A new year is the chance to start afresh; to better yourself and try something new. It doens’t have to be anything huge or of great significance. Small changes can be just as satisfying.
Every year we make a promise to read more. To make some time to sit quietly and read. Too often life gets in the way and we always feel like we should be doing something or moving on to the next thing.
You feel that way too?
We might have just the thing for you… Our book club subscriptions. A monthly subscription where a literary parcel of happy post is delivered straight to your door, reminding you to take some well deserved time out!
Prefer the new book smell? This one’s for you! A classic novel and a packet of four luxury tea pyramids to enjoy it with. All of the books feature beautiful dust jackets, designed exclusively by us. From £16 each month.
As you may already know, this year we’re embracing the tradition of Jólabókaflóð which involves spending Christmas Eve curled up reading a new book whilst eating chocolate. Sounds like bliss right? You can read more about it right here.
To encourage more people to embrace the tradition, we teamed up with some lovely bookstagrammers and one of our favourite small businesses, The Slabb. The Slabb is a unique brand of alcohol and non-alcohol infused chocolate, born out of a love of interesting food combinations and flavours. They look great and taste even better – make sure to check out their range!
We sent each bookstagrammer a delicious bar of chocolate and one of our gold foil personalised ‘Twas The Night Before Christmas’ books. They’re perfect for spending time with loved ones on Christmas Eve.
Here are the beautiful photographs they’ve shared with us. Make sure you go and follow each of them over on Instagram, they produce and create some lovely content.
If you love books as much as we do, then you need to know about the Icelandic tradition of Jólabókaflóð. Throw in the magic of Christmas alongside it and it’s every book lover’s dream.
The term Jólabókaflóð means ‘Yule Book Flood’. Iceland place huge importance on reading and storytelling, with one in ten of the 330,000 population publishing at least one book in their lifetime. Icelanders read more books per capita than any other people in the world. “We are a nation of storytellers. When it was dark and cold, we had nothing else to do” said Icelandic novelist Solvi Bjorn Siggurdson. (Like we needed another reason to visit!)
Every Christmas Eve, Icelanders exchange and gift books to one another, and then spend the remainder of the evening reading them. Sounds pretty blissful doesn’t it? Warm, cosy, eating chocolate, surrounded by your favourite people, and delving into a good book.
In the last year or so, this quiet, simple tradition has garnered more and more international attention. We’re hoping it catches on; it’s a tradition we’ll happily get behind. We’ve created an entire collection on our website for those of you who are hoping to embrace the tradition this year. It includes our personalised Christmas Eve book. You can see the range right here.
We took a little trip down to London recently, and popped into the most magical print shop there is: The House of MinaLima.
For those who don’t already know, MinaLima is the creative team behind every graphic element in the Warner Bros. Wizarding World, everything from Harry’s Hogwarts acceptance letters, to the Black Family Tree Tapestry. The House of MinaLima is the home of these magical props.
Miraphora Mina and Eduardo Lima (best wizarding names ever, right?) met through a mutual friend and began working together in 2002, when Lima moved to England from Brazil. Mina had already worked on the first Harry Potter film by this point, and Lima joined her for Prisoner of Azkaban.
So imagine walking through Soho, turning onto Greek Street, and seeing the prettiest pink brick building adorned with strings of lights and the shop windows filled to the brim of wizarding wonders. As you step inside you are welcomed into the ground floor shop, home of memorabilia designed by MinaLima, including badges and card holders, wand permits, journals and signed copies of books and prints.
In addition to their work for the Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts films, The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley at Universal Orlando Resort, and other films such as Sweeney Todd, The Golden Compass and The Imitation Game, they have developed their own range of illustrated classic fairy tale books by Harper Collins, which is exhibited on the first floor. We climb the stairs and exit into the colourful fairy tale world filled with paper cuts and gold accented illustrations depicting Peter Pan, The Little Mermaid and The Jungle Book. You can pick up a signed copy of these, we indulged in a copy of The Jungle Book and cannot express how happy the interactive fold out and moving parts make us. It is just gorgeous!
