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A Crafty ChaiHello!

Thanks so much for taking the time to stop by and take a look at A Crafty Chai. This blog is pretty much my little corner of the world! It covers things I’m passionate about: crafting, eating, drinking, exploring, creating and most of all, my beautiful little pooch, Poppy.

I don’t accept guest bloggers or written content, but am more than happy to write about other things, like something you’ve sent me for example. Maybe you’ve got a product that Poppy will love and want her to share her views with the world. We’d be more than happy to be involved! A few ground rules though… Please don’t ask me to hide a sponsored post from my readers because I’m just not going to do it. I can’t lie for toffee, either in person or online! For more information on how I run things here, take a look at my disclosure policy. I’m more than happy to collaborate on blogs, writing, social media, events and reviews.

Here are a selection of different brands I’ve worked with, all of whom suit the tone and style of A Crafty Chai.

Cath Kidston logojohn lewis logobathstore logo





Cricut Logolindt logoLiberty-logo





jamies italian      Roberson Wine      Viking

If you think that my blog and your product are made for each other, like Gin and Tonic, then please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Oh, Christmas Tree

It’s finally beginning to look festive at Crafty Chai towers. As our house is snug & compact, we have to get a small tree. For the last few years we’ve bought our tree from Appleton Christmas Barn, which is as awesome as it sounds! It really helps to get me in the Christmas spirit because as soon as you arrive, Christmas is all around you & can’t help but love it!

Festive RibbonAs soon as you enter, you hit with warmth from the wood burning stove by the entrance. Sadly, it wasn’t needed much when we bought our tree last week, but it has been essential in years gone by. They have absolutely everything you could possibly need to get your house ready for Christmas. I love the range of ribbons and stamps that they have, as it’s the little touches that help make Christmas extra special.

Christmas stampsI couldn’t resist buying a holly stamp this time, which has adorned plenty of envelopes, cards & gifts. As we only tend to go when we’re buying our tree, some of the products had already sold out. So we missed out on getting some new festive candles, but they always have plenty of games that are perfect for when the family comes round.

Christmas BaublesOur Christmas tree never really has a theme, as I made the mistake of having a silver & lilac theme one year and it was just horrid. Plus, our decorations are an amalgamation of both mine & my OH’s decorations from when we were single, with a few new ones that we’ve bought since we’ve been together. I prefer a full and colourful tree, with as much clashing of colours & styles as possible!

Appleton Reindeer Sleepy reindeerFor the second year running there were reindeer at Appleton Christmas Barn. It’s so great to see them up close. They were quite sleepy after a busy day of being festive and I was quite impressed with my iPhone photography skills and catching this one mid yawn! Cute or what?! We weren’t sure how Poppy was going to react to the tree, as she gets obsessed with things that move when she pokes them with her nose that ends in her barking at it, poking it really hard & running away. So when we got the tree home, we just put it up and left it for a few days before decorating it. Poppy couldn’t be less bothered with it if she tried! Once again, I worried over nothing. Will I never learn?!

Icelandic SantaWe decided to put our Icelandic Santa in pride of place on top of the tree this year, after Poppy gave his beard a little chew. I love this little guy! Our tree is shorter than ones we’ve bought in previous years, but it’s much bushier, which led to bauble issues! If I spaced them out, it looked bare, but some of the bigger ones kept touching. In the end, I just put on as many as I could get away with.

Cath Kidston SantaObviously my little Cath Kidston Santa decoration took pride of place. I’m still really impressed with those neat little stitches! Does anyone else find that the sap from the tree really makes their hands itch? I always have to stop and wash them so I don’t keep scratching them.

Christmas TreeIt was so sunny today that I really struggled to get a decent picture of the tree, so I’ll add one to Instagram over the weekend. We decided not to use any breakable baubles because of Poppy so we’ve mainly got wooden ones, which are my favourite to be honest. The only problem with a small tree is that you can only use so much tinsel. I am such a sucker for tinsel! Love that stuff!

Be MerryMy OH bought this banner last year and it’s one of my favourite decorations. I love the colour of the print and think it’s such a good way to reuse an old book. Plus, it uses the cute little pegs. I love them! I’ve seen quite a few peg-related tutorials recently so might have attack them with some glitter glue and washi tape!

Almost all the presents are wrapped, almost all the cards are written and posted and we’ll be buying the most important thing tomorrow – the alcohol! Can never have enough in my book! One of the things I love about Christmas is that it’s universally acceptable to drink prosecco with breakfast! Bon apetit!

