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Myakka Blog

Indian furniture, Dining Table, Nest of Tables, Cushions and Accessories

Ethical and Green Getaways

Wednesday, 29 May 2013

Holiday time is often one of the most special times of year for the whole family. So to help make sure you choose a holiday that suits both you and the environment we have put a list together of our top ethical and green holidays from all around the world…

1.    California Cycling Holiday from San Francisco to Los Angeles
Take in some of the most scenic and famous part of the west coast of the USA. Cycle over the Golden Gate Bridge, through the Napa Valley and its wine estates and around some towering Redwood trees.

2.    Spirit of South India – Spice Gardens and Houseboats
Take a step of the beaten track and visit the spice gardens of Hulgol and visit sub tropical forests and spice plantations. From there you can take the overnight train to Kerala where you can meet the local villagers and stay in a traditional community managed house boats.

3.    Eco Cabin in Ireland
Take a ferry over to Ireland and opt to stay in one of the many eco-lodges. Ard Nahoo is a renowned eco lodge set in the picturesque village of Dromahair on the banks of the river Bonet. It is the perfect place to relax and unwind and can be reached easily by public transport.

4.    Organic Farm B&B in Exmoor, Devon
Stay in a self-catering cottage or enjoy B&B at this award winning organic farm. Based only 3 miles away from the sunny beaches of Minehead in Exmoor National Park it is the perfect place to holiday. Ducks and Chickens will greet you on your way into stay in one of the most beautiful parts of the UK.

5.    Eco Hotel in Turkey
Soak up the sun around the pool in a Turkish eco hotel. Enjoy home grown and local produce at the peaceful hotel located away from the busy resort of Olu Deniz. The lodge lives by the mantra of never taking without giving back.

6.    Wildlife Conservation Holidays in Inverness
Learn about gardening to support wildlife, venture into the forest and field with expert guides to find local wildlife. Head out to the coast and work with real marine biologists looking at seals. A real eco adventure perfect for all the family.

7.    Footsteps Eco Lodge in Gambia
Take a trip to the Beautiful Gambia and stay at the Footsteps Eco Lodge. Powered by the sun, this lodge offers traditional stays in huts, lodges and tens so you can find the perfect option for you. The swimming pool is filtered through reed beds which means chlorine never has to be used.

8.    Eco holiday in Lanzarote
Stay on the popular holiday island of Lanzarote but with a difference. Away from the main resorts and hotels, you can chose to stay in Yurts, barns and eco cottages (and more). All powered by solar panels, they offer something different to the typical Spanish holiday.

9.    Explore Machu Picchu and the ancient city of Cusco, Peru
One of the seven new wonders of the modern world, Machu Picchu is a sacred city, designed and built by the ancient Incas. Take the famous Inca trail and explore the city of Cusco and all it has it offer. Or explore the Andes or Amazon. Peru has a lot to offer

10.    Family Holiday in Southern Thailand
Take some time to relax on Thailand’s golden sands, explore Bangkok, visit the jungle and stay a night in a traditional fishing village. All with the knowledge that you are off the tourist beaten track, staying in hotels owned by locals and working with local tour guides.

Where ever you go for your holiday this year don’t forget the little things can make all the difference. Packing light can help save fuel and using electricity and air conditioning less really does help the environment. Flights are generally the worse thing about our holidays so where you can try and avoid it (Trains and ferries are a lot more environmentally friendly). If you do fly, make you use one of the many carbon off setting schemes available.

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Your perfect storage solution

Friday, 24 May 2013

Here at Myakka we are passionate about designing furniture that fits into your home and into your lifestyle. We know that every piece of furniture has to look great and function perfectly. So whether you need a coffee table that also offers loads of storage for magazines and toys or you need the perfect piece of hallway furniture to help tidy away all the families’ shoes, we have the perfect pieces of furniture for you.

Hallways are always prone to clutter, whether it be more than one pair of shoes, or perhaps coats and bags taken off the thrown down. To help we have a great selection of storage solutions specifically designed to fit your hallway.

