Showing posts with label Creativity. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Creativity. Show all posts

Tuesday, 31 March 2020

So Slime DIY Slimelicious Soda Shop - A Review

You may have seen from some of our previous reviews, that Riley absolutely loves all things slime, especially when it comes to making his own slimelicious creations. I therefore decided that whilst home schooling this week, we would use a So Slime DIY kit for one of his creativity lessons, that we were recently sent to review.


So Slime DIY have a great selection of products available, but for this review we used the Soda Slimelicious Set which is recommended for children aged 6+. The front of the box has a bright and colourful design which resembles a shop front and features plenty of images along with three clear windows so that you can see some of the products inside.


On the side of the packaging is some simple three step instructions and the rear of the box provides even more images along with a contents list. The whole design is really bright and appealing, which definitely makes it stand out. I also noticed some small pieces of text that stated it was a no mess product, which definitely gave it bonus points from me.


The box was simple to open and we were able to remove all the items from the packaging with ease. The full contents included:

  • 2 Mini Slime Shakers
  • 6 Scented Slime Powders
  • 2 Charms
  • 3 Decoration Bags

Riley lay all the different coloured slime powders out and decided that he wanted to use the green colour first. He then chose which decorations he would like to add once the slime was ready and we began to create our slime.


The whole process was super simple and made no mess either. Firstly we poured the powder into one of the slime shakers and then added some water up to the line. I then clicked the lid into place to ensure there was no spillages and Riley set about shaking the water and powder together for approximately 30 seconds.

We then left it to set for just over 5 minutes before checking on it and letting it set for a further couple of minutes, before adding our chosen decorations. Riley decided to add the Lemon Fizz packet and he did this by pouring a small quantity directly into the slime and then added a further amount with his hands, mixing the slime and decorations together. The slime is also nicely scented, with the smell not being too overpowering.


We both really liked how easy it was to make and the slime shakers can also be used as storage tubs, so that you can place your slime in there to be used again. The inclusion of six different powders also means that it is a set that can be used quite a few times before you run out and being small in size they are easy enough to put away for use another day.

Overall this was a fun and creative product that Riley and I really enjoyed doing together. It was so simple to use and the instructions were very easy to follow. The RRP of this set is only £7.99 which I think represents really good value for money and I like the fact that there is the opportunity to make six sets of slime. I will definitely be purchasing more So Slime DIY sets in the future and would happily recommend this toy to others.

This item has an RRP of £7.99 and is from Canal Toys. If you would like to find out more about Canal Toys and their great range of products, then you can visit their website or social media pages on the following channels:

Website - www.canaltoys.com


*Disclaimer - This is a collaborative post and we were gifted this So Slime DIY set for the purpose of writing an honest review of the product. All thoughts and opinions are my own unless otherwise stated. Details provided are believed to be correct at the time of writing.

Wednesday, 4 December 2019

Creating Gummy Sweets with Bandai Foodie Surprise! - Review

Foodie Surprise is a brand new craft toy collectible from Bandai, that combines the fun of getting crafty and creative with a collectible treat. It is the world's first sweet making collectible and the DIY sweet making kits come with everything you need to get started in making your very own gummy sweets.

There are currently four main Foodie Surprise Food Carts to collect which are the Ice Cream Cart, the Pizza Cart, the Sushi Cart and the Bubble Tea Cart.  Each of these come complete with a mould for creating your sweets, along with a sweetie storage collectible containing at least 10 surprises inside. As well as the Food Carts, you can also purchase Mini Collectible Take Out Sets, which are smaller than the main Food Carts, but still contain all you need to get started.


