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A Luckies Guide to planning the perfect Summer BBQ

Here at Luckies we believe that the great British summertime is nothing without the perfect summer BBQ. Before you know it, the spring blossom is blown away, it’s stopped raining for more than 15 minutes and summer is on your doorstep. With our guide to planning the perfect summer BBQ you’ll be in your Ray-Bans dusting off that barbie that’s been rusting at the bottom of your garden for most of the year. Trust us, this year’s gonna be a scorcher. 

The best thing about summertime barbecues is that they are an excuse to create a mini festival in your back garden…just without the feared festival porter loos! With Pocket Tin Speaker, a nifty rechargeable speaker with up to 12 hours playback, you can create your own Main Stage arena as you turn it all the way up with some hot weather hits. Whether you want to chill in the acoustic tent with Bob Marley’s soulful summer vibes or get all emosh late into the evening with some classic Coldplay (lighters in the air, kinda vibe), connect up to Spotify or your own playlist and become the official barbecue DJ.

If you’re going for a family friendly barbie or simply enjoy all things silly, then ditch the bog-standard paper cups for our fun-filled Party Cups. Each Party Cups pack contains 12 paper cups in different colours, different faces and different expressions. With so many variations it means you can create up to 48 unique cup designs by twisting the faces round until you get the expression you want. Start the night holding a cheeky clown and end it with him looking slightly worse for wear as the Pimms keeps pouring. You can also keep to the no-things-boring rule with Party Straws, mix and match these hilarious party straws with 48 pop-out card mouths that you can attach to your straw. From a ‘toothless grin’ expression to a ‘pucker up’ pair of lips, these witty expressions keep the bantz a plenty and help identify everyone’s drink…“I asked for DIET coke!”

With cups, straws and songs covered it’s time to whip out the steaks and light that bad boy barbecue up. With this being a Luckies Guide to the perfect summer BBQ, to guarantee the most luscious steaks be sure to marinade them before putting on the heat. Mix up a splash of olive oil, garlic, soy sauce, Dijon mustard, balsamic vinegar and Worcestershire sauce and cover the steaks (or aubergine for veggies!) before leaving them for 2 hours in the fridge to soak up the flavours. Once barbecue ready, chuck them on the coals and brand with Barbeque Stamp, a unique and fun branding iron that can personalise your steaks by labelling them ‘Black & Blue’, ‘Nearly Burnt’ or ‘Little Bit of Blood’ (very manly).

And finally, whatever the style of BBQ, us Brits do love a bit of booze in the sun. Keep the many many many mojitos coming with Juice Bruce Squeezer, a handy wooden citrus squeezer, called Bruce, of course, that makes juicing those many limes for the mojitos all the more enjoyable…

4 Ways To Celebrate The Queen’s Birthday

Cool gift ideas

Our longest-reigning monarch (known to us as Queenie) is turning 90 this year and if that’s not something to shake a selfie stick at, we don’t know what is. Here at Luckies, we’re Union Jack wearing, corgi stroking, tea drinking ready to celebrate this special day with some good old fashioned British pride. But if you’re struggling for regal inspiration, take at look at some of our suggestions on how to celebrate the big day below…

1) Throw a street party

To commemorate the momentous occasion, an official street party is taking place at The Mall in London on Sunday 12th June. But if like us you can’t wait that long, grab some Party Cups, get in touch with your local council and come together to celebrate the royal occasion by throwing your own street party. Your local council is responsible for co-ordinating road closures and diversions (snoooooze) so you can spend your precious time getting the shade of blue just right for the Union Jack cake icing. We’d also recommend picking up our Book of Masks and placing them on each table so your guests can play dress up whilst eating crust-free cucumber sandwiches and sipping on pimms.

2) Visit Windsor

The Queen has chosen to spend her 90th birthday at Windsor Castle. So what better excuse to take a trip there and uncover it on your Scratch Map® UK and Ireland poster?! On the 12th of April the Queen will unveil a plaque marking the start of a four-mile Queen’s Walkway at the bottom of Castle Hill in Windsor. Afterwards, the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh will greet members of the public but unless the zoom on your camera is epic, we recommend getting there early to get a good spot. Don’t worry if you miss out though, at 7.00pm the cute couple will make another appearance to light a beacon along with over 1,000 others across the country and worldwide.

