Beautiful Bespoke Paper Décor

Michaela Childs Founder of May Contain Glitter talks intricate paper garlands and giant flower backdrops to cool cake toppers, and stunning stationery with Toast.Life

From intricate paper garlands and giant flower backdrops to cool cake toppers, stunning stationery, and more, Toast.Life meets May Contain Glitter founder Michaela Childs to hear more about her beautiful, bespoke paper décor and to get her advice on what to consider if you’re planning some paper touches for your next do.

Glitter, glitter everywhere. Just the word alone somehow evokes a feeling of wonder, a sense of magic and a touch of PARTY. Glitter is joyful, nostalgic and always has a sparkling sense of occasion, which is just what one needs when hosting any event. And decorations of course, lots of gorgeous decorations, and one lady well versed in creating such beautiful décor is Michaela Childs, founder of May Contain Glitter  and designer and maker of unique paper decorations.

“It’s hard to say exactly when May Contain Glitter started, it was a hobby that grew into a business, and it has slowly evolved over the years” she smiles. “Born from a lifelong love of paper craft, pattern and glitter!” 

Michaela originally started out as a textile designer (which she still does now) and boasts over 10 years’ experience, but as the job is very computer-based, she found that she was almost always working on something handmade on the side…

“I’ve always loved playing with paper and shiny things, so I guess it was kind of inevitable! I started making things for myself and for friends, but then I opened an Etsy shop, and then a shop on notonthehighstreet quickly followed”

Previously known as Comeuppance, Michaela changed the name of the company to the joyful ‘May Contain Glitter’  in January 2017, in order to better reflect the nature of what she was doing. With an emphasis on bespoke and personalised items, her collection consists of lovingly handmade paper creations, from wedding stationery and table décor to oversized wall flowers, gorgeous garlands, sparkly cake toppers, and so much more.

“The first name never really felt right but I just couldn’t think of anything new. I wanted it to have the word glitter in it, but I didn’t want anything too twee, and as soon as I thought of ‘May Contain Glitter’ I knew it was the right one!” she beams

“It perfectly sums up what I do, and it’s also part legal disclaimer because no matter how hard I try even the non-glittery things that I make have a few specks on them!”

May Contain Glitter Detail  Paper Florals

I ask Michaela to describe her work and she answers with the words - ‘colourful, sparkly and fun’ – which sounds pretty fabulous to me. She works with paper because it’s easy to work with, relatively cheap and it’s also recyclable and biodegradable, and she’s jolly good at it too.

Practice makes perfect, as they say, and Michaela’s beautiful, intricate work is a perfect example of this. Her handmade flowers are beautiful little pops of carefully-made colour, which make up her gorgeous decorations, garlands, wreaths and more, and can even be worn as button holes or corsages, or simply hung singularly from the ceiling for a really striking look. Her cake toppers are also things of beauty - carefully hand cut names adorned with complex flowers and of course – plenty of glitter. 

“I would say that repetition and practice is key!” she beams.

 Maycontainglitter Placecards

May Contain Glitter Collection

Maycontain Glitter Collection

Maycontain Glitter


Also in Michaela’s repertoire are some absolutely stunning paper flower backdrops; vast spreads of beautiful, colourful paper flowers that would easily cover a wall instantly creating wow factor, not to mention the ultimate photobooth background. Then there are her gorgeous paper birds, bunting, tassels and more, and some stunning stationery too.

“I would say the cake toppers are the most popular, followed by the flowers, and I do well with my card range too” she explains. “I think there will always be a place for paper and it adds a sense of occasion to any celebration, and it’s a lovely keepsake too, one that gives the recipient a flavour of what’s to come”

 Colourful Floral Wall

Blue Flower Wall

May Contain Glitter

Michaela believes that her beautiful decorations ‘add a little touch of whimsy’, but in fact they do so much more than that. They add style, beauty and wonder, a sense that you are somewhere special, enjoying something beautiful that someone has painstakingly and lovingly made by hand. Whether it’s a big birthday party, an intimate dinner or a lavish wedding – Michaela’s paper creations work wonderfully in all manner of situations and add a touch of magic and a sprinkle of love wherever they go.

“Most of the larger installations I’ve done have been for corporate events, but some of the most creative and fun have been making something bespoke for a wedding or event. Usually when a client comes to me they’ll have an idea of what they want, I’ll then put a mood board together of how I think I can interpret it and give them some idea of cost” she explains.

“I once made glittering chandeliers and flowers almost bigger than a person! And hundreds of brightly coloured hanging paper flowers that were hung above a grass catwalk! I recently made some giant flowers with eyes in the middle of them, I had no idea how I was going to make them work when I first got the brief, I must have made about five or six prototypes before I was happy with them. The largest of them was over a metre wide and I had to hang them on the wall of my shared studio to store them, they absolutely terrified my studio mates, it felt like they were watching you! When they were finally hung up in the venue they looked really good with the rest of the 60s psychedelic backdrop!”

 Yellow Florals

White Wall May Contain Glitter

And so, having worked on events of all shapes and sizes, and even created giant flowers with eyes (!), I am curious what advice Michaela would give to anyone considering commissioning or buying some paper art and/or decorations for their next event.

“The most important issue is time. I get a lot of last minute enquiries, but handmade items take a long time to make and I have to fit them around my other orders and clients. I’ve never had to turn away a project yet, but there have been quite a few all-nighters!’ she smiles

Because of course, Michaela’s line of work involves time and lots of it. When making anything so beautifully detailed by hand, meticulous work is required, and of course the result is always worth it. But with so much time and effort involved - does this make it a very expensive process for the client, I wonder?

“Unfortunately, the work is very time consuming and some of the large items use a lot of materials too, so it can become expensive. That’s why I’ve been doing workshops so that people can learn how to make them themselves!” 

Ah yes, Michaela’s brilliant workshops. These take place in different locations in and around East London and are designed to be informal, relaxed, and simple enough for all abilities. Book online, pitch up and you can learn how to make a truly beautiful paper flower crown, a gorgeously glittery piñata, a wow factor giant paper flower and more, all by your very own hand. 

“My workshops are for anybody. A lot of people just want to have a go, and others have an event in mind. I’ve done a few hen-do’s where the hens have made the decorations for the wedding!” she smiles, oozing enthusiasm. 

“Next I am planning to do some online how-to’s and digital downloads. Oh, and hopefully get my new range done too!”  

If you’d like to work with Michaela you can find her contact details and more on May Contain Glitter’s page in Toast.Life’s Little Black Book. For more information about her workshops visit her page in our Little Black Book

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