Wednesday, 22 May 2013
I'm off to Bunnings this morning for supplies for the Markit the stall. We need some hanging arrangement for possible new stock, 'possible' in that it's not back from the printers yet and we aren't sure whether it will be finished in time, it's a work in progress shall we say, if it is done then we will need somewhere to display it. We are borrowing a friend's big van which means I can take lots of stuff but whether it will make it onto the stall is always open to editing on the day. Perhaps I should have booked a two table stand.... nah. It's exhausting enough trolleying it all in anyway!
I got six loads to gloves dyed yesterday, all new colours/shades and for the first time in ages we have a bright red I am happy with. Not sure how that happened! I've got glove orders to go out this morning and it has been a busy week with all the gloves going out. New stock has been delivered to Lulu Design Store (Balaclava), The Maker (Hobart), Department of the Exterior (Canberra), Shelley Panton (South Melbourne) and Made by Others (Moss Vale)... busy busy busy!
We got the rest of our Lisa B sock delivery on Monday too so now we have some of her new cotton sock range in and the oh-so-cute baby socks. Those baby socks learnt to walk yesterday and headed out the door! The adult socks in wool are available in cable, spot, fairisle stripe and snowflake and we also have a few styles in stock in odd patterns, the cotton ones are in floral and pin spot (I'm coveting the pin spot in the green and the pink).
OK I better stop waffling and get the newly dyed gloves downstairs and sorted for the orders. I'm thinking today will be a bit topsy. I'm longing for a day sleeping in but I don't think that will be happening for a while. I'm sure panic will set in before Sunday when I realise I haven't made something we need.....
Saturday, 18 May 2013
The in-house model strikes again. There I was trying to get shots of the new 'ammo' bags and someone had to sit on them. He calls it 'product testing', I call it 'typical cat behaviour'.
So it's Saturday again, coming around way too fast for my liking along with that overwhelming sense of everything spiralling out of control and everything stopped dead. Happily I have ticked hot water bottle covers off the procrastination list, the bag handles didn't take too long to make last night and we have a new shipment of Lisa B socks in. We've restocked on spot and cable sock colours and have some new fairisle snowflakes too, there is another box arriving next week with the cotton socks and the super cute baby socks (oh my, you have to see these!).
The 'ammo' bags are now in a new size, 10", and these are all in brown 'antique' leather, one cognac in colour and the other a bit chocolatier. They look redder in the photos than in real life, they are much more chestnut in tone. There are two 8" (43 and 52), two in 10" (64 and 36) and one in 12" (410). I'm running really low on the canvas bags and also on the brown leathers so please if you want one don't leave it. My army disposal dealer is trying to hunt some more down for me but with this sort of thing it tends to disappear and that's it. I could go grain sack but I'll have to do a sample and see what I think about it. This project has been sitting about for ages and in the procrastination interim Tamara Fogle started doing her range out of England and I've steered away from using the grain sacking.
Thanks for all the nice comments when I had a grouch late on Thursday night, I was tired and still had a mountain of work to do before bed. It all got done and people got their heads around the cold weather and came out and bought gloves... it probably helped that I hung them in the window to remind people! The Cottage is very wintercentric, it's all about woolling up and getting cosy. It's Markit in a week, is there anything you would like me to pack? Let me know if you are coming and if there is something you want to bring.
OK, better get a move on. The shop floor is filthy and I need to put all Jethro's glove hunting 'kills' back (these two things do not go together by the way...). I must spin some yarn today as we have sold out of all the ones I put in last week. More work to do..... although the new black and cream baby alpaca/silk/angora scarves might be ready to come out of the dryer soon....
Thursday, 16 May 2013
I hate Budget Week. I only realised this afternoon why it has been so slow in the shop, whenever there is doom/gloom, budgets, political carp sales plummet and people seem to hide away, then they forget about the politicians and things go back to normal. I am waiting on the normal, I have a lot of bills to pay!
And there is the weather. One week it is glorious and people get lulled into a balmy Indian Summer and forget that the cold is where we are heading, Winter is just around the corner and they act all shocked. And then I've been dyeing gloves and preparing for the cold and now I feel like I am in August but actually it is still just ticking over the middle of May, this is an issue all retailers have, we get a bit confused about the season and what month it is!
I threw together a dodgy window display this evening, our usual hanging gloves and trying to squeeze the mannequin in with some woollens keeping her warm. Jethro of course now thinks the glove hunting season is definitely open and he even tried to grab them out of my hand as I started hanging them. He's got his silly pants on this evening and has been sitting in the sink, trying to find his packet of bonito flake treats, playing in a large cardboard box and yelling at me. He's found his voice and is very talkative at the moment.
I have the ironing press on and should really be pressing gloves before I turn in for the night. I didn't manage to get the handles made for the new batch of 'ammo' bags but will have to make sure I get them done tomorrow night... bad Pen bad... I even went and picked up the buckles today but just somehow the straps didn't get done and I know there are people waiting for the new chestnut ones to be finished.
I better go and check what the brat is doing (he's yelling up the stairs) and get these gloves pressed before bed.
