The Pantone Colour of the year 2018 has been announced and it is – drum-roll please – 18-3838, ultraviolet. We’re going to be seeing a lot of purple in the new year. Lily Blanche Purple Amethyst lockets, earrings and rings are bang on trend.
Here is what Pantone has to say about its choice. “Complex and contemplative, Ultra Violet suggests the mysteries of the cosmos, the intrigue of what lies ahead, and the discoveries beyond where we are now. The vast and limitless night sky is symbolic of what is possible and continues to inspire the desire to pursue a world beyond our own.
Enigmatic purples have also long been symbolic of counterculture, unconventionality, and artistic brilliance. Musical icons Prince, David Bowie, and Jimi Hendrix brought shades of Ultra Violet to the forefront of western pop culture as personal expressions of individuality. Nuanced and full of emotion, the depth of PANTONE 18-3838 Ultra Violet symbolizes experimentation and non-conformity, spurring individuals to imagine their unique mark on the world, and push boundaries through creative outlets.
Historically, there has been a mystical or spiritual quality attached to Ultra Violet. The color is often associated with mindfulness practices, which offer a higher ground to those seeking refuge from today’s over-stimulated world. The use of purple-toned lighting in meditation spaces and other gathering places energizes the communities that gather there and inspire connection”. Prepare for a purple patch!
A number of cutomers have asked us if we are participating in Black Friday. This year we have decided we will. Our code is Friday15 and you can use it throughout the Lily Blanche website now. It is valid till midnight Monday November 27. We are doing so mainly because some of our stockists are participating in Black Friday and our over-riding philosophy is that our most loyal customers should always get our best offers.
The code works for everything except Memory Keeper Lockets. I hope it helps a bit with the Christmas shopping. Remember there is free UK delivery on all orders.
Happy shopping and if you need any help, I’m only a phonecall (01786 464251) or an email away.
Christmas falls on a Monday this year which means that there are fewer posting days than usual before Christmas. Below are the last possible posting dates for Christmas delivery but to guarantee your jewellery arrives in plenty time, do please order as early as you can, firstly because we will sell out of some popular items and we’d hate to disappoint you and secondly because although the postal service is heroic, it is human and fallible and very occasionally things will go wrong. Happy shopping!
They say that one good deed deserves another and while I’ve always been a bit suspect of the concept of karma – bad things happen to good people too – I do like the idea of spreading a little bit of love or joy. I believe small acts can, cumulatively, make a big difference.
Recently we’ve started working with the review company Trustpilot. Trustpilot sends out an email on our behalf to every Lily Blanche online customer asking them to review their experience with us. I was quite nervous about this to start with but I’ve been really touched and bouyed up by the lovely messages our customers have left. You can read them here
Reviews are really important to our business and help other customers make decisions but I always feel slightly awkward asking for them. We all lead busy lives and we are all bombarded by companies asking us to reveiw things. So I’ve been thinking about how we can say thank you to those who take the trouble without influencing what they write or think about us. And I think I might have come up with an idea…
If you followed us last year, you will know that our charity of the year last year was Social Bite. This is an amazing organisation established by Josh Littlejohn and Alice Thompson which helps to feed – and more importantly – employ some of the most marginalised people in society – those who are homeless.
I have been privileged to spend time with Josh and have got to know a little bit of the work he and Alice are doing and it is incredibly impressive. Not only does Social Bite allow customers in their cafes to “pay forward” a coffee or a sandwich for a homeless person, it employs 20% of its staff from the homeless community. This often means giving people who have been written off not just a second chance but a third or fourth chance.
Social Bite’s latest venture is to build a village in Granton, Edinburgh to house people who have lost their homes. We want to keep supporting this cause so we’ve decided to give 10p to Social Bite for every Trustpilot Review we receive, irrespective of the rating. It’s our way of paying forward the kindness of our reviewers.
We will, of course, keep supporting Social Bite in other ways too. This is a bit of an experiment and I hope our customers approve. It fits with the ethos of what we are trying to do here at Lily Blanche, which is to do business in a caring and responsible way. Leave a comment below or on our Facebook page and let us know what you think.
“No matter who my dad met, he always seemed to touch people and leave that special something”
When Lily Blanche customer Helen Thompson got in touch last month to tell us she had chosen the Gold Feather Locket for her mum Beryl and wanted to give it to her on her birthday on September 9th in memory of her father David who passed away last year, we were really touched by her thoughtfulness.
Helen sent us the photographs she wanted to use in the locket. When we saw the photo of David in his hat, we were smitten and wanted to know more about the charmer in the panama.
Helen told us that David and Beryl had met at a mutual friend’s wedding and Beryl offered to buy David a drink. It was the start of a great romance. They were engaged and married within the year. That was 40 years ago last September. Sadly David lost his battle with cancer just before their ruby wedding anniversary and so Helen’s parents didn’t get to celebrate their special day together.
“I took mum away to a place we went as kids and we celebrated it together with dad in spirit,” Helen says. “My dad had done lots of jobs over the years but he ended his career at Greater Manchester Fire Brigade as a hydrant mechanic”.
