Take the stress out of Christmas shopping by Adeline from Edith Joan
I feel like I live my life by that song from Back To The Future – I am forever playing catch up. Since my youngest has started to (almost) talk, I feel like I’m starting to get a better grip on things. I spend less time trying to work out what he wants, and more time just giving into his needs. It works out well for him.
Between running a business, bringing up children and trying to build a new brand, I find I have less time for all the things I used to love doing – like cooking, enjoying the wine I’m drinking and shopping.
Cooking, I handed over to my husband sometime during my first pregnancy – massive win for me. My tolerance for wine has somewhat wained since I left my twenties behind and got a few responsibilities, so there I am, left with one fun activity, but do I have time for it? No. Window shopping is out, internet shopping is very much in.
Fortunately for me, I am part of an awesome team of skilled makers who have made shopping so much easier for those of us with very little time on our hands. I can buy something for everyone in my family at the click of a button, and with the talented gals and guys available to create custom orders after a quick email chat, it’s not just handmade, it’s completely unique.
Aside from the shopping, I think I’ve nailed Christmas efficiency. In my world, it’s less about the planning, more about knowing where to go for all your needs. Here are my time saving tips:
It’s basically roast dinner, with a lot more condiments. You can peel all your veg the day before and keep them in the pan full of water ready to part boil the following day. No one wants to spend Christmas morning peeling spuds.
Rarely do I get birthday cards sent out on time. Christmas, on the other hand, is different for some reason. Order stamps online from Royal Mail (they currently have MR MEN stamps – who doesn’t love them?!) at the beginning of the month, and stamp all your cards before writing them. Stamps are so bloody expensive now that you will feel forced to write them all. I love the ugly christmas jumper cards from Rachel Emma Studio if you’re looking for some card inspiration.
Department stores are great at making you feel all Christmassy, but in case you hadn’t noticed, it’s the same stuff they always have, but in smaller bottles/boxes/packets put into pretty boxes and sold as a gift. At the risk of giving something that your in laws are going to hide under their bed, I suggest heading to Etsy.com or if you want to really enjoy the festive spirit of shopping, come to the London Local x Etsy Made Local market at Hornsey Town Hall. 80 Etsy traders under one roof, and with 3 weeks to go before Christmas, you may even have time to discuss custom orders with some of the makers and get something completely unique in time for the big day.
My wrapping has changed significantly since having children. I have now passed all responsibility to them – we buy a big roll of brown paper (the type you find in a florist) give the kids all the paints, glitter and felt tip pens, and let them unleash 12 months of artistic licence on all of it. If they’ve been very good, we also let them wrap the presents as a treat. They get given rolls of washi tape (no scissors needed), and they can tear off the decorated paper. Gifts are now received with a “Awwww, did baby V wrap this? How lovely!” which has the added bonus of making us seem like brilliant parents. If you don’t have children of your own, help out a friend by offering to babysit while they go to the pub.
GET SOMEONE ELSE TO DO IT
If you come to see us at the London Local Market, there’ll be a charity wrapping table there, raising money for Action For Kids – so you can buy your gifts and get them wrapped all at the same time. If ever life was made easy for you, this is it. No more sticking your fingers together with sellotape and trying to wrap awkwardly shaped presents AND you’re helping out Action For Kids. Win-Win.
There you go, Christmas made easy. If you’re feeling particularly lazy, I’ve rounded up some of my favourite products from London Local Etsy sellers that you can either order online, or buy direct from them at the Etsy Made Local Market on 3rd & 4th December, 11am-5pm, at Hornsey Town Hall Arts Centre, The Broadway, Crouch End, N8 9JJ, North London.
Adeline is the maker/owner behind Edith Joan handcrafting accessories for people who have fun. You can find her all weekend, probably clutching a mug of coffee (or mulled wine…ahem) at the LoLo market on the 3rd & 4th December. Come by for a natter sometime.