Honeybees, unlike other species, don’t hibernate over winter, but they are quite inactive and do spend most of their time in the hive to keep warm. As from April, when the Spring flowers bloom and the weather begins to warm up, honeybees start collecting pollen again ready to make into honey. To celebrate the re-emergence of the British honeybee, here are our top ten honey-related picks.
1. Honey hand cream, Neal’s Yard
Made with moisturising organic honey and orange essential oil to nourish the skin and lift the spirits, this hand cream will not only care for your hands but also help save the bees who contributed to making it. Each year, Neal’s Yard donate £10,000 from product sales to bee-related projects, as the numbers of British honeybees are declining. £10, available from Cotswold Trading.
2. Honey lily candle, beefayre
This little candle has a delicious honeyed floral scent, with mellow vanilla notes, and comes in a glass holder with a botanical illustration of a bee. Made from 100% natural plant wax , it’s hand poured and has a 25 hours burn time. The candle is made in England by beefayre, a company inspired by nature and the plight of the honeybee. Beefayre helps our ailing bee population by donating 3% of its profits to bee conservation. £7.50, available from Annabel James.
3. Blue honey plate, Katie Spragg
We love the story behind this quirky bone china plate, made in Stoke on Trent and illustrated by designer Katie Spragg. In 2012, the beekeepers from Alsace were bemused when bees started producing blue, red, yellow and brown honey. They discovered that a nearby plant was processing waste from a factory that produced M&Ms, and the bees had been feeding on the coloured sweets, tinting their honey. The plate costs £25, available from In-Spaces.
4. Natural beeswax candles, Nook
These hand-dipped, natural candles are made in England, and are of course made from the wax made by honeybees to hold their honey. As such, the candles have a delicious gentle, natural honey scent. They come in various sizes, and are all sold in pairs which are joined at the wick to be cut with scissors. Prices from £6.50, available from Nook.
5. Honey felt lampshade, Desinature
This intricate lampshade is inspired by the honeycomb in a beehive, and gives a warm, glowing light to the room. It’s made from high premium 100% wool felt, which has been dyed using environmentally-friendly inks, and is designed and made in Britain. It’s available in three colours, grey, yellow and natural, and is priced at £28, available from Great British Designs.
6. Honey bear, Rachel Elliot Glassworks
This cute bear is made from from a single piece of chunky 10mm thick clear float glass that has been precision cut to shape using a water jet cutting machine before being screen-printed by hand in black enamel and hand painted with traditional amber silver stain. The finished piece is waterproof and resistant to sunlight, so is perfect for display on a sunny windowsill. Priced at £50, available from Rachel Elliott Glassworks.
7. Pappeline honey mustard vanilla runner rug
This striking runner rug is inspired by a honeycomb design, and comes in three sizes. Amazingly, it’s woven from environmentally certified plastic, so it’s very hardwearing in addition to being dust and dirt repellent, as well as water and UV resistant. It’s fully washable, and can even be used outside. Prices start at £62, available from Cloudberry Living.
8. Organic honey and lid, Whisk Hampers
This beautifully-presented gift set includes a silver honey lid Culinary Concepts, which will also fit a standard jam jar. It’s also supplied with a jar of organic blossom honey. £18.50, available from Whisk Hampers.
9. Beekeeper cushion, Lush Designs
Printed in duck egg blue and salmon pink, this attractive scatter cushion has a naive design of a beekeeper with a smoker, bees and hives in a country garden scene. The reverse side of the cushion features a matching bees in the garden pattern. £30 from One Brown Cow.
10. Honey bee drizzler, Annabel James
This delicate spiral shaped honey drizzler is designed to drip honey onto your waiting toast with the minimum of effort and mess. It’s topped with a little silver honey bee, and costs £12.50 from Annabel James as before.
If you’re keen to encourage more bees into your garden, then check out our guide to creating a bee friendly garden.