Saturday, 1 December 2012

Final Christmas order dates...

.... for 

International orders have now stopped.

The final date or guaranteed Christmas delivery to UK addresses is 16th December. Not long now!  

It's 1st December today!! That means I can officially play Christmas music now and eat advent chocolate :D

Have a great day


Sunday, 11 November 2012

Getting a different kind of crafty

When I left school I was 100% sure that the only thing I wanted to do was be a photographer, unfortunately I had... shall we say a very unsupportive mother, and I got myself involved with a man who wasn't very nice. Both of them said I couldn't follow my dreams and go to college and do the courses I needed. I was a very different person back then and I listened, and carried on listening for the next 12 years or so. I was 25 before I had got out of that situation and  29 before I decided that I'd stop listening and just do it! Life is too short and all that. I had always been creative and in the meantime set up One Stop Pamper Shop, which I love but I still had this niggling "what if" so I went for it.

This isn't something I share very often over here, if ever actually because I am so damn critical of my photo's and its all I can do not to just delete them as soon as I have taken them. BUT I am trying my best to be more confident and at least trust other peoples judgement when they say they love them, I have been very lucky lately and had some people that like my photo's enough to hire me to photograph their children. But the nerves are still there! They fade with practise though, right? I hope so! 

I'm the world best worrier (perhaps it comes from being told "you can't" for so long) left to my own devices I wouldn't actually get anything done  just spend my days over analysing everything! I'll stop waffling and show you some of my latest pictures, hopefully I'll even press the post this blog button! Let me know what you think of them?

Tuesday, 6 November 2012

November News

It's cold out there! don't even think about going outside, stay home, light candles, have long luxurious baths and eat rich stews and stodgy puddings..... Ok so perhaps I'm just having a little day dream there. Sounds good though doesn't it?

But should you decide to indulge in a little pampering then im here to help! There is lots of scrumptious new products online now, and plenty of new scents as well as some old favourites returning.

Go on, you deserve a treat!!

Maryann xx

Sunday, 30 September 2012


So the children spent hours collecting 100's of conkers yesterday, it seemed a waste to just throw them all back and you just know how upset the little ones would have been! So here's my attempt at a Autumn themed table centrepiece -

It looks rather pretty lit on a cosy evening! Any suggestions on what to do with the rest?

Saturday, 22 September 2012

News from One Stop Pamper Shop, Oh some from Handmade too!

Hi, I hope this finds you well? I have spent this week stressing over the new shop and worrying that the car has failed its MOT, this is always a good time of year! :) 

Exciting times though, as stressful as it is, the second of our "Handmade" stores is opening in Lavenham next Saturday, onwards and upwards. Do pop in to the Colchester or Lavenham store if you are local, its always nice to meet you.

If you are a crafter then we need you!! We are currently looking for the following crafts A potter, woodturner, moneybox maker - these are requested so often! A memory box maker and possibly a patchworker. There is room for other crafts too, but these are requested quite often! For more info please take a look at the Handmade website

This week our special offer is a sale across the whole store! 15% off absolutely everything over at 

There has been lots of new scents added in the last month, if you are looking forward to autumn try a hot cocoa or crackling log fire. Want to hang on to summer? Then a summer sunrise is just what you need! 

As ever -  If you cannot see what you are looking for or there is a scent we dont currently stock, please get in contact and we will do our best to help and remember, Everything we stock is cruelty free, of the highest standards, properly certified and NEVER tested on animals.

Many thanks for all your valued custom and support

Thursday, 26 July 2012

A cheesy adventure

I've been getting rather stressy lately, which doesn't make for a very crafty mummy!  So a while ago I made a rule that I'd no longer work after actually leaving work. (blogging doesn't count does it?) which left me with lots of time on my hands to try new things, I've been looking at all the recipes on Pinterest for making Mozzarella and that seemed like a good "new thing" to try.