3) See some Official Pomp & Ceremony

Sticking with Windsor Castle (she is turning 90 after all..) why not celebrate with HRH by getting tickets to her Official 90th Birthday Celebrations. With a performance involving 900 horses (they are her fave) and more than 1,500 participants from around the United Kingdom and the World it is set to be an amazing spectacle. Tickets start at £55, or if you want access to the Guard Chamber (which basically means you can get within waving distance of the birthday girl) you’ll have to stump up £165. Her Majesty’s 90th Birthday Party will take place during the evenings of 12th – 15th May 2016 in London and last time we checked there were still tickets for the Friday and Saturday!

4) Buy a Corgi

Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II has had over 30 Corgis during her reign so we thought what better way to honour her than by owning her favourite furry friend?! Not only are Welsh Corgis super cute, they are known for their loyalty and intelligence. Despite their small size, they make for great watchdogs, alterting their owners if they notice anything ‘different’ (which can come in handy if you’re the type of person who doesn’t notice their girlfriend’s new haircut). You’re welcome.

But remember kids, a dog is for life not just for the Queen’s birthday.

Spring Break Margarita Recipe with Juice Bruce

Juice Bruce Squeezer by Monkey Business

If you’re lucky enough to be revealing the coloured foil underneath Mexico on your Scratch Map® world map poster this Spring Break, we think you need to get a margarita recipe down. Or if like us, you didn’t quite get your flights booked to Cancun in time (your bank account/annual leave said no) and need some consoling that you won’t be dancing around in a bikini to MTV bangers, just remember that when life gives you lemons (limes), make margaritas! So stop sulking, get a group of mates together, grab a paddling pool, throw on your sombrero and have your own Spring Break in your back garden with our cracking margarita recipe. After two of these, you won’t even be able to spell Cancun let alone be sad about it…

Serves 20-24

What you’ll need:

  • Large jug or punch bowl
  • Juice Bruce Squeezer
  • Nessie Ladle
  • Stirrer
  • Salt
  • 750ml bottle of tequila (tip: use a high quality, 100% agave tequila if you want a better chance at avoiding the hangover…)
  • 2 cups of Triple Sec or Cointreau
  • 1 cup of freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1 lime (to flavour the rim of the glasses)
  • 2 bags of ice cubes

Method:

First things first, pour some salt onto a plate and cut one lime into wedges to rim the edge of the glasses with. You can do this right before you serve the draaaaanks for extra freshness. In the meantime, fill each glass with ice cubes to chill. You’ll throw these out before serving. Start squeezing the rest of limes with Juice Bruce. Once you’ve got a cup full pour it, along with the bottle bottle of tequila, 2 cups of Triple Sec or Cointreau into the jug and give it a good stir. Taste and add more orange liqueur if you think your margaritas need more sweet oranginess to balance the other flavours.

To serve:

Throw the ice out of the glasses, run a lime wedge round the rim of the glass and invert into the plate with the salt to give them a light dusting round the edge. Use Nessie Ladle to fill the glass with your delicious concoction and enjoy!

If you’re actually heading to Mexico and don’t want to worry about glassware, serve in our Party Cups instead. The quirky characters will distract you from the lack of salt around the rim of your glass…

A Luckies Guide to making the perfect Afternoon Tea 

How To Make Perfect Afternoon Tea

With preparations proudly underway to celebrate Her Royal Highness’s 90th birthday, it is only too fitting to offer a Luckies Guide to making the perfect afternoon tea so you can celebrate with your friends and totally out-posh Elizabeth. Sure you may have to excuse K-Mids and Wills for not being able to attend on this occasion, but with our royal advice you’ll become a dinky cake creating expert who brews a corking cuppa. So, as was once said by Queen Marie Antoinette a very long time ago – let them eat cake!

The forefront for the perfect afternoon tea is, without a hesitation, the tea! Just like you wouldn’t dream of having only one variety of tea on offer, like bog-standard English Breakfast, you wouldn’t dream of having just one way of serving it…would you?! With Umbrella tea infuser you’ll have happy faces all round by offering a variety of loose tea (we’re talking Lapsang Souchong, Ceylon, Assam, Lady Grey and Darjeeling), served in the cutest of ways. So whether it’s a builders brew with three sugars, or a decaf on its own (because you’re sweet enough, wink wink), enjoy this quirky tea infuser that lets the leaves beautifully brew away creating the perfect Rosie-Lee. Oh, and don’t forget to remind your guests of the royal etiquette of sticking out their pinky finger when they sip!