Riley was sent several products from the range to review and he couldn't wait to get started making his very own sweets. We began with the Foodie Surprise Food Cart, as this was the first item that caught Riley's attention and we opened the box to find out what was inside. We had received an Ice Cream Cart and enclosed within the box was:

  • 1 Food Cart
  • 1 Candy Storage Container
  • Numerous packs of Candy Powder
  • 1 Collector's Poster
  • 1 Eye Dropper
  • 1 Mixing Tool
  • 1 Mixing/Measuring Cup
  • Vac Form Mould Trays
  • 1 Ball Chain
  • A set of instructions

We began by having a look through the instructions to get a good idea of what we needed to do, before beginning to create the first part of our Foodie Surprise sweets. The first item we created were the waffle bowls and we filled the measuring jug with water up to the recommended fill line in the guide.


We then added the peach coloured powder and mixed the solution together. We then poured this into the moulds and allowed them to set. Next up was the cherries, so I gave the tools a quick wash and then followed the same process of filling the measuring cup to the guide line and adding the red powder to create our gummy cherries. It was then the same process for the gummy bananas so we were starting to get the hang of things.

The ice cream scoops were slightly different as this involved rolling the mixture into a ball using your hands, much to Riley's delight. We did this for both the Vanilla ice cream scoops and the Strawberry scoops.

With our sweet treats now starting to take shape we commenced the final part of the process to create the drizzle topping, which was really easy to do and Riley was really pleased with his finished Foodie Surprise Gummy Sweets. These could be placed into the food cart, which involved a minimal amount of self assembly and our set was then complete. Our first attempt turned out well with a jelly like texture, so our attention then turned to the Takeouts Box.


Our smaller Foodie Surprise Takeouts Box contained a Foodie Surprise Donut Takeout Set, Confectionary Powder, Moulds, an Eye Dropper, Measuring Cup and a Mixing Tool. The instructions were simple enough, however they are visual with images as opposed to text and personally I prefer written instructions to ensure that we are following the process accurately.


Our Donut set involved three different elements that we needed to make, starting with the donut dough base and then followed by the green and white icing. Riley really enjoyed it and he loved the fact that he was making his own sweets which made our efforts completely worth while. The process is a little time consuming and our donut dough gummy seemed to have a different consistency to the gummy sweets we had created previously, so I was a little unsure as to whether we had done this one correctly and without a written guide to refer to, it was hard to tell.

Overall Riley enjoyed attempting to make some gummy sweets that we could eat and it was fun to try a completely different kind of creative activity. There are 4 food carts to collect in Series One which come in two different colour ways for each theme and I like the fact that the food carts can also be used as storage for the sweets or moulds once you have finished your sweetie-making craft. Riley really enjoyed creating gummy sweets himself and then displaying them in his food cart. He would then pretend that he was running a sweet shop and would invite his brother and sister to come and sample his food. We found the Foodie Surprise Food Cart sweets turned out much better for us than the Takeouts Box, but Riley enjoyed using both items. The products are recommended for children aged 6+ and I think that this is accurate with parental help and supervision. 

The Foodie Surprise Food Cart has an RRP of £15.00, whilst the Foodie Surprise Takeouts Box has an RRP of £8.00. Both of these items are available for sale from toy retailers including The Entertainer, Smyths Toys and Amazon.


*Disclaimer - We were gifted these products for the purpose of writing an honest review of the items and our experience. All opinions and photographs are my own unless otherwise stated. This post contains an Amazon affiliate link.

Friday, 5 October 2018

Our Review of the Num Noms Lip Gloss Truck Playset

Num Noms are the super cute collectible range that not only look like food, but smell like it too! By mixing a num and a nom you can create your very own flavours and make deliciously scented treats. Some also contain surprises such as lip gloss or nail varnish which are sure to be popular with any mini-makeup fans.

Some people may consider the Num Noms Lip Gloss Truck to be a 'girls toy', but my son Riley loves all kinds of toys, whether that be his trains, cars and building tools, or his dolls house, princess teddies and kitchen. He absolutely loves pretend play and can use his imagination to create many different scenarios that help him to have fun. When opportunities arise for product reviews such as this one, I will always ask Riley whether it is something he would want to try out and when he saw the Num Noms Lip Gloss Truck, it was a definite YES PLEASE!