If shoes are your main problem then perhaps a storage seat is the answer, designed to be sat on whilst you take off your shoes which are then tidied away under the seat into the cupboard. We have a range of designs and sizes so you can find the right one for your home.

Console tables are also great for the hallways. They provide the perfect perch to put the keys and the post on as well as drawers and a shelf or two for those shoes and bags. They are designed to be narrow enough for your hallway so they don’t take up too much space but provides the ideal amount of storage.

We specifically designed the Mallani Hallway Cupboard to be used in the busiest walkway in your home. With three drawers perfectly sized to take daily essentials such as hats and gloves as well as a roomy cupboard with removable mid height shelf making it adaptable to your needs. Similar to the hallway cupboard is the Mallani Open & Shut, again with three drawers but with open shelves instead of a cupboard.

Living rooms often collect the most amount of clutter, from homework and magazines to CDs, DVDs and games - they all need somewhere to live. A storage coffee table is the perfect solution for a busy family. It offers the important surface area for everyday family living and that all important home for a cup of coffee as well as offering storage for everything from remote controls, magazines and records (records fit especially well in the Chandra Storage Coffee Table).

TVs now nearly always come with the need for a lot of paraphernalia; Sky or Freeview boxes, DVD players and then game console as well as all the inevitable cables and wires. Our TV Units are designed for modern living. Many have useful cupboard doors so it can all be shut away to give a calming appearance. We have even designed some bigger units to suit the wider TVs and all of its extras, the Mallani Widescreen TV Unit is perfect for a wide TV and offers lots of useful storage or the Mallani Easy View Corner TV Unit offers the same useful space and storage but fits neatly into your corner. 

Bedrooms are another room that seems to attract clutter. There never seems to be enough room to store clothes, toys, accessories and spare bedding and towels. Our blanket boxes offer and amazing amount of storage in a small footprint. They are perfect for the kid’s toys or how about storing all your bulky winter jumpers through the summer months. Our blanket bokes are perfect for the foot of the bed and provide a useful perch for putting on your shoes.

We have lots of great storage solutions perfect for your home so whether you just want a little help storing your extra clutter or you are looking for a whole new revamp, we have a great selection of furniture to suit you.

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Summer Dining

Wednesday, 15 May 2013

As many of our regular blog readers know here at Myakka we love food and cooking. One of the great joys of cooking is sharing it with family and friends all sitting round the dining table enjoying good food and good conversation. So we thought we would share some delicious seasonal recipe ideas which are perfect for your next dinner party. 

We have a great selection of tableware and dining furniture so your dining room can be ready for guests. We have some great table runners with matching place mats which look great on Sheesham wood tables. Along with rattan placemats and mango wood bowls (which are perfect for pre-dinner nibbles) we have a whole range of ideas for your home to make your dinner party the best.  How about these simple and seasonal recipe ideas...

May is a season where there is a great selection of foods available, many chefs will tell you that things that are in season at the same time will often taste great together so how about trying this delicious Crab and asparagus tart.
Depending on whether you are feeling adventures you can either make a short crust pastry case or cheat and buy one, then cover with some lightly boiled asparagus and then cover with a mix of white and brown crab meat. In a bowl mix eggs, cream and salt and pour into pastry case. Sprinkle over some of your favourite local cheese and then arrange some asparagus, spoke fashion on top of the tart. Bake for about 35-40 minutes in a hot oven.  Serve with a seasonal rocket, radish and spring onion salad.

Main Course
Roast lamb is always a favourite and with the addition of minted new potatoes it makes the perfect seasonal, summer roast. Simply stud your lamb joint with garlic, rosemary and thyme and then roast in the oven until it is cooked to your liking. Meanwhile cook new potatoes in boiling water with a sprig of mint, some garlic, thyme and chicken stock. Once cooked drain, and mix the potatoes with some freshly chopped mint, salt, pepper and some butter. Serve with some fresh French beans or freshly podded peas, delicious.

