Saturday, 26 April 2014

glorious autumn

Morning all!
What a week of holidays and stop-start it has been, quite topsy in fact.
I know it is Saturday, I am shopgirl but it feels really weird with ANZAC Day falling on a Friday.
Anyways. It's all over now. No more public holidays for a few months. Time to get back to work.
I did a quick run up country yesterday to pick up more gloves from my knitters so now it will be full boil on the dye vats to get caught up and re-stocked. There is so much to do at the moment and I really need to pull my finger out. I've taken the splint off my wrist (the surgeon might be a bit annoyed with me when I see him on Wednesday) and although it still hurts like hell and I have limited movement I need it to be a bit freer to get the work done.
We had a big delivery of socks on Wednesday and their display in the shop makes my feet twitch in happiness. I snaffled a new pair of cotton florals this morning just because I could! There are new colours in the wool cashmere spot socks, new designs in the men's cotton and we have a bowl full of bubba socks. The beanies are doing really well and I need to get knitting more. Seems people are embracing the bobble hat and there has been much discussion about the pros and cons of the pompom.
I've got new vintage stock to show you (needs a clean first) and we have a very special deliver that will be arriving soon but you will have to wait until it arrives..... I can't really afford new stock but sometimes you just have to do it!
OK. Better toddle off and get things sorted. We have boxes everywhere and bags of gloves that I need to find a place for. Jethro was a bit overwhelmed by giant sacks full of gloves, he ended up bring me undyed gloves from his special box of them in the kitchen. He 'fetches' them to me in bed and take them back downstairs and pop them in his cardboard box. I'm not sure whether they are prey or kittens to him.
I'll be in the shop until 5- come say hellooooo!

Tuesday, 22 April 2014


Shop is open today!
I am shopgirl!
I will be working on beanies.
It is raining, you might need to think 'Winter'.
Jethro is not happy.
Come and visit!

Saturday, 19 April 2014

bring on the bunnies and the eggs

Morning all!

Hope you got to scoff a couple of HCBs yesterday, I managed to grab a couple this morning, I hear there have been early morning bunfights all over town.
It was a peaceful day around here yesterday... apart from me yelling at the knitting machine regularly and the crashes of bits of equipment sliding off the work the work table at odd moments. I was tinkering too much with the machinery and managed to get far less than I hoped actually knitted. The pile of beanies is slowly getting bigger although I am questioning why I always have to be the twit making everything and not be like other designers who just farm production out (rhetorical question, no need to answer).
Years ago I handknitted a range of beanies with giant pompoms on the top, Dell has a brown one and you might have seen her in it in the shop in the past. The early ones were from lovely Italian yarn and then when I got hold of the spinning wheel there were hand spun wool ones as well. This time I am using locally produced yarn for a more classic beanie styling and I think they are turning quite nice! I queried the size of the pompom on instagram and the general consensus is the bigger the better.

The Cottage is open today.
I'll probably be stitching up beanies, if my wrist doesn't pack it in (I over did it a tad yesterday) or maybe winding pompoms.
We have some little fluffy chicks and ceramic rabbits  in stock if you are after choc-free Easter gifts. We've sadly sold out of the wooden rabbits and carrot boy racers.... or do we have a single rabbit with basket left? Really should check before I start typing.

I managed to get a couple of the-chicken-and-the-egg chemise dresses made and I have more half done up at the studio. I quite enjoyed getting back into the sewing with these. I sometimes get a bit too overwhelmed by all the work and get a touch of the procrastinator happening. When I start sewing and realise it's not as bad as I thought it would be then I settle down and feel much better. It's nice getting wax print garments back in store.

OK. I'm off to vacuum and chase Jethro about. He had such a nice day yesterday, he loves it when the shop is closed and I am hanging about doing stuff. He isn't going to be happy at 11am let me tell you but the payoff is two days with the run of the place.
Pop in if you are in the 'hood!

Wednesday, 16 April 2014

a message from d.l.b.

