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Did you know that @Rightmoveaddicts’ alter ego is actually Andrea Morgan who founded Citrus Content? Like most super hero’s Andrea has her day job but she isn’t a journalist for the Daily Planet or a photographer for a local newspaper Andrea founded her own company and writes content for property and interior companies all over the UK. Unlike Superman we share Andrea’s superhero talents through our work but there are still some fun facts about @RightmoveAddict.
Would you rather…
Enjoy a houseboat or speedboat? Has to be a houseboat as I suffer from motion sickness. I absolutely love water and the idea of being on any boat really appeals, but sadly my heart and my body don’t think alike.
Go to a play or musical? Now that is tricky as I used to work in theatre, but I guess I would say musical. I performed in an amateur dramatics group as a child and so grew up in musicals. In my adult life musicals played a huge part in the theatres’ I managed, especially Wicked. When I worked in London, this was the last show that I worked on and was privileged to have been there from the beginning. The opening night of this production was something the like I have never seen. Idina Menzel was playing Elphaba when Wicked opened and as she walked on stage, before she opened her mouth, there was a standing ovation for about 20 minutes.
Use Facebook or Twitter? Ummm now my whole RightmoveAddict journey started on Twitter and the platform changed my life, so I would have to say Twitter. Although recently I have been doing a lot of work in Facebook at the moment due to some very active groups I am a member of.
Go to a comedy club or dance club? Dance club I think, it would depend what type of dance club as I’m not into the whole ‘clubbing’ scene. I guess I am a geek at heart!
Who would you want with you if you were stranded on a deserted island? Patrick Dempsey, and Kevin Bacon doing the voice over, he has such a distinctive voice like Morgan Freeman. I am sure I was supposed to say some deep thinking, but if you’re stranded you want to have some fun in the sun! (Whoops, sorry hubby!)
If money was no object, what would you do all day? I would still work as I love what I do. But I would guess it would give me the freedom to also travel more, indulge in a spa day more often of course go house hunting.
Where do you most want to travel, but have never been? There are many places I would like to see, at the moment I think Australia. It is not somewhere I fancied before, but over the last couple of years I have made some great connections with people over there and I would love to meet them and also explore their contrasting landscape.
What is your favorite memory? My Sammy (my five year old son) every day we have many special moments. He is a mummy’s boy and I love the time we spend together, it’s precious, weird and very crazy.
What does your perfect day look like? In my dream world – Morning cuddles with Sammy, a few hours working on my business, being pampered at a spa, dinner with my hubby, reading Sammy a bedtime story.
If you could go back in time, what year would you travel to? I am a costume drama queen; there is nothing I like more than reading Jane Austen or watching Downtown Abbey. But I do think it would be the Regency Period, I love the poetic language, but of course I would be a woman of means.
What’s the #1 most played song on your iPod? I really wasn’t sure what would come up and I was surprised. Alison Krauss – Forget about it
What is one of your favorite quotes? Things happen for a reason
If you could meet anyone, living or dead, who would you meet? History fascinates me. I would love to do a ‘Who do you think you are?’ and go and meet my ancestors as far as I could go.
Have you ever had a nickname? What is it? If you ask my sister it is Half Pint.
And finally if you had a super power what would it be? Now that I’m over my fear of heights following our zip-wire off the Newport Transporter Bridge for our charity Ieuan The Lion Memorial Fund, I would like to be able to fly!
So it seems that even superheroes have a normal life too. Get to know @RightmoveAddict aka Andrea and her team at Citrus Content and let them show you their super powers.
This week I returned back to work from my holiday in Kos and was preparing myself for those well-known holiday blues to set in on Sunday evening but something amazing happened, this time they didn’t appear!
This got me thinking, where were they? In my previous jobs (and pre-baby) I used to go on holiday two to three times a year and without fail I would suffer from quite severe holiday blues on my return but not this time, why? And the simple answer is that I have job satisfaction now, do you? A while ago I sat down with my Grandad who we call Grumpy George, he asked his usual questions of how am I and how is work and my usual response was, “It’s fine, who really actually enjoys their job anyway?” His reply always puzzled me until now.
