Sunday, 31 May 2009

Motivational Speaking 101


Kind of appropriate for me at the moment. After 2 craft fairs in a row at which I failed to sell anything, part of me is ready to throw in the towel. But I'm trying to get in touch with my inner 2-year-old - the one that said no! loudly and repeatedly and refused to give up doing what she wanted to do. Or that tiny little part of me that kept going through countless lessons and 4 driving tests before finally passing at the fifth attempt, aged 23. Or the part that gets on a horse despite feeling sick at memories of a painful fall 12 years ago, the part that made me start jumping again.
The point is that this is something I don't want to give up on - I enjoy doing it and it makes me happy (most of the time). I don't know why I didn't sell anything - maybe it was the location, maybe people don't have the money, maybe I'm just not a saleswoman, but there's always next time.
I'm working on the look of the stall all the time - at the moment I'm trying to think of a good way to display my bags. They currently get laid on the table, but I need some kind of rack to hang them on. It needs to be small enough to stand on a 6ftx3ft table, so if anyone's got any ideas, I'd love to hear them.

Friday, 29 May 2009

French Fancies

Well, I promised I would show you my French Fabric Finds, and here they are:

These 3 are blue checks and stripes. The one on the left was just 99c, the dark stripe 1,99E, the pale gingham was also 1,99E

These pretty cottons were 5,99E at metre. The last one has 3 photos because it was extra wide and the design gets more complex as you go across it. I wonder if it's meant for very light weight curtains?

Thursday, 28 May 2009

Please Help a Fellow Blogger

Just wanted to let you know that Jayne over at Snapdragon's Garden is looking for people to take a photo of one of her lovely badges and send it to her for her catalogue - you get to keep the badge, provided you'll definitely take a photo.
Jayne is such a lovely person - she offfered to lend me a sewing machine when mine broke down even though we've never met and live at opposite ends of the country!

Friday, 22 May 2009

Devizes Craft Fair 23 May

Don't forget that tomorrow (sat 23rd May) the craft fair in the Corn Exchange, Devizes is on from 9am. I'll be there, along with many other craftspeople. Do pop in and say hello!

Wednesday, 20 May 2009

City of Light

I'm back from Paris!

I'm afraid there's no vintage pretties due to lack of funds and lack of confidence in my French skills! I also forgot that you're meant to barter in the flea markets, so I thought everything was too expensive. I did find a great fabric shop (Marche St Pierre) in Montmartre, 5 floors of fabric, at very reasonable prices, even with the poor exchange rate. In fact, Montmartre is the best area for fabric shops - there are loads around there. I did buy a few metres of fabric - I'll show those another time.

Meanwhile, enjoy some pictures of Paris.

Saturday, 9 May 2009

Charity Shop Bonanza

Yesterday I went on an impromptu trip to Taunton. Mr R&B was going there for a meeting so I decided to tag along for the ride. We caught the 8.30 train (very sustainable) and arrived at quarter past 9. He went to his meeting and I hit the shops. I easily spent about 3 hours looking around, then I had a coffee. Himself rang to say his meeting had finished, so we met for lunch (an omlette for me and ham, egg and chips for himself). After that we got back on the train and went home.

I've never been to Taunton before and I'm very glad I did - there are about 10 shops along the main shopping road. 1 or 2 aren't so great, but I did find one gem of a shop with sensible prices and no bought-in new goods (chain shops take note!). I probably could have bought more than I did, but I didn't want to go over the top and we're off to Paris next weekend, so there'll be more stuff to come. Here are some of the pretties I found:

A brand new 'Country Diary of an Edwardian Lady' quilt £5. The sales lady said it was still in it's packet when they received it and she'd only put it out that morning. I've no idea where it's going to go, but I'm sure I'll find a home for it.

2 fabric pieces, 50p each. I was amazed to see a box of remnants (I never see fabric in the shops at home) and I nearly missed them, but I heard another customer rummaging.

This little picnic basket, £2.50. Sadly empty of it's contents, but will come in handy for my craft fair table.

This lovely original painting, £10. I wasn't sure whether to buy it or not, but I dragged DH to have a look and he seemed to think it was ok, so I bought it. It really needs a frame, so it won't be going up just yet.

I also bought 2 old Ordnance Survey maps, but those are for the DH for his birthday. He likes looking at old maps!

We've been at the allotment today, digging some more beds. With luck we should be able to get lots of things in over the next few weeks. We've already planted strawberries, a rhubarb crown, runner beans and early potatoes. At home we're growing on courgettes, pumpkins, butternut squash, tomatoes, aubergines, sweetcorn and various other things.

I'll post some pictures another time!

Sunday, 3 May 2009

Sunday, Sunday....

Well, yesterday was the second of this year's craft fairs in Bath. After last month's miserable showing I wasn't looking forward to it - I didn't sleep much for worrying about it. In the end it turned out pretty well - I was only £7 away from paying for my table. I've yet to see £12 of that as it's for a commission, but fingers crossed it'll all go well.

I've had many a dark moment over the last few months wondering if I'm doing the right thing in trying to get all this going - but yesterday was so encouraging. In just a month, my table looked much more professional, I had carrier bags and I've actually sold some items! Roll on next fair!

Unfortunately I had to turn the job down as I wasn't happy with the contract, but I'll be making the most of the time I've got now. I have loads of ideas for new products - a painted range, novelty cushions and notebooks to name just a few. We're off to Paris in a couple of weeks and I intend to do plenty of 'research' in the flea markets. A few items may also find their way home with me (thank heavens for Eurostar!), which should give me lots more inspiration!