29 August 2014

End of Month Review - A quick look back at August

I took some time off in August to spend with wonderful friends.  After two weeks out of the office it take a while to get back into your stride, even so... it's been a busy month, here's what we have been up to...

1// Nicola wrote 10 things you might not know about The Ruby Orchard...We do gift vouchers,  we can deliver, we are on instagram and we wholesale our rustic frames to other shops!

2// Our August facebook album of new products got everyone excited! You ain't seen nothing yet... we have some AMAZING new stock ordered, in production and on the way!

3// Sandi described her perfect day out and about in the midlands.  Sounds like my kinda day too!

4// While I was away at the coast I popped into see Terry making Foreva candles and headed for my first visit at The Litchi Orchard Market.

5// We let you in on who we love to follow and keep up to date with online.  It was so hard to choose our favorites.

6// Our team of furniture makers is growing. We have had some great new pieces refurbed and are now in store.  Preserving the past and creating beautiful pieces from other peoples rubbish is so exciting.

7// I shopped up a storm in J'burg buying new stock for the up and coming festive season.  As always we will post pics on our facebook page as soon as the stock starts arriving!

8// City Girl Searching featured me on her blog in her 'Life After the Dress' series... watch this space... Roxy and I have some pretty plans!

9//  Sandi is a Pinterest addict...Well she loves it!!  Our boards of style inspiration are being updated daily and we have some great plans for using Pinterest to show you how to use our products in your homes.

Cannot believe it is September already... I am trying so hard not to mention the 'C' word!!!

27 August 2014

Pinterest Inspiration

Inspiration comes in many forms.  It can be found in a colour, a shape, a shadow.   Inspiration can be found in the pages of a book, a photograph in a magazine or the words of a song.

One of my sources of inspiration (and very guilty pleasure) is Pinterest.  I love it.  I love it so.  I admit to having used up ridiculous amounts of data simply by trawling through the millions of pins that appear daily in my feed. 

I have used it for delicious recipes (ok mainly for the cupcake recipes), for essential oil tips, for the amazing photography tutorials.  I have pinned hundreds of decor ideas for my 'one day' house.  I have a fantastically inspirational sewing and DIY board that I use often , have a dream holiday board, a health and fitness board and many, many others.

Here at the Ruby Orchard we regularly check in with Pinterest for a healthy dose of ideas and inspiration for the shop. We have our own boards dedicated to all sorts of lovely things, like Baking, Bags and Accessories, Kitchenware, Ceramics and many more - filled with lots of the beautiful products that we sell.   We also have 'Boards of Inspiration' - filled with all sorts of pins relating to kitchens, what to create with washi tape, ceramics, windows and doors, upcycling - things that we have found beautiful and interesting and inspiring ourselves.

So why don't you follow The Ruby Orchard on Pinterest, take a peek at our boards and be inspired yourselves!

The Ruby Orchard Pinterest

The Ruby Orchard Pinterest

25 August 2014

Preserving the past

We have been spending more and more time at building demolition sites reclaiming the timber that is fallen, broken, cast aside and left for dead.

As I walk through the piles of ceiling boards, beams and roof trusses all I can imagine is a bench for my veranda, a stunning consol for a hallway or a server that would stand as a statement in any home. The wood shows a lifetime of character and aged beauty, so authentic it has to be shared and brought back to life.

At The Ruby Orchard we now have some great wood! It has characteristics that tell a story of the blood, sweat, and tears of those who built the structures. Every reclaimed workbench we find has the scars of hard work and we are doing things a little bit differently in an attempt to stay with the present and preserve the past.

Our furniture range is growing in popularity and our skills and eye for detail are improving with every piece we make and restore, but they don’t hang around for long before they get snapped up.

Here is my Spring 2014 Inspiration and the style you are likely to see at The Ruby Orchard during the next few months.

22 August 2014

From the workshop...

Today this beauty was completed and added to ever growing range of furniture. Our guys, Ray and Zach have been working on this original rustic cupboard for last two weeks and we are so pleased with the results... now it's just time to fill up the wine rack and enjoy the weekend! 

18 August 2014

We Love a market!

The Litchi Orchard
I love a market! I love the ambling atmosphere, the smell of coffee and fresh bread, the tables brimming with delicious treats and homemade nik naks.

During a short break away to the North coast we visited The Litchi Orchard market.  The market is held on the second Saturday of each month from 9am - 2pm.  We had the loveliest morning - scrummy farm fresh breakfast, delightful smoothies and a browse.  We spent ages selecting a box full of delicious Swiss pastries for afternoon tea.  Our little ones played, held baby bunnies and sampled the pancakes. Definitely worth a visit!

Take a look...

15 August 2014

Behind the scenes at Foreva Candles

During a short break away to the North Coast I popped off to collect a candle order from Terry at Foreva Candles. His house smelt AMAZING!  The upstairs mezzanine floor is where it all happens! Fragrance pots, essential oils, wax burners and brimming moulds filled the room.  It was so lovely to see Terry in action,  I watched Terry turning out and hand finishing chocolate orange candles - good enough to eat! 

The new fragrance Lime and Clary Sage is my absolute favorite for spring, lots in stock but selling fast!

I caught up with Terry the next day at The Litchi Orchard market... that's another story... blog post to follow! 

13 August 2014

Why we love following...

Here at The Ruby Orchard we love a little bit of Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest. It's the best place to learn more about what's hip and happening and find inspiration. Today we thought we'd share 5 of our favourite social media accounts that we follow...

