Giddy Up Gertrude – “Revez en Grand” doll collection

As a child and as an adult, I love and adore dolls, so I am so very excited and truly honoured to present a gorgeous new handmade doll collection by GiddyUpGertrude, which is launching this Wednesday, 3rd of December. These dolls are seriously so sweet and beautiful. You will want to collect them all!

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All dolls are designed and handmade on the Australian Gold Coast, by Jaimi Lee Pennell. With a childhood love of creating and drawing, not to mention building fairy houses in her garden, it seems that Jaimi was destined to turn this passion into a creative talent as an adult.

Each doll is hand stitched and takes 4-5 hours to complete with hundreds of hand stitches going in to make each doll’s face.  All the materials are sourced from local shops or from fellow WAHM ( work at home mothers) running online shops.

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The first collection from GiddyUpGertrude is aptly titled “Revez en Grand” or “Dream Big” and there will be 10 -15 dolls each individually made, with their own character, name and styling.  Gorgeous names like Stella, Valerie, Suki, Mabel and Eden.  Every doll has been designed with removable clothing and there will soon be a range of Giddy Up Gertrude dresses, kimonos and gorgeous faux fur vests which will launch in the next 12 months. Oh my, I cannot wait to see the sweetest of doll’s clothing for these divine dolls!

Not only has Jaimi turned her hand to dolls but she has also made 2 limited edition stunning pink flamingos for Wednesday and some seriously cute Watermelon bags. This gorgeous mama is beyond talented!

I wanted to find out more about the inspiration, design and background of this new fabulous mumpreneur enterprise and I took the opportunity to ask Jaimi a few questions about “GiddyUpGertrude”:

Meet the Maker: Jaimi Lee Pennell

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Your dolls are truly stunning fashionista style pieces, what inspired your first doll collection, “Revez en Grand”, what is your background and how long has GiddyUpGertrude been in the making?

As a mother of 2 boys I don’t get to indulge in the gorgeous little girls fashion available at present, so this doll range has allowed me to get my fix of sequins, divinely soft tulles & all things pretty & pastel.

I taught myself how to sew almost 3 years ago, it was a way for me to cope and manage my Post Natal Depression. From this, my ability & confidence grew & creating really became a passion. Like a lot of people I started to make dolls using some great simple doll patterns that are easily available. However as my confidence grew I found myself really wanting to create a doll that reflected my soul & creativity, and the concept of GiddyUpGertrude was born. It has been a long road to create a pattern that I am 100% happy with, about 40 hrs of pattern testing in total, but I am so proud of how this first collection has come together.

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Given that you have children of your own, are they the first testers of your dolls? 

Haha, yes my toddler is known as the “destructor” tester! It is his job to make sure my dolls can stand up to the over affectionate cuddles & oddles of kisses they will receive in their life time.

As a child yourself, growing up, what was your favourite doll to play with and do you think it has helped to inspire you to create GiddyUpGertrude?

As a child my favourite doll was an old handmade ragdoll made by my great grandma’s sister. I loved her until her felt face had almost worn off & I actually rescued her from the bin a few times, as my mum thought she needed to be thrown away. Needless to say my love of dolls started very early, & has continued through to adulthood.

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As your collection is aptly named “Dream Big” which is one of my favourite sayings, what made you take the HUGE plunge and finally realise your dream of making dolls and creating such beauty? To be 100% honest, like many young families our budget is tight & the thought of leaving my two beautiful boys to go back out into the work force broke my heart. Which is why I am fully committed to making GiddyUpGertrude a successful brand.

The response so far on Instagram for your dolls has been so exciting, there is a real buzz and anticipation for the release of your collection. I can and will predict that it will sell out within minutes, where do you see the future of GiddyUpGertrude?

I am so amazed at the response my dolls have had so far. After starting a little under a month ago, I never dreamed of them getting so much attention and praise! Its pretty overwhelming.

My dream for GiddyUpGertrude is to walk into fabulous boutiques and see my dolls proudly displayed. That would be an amazing accomplishment.

Finally, I am sure there is a little story behind the brilliant name, do tell, what is the story behind Giddy Up Gertrude?

Well, remember my favourite rag doll I spoke about? She was made by my great grandma’s sister, Gertrude. So I thought it was only fitting that the woman that ignited my love of handmade dolls, to get a special mention.

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What a beautiful story filled with courage and bravery, overcoming post natal depression to create this beyond perfect doll collection by the sweetest of doll makers,  Jaimi, all whilst having a new born baby strapped to her and her toddler using her photography props as car jumps! I can see that this first collection of dolls, is but the start of amazing things to come for GiddyUpGertrude.

RRP: GiddyUpGertrude dolls will be A$120.00 and will be released for sale at 11am QLD time on Wednesday 3rd December.

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Disclosure: I have not received any gift or payment for this feature.

My Little Dreamer

This Christmas gift guide “My Little Dreamer” is inspired by the child that loves to dream at night and day dream when it is light. You know the child, they will wander down the street with you, holding your hand and they get lost in another world, as they take in their wondrous surroundings. They dawdle, they dream, they wonder, they ponder and they imagine. They sleep with vivid dreams at night, and awake from another world in the morning. This little dreamer will turn into a big believer one day soon!