Monday, 13 May 2013
I had a huge pile of dyeing to be done yesterday but some how most of the day got frittered away on napping and general laziness. The feline was just glad to have me in his sights most of the day I think. Late in the afternoon I fired up the coppers and got the dyeing started, we were unbelievably low on glove stock, it shocked me when I checked. Another two lots done today in between chores and errands and meetings. I now have a mountainous pile of pressing and clipping to do.
The weather has swung around from the last week of balmy autumnal days and I marvelled at the huge sunlit icy cold clouds that piled up and then dropped their cargo of hail as I drove back from Coburg. Beanies and gloves in stock and more scarves when I get into the studio tomorrow (must remember my glasses) and new glove colours in store tomorrow. Markit creeps closer and I must get my arse in gear. Hopefully the socks will arrive in time.
Not much else to chat about. I need to stomp into the city tonight although I would much rather be hunched over the warm Elna press!
Saturday, 11 May 2013
I'm just back from two days up country. Oh my, it is a stunning Autumn out there! The best colours I have seen for years, it took my breath away. Poplars, liquid amber, pin oaks, elms and best of all the maples flaming coral red. Mother Nature really know how to turn on a show. I drove through the mountain ash and tree ferns just to balance out my native and imported species and felt just how much I needed to look at some trees, it's been a while. I couldn't have asked for two more beautiful days. I love 'flying' through the trees down country roads but really I wish I had a bit more time to actually stop and do nothing but look at those trees, sitting in the sun drinking a big mug of steaming tea and feeling all lethargic and at peace.
Anyway, back to the grind, I'm shopgirl today, I've returned to my Saturday duties. I've got a pile of stock to tag and get out and a hillock of beautiful dyed fleece to spin. I managed to get two hanks done on Wednesday and they will be going in store today once I've weighted and measured them. My spinning wheel needs a bit of tightening and fine tuning as it gets a bit loose being carted up and down the stairs.
I believe it's Mother's Day tomorrow.... so let's get all crassly commercial and suggest presents from the shop.... well really anything from the shop would please a mum I think! The indigo kit springs to mind for the crafty mum, fingerless gloves for the mum who likes to go out walking on a cold morning, an enamel tea pot and hand crocheted tea cosy for a sitting around the kitchen table type of mum, a tapestry print silk scarf for a glamorous mum out doing her Grace Kelly impression (or she could just hang it on the wall), a plump of cushions for her to sink into after a hard day being a mum, a 'hottie' wheat bag for her to fall asleep clutching, a 'granny' or 'lumina' purse in our new range of metallic and lustre leathers for her to keep her financial life in........ well you get the idea. You know we have lots and lots of 'mum' type stuff.
(I always feel bad doing the shop plug but the reality is we have very large bills to pay!)
Oh and the Lisa B socks! Don't forget them.
I see that the weather is about to change, these autumnal glory days are being swapped for an icy bout next week, 14º, just my type of weather! Perfect weather for holing up in the studio and trying to get some work done for Markit. Tomorrow I need to get cracking on the glove dyeing, we have orders to go out and have sold out of some colours already. I hear my baby alpaca/silk yarn has arrived so it will be time to chain myself to the knitting machine and get some scarves done. So much to do and organise.
OK, time to get the shop sorting underway.
I'll be at the Cottage from 11 until 5 this afternoon for all your Mother's Day needs!
Tuesday, 7 May 2013
Today has been just as busy as yesterday was. Yesterday was all about wholesale orders and mail orders and photographing quilts and answering emails and running about like a headless chook. Today was once again wholesale orders and mail orders with the added bonus of a delivery of new Oleana knits. I managed 'breakfast' at 2pm and am still in desperate need of more tea, no studio work has been achieved and as I am shopgirl tomorrow I'm going to be luck if I get there on Thursday.
I have become slightly obsessed with knitting baby clothes for the DellAdam baby. I think I must be seriously out of practice if it takes me 6 goes to get a very simple and cute little pattern right. I'm blaming it on my eyesight and am longing for my new glasses to be ready.
So much to do at the moment.
Winter is our most frantic time and we aren't even there yet!
Well I had better get some dyepots on if I'm not going to get to the studio today.
Anything good on TV tonight?
Not that I need a distraction.
Monday, 6 May 2013
A fine autumnal Monday out there.
And I am trying to catch up on all the stuff that got left scattered about after I shut the shop door late on Saturday afternoon. There is mail to go out, purchases to be couriered off (I bought the wrong sized boxes) , emails to be written (sorry of you are waiting, the replies are coming) , bills to be paid (groan, elastically stretching the finances to cover it all, springing back with a snap) and a shop that looked like the mongol hordes had been through leaving a ransacked and pillaged battlefield (the shop manages to get like this between 5pm Saturday and 11am Monday for some reason).
We have the countdown until Markit at Fed Square on the 26th of May and I have no idea what in hell we are taking. I'm shopgirl on Wednesday so if I am really lucky I might get 3 days in the studio this week. As you might be able to tell the little pressure valve on the top of my head is starting to whistle.....
I went to The School's Instameet late yesterday and got to hang with some of my favourite people (and I ate tacos) and basked in the glory that is Megan Morton. As you know I'm not good with social occasions but this was fun and then I came home and sat on the couch and watched TV while I knitted.
I'm all over the place today, OK better get on with the rest of my Monday chores.....