Cheese by Mummy, photo's mostly by Katelyn (very nearly 3)

We followed this recipe with a few adaptions I'll highlight


Things you need

  • 6-quart (or bigger) heavy stainless steel or Enamel pot (no aluminium)
  • Thermometer sensitive to at least 110 F
  • Slotted spoon
  • 2-quart microwaveable bowl
  • Microwave
  • Stove
  • Latex gloves
  • 1.5 teaspoons of citric acid
  • 1/2 cup of cool water
  • 1/4 teaspoon of liquid rennet (or 1/4 of rennet tablet)
  • 1/4 cup of cool, unchlorinated water
  • 1 gallon of pasteurised whole milk
  • Bowl of ice-cold water
  1. 1
    Disinfect your working surface area with your household sanitiser.
  2. 2
    Wash your pot thoroughly in warm water. An important step to perform before starting making Mozzarella is to remove any residues that may interfere with the process of making cheese. 

    1. 3
      Fill your pot with warm water, and place on a stove top on high heat. Bring the water to a boil. Remove the pot from the heat and place your utensils in the boiling water. Let sit for ten minutes.
    2. 4
      Remove utensils from boiling water and allow them to air dry. Discard the water from the pot and allow it to air dry.
    3. 5
      Dissolve 1.5 teaspoons of citric acid in 1/2 cup of cool water. Set aside. 
      Citric acid didn't sound very appetising, with the help of Kerry's mum (kerry runs where you can buy pretty things by the way) I discovered that 1 1/2 lemons had the same amount of citric acid in as 1 1/2 teaspons of the powdered stuff. Sounds much nicer and more natural?

      who knew lemons were that tasty?

      6             Dilute 1/4 teaspoon liquid rennet (or 1/4 rennet tablet) in 1/4 cup cool, unchlorinated water. You can use distilled water. Regular tap water has a high percentage of chlorine, which will stop the action of the rennet (forming the curds). Set aside. 
      The water part I was unprepared for, I think bottled water is the same? Anyway, it worked! WE found Rennet quite easily at lakeland for just £1.49, and it will make lots of batches of cheese!
    4. 7
      Pour 1 gallon of pasteurised whole milk into the clean pot. Place on stove top over medium/low heat and then add the citric acid solution while stirring.
    5. 8
      Immerse the thermometer in the milk and heat to 32.2 degrees C. The milk will start to curdle. Stir in the diluted rennet solution slowly, with an up-and-down motion, while the milk is heating to 100 F.
      This just warms the milk, it doesn't get really hot so perfect for small people to do. 

    6. 9
      Turn off the the heat. Wait until the curds (the solidified part of the milk) have pulled away from the pot and have a bit of a shine. The whey (the remaining liquid) should be clear. If the whey is still milky, wait a bit more.

    7. 10
      Scoop out the curds with the slotted spoon and place in the microwaveable bowl. Put your latex gloves on and press the curds gently with your hands, pouring off as much whey as possible.
      Ah too much messing about! we used a sieve!

    8. 11
      Microwave the curds on high for one minute. Drain off the rest of the whey. Fold the the curds over and over to distribute the heat throughout the curds. Microwave two more times for 35 seconds each, kneading and removing excess whey after each time.

    9. 12
      Knead quickly until the curds are smooth, shiny and stretch like taffy. Roll the cheese into small balls. Place the cheese in a bowl of ice cold water for 1/2 an hour to bring the inside temperature of the cheese down rapidly, which will ensure the smooth texture of the cheese. Eat immediately or cover and store in the refrigerator.
      And of course for at least some of the cheese we missed this step! We ate it warm

And I must say - its lovely!!

Wednesday, 23 May 2012

At last!! A Theo Paphitis #SBS win!!

