Tuesday, 24 November 2015

Christmas Handmade Gifts Under £25

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L-R  Pink Green Shop / Angie B Studio / Pygmy Cloud / Floss and Mischief / Custom Made / Girl and Bird / Holly Rance - Shop Meggies / Oh No Rachio! / Angie B Studio

Supporting small business owners and shopping independent is really important to me this time of year. I don't like to line the pockets of large organisations who don't pay their taxes to the UK. I prefer to support the awesome creative people doing their own thing, working hard, paying their way and making really special things in their own time right here in the UK.

So here I've curated a gift guide of a few of my favourite UK maker's gifts under £25 - and a few of my own new products feature in it too! - I hope you feel a bit of gift inspiration for those people on your Christmas list who are hard to buy for!  Beats another iTunes voucher, right?

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Pink Green Shop

Cathy makes the most beautiful necklaces and earrings, I know this because I collaborated with her on the Cathy + Angie Necklace Collection - but aside from this collection she also makes glass button earrings, necklaces and also a lovely collection of Liberty Fabric Jewellery that is just gorgeous. These are just £10.00 here - or you can check out her full shop here.

 photo new_bag_600_blog_zpsfd43yynm.jpg Angie B Studio

Everyone needs a good shopper/tote bag to put all their 'stuff' in! Whether it's Mum stuff, uni stuff, gym stuff, work stuff, or shopping stuff, us girls have a lot of 'stuff' which is why we make great Hunter Gatherers! They're just £14.50 - so grab your's here.

 photo Pygmy_Cloud_wrapping_tape_zps5ebyshm9.jpg Pygmy Cloud

I love wrapping Christmas presents - and I spied this tape from the cute little shop Pygmy Cloud, isn't it adorable? They also have lots of other lovely gifts and homewares in their shop that you'll love too!  The tape is priced at £4.50 - £5.95 - Take a look here.

 photo floss_and_mischief_embroidery_2_zpst0xxtycr.jpg Floss and Mischief

Cross stitch is taking the world over again and this cross stitch kit is super lovely and designed by cross stitch queen Genevieve Brading, who heads up Floss and Mischief, the trendy needlework HQ. This kit is £14.99 and you can grab it here.

 photo Custommade_necklace_zpsmxgfju5g.jpg Custom Made UK 

I love triangle necklaces, I have a lot of them. So when I spied this triangle necklace I thought it would make the perfect gift, not just for myself (hint hint Santa) but one of my necklace loving friends too. Pick one up here for £17.50.

 photo girl_and_bird_europe_map_cusion_zpsrv14w2rh.jpg Girl and Bird

Annah Legg of Girl and Bird makes map and atlas designed cushions and homewares - she even makes custom orders of the places you love to visit the most - Whether there's a special place you and your partner got hitched, or a place you've visited that you'd love to call home.  They're made from the most gorgeous material and come without a pad for £24, or with a pad for £28, pick one up here.

 photo meggies_holly_rance_mug_zpsawy8kiqw.jpg Holly Rance / Shop Meggies

Isn't this gold printed mug adorable!  I found it on the super lovely Shop Meggie's site, and it's also in their store in Painswick, Gloucestershire - a great shop if you haven't already been - and made by the super talented Holly Rance, who makes lots of other pretty designed mugs from the Cotswolds. This gorgeous mug is £20 - Shop the collection here.

 photo Ohnorachio_notebooks_zpsul9cteua.jpg Oh No Rachio!

Rachel Basinger makes the best notebook, hands down! These are just a few of her lovelies in her online store, where she hand illustrates and designs all her handmade goods - these notebooks come in at £7.00 and £8.00 -  check her out here!

 photo Harmony_Necklace_600_blog_zpsbapuv8cl.jpg Cathy + Angie

Cathy and I collaborated on this pretty necklace collection which we've called 'The Feel Good Collection' because they also come with a selection of mini 'feel good' quote cards as gentle reminders, or to give to friends to show them how much you care.  There are three necklaces in the collection and are just £14.50 each. Choose your's here.

Happy shopping!

Ps!  You can grab a Free Delivery in my store www.angiebstudio.bigcartel.com with a Retweet of this guide!  Shhhhhhh.

See you for more gift guide inspiration soon!

Saturday, 7 November 2015

November FREE Printable and lookbook!

How November crept up on us I don't know. It's really like this year is speeding to the finish line more than ever. photo November_girl_angiebsutio_600_zpsbztqp7ak.jpg

The month of November is always a busy time of the year for us all, it's the pre-race to Christmas, after all!  So to continue on my from my previous blog post on helping you to get organised, here's another!

