Friday, 4 December 2015

Be The Hostess With The Mostess


If you're hosting a Christmas party, lunch or family gathering, preparation is everything!


Dinner Sert

There is nothing worse than realising at the very last minute that you don't have enough plates for everyone (or a matching pieces). Options are to buy a new or extra dinner set, buy two or 3 of the same design, or buy an extra large set, as you can get some 32 piece dinner sets, which are perfect if you're having up to 8 guests for dinner.

Don't Forget Cutlery

canteen of cutlery

It's a given that we all have cutlery in our homes, but do you have enough for all the courses and all the guests? A canteen of cutlery is a great option as all the cutlery can be packed away for the next occasion. There's enough cutlery for 12 settings/guests and includes serving cutlery and a ladle too.

Cooking The Meal

food mixer pan set roaster

Cooking a Turkey with all the trimmings can be a daunting task, it can be made all the easier with the correct tools and some handy kitchen gadgets. Pans, Multi-Cookers, Steamers, Pressure Cookers, Roaster and Racks are useful, and a food mixer makes things all the simpler.

Sit Down Or Buffet?

buffer server

A jacobs join is a great way of having a get together without the host having to provide all the food and drink. If you don't want to risk everyone bringing the same food/course, you could put the names of dishes in a hat and allocate them at random to each of your guests. If you're happy providing the main course perhaps just ask guests to bring the starters, desserts, and drinks. One thing you do need to make sure you have enough of is serving dishes and serving spoons. Buffet servers are a great way to keep food hot on a buffet or dining table. This Giani buffer server can be used as both a hot tray and a plate warmer.


optics set

If you do decide to provide some of the drinks, you can host your Christmas party on a budget by sticking to 2-3 types of drink rather than offering a whole selection. If you start offering loads of different cocktails you’ll have to buy loads of different spirits and mixers, so keep things cheap by sticking to one or two. Mulled wine always goes down a treat at Christmas, and here's a handy mulled wine recipe courtesy of Jamie Oliver. If you find mulled wine a bit harsh why not add a drop of amaretto, it's lovely!

House Guests

airbed foldaway bed sofabed

If you've got guests staying over this Christmas and have fewer beds than people, air beds and folding guests beds are the perfect solution. You could also get character sofa beds for the kids rooms.

Tuesday, 17 November 2015

Get Ready To Party

We're all excited about our Christmas Parties, and even though we all probably have a dress we could wear we know we're more than likely going to treat ourselves to something new. It's the perfect excuse really isn't it!?

For Her

Frock And Frill Grey Beaded DressClub L Zigzag Sequin Maxi DressClub L Sequin Bardot Midi Dress

Shop the glitz and glam trend. This Grey Beaded Dress By Frock & Frill is fabulous, fun and flattering on any figure! The beautiful hand made embellishment makes this dress incredibly unique. The sleeveless dress boasts an elegant sheer embellished overlay and features a scooped back and is available in sizes 18-28 for only £49.99.

If you're looking for something longer, bring glamour to the party with this Club L ZigZag Sequin Maxi Dress featuring sequin embellishment to the body designed in a zigzag style, it's only £19.99 and is available in sizes 8-20.

And if you're looking for a little black dress then look no further! This Club L Sequin Bardot Midi Dress is available in black (as well as many other colours too), it has a close cut bodycon fit, is sequinned with an off-shoulder neckline, and is available in sizes 8-20 for only £12.99.

Shop Women's Partywear

For Him

Smart BlazerSkopes Slim Fit Shirt With Skinny Tie Setmens formalwear

Let's not forget the men when it comes to party wear! We have got a stylish selection of shirts, suits, jackets and waistcoats available, so if suited and booted isn't your thing, we have plenty of other party-perfect looks for you.

Simply adding a smart jacket or shirt and tie to your usual jeans and shoes combination will smarten up your look and make you look party-ready.

If you're looking for a whole new ensemble or attending a more formal event then take a look at our suits and suit pieces, such as waistcoats, suit trousers and suit jackets. Prices are from only £39.95.

Shop Men's Formalwear

For The Girls

Older Girl's Sequin Detail DressLittle Misdress Sequin Bodice DressLittle Misdress Sequin Detail Dress With Bow

Sequins are very much the fashion this season and Little Misdress have got them covered in their fantastic partywear range. We also have faux fur jackets and sparkly shoes to complete the look. Prcies are only from only £7.99

Shop Girls Partywear

For The Boys

Older Boys Party ShirtBen Sherman Blazer ShirtYounger

It can be a struggle to get boys out of their jeans no matter what their age, so smartening their look with a shirt or a waistcoat is a perfect way to smarten up their look ready for them running and sliding across the dance floor :-) Prices are from only £6.99.

