Sunday, 14 January 2018

New Moon: Sweet Elm dolls

Sweet Elm, Waldorf Inspired Dolls

It has been a long time since I did a post for children but these little dolls from Sweet Elm are so very beautiful that I just had to share. They are available either pre-made or in kit form... I for one am totally smitten with the little 'summer' mum and baby in a sling (below), it reminds me of those very special times carrying my son in my sling :)

Sweet Elm is an Australian based, family run business. We’re long-term wanderers from opposite sides of the world, currently exploring Australia's east coast. We're nature lovers and adventure-seekers with a passion for making.

Back in 2010, our little ones were growing into toddlers and watching them made us strong believers in the magic of open-ended play. We watched in awe as they tapped into deep wells of imagination and freedom. As parents we wanted to provide our kids with quality handmade toys. Toys that reflected our values and could be treasured in our family for many years. We envisioned magical wee folk who could join our children in their play. 

We first started making these dolls because we couldn’t find the toys we were after in shops. We were seeking simple, yet beautiful toys that let our children’s imaginations lead the way. What we never anticipated was how these wee dolls could bring so much joy purely in the process of making them. In learning how to make them we gained skills that flowed into other creations for our home. But the greatest joy of all came from the slow stitching, which was eagerly watched by our darlings as they waited for their new friend.

I hope I have packaged all of that into these humble kits. The pure pleasure that comes from taking a moment to quietly stitch for someone you love. The excitement the children feel as they watch their dolls come to life. And the new skills and confidence to make other handmade treasures that will last for years to come. I hope with all my heart, to pass on the gifts that these wee dolls have given to me.

To view more of these beautiful dolls and buy yourself a kit visit Sweet Elm or head on over to follow them on instagram @sweet.elm

Poppet kit dolls from Sweet Elm

Friday, 12 January 2018

The home of.... Abigael Whittaker, Creative Director of Tree of Life

I am so happy to share with you the home of Abigael Whittaker. She is a lovey soul I met on Instagram and I have been admiring her home and work from a distance for a long while so I was very pleased when she agreed to do a little interview. As well as running a super stylish home, Abi is the creative director for Australian brand Tree of Life, has recently become a mother and is also a very talented artist...... super woman!!!

Hi Abi thank you for taking th time out to talk to us today, can you start by telling us a little bit about where you are currently living?

I live in Brisbane, a smallish city, But dream of the seas! We are so excited to be moving to a treehouse by the sea in the next few months!! 

2) What attracted you to your current home ? 
Being up high we get to look out to the tree tops and enjoy their breeze, and try to forget the hustle and bustle around us.

3) What is your favorite room in the house? 
Our big living room which is full of natural light and positively heaving with all my treasures! 

4) What is your most treasured item? 
Hmmmm. So hard! My mum is a jewellery maker so I have loads of precious creations and heirlooms from her. My most treasured treasures probably change a bit as per my mood but currently I guess it would have to be my mums vintage floor length garnet red velvet coat... with gold trims! She bought it in Morocco in the 70s and it is truly as divine as it sounds.

5). What does 'home ' mean to you? 
Home had always been where my treasures live. They form so many of my memories from travel, loved ones and times of my life. I remember I heard someone once say "Home is where you lay your head" and I think that's such a nice sentiment too. It's just that my home tends to be the amazing textiles upon which I lay my head! 

 6) your job takes you in many adventures what items do you take to help you feel at home wherever you go? 
Fabulous jewellery and a big comfy scarf that can double as a blanket or bedspread! Whatever i'm wearing and wherever I'm  going jewellery and accessories always make me feel myself.

7) Where do you source your home furnishings 
Tree of Life of course! But also on my travels I tend to hoard textiles of all kinds to layer on beds, couches and floors... any surface I can find! 

8) what has inspired your style? My mum for sure, who has such an incredible style of her own as an artist and designer herself and someone who has lived and traveled through the 60s and 70s!! Amazing! And also my job and the immense opportunities I have been given to travel. I'm so inspired by the textures of other lands, the colours, the prints, the fabrics!!! 

9)Where would your dream home be? By the sea! I would just love love love to be able to walk to the beach from my wooden home that is filled with plants and colour and all the pattern and prints! 

10) What was the last item you brought? Probably nappies! But the last exciting item I brought was a gorgeous clay pink Serape from Tree of Life. Perfect for winter breastfeeding, as a blanket and as a throw. 

11) if you could teleport : time travel where would you go to grab some home furnishings? Morocco! And then a quick stop off to Mexico. Oh my goodness and I would LOVE to go to Afghanistan and load up their incredible jewellery. I imagine Afghanistan in the seventies and my heart bursts! 

