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A year that small businesses need us to support them more than ever …

Well what a year it has been for the human race! I am not going to discuss that too much but if you, like me, feel that you would like to support small businesses this Christmas, rather than doing all of your shopping on Amazon – then I have some tips for you for some unique gift ideas from business that I have tried, tested and genuinely love.

These are all genuine recommendations. I was not approached to include any of them in this article and I am not an affiliate – or in any way receiving commission from any of these businesses for including them.

Personality Prints

These are adorable, fun, bright and cheery, totally gorgeous and fabulously personalised prints for all the family. I had one done of my daughter and her best friends when she finished Year 6 last summer and I was delighted with the owner Rachel’s service. No detail was too fussy or small, nothing was too much trouble. The prints arrived stunningly wrapped and were done in a very high quality print. Featured in Tatler magazine – so if it’s good enough for them you know it’s a top quality product on service. That’s not to say the prints are outrageously priced though – far from it. They are excellent value, for the highly personalised care that goes into them.

Don’t just take my word for it – go check out the products here and prepare to gush over the cuteness and beauty of Rachel’s range: Personalised prints and gifts for all by PersonalityPrintsLtd (etsy.com)

Orange Chat Hair & Beauty

My daughter and I were treated to a fabulous pampering afternoon at the Orange Chat salon in Northfields, Ealing, a few weekends before lockdown began (so please note the images included are pre-restrictions and hence no masks etc). Run by the mega talented Amber, Orange Chat offers an expansive range of hair and beauty services including hair cutting & styling, colouring, extensions, hair loss treatments, beauty treatments (waxing, threading, manicures, tinting, spray tan and ear piercing. Aside from this if you are taking your child along they provide children’s hair cuts from £13, children’s wash and cut from £15 or a children’s wash and blowdry for £25. If you are taking your child for his/ her first hair cut then you can get that with a certificate to remember it by for just £15.

It’s a fantastic, luxurious and professional service so why not treat someone special to some Orange Chat Gift Vouchers for Christmas. To purchase Orange Chat gift vouchers, enquire via their website (I think I will treat myself very soon!) Orange Chat Hair Salon – Cutting, styling, colouring & more

Note the cover/ gallery image for this blog features the pink Nailpad – another great Christmas gift idea, run by two sisters, one of whom lives in Ealing. home | Nailpad ltd

mother and daughter showing nails

A gift of performing arts classes for your little stars

I keep hearing that experiences are going to be IN this year for Christmas over material gifts for both children and adults and let’s face it we parents want to do all we can next year to help make up for the strange turn that our children’s lives took in 2020. Various children’s activity providers are offering gift voucher. Two that come to mind that I love are my daughter’s fabulous drama school Masquerade Theatre Arts which runs in both Hanwell, Ealing and in Kingston – and then also the Acton based street dance company Elevate arts.

Could be a great present idea from aunties and grandparents who have no idea what to buy and if your family finances are a bit stretched this year like so many people’s are, then this could be a great way of ensuring your child is still able to carry on doing what they love.

Masquerade Theatre Arts (masqueradearts.com)
amber orange chat – Bing (elevateartsuk.co.uk)

Not forgetting your fur babies …Well as you might know if you follow @westlondonkids on Instagram, we got a puppy during lockdown. An adorable ball of Cavapoo fluff called Oreo. I’m not going to deny it – he will be spoilt this week. Having been gifted with a hamper back in the summer full of dog goodies from All Things Dogs by Andrea – blankets, balls, treats and other toys – I’ve indulged in some Christmas hamper to spoil the little fella who has brought so many more smiles and laughter to our family in 2020 than we would have had without him. Treat your dog to a gift hamper from All Things Dogs – it will delight! They are yet to get a website but if you visit their Facebook page or @allthingsdogsuk on Instagram, you will see the goodies on offer and you can get in touch with Andrea by DM. It’s a quick and efficient service and I think it’s excellent value for money.
All Things Dogs | Facebook

Instead of making Amazon EVEN richer, buy your books from a local indie store or Usborne bookseller

One things I do definitely spoil my children with is books. I just can’t resist them. Particularly Usborne books. The topics, the titles, the illustrations, the covers – just everything about them. Think we have nearly the whole range! Anyway – I know a few mums trying to make some extra money alongside caring for their children who have set up as Usborne sellers and it’s a wonderful service. For those of in Ealing , you might know Bea who is an Usborne seller and packages the book bundles beautifully. Check out her sellers’ page here: Mamma Bea London (usborne.com)

Anyway – that’s just some of the tips I have but I’d love to hear yours when I do a post about this article on the West London Kids Facebook and Instagram pages.