Shop Boys Partywear

For Baby

Baby Girls 3-Piece Tutu Set & Boys 3-Piece Formal SetBaby Girls 3-Piece Tutu Set & Boys 3-Piece Formal SetBaby Girls 3-Piece Tutu Set & Boys 3-Piece Formal Set

It would be rude to forget to the little ones when it comes to Partywear as they do look incredibly cute in them! These sweet little outfits are available in sizes 3-24 months.

Shop Babywear

Thursday, 5 November 2015

Christmas Gift Buying Guide

Inspiration For Christmas Gifts

Thinking of ideas for the perfect present can be tricky, no matter who it is for. Your budget will probably be one of the main factors, so once you know how much you have to spend on each gift, this will help narrow down your final choice. Next, narrow it down to something relevant to the recipient. Choosing the perfect gift can be tricky, and it is easy to get it wrong. The key is to do your research: think about the things they buy for themselves, their hobbies, interests and personal style. Try not to be swayed by your own tastes and preferences, and avoid household and kitchen items unless they have specifically asked for them.

Gifts For Children

  • Browse Christmas catalogues and magazines for inspirational articles and ideas - newspapers will often publish 'most wanted this Christmas' lists in the run up to Christmas too. This will help you figure out what this year's 'must-have' toy is, and whether or not it is in your budget.
  • Pre-School children tend to like the toys that relating to characters from their favourite kids TV programme or films, such as Paw Patrol, Peppa Pig, Dora, Minions, Despicable Me and more.
  • If they already have a doll's house, you could create a hamper or gift bag of assorted accessories and doll's clothing. Or if they already own a garage or car set, you could consider adding to their car collection. These are inexpensive ways to help them get more fun from toys they already own. Remote control toys, such as cars, helicopters and boats are always a safe bet with younger children too.
  • Role play products, such as kitchens, washing machines, cookers, shopping carts, prams and dolls are guaranteed to keep younger children quiet for hours, and give the child a sense of responsibility.
  • Barbie may have been around since 1959, but her products are still as popular as ever.
  • Football related products such as boot bags, table football and personalised pyjamas are always worth considering as gifts. Just make sure you select the right team!
  • Children's electrical gadgets such as the V-Tech InnoTab Max do not only provide hours on entertainment but are educational too. These products are generally aimed at children aged between 3 and 10 years old.
  • It's always more difficult to shop for older children, if you're truly stuck for ideas, or you want to contribute financially to a bigger present they're saving for why not put some money in a money wallet. You can still get them something to unwrap by filling a gift bag filled with fruity flavoured toiletries, hair bands, clips, lip balms, sweets, stickers or novelties
  • Personalise it - for truly unique and memorable gifts, consider taking advantage of our free personalisation service, which is available on a whole host of products. Personalised chairs, pyjamas and animal onesies are a handful of the most popular personalised products for children at Ace.
  • If you have a bit of extra cash to spend on gifts, then games consoles and games are guaranteed to put a smile on most children (or grown men's) faces. Check out the PS4 and the Xbox One, both of which are now available to order.

Browse our gifts for kids

Gifts For Babies

  • For a baby's first Christmas, personalised gifts are always a great idea. You might want to consider a 'baby's first Christmas' bauble or stocking or even something more intimate and personal, like a handprint set. These gifts will last a lifetime and be cherished as the baby grows older.
  • Toys which aid development are also fantastic Christmas gift ideas. Walk mats and baby walkers encourage a baby to walk its first steps with bright colours and engaging music.
  • Soothing, night-time toys are very popular. Cuddly toys which glow in the dark and play relaxing music are an ideal way to help a baby drift off into a peaceful sleep.
  • If you're working on a tight budget and looking for a more affordable gift plush toys, rattles and baby clothes are good options to consider.

Browse our gifts for babies.

Christmas Gifts For Ladies

Treat the lady or ladies in your life to something really special - here are some ideas.

