Sunday, 7 December 2014

Our Mug Blog

Its been a while since I had a chance to blog - been dead busy with Christmas and new stuff for the New Year so haven't had a chance to show some of the fabulous photos of our products which our loyal customers have sent in.  If you haven't seen it already check out our blog  basically our mugs are photographed all over the world.  Its fab and never ceases to amaze me where they are taken.  We've had photos from the Panama Canal, Bora Bora, All over Australia and even up the CN Tower!! Love it!  Hope your all getting sorted for Christmas........

Thursday, 23 October 2014

Wotmalike New Christmas Cards 14

Geordie Christmas Cards Tyne of The Year Newcastle Phrases

Sleigh Bells Ring Buggar Lugs Christmas Card by Wotmalike

Northern Soul Mate Christmas Card by Wotmalike

Mersey Christmas Scouse Christmas Card

Merry Chuffin Christmas Yorkshire Christmas Card
Soooo all our fabulous Christmas cards have gone on sale on tinternet.  We are really happy with this range and the paper stock they are printed on.  They are original and fresh using hand drawn fonts and bright colours whilst still being identifiable as our cards.  We HEART them......

Thursday, 11 September 2014

Sorry I've been busy

Well! We used to import signs into the UK from China - took ages, wasn't ethical, cost loads by the time you added on all the additional costs.  SO I tried to find a supplier in the UK - no luck - everyone was dead expensive or crap. So we have bought the kit to produce signs in house and they are fabulous - slightly rustic, made of wood, made by us AND we can put anything on them.  Had some funny requests already (who am I to question).  Loads of wholesale orders flying out with a few new big projects in the pipeline.  Including me being asked to design for a huge sporting event (oooh - can't tell you who or when or why just yet).  Then its Christmas - all our Christmas stock is now in the warehouse (the gnomes are all busy packing up big big orders)!! Our expansion continues with the National brand - eeeeh just enough time for wine (occasionally)!

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

My New Geordie Poetry Range!! YIPPEEEE

Geordie Poetry Cards Wine
The collaboration between creative writer Matt Reilly from Low Fell and Jo Burrows (Bykerlass) strangely enough from Byker, created this amazing range of cards and gifts which have already been purchased by most of the leading retailers in the North East.
The range is printed on heavy 300gsm card is larger in size than our regular cards and is printed with a satin finish. The cards are pure quality for both design and wording any recipient wouldn’t be disappointed. They are available to purchase at £2.75 free P&P from our website.
Geordie Poetry Cards Bonny Lad Bonny Lass, Bykerlass Matt Reilly

Here’s some info about Jo and Matt
How long have you been working on this range? Jo: Well I have to say that we initially talked about this idea in October 2013 but I was up to my neck in Christmas orders so we started properly in January. Matt has been really quick to respond to briefs but I have had to fit this range in around my other products and business activity.
Matt: I have written rhymes for cards for friends and family for years, and have been an admirer of Jo’s cards and gifts for a long time, so it has been great to bring those two things together in our collaboration on this range.
Is this range going to develop further? Jo: We have more products and cards in the same ilk which are lovely and will be ready for Christmas (watch this space). We also have another region of dialect inspired poems to publish too! (We’ve been really busy)
Matt: In a word ... Yes! It’s a really fun range to work on, and Jo and I work really well together, so I’m looking forward to developing this range (and the other regions) even further.
Whose work do you most admire in your given field?
Jo: I love Caroline Gardner. I love the way she stays classy and keeps innovating whilst everyone else is behind her trying to keep up. I really try to model myself on her each time my work gets “interpreted” it makes me dig deep and innovate with new products and ideas.
Matt: I have two inspirations when it comes to writing rhymes for cards: the comedian and writer Spike Milligan, and Purple Ronnie’s creator Giles Andreae. I’ve always loved the type of poetry that appeals to everyone, from eight-year-olds to 108-year-olds, rather than the really cryptic stuff I read at college. For that reason, I wouldn’t call myself a poet. I’m a creative writer who loves to write daft rhymes! Even so, I take my work very seriously.
What’s the most difficult part of creating the cards?
Jo:  For me its doing Matts lovely words justice and choosing the right look and feel - I still need my customers to recognise my design style whilst offering something new and innovative.
Matt: It might sound obvious, but the most difficult part for me is finding the right words. I can write rhymes quickly and easily, but it’s never my aim to just write a rhyme. I’m always trying to write the perfect rhyme, with the perfect rhythm. I’m really happy when I find that rhyme and rhythm combination. I love all of the cards Jo and I have collaborated on, but there are a couple of them that I’m really proud of.
What is your usual creative process?
Matt: Jo will send me a creative brief, outlining a Geordie word or phrase that she wants to use on a card. Then it’s ‘thinking cap’ time! I approach the writing in different ways depending on where I am: I usually jot things down in a notebook, but sometimes things come to you in the most random of places. One rhyme came to me almost fully formed when I was sat on the Metro, as it crossed the River Tyne, so I quickly typed it as a message on my phone and sent it to myself! When I’m happy with the rhyme then I’ll send it across to Jo so she can work her design magic!
Jo: I usually look at the words and match a look or image to the words - if its a celebration the artwork needs to be joyous for instance.  I usually have a specific look in my mind before I start designing a new range.
What draws you to creating these regional dialect cards?
Jo:   I love my accent and love quirky words and love being able to celebrate accents (not just Geordie) in a positive way - being proud of where you are from is a great British trait.
Matt: I spent my early years in Manchester, so when I moved up to north-east England it was like learning a new language. As a writer, you can’t help but fall in love with a region that has such a rich vocabulary all of its own. When you look at them, Geordie words and phrases lend themselves perfectly to rhyming. I feel like these rhymes are my chance to pay tribute to the place I now call home.

