Since becoming an old and boring person, one of my favourite things to do of a weekend is to go to retail parks to look at homewares. It’s genuinely exciting for me. One of my all time favourite shops (yep, even before Topshop) is HomeSense. If you’re not familiar with the joys of HomeSense, it’s part of the TK Maxx family, and for me, offers all the best bits – homewares, stationery and gifts.
So when the opportunity came up to visit the Bristol Imperial Park store to explore their new Christmas range I pretty much jumped at the chance. Bloggers were given ‘Love From First Find’ labels to hang on our favourite items and a gift voucher for any ‘can’t leave without it’ items. I did love a lot, so warning, this is a picture heavy post – apologies for any slow loading.
One of the best things about HomeSense (other than the 60% of RRP of course) is that they pretty much cover all trends. So whether you going for rustic wood, a splash of bling or on-trend copper, they’ll have you covered.
Both owls and squirrels are a big feature this year. The felted wool pom poms are a great alternative to tinsel if you’re going for a homespun look to your Christmas decorations.
I thought these chalkboard style decorations were really unusual and would be terrific for anyone who likes a monochrome look. This this the flat reindeer baubles would actually be great on the table – you could attach a name tag to the hook and make it into a nameplace/gift for all of your guests.
There is lots of choice for copper fans as the big trend of 2015. I really liked the totally of the wall copper studded hearts, robins and (bizarrely) poodles! But there was also an abundance of more classic items such as reindeers, dishes, bells and ornaments.
They also have all the classics covered such as sparkling silver and white with nutcracker figurines, snowglobes and Christmas angels, glittering gold paired with red berries and evergreens, and adorable penguins for that frosty North Pole feeling (even though penguins only live in the Southern hemisphere – sorry, can’t help it!).
I did pick a few things out for myself, starting with the polar bear topped sweet jar (£4.99*). He is so lovely, I might have to keep him out all year round. And I had to buy one of the stocking hooks. I mean it literally has my name on it! It was £7.99* and has a good weight to it. Can’t wait to see my presents hanging from it on Christmas morning!
I also have a cautionary tale about shopping in HomeSense. If you see something you love, buy it! It might not be there next time. I didn’t buy this moose head because I was worried that the other half would hate it (when has that ever bothered me at all?!) and one of the antlers was a bit broken. In hindsight, I could have easily fixed the antler, I don’t really care what David thinks, and he’s the closest thing I’ve seen to a bejewelled moose head I pinned 3 years ago. Major regrets right here. I hope he went to a good home *cries*. If it is love from first find’ as the campaign goes, make sure you buy it.
Other Christmas homeware essentials are covered with plenty of cosy throws, festive candles, tableware, and modern soft furnishings. I also really rate the selection of crackers – as random as that seems, but they had some really nice options with stuff you would actually uses such as these cookie cutter ones and I also saw a giant cracker stuffed with photo booth props. So fun!
Another top tip for shopping at HomeSense – make sure you have a good root around, especially if you’re there towards the middle and end of the day. As you can see from the candles, the shelves are packed with all sorts of different items and are not always in groups, so it’s well worth hunkering down and moving things to see what it at the back. You never know what gems you might discover.
Make sure you also check out the stationery and gift sections. HomeSense and TK Maxx are my favourite places to get notebooks because they get lots of US brands no one else stocks. I am in love with the notebook pictured – soft grey, copper foiling, motivational quote, Oprah… what more do you want?! And it’s a fab place for cards, wrap and gift boxes.
Finally, the star of the show. A Christmas. Unicorn. With glittery fur. Perfection.
Have you experienced ‘Love from First Find’ at Homesense? How are you decorating for Christmas this year?