Hidden Gems

When you have had to change your hairstyle every few weeks to hide the clumps cut out in order to remove chewing gum, you become adept at altering your appearance. Since her early teens Hannah had continually changed her appearance until she eventually achieved the ideal look-invisibility. The bullying stopped but the price was high. Hannah was lost under layer upon layer of camouflage.

She survived school and gained her GCSEs. After her last exam she skipped off the premises and never looked back. She had no desire to go to college; education had been more about endurance and stealth rather than growth and development. School had been exhausting and Hannah felt that she was too young to feel that weary.

Not knowing what she wanted to do but painfully aware that she needed to contribute to the household, she registered with an employment agency. The agency, impressed with the positive feedback, always had an assignment for her. Hannah just did what came naturally, she blended in. For the first time in her life she felt that she had an identity-that of “the temp”.

One year, on the approach to Christmas, the assignments dried up and Hannah sought out seasonal opportunities. She gained temporary employment working in the warehouse of a world famous department store. During the induction day the new recruits were shown a welcome video introducing the many customer services offered by the store. One of which included gift wrapping any and all  items bought by their customers…including a helicopter. Hannah experienced a light bulb moment and a fragment of that light entered  a chink in her armour -spotlighting a creative desire.

Two years later Hannah signed a twelve month contract on a small shop to let-the humble beginnings of her gift wrapping dream. She had discovered a niche for her camouflaging skills-wrapping gifts so that they looked anything other than what they actually were. The helicopter, memories of her Mum’s penchant for wrapping gifts in empty cereal boxes so as to keep the recipient guessing and the concept of piñatas, had all inspired her to develop a bespoke service for those who enjoyed surprising others.


‘Hidden Gems is aptly named. Not only is it nestled away off the beaten track it also offers the kind of customised gift wrapping service that will leave you pondering why you got so excited about bird print paper and foil bows! This shop is worthy of a visit, if only to peruse the wonderful boxes designed to keep them guessing. This is a place where you can let your imagination run wild. The most obvious of items can be hidden in such a way that the lucky recipient will think that they have been given a gift within a gift. When asked about her favourite order to date Hannah Roberts, creator of Hidden Gems, did not hesitate to describe an important piece of jewellery hidden within a sky blue cow. It is clear from speaking with Hannah that she is passionate about creating the right wrapping and will take time to talk to each customer about their gift, the recipient and the reaction that they are hoping for. The next time that you want to make a memorable gesture, be sure to visit Hannah at Hidden Gems.‘  Out ‘n’ About- 5/5 

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Amanda Bird

Amanda Bird

Amanda has always thought of herself as an armchair traveller, and since early childhood books and stories have provided the portal to other worlds. Her love of reading sparked a passion for writing and she has been writing stories since... a very long time ago! She now lives in Hove, and the view allows space for her imagination to roam.
Amanda Bird

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