For many their favourite part of dinner, the desert is what people will remember so why not treat your guests to a very seasonal Gooseberry and Elderflower Fool. Top and tail 450g of gooseberries and put into a pan with 150ml of elderflower cordial. Bring to the boil and then cook into the mixture is soft and pulpy, leave to cool. Make some custard with egg yolks, milk and sugar and let it cool.
Finally whip so cream and then combine the fruit, cream and custard by gently folding together. Serve in individual glass dishes and if you’re feeling creative, decorate with some fresh elderflowers on top.

Don’t forget to have a look at some of our great accessories for your dining room, we have a colourful selection of chair pads to make your dining experience extra comfortable as well as candle holders and lanterns to help create the perfect atmosphere. Take a look at our dining sets to find your perfect combination of table and chairs.

Once the table is laid and the dinner is cooled - the most important part of a dinner party is to enjoy, so take a seat, put your feet up and enjoy the food and conversation. The washing up can wait until the morning!

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Easy Gift Ideas

Friday, 10 May 2013

Here at Myakka not only do we deliver great fair trade furniture but we also have a great selection of gifts perfect for even the trickiest person. So whether you are buying for a tricky husband or wife or even the grandchild who has everything, we have some great gift ideas many of which are small enough to be sent through the post making it the perfect solution for friends and relatives up and down the country.

Cream Rose String of Lights
These Pretty lights are perfect for hanging around a bedroom or any other room in the home. Made from real leaves from rubber trees, these atmospheric lights will be loved by tricky teenagers and adults alike.

Elephant Dung Photo Album
The cover of these photo albums is partially made from recycled elephant dung which makes this a really unique gift. With 30 pages of acid free paper and tissue paper, these albums make the perfect home for all those special memories. Available in large and small size.

Souk Lanterns
These pretty lanterns can be used either inside or out to create the perfect atmosphere. Inspired by the souks of Marrakech these lanterns are the perfect pressie for anyone who has a taste for the exotic.

Carved Elephant Bookends
For book and elephant lovers alike, these hand carved elephants make the ideal present for both young and old. Both functional and attractive these bookends add a unique and friendly touch to every home.

Sari Patchwork Brocade Wall Hanging
Made from recycled sari stitched into a patchwork wall hanging, no two will ever be the same. Hand finished in small villages in Rajasthan, this wall hanging looks great instead of a headboard or on the wall in place of a picture.

Carved Heart Photo Frame
The perfect pressie for both the old and the young, these pretty heart photo frames are made from solid mango wood, finished with a soft white wash. To complete, just add your recipients favourite snap.

Kantha Fuchsia Patchwork Footstool
This pretty footstool is new to us here at Myakka and has already become one of our favourites. Each footstool is made up of a patchwork of fabric so no two will ever be the same. Both ornamental and practical this is the ideal gift for someone who needs to put their feet up!

Wooden Heart Coasters
These coasters are a pretty version of something very functional. Perfect for your mug of tea or glass of wine these coasters protect furniture from ring marks and ads a touch of style. They are even designed to be stored neatly together when not in use.

Yellow Flower Wooden Stool
This pretty stool is made from solid monkey pod wood and has a hand carved and painted flower on top. Perfect for little ones to sit on or makes a useful perch for adult feet! This stool is also available with a red, white or pink flower as well as a train, aeroplane or a car and more!

Contemporary Nest of Tables
And finally these tables make the perfect gift, whether it is a wedding present or a new home present these tables are a Myakka favourite for a reason. Both practical and attractive these tables are useful for guest but store neatly away when not in use.

Whoever you are buying gifts for we are sure we t have the right thing for you. If you have a deadline on a gift let our friendly Customer Service Team know and they will do their best to get it out in time for the special occasion.  Don’t forget handmade gift wrap for that special finishing touch.

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Compost - Nature's Way to Grow!

Wednesday, 8 May 2013

International Compost Awareness Week this year is between 6th and 12th May 2013! There is a full week of activities, events and publicity to improve awareness about using organic waste as a resource to produce compost.   Composting creates that black matter which makes your garden greener and the HOTBIN team is passionate about the stuff and here they are to tell us a little more...

