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Author Archives: Sheree

New Year Thoughts and a bit of Pantone

69_3087697_orig“This season there is a move toward the cooler and softer side of the color spectrum. An eclectic, ethereal mix of understated brights, pale pastels and nature-like neutrals take center stage as designers draw from daydreams of simpler times. Remembrances of retro delights, folkloric and floral art, and the magical worlds of tropical landscapes restore a sense of well-being as we head into warmer months.

Many feel compelled to be connected around the clock because we are afraid we’ll miss something important. There is a growing movement to step out and create ‘quiet zones’ to disconnect from technology and unwind, giving ourselves time to stop and be still. Color choices follow the same minimalistic, ‘en plein air’ theme, taking a cue from nature rather than being reinvented or mechanically manipulated. Soft, cool hues blend with subtle warm tones to create a soothing escape from the everyday hustle and bustle.”

Leatrice Eiseman Executive Director, Pantone Color Institute®

I like this quote from Leatrice. I think especially after the hectic few days of Christmas – I cooked for nine family members for the first time, it went down rather well but was absolutely exhausting! – when the Christmas break actually kicked in, it was really nice to sit back and appreciate spare time and freeness. We’re so totally a part of this technological age of using our phone, and tablets, and social media for everything we do, whether we want to/like it or not, because yeah, I guess we are afraid of ‘missing out’. It’s a part of who we are now, how we communicate and how we promote our business, and everyone is doing it! So it’s no wonder really.

The Christmas holiday gave me a chance to catch up on those ‘real’ things that we tend to miss out on and forget about when we’re a part of the daily grind. Like reading an actual magazine, playing a tangible game with the family, have a real-time, face-to-face conversation with family and friends, going for walks and enjoying sleep.

I felt fresh, relaxed and focused by the time I returned to work in the New Year, and reading this review from Pantone made me think again about colour and trends for the New Year. I think this calm laid back, natural theme is a refreshing way to go. Not just in colour and trends but in personal ways and attitude. Simple, pared back and uncomplicated, minimal stress and appreciating the natural and real things around us, rather than virtual – this could be my New Year’s resolution.

I’ve found some images that I think represent this feeling, whether it’s inspiration for a wedding, general ideas or just something that makes you smile, I hope they add some calmness to your day!

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New Product Alert!

OMG how exciting.. We have a new product at Cute Maps! It’s so hot off the press that it’s not even on the site yet, so read on for exclusive info on ‘The Journey Map’.

So, like our Gift Maps, this indeed makes a gorgeous custom made, personal gift. But these are totally based on ‘a journey’, whatever weird, wonderful, glorious happy thing that may be. The Journey Map can contain a lot more detail than the Gift Map, which is based on a background of a curly path travelling from January right through to December, so you can document A WHOLE YEAR in an extremely cute, fun and colourful way. We can include buildings, landmarks, milestones, achievements, fun days, text, descriptions… so much! As well as a very fetching cute cartoon take on whoever the Journey Map is dedicated to.

This really would make an amazing gift for anytime of year or occasion, Christmas, Birthday, Anniversary, Graduation, you name it, we’ll design it! Utterly personal and totally bespoke to your information and specifications. What better way to document your memories? We hope you love them as much as we do!

Web page coming soon, but prices start at £160 for your custom made design. Just drop us an email at info@cutemaps.co.uk with any queries in the meantime and take a look at the fab design below!

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Local Business Alert! Get your print on with one69A

54_4370494Manchester Local business alert!

This week were talking about getting creative with one69A. Oh the fun to be had when printing your own tshirts.

This is a really unique and totally not cheesy hen and stag idea where you and your fellow hens or stags can print t-shirts for the whole group, which will be ready to wear by the end of the workshop. We love alternative ideas at Cute Maps and this one not only gives you the opportunity to print your own bespoke tees that you keep, for like ever! But also lets you get creative with your group of chosen people and learn a few new skills.

Each workshop is tailored to suit your requirements and desired themes and they can they work with any group size.

