The story behind…. Our Mexican tin decorations

The story behind our decorations is pretty simple but goes back quite far so I’ve to drag it out of the dark and dusty closet that is my memory.

I have an amazing and very adventurous sister Alice who lives and works in Mexico City. I, of course, love going to visit her and, along with the rest of the colour loving world, have totally fallen in love with the vibrant colours that infuse the culture and texture of the country.

Whilst Deja Ooh was in its infancy Katy and I really wanted to find a product that we didn’t need to make. A kind of light relief from our day to day work in the studio but also to see if it would be worth adding in a few imported products into our range. So after looking at a number of options we stumbled across some wonderfully bright and colourful Mexican pressed tin folk art.

Sheets of tin have been shaped, stamped, punched, painted and cut into a wide variety of decorative and functional artworks since the 1500’s. Known in Mexico as hojalatalamina or lata, it has been developed into in an infinite number of items from large 3D star lamp shades to intercut nichos, small box picture frames that show your favourite deity or loved one.  

Katy and I however are not ones for tradition and so I called up Alice and asked her if she knew where we would be best looking. …… was the answer and within a few weeks I was on a virtual tour of the most amazing artisan market and being introduced via skype to Sr Pina (Mr Pineapple. No joke his actual name!). Like kids in a sweet shop we put together our favourites and edited it down to our first two sets; Mermaids and Swallows. The collection of Unique Christmas Decorations was born.


Our Tropical Trio came the following year and has been our best seller so far….

We also got a lot of feedback at fairs and markets requesting slightly more traditional versions and so I decided to design, from scratch, our set of baubles. Taking some classic patterns from other Mexican objects and merging them with a traditional Bauble shape they are as closest to tradition and we are willing to go.

We also snuck in a little heart design….


This year we have added to the collection again with a Flamingo, Watermelon and Unicorn. Yes, I know we are moving away from a tradition and totally falling in to a trend, but I really loved designing these three little beauties and they will be all over my tree this year.


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