  • Clothing is a good option if you know her style, and more importantly, her size! Do your research before buying to avoid embarrassing mistakes.
  • If clothing is too risky, some easier options are accessories such as hats, gloves and scarves which do not usually have precise sizing, and will get immediate use in the colder weather.
  • Handbags are usually well-received - again, a little research can go a long way. Look for a style she likes, or perhaps she always chooses the same size or type of fastening. Does she have a favourite handbag that is looking a little tired? If you are still not sure, there are some great, funky shopping bags available. Or, for a glamorous lady, look for a stylish evening bag to match one of her favourite outfits, or in a neutral colour such as black or silver.
  • Jewellery - if she likes and wears jewellery, this is always a good option. Bracelets and pendants suit everyone, and if she has pierced ears, this gives you even more options. The good thing about jewellery is that there are thousands of styles and designs in different materials and colours, so you will always find something different, whatever the budget.
  • Cosmetics and toiletries are a good choice: most ladies welcome a pampering treat, especially if you can select a brand you know they like. Spa days and Experience Days are also worth considering; they provide a fun, relaxing day out and generally aren't too expensive. Make-up and hair care products can also be a nice idea, especially if you choose more luxurious branded products that they would not normally buy for themselves. Perfume and fragrance gift sets are available in abundance in the run up to Christmas, so there is plenty to choose from no matter what your budget.
  • Books - if she likes to read, book tokens or gift vouchers might be just what she'd like. If you are confident you know her reading tastes, you could even choose a book for her. Consider other books you remember her reading - did she like them? Is there a sequel or set? Autobiographies make great Christmas gifts, as long as she is interested in the author - try to think about famous names she admires. Check the current best-sellers list for inspiration. If your budget allows, you could consider an e-reader such as an Amazon Kindle. They fit comfortably in a bag or suitcase and allow you to carry around an entire library of books!
  • Personalise it - for something special that she will treasure, put her name on it. There are all kinds of personalised gifts available for ladies, from engraved wine glasses to purses and bags. Or how about a personalised bathrobe, perfect for snuggling into after a pampering session.
  • Hobbies, sports and pastimes can generate ideas - if she enjoys the gym, perhaps a new gym bag or mp3 player to make her workouts more enjoyable.
  • Memories are always good inspiration for really special gifts. Consider past conversations: does she reminisce about places she used to go, things she used to do, a film or book from the past, or perhaps some music she used to love? This can be a good source of ideas if you need inspiration.
  • Alcohol can be a welcome gift. Choose a bottle of her favourite tipple, and be sure to spend more than she normally would, for a luxury treat. Many of our alcohol gift sets can be personalised free of charge!
  • If your budget permits, there are lots of experience days and treats that can be arranged - treat her to a balloon ride, a makeover or photoshoot - or perhaps she would prefer to take a drive in a sports car...
  • Stocking filler suggestions for ladies: socks, tights, lip balms, hairbrushes and styling accessories, make-up brushes, chocolate treats.

Browse our gifts for ladies here

Christmas Gifts For Men

For the men or man in your life, if you are struggling for inspiration, how about some of these ideas:
  • Clothing is always a safe option - if you know what size to buy. Do your research and make sure you know his size before you go shopping, to avoid embarrassment on the day.
  • Books - if he enjoys reading, book tokens or gift vouchers might be just what he would like most. If you are confident you know his favourite author or reading tastes, you could even choose a book. Consider other books he has read recently and whether he enjoyed them? If there is a sequel or set, you could buy the next instalment as a gift. Autobiographies make great Christmas gifts, as long as he is interested in the author - try to think about famous names he admires or has shown an interest in. Check the current best-sellers list for inspiration. If your budget allows, you could even consider an e-reader such as an Amazon Kindle, which opens up a whole world of reading possibilities.
  • Hobbies, sports and pastimes can be great for generating ideas - if he plays football or supports a particular football or rugby teams, a sporting gift may be perfect could be a good place to start. If he is sporty, perhaps a new gym bag or accessory would be welcome.
  • Check out the PS4 and the Xbox One, both of which are available to order.
  • Gadgets are always a popular choice at Christmas. This could be an electronic device, if your budget allows, or perhaps a DIY tool or gadget. Some of the most popular gadgets include Amazon Kindles, iPads, digital cameras and game consoles.
  • Alcohol can be a welcome gift if he likes a drink, simply find out his favourite tipple, buy a bottle or crate and tie a ribbon around it. Many of our alcohol gift sets can be personalised free of charge!
  • For older recipients who seem to 'have everything', food and drink gifts are a safe bet. Consider creating a customised hamper of luxury produce for a special treat.
  • Memories are always good inspiration for really special gifts. Consider past conversations - does he reminisce about places he has visited, things he used to do, films they have watched, a concert they went to? This can be a good source of ideas if you need inspiration.
  • Personalise it - for something he will treasure, put his name on it. You can personalise all kinds of gift with his name or initials. A personalised wallet is an inexpensive Christmas present, or you could opt for a drinking glass engraved with his name.
  • If your budget allows, consider giving them a once in a lifetime experience with the gift of an Experience Day - you can purchase vouchers entitling him to an experience he won't forget, such as driving a sports car, flying an aeroplane, or active activities like paintballing.
  • Stocking filler suggestions for men: socks, underwear, pens, tools and gadgets, shaving / grooming products and accessories, chocolate, confectionery.

Browse our gifts for men.

