10 February 2009

Country Living - Fame at last ...

You may remember this post in December when I mentioned that there was a Country Living photoshoot going almost on the Dairy House doorstep. I thought it was for the April issue but apparently we are in the fashion spread in the March issue, out now. Typically, my subscription expired last month and I haven't renewed it, so I shall have to wait until the magazine is in the shops before I get to see what was written about us.

Lois emailed me last evening to tell me we had a mention, and apparently someone phoned DH today asking to order some of my fabric bundles. I hope to be speaking to her tomorrow.


06 February 2009

Snow and Shopping for Stock

We've had some snow folks! There have been some wonderful photos in blogland so not to be outdone, here are mine. Apart from the bird table I took them on may way to Dairy House on Wednesday and Thursday. Thursday was totally different - you'll notice the icicles on the petrol pump - with far more snow and a complete whiteout looking across the fields. Absolutely nothing to see - no trees, hedges, horizon - nothing! I'd have liked to stop and take another photo, but there didn't seem to be much point! The difference in snow levels between Somerset and Dorset has been quite marked. The Dorset end of the A303 has been much worse, so when I leave home I have no idea what to expect on my 32-mile journey! Let's hope there's an improvement tomorrow.

Needless to say we haven't had too many visitors to Dairy House over the last few days, but we've still managed a few sales! It's meant I've had an opportunity to tidy and sort a bit more. The lengths of braid are now wrapped round card and priced - I hadn't realised how much of my stock was unpriced!! More fabric has been folded and if it's quiet at the weekend I shall endeavour to finish filling those lovely drawers!

I've acquired some super bits and pieces over the last few weeks - a bumper box of lace from the Antiques Fair at Shepton, several auction lots of lace, loads of buttons and a few exciting items from private sellers. Most things you see here will be for sale. I hope to get much of it priced today. I'd love to say it will be on my website, but at the moment I just don't have time to spend updating it (as those of you kind enough to look from time to time will have realised).

Anyway, here's just a small selection so you can see what fun I'm having today sorting through everything. Lovely lace pieces - perhaps I should keep the discus thrower for the Olympics! And what about the Crinoline ladies and other embroidered nets! Sleeves with fabulous flouces, pretty buttons, an abundance of buckles. And what about my "One up one down" little house? Isn't it wonderful? I think I shall be able to find the time to give it a spring clean and give it a lived-in feel. The sewing machine was brought in to DH by someone the other day. I've wanted a miniature one like this for many years so maybe "Everything comes to he who waits" isn't too far off the mark! As for the fabric-covered boxes - yummy! And the 2 Victorian dress adornments are a treat. Only a few more months before we'll all be writing about bluebell woods like the one on the tin!


01 February 2009

An Award, A Birthday ... and New Drawers!

Those of you who follow Donna's blog and website may recognise part of the title of this post. Read on to see why I've poached part of it! ...

First of all I have been given an award by Amanda ...

... because "The authors say that blogs who receive this award are exceedingly charming. This blog invests in proximity in space, time and relationships. These kind bloggers aim to find and be new friends. They are not interested in prizes or self-aggrandisement. Our hope is that when ribbons of these awards are cut, even more friendships will be propagated. Please give your kind attention to these writers."
Thank you so much Amanda, not only for thinking me worthy of the award but also for the lovely words you wrote about my blog in your award-giving post! I'm delighted to receive it. I should be passing it on now to other bloggers, but if you saw the number of blogs in my list of favourites (not those on my sidebar, but all the others I dip into when time allows) you would see what a difficult task I would have to choose the required number. I guess there are in excess of 200 now! I think I must say that if I have left a comment on your blog in recent weeks you can be fairly certain that I visit you regularly and that you are an inspiration. Consequently, please feel free to accept the award and pass it on as you think fit. I know this isn't exactly the way in which such awards are intended to be offered, but I hope I will be forgiven.
So ... moving on ... Mum celebrated a birthday on 20 January (I had better not mention the number, but think bingo and two fat ladies!) and on Friday I took her to Bath where we met Hannah at the Moon & Sixpence for lunch ...

prior to enjoying Hannah's birthday gift to Gran ... seats at the Theatre Royal to see the Moscow Ballet perform Sleeping Beauty. We were in the second row with only the orchestra between us and the stage (no-one in the seats directly in front of us). The performance was magical and Mum had a wonderful time. When we lived in Northampton Hannah danced from the age of 3 until we moved to Bath when she was 14. Every year Mum would take her to see whichever Ballet Company was performing at the Theatre, so this was 'payback' time!! A jolly time was had by all ... in fact, if you were walking round Queen Square in Bath about 5.15 pm on Friday and saw 3 women spanning 3 generations in varying degrees of uncontrollable hysterical laughter (you know the sort ... doubled up, stitch-evoking, unable to walk in a straight line and thus blocking the pavement), then I apologise! It was funny at the time, but there's absolutely no point in telling you why we were laughing because it's never funny to anyone else, is it!!

And so, finally, to the "New Drawers" ... If you read Donna's post a couple of weeks ago you'll know that she bought new drawers and that her old ones were going to a good home ...

Here they are just prior to being carried out of Donna's home on Tuesday ...

And here they are just after they arrived at their new home yesterday (they lived in Liz's van in the interim) ...

One photo taken with flash, one without. I'm never sure which is better inside Dairy House. The flash seems to make everything seem so flat but without it the photos tend to be rather yellow. What do you think?

I had to do a complete rearrange of my space to fit them in. It was a marathon task and all achieved on what turned out to be our busiest day. We had people queueing up to pay for their chosen items yesterday. Liz and I really felt we'd done a day's work by the time we locked up. First of all shelves were shifted, the French cot full of eiderdowns and quilts was moved,

the 2 banks of 25 drawers which house my haberdashery, buttons, lace, small pieces of fabric, sequins, beads, threads etc were 'shoved' (literally) 2 feet along from their original position in order to squash in the shelves I'd moved.

We had to saw a bit off the uprights of the shelves at skirting board level as the gap was half an inch too short!!!! Plenty of hilarity there as I'm sure you can imagine!! Some things just won't budge or bend - wooden shelves being one of them!

Thankfully I was there today to finish tidying up. My space is the area which customers walk straight into when they come in the door, so first impressions and all that ... it was important that it was all shipshape and Bristol fashion by the time we closed up this afternoon (at 5.15 instead of 4 pm).

And here are the drawers (as many times as Blogger will let me upload photos) as I left them tonight. I printed off the temporary labels so that DH customers know where to look until I decide on how I want to label them long-term.

I am filling them with linens - tablecloths, traycloths, napkins, sheets, pillowcases, doilies, place mats, runners - and so on, in the hope that people will open the drawers to find what they're looking for without leaving the screwed up pile of badly refolded items which is the norm! (If you are one of my linen customers I KNOW it wasn't you!!!!)

So! Have the drawers gone to a good home? Oh yes indeedy, they most certainly have. They'll be stroked and nurtured and filled and emptied and refilled, labelled and polished and in 2 days have already been coveted by 3 customers!! And they're mine ... all mine! And that's the way they're going to stay!! A girl just can't have too many drawers ... and I now have 76!!!