At last, after a mere 81 attempts, I finally won a #SBS RT from the lovely Theo Paphitis

"I won I won I won!! Wooohoo! was my initial reaction... no, that's telling a lie, my initial reaction is unrepeatable!! lol It was completely out of the blue and very unexpected, I had settled down with a cup of coffee, and decided to do my Photography coursework. All of a sudden I got a text from the lovely sarah from telling me to "get your butt on twitter" lol 
Its such a honour to be part of this very exclusive club, I am so amazed and proud that Theo Paphitis picked me!! Perhaps he just got bored of me tweeting him after 81 entries though?? lol. Whatever it is I haven't stopped smiling yet!!

I have already had the honour of meeting Theo, Back in March when I went to the #sbs event with Sarah, but of course there is nothing like being a winner in your own right! Something I am incredibly thankful to be!

This is a huge thing for little me, a nice big push in the right direction. It has already brought new followers on twitter, more traffic to the website and the welcome from the other club members has been lovely, In the future it should bring new networking opportunities - the #SBS club all seem to help each other out where they can! It should help get our name out there - word of mouth is the best form of advertising after all. Its a great achievement, come at a time when everything is going so fantastically well anyway, it's the icing on the cake.  

For those of you that arent sure that its all about, here is the link

And of course the link to my #SBS page

Monday, 30 April 2012

Opening day!!

Well didn't that go well! I really cannot express how pleased I am at how our opening day went, im not entirely sure what I was expecting, but this was so much more! We started at 9am with a mad dash for cake before the photographer arrived at 9.30, I made it just in time with just one hole in my tights! Well you have to have cake right??

Lots of people came down for the day, including my lovely sister all the way from Northampton, Sarah from, Cari Wilkins our calligrapher, Michelle Fuller our photographer and far too many tweeters to mention! And of course the people just passing in the street. It really was a rather busy day. Things are flying off the shelves! I wont waffle on too long - I could go for hours about nothing. I'll just leave you with some of the photos of the day. 

Oh and also..... Some people really are missing a trick here! A couple of people have dropped out of having shelf space just a couple of days before opening, which means I have some shelf space available!

We have been open just 2 days and around 60% of our renters have made at least one sale. Some have made many many more!

If renting some space interests you please see

Im afraid there is no more room for jewellery, cards or bath products though.

Thursday, 12 April 2012

Press Release

From: Handmade
6 Sir Isaacs Walk
Contact: Maryann Morris


Handmade hits the High Street

Colchester , Essex . 13 Apr 2012.

Local candlemaker Maryann Morris is soon to be opening a handmade shop on Colchester's Sir Issac Walk, the shop will be entirely stocked with British, artisan-made products

For the last six years mum of 5, Maryann has run her own candlemaking business, and for the last year she has been selling her wares in a craft centre in Essex. After the success of this she feels the time is now right to take this experience and bring something new and exciting to the High Street and make handmade more accessible

The shop will be filled with products from over 30 British designer makers from around the UK, showcasing the best of British Handmade and encapsulating Maryann's dream of bringing handmade to the High st. From homeware to jewellery, from accessories to bath goodies; Handmade High St will be your One Stop Pamper Shop for handmade luxuries and gifts for all the family.

Opening day is the 28th of April 2012 with prize draws and special offers on the day, please pop in and join us for tea and cake!


For more information please contact or see the website

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

A manic week in the pamper household!

Wow! What a whirlwind the last couple of weeks have been! Not only have I been working rather hard getting things ready for the new shop (which is coming along fabulously) I have won a competition, wandered around London with a camera and actually looked like I knew what I was doing AND I have been to Birmingham to meet the lovely Theo Paphitis! No I'm not dreaming and I have the evidence to prove it!