I explained to him that you could create your own lip gloss using the truck and he was so excited by the thought that he could make his mummy some special make-up all by himself, as well as having a super cool truck to add to his vehicle collection. He loved how cute the Num Noms looked and waited very patiently for the product to arrive a few days later.

On arrival, it was much bigger than he had expected, so he was really excited to open up the packaging and put it to the test. His older sister was on hand to help him out with the scissors and she carefully removed all the packaging for him. Some parts were a little tricky, so I would definitely recommend having a grown up on hand to help remove all the pieces from the box.


Inside the packaging the product contained:

 - Num Noms Lip Gloss Truck
 - 1 Lip Gloss Base
 - 2 Lip Gloss Flavours
 - 1 Glitter Sprinkles
 - 1 Cupcake Making Tool with Cherry Spatula
 - 1 Special Edition Scented Num
 - 3 Lip Gloss Container Noms

The truck was already assembled, so all Riley needed to do was place the smaller individual items into the Lip Gloss Truck. He excitedly picked up the ingredients to make the lip gloss and decided that he was going to make some for his sister first. There is a large tub of lip gloss provided and you simply scoop some of this, add one of the flavours (cleverly designed as sauce bottles), finishing off with some glitter sprinkles. You can then place this in the 'Mr Whippy' style ice cream dispenser and push the lip gloss through using the plunger provided and into your chosen pot, cone or ice cream glass below.


Riley absolutely loved pretending he was an ice cream seller and made several different flavours of lip gloss for both his sister and me. He then pretended that he had his own shop and we had to smell and test out his creations. He then decided that it would be a 'drive-through' ice cream stall where you could purchase ice cream or make-up, so he got all of his other toy vehicles and made them form an orderly queue. It was certainly a toy that inspired Riley to use his imagination and creativity, which was great to see.

It is a multi-purpose toy, so as well as the facility to make lip gloss, it can also be used as a play set and toy vehicle as the wheels move around easily. The handle on the top makes the toy easy to carry and all of the contents can pack away nicely inside or on top of the truck. Visually it looks bright, colourful and appealing and certainly stands out.

Riley asked me a couple of times why there was no music and in fairness I can see his point. In a product that looks just like an ice cream truck, it would have been great to have had a button that played some tunes whilst being moved around. If I was to make any changes to the toy then the addition of some music, sound effects or lights would be it.


There is enough lip gloss base provided to make six good sized portions and Riley made three lots during his first time of playing with the toy. He is five years old and found the process easy enough to do by himself, though I would always recommend parental supervision just in case of any mishaps or spillages.

As you can imagine the lip gloss does get sticky and a little messy too, so it is best to clean the dispenser, cupcake tool and spatula as soon as you have finished creating. I found that soap & water didn't work too great in removing all the lip gloss, so Riley suggested using baby wipes. This was an excellent idea as these worked perfectly in cleaning the entire truck ready to be used again.

Overall we thought that the Num Noms Lip Gloss truck was great. We all had so much fun making our own creations and I couldn't help but have a go myself. I think the toy is well designed with minimal small parts and it is very easy to pack everything away. We loved its versatility of being a creative toy, but also one that could be used as a vehicle in other imaginative ways. I like the fact that once all the lip gloss has been used and made, Riley will still have a truck that he can play with whenever he wants which is great. With an RRP of £29.99 I think it represents good value for money and appears to be a good quality product.

It is available to purchase from Argos, Smyths, The Entertainer, Amazon* and all other good toy retailers.

If you would like to find our more about the Num Noms range, then you can visit their website or social media pages on the following channels:

Website - Num Noms
Facebook - facebook.com/numnoms
Instagram - @officialnumnoms
YouTube - youtube.com/numnoms


Disclaimer: We were sent this product free of charge in order to provide our honest review of the product. Thoughts, opinions and photographs are my own unless otherwise stated. *Link to Amazon is an affiliate link which means that I may receive a small commission should you choose to purchase an item from their website.