David grew up in Radcliffe and was proud of his broad Lancashire accent. He lived his whole life there till 2014 when he moved with Beryl to live next door to Helen in a little village called Hawkshaw where he’d always wanted to live. This is where he spent his last couple of years being cared for by Helen and enjoying his granddaughter.
“He was so happy there,” Helen recalls. “The photo of mum and dad was taken at a fish and chip shop in Whitby nearly a year to the day before he died. He loved it there. It was his favourite place and held so many childhood memories of holidays for him.
“And the picture of my dad in the hat just epitomises how he was always – happy and laughing and the most loving person you could meet. No matter who my dad met, he always seemed to touch people and leave that special something. I’m heartbroken he’s gone I miss him every day he was my best friend as well as my dad. But I believe we will all be together again one day so I look at it as not saying goodbye to him just see you later”.
It was an absolute privilege and joy to work on the photographs for Beryl’s locket. We reshaped and resized them digitally using canva.com and then printed them out on high quality photographic paper. Helen approved them by email before we sent them off to her, along with some spares. She chose two and popped them into the locket.
This week, Helen emailed to tell us Beryl had received the locket. “Well it was my mum’s birthday on Saturday and she absolutely loved the locket. She had a little cry as did I and said she will have dad with her everywhere she goes now. So thank you so much for everything you have done for us”.
The privilege was all ours. You can read Helen’s review of the Rose Gold Feather Locket on our Facebook review section. We love hearing the stories behind the photos in the lockets so please do share them. If you need help with resizing or printing images please email email@example.com. You can see the Lily Blanche Feather collection here
Lily Blanche – lockets for those who love and are loved. #everdaylovestories
It’s back to school for us this week – a ritual which has been performed annually in this household for twenty years, since my eldest started at nursery as a tiny tot. But this year, it is different. With just one of my three children still at school, this is the last autumn we will be looking out uniform, buying new stationery and hunting for lost kit of a morning before rushing for the school bus. The baby has started sixth form. How did that happen?
If you have young children, it is almost impossible to imagine such an ingrained part of your life coming to an end but this year, for us, everything will be poignant – the last Christmas dance, the last parents’ night, the last school report. I still have all the projects from primary one -all wobbly handwriting and wonky drawings – in a cupboard, all the school photographs, all the reports…
These things are about to become part of our family history, to be dug out at future family gatherings, cooed over and laughed over. Do you remember when…? Threads of a tapestry binding siblings together in shared experience.
We are good at marking special occasions – birthdays, anniversaries, Christmases. But all too often it is the occasions for which there is no ritual or tradition which are the most affecting. How do you mark an empty nest or a fledgling about to spread their wings?
For my dchildren, a tiny reminder of home and childhood is a comforting thing. My eldest daughter is forging a career in Manchester – experiencing the joy of a smart suit, a morning Starbucks, a grown up pay cheque. But it is comforting for both of us to know that she is still wearing the little sterling silver teddy pendant she got all these years ago. It may be tucked away beneath the collar of a business shirt but we both know it is there – a link with home and with the past.
Often it is the little things, a picture in a locket or a shell from a much-loved holiday spot slipped into a blazer pocket that lets them know that you’ve remembered and that while they stand on the brink of a scary and exciting new world, some things endure – home and happiness and family and security and love and laughter.
How do you mark these precious moments in your family? We’d love to know.
It has been a stressful couple of days in the Lily Blanche studio as I try to fit in everything that needs to be done before I go on holiday to ensure the staff manning the studio while I am away are properly supported. There has been that familiar sense of rising panic and inevitably anything that can go wrong has gone wrong. I’ve felt like a rubbish boss, mother, wife… Even the dog is looking at me askance.
But the day has been bookended by two lovely messages. I woke this morning to a Facebook message from a customer who first contacted me back in May. She had a special birthday coming up and she liked the look of the Lily Blanche silver Memory Keeper Locket. We exchanged messages and I sent her a look book.
Today she messaged me: “My lovely family got me the memory keeper locket for my birthday yesterday and I love it… the detail is beautiful. I am on a cruise round the Med just now and have had so any compliments on my necklace, so recommending you all round the ship… Thank you again and keep up the good work. Your work is fabulous”.
Tonight, a new customer who ordered the Garnet Vintage Heart Locket earlier in the week posted a charming 5 star review on our Facebook page.
“I’ve been looking for the perfect locket for years now and came across Lily Blanche website… not only I found the most stunning vintage antique looking locket, it was also one of the best customer service I ever had the chance to deal with!! After ordering the item, I sent an inquiry and Gillian responded promptly. The item was also shipped and delivered so quickly. The locket itself looks even more beautiful than I expected! So thank you so much!! I really recommend Lily Blanche for the stunning pieces of jewellery and the excellent customer service. Merci!!”
It’s 11.45pm and I am still in the studio. I have felt anything but fabulous today but these comments from two lovely Lily Blanche ladies have really cheered and sustained me. They’ve reminded me of just how important it is to take a moment to stop and count blessings and of how vital it is to mark the special occasions in life and to spread a little kindness.
So thank you to Julie and Stephanie. Your comments have meant more to me today than you might have realised.