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1.  To help any dreamer to sleep, try this Case Studyo X Friends with You – Little Cloud Lamp

2.  The perfect print for any Little Dreamer, by Ingrid Petrie Design

3.  These softies make beautiful sleeping companions  “Famille Goutte” from Zu- Boutique

4.  Sweetest dreams with “Rosy the dreamer” pillowcase from One in Melon Designs.

5. A gorgeous tee for any dreamer, “Catch my Dreams” tee from Feather Drum

6. Organic cotton swirly cloud leggings from Candy Kirby Designs

7. The perfect tee for any night dreamer, “Moon tee” by Feather 4 Arrow 

8. A fab book to help those children who may struggle with bad dreams at night,  The Dream Jar by Lindan Lee Johnson and illustrated by Serena Curmi

9. For the softest cutest cuddly try Blabla apple pillow  for your sweetest dreamer

10. Stunning star petite light for a gorgeous night light from Fromage La Rue

 

Toy of the month – October 2014

This month, (sorry I know I am a little late for October!), I am super excited to review a stunningly illustrated personalised book by lostmy.name. I was introduced to this company by an awesome friend of mine,  who had seen them on Dragon’s Den in the UK. I was kindly given a book by them to review for the blog.

In looking at the personalised kids book on their website,  what I adored most were the illustrations. They were so beautifully creative and I knew my youngest son would adore reading a book all about his name.  Plus what child doesn’t love a story that includes dragons, unicorns, and even a Narbalek?!

I clicked on the “Create your book” section on the website and added in Hudson’s name and that he was a boy and you can also add in a personal dedication for the first page of the book.

A few weeks later our book arrived in Australia.

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My Little Artist – Christmas gift guide

Inspired by own son who is the happiest when he is drawing or colouring on notepads, scrap paper, paper towel holders, boxes and more. This one is for you, my beautiful Jasper.

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1. For colouring fun on a giant scale, try the  Omy Design and Play Giant Colouring poster

2. For finger painting fun and travel friendly, the Finger painting set by NPW

3.  To inspire and captivate your little artist to learn about the history of art this book is amazing,  If I were an Artist by Minus Editions

4.  Your little artist will love designing their own monster tee, Creatures and Features by Neve and Hawk

5. For every budding artist,  The Artist long sleeved tee by Organic Zoo

6. Stunning rudolph crayons bv Crayonbox2013

7. All artist’s need something to draw with and what better pencils than these,  Slogan pencil from Bonne Nuit

8. Ebery artist needs somewhere to sketch their creations and this one is a great gift idea, “Oh what fun” by ordinaryartists

9. For one of the best artists and illustrators in the business, Herve Tullet – Mix it up

10. A great little notebook to bring out the fun in drawing and help them create, How to dress a fox by Wee Gallery 

Bandit Kids SS15 – The Kingdom of Cool

I am super excited and truly honored to show you some sneak peaks of the SS15 collection from one of my favourite kids clothing brands, Bandit Kids.

Hitting the kids fashion scene with well deserved  fanfare earlier this year, they have gone from strength to strength. With 2 collections so far, showcasing some amazing artist collaborations with Emma Battaglia aka Pax and Hart and  in house typographer/friend Ruben de Haas for AW15 and SS15, they are utterly rocking the world of kids fashion.

This season I think is arguably their best yet, and that is saying something as their last two collections have been beyond amazing.

Designed in Australia and made ethically in Indonesia, I can attest to the fantastic quality of each piece. They wash and wear oh so well. My eldest son adores his Bandit Kids clothing ( they make from ages 3+) and he chooses to wear them above all others.

So what is their SS15 “Kingdom of Cool” collection all about?

Do you remember those lazy summer days as a child where you didn’t really get up to much?  Maybe you had a swim in your friends pool, rode your bike to the shops to get an ice cream,  you climbed trees or you and your mate did the big hike to the beach in the sweltering heat?

Days were long, blisteringly hot and summer holidays stretched for hours, days and weeks. You longed for them never to end… Mix that summer vibe with cool pastel and retro neutral prints of palm trees, ice creams, parrots, flamingos and swimming pools and this is exactly where you find the “Kingdom of Cool” reigning supreme!

 

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Photographer: Lizz Pennings

Styled by: They Called It Paradise

Location: Brisbane suburbs

Pray4Trax Necklaces: The Little Vikings

Sunglasses: Sons + Daughters

Shoes: Saltwater Sandals

Plus video by Levi Cranston

https://vimeo.com/110973397

For more info about this season:

www.banditkids.com.au

All images reproduced by Kids Gifts and Toys with permission from Bandit Kids.

Monpetitzoreol – cute toy storage solution

I always love new and fun ways to store toys and when I saw these gorgeous toy paper bags from french label Monpetitzoreol, I knew I had to have one!

Designed by hand and printed onto vinyl stickers  these toy storage bags are super cute and would look fab in any kids room.

For myself, it was a tough choice as I adored Audrey’s  panda designs and it was this designe that caught my eye in the first place.  However,  our boys new room design is  a mix of super heroes, alongside pops of mint, grey and monochrome, so I thought the mask was perfect. I love the design and I thought the gold would compliment my colour scheme in the room.

Disclosure: we purchased the gold mask toy storage bag and we were very kindly gifted the sweet mint star.

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