These guys are totally mobile so as well as providing a central Manchester venue, they can also come to your location.

Get your print on!

To find out more, visit www.one69a.com / @one69a or email the printing gurusally@one69a.com

All I want for Christmas! Our Top 20 Treats List

All I want for Christmas….! We’ve put together a bunch of delectable delights (mainly ‘for her’ of course!) of our top 20 needs and wants for Christmas this year, in no particular order. Any one of these would make a totally luxe gift for any special lady in your life, Chanel nail polish for your best friend, stylish Liberty stationary for your colleague, Charbonnel et Walker chocolates for your mum… there’s so many beautiful gifts to choose from but these are our highlights at Cute Maps this year, so if any of you are stuck for ideas – I put this list together (hint!)

 

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 Above: 1.Chanel Nail Polish £18

2. Chanel Noir Perfume £106 for 100ml

3.Chanel Rouge Coco Lipstick £25

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Above: Liberty 2015 Navy Leather Diary £60 – Also available as a note book

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Above: Emma Bridgewater for Liberty Mug £24.95

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Above: 1. Liberty Fudge £7.95

2. Liberty Scarf £65

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Above: House of Hackney Velvet Cushions £145

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Above: House of Hackney Set of Three Notebooks £14

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Above: 1. Christian Lacroix A6 Notebook £12

2. Fortnum & Mason Biscuits £25

3. Fornasetti Candle £99

4. Diptyque Candle £45

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Above: The Jewel Box by Prestat £24.95

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Above: Charbonell et Walker Truffles £12.95

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Above: Pierre Hardy Pouch £135 (small) £160 (large)

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Purple Trim Phone Amazon £19.99

That should do it!

Present Wrapping Ideas and Inspiration

26_7148075_origIt’s that time of year again… lots of money is spent, lots of things are bought, and we only hope that our loved ones are going to love and appreciate what we have spent so much time and effort on over the last few weeks. This year I’m concentrating on small but meaningful, less expensive but well thought out pressies for the family. And with the ever growing group of friends, Secret Santa is always great idea as it definitely saves a few pennies! I really do believe though that a well wrapped present, wrapped with effort and time, love and a hint of creativity really makes the difference to the look of a present, especially if you’re like me this year and ‘trying’ to pull back on overspending.

My family love their food and being half Sicilian we love our Italian delights! I’m planning on heading to the Manchester Christmas Food Markets and stocking up on Italian biscuits, cakes, and these huge round ‘cakes’ which are entirely made out of chocolate and cut into slices which look like crazy lush soaps! I like the idea of wrapping them in clear cellophane so you can see the colourful nutty beauties that sit within, sealed off with an abundance of colourful ribbon and name tagged with a funny photo of them – which is also a little extra pressie. Or, place them in a Kilner jar which would be great to keep them fresh, and write their name and a little message with a glass pen on the front. This could also double up as a great biscuit/coffee/tea container of the future!

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For more ideas on bespoke tags and custom Christmas cards and gifts made with love, why not head to the Cute Maps website: http://www.cutemaps.co.uk/cutechristmas.html to check out our first EVER Christmas Shop? There’s still plenty of time to order and just drop us an email with any weird and wonderful queries! See below for a little teaser!

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Here are some great ideas to give you some wrapping inspiration… and it really doesn’t have to cost much, just a little bit more time and effort maybe, but it is Christmas after all!

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Cute Maps Christmas Shop Launch!

