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Jonny & Anna’s Story

January 26, 2016
We’re old romantics here at PhotoBox and nothing warms our hearts more than a good old proposal. So, when it happens to involve a PhotoBox photo book, plus weeks (or months!) of planning…even better!  A slightly panicked customer (Jonny) got in touch with us last year to get an update on his photo book order. Nothing too out of the ordinary – most people can’t wait to get their hands on their gifts, but this was one deadline we couldn’t ignore – a proposal to his girlfriend, Anna!  We asked Jonny to tell us a little bit more about how he got the idea, and more importantly – if she said ‘yes’!  Anna & Jonny The Background In the 15 months that I’ve been going out with my girlfriend Anna, lots of things have changed. My bank balance has steadily decreased, I now know about Cath Kidston and I have watched more episodes of the ‘Great British Bake Off’ than I’m comfortable admitting. However, one thing that has remained consistent over the course of our relationship is my ability to be continuously late for nearly every date we go on, so it’s probably not that surprising that when I decided to ask Anna the big question after months of preparation, I nearly messed it up because I ordered something late. The Mission I had been going out with Anna for just over a year when I decided that this intelligent, kind, funny, beautiful girl was the person I wanted to spend the rest of my life with. Planning the proposal was tricky – I wanted it to a) be personal b) reflect just how much Anna meant to me and c) be memorable for Anna. Several ideas were explored, but nothing really appealed to me, until I came across an advertisement for photo books from PhotoBox and immediately realised that I could create a storybook for Anna (who loves photos!). For over a month I collected old family photos along with all the photos we had taken over the course of our relationship – almost 400 photos in total – and organised them all into a story, starting with some old photos of us both, followed by how we met, our first date and then photos of us as a couple. The final chapter of the book began with my favourite photos of Anna, followed by a photo of her parents and a caption saying that I had asked them a question. The next page showed me standing outside a jewellers shop, followed by another photo showing a hand made box with Anna’s name on it (with the ring inside!). The penultimate page was in the form of a letter, listing some of the things I loved about Anna and telling her how much she meant to me. The last photo in the book was of our name on wedding place cards, and a note saying I’d like her to be my wife! The Proposal I wanted to propose to Anna in one of our favourite places so made arrangements to take her away for the weekend under the guise of celebrating the completion

Valentine’s Day Gifts on a budget

January 25, 2016
If you’re looking to spoil your loved one this Valentine’s Day, but your bank balance has seen better days – we’ve got you. Here are our wallet-friendly suggestions that – at £12 or under, won’t break the bank, but will still give them that warm, fuzzy feeling on the 14th. Who said romance is dead… 12 ways to say ‘I Love You’… You will have definitely heard us mention Retro Prints before, but we’re just so impressed with them that we can’t help  ourselves.  Put pen to Retro Print and write what you love most about your other half. Go one step further, like us, and write it in the language of love (we may have had a little help with that!)  And, starting from £9.99 for a pack of 12 – you’ll be laughing all the way to the bank.  Blossoming love Show them that you’re anything but prickly with a cute cactus planted in one of our personalised Bone China photo mugs.  Top tip: make sure you keep the cacti in it’s original pot so you can still water it & allow it to drain every once in a while. Mugs from £8.00, Cacti from £2.50  If they’re distinctly lacking in the green finger department, fill a mug with their favourite sweets…something they definitely can’t forget to water!  Typography & Tea We’ve created some illustrations that you can download & add to a mug, making the perfect gift for the Mr or Mrs in your life. Alternatively, if they aren’t a fan of coffee (or green tea), you could use a site like Canva to create your own personalised message that you can add to a photo mug. Just don’t forget to make them a cup of tea! Mugs from £8.00 And, if you’ve decided you’re feeling a little more lavish than our suggestions, head on over to our Valentine’s Day Gift Guide for lots more ideas.

