Nununu – minimalist design magic

When dressing my boys I like to mix up bold prints with minimalist colours, one brand I have been going to for the last few years has been Nununu, the brilliant Israeli brand which season after season brings out perfectly designed clothes that are timeless, yet on trend and always with the same beautiful quality.

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Creatures and Features

Sometimes I get completely blown away by a new product and this is one of those products! From the time I set my eyes on “Creatures and Features“, I knew I had to  try it out and review one!

Creating your own creature on a t-shirt by iron on pictures is such a fantastic idea and I knew my eldest son Jasper, my little artist, would love creating his very own customised creature t-shirt.

Gorgeously packaged, the tee arrives inside a cardboard carry bag with the tee, instructions and iron on features all included in a cute little packet. The designs and the quality of the tee is just fantastic.

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creatures and features 2After unpacking and washing the tee as per instructions; a day later we got to work on creating our creature by cutting out each part. We made a few different designs before we decided on the final creature.

Included in each pack are both girl and boy features and there are more than enough features available for the tee. So much so, they will soon be selling blank t-shirt’s so that you can create creatures for other siblings.

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We had so much fun creating our little creature and it was a fab afternoon activity that both boys enjoyed helping to create. The iron on features really come to life once you have ironed them on and slowly peeled them off once they have cooled. My boys clapped and squealed in awe after the creature had been revealed.

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Creatures and Features is a sister company to Neve and Hawk who are a brilliant US based clothing company that caught my eye last year not only due to their beautiful yet comfortable clothing range but in part to their philanthropic ways; they donate money towards arts in public schools in America. But back to that part later on.

Creatures and Features was created because their darling daughter Neve loves to draw “fashion” when owner Kris is working. That gave them the idea to find a way for her to create her own fashion masterpiece and thus Creatures and Features came to life!

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With their motto “Fight for Creativity” they have helped to combine their love of fashion and support of the arts in one amazingly designed product. Each t-shirt allows the child to become their own artist.

All the tees and features are hand drawn by Kris’s husband, Bob.  He then takes those drawings and makes them into graphics and iron ons. Creatures and Features is proudly designed and made in the US, it took over a year for them to source a local iron-on company with the outstanding quality they desired.

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With so many plans for a young vibrant company, I can see so much in store for their future. But more importantly, I adore what this company is about and giving back to the community and being socially responsible, this is a company with a huge future ahead. I believe arts whether it is drama, drawing, dance, painting, or writing, deserves more recognition, especially for our kids and the youth of today. Art allows them to express themselves and provides them with a creative outlet to focus their energies. Without art in the world, it would be a very depressing place. As such a company that sees the importance of art and creativity for our children, is a company that is thinking about our children’s future. And that is just what Creatures and Features is doing!

GIVEAWAY: for your chance to win one of these fantastic t-shirts and create your own creature, comment below.

Disclosure: We received the t-shirt as a gift in order to review this product.

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The creative genius that is Laura Blythman

Having already bought a gorgeous pineapple print by talented creative genius Laura Blythman as a gift for a friend and a “Throw glitter in today’s face” for myself, I have completely fallen in love with all of her stunning designs.

Each piece of art is an absolute wonder filled with beauty, colour and light. Each piece has so many intricate details yet they are presented in such whimsical, fun and irreverent fashion that you can’t but smile at each piece. Any of her pieces, would look amazing in any kids room or indeed anywhere in your house!

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Laura is a Melbourne based designer and illustrator whose works have featured across numerous well known Australian brands like Cotton on Kids, La De Dah kids and Lark.

I was very privileged to get to know a little more about the downright amazingly talented artist more about her life and work.

 Meet the Maker series with Laura Blythman:

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Tell us a little about yourself and your amazing career thus far?

After completing a BA in Graphic Design at The Australian Academy of Design, I cut my teeth working in-house at Hallmark Cards Australia, Cristina Re and Typo (Cotton On) before branching out into the freelance world.

Over the years I feel like I’ve designed and illustrated for a pretty diverse range of things: greeting cards, gift packaging, stationery, home office, decor, textiles, apparel, wedding and event stationery, brand identity, blogs, advertising, print collateral and web bits.

There are still A LOT of things on my wish list though. The dream is to create them under my own brand or through awesome collaborations with ace labels that I admire.Bedding, ceramics, soft furnishings, books… dreams.

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What inspires your designs?

This is always a hard question, because it’s actually a pretty unconscious thing. It’s just what I do, images get in my head and stay there for a while until I get them out on paper. Sometimes inspiration comes from colour, nature, music, friends, daydreaming or even just getting out my boxes and trays full of painted paper scraps and making things up as I go!

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All your pieces are filled with such vibrant intense colour, how do you go about creating each piece?

I’m drawn to colour because it just makes me so happy, it never fails to lift my mood. When I’m creating new work I decide on a colour palette first. Always. At present, I can’t get away from neon pink and peach.

Lately my process involves… covering loads of big sheets of beautiful watercolour paper in a variety of delicious colours and copper or gold leaf. Then I cut the sheets up into a million pieces and put them back together again as new artworks. I often add my signature hand drawn and painted detail too.

BLUE-BUNNYWhat was your favourite thing to draw or create as a child?

When I was young I always loved to cut, paste and layer paper and as a teen I would spend days drawing detailed illustrations of my teen idols (think – Eddie Vedder / Kurt Cobain. ha! )… Some of my happiest childhood memories revolve around the art and craft supplies I received as presents every birthday and christmas.

In my early 20′s while studying, I worked in Art supplies stores which really opened my eyes to other ways to be creative other than draw with a pencil. So I guess in some form or another I’ve always been doing exactly what I still do now. Drawing, cutting + pasting, creating, making things.

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What aspirations do you have for the future and what would be your dream project?

I’m secretly working on a job that has been on my list of dream opportunities and I can’t wait to be able to talk about that!  Another big dream of mine is to work on a collaborative range for an awesome local or international fashion or home ware’s label!  I also have so, so many very clever and creative friends who I’m hoping to collaborate with soon too.

Other than that I’m really focused on creating more art, exhibiting more and releasing more products.  I love what I do and I feel like I am on a good path, I just have to keep going, keep saying yes to amazing opportunities and trust my instincts.

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I love what you do as well Laura and so do so many others around the world. I cannot wait to see more from Laura in 2015.  This interview was from last year but excerpts were recovered from drafts on my old blog. 

If you love any of Laura’ prints, you can also find them on t-shirts, totes, pillowcases and vests at Club of Odd Volumes.

To check out more of her prints

All photos have been reproduced with the written permission of Laura Blythman.

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