Sunday, 28 December 2008

Tree Silhouettes without the winter chill

Landsby small birchwood tray £15 and Bird big birchwood tray £25 as featured in Grand Design magazine.

ISAK - Grand Design top website

We are very pleased that Grand Designs Magazine (January 2009) has nominated as one of its favourite websites for finding the perfect gift.

We are happy to be included with some other of our favourites including;,,, and

We also think Kevin is doing a great job promoting design in architecture!

Tuesday, 23 December 2008

Beautiful Happy Christmas

Christmas is a time for love, peace and goodwill. However, it can be a time of stress and frustration. Here are our 10 tips for maintaining your sanity over Christmas and coming out of it feeling better, fitter and ready to embrace the New Year 2009.

1. Fresh Air. Take advantage of the kids waking up early. Let them open a present and then get the wellies on and go out for a 30min walk before breakfast. Don't let the weather be an excuse. There is no unsuitable weather, just unsuitable clothes.
2. Call someone. After breakfast, break out an old book of phone numbers and ring one of them. Family, friend, acquaitance, whoever. Don't aim to have a prolonged conversation, just give them a call, wish them Merry Christmas and let them know that you have been thinking of them and hope they are well. Then hang up and enjoy a coffee in the warm glow.
3. Do something constructive. Gather the throng together and tell them to go out and collect litter off your street for 30mins. Put gloves on provide bags and make a difference. You never know, a neighbour or two may join you.
4. Go knocking. Pick an address in your neighbourhood where you don't know the person living there. Pop round, introduce yourself and wish them a Merry Christmas. You could take over a flask of coffee, some chocolates or a card (homemade). Just a quick visit.
5. Turn off the TV. After dinner find a game and play it. Charades or Karioke are always good starters or break out a board game or a pack of cards. Grandparents vs Kids at Twister can always be entertaining!
6. Take some Time. This is the most valuable commodity over Christmas. You must take a 20min break for yourself. But it must be time for yourself. A quiet time. Time to think, consider, dream or if you can, switch off. The best medicine there is, 20 minutes of silence. Go out for a quick walk and find a bench (churches are good), sit in the car or garage. Lock yourself in the bathroom or spare room if you have one.
7. Dance. Put on your favourite music and let yourself go. Don't expect others to join in, but if you are uninhibited you will find they will. Have a bad dancing contest or a Daddy dancing contest. Act out a film or TV moment like Grease, Joseph or a Disney Classic.
8. Discuss/Question. Have a debate. Pick teams, select a subject and by the toss of a coin decide which team will be for and which team against the subject. It is a good idea to have a Chairperson to settle any points and calm any heated debates. Ask the children what they would like to debate. Subjects could be; Should children be allowed to vote? Is junk food ever good for you? Is it possible to be over-educated? Are cars a good thing? Is Father Christmas real?
9. Read. Dig out a pile of old books or get down to the library and take it in turns to read a passage from a book or a couple of verses of poetry. You can use magazines, newspapers or if you want to just talk about a topic you are interested in.

10. Tell all those you are sharing the day with that you love them. Take time during the day to approach everyone and let them know that you love them.

Don't worry if you can't do all 10 tips everyone helps a little bit. If you do manage all 10, then you will feel physically, mentally and emotionally rejuvenated. Have a wonderful Christmas time, we wish you all the Season's cheer from ISAK and an amazing New Year.

Tuesday, 16 December 2008

Thankyou Everybody!

We would just like to say a great big thankyou to everyone who has supported ISAK over the past year. We love designing and producing the ISAK range, but it wouldn't be possible without the help of so many others.

Thanks to all our suppliers for being so patient with our demands, thanks to all our retailers for believing in our products, thanks to all the customers for recognising our beautiful happy things and thanks to friends, family and all strangers who listened to our problems and offered advise.

Happy Christmas to you all!

Thursday, 11 December 2008

Make yourself happy

Everybody loves to sing. Everybody! Some, the brave or talented, do it openly for us all to enjoy. Others do it in secret, mostly in the car. We all have a tune in our heads, we all want to sing. Christmas time gives us a chance to indulge this joint passion.

Carol singing began in the Middle Ages and was performed by groups holding hands and dancing in a circle. It was done for the pure indulgence of enjoyment. Even though St Francis of Assissi (the animal saint) introduced it into formal church services, it was meant to be just the bishops who sang. They got all the fun! So the secular mob took it upon themselves to sing in the streets. The poor would perform door to door in return for a reward.

Oliver Cromwell banned carol singing in the 17th century, demanding that christmas be taken seriously. Hmmm.

So this year, let yourselves go, exploit your freedom to sing. Grab some friends, form a circle, dance and sing! You will feel much better and happier for it. You could even do it for a charity, such as Shelter or The Children's Society. Whatever excuse you find, just do it and be happy. Life is beautiful.

Blossom & Bill festive greeting cards in packs of 8 available from ISAK.

Sunday, 7 December 2008

Christmas Dinner Dining Table?

We all like a traditional Christmas Dinner with friends & family, a roaring log fire, merriment & laughter, served up on a grand, old, solid oak table.

However, I'm sure there are many of us who crave a slightly different approach to Christmas Dinner. Well here are our suggestions for alternative Christmas Dinner Tables. Sushi anyone?

The "Silent Whisper" will cut down on the clatter of Christmas, cheering everyone up with a little bit of peace. The high density core absorbs the impacts at the surface, keeps the sound in and releases it ever so quietly when no-one is listening.

Go industrial with Mathew Hilton's Cross Pedastool table or Styx coffee table for Classicon.

If you have to stay with some tradition then "Foxtrot" by Sarah Kay is constructed from interwoven solid oak and strikes a formidable pose for any get together.

Chairs stack, so why not tables? Thomas Heatherwick's Piggyback provides a lovely solution to those unexpected family members turning up on Christmas Day. When stacked they slide seamlessly into one.

A splash of colour is what we all need in the depths of a grey, anglo-winter and that is provided by a burst of Pallas sunshine. Pallas is a slender table to keep diners closer and encourage communication, also makes passing the gravy easier.

The N-7 is a provocative and edgy style monster, eat off it if you dare!

Babel is a table system that comprises stacks of birch disks. Christmas should involve some play.

If mediocre is not in your dictionary then Wendell Castle is for you. We would happily spend Christmas alone with one of these exquisite little beauties to dine off, but could you bring yourself to plop a plate ontop of it. No, we think it would be better to go hungry for a while...

Happy Christmas!

Tuesday, 2 December 2008

New ISAK Cups

For those of you patiently waiting for the new ISAK Leaf and Lovebird cups with oak lids. We are expecting delivery tomorrow and will be packing and sending as soon as we can thereafter. So they should be with you all by early next week at the latest. Sorry for the delays, the world seems to have slowed down lately!