Tuesday, 11 September 2018

Aquabeads Minions Playset - Review & Competition

After all the glorious sunshine we have had this summer, the weather was bound to turn eventually and this weekend saw us endure some heavy rain and wind. However, whilst our plans for some outdoor fun may have been placed on hold, we certainly weren't short of some indoor activities to enjoy, starting with our favourite crafty and creative toy....Aquabeads!

Our last Aquabeads review featured the Star Wars Playset, which Riley really enjoyed, but we were recently sent this Despicable Me Minions Playset which features some marvellous Minion characters to create. Riley couldn't wait to get the box open and get started on his designs.


The front of the box is really bright and colourful and features several Minion characters. One thing that stood out to us, was the image of the bead peeler in the centre of the box, as none of the previous sets we have used included one of these. We all agreed that the graphics were displayed well, with plenty of informative detail on the packaging, such as a mini three-step guide as to how Aquabeads stick together with the water spray.

It also stated that it only takes 10 minutes to peel, so we were keen to try this claim out as we often leave our creations to dry for a much longer period.


As always the reverse of the box provides a clear contents list so that you are fully informed as to what you are receiving in the playset. There is also an image on the right hand side of the box which provides pictures of all the different characters and items that you can create with the enclosed beads. The Aquabeads Minions Playset includes:
  • Table Tray
  • Bead palette
  • Sprayer
  • Bead Peeler
  • Template sheets
  • Yellow beads x 220
  • Pink beads x 5
  • Brown beads x 120
  • Blue beads x 151
  • Light blue beads x 20
  • Green beads x 5
  • Black beads x 127
  • Grey beads x 74
  • White beads x 43
  • Brown jewel beads x 5
  • Instructions
The Aquabeads Minion Playset is recommended for children aged 4+, however due to containing small parts, parental supervision is required when being used. There are several clear safety messages on the box and it is important to read these prior to use.


We opened the box and lay all the contents out on the sofa so that we could make sure that we had everything that was needed. Riley really liked that the case was in his favourite colours of blue and yellow, so he was already really happy with the set before we even began.

I cut off the corners of each of the bead packets and Riley arranged them into the case and placed them where he wanted the colours to go. Once everything had been arranged, Riley selected the design that he wanted to attempt first and began to make his creation.


This set also caught his sister's attention and so Emma asked Riley if she could help with one of the designs. Riley was more than happy for them to play together, so Riley followed one template whilst Emma attempted another.


When we first started using Aquabeads a couple of years ago, Riley would often need my help to assist him with placing beads, however he now finds this really easy and found the minion templates simple to follow. He finished his design completely independently and only made one mistake which was the colour of the eyes, opting for two brown beads instead of one brown and one green.

Emma completed the design on template two and it was great to see them playing together nicely throughout the activity.


Once the templates had been completely covered in beads, Riley filled the sprayer with water and began to spray the Minion creations. The sprayer was compact and easy to use and also fitted nicely in the storage case once finished. We left the designs to dry for the recommended 10 minutes and then Riley excitedly used the brand new peeler to remove his Minion from the tray.


The peeler made removing the creations a much easier process. Previously it has been too tricky for Riley to remove them with his fingers, so I have had to take my time to remove them from the tray myself, hopeful that no beads become detached. However, with the peeler, you simply slide this along the roof of the tray and it evenly removes the Aquabeads with ease. It is a great idea and a fabulous addition to this Aquabeads playset. It is great that the company are looking at ways they can improve their product and introducing innovative ideas.


Riley and Emma enjoyed this activity so much, that they continued to use all of the templates in the set, using up nearly all of the beads. I believe that there is a Minion add-on set available, so I will certainly be purchasing this to top up our collection.

