Easter eggs, egg decoration and Easter egg hunts are all integral to our Easter traditions – but why is that?
Well, the egg is an ancient symbol of fertility and rebirth and the tradition of decorating eggs is also ancient – a 60,000 years old decorated and engraved ostrich egg was discovered in Africa!
Eggs were often boiled with natural ingredients to turn them different colours – boiling with walnut shells can turn the eggs black, tree bark can turn them black or golden, and beetroot turns them red. In Greece, one of the oldest traditions of Easter is to dye eggs red.
A batik-like technique is used to decorate eggs in Central Europe, such as the Ukrainian pysanka and the Polish pisanka eggs.
But the fanciest (and probably most expensive!) eggs were those created by Fabergé for the Russian Tsars as gifts for their wives and mothers.
Egg ‘tapping’ is another a common eggy tradition, where 2 eggs are tapped together and the winner is the person with the last egg to break. In Greece this is called tsougrisma, in Switzerland it’s Ostereiertitschen, in the Netherlands it’s called eiertikken and in the north of England the tradition is called ‘egg jarping’ or ‘egg dumping’.
A few more eggy facts:
At eatsleepdoodle we love a good Easter Egg Hunt and we usually plan it out in advance on our tablecloth!
If your kids love reading about prehistoric eggs (and what kid doesn't?) then why not treat them to a Colour & Learn Dinosaur pillowcase? Lots of dinosaurs were hatched out of eggs - like the amazing Oviraptors.
The Oviraptor was initially thought to have been an egg thief - that's what its name means - as its fossils were discovered on top of the remains of prehistoric eggs! It turns out those were probably its own eggs that it had been sitting on when it died in its nest!
You can find out more about some of the dinosaurs featured in our eatsleepdoodle Colour & Learn range here.
Dads – are you looking for Mother’s Day gifts on behalf of the kids?
You don’t want to let the kids down, or mum – they’re all going to want something a bit special and a bit unique, just like mum. And your kids.
Quite a responsibility.
How about something the kids can write their own message on – like the doodle MUG?
The mug comes with a wash-off marker pen and you know what that means – awkward mis-spellings or unwanted splodges simply get washed off. The kids can start again as many times as they need to, till they get their message or drawing just perfect.
And if you don’t scrub it, their special doodle will stay on the mug just long enough for everyone to enjoy it – then just wash it off and write a new one.
You never know – it may even appear again for Father’s Day!
If you’re anything like us, you can’t really be doing with all the Halloween hullaballoo. Just another meaningless, over-commercialised festival isn’t it?
(First published 2014)
Well hold on – didn’t most Halloween traditions originate in Britain?
Bonfires were part of the 2000-year old Celtic end-of-summer festival called Samhain, celebrated on 31 October. Samhain had plenty of supernatural associations and folk wore costumes to ward off roaming spirits and ghosts.
Over the centuries the Christian festival of All Saints Day, celebrated on 1 November, adopted some of the traditions of Samhain, and the evening before became All Hallows Eve – eventually Halloween. A-ha.
In Medieval Britain, children and the poor would go door-to-door ‘souling’ – getting food in return for prayers for the dead – the origin of trick-or-treating. Later, they carried carved turnip lanterns to ward off the dead – or to play tricks on those with a weak disposition. Naughty naughty. Irish immigrants then took the tradition to America where turnips were replaced by pumpkins.
So, maybe we should be reclaiming and celebrating our heritage?
Well either way, carving pumpkins isn’t all about spending money. It’s about spending creative time together making cool lanterns and great memories.
We like to doodle our pumpkin designs in advance – you can try out different doodley faces, cats, bats or even the doodle-undead. Just doodle it freestyle, then pick your favourite designs and get 3-D with a pumpkin.
If you did want to buy something special for a Halloween party (oh yes, here’s the commercial!) you might try the doodle tablecloth. It's great for doodling ghoulish designs, with bags of room for all your friends and family to get spook-creative together.
The doodle tablecloth comes with a set of 10 double-ended doodle wash-out pens – perfect for designing your creepy pumpkin carvings or for customising the spine-chilling Halloween dinner table. Don't fancy a tablecloth? Try doodle placemats.
And after the party, nothing goes in the bin – just chuck your doodle ghosts in the (washing) machine and the ink will all wash out. Completely. 100%. (Unlike some poor imitations which can leave a ghost behind!)
No tricks – just treats.
But do watch out for wandering spirits. And wandering mixers. (Ice and a slice with that?)
There’s a really interesting article in HighSnobiety on the emergence of doodling in fashion.
It talks about the long-time link between fashion and self-expression, and the well-established custom of personalising jeans, footwear, jackets etc with patches and other decoration – but now musicians, artists and individuals are increasingly customising their stuff with doodling.
Strongly influenced by art - including the 1980’s work of graffiti-inspired New York artist Jean-Michel Basquiat (above top) and more recently Wes Lang’s tattoo-inspired collages (above below) – designers such as Raf Simons and Maison Margeila have brought graffiti-like doodles on clothing to the catwalk and store front (below).