Next up on the Luckies Guide to making the perfect afternoon tea is the grub. Though we expect your guests to be complete ladies and gentlemen who do not shovel food into their mouths like hungry children, it’s still a good idea to provide a tower of food, preferably served on a tiered tea stand to keep with custom, of course. With Cookie Cup Cookie Cutter, a cute cookie cutter shaped like a tea cup, you can choose to stick to afternoon tea tradition by serving scrummy scones and clotted cream or get busy by baking bite size biscuits. And why not make life even sweeter with Message Rolling Pin, one of our many cool gift ideas and afternoon tea essentials ideal when adding that personal touch. Ever wanted to tell your crush how you feel about them? Well with this message covered rolling pin you can by inviting them to afternoon tea and creating biscuits with ‘Bite me’ on! We’re pretty sure Charles will be getting Camilla this on her next birthday.

And finally, when it comes to savoury finger food, no afternoon tea would be complete without the ultimate miniature cucumber and cream cheese sandwiches. With this being a Luckies Guide it means that these are no ordinary cucumber sandwiches, but sandwiches with a cucumber twist. Literally. With Cucumbo, the spiral slicer for cucumbers you’ll have the perfect afternoon tea and finger food fit for a Queen. Just trim off those pesky crusts, slice the cucumber into spirals and serve just as guests arrive to avoid any soggy sarnies.

Now you can relax because that’s cuppas, cake and cucumbers all created with our amazing cool gift ideas for the perfect afternoon tea. Well done, you’ve done your country proud.

The Luckies Guide to Throwing the Perfect Spring Time Picnic

We don’t know about you, but here at Luckies the moment the sun comes out, it’s the moment the shorts and sunnies stay out. It’s time to get out those knobbly knees in 7 degrees and soak up the spring sun with the perfect spring time picnic. With our guide to throwing the perfect spring time picnic, you’ll become the emperor of outdoor eating by treating your friends and family every time the temp hits double figures. Scorcher.

Picture the perfect spring time picnic, you and your family are sat amongst the daffodils watching the bouncing baby lambs when all of a sudden you whip out lollipop shaped pieces of watermelon and everyone loves you. Well we can make this dream a reality (minus the bouncing lambs) with Pepo Watermelon Slicer, as it conveniently cuts giant watermelons into cute, bite sized lollipop shaped slices. Quickly prepare before setting out to avoid lugging a mammoth melon in your rucksack, then enjoy without the mess of millions of pips and an unwanted sticky face and fingers. The essence to a good picnic is the grub so make sure not to forget these healthy treats or the fam might be left feeling a bit hungry and meloncholy – get it!

After tucking into food it’s time to tuck into some tunes with your portable Smartphone Speaker. Gone are the days of playing music straight from the phone, now people want LOUD impressive sound quality with just the right amount of base. So give the people want they want with this handy lightweight speaker with 40 hours playback making it ideal when throwing the perfect spring time picnic. Whether your vibe’s Iggy Azalea or Iggy Pop, be the party starter and turn the family friendly day out into an ultimate picnic partying rave – only if that’s the vibe you’re going for of course.

And finally, we hate to be the bringer of bad news and bad weather but perfect spring time picnics are occasionally met with not so perfect forecasts. With Come Rain or Shine you can expect the unexpected as this waterproof mat and umbrella works hand in hand, whatever the weather. If the grass is wet but the sun is out then you can dine on this mat and avoid wet bottoms and if the weather takes a turn for the worst, you can use it as a handy umbrella. If it continues to pour then make sure you have an indoor activity on hand such as OMY Giant Colouring Roll XXL, a giant colouring sheet measuring 100 x 180cm that everyone can get involved in. And the best part of it is that it’s not just for kids as colouring in has now become a trendy hobby for adults who practise mindfulness. And take it from us, after that perfect spring time picnic becomes a wash out, they might very well need a bit of mindful colouring in to calm them down!

A Luckies Guide: Cool Gift Ideas for Adventurers

Life’s too short to spend each and every day in the same part of the world, especially when there’s just so much out there waiting to be explored! It’s time to make Bear Grylls proud by spreading your wings and embarking on an adventure of a lifetime with the help of our cool gift ideas for adventurers. Whatever adventure awaits, be it hiking across Hawaii or an excursion to Antarctica (rather daring!), treat yourself or a travelling buddy to a gift that will get them ready and psyched to take on the big, bad but glorious world!