Grumpy George – “I loved my job, I always hated the weekends and couldn’t wait to go back in on a Monday”
I never understood how he could feel like this about working, don’t get me wrong I still enjoy my weekends but I’m starting to see what he meant. Now when I visit and he asks about work I actually bore him with details and stories about my week and I have to say it gives me a nice feeling to be proud and happy to talk about work.
When you look at the facts it’s actually quite scary, some of you will spend more time in work than you do at home, which means you also spend more time with your colleagues than you do with your family and friends. So why don’t you make it essential that you enjoy your time at work?
With my 18 month old son in nursery 5 days a week I did have some feelings of guilt that his nursery teachers were seeing him as much as me and I’m sure some of you may have felt the same. Obviously we tell ourselves that nursery is good for them to learn, play and grow without us and although I believe this to be true it also helps that I am enjoying myself at work when he is enjoying his time too. Evenings and weekends are precious but I am finding myself feeling happier throughout the day which then continues when I get home and any Sunday Sadness has been erased.
Here are some ways that Citrus helps our team to enjoy our work.
- Monday Morning Meeting - Every week we have a conference call where as a team we discuss our weekend and our week ahead. I personally find this friendly, supportive and inspiring. As each meeting closes I find myself excited to get started.
- Freedom – With options of flexible working hours and working from home each team member benefits from this in their own way.
- Incentives – Citrus has joined Perkbox, an employee perks scheme for small businesses that gives us offers and discounts on anything from cinema tickets to holidays.
- Birthday Bonus – We all have an extra holiday each year for our Birthday, a nice touch that we all appreciate.
- Personal Development – We are all encouraged to partake in courses/training that will help our current and future roles within Citrus. Suggestions are welcomed and we’re even looking into a course in the US for next year!
- Relaxed Atmosphere – Together, with the support from Andrea, we have created a casual relaxed atmosphere in our office. No topic is out of bounds as we literally talk about everything, being open and honest has allowed us to have a great working relationship.
Whether you are an employee or employer you can gain job satisfaction and encourage your colleagues to do the same. Remember, you spend too much time working to not enjoy it!
As we rapidly head towards our second anniversary, I grabbed Andrea for a quick chat to find out more about writing for estate agents. Where did her passion come from, how did Citrus Content start and what challenges and key trends do we face.
How did Citrus start?
I have always had a passion for property and interiors, but writing? My career took me down a different path until 4 years ago when I joined twitter. Here I shared my love for property and started to attract a following, this led to my first blog post. I was asked to write a guest post on my passion, incredibly it was for Rightmove. Over the next couple of years I was asked to write more and more, and realised two things; firstly, I loved it and more importantly, the industry wanted more. So two years ago, I grabbed my pen and paper and started to write as a profession.
Let’s face it, estate agents historically don’t have the best reputation and are renowned for being stuck in their traditional roots. I admit some agents are grasping onto their past with both hands but many are embracing the future and breaking the mould to emerge as a new breed of estate agents.
What are the challenges?
Estate agents are not marketers, designers or creative professionals but the business community and our technological society is asking them to be. They often find it hard to translate their knowledge and personality into content that emotes the reader. But being able to be the solution to this challenge is so rewarding.
Are there any key trends?
Like similar industries, traditionally estate agency content has been cold and corporate. This has changed, whether it’s down to social media or customer needs, the industry leaders seek warm and engaging content that speaks directly to their clients. We work hard to establish a tone of voice for each agency to highlight their individuality. I have created, what we fondly call, our Voice Document. This document is the foundation of everything we write and also means we can write numerous articles on the same subject and you can clearly identify which agent it was written for. Storytelling for estate agents is now very client centric, we focus on using words such as ‘you’ and ‘your’ rather than ‘we’ and ‘our’.
Estate agents are also fusing this new trend with traditional values. They want to be seen as not just based within the community but also part of it. There is a growing demand for editorial content which features local businesses and events. Blog posts, newsletters, and magazines featuring a community touch are a trend that again is growing. No matter whether we feature a local store, artisan, or product, we have to find a way of relating it to the agent or buying, selling, renting or letting a property.
We are required to be all things not just writers. Working with estate agents is fantastically creative; we are often required to be marketers, coming up with inventive ways to promote their business. Some clients require even more, we have written press releases, organized events and so much more.
How have things changed?