The aim of this week is to encourage gardeners to improve their garden with rich, nutritious compost. Raising awareness for composting has never been more important than it is now with soil degradation increasingly becoming a worldwide problem. However you can be part of the solution to turn this trend around by simply composting! Composting will give you that good feeling that you are doing a small part for the environment - Saving landfill space and creating only CO2 instead of the more harmful methane. Composting not only reduces the amount of waste that needs to be disposed of, but also converts it into a useful product for your garden – Wow a big double whammy!

One HOTBIN user described his experience of HOTBIN composting as “quickly converting waste into good stuff for the garden whilst taking me a step further towards the good life.” Making and using compost is described as the cornerstone of organic gardening so if you want to 'Grow Your Own', there's no better place to start!

Using compost is the easiest way to make your garden grow more beautiful! Compost on your flowerbeds greatly improves soil quality by helping it retain moisture and improving tilth. It also reduces the need to use chemical fertilizers as it holds onto plant nutrients and releases them slowly to the plant roots. Compost is a complete and natural way to improve your soil.

The HOTBIN was specifically designed to help maximize what nature does naturally by bringing together the right conditions to make HOT composting easy. It works as you can actively achieve temperatures between 40 -60C. The higher temperatures along with the effective aeration allow the HOTBIN to effortlessly reduce and recycle a wide variety of food and garden waste into great compost all year round.

Why is HOTBIN composting different? Well most importantly the HOTBIN is insulated and controls airflow so it can compost fast which means you can add ALL food waste. And by this we mean; left over meals, plate scrapings, meat, fish, small bones and things like pasta, mouldy bread and cakes.

This is a huge benefit as 65% of food waste items are traditionally NOT added to a cold composting bin. Using a HOTBIN increases significantly your diversion of food waste from landfill. But be advised you do need a special food waste compost bin like the HOTBIN to handle all food waste

So what are you waiting for… home composting benefits your garden and your environment and it's easy!

Psst! You will find nice & rich compost tips and hot topics on our website & our blog! and

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Celebrate World Fair Trade Day!

Wednesday, 1 May 2013

 On 11th May 2013 Myakka will be supporting World Fair Trade Day. World Fair Trade Day is designed to encourage us all to buy more fair trade products so we can make a real difference to the lives of millions of producers across Africa, Asia and Latin America. World fair trade day is a festival of events that celebrates the work of fair trade which is celebrated in over 70 countries around the world.

World Fair Trade Day celebrates the work that fair trade has done to help producers from some of the poorest parts of the world fight poverty and provide a sustainable livelihood for the rest of their lives and beyond. It celebrates the millions of people working within fair trade and the world of producers and traders who support fair trade to help provide a fair and sustainable living for everyone involved within the supply chain. It is about encouraging and strengthening fair trade relationships and building on the 10 principles of fair trade.

This year to support Fair trade fortnight we gave away an amazing fair trade hamper we put together with the help of some of our fair trade friends. Fair trade is an important part of the Myakka ethos and we want to encourage as many people as possible to support and to buy fair trade products. More and more people are seeing fair trade and the right and sustainable thing to do, big brands have now started using fair trade produce such as chocolate and more and more fair trade products are available in our shops every week from flowers and fruit to beer and biscuits, there has never been a better time to buy fair trade. 

May is a busy month for fair trade as the World Fair Trade Organisation (WFTO) Biennial Conference will take place and from the 26th – 28th May 2013 in Rio de Janeiro. Although we would love to go to hear about all the developments in fair trade and to discuss all the challenges and opportunities, Rio is a little too far from sunny Somerset to make the trip but we are looking forward to hearing all about it. During the event Rio will be nominated as Global Fair Trade Capital because of the work that is done there to encourage and promote fair trade.

To celebrate World Fair Trade Day The British Association of Fair Trade Shops and Suppliers (BAFTS) have made a video celebrating fair trade and explains what fair trade is all about. The video 'For a Few Pesso More' shows the supply chain on a coffee bean and how small, simple changes to this chain can make a big difference to the farmers growing the crop. To take a look at the video simply click here.

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