Moving on up to the second floor and we are in full on wizarding nerd out mode. There’s Mrs Weasley’s howler, the Hogwarts Express ticket, issues of the Daily Prophet and the Quibbler, Undesirable posters and Ministry of Magic propaganda. MinaLima designed every page in the newspapers, magazines and books; using antique books for inspiration in binding and typeface – it was so exciting to see these props in person, but we challenge anyone to decipher the font used in the newspaper articles!
There’s also a little shrine to Weasley Wizard Wheezes and a workshop area that you can make your own Interdepartmental memos and other bits and bobs.
As you climb each staircase you notice an increase of Daily Prophet pages reporting the Triwizard Tournament and Undesirable posters featuring Bellatrix, and by the time you reach the top floor, there isn’t a blank bit of wall. The landing is made even more magical by ‘floating’ candlelight, welcoming you into the first room with even more Harry Potter props and artwork. There’s a fireplace mock up scene with hundreds of Hogwarts acceptance letters spilling out of it. There’s also cabinets of the classic books like Hogwarts: A History, Magical Hieroglyphs & Logograms, The Tales of Beedle the Bard and our favourite: The Half Blood Prince’s copy of Advanced Potion Making, which was exhibited open on the recipe for the Draught of Living Death, you know, the one that helps Harry win the bottle of Felix Felicis.
Entering the final room at The House of MinaLima, there are lavish Art Deco posters from MACUSA and No-Maj propaganda as well as a display case with props from Fantastic Beast and Where To Find Them.
The House of MinaLima really is a wonderful, ever changing place that we would happily revisit time and time again, and spend all of our money at.
Christmas is right around the corner whether we’re ready for it or not! If you’re after a unique and thoughtful gift for the book lover in your life then look no further, we’ve got you covered! Our main website is full of literary gifts that are sure to make any bookworm smile.
A wonderful book subscription gift that will delight any book lover. A special literary package sent from the UK arriving on the doorstep every month: a surprise vintage paperback book, some lovely stationery and delicious tea. Perfect!
An empowering quote print in a bright and modern design. We love how this poster inspires determination and ambition. The bold design is available with red text over a pink background or rose gold over a navy background.
Travel journal featuring this wonderful literary quote from Jane Austen’s ‘Northanger Abbey’. This lovely writing journal would make a great gift for any young lady you may know who is heading off a new adventure or trip of a life time. A great present to wish them a good trip.
A wonderful literary gift for your favourite book lover, this brilliant quote is from Louisa May Alcott’s ‘Little Women’.“She is too fond of books, and it has turned her brain.” This typographical print uses a framed vintage book page and our exclusive, hand drawn font.
A beautiful personalised book gift for the festive period, and a particularly wonderful gift for Christmas Eve. This lovely book can be enjoyed as a family for years to come. Christmas Eve is all about traditions; cosying up by the fire with a hot mug of cocoa, and reading a good book.
These two lovely friendship bracelets make a wonderful gift for a friend going through a challenging time. Use these charm bracelets to let them know you’re there for them and always will be. The two bracelets come in navy and grey and feature a lovely star charm
Your day doesn’t start until you’ve had coffee… That first mug in the morning means you can face whatever day ahead throws at you.
2. Once you smell the coffee, you need the coffee…You could be busily working away but one waft of fresh coffee means you drop everything and head to the nearest kettle.
3. Whoever heard of too much coffee… 3 a day, 5 a day, espresso, latte or americano. There’s always a reason for more coffee, right?
4. Not all superheroes wear capes… Coffee makes you feel better. Whatever mood you’re in, whatever problem you’re dealing with, some time out to sit down and relax with a good cup of coffee fixes everything.
5. Decaf is not proper coffee… There’s a time and a place for decaf, maybe you don’t want a caffeine fix right before bed, but it will never compare to the real thing.
6. No coffee shop is too expensive… Costa, Starbucks, Cafe Nero or you little local, when you need that coffee fix you need it now.
7. Books and coffee are the perfect combination… There is nothing that can beat that quiet time when you sit on the sofa, usually covered with a throw, with your favourite book and a huge mug of coffee. Need a coffee and book fix? We’ve got you covered.
8. It always tastes better out of your favourite mug…We all have one in the cupboard, that special mug that we always grab when we want to chill with a coffee. Not got one, we’ve got a few perfect options for book lovers.
9. Coffee counts as breakfast… Running late or lying in, a mug of coffee or two is always a good way to start your day.