The RRP of this set is £19.99 and it can currently be purchased from Amazon* and other good toy retailers. If you are feeling lucky though, then we have a fantastic competition for our readers, to give you the chance to win one of these fantastic Aquabeads Minion Playsets. If you would like to enter then please read the terms and conditions and complete your entry using the gleam form below. Good Luck!

Aquabeads Minion Playset Giveaway!

Terms and Conditions
  • There is 1 (one) prize of an Aquabeads Minions Playset as featured in this review. 
  • Entry is open to UK residents aged 18 years or over.
  • Competition closes on the 30th September 2018 at 23:59.
  • A winner shall be drawn within 7 days of the closing date and notified via email.
  • The winner will have 7 days to confirm their acceptance of the prize before an alternative winner is drawn from remaining eligible entries.
  • No bulk or third party entries.
  • Winner's details shall be shared with the promoter for the purpose of prize fulfilment and permission shall be obtained from the winner prior to doing so.
Disclaimer: We were provided with this product complimentary for the purpose of providing an honest review of the item. Opinions are my own unless otherwise stated. *This post contains an affiliate link to Amazon which means that I may receive a small commission should you choose to purchase from this retailer. 

Wednesday, 20 September 2017

Family Fun with Fuzzy-Felt by John Adams - A Review

We all have toys that we fondly remember playing with as a child and I am no exception. When I was in primary school, I used to have a childminder that would pick me up from school every day and I would go and play at her house for an hour until my mum came to collect me. My childminder had a great range of toys for us to play with, but I always remember getting the same toy out of the cupboard each day and would sit on the carpet happily playing til home time. That particular toy was Fuzzy-Felt.


My childminder had a few different sets, but I always remember my favourites being the house and farm sets. I used to love arranging all the animals on the green background and making farm scenes that would tell a story in my own mind. I was never really brilliant at drawing or art in school and so this was a way I could be creative without needing any certain skills. I could create what I considered at the time to be masterpieces by simply arranging the felt to create a beautiful picture.

This memories were brought to the forefront of my mind recently when the Royal Mail brought out a series of stamps that celebrated children's toys from the past 100 years. Clearly I was not the only one to have loved Fuzzy-Felt, as the Fuzzy-Felt farm set features on one of the new stamps. The stamps recognise the most iconic toys of the last century and so it was of course, only right, that Fuzzy-Felt be included in the collection.

Fuzzy-Felt also has quite an interesting history, in how it actually came to be created and produced as a best selling toy. During the second world war, tank gaskets were made from felt and whilst being manufactured, small pieces of off-cuts would be left over. These 'left overs' then became popular with the children of the factory workers, who would play with the felt. This then led to the creation of Fuzzy-Felt by Lois Allan in 1950.

The toy manufacturer John Adams, now produces a fantastic range of Fuzzy-Felt sets which include the following:

  • Fuzzy-Felt Busy Builders
  • Fuzzy-Felt On Safari
  • Fuzzy Felt Butterflies
  • Fuzzy-Felt Magic Garden
  • Fuzzy-Felt Pet Parlour
  • Fuzzy-Felt Little Princess
  • Fuzzy-Felt Little Ponies
  • Fuzzy-Felt My House
You can view the full range on the John Adams site here: Fuzzy-Felt Range

Being such a fan of Fuzzy-Felt from my earlier years, I was delighted to be sent the Fuzzy-Felt On Safari play set for Riley to test out, enjoy and review. This was something completely new to him and he hasn't come across it in school either, so he was firstly intrigued as to what was involved.



The front of the box immediately caught Riley's attention due to the bright orange background and the images of safari animals and vehicles that were displayed. The contents on the reverse of the box listed that there were over 100 assorted felt shapes inside, so I knew that it would definitely keep us busy for a while. The reverse of the box also lists how Fuzzy Felt can encourage co-ordination, recognition, counting, sorting and story telling, which are all big plus points to aid a childs development.