Click here to see Matt’s website – – he is available for commissions and collaborations.
Geordie Poetry Cards Baby Boy Bairn Baby Girl Bairn

Tuesday, 29 July 2014

Rosie and Radish

Geordie Design Love Rosie and Radish
Had a GREAT week last week seeing customer being told how fabulous my work is in the sunshine with my Mam - eating cake and drinking coffee! Whats not to like??   Had a chance to meet up with two fellow designers who have an amazing brand called Rosie and Radish.  We are totally kindred spirits and have a mutual appreciation of each others work.  Check them oot at

Tuesday, 15 July 2014

New Biz card

Geordie Cards, Geordie Mugs, Bykerlass New Logo
So next week is a big big week for me and our biz. Presentations to big big buyers (Dragons Den and the Apprentice meets Geordie Shore)....  so I did a new biz card in honor usually I NEVER have them as I think they are a bit crap but thought as I should get some done.  I think they look fine without being corporate. Oooooh fingers xd it will all go well...

Tuesday, 24 June 2014

Yorkshire Speak Range

Yorkshire Speak range by Wotmalike Ey Up Luv
Yorkshire Speak range by Wotmalike Mardy Bum
Our fabulous Yorkshire Speak range is now in loads of lovely shops all across Yorkshire. Its been in production since January this year so it seems like its been about for a really long time. 
Had lots of dialect help from fellow designer Dawn Machell as she is a Yorkshire lass and was pushing for us to do a Yorkshire range.
The influences for this range are pretty apparent. It combines lovely retro colours and textures along with hand drawn fonts. It is stylish and humorous together. As ever the whole range was made in the UK.
It consists of high quality melamine coasters, beautiful large ceramic mugs and cards. There is a textile element being added so watch this space!

We HEART this range totally its REYT GUD!

Sunday, 15 June 2014


Geordie Mugs Geordie Cards and Gifts the best!!

Geordie Mugs Geordie Cards and Gifts the best!!
Had a big spike in twitter activity yesterday.  Steph McGovern from BBC Breakfast business tweeted a picture of loads of my cards she had bought in Newcastle.  She has 75,000 followers so I got some really nice tweets about my work (ahhhh) nice to be appreciated.  Chris Ramsey the comedian is a friend of a friend and he liked his Best Daddy in Hebburn card (in the TV show he became a Dad)!
Soooo I'm now available for red carpet events should anyone wish to hire me!! haha!

Wednesday, 11 June 2014

Jingle bells.....

It's beginning to feel a lot like Christmas - well not really outside but inside we are surrounded by snowy scenes, penguins and polar bears.  We are just putting together our Christmas 14 product line up and its looking mighty good!  hohoho!
We also have an exciting new range coming out very soon too and have collaborated with an amazingly talented writer to produce this jaw dropping collection (honestly its that good) even our printers who NEVER comment on any work said how much they all love it!  Watch this space.....
Geordie Gifts by Wotmalike Ltd

Saturday, 24 May 2014

Best Dad in........................

Best Dad in Liverpool Father's Day Card

Best Dad in Manchester Father's Day Card

Best Grandad in Newcastle Father's Day Card

Best Daddy in The World Father's Day Card

Best Grandad Dad Daddy in YOUR CHOICE - great Geordie Gifts
Put my BEST DAD cards on sale this week and orders went mental! Been processing orders all day today.  Loads of big big wholesale orders as well as retails orders. Very busy but wouldn't have it any other way.