There's another free desk planner printable and matching desktop wallpaper to keep you inspired all month long.

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November's girl is wearing a dashing pair of Hunter wellington boots, and looking very cute in her mustard bobble hat!  Now, if only I could replicate this look - how cute is that skirt?!...er, hold on, I can! Yep, I have the full look below on my Wantfeed!

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Wantfeed is a very cool addictive website, very cool for this time of year when you're trying to collect all the things you want from from Father Christmas (que hints to your boyfriend ) ..or, just for payday to treat yourself when you can afford it... ! It's a bit like Pinterest, but a far more fashion and gift focussed and easier to curate your own 'giftlists' and groups of products you like. Whereas Pinterest is getting a bit wodded down with 'How to make $million dollars blogging' pictures and links and photos of humungus kitchens, and things you'd never make in a million years with dishsoap, Wantfeed is kind of like shopping with your best girlfriend. It's cute, cosy and stylish.

Find them all on my WANTFEED here >>> 1.  Dark grey coat    2.  Denim Button up skirt    3. Mustard Bobble Hat    4.  Mustard Beanie    5. Leather Gloves   6. Burgancy Stripe Top   7. Light Grey Marl Coat    8. Wellie Socks    9. Tan Tote/Shopper    10. Rouge Hunter Wellington Boots...

Personally, the wellies are a tad on the expensive side, but everything else is super dooper affordable, because I'm a budget babe after all.  I'm still searching for a budget pair of those wellies... but maybe if you love them, Santa can sort you out ;)

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So now we've sorted out your November wardrobe, here's your free desk planner download and matching desktop background wallpaper.  Choose which ever one your fancy and get super organised this week!

Download the Planner and Wallpapers below! 
(Terms of use :: As always with my freebie printables, they are for personal use only - they aren't to be resold, copied, or distributed as your own, or used commercially in any way, (that's not cool friend :) Credit is always very gratefully received if you are sharing them (I welcome sharing!) tag me @angiebstudio on Twitter or @angiebee on Instagram - or Contact me if you're unsure about any of these terms on mail@angiebstudio.com.  Thanks for your support!)

And as always, below are my 3 top tips to keep you productive this month:

1)  10 minute check, morning and night.
In the morning:
Before I start the day at Angie B Studio, I sit at my desk with my bowl of banana porridge, and review my list from the day before, then start a new list, writing out each point again and new points as they come up. Doing this ritual jogs my memory and makes me re-analyse each point. If there's an item that I still haven't completed, I ask myself why; - Am I waiting for a response from someone? Am I putting it off? Does something else need to happen before I can do it? Things like that. A 10 minute analysis seriously makes my productivity sky rocket.

At night:  
Before I turn off the computer in my office and go and relax for the evening, I re-read my to-do list. I start to make a few notes for the next day but nothing concrete (I do that in the morning when my mind is much clearer) I tick off what I've completed and have an overview of the day's progress.  Sometimes you'll be surprised by what you've achieved by doing this, and you must celebrate every small achievement! By making a small 10 minute window (with a cup of tea as a reward) at the end of the day is so worth it.

2)  Your top 3 priorities:  
Sure, that 'To-Do' list looks pretty Loooooong, right?  Where do you start?  Urgh, you want to go back to bed already you've got so much to do!  Help!  Relax.  Nobody can do it all.  The best way to achieve it is to get started, and to get started just focus on your top 3 things.  Do these first.  

I always find that if I knuckle down in the morning and tackle my 'must do' things first, I actually get them done, then after lunch I can tackle the smaller, ad hoc tasks and anything that crops up last minute.

3. Take your breaks

Breaks can be the most productive thing you'll do each day.  It's a time to reflect and to re-asses, adjust our sails if we've hit some storms, and plan a route of action.  I always take a good hour for lunch and a good hour in the afternoon around 3pm (when nobody is productive).... But I always put that hour back into the day later on when I find I get a 'second-wind' at about 6pm.  I use that hour when I can be productive. And between the hours of 2.30 and 3.30 I am pretty useless, so I don't try to be! (learn when your own natural productivity levels peak and fall) During these times I take my mind off and do something else - Whether it's reading, creating something for personal enjoyment, listening to some music or doing some yoga - it's scientifically proven that mind-breaks are essential to avoid burn out. So don't feel guilty, just do it, your productivity levels will thank you :)

Now go and make November awesome by achieving all those things you've wanted to do all year long! 
You CAN do it! 

AB x

Tuesday, 13 October 2015

Get organised - free printable!

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This time of year can get pretty busy for most of us. But if you think you're busy, can you imagine how busy poor Santa is this time of year - Pooohfh! He must be flat out.