Every day I see a change in the industry and a growing acceptance that engaging content is a necessity not a luxury item. There is still a long way to go, as this acceptance is still very much a minority. This is not to criticize those that have not adapted the new trends, as a culture change in an industry never happens over night.
Looking to the future
There is definitely a change in customer perception, and an estate agent is no longer the most hated profession. I often say ‘There is nothing more powerful than words.’ Words are breaking down stereotypes, strengthening the client and agent relationship, aiding an agency to financial success and most importantly, changing how the industry operates.
I’m proud to be part of this incredible change and look forward to breaking many more moulds in the future. Writing for estate agents is anything but dull, it is often said when buying a house you think with your heart and your head. Passion, industry knowledge, and adaptability are key to our success at Citrus Content.
A little warning to our readers, I’m afraid this weeks Product of the Week is for children only! The Teepee Cabin Bed from Cuckooland is possibly the coolest bed that your little boy or girl will never get bored of! Add some fun and adventure to your child’s bedroom as you decide who will be the Cowboys and who will be the Indians.
Dutch designer Woood has created this beautiful children’s bed with matching bookcase and desk in this unique and on-trend teepee design. Made in Holland their highly skilled Dutch craftsmen create strong, contemporary furniture designs for every room in the home and especially unique childrens furniture for kids rooms – an area we at Cuckooland specialise in!
Fuel your child’s imagination from the moment they wake up and watch them as they create their own playful scenes with their friends, who are also sure to fall straight into character as soon as they step into the room. The simple but effective design with its neutral colours creates the perfect environment for little boys or girls allowing their bedroom to transform into a playroom or even the wild west!
Teepees originated as portable shelters used by nomadic tribes, and are most commonly associated with Native Americans. If you’re looking for an adventure-inspiring children’s bed with a slightly more fixed location, look no further than this stunning cabin design! The ultimate sleep station for mini explorers in the making, this bed is a wonderful way to bring a sense of the outside into your home. Made of solid, quality pine and white veneer, the neutral colour will suit any decor, and can easily be updated as your child grows and tastes change!
Cuckooland.com is a magical world of stylishly quirky homeware and unique & unusual gift ideas. A luxury lifestyle emporium showcasing an original collection of unique furniture & homeware; niche gifts and all things Wow, Weird and Wonderful… sourced by Zebarella and her team of buyers from the World’s freshest, brightest new Designers & Manufacturers.
Step inside Cuckooland and take a tour around their fabulously unique world and ultimate shopping experience.
As we get older we all need a 6 month check-up and I feel the same about the rest of my life. Sometimes even just 2 months when things are that hectic. Using the word “older” makes me sound old but I am most definitely not, no matter what my Fiancé says! Still holding on to being in my twenties for another few weeks I do feel that life changes quicker as you hit your twenties, then I imagine slows down again later in life, but we’ll see!
I’m not meaning to sound philosophical I just feel that since working, having a family and running a home I need to check on my life a lot more than I used to. For me, being happy is paramount to everything else, I find without that as my first check point there’s no point in looking any further. A quick review now again is healthy, here is mine.
So let’s go through my check up, over the past 6 months I have jumped back into working, this time as a Mum. Work also has a different meaning to me now, more of a purpose and more important than ever. I’m not religious or particularly superstitious but me finding Citrus or Citrus finding me, seems to be more than just coincidence. Good timing? Luck? Fate? Either way it’s happened and I’m squeezing every drop out of it!
In the short time that I have been working at Citrus Content I have already moved from being Andrea’s Personal Assistant to also writing articles and blogs. Somehow Andrea has managed to discover a passion and talent inside of me which, with her help, I’m slowly feeling confident enough to release. At a recent brand meeting I described my thoughts about Citrus and my role, the outcome of this words workshop brought up feelings that I had never really thought about in much depth. How many of us are proud of their job and love telling people what they do? I am! I think that says so much about Andrea, Citrus and our working relationship. Along with my job description my label at home has also changed from being just “Vic” I’m now “Mum”, a title which holds a whole world of pressure and responsibility. Luckily these feelings are completely eclipsed by the fun and love that also comes with being a Mum.
