Tuesday, 30 August 2011

I always miss the party :-(

Wow, what a year !!!

A little over a year ago  I was stood in the Old Market Square waiting to meet Eleanor to go down to the Riverside Festival and to ask if she wanted another partner in the business, what was I thinking?? Seriously though, I had been following the chat with interest and my feelings were that there was enough passion in her to make it work and if I could give some support then I would even though I would be pretty much a sleepy spinney partner.

So I signed on the dotted line and promptly went home, climbed on our motorbike, headed off to Germany and missed the opening party!

2010 holiday 002

That's our bike in the reflection as well as yours truly! So whilst everyone was inspecting our new shop, I was collecting photos of wool shops in Germany and Austria....makes a change from the usual holiday snaps!

The first shop was in Bavaria, on the German /Austrian border and CLOSED. We were a little late arriving and by the time we had remembered where the hotel was the shops had shut up for the day but I did like the sign and outside decoration.

wool shops
wool shops

wool shops
wool shops

I found shops that were so ordered that I wouldn't even have dared to ask if I could so much as touch a ball of yarn

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This one didn't even look as if anyone ever knitted in it!!!

But I did find a few that felt friendly inspite of the language barrier

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2010 holiday 178

Sometimes its all about the spirit of the place and the owner.

2010 holiday 179

I hope that many of you are able to attend the shops first birthday party, I wish I could be there but as I've said, I always miss the party!!


Saturday, 27 August 2011

Liese's Fun and Games.

Liese's final showdown!

Liese's Lucky Dip

Liese has a pretty bowl. She has lots of little slips of paper. On that paper she'll write things like "100% off your order", "50% off your order", "one free ball of yarn" etc etc. She'll then fold those slips of paper up and put them in the bowl. When you've made your selection for purchase and get to the till, you'll put your hand in the bowl (no other appendages please) and choose your slip. You'll unfold the slip and hopefully have picked out the one that gives you 100% off! Then you'll pay what you owe (or jump up and down because you don't owe anything) !


I'm as excited as you!!!

(Please bear in mind that you'll be choosing the slips only when you're checking out - no choosing the 100% off and then deciding to take everything in the shop...)

There also be little slips giving you some sweets and just in case you don't know what they look like:


And they're your games folks, dead exciting. Don't forget to come and joint he fun. I want at least as many people coming to the birthday as came to the opening and we're estimating that that was around 70. So bring yourselves, and your friends, and your family and anybody you can drag in off the street because we want the same buzzing atmosphere as we had last year!

Love Eleanor. :)


Friday, 26 August 2011

A Year to Remember!

As our first birthday is fast approaching and as I am handing over the role of marketing manager to June, it seemed a perfect time to take a nostalgia trip and chat about my favourite moments over the last year.

The two weeks before we opened are up at the top of my list, although it was a lot of hard work and Eleanor and I only went home to sleep, it was also exciting and the success of our opening day made me proud to be part of Knit Nottingham.

The day we put up the shop sign particularly stands out, me up a ladder helping hold the sign as it was attached and Eleanor breathing a sign of relief that she didn't have to go up the dreaded ladder!

Attending the Curiousity Haus craft fairs in Sneinton is next on my list, especially the one last december when despite the snow and cold, we both got to meet lots of lovely customers and other local crafters.

Back tracking a little, there was our halloween pub knit, which although only a few people could make it was still a wonderful evening (as I was going to a fancy dress party later on I showed up in full costume and I'm eternally grateful that there are no photographs of this!). Not forgetting the first time we got a mention in one of the national knitting magazines, who am I kidding....I get a warm fuzzy feeling everytime we get a mention!

Our Heart Art event back in February (to find out more, check out  Heart Art, Heart Art update part one or Heart Art update part two) is definitely in my top ten list, for many reasons including the support from our customers, that we raised some funds for the British Heart Foundation and in the process created a wonderful piece of art. For those of you who did not hear about this event, this is what the heart looked like at the end of the event.....

And this is the finished heart already to be hung on the wall, I think it's a really stunning creation.

Special thanks to Sue for doing such a fantastic job of stitching all the squares together.

Although I am sad to be stepping down after such an amazing first year, I just know that June will make a fantastic marketing manager and that Knit Nottingham will continue to grow and develop under the watchful eyes of Eleanor, June and Sue. I'll stop there before I get all tearful and end by saying that hope to see many of you at the shop for our first birthday party.

Love from
Liese x

Thursday, 25 August 2011

June's Fun and Games Number.