This is really exciting for us, as you can imagine! Our first EVER Cute Maps Christmas shop where you can purchase not only two wonderful personalised Christmas gifts: the Gift Map and Customised Calendar, but for the first time ever we have launched Custom Illustrated Christmas Cards and Gift Tags. Check out our new page here http://www.cutemaps.co.uk/cutechristmas.html

Our Cute Maps Gift Map is a truly wonderful personalised Christmas present. We are accustomed to receiving many weird and wonderful map concepts from ‘Our Journey Together’, ‘Our World Trip’ to ‘Our Road Rally’, so how about ‘Our First Christmas’? We’d love to hear your ideas, so if you have something in mind just get in touch! We recommend up to approximately 5-6 locations on your Cute Maps, if you require more, just get in touch for a custom quote, we are very accommodating! Prices start at £120 for black and white or one colour, and order by the 8th December for delivery in time for Christmas. Click here to see more info http://www.cutemaps.co.uk/giftmap.html

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Another delightful option is our brand new Custom Illustrated Calendar, what better gift to keep your family and friends organised for 2015! A super cute bespoke custom illustrated calendar sitting pretty on its very own wooden easel! Each calendar consists of 12 individual postcards for each month, printed with illustrated head shots of your friends, family or pets on high quality textured card. The back of each card hosts a section for your personal notes. Each calendar can cater up to 6 characters including pets… what a great personalised pressie! Prices start at £13.00 for one. As a special treat we also have an amazing FREE SHIPPING offer on this item, which is usually £7.00, all you need to do is select ‘No Shipping’ from the delivery drop down box at the checkout page. Order ASAP to get your Christmas cards in time, but the last day to order for Christmas delivery on your cards is 10th December. Click here to see more info http://www.cutemaps.co.uk/calendar.html

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Continue the personalised theme by greeting your friends and family with Cute Maps Christmas cards including an mini illustrated you! Each of these cute cards can feature up to 6 custom illustrations of your family, friends or pets! All you have to do is send us photos of whoever you’d like to include with your order to info@cutemaps.co.ukand we will design away! Prices start at £18.00 for 20. Order ASAP to get your Christmas cards in time, but the last day to order for Christmas delivery on your cards is 10th December, FREE SHIPPING is also available on this item. Click on this link for more info http://www.cutemaps.co.uk/christmascards.html

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Why not match your special bespoke Christmas cards with personalised Gift Tags?! Make tagging your presents cute and easy with these custom Christmas tags. Each tag can feature a motif of your choice. All you need to do is view the pictures in the gallery to pick one, or why not use one of the characters that you’ve had previously designed from your custom calendar and Christmas card? Prices start at £8.00 for 24. The last day to order your tags is 16th December and FREE SHIPPING once again! Have a look at this link for more info and images http://www.cutemaps.co.uk/christmastags.html

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If you have any questions, just send us a little email and I’m sure we can put something great together for you… Merry Cute Christmas to all! And for more info just click here http://www.cutemaps.co.uk/cutechristmas.html

Ombre Obsessed!

1_6894348_origOmbre refers to colour fading from dark to light, or vice versa. In French, the word “ombre” means shadow or shade, and we’ve gone pretty crazy for this trend, (the boss loves it!) However, as with all trends they can get totally overdone, and become way to incorporated into the mass market. But remember this idea was born from ‘dip dye’ which, if you’re a bit of a creative, you’ll have been doing it to everything from crop t-shirts to curtains to your dog (kidding) for years! So really, the original dip dye just had a new name and the world became obsessed with it. What I like about it though (apart from the idea of playing with colours) is that it’s totally DIY-able, easy, fun, and fairly cheap too.

Calling out to you colour fiends, this might be a great thing to incorporate into your wedding styling. There’s so many YouTube vids on how to do it that you really can’t go wrong, and if it does, then what a perfect job for your bridesmaids to get involved in! We’ve come across some great ideas including pretty table cloths in varying shades of purple, ombre flower bouquets, cakes going from deep navy blue to baby blue to white, beautiful watercolour stained stationary and menus, and if you want to be really bold – dip dye the dress! I’m thinking Gwen Stefani style of course.