Trick or Treat Party Favours by MummyMode

October 19, 2015
”Halloween is here again and we’re ready to throw a pumpkin-filled party. Always searching for unique event ideas, I wanted to find an end-of-party favour idea which would really wow. Looking to avoid the standard plastic goodie bag offering, I decided to order some PhotoBox personalised photo mugs. Emblazoning the mugs with pictures of the kids and filling them with sweets, these ghoulish goodies are the ideal treat to take home. As family members are also coming to our Halloween ‘do, I know they will be more than happy with a little Lyla and Theo memento. Using photos of the kids in cute cat and crocodile costumes, I altered the shading for a spookier effect. Focusing on seasonal colours, our mantra was the more garish the better. Ordering mugs with bold green and gold detail, Halloween quotes also seemed appropriate to add in. With plenty of choice, you can pick photo mug themes and colours from a big selection. We ordered the Colour Bright Mugs and my favourite, the Photo Magic Mug. Initially seeming a simple black mug, just add hot water to the Photo Magic Mug and see the photo gradually appear. A good party trick under candlelit atmosphere, this mug will no doubt double up as my witch’s cauldron! These party favour mugs would work well for any occasion, acting as a permanent keepsake once the goodies are devoured. For Christmas grandparent gifts, I’m thinking of a cosy snowflake theme with hot chocolate and marshmallows inside. In the meantime, our new mugs will make good loot storage pots when doing the trick or treat rounds. All ready for fright night, I’m just not sure these sweets will stay uneaten until then. Any excuse for a little extra (trick or) treat. Thanks for the spooky idea, MummyMode!  To see more ideas from MummyMode, you can head to her blog, Instagram or Twitter

DIY: Retro Print mobile

October 16, 2015
You might remember that, in the Summer, we showed you how to make your very own Retro Print Rainbow. Well, now that Autumn is well and truly here, we thought we’d show you another DIY project you can easily recreate at home with your own set of Retro Prints. To create this Retro Print wall hanging, you’ll need: 1 stick or branch from outside (clean it off first!) Mini pegs String A pack of Retro Prints Tie a length of string on one end of your branch, fasten to the other end. Pick a suitable spot on your wall and hang the branch, using the string & a nail or hook. Tie 3 or 4 lengths of string, spaced out, along the branch. The benefit of hanging the branch first, means that you can check you’ve spaced evenly and see how the string will hang. Then all you need to do is peg your chosen retro prints down the strands of string. Easy! The beauty of this is that you can use it to brighten up any blank wall around your house and change your Retro Prints around as often as you like. We love this autumnal DIY idea!

Holiday photo gallery |The Travel Hack

August 26, 2015
Create a photo gallery with your holiday snaps Is anyone else suffering from the post-holiday blues? You’ve had an amazing summer holiday and you’ve returned home with a bump. Probably a soggy bump thanks to all this rain in the UK! You’re back to work and it’s almost as though your holiday never happened. Those memories of sipping cocktails at sunset and swimming in the clear sea are starting to fade already. Don’t let the post-holiday blues get to you and make sure you keep those memories fresh by printing out your holiday snaps and displaying them around your home. Thanks to affordable cameras and mobile devices we all take hundreds of photos while we’re on holiday. We plaster them across social media and send them to our mates to make them jealous, but how many of us print them out and cherish them? It’s time to get those photos printed and enjoy your summer holiday all year round! One of the best ways to display your holiday photos is with a gallery wall. This current trend is a modern and fun way to decorate your home and it will bring back happy memories every time you enter the room. What you’ll need… A large, blank wall It’s time for a bit of DIY and clutter removal! Most of us don’t have large, blank walls in our homes because we’ve crammed the space with shelves and tables and other bits and bobs. Have a serious de-clutter and rearrange your furniture so you have a blank wall without too much distracting clutter. I think a white, painted wall with black frames works best but anything relatively plain will work well. Your favourite photos This is the hardest part about creating a gallery wall – selecting which photos you’d like to use. Try to stick to one theme or one particular holiday so all the photos are tied together and don’t appear too random. A huge variety of wall decor You now need to get those photos printed in a variety of ways. Opt for a mixture of canvas prints, poster prints, framed prints and mounted prints. My favourites are the Timeless Framed Prints for a really affordable but professional looking finish. Make a plan Before ordering your wall décor, take a piece of paper and make a plan of how it will look on your wall. This is to ensure you’re ordering the correct size and it all fits perfectly. Get creative here. Some people will prefer to display their pictures in a completely random way while others will prefer a more uniform collection. Precision Even if you’re going for the ‘random look’ when hanging your pictures, make sure they’re all straight and securely hung. You’ll need a tape measure, a level, a pencil, a drill or screwdriver and a few pairs of hands to help! High quality vs. low quality photos Most people will have a mixture of photos taken with their phone or taken with a camera. The camera