I still can’t believe I am having to think about Christmas! Before the shop, I would never buy a thing until after my birthday on the 8th December, but that won’t work now as I wouldn’t have anything Christmassy in the shop. With all that in mind and trying to be organised, today I went to meet up with the uber-organised Jules Hogan at her colourful workshop at the end of her garden in Reading.
Jules’ products have proven to be popular with our customers so it is time to order some new colours for winter. Leaving home, I thought I knew the colours I wanted, then I arrived and I’m like a child in a sweet shop – I want a piece of everything!! (….calm yourself Teresa). I like bold bright colours and Jules likes calm and toned so we had quite a laugh trying to agree colour combinations that would blend nicely together. She put some together which I thought were ‘yawn’ and the colours I put together were her idea of ‘arghhh’ Eventually, we came up with some lovely combinations – a bright red; a raspberry; a lovely blue with green flashes that we have put with burgundy which makes me think of tartan (very Christmassy!) and some others that you will have to wait to see.
Jules uses high quality lamb’s wool from the Geelong area of Australia which is spun and dyed in a family mill based in Scotland, she makes each piece in her workshop on a knitting machine then finishes by hand.
I chose to stock her ponchos not only because of the great quality and attention to detail but because I love wearing ponchos, they are good all year round; roll up small in your bag for a cool summer evening, warm in winter, not bulky to drive in or too hot to shop in, one size fits all and can be dressy or casual. So, once I’d decided we should have them I looked at her other products and chose her lovely wrist warmers – who doesn’t need warm hands in winter? They are better than gloves, because they are fingerless you don’t need to keep taking them on and off to do things- like answer your phone and they are nice and long so no cold strips between the end of the glove and your sleeve. These are important things to think about!
Another item is her lovely hot water bottles in a lamb’s wool cover, they're not just for granny, so cuddly and warm for all ages, a must for those winter tootsies, which brings me on to her cosy warm socks which we have two sizes (4-6 and 8-10) and colours.
So, ponchos for the ladies but what about the chaps? Never fear, we have warm herringbone patterned scarves perfect for a present (you know how hard it is to find something for the men) in two colours.
Lastly we have Jules’ hanging lavender hearts. They smell fab being filled with English lavender, come in lots of different colours and are boxed, they make great gifts.
So that was my job done today – one thing ticked of the Christmas list – in August! I have to say, it makes it easier as the weather has been more like autumn than it is summer!!
If there is anything you think we need to stock, then I’m always open to suggestions.
Next blog – Soap on a Rope!