Other Christmas Gift Ideas

Some other ideas for Christmas presents
  • Secret Santa is a popular idea, especially in offices or workplaces. Names are drawn from a hat, and each person buys a gift for the person they have selected at random. Secret Santa gifts have a fixed budget, usually around £5.00, so the fun is in the challenge of choosing a cheap gift for that person. Depending on the recipient, and the type of workplace, the gifts may be jokey or may be more thoughtful. Tailor the gift to the recipient - if they have a sense of humour then a novelty gift will be perfect, otherwise choose something generic that will not cause offence. Great ideas for gifts around the £5.00 mark include stationery, food, drink, calendars, books and novelties, but, of course, you can choose almost anything as long as it is within the set budget.
  • There is a growing trend for giving Christmas gifts for pets, and these range from inexpensive treats and nibbles to more luxurious accessories. Look for cat and dog selection packs, or how about a personalised rug, bed or food bowl for your pet?

Friday, 30 October 2015

Winter Boots

The leaves are falling off the trees, the clocks have already gone back, it's rained for a week non-stop, these are all signs that Autumn is well and truly here, and that winter is just around the corner. But don't be sad, this is the perfect excuse to say goodbye to your summer footwear, and say hello to a new pair of boots!

Knee Boots

Knee Boots

Knee high boots, and over knee boots are fabulous for so many reasons; they're super stylish, and can be worn with both skinny jeans/trousers, and also with skirts and dresses. They keep you warm as it's an extra layer of material on your legs, and if you get leather or faux leather boots, when it's raining, less of your legs will get wet.

Ankle Boots

Ankle BootsAnkle Boots

Ankle Boots are a great boot for autumn as they are the ultimate transitional Footwear, whether you're looking for heeled ankle boots, biker style, flat boots, or boots with embellishment's such as zips or tazzles you're in for a treat, we've got a great range at ace, with prices from only £12.99

Ugg Boots

Uggs are loved by so many and are sure to keep you warm and snug all winter (and summer) long. They're available for only £139.99 and in a choice of 3 fab colours. We also have a range of Emu Boots and Skechers boots too, that look snug and warm too. Emu Boots are priced from only £99.99 and Skechers boots are priced from only £29.99.

Whatever your style or budget we're sure to have a style to suit! Shop our Boots Collection today.

Friday, 9 October 2015

Fun Ideas For October Half Term

There's nothing worse than having one of those 'don't know what to do' October half term days, or hearing the kids on day two of the holiday saying "Muuuuummmmmmm, i'm bored!" So if your looking for some fun ideas for October Half Term? We have some great ideas for things to make, see and do!

1 - Baking
Why not get the kids interested in baking by letting them make their own pies, cakes or even salt dough decorations that they could decorate and keep. They could make autumnal shaped ones in the shape of leaves or conkers, or even get a head start on Christmas with snowmen, Christmas tree, star and bell shaped ones. They can then decorate to their hearts content!

2 - Board Games
minions monopolyfrozen operationminions operation
Something that children rarely get bored of playing with. From classics such as Monopoly and Operation to new favourites such as pie face. Board games can provide you and the kids with hours of fun.

3 - Dress Up
action dress upfantasy dress up
Kids love dressing up, whether its in an actual dressing up outfit or mix and matching characters or even making their own, and with Halloween coming up during half term as well, dressing up is likely to be at the top of most kids things to do list!

4 - Art and Craft
Disney Princess Rolling Art DeskMinions Rolling Art DeskSpirograph
If October half term week ends up being a wet and windy week there is still plenty you can still do to keep the kids entertained, from simple potato printing for the little kids to full on masterpieces for the older kids. Kids can get involved in making Halloween masks, or painting autumn leaves they've collected. And with Christmas just around the corner this is the perfect time to start making cards and gifts.

5 - Play-Doh
Doh Vinci Anywhere Art AcePlay-Doh Crazy Cuts
There is so much fun that can be had with Play-Doh, whether it's with the Play-Doh Vinci Anywhere Art Ace, Play-Doh Crazy Cuts or simply tubs and tubs of Play-Doh you can make, build, design and re-make many many shapes and patterns.

6 - Reading
Many kids have tablets and e-readers where they can play and read where ever they are, but physical books are so much fun. We've got a fab range of education, colourful, musical, personalised and character books for children. Prices start from only £3.99.

7 - Outdoor Ideas
Instant Flower Press
Autumn is a really special time to be outdoors, there is so much to captivate children on walks and trips to the park, from simply kicking fallen leaves to collecting some of their favourite leaves and flowers to take home and press or paint. Collecting conkers is also a great autumn activity, see how many you can collect and take them home to ready them for your own personal conker championship!

8 - Learn a New Skill
Hello Kitty Sock KittyKnitted AnimalsHello Kitty Decorate Your Own Purse Kit
If time is on your side at half term why not teach the kids to knit or sew, it doesn't have to be an expensive skill or hobby, as sewing kits and knitting kits start from under £10, the kids will have a real sense of achievement from having made something themselves too. They could start by simply making a sock kitty, or a decorating a purse or bag, or learning to knit and making their own knitted animals.