Let me introduce you to June's little game. Not that we really need to - it's only:

Pass the Parcel

But with a bit of a twist because we won't all be sat round in a circle all day (more's the pity!).

So, obviously, something gorgeous in the middle (*cough* maybe handspun *cough*), lots of paper layers and little presents throughout including yarn, notions and sweeeeeeeeeeeeeeets! Throughout the day alarm bells from her phone will ring in June's little ear and she'll shout 'HANDS UP!' and your response will be to put your hands up. The first person to wave their hands in the air (like they just don't care) gets to rip a layer off and wins the present!

June's decision as to who put their hands up first will be final - so no tantrums please!

It won't all be orange yarn - we promise!

Tomorrow we'll be talking about the potential for you to win 100% off your purchase. How exciting! I think I'll join in!!!



Wednesday, 24 August 2011

Eleanor's Fun and Games.

(And the most important because I'm organising it....).

You'll hopefully know by now that we're nearly one year old! Blimey - it's gone fast. And because we're a silly and frivolous bunch here and Knit Nottingham we're throwing a birthday party as befits a little one whose most complicated words are 'Mummy', 'dinner' and 'now' and who can't yet control their bowels. Not that the shop can't control it's bowels but you know what we mean. Anyway - all of that means that the birthday party will be full of cakes, sweets, balloons, games, laughter, and fun!!!

We're doing three whole games and we're going to give you the rules here so that we're not explaining all through the day. So here are the rules for my game!

A Speed Knitting Contest!

The day before we'll be casting on an amount of stitches - probably in aran yarn with 5mm needles we'll be timing how long it takes you to knit two rows. Simple ey?

The most exciting thing about this game is the fact that I'm going to get busy with pva, markers and blue tac to create a leadership board! We've even got some gold stars bought by a lovely customer as Christmas decorations and we can't quite work out how, but we're definitely going to use them!

So we'll be writing the entrant's names on bits of cards as well as their times and putting them in order on the board. The winner, by the end of the day, gets a King Cole Pattern Book. There are books for baby knitters, adult knitters and even one for crocheters (with the. Funkiest. Bag. Ever.).

So that's the low down on my game - I assure you it's going to be the best time you've ever had in your life!!!

Tomorrow we'll talk pass the parcel. :) 


Eleanor. :)

Sunday, 21 August 2011

Oi Oi!

Another little update. You will really have to excuse me - life is still manic for all of us and the blog has suffered. We apologise. But, joy, the Fresh Prince of Bel Air is on the TV and I have some time to myself so I'll share it with you. I reckon bullet points are best for this because I have lots of little things to tell you:

  • Plans for the birthday party are afoot! We have three game-y type things in the pipeline which means that you have three whole chances to win stuff! (Including the chance to get 100% off your purchase - so I guess it not really a purchase anymore...). Anyway, more details to come when we've had a shop meeting tomorrow!
  • I'm writing a pattern. It's beaueaueaueaueaueautiful! And it could well be yours - to be released at the birthday party.
  • The webshop is soon to be updated with all the patterns (though I fear I ought to be touching wood with that one...). It's a right fart everybody, as I've said before. Each pattern has two photos and I need to give the customer all the info they need to make it so, think four different design options, six different chest sizes, two or three colours per design. Plus our sneaky tactic of linking to gorgeous yarns of ours to tempt you. Then you've got the needles/hooks you need (plus links) and buttons, ribbons, press studs etc etc. AND all of this needs* html-ing (don't know the verb for that one...). Blimey, it's not my kind of thing, it really isn't, one space in the wrong place and I'm buggered. Plus the old computer broke down half way through and deleted at least 30 patterns worth of info that I'd been inputting (and I've lost a load of photos on there too). I'm over it, I'll tell you that for free but if I keep believing that it's nearly done, I'll keep going. 
  • All of that means that there's very little knitting time for me. 
  • But I have finished (very nearly) a sweeeeeet shrug as a commission in the teal Bamboo Cotton. Photo's when it's finished. Promise. 
  • I've written the 'scripts' for some how-to videos that were requested but both require me to have at least a couple of hours knitting time so I can get a few swatches into a few different positions so that I'm able to do a Blue Peter thing ("and here's one I did earlier..."). This I'm hoping to do this week so there will be more video goodness soon. 
  • We've signed the lease for next year so you're not getting rid of us yet!
  • We never announced that we have the Katia Ondas in stock on here which was an oversight, I was so excited that I wrote a little blog about it and then apparently never posted it. Hmph. it's something that you've been asking for so come and spend your pennies, that and the rest of the Katia range that we have in stock make just about the best presents ever! Christmas is coming... We also have a little surprise from them - to be released at the party so keep those eyes peeled! (Blurgh, hate that phrase...). 
Right, I'm off to prepare more photos ready for when our volunteer comes to help me with the website tomorrow (one day I'll get a day off but at least I get to work from home). Then when Big Brother (YES!!!) is on I'm going to spend some time with my poor old sock which has been on the needles for, hmm, well, a while...

