Wednesday, 5 February 2014

February - hard work, but a lot of variety

Rachel testing out a new buttoned wrap
January was something of a mad rush trying to get things ready for exhibiting at a trade show in Glasgow, followed by sending out the urgent orders taken at the show.  Our new buttoned wraps were Canongate Jerseys & Crafts on the Royal Mile in Edinburgh and Tartan Plus on Buchanan Street in Glasgow.   If you can't get to the studio or to either of these shops you can of course buy from our website -
very well received and some have already gone off to two of the shops we supply -

Anna Macneil has just been featured in an e-news publication called SLOGAN - an email campaign that goes out all over the world for those with an interest in Scotland and all things Scottish.  Have a look here - and Have a look to see the offer from Anna Macneil.
why not register to receive future editions by email.  It is full of special offers from featured organisations. 

This week I finally got the new Anna Macneil catalogue finished and my husband has put it onto the website - have a look here.   It is a big catalogue, so takes a wee while to load - please be patient!

Yesterday Mary and I did a bit of playing - we needed some pieces of felt for wallhangings.  So we had a nice hour or so guddling about with bubblewrap and soapy water as we massaged the wool fibres to make the felt.  If you fancy having a go yourself, why not come and do a class with me - see website for details.

Lauren wearing one of our Hebridean Hoods
My granddaughter Lauren was 15 a couple of weeks ago.  She is very keen to be a hairdresser, so I gave her some hairdressing scissors for her birthday.  This looks as though it is going to be a very worthwhile investment as she cut my hair yesterday - and a really good job she made of it!  She had instruction and supervision from Carly and Cat at Gorgeous - a hair and beauty salon in Inverness. 
new haircut!
The lovely girls at Gorgeous help us out with hair and make-up when we are doing photo sessions.  The latest of these was the one we did last month at Clava.  If we get some nice snowy weather we may do another session to get some nice winter pictures for hats and scarves, but otherwise it is likely to be the summer before we do another such session.

Back at the studio this morning I got yesterday's felt pieces onto the embroidery machine and made some oystercatcher wallhangings that will shortly be posted off to the Blue Pig Gallery at Carloway on the Isle of Lewis.  I have a few more small pieces to make to complete the order.  Beauly Gallery just a few miles away.
I also embroidered and made up some long narrow wallhangings for

Mary spent much of today cutting out tweed for making our cosy Hebridean Hoods and gorgeous wraps.  We are trying to get ahead and build up our stocks for the very busy summer season which will be on us before we know it.

This evening I was in the neighbouring village of Kiltarlity giving a talk to the WRI about my exploits over the last two years weaving Harris Tweed.  My presentation seemed to go down very well and I had lots of questions along with compliments for my tweeds which I had taken along to let them see.  I am looking forward to getting back to weaving.  Because of the trade show last month I din't manage to visit the Isle of Lewis in January, but I am planning to go there on Saturday for a week.  I just hope that the threatened gales don't reach The Minch until after my ferry crossing.

It seems almost every day the news bulletins are reporting on some weather related story - floods, gales or snow, but here in Inverness we seem to have escaped it all.  We have had a bit of rain and wind but nothing to write home about, certainly nothing like the south of England has been getting.  But the Isle of Lewis ferry has experienced a lot of cancellations due to bad weather.  We are all looking forward to when the new ferry comes into service - due this summer - and hoping that it is a more stable ship.  All being well, I will get to Lewis on Saturday and have a full week at the loom.

So....... the hard work continues, but it looks like the variety will continue - we have orders for shops for hats, scarves, bags, wallhangings, cushions, wraps, purses, keyrings.  All we need now is to figure out how to fit 12 hours of work into an 8 hour day!

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