#BEDN ~ All I want for Christmas

Blimey! Hasn’t November gone quickly?! I am so not ready for Christmas, though I have bought some Christmas cards so I’m getting there. I have also been thinking about what I want for Christmas, which is the most important thing, obviously!

Christmas Wish list

1. Felt MacBook Satchel via Etsy £36.99 // 2. Camden Ditsy Dress via Cath Kidston £55 // 3. Name Necklace via Finest Imaginary £17.50 // 4. Colour block hat via Cath Kidston £25 // 5. Dachshund Umbrella via Dogs Trust £19.99 // 6. Maddaddam by Margaret Atwood //

Some of these are on my actual list but I’ve only discovered some recently and are on my ‘if no one gets me these, I’ll have to treat myself’ wish list!

I’ve struggled to find a bag suitable for my latptop, that fits other stuff, that doesn’t look like every other bag out there. I have high hopes for this little felt beauty! I don’t wear enough dresses. I live in jeans, but I need to remember that other clothes are an option and love this dress by Cath Kidston. Add on a lovely little cardi & you’ll be well away. I also love the Colour Block range that they do, including the hat & the mittens. I have a real love of woolly hats and mittens – I’d love to add these to my collection! Growing up, I really struggled to get anything with my name on because it has an unusual spelling. Now I’m older, I’m used to people spelling it wrong (even when I spell it out to them!) but this lovely necklace from Finest Imaginary would solve all those problems! (Am going to hint a lot to my OH to see if he gets me this!) We’re having a similar issue with Poppy. As she’s a strange mix of breeds, it’s highly unlikely we’ll be able to get any dog stuff with her on it, but this lovely Dachshund umbrella is pretty close. I love it! I’m a huge fan of Margaret Atwood and am looking forward to her latest novel being released in paperback. I don’t buy books very often, I’m happy to go to the library, but I have the other two books in this series and so want to add the latest instalment to my collection.

What are you hoping to open on Christmas Day? Will you be restrained and wait until after lunch or will you be opening them in your jammies while eating lots of delicious chocolate?!

#BEDN ~ It’s only fashion baby

What I know about fashion could be written on a postage stamp. That’s not true actually. I’m aware of what’s fashionable, but most if it is irrelevant to me. I dress for warmth & comfort. I try to look decent, but being cosy is way more important. That being said, with the cold weather, it’s been time to get some new bits & bobs for being outside. These are some of the things I have recently bought or want to keep me warm when walking Poppy this winter. Brrrrr!

winter wishlist1. Grey hand knitted bobble hat by People £25 // 2. Moleskin Duffle coat by Boden £103 // 3. Mini Polka Dot tights by White Stuff £15 // 4. Knee High Lace Socks by Toft £24 // 5. Multi Stripe Welly by Joules £39.95

I do have a few of these and have been waiting for it to get cold enough to wear them! I bought the coat a while ago, though it’s half a Christmas present. Most of my clothes are blue so I went for the orange one for a change and because it’s bright and noticeable. That’s also why I like the Joules wellies. They nice & bright, which is what you need when you’re walking the dog in the rain! I love the bobble hat, especially the bright pom pom! It looks so cosy & I have a real thing for hats in the winter, a slight addiction if you will. I’ve found that I’m walking through socks at an alarming rate and love these old school ones from Toft. I also like the range of tights of White Stuff. They’re just a bit more exciting than tights have been since I was a kid!

dog winter wishlist

1. Spot Dog Collar by Cath Kidston £8 // 2. Spot Dog Lead by Cath Kidston £12 // 3. Houndstooth Dog Jumper at White Stuff £34 // 4. Night Dawg Light Up Collar at Muddy Paws £17.99

I am not the only one who needs a few additions to their wardrobe this winter! I’ve noticed that when walking Poppy anytime after 4.30pm, she’s completely camouflaged by the darkness so we need to get her a light collar that we can just slip on easily before evening walks. We’re also going to get her the jumper, as she doesn’t have much fur on her chest at all but she doesn’t always need her thick coat. I am in love with the range by Redhound for Dogs. As Poppy is an unusual shape, these are the closest ones I’ve seen that should fit her perfectly! When we adopted Poppy, we had no idea about collars & leads so just got a dark, boring one. Most people think she’s a boy, so we were delighted to receive the gorgeous red Spot dog collar & lead from Cath Kidston. They suit Poppy down to the ground & help her look a bit more girly! That is until she’s hunting the squirrels…!