On Instagram - The Every Girl 
The Every Girl Instagram account is the best account for photo styling inspiration, their clean, crisp and colourful photos are picture heaven. We'd love to be able to take our product styling photos like the Every Girl. 

On Bloglovin' - Indieberries
Called us biased but we just love love Indieberries for her quirky fun business blog posts, occasional rants and cute little doodles. We are so excited to stock Che's products and have her here in person for our second workshop

Instagram - Skinny La Minx
Possibly my most favourite Instagram account, I love seeing where Heather gets her inspiration  and I just love the random sparks of inspiration and doodles that seem to flow when out grabbing a cuppa. 

Facebook - Nadia van der Mescht
A firm favourite and a great source of creative business knowledge!

Pinterest - Ann-Marie Espinoza
Ann-Marie's Pinterest account is carefully curated and is my ultimate go to for inspiration. It's a house full of gorgeous pictures from crafty projects to bedroom styling. 

06 August 2014

Our perfect day in the Midlands

Ahh ... the Midlands.  The little green belt of KZN.  One of the best things about living in the Midlands, is that there is SO much to do and see.  There really is.  We are spoilt for choice with amazing restaurants, coffee shops, gift shops, lodges, Spa's, out door activities - the list is endless and it keeps on growing.  From Spring through Winter, there is always something to do!  How lucky are we to have that on our doorstep.

This is a rough guide to my idea of a  perfect day in the Midlands.

To have a Breakfast feast

I love a good market, and the Karkloof Farmers market is the perfect place to visit for breakfast on a Saturday..  Fresh fruit juice, coffee, egg and bacon brekkies, tarts, pies, sweet treats, fresh treats - it's a foodie heaven and a lovely start to a morning with lots of little stalls to browse through while you fill up.

To be outdoors.

I once climbed the famous Dargle mountain - iNhlozane.  I did.  It was tough and there were a few moments where I questioned my sanity as well as my 'planning' (there was none) but once I got to the top - incredible.  The view was stunning and so worth the effort and the, at times, hard going.  On a clear day in the Midlands, you really can see forever.

To relax in good company

My secret perfect meal is pizza with an ice cold beer.  It's true.  I love it and I have found the most amazing place right here in the Midlands that serves both!.  Il Postino, out on the Dargle road, serves up the most delicious pizzas with fabulous topping combinations.  I love the atmosphere there, it's local, lekker and a great place to meet old friends and make new ones.

On the bucket list...
For the Midlands, is to visit Rockwood Forest Lodge in the Karkloof  Nature reserve.  It looks beautiful and I think could be the perfect place to relax and as they say - choose to be as active as you wish!   

04 August 2014

10 things you might not know about The Ruby Orchard

1// We do gift vouchers
Sometimes choosing a present for a fussy sister, bratty brother or friend whose 'got it all' can be a little tricky that's why we sell gift vouchers. You choose the value, we put it in a pretty envelope and your gift is done. Nothing says love more than a gift voucher from your favourite shop!

2// We cut mirrors to size
Well technically we don't but Mirror & Glass do. You choose the size and thickness of the mirror and our glass cutter will do the cutting.

3// We do Rustic Picture Framing
Our shed is piled high with reclaimed timber waiting to pretty up your picture. Come in and we'll take you down to the shed to pick out the perfect timber frame for you. All our frames are unique and we cannot guarantee they will look exactly like any in the shop but we can guarantee they will look divine! 

4// We do trestle legs and glass tops
We did this for an interior designer in Pietermaritzburg and she absolutely loved it. Chunky wooden trestle legs and a thick glass top - the perfect for any stylish office.

5// We can deliver
Love The Ruby Orchard but don't live nearby? Choose your items, send us an email and we will figure out a way to get your must have items to you!

6// We hold Workshops & Events
We've learnt so much since The Ruby Orchard first started and have decided to share our knowledge with the creative community. Our 2nd Creative 'In Store' Workshop will be held on the 19th of October, be sure to sign up to our newsletter to be the first to know about 2 other exciting events we will be having at the end of the year. 

7// We make Pin boards & Chalkboards!
We've got several chalkboards in store, but if you need something a little bigger and in a different frame then please ask we'd be happy to make it especially for you. We can also do pin boards in our rustic timber.

8// We design, print and frame personalised Wedding, Baby & Quote prints.
Looking for a gift that's one of a kind? These prints are tailored especially for that someone special.

9// We are on Instagram
Snap shots of the shop, products and happenings at The Ruby Orchard can be found on Instagram.

10// We wholesale our rustic frames
All our unique frames are made in house so if you have a shop and would like to stock them then please get in touch therubyorchard@gmail.com

01 August 2014

July - the month in review

1// We stocked more Skinny La Minx and were honoured to feature the extremely talented Heather on our 'Feature on Creative' Series.

2// We introduced you to our latest Ruby Orchard team member - Sandi Christie

3// Tick Tock - new beautiful Thomas Kent clocks were delivered and haven't lasted long! We've only got a few left.

4// Sandi & Nicola had fun modelling our latest scarf collection for our 'How to tie a Scarf' series.

5// Our 2nd Creative 'In Store' Workshop was launched and we were delighted to get a Yes from Indieberries to be our guest speaker.

6// We introduced you to The Block Shop - Alice May's latest beautiful creations.

7// We told you why we support Handmade.
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