Inside the box was a green felt board along with several sheets of coloured felt. The sheets had numerous animals, scenery, vehicles and trees imprinted into them and so the first task was to push all the individual pieces of felt out. This kept Riley busy for a good fifteen minutes doing the larger pieces and I helped out with the smaller more tricky ones.


Once we had our collection of Fuzzy-Felt pieces ready, it was time to begin creating our picture. At this point Emma asked if she could help Riley, so I happily let her step in and they worked together nicely, in creating a lovely safari themed landscape. The beauty of Fuzzy-Felt is just how easy it is to do. There are no specific skill sets required and it is just a nice calm activity to do on your own, or together with others. Riley can get a little frustrated if something gets a bit tricky and he can't do something the first time he tries, but with Fuzzy-Felt, there was no chance of him having any difficulties at all.




Riley couldn't stop grinning once his picture was complete and was extremely proud of his efforts. Emma created a story for him based on his creation and they sat together for ages just creating pictures and stories over and over again.


Overall we had a fantastic time making creations with our Fuzzy-Felt set. It was initially an activity I had planned to do with just Riley, due to the guide age on the box being ages 3 to 6. However the whole family ended up getting involved and both Emma and Ben also really enjoyed getting creative and producing their own fuzzy felt masterpieces. We all loved the fact that the pieces can be used over and over again, as well as being able to combine them with the other sets that are available. Emma was fantastic in creating funny stories for Riley based on the pictures he had made and it was lovely to see them laughing and joking together about what the safari animals were up to. He has already added the Farm Fuzzy-Felt play set to his Christmas list too, so he is already keen to start building up his collection.

You can find out more about the Fuzzy-Felt sets that are available by visiting the John Adams website, or their social media channels which can be found here:

Website: John Adams Fuzzy-Felt
Twitter: @JohnAdams_Toys
YouTube: John Adams YouTube Channel


Disclaimer: We were provided with this product on a complimentary basis, for the purpose of providing an honest and impartial review of the product. All opinions and photographs are my own unless stated otherwise.

Thursday, 10 August 2017

Aquabeads Sylvanian Families Refill Set - Review & Competition


As you have probably seen on the blog, we have been very busy lately having some wonderful experiences and visiting some fantastic attractions. However, on the days that we have been at home, it is always great to have something to do with Riley to keep him busy and entertained. Over the last few months we have had the opportunity to try out some wonderful Aquabeads playsets and it has become one of Riley's favourite activities to do at home. This month we were sent a Sylvanian Families Refill Pack which we could use with our existing Aquabeads tools and so we picked a rainy day, to stay at home and have some Aquabeads fun.


Sylvanian Families isn't a brand that Riley is particularly familiar with, however he loves animals and Aquabeads in general. He was therefore delighted to be able to make some animal faces, a house, flowers, fruit and cakes which are all part of this refill set.


The box and packaging is a nice square compact size and costs around £5 from most good toy retailers. This makes it the ideal price for a gift for any Aquabeads fan! The front of the box shows what animals and designs can be made along with an image of a recognisable Sylvanian Family rabbit character. It also states in the top corner that the product is suitable for children aged 4+.

On the reverse of the box is some basic instructions, along with a contents list. This contents list includes:
  • Over 600 beads consisting of red, orange, yellow, light green, light blue,  pink, white, black, ivory and brown colours.
  • 4 x template sheets
  • 1 x instructions


There is also a small advertisement for the accessories that are available separately, which are a layout tray and a sprayer. You will need these to complete your Aquabeads creations, so if you don't already own them, then these will need to be purchased in addition to the set.

If you have never heard or used of Aquabeads before, then basically they are colourful beads that allow you to make beautiful creations. You simply arrange them on your chosen template in the specially designed layout tray, spray them with water and then the beads magically stick together. The templates can be used over and over again, or if you are feeling really creative then you can make up your own designs!

Inside the box everything was neatly packaged and we opened each of the bead bags and arranged them into one of our existing storage cases. Riley had a look through the templates and chose what he would like to create first. The set has a nice mixture of small, medium and large designs which was great for Riley. This meant he could pick and choose between quick and easy designs as well as others that would take more time and concentration such as the house.