The past 6 months has also included a few anniversaries, our first Christmas as a family in our new home, Nico’s first birthday and our 2 year engagement anniversary. All of which made me almost wish away the year to experience the celebrations all over again! On a personal note, I have also been able to celebrate something that you all probably take for granted, I have just passed my driving test. After putting it off for almost 13 years my partner took charge and booked me my first 10 lessons, since then I haven’t looked back and somehow (god knows how) I managed to pass both my theory and practical test first time! This is a huge significant achievement for me as I let my fear of not being in control take over for so long. Now I have been given the gift of time, being able to drive has literally meant that I now have an extra couple of hours added to my day!
What are the results of my check up? After another crazy but blessed 6 months the defining moments in my life are simply stepping stones preparing me for what’s next to come, more work, more fun and more surprises. As we all know we can’t predict the future and I wouldn’t want to, I could never have imagined what was going to happen but it just makes me even more excited about the next 6 months.
How did your check up go?
Easter wouldn’t be Easter without the usual “egg” jokes and our Product of the Week blog is no different! Our eggs-tra special weekly feature includes 6 Egg Cups from the Easter Collection by At Home in the Country. Whilst the kids are enjoying their chocolate treats take a tour of the countryside with a friendly Hen, a fast talking Hare and a proud Robin in our eggs-travagant animal tale.
Rise and shine and start your day with the colourful and friendly mother hen. We like our eggs large and this porcelain egg cup can fit even the largest of eggs to really kick start your day!
Out of the woodland steps the strong Pheasant with it’s ornate colours, fighting off its natural predators to continue to lay between 8 and 12 eggs per clutch. Perfect for those freshly boiled eggs for all of the family.
We all know the tale about the hare and the tortoise but there’s no need to rush this Hare as he sits on his hind legs while you enjoy your breakfast or midday snack.
The lab lovers dream breakfast features the athletic playful black labrador. Being the most popular breed of dog these egg cups are sure to be a best seller all year round.
Answering the beautiful sounding call of the robin is our penultimate egg cup. Puffing out his red chest he asks if you have chosen your favourite egg cup yet?
And finally, man’s best friend has featured twice in our collection this time with the feisty and independent Scottie Dog. A lovely gift which like the rest of our egg cups are available with matching cups, saucers and other British countryside inspired tableware.
Clearly eggs-perts in Countryside tableware our Products of the Week are at home in this Easter Collection but can be used throughout the year with At Home in the Country’s beautifully made porcelain and fine bone china pieces.
Guy and Georgie Robinson have designed and produced their own ranges of home accessories, tableware and giftware for over 25 years but it wasn’t until 2012 when they decided to set up “At Home in the Country” selling their beautiful and unique products to country people and their homes.
Proud villagers and obvious countryside lovers Guy and Georgia introduce us to the village that has inspired their designs. “Farnley Tyas is a beautiful hilltop village, just south of Huddersfield and is surrounded by glorious fields and woodland. We love our village, the countryside and everything that comes with it.”
Their pieces can be found in some of the finest Palaces, Castles, Country Homes and Hotels across the UK including Kensington Palace, Balmoral and Longleat.
The sleek and timeless Cowrie Bowl from In-Spaces is our Product of the Week. We were drawn to this piece originally because of its simple design and unique name, Cowrie, which on further investigation is a shell of sea snails. Often rounded, porcelain-like shells, cowries are beautiful to look at and to handle much like the Cowrie Bowl.
Pearl or Aqua? Available in two ocean inspired colours for you to choose from each bowl can be used in your kitchen, bathroom or bedroom. Suitable for cold food only but we think these bowls could be used to add to your theme in your bathroom or to hold jewellery on your dresser.
Continuing the ocean theme to create these cowry inspired bowls epoxy is a applied in a wave design. Epoxy is a type of strong adhesive used for sticking things together and covering surfaces, in this piece a finley cast aluminium has been coated using epoxy.
Within a year IN-SPACES has secured its place as a leading e-commerce platform for interiors, gift and fashion. They have since launched In-Spaces Design Studio, focusing on 3D Printing, opened a Central London showroom, and founded In-Spaces PR and their In-Spaces Blog. The In-Spaces Blog includes Design, Architecture, Decor and Lifestyle to name a few.
In-Spaces are using their Central London Showroon to hold events and launch their featured brands to the public. Their aim is to recognise and understand the vision of these brands to create a buzz and help to get them noticed to the right people. Using their vast contact book they pride themselves on not only getting these brands recognised but also talked about by the most prestigious names in business.