I think if it was me, I like the idea of an ombre table cloth, going from fuchsia pink to white via slow gradients, then dressed with crisp black and white table wear, including some stripes, with gold cutlery and centrepieces, probably filled with ombre flowers going from black, to dark purple to white. That way it wouldn’t be too over done, not too much ombre going on but the largest piece i.e. the table cloth would be the real showstopper…one can dream 🙂

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Modes of Transport

Thinking about how you’re going to get from the ceremony to the venue? What mode of transport would best sum you both up? My best friends who got married 6 years ago in Manchester only needed to travel the short distance from The Place Hotel, where the ceremony took place, to the Midland Hotel for the reception. Their idea was via Manchester black cab! No, she didn’t hail one down last minute in her amazing Ian Stewart dress, it was all planned of course. The black cab was dressed with white ribbon, and five minutes later, the bride and groom had zoomed up Oxford Road to their destination.

This was a great idea in my opinion as the couple are lovers of the City of Manchester so black cab just seemed a perfect way to go. All us guests walked the short journey in our wedding gear! Which gave us the perfect opportunity to talk about the gorgeous ceremony and also the chance to meet fellow guests on route to the meal. The Manchester weather held out that afternoon, thank God! So we were at venue and dry! (totally different story at night though!)

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Over a decade ago when my sister got married, my dad had his burgundy Mercedes Benz at the time, and she decided to volunteer dad as chauffeur and again dressed the car with thick white ribbon and flowers. It was just spot on. It meant so much to my sister to use my dad’s pride and joy for the day, and my dad was truly honoured. The whole thing looked fab.

Modes of transport for me are yet another way on your wedding day to show some personality. Use something that really has meaning for you both as a couple and it will be a great thing for your guests to witness, a great memory, and a there’s probably some great pictures to come out of it too! Add colourful balloons, tin cans, banners, flowers, anything that you love and this will set it off even more.

I am neither getting married, nor have a mode of transport (well apart from the tram-get the violins out) but I can imagine turning up at the venue in a little Italian car, a classic Fiat 500 or Lancia, in either black, white or pale pink or pale blue, dressed with tonnes of contrasting balloons and oodles of ribbon. (I haven’t thought about this at all) I think this would best sum me up in a mode of transport 🙂

At Cute Maps, we’ve designed some brilliant requests for our clients, whether they are travelling via motorbike, traditional Rolls Royce, tandem, tractor (?!) it’s all been part of their amazing story and so well fitting to their day.

Here are some of our favourite images of quirky and meaningful modes of transport. Have love, will travel x

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Gold!

Winter is fast approaching, dark mornings, dark nights, sub-zero times, blah! But there’s something truly romantic about winter weddings isn’t there? Cosy, warm and sparkly, so a hint of gold would be quite the welcome guest at a winter wedding to add some extra glam.

I actually happen to like dark evenings (not a fan of the morning though) and I think that the best advantage of a winter wedding is the fact that you can start the evening do a little earlier, therefore more time to party! You can really make the most of using sparkly fairy lights on outdoor trees, and go wild with lanterns and tea-lights making the scene magical and the whole experience more intimate and cosy, which also lends itself well to smaller parties.

A friend of mine is getting married mid-November, she’s going for gold nails, gold glitter on her cake, sparklers and a firework display. I think this will all bode very well for a creative and interesting bunch of photos too!

Here are some gorgeous low cost DIY ideas that we have found to introduce extra decadence to your day… It doesn’t have to be showy or over the top though, just a hint of gold is plenty and goes hand in hand perfectly with the winter months ahead.

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Halloween Wedding, if you dare…

So, Halloween weddings? This has to be the King of themed weddings, right? I think it’s a pretty cool idea, you’re not going to be disappointed by bad weather, as we already expect it in autumn, and if your tendencies veer towards the quirky anyway it’s a perfect opportunity to go a little bit wild, and get your guests involved too! No pastels allowed! It doesn’t have to be all blood and gore though, oh no. We’ve found some fabulous classy and fun ideas for a sophisticated Halloween wedding. Personally I love the idea of lots of black in a wedding theme, how do you like the look of these stunning black wedding gowns? The black gold and diamond ring would be something I absolutely could not say no to! How about experimenting with fun treats, showstopping dessert tables, smoky cocktails, deep red flowers and a hint of gothic font? There are so many great ideas for a Halloween wedding, it by no means needs to be tacky or unoriginal, question is, do you dare?

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