The V Family Reviews Stationery And Interviews Independent Phoenix Trader Laura Clarke
As you probably all know by now, I'm a bit of a stationery addict. So when I was contacted by the lovely Laura, who is an Independent Phoenix Trader, and asked to try out some of her products I just couldn't resist.
When this gorgeous parcel dropped through my letterbox, my day was officially made!
The first thing I unpacked were the gorgeous cards (Birthday Beers, Pink Butterfly, Pie and Lattes and Daisy Cake). They were all made with good quality card and were eye-catching in their own unique way. Mine and N's favourite was the butterfly card, not only is it really different but it's also pretty and sparkly (the best kind of combination in our world).
Each Phoenix card costs £1.75 unless you buy 10 or more, then they are just £1.40 each!
Next came my own personal life-saver, the Family Organiser. I pretty much run our whole lives on our organiser and at just £5.50 this has to be the cheapest I've seen!
Each organiser pad has 52 sheets of paper, one for each week of the year. There are spaces for five names at the top and you simply write each family member's appointments/jobs/things to remember in the box on the relevant day. At the end of the week (and when everything has been satisfyingly crossed off) you can tear the top sheet off and start a fresh one for the next week.
The absolute best part of this particular organiser is that it has magnetic strips on the back so it can be kept on the fridge and will save lots of space on my desk!
As soon as N spotted the Secret Agent Pack she couldn't wait to get it open so she could write some secret letters. She was a little disappointed though because the writing didn't show up as much as she would have liked but it still kept her quiet as she sat doing her invisible writing and attaching the stickers (I'd love to know what she wrote but apparently it's a secret)!
The pack costs just £3.75 and contains 3 sheets of A5 notepaper, 3 matching envelopes, 12 stickers and a magic ink pen which has a light at the end to enable you to read your secret messages.
I've left the most popular item until last, the Colour-in Butterfly Tea Party Tablecloth. I haven't ever seen anything like this before and I absolutely love the idea! We cleared the table and both T and N got straight down to colouring it in. This surprised me because T grew out of colouring-in a long time ago but it seems he just couldn't resist the giant colouring sheet spread out on our table.
We decided that when it was completed we would use it as a giant poster for E's bedroom and maybe that was why T took such an interest - he'll do anything for his baby sister!
This would also make a great party activity and at just £6 each, you really can't go wrong.
Laura also sent a copy of the catalogue which I've looked through so many times since it arrived - it's kind of like a stationery addicts bible, there are just so many lovely things in there!
There was also other information about becoming an Independent Phoenix Trader (contact Laura for information) and even about how Phoenix Traders raise money for charities through their fundraising scheme. Visit www.phoenixinternationalcharity.org for more details.
Overall we were impressed with the quality of the items and also the prices. I think it's definitely worth taking a look in Laura's online store if you're in need of cards/stationery and want something a little bit different.
Well, it’s kinda a funny story. I had just been made redundant and was out for a drive in the countryside with my friend Angelina. She had this postcard on her dashboard about Phoenix and handed it to me, without saying anything. I hadn’t heard of Phoenix before, but knew she bought a whole bunch of cards, gift wrap, gifts, gift tags etc from a lady her Mum knows, so I asked her if this was the company who her Mums friend was a Trader for, to which she said YES!
Angelina knows I love stationery so it was right up my street. I came home and did some research and saw the special join now offer on the website for £75 – so went for it! At the very worst, I got £250 worth of cards and other stationery goodies for £75 – if it becomes a successful little business – then all the better.
When you join up you say which Trader you heard about Phoenix through, and so I put Alison’s name down – having never met her! So she was most surprised to see I had joined her team and we had a good laugh on the phone about how I had heard about Phoenix, and in turn, her!
Alison, and all the local Traders I know, are such a lovely bunch of ladies, from all walks of life and we all went to a Trade Show in Warrington a few weeks ago to see the Christmas range launch, which was a really fun day out #ChristmasInJuly.
Why do you love the products?
What drew me to join up to be a Trader was mainly because all the designs are by British artists and all the products are printed in England! Each artist has his / her own unique style so there is something for every taste. They also do a great selection of cards for the male loved ones in your life, which I am hearing over and over again is very rare to find.
Is there anything that makes your online store different/unique?
Any products on my online store can’t be found on the High Street. As Independent Phoenix Traders, each of us is self-employed and we are your only root to buying the products.
At £14 for 10 cards, we are incredibly good value for money and the quality can not be beaten on the High Street.
Throughout the year, there are new brochures released, so the range is always kept fresh and up to date with current trends.
Tell us a bit about your stationery obsession...
I have indeed always had a love for stationery! As far back as I can remember, wherever my parents or grandparents or school took me, I would always enjoy the gift shop the most, buying a bookmark, rubber, badge, pen / pencil and more at every tourist attraction possible! I have quite the collection. Hard Rock Café badges across the world were also favourite items to collect.
Then about Sixth Form / University time this changed to notebooks. I still literally can not resist buying a notebook if it catches my eye. With greetings cards, I have always brought these as and when I have seen them, even if I did not know at the time who would be the lucky one to receive it! Phoenix has obviously added to my collection and all my neighbours know where to come if they need a late minute emergency card!
Recently I have discovered washi tape, Project Life, journaling, Ban.do planners, smash booking and all those glorious terms that a few weeks ago I didn’t even know about so, my stationery collection is about to expand and I have been making space in my studio this weekend for the goodies arriving in the week!
You can visit my online store here: www.phoenix-trading.co.uk/web/lauraclarke
Think cards, think Clarke!
We received these products for review purposes. I am always honest in my reviews and all opinions are my own or that of my family.