So, to keep everyone on top of their game (Santa included), I decided to give you all a helping hand in the way of this cute FREE printable weekly desk planner and matching desktop wallpaper! Woohooooo *spin in your chair*.

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I will be creating one of these weekly bad-ass organiser tools for October, November and December so you can be styled with Angie B sketches all the way to the new year.

The weekly desk planner is A4 and it can be printed out weekly so that you can see whatever week you're working on in advance. I didn't make it date specific so that you can use it whenever you choose to use it.

 photo Angiebstudio_deskset_600_zpswsigzq12.jpg

 I also have two sizes of Desktop Wallpaper in small and large - so you can have one on your laptop and desktop to match.

Download the Planner and Wallpapers below! 
(Terms of use :: As always with my freebie printables, they are for personal use only - they aren't to be resold, copied, or distributed as your own, or used commercially in any way, (that's not cool friend :) Credit is always very gratefully received if you are sharing them (I welcome sharing!) tag me @angiebstudio on Twitter or @angiebee on Instagram - or Contact me if you're unsure about any of these terms on mail@angiebstudio.com.  Thanks for your support!)

 photo Angiebstudio_deskset_ohnorachio_zps7elstjtc.jpg

In other news from my little studio, I don't know if you saw it, so here it is again if you missed it, but I did an awesome little collaboration with the equally creative lady Rachel over on the Ohnorachio! blog this past month.  I showed Rachel's readers how to create a cute little painted plant pot DIY. The only plant I don't seem to be able to kill on my desk are succulents, so this tutorial will be perfect if you want to style up your succulents too!

The tutorial is super simple, great for adults and kids a like and amazingly cheap and cheerful to recreate - but looks super stylish and modern, like you could have picked them up from Anthropologie, right?!

So I hope these few freebies and ideas will help you to jazz up your creative workspace so that you can be more productive this month and feel champion by the end of it that you've achieved all these great things!

Below are my 3 top tips for productivity that really work:

1 - Write it down and break it down:  Write the task down, then break the task down into small 'bites'. It's MUCH more achievable like this, trust me.

2 - Think:  'Start where you are, use what you have, do what you can.' 
I always think back to a bootcamp instructor I used to have some years ago when I repeat this in my head.  As soon as you arrived at bootcamp, you didn't really have time to think about the painful exercises ahead, he just shouted GO! and you'd have to pull 20 burpees out of the bag.  Funny thing was, even though you didn't feel like you could do one burpee at the time, you did it every time, and made the effort, and felt great afterwards.  So blow the whistle, and start where you are.

3 - Allocate time:  When you've written down the tasks you need to achieve in the day, allocate a time frame that you think it will take to complete each one.  i.e. TASK:  'upload my accounts' TIME: '30 mins'.  And you will suddenly see the 'big' tasks look so much more easy and achievable.  Set yourself a timer, and see how long it actually takes, you'll be surprised, and your expectation will be much better the next time you have to do that not-so-fun task.

Tag me on Instagram or Twitter if you use your planner or wallpaper, I'd love to see!

Take care everybody!
AB x

My links:
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Work with me ::
My illustration portfolio ::

Thursday, 6 August 2015

How to dress up your iPhone with my new wallpaper!

Hi everyone! I hope this little blog note finds that you're well and, of course, creating lots of awesome stuff!

I have something exciting to share with you today - as a bit of a thank you from Angie B Studio to you - for your support and kindness that I receive from you via social media every day.

 photo Creativity_takes_courage_mockup_angiebstudio_zpsalszyv45.jpg There's been lots of barriers and walls during my creative career that I've had to overcome (or get hit on the head with) to get to where I am today. For all the support and kindness you receive in the creative industries you do get a lot of sh*t that goes with it. Whether it's those people telling you to 'get a proper job' or those jealous types that think 'Oh god, what's she up to now?'  to people asking 'So what did you do this week? draw pretty pictures?'  (< of which the answer is definitely no, the 'nice' drawing pictures bit probably amounts to less than 10% of my working week... but more of that on another blog post day!)

To be creative, I've learned that you need to have courage. Courage to stand out, courage to be 'different', courage to step away from being 'normal', courage to take those snide comments on the chin and to keep moving forward despite everyone's disapproval, courage to say, 'No, I'm going to take the road less travelled thanks v.much and cheerio..'

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So this is something that I've created for all you creative types for your iPhones (the image may also work on Samsungs etc, I've just not tried it on those devices, but let me know if it works on your's!) And is to remind you to take a deep breath and keep pushing forward, and keep creating, no matter what.