Step inside the growing world of In-Spaces through their website, blog, pop-up stores and social media channels.
How retro are you? No matter what your style is our Product of the Week the Retro Light from Rothschild & Bickers is timeless! Beutifully described as, “sleek handblown glass with a modernist streamlined spun copper top” even just saying it slides off your tongue. Their pieces can also be found in Eat Sleep Live‘s new showroom where they accompany rustic handmade furniture and the best of British upholstery.
Rothschild & Bickers is one of the last glassworks that is still active in the UK where their glass is handblown. Their furnace glows throughout the night firing at a temperature of 1100C! Just half a century ago there were hundreds of similar studios now there are only around thirty, with Rothschild & Bickers being the only glassworks who focus their designs on lighting. Straight away as you view their collections you start to choose your favourite style, colour and shape, you may even envisage how they may look in your house! Their striking designs are all created by hand with different options of glass and colours for you to swoon over. Here are some creative ways of how the Retro Light has already been used (Interior by Lisa Burke Interiors and River Island, UK)
Behind the Glassworks
Despite the use of electricity in present day glassworks, the process and tools are much the same as when the craft first originated, which can be dated back to the Phoenicians on the Palestinian coast, around 50BC. The finished pieces provide a bridge between
the traditional and the contemporary, bringing ancient and Victorian processes to 21st century design and fittings.
“I love the design work,” says Rothschild. “But the fact that I know I am keeping a craft alive, and for a good reason, is what makes it worthwhile. “What’s more, glassblowing gives me the freedom to experiment with a fascinating material every day. I’m often surprised when the glass can do things we hadn’t thought were possible.”
Rothschild and Bickers have over twenty years of experience between them, they make the complex skill of glassblowing looks simple. A stick of colour is chosen, picked up on the end of a blowing iron and softened in a gas fired chamber known as the ‘glory hole’.
“Every piece that we create,” explains Rothschild, “whether it’s a bespoke commission or something from one of our signature collections, is an original. Each one is free blown and comes with its own tiny irregularities. It is impossible to imagine the many steps and techniques which go into producing each of our designs if you haven’t seen the process for yourself.”
Victoria Rothschild and Mark Bickers met at the Royal College of Art, London, while studying for Masters degrees in Applied Art Ceramic & Glass. They soon began working together, winning Worshipful Company of Glass and RSA awards. They set up Rothschild & Bickers in 2007 and moved to their present studio in Hertford in late 2011. The company is well known for its sophisticated and unique designs, but behind the lighting adorning stylish hotels, restaurants, bars, shops and homes across the UK, Europe, US, Asia and Australia, is a mission to keep a dying craft alive.
This week we have not only one but a whole Showroom of Products! Eat Sleep Live have brought their products to life in their new Showroom in Nottingham. As well as their own, handcrafted furniture on show they have some fabulous British upholstery, lighting & accessories.
We have visited Eat Sleep Live’s website many times and have even previously featured their Original Sideboard as our Product of the Week. Although shopping online is easy and can transport you to any shop in the world we are very excited to now be able to visit our favourite pieces in person! Eat Sleep Live have joined forces with several designers whose pieces all compliment their hand crafted range of furniture.
Tom Raffield’s designs have previously been featured as one of our “Products of the Week”, his beautiful carefully crafted lighting compliments Eat Sleep Live’s rustic and modern style. Similar to Eat Sleep Live, Rothschild & Bickers are passionate about what they make and are driven to ensure the processes and techniques that they use are kept within the UK’s manufacturing industry. All of their pieces are handmade to order using refined glassblowing skills. Henderson Russell design sofas and contemporary chairs, their aim is create “that little bit of heaven in your living room for that precious “me time” at the end of the day”. Fusing all of these pieces together Eat Sleep Live have covered all areas of interior design for your home.
Made from recalimed wood the Eat Sleep Live Showroom is a treat for your senses, feel the grain, enjoy the aroma and delight in the wonderful designs that they have created for you. We once described Eat Sleep Live as Nottingham’s best kept secret, well now everyone can see for themselves why we have fallen in love with their craftsmanship and individual pieces.
You are invited to visit Eat Sleep Live’s new Nottingham City Centre Showroom for a chat and hot drink while viewing their unique reclaimed wood furniture. See you there!