Tuesday, 13 May 2014

Interview: Geordie Cards and Gifts Designer Jo Burrows by North East Gifts

So Jo our designer did an interview with North East Gifts this weekend. They have a great relationship as Jo is now designing bespoke products just for them. 

Here is a link to the interview and here it is below!

Geordie Cards and Gifts designer Joanne Burrows, also known as Byker Lass, has created a range of products that has received global recognition and changed the way a lot of people send greetings cards.

Her focus on creating products that speak to a specific region of the UK, whilst avoiding stereotypes and cliches, has allowed her to remain at the top of her game as the most well-known and respected designer of regional-inspired and design-led cards and gifts.
Jo’s Geordie, Northumbrian, Calm Doon and Mam ranges can be found here at North East Gifts and we have worked in collaboration with her on a range of our own exclusive Mackem Cards, our Workie Ticket keyring range and more products coming in 2014.
We caught up with Jo to find out where it all began, where she gets her inspiration and what’s happening next for this “Byker Lass Done Good”…

Byker Newcastle
You go by the name of Byker Lass – how was growing up in that area of Newcastle?

I grew up originally in ‘old’ Byker – terraced houses with back yards, outside toilets and no bathrooms – til I was 11.  Our house was then demolished and we moved to ‘new’ Byker, inside the Byker Wall.  I love the community spirit, which I know is present even today as my parents still live there. I have very fond memories of growing up and the vibrant people I met and still know now from Byker.

Did you always have creative flair and was it an early career choice for you?

Apparently I could use scissors at age 2, by age 4 I could knit and my dolls were the best dressed in Byker. I never studied art at school but got A-grades for O’Level and A’Level just by sitting the exams.  My first proper painting at age 16 sold for £300! So I knew I was on to a winner.
I love to paint and have shown my work at an exhibition at the Biscuit Factory in Newcastle. I would actually love to be a sculptress at some point in my life.

Jo Burrows Geordie Cards
Before you got into designing your own products, what had your design career consisted of?

My first proper job after University, where I did textile design, was for Dewhirt Lorien in Blyth as a gift designer on the company’s Boots account.  I then went on to design for Marks and Spencer, creating textile-related gifts before leaving to go travelling by taking on a job as cabin crew for an airline.  I never really had the money or opportunity to go anywhere until then. I worked for an airline in the Middle East and had a ball.
I then got what I considered to be the best job in the world with a cruise company that was looking for someone with design experience to work as a travel researcher. I had the enviable job of travelling all over the world looking at destinations for cruise ships, taking photos and writing illustrating and creating brochures.
I was in New York when I met Nick, who is now my husband. Nick was working on board the cruise ship Oriana. We got married, had a son and I got representation by big agents in New York and in London. I worked freelance as a surface pattern designer until eventually specialising in stationery design.

What was it that sparked your interest in designing Geordie cards and mugs?

A owner of a shop in Tynemouth asked me to design some cards for their store. I put some Geordie dialect designs onto cards and they sold out instantly.  I then talked a mug manufacturer into printing some Geordie mugs for me, even though the numbers were very low at the time.
My love for dialect and good commercial design are a perfect match I love making cards for Geordies as it’s so close to my heart. In the early days, my mobile phone number was on the back of the cards and I got calls from other shops asking me to supply them.  The domain name Geordie Cards was taken, so I registered Geordie Mugs and launched my own website!

Geordie Card All Reet - Cards For Geordies
What was the first item in the range?

It was “All Reet” Geordie card, which was printed on my printer from Argos!  I started the business with just a few hundred pounds and I feel in hindsight that this was I good thing. If I’d had loads of money to support the launch of the business, I think looking back that I would have made mistakes – especially with products.
I have come to know the market and grown organically. I haven’t borrowed money but have focused on building great relationships with my customers and suppliers, most of which I would class as friends.

Your range of Geordie gifts has grown and grown – is there anything you’re particularly proud of?

I love the Blaydon Races 150th anniversary stuff. I was in London on the 9th June 2012 and went to a big Geordie celebration at a pub called the Gun Makers, which is owned by a Geordie.  The BBC choir were there singing Geordie songs and my Geordie Mugs products were everywhere. It was the first time I got a lot of love face-to-face from customers.  It was fab!

Had Ya Horses Geordie Card
How do you keep up with all the popular Geordie phrases and how they develop over the years?