There are two designs to choose from, a blue, turquoise design, and also a pinky, peachy design. The latter of which actually turns the passcode keys on your lock screen pick! It's pretty awesome.

To get the FREE download, all you need to do is sign up to my new newsletter - [CLICK HERE] which will be jam packed with creative inspiration, business tips, personal insights and much more! The download link is automatically emailed to you on sign up (so do check your junk folders if you don't see it after a few minutes).

Just a quick note on 'Terms if use' - these FREE downloads are for personal use only.  They can't be used commercially, copied, resold, or claimed as your own designs. That's not cool friend.  If you'd like me to create a commercial wallpaper or license for you, just pop me an email, I'm sure I can help. But as for these designs, please be a cool creative friend and use them for personal enjoyment only. (NB: all my designs are registered.) If you share via social media, it would be really awesome if you could tag me so that your followers can find me - I'm @angiebee on Instagram or @angiebstudio on Twitter.
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Directions to use:  When downloaded, click and hold the images and save to your camera roll. Then, to set up as your wallpaper, just click on 'SETTINGS' then choose 'WALLPAPERS'  and choose 'Choose a new wallpaper'  then navigate to the image from your camera roll or photo album. This will then give you a preview of what it will look like - Click on 'SET' and then you will have a choice to set up as your 'LOCK SCREEN' or your 'HOME SCREEN'  or  'BOTH'  click which you'd prefer to set and save.  Et voila!

Thanks again for your support, enjoy your new phone design, let me know all the great things you're creating, and I look forward to you receiving my brand new newsletter (Shhh there's another exciting giveaway on the first edition that you'll love)!!


Saturday, 20 June 2015

Wanderlust - how to travel - Part 1

 photo travel_quote_angiebstudio_com_zpscmj3jxlg.jpg

In 2008 I bought a ticket on a bit of a whim, not really knowing where I was going or where my adventures would take me. I simply held a piece of paper in my hand and waved it at the flight attendent at Heathrow a few months later, and crossed my fingers.

It was the most expensive thing I had ever bought. But boy, was it going to be worth it.

I didn't know what to expect from my travelling experience - maybe a nice tan and a few visits to the beach - but I absolutely wouldn't have expected, in my wildest dreams, the incredible experiences that lay ahead of me. 

If you're young and don't have any ties, I would absolutely tell you with no uncertainty that you must travel. Stop buying shoes and handbags, save some money, and buy the most amazing memories you'll ever own.

There are a number of reasons why (and I will document them in this blog over the coming months), but here's one to go on with;

I'll forever be grateful for the photograph below. It as taken by my friend Neil in the Blue Mountains in NSW Australia. We'd rented a car and decided to drive south on a road trip and it is still one of the best trips I've ever taken.

 photo blue_mountains_angiebstudio_com_zpstqasemmu.jpg

Arriving in the Blue Mountains late in the day, we'd driven a long way in over 40 degree heat to get there - and the mercury had even hit 43 degrees at one point (Phoofh, that's hot). We had the air conditioning full blast in the car, but even that was warmish. We rolled down the window and stuck our arms outside to see what it felt like - 43 degree heat air - and it was literally like sticking out hands in a tumble dryer.

So we arrived at the Blue Mountains late in the day and the sun was beginning to set. We stopped at a viewpoint and walked quickly down the track. It was still hot, but starting to cool off a bit by now. When we got there, I still can't believe what I saw - the vastness of the Blue Mountains is breathtaking, your mind struggles to comprehend the vastness of the beauty, the space and silence in front of you - it's an incredible feeling and what I can only describe as freedom. I felt truly free and carefree - like my true self. I was me, free of any stress, worries, pressures and noise.

Turning to walk back up the path towards the car, I saw small dancing dots in the air in front of me in the light of the sunset - what were these? I asked myself and turned to Neil, 'What are they?' I asked, wondering if they were indeed tiny little alien spaceships.

'They're fireflies.' He said, matter of fact.

I'll never forget that day, and I do visit often in my mind, of course. When I need some inner peace and calm, I go and visit, I breath in the air and I imagine looking out again, touching the warm air and watching the fireflies dance in the twilight.

* * *

Of course, as well having these as amazing experiences, travelling also taught me how to pack well for a flight - a really valuable lesson! I've become quite an efficient flyer and packer - skills they certainly don't teach you in college. So below are some of my flight essentials...

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Fly away fashion...

L - R (top to bottom)

1 -  Leggings  - by ASOS - comfy and warm. Jeans dig in too much after 11 hours.

