25 SLEEPS

Oh my goodness, Christmas is well and truly on it’s way!

Everything from a grease-stained Christmas pudding recipe from your grandma’s cupboard, an old stocking handed down through the family and that sad looking angel you’ve had since you were five screams Christmas tradition, and it’s these things that make Christmas so incredibly special.

The excitement can officially start now there’s just 25 sleeps to go!

screen-shot-2016-11-30-at-08-26-02Obviously, we’re full of festive spirit 365 days a year, but if you need some encouragement to get in the spirit of things, it’s worth remembering all those precious moments that make your Christmas fabulous. It’s the times that are stained on your memory, that you will pass down to future generations that make Christmas all the more exciting.

At Pines and Needles we’re here to help you with the lot – your one-stop-shop for all things Christmas.

Browse, be inspired, join the party!

Visit our stores on the 4th December to celebrate National Cookie Day

Get a cookie while you shop!

Keeping the little ones entertained this Christmas

It’s always a difficult task. The little ones are off school, you have a million things to do but want to make sure you make the most of the festive season with the family. We’ve compiled a list of the best things to do in London for Christmas this year – and every one of them is catered to your kids! Enjoy…

Winter Wonderland

Not just a Christmas Market, Winter Wonderland at Hyde Park is filled with Christmas activities including a giant ferris wheel, circus shows and a trip to Santa’s house! It’s also filled with restaurants and bars to keep the adults happy… a perfect way to spend an afternoon.

Kew Gardens

The botanical gardens turn into a Christmas wonderland. The whole gardens are lit up, with a vintage carousel, Santa’s grotto and huge Christmas trees provided by us! It’s definitely worth a trip to get you in the Christmas spirit.

Somerset House Ice Rink

The Fortnum and Mason ice rink has something for adults and children! Pop your skates on for the ultimate in icy fun, or sit and watch with a huge hot chocolate!

The Enchanted Christmas House

Take a trip through a winter wonderland, starting with a Christmas garden and leading into the elves workshop, the gingerbread kitchen, the Genies Christmas cave and finish in Santa’s grotto!

Huskey & Donkey Rides

When visiting the Wetland Centre, the little ones can have a free huskey or donkey ride to get them in the Christmas spirit! You can also meet Santa, and his elves!

Black Firday

Looking to get Christmas in the bag this Black Friday? We’ve got you covered! We’ve planned a huge offer for you all, meaning that you get over £100 off our full decoration service!

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We love to share our offers with everyone. Looking for a little tree for your living room? We have 10% off when you spend £100! Just use code BF10.

After something a little more extravagant? If you spend over £200 we’re giving you a cracking 20% off when you use code BF20.

Feeling super-festive? If you spend just £300 on our website, we’re handing you 30% off with the code BF30.

We’ve got your back. Christmas tree? It’s in the van!

“Silent Night, Holy Night…”

Christmas carols are the epitome of Christmas, and when you live in London you’re never far from a sing-a-long! Here’s a list of what’s going on when this year so you can join in.

The Place2Be Christmas Carol Service

Tuesday 29th November, St Lukes Chelsea.

Carols in aid of the Place2Be Charity, but make sure you book!

Eltham Palace Carol Concert

Wednesday 7th December Eltham Palace Eltham

Alternative Christmas Carols

Tuesday 13th December, Granary Square Kings Cross

Now get practising your words and we’ll see you in the crowd!

Top 5 London Christmas Markets

Christmas in Leicester Square

11th November – 8th January

Incorporating a Grotto and traditional Christmas markets Christmas in Leister Square will be the ultimate festive activity.

Southbank Centre Christmas Market

11th November – 25th January

Nothing says London like a Christmas Market alongside the Thames. Embrace the festive spirit, pop on your winter warmers and have a wander!

The Tate Modern

The Tate will be completely covered in tasteful decorations, and surrounded by wooden chalets filled with unique Christmas gifts.

Winter Wonderland

18th November – 2nd January

The long-awaited Winter Wonderland is back in business! Takikng over Hyde Park is the ultimate in festive, feel good activities. From a trip to the ice bar, an observation wheel and even the nutcracker on ice!

Greenwich Christmas Moonlight Market

16th December 10am – 11pm

Take a trip to Greenwich to enjoy the beautiful market, and even add in an extra trip to our Greenwich store to choose your tree.

Food for Thought

We know Christmas. From the perfect tree right to the perfect decorations, we live and breathe the festive season all year round. One of our favourite parts of the holiday (excluding the trees of course!) is the array of themed food that makes it’s way onto our shelves. Those favourite ‘red-cups’ sneak into the stores, and the flavours start to adapt a Christmas blend.

Ad it’s not just coffee. From burgers to ice cream, festivities show themselves everywhere, and we’re counting down our favourites!

Burgers

Nando’s have added cranberry to their standard chicken burger as a festive treat! Even KFC have entered the realms of festive food and created a limited edition burger. If you live in London, there’s a sea of burger restaurants dipping their toes in the trend!

Coffee

The long awaited Gingerbread latte is back in business at Starbucks! Alongside a toffee nut latte and some incredible sounding hot chocolates, and all served in a festive red cup to get you in the mood.

Costa have bought a little bit of Christmas Jumper magic to their cups this year. Filled with flavours such as Salted Caramel Cappuccino and even a Lindt hot chocolate, they’re sure to get your feeling festive.