Sometimes just listening to people on the Metro makes me laugh and will trigger an idea.  If the most obvious ways of using expressions don’t work, you have to find an angle to fit an occasion. For example, the phrase ‘had ya horses‘ is well known in the North East. I used for a Geordie card and I often think ‘would I want someone to send me that?’ but with good use of design it works. I only create products that promote the various regions in a positive and non-stereotypical way.

You’ve also ventured into Mackem cards, with North East Gifts, as well as Northumbrian, Scouse, Manchester, Cumbrian and most recently Yorkshire – do you think every area should have a range of cards and gifts that speak that area’s language?

Yes, definitely, but I respect that I’m not an expert in other regions’ dialects, so listen to experts and locals for advice.  Fortunately, within the areas I cover, I have either family or really good friends who have kept me right about certain words and phrases.
Scouse Stuff is great brand for us as we have a design agent in Liverpool who also owns several shops and is really on-the-ball with Liverpool expressions, so our Scouse cards and gifts have gone down really well.
Yorkshire Yorkshire, our latest range, is a series of Yorkshire cards and gifts that was inspired by a friend and fellow designer, Dawn Machell – she is a Yorkshire lass and was instrumental in putting the phrases together.

Geordie Mackem Card Happy Birthday Mam
March was a massive month for North East Gifts what with Mother’s Day and the lack of availability of Mam cards and gifts – were you inspired to create a Mam range by not being able to find Mam cards in shops?

There can be inverted snobbery about dialect but I have a Mam, and most of my friends have a Mam, so I decided to create a range of Mam cards that would suit different demographics and tastes. It was nice knowing that loads of Mams around the UK, not just Geordie Mams as we stock shops in Wales and Northern Ireland too, would be opening a card designed by me on Mother’s Day.

Father’s Day is next on the greetings cards calendar – is there less of a market for North East Dad cards and gifts with Dad being a more widely used term?

It’s really hard to design for men and gifts in general – I know this from my previous career history.  I always thought ‘Fatha’ was derogatory so I haven’t really gone down that route. Father’s Day has never been as big as Mother’s Day for us – I do have a couple of tricks up my sleeve though! Some nice new Geordie Father’s Day cards which will be hitting the shops very soon!

Geordie Mug Australia
Do you have a lot of interest from Geordies abroad and other North East ex pats?

Yes, and I love the fact that we get photos of people all over the world with their Geordie Mugs.  My favourites are the ones in Australia but also love the mug in the Panama Canal and the CN Tower! We don’t post overseas but fortunately North East Gifts do, so its nice we can direct ex pats over to there.
People are passionate about Newcastle, especially when they are away from they place. The Tyne Bridge has a huge pull to us all so a Geordie gift that remind them of home are a nice way to remember – especially something like Geordie City as it features some great landmarks.

Will there be a new range for Christmas this year?

I’m working on Christmas at the moment and it looks lush.  I love Christmas and am known for my Christmas cards – so much so I have designed Christmas cards for most of the major department stores in the UK and America.
There will be new really innovative products this year we are really going to push the range out with really stylish original design led Geordie gifts and of course fabulous Geordie Christmas Cards.

What else is next for you as a designer and Wot Ma Like as a business?

Geordie Gifts
It’s lovely now to be asked to work with creative and original businesses and collaborate on products and ideas. Our relationship with North East Gifts goes from strength to strength because of a mutual respect for each other’s talents. I can’t wait for the newly designed kitchen boards to go on sale. I have a sample in my house and all my friends are badgering me for one already! That is always a good sign that something will do really well.
It’s also nice to use premium materials and create employment by keeping manufacturing in the North East. All of our products are now UK made and 90% are made in the North East.
Business wise, we have another region up our sleeves and also a national brand which has already got huge interest just from initial showings with design agents. We have delayed the launch date due to being mad busy with other regions and obviously it costs a lot to manufacture enough stock to supply hundreds of shops.

Tuesday, 29 April 2014

Blaydon Races Tea Towel 2014

Blaydon Races Tea Towel Great for Geordie Gifts
Yessss! our new 2014 Blaydon Races Tea Towels are now in stock. New updated version of the 2012 anniversary tea towel brought right up to date and back at request of our lovely customers. £7.99 Free P&P LARGE SIZE HIGH QUALITY MADE IN THE NORTH EAST!!!!!

Monday, 21 April 2014

You shall have a fishy on a little dishy....