I'll start with the competition - A few of you might know I'm doing a level 3 NCFE in photography at college, we was set a task by the local council who are redeveloping Basildon town centre, after living there for 26 years I can honestly say it really needs it! ...back on track again... We were asked to photograph the town centre so there was a record of what it was like before, and I believe so they have some images to use on their website and literature! Well off I went, thinking I would have a go, but as its a subject I most passionately dislike, 100% thought I wouldn't even place in the competition. But, along came college night and to my complete surprise, I WON! How did that happen? I still don't much like the photo but I think that has more to do with where it is rather than what it is, I'll let you see that for yourself.  Cue the local press photographer making us pose for photographs for the local paper! Can you tell I'm very prepared! lol

The winning photo

Me with Danika Gigg and Michelle Fuller who came 2nd and 3rd

The rest of the week was spent making preparations for the new shop, which includes this rather shiny new website where you will be able to see what artists are in the store and get lots of information

Fast forward to my trip to London, now I've never done the touristy thing in London so this was very exciting for me. We arrived early, and decided to go to the Tate and see what all the fuss was about. Well, I'm still not sure what all the fuss was about, I'm sure we needed someone much more in touch with their artistic side to show us round - any takers? So we left there, and went looking for our tutor, which of course, because I am excellent at loosing things.. we couldn't find! Oops! After much searching, facebooking and phoning we found him! Wooohooo! And of course had a lovely evening wandering along the river.

Then it was onto Leighton Buzzard, that night!

Back in June last year Sarah from won a retweet on twitter by Theo Paphitis as part of his small business Sunday promotion. Theo arranged for a event for all the winners to go to, each bringing a guest and Sarah kindly asked me along. So then it was off to Sarah's house, I stayed there the night before so we wouldn't be late to meet Theo the next day (see above for my lack of organisational skills) I was every bit as nervous as she was! A new dress and shoes had to be bought! Not that we even dreamt that we would meet him, I imagined that he would just be "up there" on stage somewhere, wasn't I wrong! Just as I was shoving a sandwich in my mouth, Theo entered the room right in front of us,oops, note to self - that is NOT a good look! It was a fantastic day, meeting not only the man himself, but lots of friends and customers I have spent the last couple of years chatting with on twitter, its nice to put faces to the names and I certainly brought alot away with me! Theo was talking about his early years in business and the issues that can arise, its great to hear all that from someone who has made it! Its certainly given me a renewed appetite for my little business!

Please do not use these images without permission 

Friday, 9 March 2012

A day of change and relaxation

Well today I skived off work, taking advantage of one of the last opportunities i'm going to get to do that! I went to meet with the new landlord to chat about a few things and get a moving in date!! Thats it, its definitely happening, no backing out now! And I wanted to get some photo's so I have something to refer to when planning the decoration and shelving placement. Exiting times! Do you want to see? Well of course you do, and im going to show you even if you don't because I am pretty excited about it! Although the photos aren't very good, they were taken on my little point and shoot and make the place look smaller than it is. And the decor is really rather dodgy right now. But all that can be fixed! 

Other side upstairs

Downstairs, even more of those "lovely" colours

My creating area will be at the back there

Towards the front door, there is a back door to leading to a tiny little court yard, im thinking some flowers and a little table out there for coffee time! And to top it all I had the local paper ringing me this afternoon to do my interview about the place! The photographer will be out on monday :D

After all this mornings excitement the small person and I decided we would get all messy with some painting, its not often I get to sit and just mess about like that so that was rather lovely!

Back to work tomorrow! 

Monday, 5 March 2012

Shelf renting info

I have finally found and got the shop that would be just perfect for us!

The shop is along Sir Isaacs Walk in Colchester, with good pedestrian foot fall, directly opposite Karen Millen and close to Culver Square Shopping Centre which includes shops occupied by retailers such as Debenhams and TK Max . Isnt it just the prettiest little place?

Now the plan is to make my candles on site, giving a reason to step in even if its just to watch, rent shelf space to other high end designer makers, and have the occasional guest workshop. 

For those of you that are interested in renting some space, the details are as follows -

The prices will also include storage space, you can send extra stock so as you sell I can stock up your  space. And you will have the option of sending more if you completely sell out half way through the month.