Supermarkets

M&S have upped their game this year, from bucks fizz flavoured chips, to wreath shaped blocks of cheese and three bird sausage rolls they’ve gone all out this year! This isn’t just a Christmas…

Afternoon Tea

Our friends over the The Resident (LINK) have put together a fab list of London’s top Christmas themed afternoon teas, ranging from The Ritz to The Lanesborough!

http://www.theresident.co.uk/food-drink-london/top-places-christmas-afternoon-tea/

Looking for something a little bit unique? Not On The High Street have the best selection of Christmas food, ranging from alcoholic mulled wine humbugs to a Christmas dinner in a match box, it’s perfect for this time of year!

If you live in London, check out this list of the best Christmas restaurant menus!

http://www.hot-dinners.com/Features/Hot-Dinners-recommends/london-s-best-2016-christmas-food-specials-sandwiches-burgers-and-lots-more

Crackers for Christmas

No Christmas table is complete without the addition of some legendary crackers, and it was the one and only Tom Smith who bought them to us back in 1847.

Taking a bit of inspiration from the Bon Bon, and a lot of inspiration from Paris, crackers started out with a twisted end, filled with a love note and a sugared almond. Smith then developed these into the toy-filled crackers we know and love today!

There’s nothing like the bang of a cracker to start a party, and Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without having to clean up paper hats for days.

At Pines and Needles we value the history of products, as well as the quality. This is why Tom Smith is our main crackers supplier. We don’t just love his crackers, we love his story too!

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You know the drill…

https://www.pinesandneedles.com/style-edit/crackers-about-christmas

 

Mistle-toes

Babies. We love them. We want to squish them. We usually can’t wait to give them back to their parents.

Christmas is a time when the little ones take centre stage, and here at Pines & Needles we LOVE to encourage the cuteness!

First Christmases are such a big deal. They’re also a honeypot for the new parent who wants to buy anything and everything to celebrate – from baubles and gift bags to rompers and socks, baby’s first Christmas will never be forgotten.

We all know too well that babies won’t remember the day, but as parents we love to treat our pride and joy to a first Christmas that the family will always remember.

Christmas is so magical, and as adults we love to remind ourselves about the excitement we used to feel as a child, although here at Pines and Needles we’re always excited about Christmas!

We’ve bottled a little bit of that excitement and we’re sharing it with you in the form of some super advice on making the big day a success!

THE OUTFIT

Realistically, it’s probably already hanging up in their wardrobe, crying out to be worn! There’s nothing like a beautiful dress or a cute suit on the big day, but remember a change of outfit will probably be needed – all the more reason to buy another one!

TRADITIONS

Having children around will make you feel so much more nostalgic. Always remember family is family, arguments will happen, but at the end of the evening you’ll all be laughing at Auntie Jo’s inability to handle her alcohol!

PRESENTS

In October you’ll promise that you won’t spend any of your hard earned money on the little one. After all, they can’t even open the presents without A LOT of help. By November you’ll have already amassed enough goodies to fill Santa’s grotto, so maybe just live with it. You may not have any money to spend on anyone else, or each other, but just look at that chubby face in its reindeer hat!

TREE

Christmas trees are our speciality, of course. But with little people roaming around where you put the tree is always going to be a tricky choice. From not wanting them to pull it down, to where in fact you have room due to the large volume of baby ‘stuff’ that inevitably fills up the house, it’s a difficult decision to make. We can help. Putting your tree somewhere you can always see it is a great idea, it means that if your little one crawls anywhere near it you’ll be there to make sure it doesn’t fall.  We advise that you always keep your tree on the floor for stability, but if you don’t have enough room you can always go for something smaller. Remember, it doesn’t have to fit the whole room to be beautiful!

 

Our Stores are Popping Up Soon!

With the release of the John Lewis advert and the Starbucks ‘red cups’ today, we thought it was a great time to let you know that our stores are on the way!

Just for good measure, incase you haven’t seen it – meet Buster the Boxer!

Moving on, (and please forgive the analogy) Christmas can feel a little bit like Brexit. Or after this week, the dreaded President Elect Trump, but we’re keeping it festive and not talking about that! On one side you have people who are completely opposed to the idea of Christmas before the thick of December, while on the other you have faithful fans of the festivities who think Christmas can’t come soon enough. Even in November.

Those who shudder are ridiculed as Scrooges, those who embrace Christmas are considered loons. No one wins. Hence Brexit.

We like to think our Pop Up Stores – 30 of them across London and the South East – give people the chance to take Christmas at their own pace. Our log cabins, many situated in the Royal parks, are a yuletide refuge. You may not want to buy your trees just yet (unless you’re tasked with sorting the office Christmas party) but we’ve got all manner of goodies on offer to get you in the festive spirit.

Lights, decorations, table runners, gift wrap – we’ve got the lot.

So make sure you pay us a visit, wherever you are. It’s great fun for all the family and will get you away from the hustle and bustle of the High Street. We’d all vote for that!

 

Start the festive season with a bang!

Bonfire night starts the countdown to Christmas, and we couldn’t be more excited! So we’ve rounded up our favourite spots to catch some beautiful fireworks and start the festive season with a bang!

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NORTH LONDON

Alexandra Place – Friday 4th November

Harrow – Saturday 5th November

Finchley – Saturday 5th November

SOUTH LONDON

Battersea – Saturday 5th November

Southwalk – Saturday 5th November

EAST LONDON

Newham – Saturday 5th November

Guy Fawkes at the Royal Gunpowder Mills – Sunday 6th November

Victoria Park – GreatFire of London Fireworks – Sunday 6th November

WEST LONDON

Richmond – Sunday 6th November

Bonfire Night @ The Roof Gardens – Saturday 5th November

THE REST OF THE UK!

Edinburgh – Saturday 5th November

Sparks in the Park, Cardiff – Saturday 5th November

Heaton Park, Manchester – Saturday 5th November

Legoland – Saturday 5th November