Adventure Journal

When faced with a new task of setting off on a life-changing adventure around the world some might argue it can be tricky knowing where to begin! But fear not as Adventure Journal kick-starts your voyage of a lifetime by providing over 300 bucket list ideas, 8 x mini regional Scratch Maps and a 64 page journal featuring ‘must do’ experiences around the world. When on your travels you can cross off your visit to the Great Barrier Reef and Eiffel Tower (but maybe not in the same day!) and keep all souvenirs like tickets and pictures safe in this cute journal. This is one of our ultimate cool gift ideas for adventurers and we’re pretty certain that if Christopher Columbus was with us today, Adventure Journal would totes be top of his wish list.

Inner & Socks Pouch

Another of our cool gift ideas for Adventurers is our Alife In Luggage Pouches. For adrenaline junkies living out of a rucksack, with the Inner and Socks Pouch you can quickly change socks and undies before getting back to that giant bungie jump. No more having to pull out the entire contents of your bag looking for a lonely left sock, by keeping these two essentials in their own pouch, you will have them on hand in no time. These drawstring bags also take up minimal space so you can squeeze in an extra pair of waterproof trousers and Rocky inspired bandanas to fully commit to life in the wild.

On Air Toothbrush Cover

Next up on our guide is the On Air Toothbrush Cover which aids your adventure off the beaten track and keeps those pearly whites super shiny for all #adventureselfies. Whether you’re chilling in Chile or climbing Kilimanjaro, you’ll be thankful for this cute plastic cover keeping your toothbrush nice and fresh. It works best for two main reasons: 1.You never know when you’ll next meet civilisation that sells toothbrushes and 2. You may bump into a good-looking traveller and want to snog them under a waterfall. Aww, we can but wish.

Travel Organiser

Throughout your adventure we would expect nothing less than for you to break free of all Western traditions. Forget wearing real shoes and brushing your hair because you now live in sandals and keep flowers in your dreadlocks. And though we praise this new you, a little organisation never goes amiss. With the Travel Organiser, you can store all your travel documents in one place, that’s passport, boarding pass and tickets all on hand for minimal airport drama. This shiny enamel PVC travel wallet also comes in different colours; that’s blue for you and pink for your pal which in turn makes it one of our most essential cool gift ideas for travel buddies.

A Luckies Guide: Cool Gift Ideas for Food Lovers

For all foodies, veggies and besties that can’t get enough of cooking, our cool gift ideas for food lovers is sure to whet your appetite. Whether your signature dish be curry, soup or fancy casserole (is this making you hungry!?) these culinary gifts are sure to keep your foodie friends cooking and in turn, your belly nice and full.

Nessie Family Gift Set

If you’re looking to score big brownie points then the ultimate of cool gift ideas for food lovers is the Nessie Family Gift Set. It’s often said a family that eat together, stay together, so feel the Nessie family love with ladle, colander and tea infuser all in one box. Each utensil is a must-have for anyone who loves cooking as they can now serve souped-up soup and stews in monster portions. Forget the expression ‘too many cooks spoil the broth’, because these three handy helpers cutely fit together causing minimal mess and bring a splash of colour to the kitchen.

Oiladdin Bottle Pourer

Oiladdin Bottle Pourer is perfect for foodie fanatics as they can rub this mini magic lamp and wish for just a ‘light drizzle’ of oil and *poof!* – wish granted! With this little gadget you won’t get an uncontrollable flow of oil pouring all over the place and ruining that nice salad, but can now enjoy an Arabian night in as you fry, drizzle and bake away. Also working as a bottle stopper that fits most bottles, you can proudly have this exotic little lamp on display as you conjure up your next wish.

Mafaldine Bands

If your foodie friends are anything like ours then once they’re done cooking up a storm, the aftermaths can be seen sprayed around the kitchen. Every counter top is covered in the contents of half open packets of rice, pasta and cereals and though their chicken stew is coming along nicely, the kitchen needs a bit of TLC. With Mafaldine Bands you can avoid such disasters with these cute elastic organisers tightly sealing and securing all open packets. They’re a quirky kitchen gadget that keeps food fresh and organised ready for the next culinary storm brewing…

Nutwork Nutcracker

And finally, the Nutwork Nutcracker is the latest of our cool gift ideas for food lovers who are real hard nuts to crack. They may have every kitchen utensil going, but what they won’t have is this swanky metal nutcracker which gets down to the nuts and bolts of nut cracking. Designed to look like a heavy duty G-Clump, it’s the perfect gift for those protein packing friends of yours, or for anyone who is quite simply nuts about nuts!