Once we had arranged the beads and chosen our templates, we got to work making our designs. They each took between 5 to 15 minutes to make and once completed we gave them a spray with water to hold the beads into place. Riley was able to do all the designs he chose by himself and so he was very proud of his finished creations. We placed the template board on a slight angle in a warm part of the kitchen and left it for just over an hour.

After an hour had passed we removed it from the board and then left it for a further 20-30 minutes. We have found in the past that leaving it this little bit longer makes it slightly firmer and as Riley likes to play with them once they are dry, it makes good sense for us to do this.

Riley really enjoyed this set and just like all his other Aquabeads creations, he was really happy with the outcome. His favourite from this set was the house and the white rabbit and he has added these to his collection. As there were quite a few beads left over he also asked if he could attempt to make his own rainbow, which I agreed was a great idea!



This set is currently available to purchase on Amazon for only £4.99

Competition

We also have a great competition, for the chance to win an Aquabeads Sylvanian Families Refill Pack just like the one featured in this review. If you would like to enter, then please do so, using the gleam form below. Good Luck!

Win an Aquabeads Sylvanian Families Refill Set

Terms & Conditions

There is 1 (one) prize of an Aquabeads Sylvanian Families Refill Pack with an RRP of £4.99. Entry is open to UK residents aged 18 years or over. Competition closes 31st August 2017 at 23:59. A winner shall be drawn at random within 7 days of the closing date, who shall be notified via email. The winner will have 7 days to confirm their acceptance of the prize before an alternative winner is chosen. No bulk or third party entries. Parental supervision is recommended when using this product due to small parts.

Disclaimer: We were provided with an Aquabeads Sylvanian Families Refill Set on a complimentary basis, for the purpose of providing an honest review of the product. We also received an additional set to give away to one of our readers as a competition prize. This post also contains an affiliate link to Amazon. This means that I may receive a small commission should you choose to complete a purchase after clicking on the link. 

Sunday, 4 June 2017

Personalised Father's Day Gifts with Snapfish - A Review

Father's Day is almost here, on the 18th June to be precise and to be honest, I often find myself purchasing the same kind of gift each year for both my dad and my husband. It's not that I can't think of new ideas, but instead I often resort to the firm favourites that I know they will love. For the last few years I have , I mean my kids have, bought their dad Wales Rally GB tickets. My husband goes every year and with the base now being just down the road it is always a welcome gift. However I could easily buy these at any time of the year for him, especially when he has to wait until October to use them and they aren't really something that is 'personal' to him from the children. With regards to my own dad, I often buy him wine or a new shirt to add to his 'Grandad Shirt' collection as my kids call them.

I was therefore delighted to have the opportunity to try something new this year after I was made aware of the company Snapfish. Their website allows you to create fun personalised gifts and cards, which you can design yourself using your favourite and most cherished photographs. This allows you to display your family moments and memories in a wonderful unique way.


Choosing Your Product

Choosing which product I wanted to purchase was probably the hardest part out of the whole process due to there being so much choice. I wanted to pick something that my dad would use, but also something that I could add numerous images to. The website was really easy to navigate and after selecting the Father's Day section from the contents, I was taken to a page full of gift ideas. The products ranged from mugs to cushions, keyrings to mousemats and phone cases to calendars to name a few. After a good browse through the choices, I decided to purchase a mug for both my dad and my husband, as well as a Personalised Table-Top Panel for my husband that I knew would take pride of place on his desk in work.


The Design Process

I was initially a little worried that it would take ages for me to design the products. As I am often short on time, I was concerned that I may be getting into a long drawn out process of selecting and uploading photographs one at a time and then having to rearrange them in a way that I wanted. However, I needn't have been worried as uploading the photographs was very quick and simple and I was able to select multiple photographs at a time to upload into my Father's Day Album. The majority of the photographs I used were original digital images, however some of the photos I wanted to use on my dad's mug were old photographs that I only had original prints of. As I don't have a working scanner at present, I just took photos of them using my camera phone in order to convert them into a digital image. I was unsure how good the quality would be, but they turned out absolutely fine and I had no issues in applying them to my design.