Fishy on A Dishy - Geordie Gifts by Bykerlass

You shall have a fishy on a little dishy.... Managed to get something non work done this weekend - I made paper mache bowls, guilded them in gold leaf and did a little fishy illustration for each. They look lovely and it was great doing something with pens and paint for a change! Back to the coal face tomorrow X

Thursday, 17 April 2014

Want to paint

So when I grow up I'd like to paint pictures a lot and do paper mache sculpture. Never seem to have time to do anything like that these days I draw all day long but I never get to be really messy and paint - I'm itching to paint perhaps this easter weekend I might even get the opportunity........
who knows???

Friday, 11 April 2014

Key rings and Key to viral blogging

I knocked up some keyring designs this week for my friends at North East Gifts. Really like the Workie ticket one - based on old ticket designs.  They are only 99p from which is fab!  Then something awesome happened my biz got featured in a blog by whatculture (click on the image to see the article) and it WENT VIRAL!! Currently has been viewed 404,000 times and facebooked 12,500 times!! Can you believe it - first I knew was when I saw huge amounts of web traffic coming in then loads of orders! Many thanks to Nina Cresswell the journalist for mentioning me!Woohoo!! Another good week over! yeehaa!

Tuesday, 1 April 2014

Chucky Egg

Geordie Easter Gifts and Cards for Geordies

Eeeeh chucky egg - we love a bit of bright sunshine and daffodils. Easter is just round the corner.  How lovely!

Saturday, 29 March 2014

Running a Successful Biz

Geordie gifts by  Geordie Mugs
This week I learned two things.
1.  Blatantly copying someones design style is in my opinion theft - (not my work I'm talking about btw) I saw an example of good design blatantly ripped off by someone with some design software.  Incidently having design software does not make a designer. Each "real" designer has their own handwriting and has spent many years developing this style.  Karma is a bitch so I just hope it comes knocking to those who deserve it.

2. Social Media - great but not as good as "Great Products and Innovative Design"

Facebook likes are not a reflection on how successful a business is. Many of the leading greeting card publishers today who sell tens of thousands of cards each month have very few facebook likes - they are spending their time on good innovative design and developing and establishing relationships with buyers! I do believe in social media but sales are a better way of measuring success in my opinion!

It has actually been a GREAT week - not moaning honestly just wanting to make a point!!

Saturday, 15 March 2014

New Website!! Woo Hoo

Cards4Geordies and Geordie Gifts 

Lots to celebrate this week! First of all I (Jo designer aka bykerlass) have been given the all clear after enduring years of chemotherapy for an auto immune condition so that was GREAT NEWS.  Alongside the launch of our all new singing and dancing website.  It's totally brilliant and includes intuitive shopping - we are totally loving it as are our customers.  It was definitely worth all the effort to get it up and running.  Then we got a retweet mention by Lauren Laverne on twitter have a look (she has almost 300,000 followers). Sales are going really well, new products are being added and a new range is about to hit the shops!  Happy Happy Happy! (just like Pharrell)

Monday, 24 February 2014

Mam Stuff on Sale now!

Geordie gifts by the Geordie Gifts company Geordie Mugs
Mam range now on sale - dead happy got loads of new stockists - even down in Wales where they also have Mam's!

Thursday, 13 February 2014

Its Mam not Mum

Geordie Gifts, GeordieGifts
Not even Valentines Day and I'm already finalising the marketing for my Mam range!  AND bizarrely I have been thinking about Christmas production this year already!! I do feel for those poor people who are flooded who just want their homes back who don't really care if its Valentines day or not.

Monday, 27 January 2014

North East Gifts

Geordie Gifts and Cards for Geordies
New collection of Mackem cards (thats cards for those folk from Sunderland) are out end of these week available exclusively through its dead exciting!!

Wednesday, 22 January 2014

2014 Mantra

Geordie gifts by the Geordie Gifts company Geordie Mugs
Sooooo 2014 has started and it's already been a very busy year so far. I am all about having a positive frame of mind this year and not allowing others inabilities/inadequacies or negative actions have an impact on my goals. It's going to be a MEGA year!!

Monday, 13 January 2014

New Telephone Number - how posh!

Geordie Gifts
Well we've got a new telephone number. We had to get a 0845 number as we may move the business at some point and needed a number which can come with us wherever we move too!  Just a very productive trip to Top Drawer where I met my lovely agent and discussed new projects.  Just finished a whole range of cards under licence for a North East based company so its all busy but good busy!

Saturday, 4 January 2014

Northern Soul

Geordie Gifts
Happy New Year! Had load's of biz changes lately including working with a fulfillment house now for all my order processing which is great and a giant leap into the big league.  My lovely hubby Nick is now working alongside me so and will be helping to grow the business! Here is one of my new designs - Northern Soul is having a revival apparently! It's all good!  - here's to 2014!