Dirty Lil Bunny here bring you the Cottage Industry Easter News.
We will be closed on Good Friday as we will be eating a mountain of hot cross buns.
On Saturday you will find the Tall One in the shop as usual, 11 until 5, you know the guff.
Next up will be Easter Sunday, of course the Cottage will be closed, that's what happens around here on a Sunday (except in December). There will be a clutch of chocolate eggs to be eaten, an ocean of tea to be drunk and a bit of napping to be had.
Easter Monday will run pretty much like Easter Sunday with the shop shut and any chocolate left from the day before will be finished off.
By Tuesday we will be pretty bored so the shop will be open once again.
Oh and then Friday is ANZAC Day and we will be off playing two-up down the RSL so the shop won't be open but then Saturday rolls around again and things will definitely be back to normal.

If you are in town for the Easter break and can't make it to the shop during opening hours then please feel free to call or drop us a line to organise a private appointment.

Hope you have a relaxing break!

Much love


Saturday, 12 April 2014


So the shipment of yarn finally arrived (after DHL finally read the paperwork that said 'FIS' and stopped demanding money from me) and I delivered it to my knitters (who can't start knitting because their elastic yarn shipment hasn't arrived). Then I spent most of the week dyeing the undyed stock I already had and now we have a lovely new range of colours and as I have no undyed stock to dye I get to have a break from dyeing this weekend and do other things that I started two months ago.
The first glove orders have been going out and we've had pennant orders coming in. I on;y managed one day at the studio this week but I did get to play with the welsh blanket patchwork I started last year sometime and now we have some special cushions instore. They are really quite beautiful, the the welshie colours and patterns mixed up. I am itching to make more but sewing is taking me forever with this bung wrist, frustratingly. There is so much to do in the studio at the moment.
I am still working out when we will be closed over Easter, definitely Good Friday, Easter Sunday (well we are closed on Sundays anyway) and Easter Monday, that just leaves the Tuesday in limbo and of course we will be closed on ANZAC day.... what a harsh week for us poor little retailers!
I need to spend tomorrow moving stock about and laying our baskets of gloves in pretty spectrums. I've packaged almost all out beautiful pennants and now I need to find space to have the boxes of them out on display.... where and how I have no idea! It's definitely time for a big re-jig of things but sometimes it is like rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic.
I have to say this week's rain has been absolutely lovely! I know I keep nagging you about your Winter wardrobe but come on people it is time! We've also got a big shipment of lovely Lisa B socks arriving in the next week or two, three boxes are winging their way to us, bubba, women's and men's, of course we still have lots of stock in the shop but we will have more colours and designs coming (and new special colours not released yet  that we are getting a special preview of).
OK, better go find the cat, vacuum the shop and sort gloves out.
I'm in the shop until 5pm.
Come visit!

Saturday, 5 April 2014

not smiling, yawning

Morning all.
Well to be frank, this has been a right shit of a week. As you know I am not the type to pretend to sweetness-and-light-and-isn't-everything-great when in fact I am sitting crying and exhausted. I think it all came to a head on Monday night and now the tears have uncorked I am still a little weepy. I think seven months of wrist shit has worn me down to a raw and sensitive nub. One of our wholesale customers commented that she couldn't believe I was still smiling. Ha.
On top of all of this I am attempting serious money juggling and trying to work out how much work my wrist is capable of. I did manage a day in the studio yesterday and made a big batch of 'hot water bottle' wheatbags and I treated myself by cracking out the wool stash and making a tunic top based on our 'harvest smock' pattern. It's the same base as the patchwork tunics were made from last year, oversized and one size only in the most beautiful brown and black wool fabric with Italian brocade lining. I now need to raid the stash a bit more....
Daylight savings switches over tomorrow. Thankfully. It's been so ridiculous for it to go on for half the year and the mornings have been so dark. Everyone is droopy and lethargic and I am sure all our internal clocks are out because of it. Bring on Autumn! And school holidays have started for some people I see.
I start glove dyeing tomorrow and our 103kg shipment of wool is on its way from New Zealand. I've had to scour the house for all of the undyed gloves that Jethro has 'hunted' and presented to me in the last couple of months. He doesn't hurt them in any way, he just likes to deliver them to me. It's cute and sweet and very funny.
OK, time to shake a leg.
Lots of woollen cardis and sweaters for your perusal. Time to stock up on enamel pie dishes for crumble making. And don't leave the purchase of the wooden Easter toys to the last minute! They are still available online and I hope to get the ceramic bunnies up there too this weekend.... and the Slade knits.... never ending things to do....
Oh and I am shopgirl today if you are looking for me!