I don't know about you, but I'm really struggling to keep warm, at the moment. I feel chilled to the bone. Sat on my bed wearing pyjamas and two pair of thick socks, I still feel the need to wrap my fingers around a hot cup of coffee and throw on a blanket to stop the shivers. And the lack of sunshine makes it seem even colder than what it really is, doesn't it? I used to dream of Chuck Bass from Gossip Girl but lately he's been replaced by thoughts of a roaring fire and a bowl of warm soup. Is that a sign of ageing or just January taking its toll?
However, two wonderful things happened last week. One to warm my heart and another to warm my toes. My husband, in fairness to him, gives me the odd helping hand with this blog. It could be taking a photo or two, or having his photo or two taken, and he's also infinitely better than me at spelling so makes a good sub-editor. But suggestions for content?! Yeah, not so much. Unless I'm doing him a disservice and you really do want to hear about industrial weighing scales or his year long selection process for his next company car. Interested? Thought not. So when I heard the words, 'I know what you can make next for your blog', I'm not going to lie, I rolled my eyes. But. It was a genius idea!
We love coffee. Not several-cups-a-day-made-from-granules coffee. Proper coffee. Coffee that you stop what you're doing to drink. And enjoy. It's the ritual. From choosing the flavour to dusting a layer of chocolate on top of the frothy milk. It's a simple pleasure.
Paul is our official chocolate duster and it's a job he takes very seriously. And he's also a bit obsessed with the seasonal stencils which they use in coffee shops to create fun patterns on top of your coffee. Yes, really. But they're so hard to come by and also quite expensive for what they are. Paul's genius idea? Let's make our own! So we did. And it was incredibly easy.
All it took was card and lollipop sticks. I used my Cricut Explore One to cut circles the same size as an average coffee cup and then chose different shapes to cut out of the middle of those circles. For each individual stencil, I cut two matching circles and shapes so that I could glue the lollipop stick in-between them. This isn't strictly necessary, more an atheistic thing, really. But it does make the stencil slightly thicker and sturdier. I know not everyone has a Cricut machine and while you'd probably need one for more intricate shapes, you could definitely create simpler versions using just a craft knife. I actually made the star one in the picture below with a craft knife just to test the theory ... I drew around a biscuit cutter and then cut out the shape. It's perfect!
The stencils literally took minutes to make and are so much fun to use. And the possibilities are endless. Think initials for special guests, numbers for birthdays, a bunny for Easter, a question mark for a proposal. They're a really sweet and simple idea.
My heart has been warmed by my clever and thoughtful husband who I often accuse of not listening when I talk about blogging.
Thank you, Paul. You've temporarily redeemed yourself.
The super cool, double walled, glass coffee cup is part of a set of two from Habitat. While I was browsing the website, I also came across a copper dusting shaker in the dining section which is now, unfortunately, out of stock. It was to go with this cafetière and was a thing of beauty. Fingers crossed, they have it again soon.
And my poor toes which were in need of warming? Well, they're now nestled under this grey, cashmere throw. Oh my! It's seriously luxurious. Soft to the touch, easy on the eye, and the perfect antidote to chilled bones. I may never get out of bed again. Well, until the sun makes a return. Probably, June then.
This post was written in collaboration with Habitat. I was so sorry to see the Chester branch close as it was one of my favourite places to shop but the online selection is equally as good. It's definitely worth checking out.