Kanye West and A$AP Rocky have appeared wearing one-off pieces customised with doodles and customised, doodled sneakers are almost commonplace.
The article concludes, ‘These informally drawn DIY pictorials occupy an interesting place in the social zeitgeist, and hearkening back to cave man drawings or even Leonardo da Vinci’s famous sketchbooks, these spontaneous doodles are not just an abstract way of communicating or leaving a message, but also a way to self-soothe and externalize our unconscious musings…
… these frenetic doodles have resonated in the fashion community, and could tie in with fashion’s current obsession with Rock’n’Roll aesthetics. In a world where we yearn after exclusive products to set ourselves apart, doodling is a stamp of originality that we can create ourselves at no cost.’
So is it time to start doodling your wardobe? Rock 'n' Roll - doodle on!
Read the full article here.
OK so you’re on your hols in the caravan/tent/chalet/apartment and it’s just started raining. The kids are stuck indoors, getting bored and tetchy…familiar?
Time to reach for your secret weapon – the new colour and learn pillowcases from eatsleepdoodle.
Test their knowledge by getting them to write the dinosaur names in the spaces beneath; stimulate their imaginations by encouraging them to tell the story of this lost world, inhabited by scary dinosaurs, where a group of scientists and their families have just crashed. If you’ve got wifi, let them learn interesting stuff about the dinos on our fact-filled dino resource page.
Or let them take epic daydream journeys, exploring the 7 modern day wonders of the world and discovering wild animals, exotic sea creatures and heaps of fun facts about every country they visit, with lots more to explore on the web resource page.
Don’t forget to capture their creative journeys in photos and share them with us on social media by using the hashtag #eatsleepdoodle. We’ll be keeping an eye out!
With Father’s Day rapidly approaching, our thoughts go to all things dad. You know he won’t thank you for more socks, and chocs are just too predictable. This is your DAD - you need to think creatively!
This is where eatsleepdoodle step in – doodle textile products make really original, totally personal – and personalised - father’s day gifts.
If your dad loves to mess about in the kitchen, what about a doodle apron? You can personalise it before you wrap it up, with special messages or cool designs. Pens are included, so you’re all ready for action.
Perfect for Father’s Day and a summer of BBQ’s!
(And don't forget to share your best dad doodles with us on social media.)
We’re delighted to share news that the new doodle Monet placemat set has just won the NY NOW Best New Gift Product Award. NY NOW is the premier trade show for the home, lifestyle, and gift market in the USA.
Announced yesterday, 1st February 2016, this new award is judged by a panel of media and industry experts in order to ‘recognise and celebrate exceptional offerings from exhibitors across the market’.
The placemat design is inspired by Monet’s great Impressionist paintings of the Japanese-style bridge and water-lily pond that he created at his home in Giverny. These were the subject of about 250 of his paintings – capturing them at different times of day and in changing lights and seasons.
Now anyone can doodle and colour in their own mini-Monet on the printed cotton placemats, using the enclosed wash-out fabric pens – and because the ink washes out completely in the machine, you can create as many versions as you like.
Kate Barker, eatsleepdoodle’s Brand & Marketing Director who created the concept and the Monet doodle, said ‘We’re genuinely thrilled to have won this award and to be flying the flag for great British design. We’re lucky enough to work with some of the great American and European museums and galleries, as well as a whole host of wonderfully creative retailers, and this really keeps us inspired and determined to bring new ideas to the market.’
eatsleepdoodle Founder and CEO, Chrissie Probert Jones added ‘Monet’s paintings are perennial favourites with the public – perhaps because they’re both beautiful and accessible – and we wanted to use that relationship we have with his work as a way of inspiring people of all ages to enjoy the simple pleasures of colouring, doodling and creating. The great thing about the eatsleepdoodle experience is you don’t have to worry about the end result – just have some fun and, if you don’t like your doodle, simply wash it out and start again!’
eatsleepdoodle gifts are stocked by lots of local, national and international museum and gallery shops, because they’re great for encouraging creativity.
And that got us thinking…WWMD? (What Would Monet Doodle?)
Monet, of course, is famous for his Impressionist paintings and especially his paintings of water-lilies and the Japanese-style bridge and lily pond that he created at his home in Giverny. These were the subject of about 250 of his paintings – capturing them at different times of day and in changing lights and seasons.
So we figured…if we can make a Monet pond placemat, then you can doodle it, draw it, and colour it however you want to. And if you use the wash-out fabric pens that come in every pack, the ink all washes out in the machine so you can create as many versions as you like.
So…first Impressions don’t always count!
Find out more about the doodle Monet placemat set here and check out the video of us trying to make a good Impression below!
We were inspired by some lovely vintage Christmas cards to doodle our Christmas greetings this year.
Try your own - it all comes out in the wash after Christmas! - and don't forget to share #eatsleepdoodle