shops was an opportunity to explore new brands and we can take the best of both shops and continue to offer a fresh and exciting range. 15 is the new 11 :)
We believe in our shop and know the tremendous love our customers show for us which we are so incredible proud and grateful for. We are viewing this as a tactical retreat, a chance to regroup and weather the economic storm. But also a great opportunity for us to be creative and test new ideas.
Bruntsfield and Morningside have great independent businesses, working hard to make the area a vibrant and attractive place to live. They rely on local people as customers, they employ local people as staff. If you buy or see things you like, please be vocal about it – tell your friends, share links on social media, leave ratings or recommendations. We are part of a wonderful community and we love being a social hub. But most of all we love bring stylish, contemporary, happy and affordable Scandinavian and Nordic Design to you.