So as lockdown starts to relax, and our stockists are opening their doors to customers again, the wholesale side of our business is grinding back into action. It’s lovely to hear from our trade customers, many of whom have become friends over years of working together, and very reassuring that things are starting to improve for them. Of course, there is still a lot of uncertainty which makes planning extremely hard. We can’t rely on things being like they were, so instead we will have to take each day as it comes. Very zen!
I was running the show solo in the absence of Kate and Dave who have both been on furlough. Now they are back on a few hours a week and it’s great to have others to shoulder some of the workload. We’ve been able to re-start our newsletters and improve our communication with everyone - hence a new blog post!
There have been some interesting learnings in their absence, I have had to handle Instagram (not usually my domain) and managed it, albeit maybe not quite to Kate’s standards. I also had to revert back to photographing my designs myself around the house, which was also quite rewarding, so I’m pleased I can do this if I need to!
We had to take some tough decisions at the start of lockdown and one of them was to slow up on investing in new lines until we knew how everything was going to work out. Things are beginning to look brighter now, and we're feeling much more confident about the Autumn, so newness is back on the calendar!
I'm hoping to have selected pieces of the new butterfly/moth range (work in progress above) arriving before Christmas, including a new mug shape and (fingers crossed) some other new surprises too. More news as designs develop. I'm also working on a set of wall-mounted flying Pigeons, as I feel their status needs elevating! This has caused me no end of bother, as I have struggled with getting the markings right, and I am waiting for my final print test to arrive, so it's naked for now!
On a less positive note, we have had a house fire here last week, thankfully nobody was hurt, but there is smoke damage throughout the whole house - just as we had sold it! We can use the workshop in the garden, which was our HQ anyway, but the house is pretty much off limits apart from the toilet and making drinks until the clean-up is finished. We are staying in an Airbnb flat for now but moving again on Saturday, who knows where to ??
So, if you are trying to get in touch, please bear with us, we are doing our best in a stressful situation and working in very reduced circumstances.
Lessons learnt: do a fire drill with your whole family, know where the extinguishers are, always have alarms (we did thankfully), and finally don’t put a plastic mixing bowl on top of a lit gas ring and leave the room….. I’m not naming names here…!
What will August bring I wonder? Hopefully a camping trip, some downtime and fully cleaned and safe house to go back to! Hannah