Love Eleanor.

P.s One of our lovely customers just posted these to facebook so in case you missed them I'm-a-gonna post them for you here. Apparently I can't get them to line up so I'm going to let the photos frolic like our yarns are frolicing in Paris. Blimey - Paris! I'm going to call that a vicarious holiday. :)

*When I first wrote this I wrote 'needles' here. Really need some time off. Haha. 

Saturday, 13 August 2011

Suggestions please!!

I've had a request to do some how-to videos and I'm happy to oblige. Any suggestions??



Saturday, 6 August 2011

Update - of sorts.

A little thing to start:

Go to google maps and type in 'China to Taiwan'. Look at instruction number 48. Have a giggle. Come back here and read.

You might have noticed at the end of my last post that I felt more than a little guilty at leaving you all for so long. Life and the shop got in the way I'm afraid. I had that holiday for a week (lovely, if not that much of a holiday - there was a lot of work involved though most of it was in m pyjamas (not the lessons at Husqvarna though, I pulled on some real clothes for those. Just.)).

Anyway, I was met, when I came back last Tuesday, by a humongous box full of our first Katia order and here are the results: lovely, frilly scarf yarns. You'll have probably seen it before but we've got some new colours in and they're just divine - knittable in a night too! Or indeed crochetable. :)

Once I'd put those out I thought it was time I brightened the shop up a bit so I made a mega order with King Cole which arrived the very next day! Good old King Cole (was a merry old soul...). Three. Huge. Boxes. And when I say 'huge' I mean I was tempted to set up home in one and rent the others out! Blimey. So I sorted the yarn (we're now back fully in stock of Bamboo/Cotton and the Riot you'll be pleased to know, with a few new colours in the Haze DK) - that took most of the day. The patterns are taking longer. I got 53 new patterns dear readers - fifty three. Yowser!!

You'll know if you read the blog that I'm in the process of getting the patterns available to buy on the internet. After a slowish day in the shop yesterday and some bloody hard work on mine and some lovely volunteer's parts that is nearly done. I said that's nearly done!! Until then the patterns in the shop look a bit of a mess but it's worth wading through because there's at least 20 patterns that I would knit out of the 50 odd and that's good going considering half of them are for kids and some for men.

One day I'm going to explain the process of getting these patterns sorted because people keep look at me funny like 'really?! Putting patterns on a website is that difficult!?'. Yeah difficult and mindnumbing. the worst combination but it's nearly finished so I'm smiling.

Anyway, there's a little update. Only 'of sorts' because there's been so much more done over the last couple of weeks and because I forgot my camera so there's so photos... Sorry...

Love Eleanor.

Friday, 5 August 2011

A little bit of a mystery...

I need your help fair blog-readers!!!

Can you remember a while ago, before Knit Nottingham was even a twinkle in our eyes, there was another indie knitting shop in the Viccy Centre market called Knitty Gritty? Well I do - it's what made me open our little shop. :)

The lovely Lizzie, who's now much happier riding horses in the countryside, has been into my shop today with some bags of bits and bobs. It's mainly shop samples inside the bags and I'm still in contact with most of the guys that knitted for her so that's not a problem but I also have these:

Made by some obviously very clever knitters and sewers (I'm quite a lot in love with the wabbit...).

Lizzie remembers that it was a mother and daughter team who brought them in: Sophie and Lissie respectively. The mother was around 5 foot 5 and the daughter was taller. The daughter was maybe around 15 years old. Sometimes Sophie wore glasses and sometimes not, she had a bob haircut and they came to Knit in Notts once or twice.

This is as much as we know dear crafters and we need you help us reacquaint these little fellows and their cushions to their rightful owners before I comandeer them both for my dribbly, pukey little nephew...

E-mail or phone or tell them to get on down if you know them!!

Love Eleanor.

P.s. I promise to get back to you soon. I'm wallowing in a sea of html and I miss you.