In a world where a multi-million pound self-help industry has been constructed around the concept of “sparking joy”, I sometimes wonder if my mum missed a trick. Hers is a joy of the most childlike, glorious and infectious kind; and if she had come up with a way to package it up and sell it she could have been a millionaire years ago.
But then the trick, as I’m sure she would tell it, is that it isn’t a trick at all but the Holy Spirit; a gift that is hers by virtue of the fact that she doesn’t chew over the past, or worry about the future, but rather lives in the present moment, dewy-eyed and grateful.
While I used to grumble, and later joke, that it always rains on my birthday to the point that it’s become a self-fulfilling prophesy, my mum has always said that she gets – and so somehow always seems to get – beautiful days for her special days. She’s had quite a few of them recently – days for other people, as well as me, to celebrate what makes her such a special person and the difference that she has made to so many people’s lives – so if you’re looking for somebody to thank for the recent run of good weather, she’s your girl.
When Twenty Fingers got in touch to ask if I fancied writing about their personalised papercuts, I knew who would be the perfect recipient of one. Not just because her birthday was fast approaching – although there’s a recommendation right there, despite how intricate and detailed a piece of work it is, Lana from Twenty Fingers can turn around a gorgeous papercut in about a week for you – but because of how important family is to her.
One of my mum’s favourite gifts from us was a sterling silver “family tree”-style necklace I found on Etsy a few years ago; each of its leaves representing one of her three children. Of course, since then, my nephew Max has come along, so she was due for an upgrade in the shape of Twenty Fingers’ Rowan Tree design*.
Run out of their home in Milton Keynes by a husband and wife duo, Twenty Fingers specialise in bespoke papercuts but produce a range of handmade gifts, which also include bead art and wooden Christmas tree decorations. The papercuts are really something special though: they can be personalised with all sorts of word combinations and come as word clouds in all sorts of shapes, slogan wedding and new baby gifts – there’s even a Harry Potter quote or two in there. They’re also happy to accommodate one-of-a-kind designs from your own ideas and photographs.
The attention to detail that goes into a Twenty Fingers design is second-to-none, to the point that it’s hard to believe that these beautiful products are completely handmade. They arrive securely packaged in beautiful wooden frames sourced from a local supplier, and you can choose between standard glass and “Invisible True Colour” glass which reduces the sun’s glare on your unique hanging artwork.
The handmade nature of the product means you have no end of options when it comes to colour, and you can also choose from five different frame colours at no extra cost. This means that it’s hard to imagine you won’t be able to design a gift that perfectly matches the recipient’s taste and decor, even if it can be a little bamboozling at the order stage! Twenty Fingers are very responsive by email though, and will give you all the help you need.
The only complaint I could possibly make about the final product is the heft of it: my mum was a little nervous that she wouldn’t be able to find somewhere to hang it because of the difficulties with hammering a nail secure enough into her stone walls. Now that she’s found somewhere though, I’m confident that I’ve given her a gift she’ll be able to enjoy forever – although the steak dinner I made her on her birthday night was also appreciated!
This post contains a PR sample, but all views are my own and unbiased.