12) You style for tree of life, how did you get into styling? 
My adventure with Tree of Life has been quite organic so that I've just easily swapped from styling to visual merchandising to buying. They all inform each other so that has worked out nicely. I studied Fashion Design at university which helped too.  I think when the style of a company or project is so close to your personal style it makes sense for you to be able to really invest yourself in to it. 
Tree of Life and I are a bit like an intricate tapestry these days! 

13) any tips for budding home stylists?
 Gather what you love! If you feel like you've got some gaps you need to fill gather inspiration from people and places you love and seek out those really key pieces. 

All images found via Abi's instagram @abrac_dabra

Saturday, 6 January 2018

5 minutes with.... Semra From Mama Moon Candles

Moon Ritual: Mama Moon Candles

Today on Moon to Moon we are lucky enough to have Semra from Mama Moon candles telling us about her journey from Stylist to candle maker!! I first discovered her beautiful candles a year or so ago via Instagram and have been intrigued to know a little more of what goes on behind the scenes for a

1)   Hi Semra, Can you tell us a little bit about yourself  and what led you to making candles?

Hey, yes sure… I am a very sensitive and loyal scorpio! I like to practice feel good magic.. I love the whole psycho- spiritual aspect of it.  I guess I would consider myself an eclectic witch who uses a little of this and a little of that! 

My journey to making candles has been varied, I was a fashion stylist for about 11 years, I wasn’t enjoying it for multiple reasons.  I decided to quit and go to University to study psychology, I loved learning all the theories, but the whole rats and stats of it all was something that I couldn’t cope with.. I’m way too spiritual! … So I quit and my best friend and I decided to do something courageous and bonkers and set up a kickstarter and raised money to buy a motor-home and perform our comedy show in the back of! It was a total passion project and was so much fun, stressful at times, but wouldn’t change that experience for anything..

While I have had my various jobs on the go I have always been in to healing, rituals and mixing oil blends and herbs… all this is very natural to me and has really helped and empowered me through some of life's rocky times,  I wanted to create something that would make people feel good and was an accessible way to create a mini ritual at home.

2) What is different about Mama Moon soy based candles to the mass produced ones available in big shops?

Big machines aren’t mixing them up, I am! I’m in my kitchen,  I’m heating the wax and mixing in the oils that have been infused with crystals, and I'm  pouring them in to the jars all myself… Each one is individually made by me, with love, care and magic!..  I create a protective circle and put a lot of positive intention in to them.  It’s a very personal experience and I love that my customers really feel that connection with them…

3) You have mixed together two of my personal favorite scents oud and rose in your 'Love Manifestation' candle. What was the inspiration behind the scent and what led you to this combination ?

The first time I ever smelt oud was on the glamorous Arab ladies in the cosmetics department in Selfridges! The smell is so powerful and potent, a total heady aphrodisiac, which is why it goes so well with rose which is the  universal go to smell that has signified love for centuries… Together they can be quite  hypnotic!!

4) What candle do you light when you have had a stressful day? 

Oh my its so hard to decide! Moon Ritual is my number one  its so warming and comforting... If I'm  having a bath it would have to be Healing and Meditation ( thats my cats favourite one too!)

5) Other than light a candle , what other ways do you like to relax at home?

I love cooking… now its cold, I’ll be cooking stews or soups – getting cosy in my pijamas, chill with my cat and watch some netflix!

Mama Moon Candles

6) you left a successful career in styling to start Mama Moon . what advice would you give to readers thinking about starting a small business?

If you have an idea GO FOR IT!  Remember that you don’t have to start with a big professional product launch you can start small and that way it is really easy to learn from mistakes and see what works and what doesn’t. Don’t sabotage yourself with perfectionism, as it is a form of procrastination in disguise! Share your ideas with friends and family, don’t be shy about it! If you are feeling a little un-confident book in a few sessions with a life coach. I had a really amazing life coach at the beginning of Mama Moon and she definitely taught me some really useful tips that I still tap in to now… I would also recommend entrepreneurial podcasts.. Its very reassuring to know that everyone started somewhere and its also a good motivator to know that hard work does pay off! 

7) What has been your proudest moment/ what do you appreciate the most about/of  Mama Moon?

I love that my candles have become part of peoples sacred spaces and that they are part of peoples intention setting rituals. That really is an honour. I am always so touched when my customers send me photos and tell me how happy my candles make them … That connection is a real honour makes me truly buzz!

I see that you have recently organised a foraging and smudge making workshop have you any other plans for mama moon's growth or new products in the near future?
Yes… I've got some really cool stuff cooking in the kitchen ( and other places ) All will be revealed very soon!!!! I have also really enjoyed sharing my moon rituals this year.. So definitely more of them too!

A massive thank you to Semra for taking the time to talk to Moon to Moon xx

To try Semra's Mama Moon Candles visit her webshop here, she can also be found on Instagram

Semra at her pop up shop in London Last year