When I selected the mug option, I was then presented with a layout template, which also had a variety of other options displayed along the left hand side of the page. This included a layouts option which allowed you to amend the formation, a designs option which gave you some pre-designed ideas, a backgrounds option which gave you numerous different patterns, textures and colours to choose from and an embellishments option where you could add text designs or images on top of your photographs. The possibilities seemed literally endless!

Once I had completed my first mug design, I moved on to the second one for my husband. The kids joined in with this as I wanted them to have input with it being a gift from them. They chose some of their favourite photographs and also added a couple of embellishments. My daughter Emma who is 10 took control of the design process and working together with her two brothers they completed the mug design in less than ten minutes. We also wanted to purchase something for my husband's desk in work and so the kids then also completed the Personalised Table Top Panel which they thought he would really like. I made sure I was on hand in case my daughter had any difficulties but the process was simple enough for her and so she simply shouted me over as soon as they were ready for us to complete our purchase.

Purchase & Delivery

I registered our account so that our photos would be stored for future use and so that we could also monitor the progress of our items. The total bill for 2 x mugs and 1 x table-top panel came to £25.97 excluding delivery which I feel is excellent value for personalised gifts.

I placed the order on Sunday 21st May and immediately received an order confirmation via email. Only three days later on the Wednesday 24th May, I received a further email confirming that the items had been dispatched. This was far quicker than I was expecting and the following day I received the first of my items. I had expected the products to all be delivered together, however they did all arrive separately.

The first to arrive was the Personalised Table-Top Panel which was quickly followed the next day by the delivery of both of my mugs. I was very pleased with the prompt delivery and everything arrived perfect and undamaged.

The Products

I was absolutely delighted with all the products we had ordered. I wasn't expecting the quality to be as great as it was, so this was a wonderful surprise. All the images were perfectly clear and not blurry at all.

For my dad's mug I had chosen some of his favourite photos from the past including his wedding day and I feel that the design I had created was just perfect. The mugs are 11oz and suitable for tea, coffee and other hot drinks. They are dishwasher and microwave safe, and Snapfish recommend using a mild detergent in order to keep the photographs bright.

This product can be found here: Personalised Father's Day Gifts - White Coffee Mug 11oz




My husband's mug featured a selection of my children's favourite images and again we were really impressed with the outcome. The mugs can be customised with photo's, embellishments and even text, so you can get really creative with your design. My kids really enjoyed being able to do this together and didn't have any problems at all. However I noticed that there was a large help section should we have ran into any difficulty.

This product can be found here: Personalised Father's Day Gifts - White Coffee Mug 11oz




The Table-Top Panel had a high gloss finish and also featured a UV-resistant, scratch free coating and measured 7 x 5 inches. I noticed it was also available in larger sizes should you require your gift to be larger. The photo's were printed directly onto the wood and it had a great easel back feature which means it is easy to display on a shelf, table-top or desk in either portrait or landscape.

This product can be found here: Personalised Father's Day Gifts - 7x5 Wooden Table-Top Panel





Overall

Overall we really enjoyed using the Snapfish website. The whole process from designing the item to actually receiving the products was really simple and it is definitely a service that we will continue to use going forwards.

There are so many possibilities with the products and it is also really fun being able to be involved with designing your own gift.

If you would like to view the full range of Father's Day Gift's, then these can be found here:

Personalised Father's Day Gifts

I will also update this blog post after Father's Day to let you know exactly what the gift recipients thought!

Disclaimer: We were provided with a voucher code of £25 credit for the purpose of reviewing the website and it's products and providing an honest review of the service. All opinions are my own unless otherwise stated.