Family traditions | Handing down joy

Family traditions | Handing down joy

A recent visit to my sister Alliah and her family in Sussex led to us reminiscing about childhood memories.  

When we were little, Alliah (the cute, little one), would creep into our beds and tuck her freezing feet under her big sisters to warm up! (Perhaps this is where my desire to make the cosiest handmade slippers truly originates!) 

This story of Alliah’s cold feet has passed into family folklore. Her children, Lilja and Mikki, particularly enjoyed hearing it.

Telling childhood stories creates a sense of belonging, a shared family story. These are the traditions our children will carry on. 

Traditions tie us to memories of happy times gone past; and link them to special family times we create for our own children. 

One festive tradition I love is giving my daughters a new pair of slippers on Christmas Eve. Slippers have such a strong connection to childhood, and for me, to Christmas.

It was our family custom to receive new slippers under the tree each year; this was as traditional as the tangerine in our stocking and the turkey for Christmas lunch!  And it’s a custom I continue...

Back to the wonderful barn where my sister lives. The flagstone floor is cool in summer and cold in winter, so we were relaxing in our slippers and catching up without anywhere else to be. 

It was then my nephew Mikki (at the magical age of 6), announced his slippers were ‘like the furriest monkey cuddling my feet’ which made us all laugh. 

Mikki’s playful description struck me for two reasons: it sums up the wonderful creativity of childhood; and in all the lovely feedback received over the years, this is my most cherished description of our slippers!

Read on to hear how slippers are a family affair for my sister and her gorgeous family.

What is the importance of slippers in your life?

Alliah: I have always suffered with cold feet. As my older sisters will remember, I would climb into bed with them when I was little and push my feet under their warm bodies, much to their frustration!  Luckily one of those older sisters now makes the best slippers.  

Do you wear slippers all year round or just in winter?

Alliah: I was one of Ayshea’s first customers (I’m not sure that I paid for them) but since that first pair, I now wear them all year round.  We live in an old barn with hard flagstone floors, so wearing slippers in the house is a must.   

What is the importance of slippers in your life?

Alliah: If my slippers aren’t by the side of the bed, my morning doesn’t start on the right foot and I have to send the children off in search of them. This often ends in tears as they rugby tackle each other to be the first to find them! 

Tell us about some of the interesting places you have worn your slippers?

Alliah: I was silly enough to take my slippers camping with me some years back and unfortunately, they got bit spoiled in the long, wet grass.  However, I have kept these as my camping slippers!  Perfect for sitting out by the camp fire in the evenings.   

Are slippers especially useful in the countryside?

Alliah: Yes, the kids are in the habit of kicking off their muddy shoes as they walk in the house and donning their well-worn slippers.  

Are slippers a family affair in your family?

Alliah: My children have had The Small Home slippers since they were babies - the mini slippers are just so adorable.  

They make the perfect hand me downs to their younger cousins too, as invariably they grow out of them too quickly and then try and charm their Auntie for a new a pair!  

The only member of the family not wearing any slippers yet is my husband.  But I think he could be persuaded if they arrived from Santa this Christmas! 

What do you love about Auntie Ayshea’s slippers?

Lilja: ‘They are very comfortable & very fluffy, and the best bit is that the fluff in them is NOT itchy. The decorations are really nice, I like all the colours.'

When do you wear your slippers?

Mikki: 'I wear my slippers in the morning when I am eating breakfast. And they keep my feet warm it’s like having layers & layers & layers of blankets over my feet.'

How would you describe the experience of putting slippers on?

Mikki: ‘The first thing that pops into my head when I think of Auntie Ayshea’s slippers is YAY! They look really nice and comfy on the outside because you can see all the fur and you know all of that fur is going to be on the inside when you put them on. They feel like the furriest monkey holding onto my feet.'


Springles Cottage is available for rental and sleeps 4 people, for further information check out or email Alliah on

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