2 -  Comfy shoes -  by ASOS - comfy but cool, flat, and easy to run in - if you miss your departure gate! There's lots of walking and running to be had in airports.

3 -  Wrap around cardigan and layers  - by Boohoo - Planes are cold, so you'll need layers and cardigans to layer on when they bump up the air con, but take off when you land.

4 -  Sunglasses - by Whistles - doubles as a hairband

5 -  A comfy cross your shoulder bag - by Whistles - safety first when travelling, across your body with zips is much safer.

6 -  A comfy essential tee (or 3!) - by ASOS - I wear one and pack on in my hand luggage to change into when I land because 11 hours in the same t-shirt is a sweaty situation!

7 -  A well sized hold-all or backpack - by ASOS - a one sized wonder.

8 -  An oversized scarf - by ASOS -  doubles as a sarong, towel etc. for when you need to pack light.

9 -  Avene water spray -  - Great for dehydrated skin in cabin air con. To take make up off.  To cool off.  To clean things with. you name it, a water spray is awesome for it.

10 - Lucas Pawpaw - Hydrates lips and skin in an instant, no thanks to cabin air con.

11 - Bath and shower minis - by Cowshed - travel sized as you won't get through security without your bottles in a size under 100ml. Think petite!

Also worth mentioning:  Socks; Wet Wipes; Hand Gel; Headphones; Tissues; Second pair of leggings; toothbrush and toothpaste (mini); ear plugs.

See you soon for Part 2.


Monday, 9 March 2015

Packaging design inspiration

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Images and brand credits :: Paul and Joe Make up /  Cheeky  /  Cowshed bath and beauty products

I love packaging, don't you?

And I'll admit I've often bought an item, simply because of its beautiful design.

I'm such a sucker.

 photo foodpackaging101_zpsxw8kryzy.jpg
Images and brand credits :: The Primal Kitchen  /  Harvey Nichols Orange Blossom Water / Phin and Phebes Ice Cream

There are many things to consider when designing packaging for a product, from the marketing mix and customer dynamics, to evaluating the competition, setting key objectives and obviously setting a budget  (there's also the size of the product, the manufacturing process and the material the design will be printed onto to consider - all equally important), but here are a few more points I always find are key to focus on when designing packaging.

- For beauty and/or food, it has to have the SHELF FACTOR:  Would it look good on a shelf?  Would it look good/feel nice in your hand? When it's lined up against other brands, does it stand out as being a bit more special? A bit more, 'something'?  Would classy Instagrammers like to style it in their photographs?

- For food packaging, here's something else I think about - We all like to eat with our eyes, so;
Does it MAKE YOUR MOUTH WATER? Does it make you want to rip open the package and eat or drink it? And, ultimately, would it look good on the kitchen shelf/worktop?

- Branding design is very much an emotional response - the VOICE, the PERSONALITY, the TASTE, the SMELL, the TOUCH and TEXTURE of a product or brand. And this must be consistent throughout all marketing delivery too. Even through to the social media responses, the 'personality' of the brand must be consistently used.  For example; if it's a fun product, with fun packaging, make the social media responses be a bit quirky too.

My job as a designer is to make the brand shine through no matter what the budget is - to make sure all the design brief points are bought together creatively.

It's exciting, and I always love those first sketches and doodles that eventually become something real.

If you too like packaging design, here are 12 Packaging Design Resources for more branding inspiration!

Friday, 27 February 2015

Studio songs

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Tidy desks, that aren't mine either, but those lamps, those lamps are goooood. Image Sources here and here


Was that ANOTHER week that just went by?

Like, seriously, that's crazy. I can't quite accept that it's going to be March next week already.

That means that Summertime's on its way, and that makes me very happy.

 photo magic_letyourhairdown_zps6ortdhpy.jpg

So I tidied my desk, I spent a nice few days away in Bath (relaxing!) ate some lovely pasture fed meat from a local farm, ticked 3 jobs off the to do list, met some lovely new clients, and decided that I can get away with my roots for another week.

What did you get up to?

So with Summer on my mind, I'm was dreaming of lazy days listening to music on the beach, slapping on some Factor 25 and I came across this great portable speaker kit for the beach. It reminds me of my youth, in the 80's (yes I'm an 80's child) pop colours and plastic. I am in love.

Sunnylife 'Beach Sounds' Portable Water Resistant Speaker &amp; Radio

And what to play on it? That's easy, the new album by Magic, is being played on repeat in the studio this week and it's making my steam through my emails.

Hope you all have a lovely, restful weekend. I'm off for brunch, one of my favourite ways to spend a lazy weekend morning.

Now, baby, let your hair down. The song I like by Magic is below, press play and enjoy!