You can choose whether I send you your profits weekly or monthly

I will send a daily email to all those that have sold.

Business cards can also be displayed appropriately on your shelves. 

Stock will of course remain yours until sold.

Now for the prices - 

Cabinets/shelving will be provided by me, you just need to send the items

The spaces will be 1x1 foot at £7 per week
5 foot along the top of a cabinet £7 per week
and 2x1 foot shelves visible from the window at £10 per week.

The minimum rental time is 4 weeks, payable in advance, all I ask is that you give me 2 weeks notice if you would prefer not to rent the space the next month. 

If you are interested please leave me a message here or send me a email  to

Thursday, 1 March 2012

Operation handmade high street

Is still GO! The last shop I looked at fell through spectacularly! But this doesn't put me off, since then I have looked at lots more and I think, and hope, I have finally found the one! Yippeee! It should be all finalised sometime around... Monday. And there's lots of ideas all swimming round my head, competing for what little space there is in there (well I thought I would say it before anyone else does)

Its a lovely little shop with wonky walls and old fashioned charm, and im completely in love with it, im sure you will be too when you see it.

Im still on the look out for crafters who would like to rent some shelf space in my wonky shop so if you are interested, or know anyone that would be please shout - you know where to find me, I get EVERYWHERE lol

There is a little favour I'd like to ask..... to help fund this shop I have applied for some outside funding which requires people to vote for my idea, I need just 500 votes (I have 130 already)  it takes just one minute to sigh up to the site, then pop back and click the vote for me button, pretty please? Well heres the link if you decide to help

I should be back monday with more news!

Sunday, 8 January 2012

So close.....

....but still so far a cliche I know! But it really sums up how I'm feeling right now. This shop business is a uphill struggle! I still haven't found out if I'm going to get the shop, my offer was accepted but that still depends on the references. Which the bank for one said they didn't do! Cue 6 hours over 2 days spend in the bank arguing that they do do it, its on their website that they do and their own customer service tells me they do! And all this wasted time means someone else might get in there with a better offer and nab it first! Grrr.

On a happier note, the money for the deposit has almost been raised! Just another £250 to go and we are there!!! Wooohooo! Im getting all excited and making a list (and checking it twice... not quite out of Christmas mode yet!) of who I would like to stock in the shop, taking into consideration that they might not want to join in the fun so I'm making it HUGE so there will be enough. The local press is also interested and I've barely begun!

Please keep your fingers crossed for me, hopefully I'll find out this week.

In the meantime there's still a little money to be saved and all purchases go towards the deposit fund, and I'm having a clear out of crafty bits I no longer use, most have never left the packets so the other half is happy its finally leaving the house, so here's some links that may be of interest ;) of course! There is still a sale on until tomorrow. Lots of vintage crockery thats just waiting to be filled with candles and sent off to a new home

And a whole heap of destash thats just crying to be loved!

Maryann xx

Sunday, 1 January 2012

New year, new opportunities

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and a immensely fun new years eve? With new year comes new hope and new opportunities. This year I'm hoping I will have the opportunity to open a gorgeous little high street shop! I've made a offer and its been accepted. All I've to do now is get the deposit together - yes I know that should have come first, but hey, I'm not known for being organized lol. 
And decide exactly what I would like to put in this shop, I am rather keen on the phrase "bringing handmade to the high street" and that exactly what I would like to do, a unique collection of products you just can't buy anywhere else. As well as being a working craft shop with workshops and guest classes.
But I can't make everything myself can I? And I know alot of you are crafters. So... how about....
Renting shelves!   I'm not entirely sure of the hows whats and whys?
What would you expect to pay for it?
Would you expect to pay commission on sold items as well?
Would you prefer sale or return?
Would you be interested in the first place?
Would it be ethical of me to be selective?
Im sure theres alot more im going to ask, but I’d really appreciate it if you would help me bash out some ideas here?