Welcome to the blog for Embroidered Originals, where I'll keep you up-to-date with all the goings on at our little cottage industry. You can also view our website and shop online at embroideredoriginals.co.uk Marion x

Saturday, 15 January 2011

Time to move on

I've popped back here to this blog a few times over the past week, just to look at the pictures of my Dad again, and I've been loathe to write another post and so consign him down the page, but now it's time to move on.
Friday night - today was supposed to be a day of catching up with accounts, but I hit an obstacle early on ( I'm never going to get to grips with this money business, and accounting for it), so I had to make an emergency call to my accountant - which means more money : 0( - and I've got to wait until Tuesday before she can sort things out for me. It's all thanks to this stupid VAT increase.
So the best laid plans... I never feel I can start the business year properly until the accounts have been updated, the bills paid and everything is shipshape.
The other major job this week has been our new website. It's going to be a big 'un with every single product we produce carefully documented, as well as every separate colourway and text choice. It's taking FOREVER to upload all the information, and I tend to work on it each night once the house is quiet - so guess what I should be doing right now!
But the big push is on now as it's being launched at the Trade Fair in Glasgow next weekend. (I hope).
It will only be available to trade buyers, but don't despair if you are not one of those - there is nothing on it that our main website doesn't already have.
Other news this week, Barbara and I had our postponed staff Christmas lunch on Thursday. The snow put paid to the original date, but I have to say I probably appreciated it more in January. We went to the Upper Largo Hotel just along the road and had a really nice meal - they do do a good lunch!
We've also had someone along to measure up and quote for replacement windows. As ours is an old cottage, we want the original windows relpaced with exact copies, rather than modern ones. So that means a LOT more money. It's a complicated job making sash windows, but I'm sure it'll be worth it.

This is a pic from last Christmas, but it shows one of the living room windows. What you can't see from the photo is the state the windows are in ( actually this one is one of the better ones). They rattle in the slightest wind and the wood is pretty rotten in some of them.
So a big expensive job, but it will be great when it's all done. Then it's the bathroom next and let's see, maybe the kitchen and last but not least a porch/utility room. Dream on.
It's been relatively mild today - and quite sunny. Bob took time off to go for a long 15 mile walk along the coastal path, and I was able to spend time out in the workshop giving it a spruce up, without needing my thermals.
Kind of hints that this
might not be quite so far away.
Ahh... breakfast in the garden....

Sunday, 9 January 2011


On this day fourteen years ago, I said goodbye to my Dad. He'd struggled through weeks of serious illness, unaware of Christmas and New Year, but  the dark days of January were to beat him.
When we visited him in intensive care, there wasn't much of him to recognise through the tubes, lines and drips. But his hands lay over the covers and I will never forget them - so identifiable as Dad's. He had farmer's hands though he'd never been a farmer, reddened with the cold because he refused to wear gloves, strong and solid but bruised and scarred from his many DIY mishaps, and the part of him that is still with me in my mind.
My sister and I miss him a lot, but not half as much as Mum, who has had to make a new life without him.
We left him behind in the 20th century - he had never used a computer, a mobile phone or a video recorder, let alone a DVD player. He would have been gobsmacked that Mum now surfs the net on her laptop and watches DVDs.
He left me a legacy of his looks ( yes, I look in the mirror and see my Dad, while my sis looks in hers and sees Mum - guess who drew the short straw there!). But I think he also left me his cheerfulness, his smile and his poetic talents ( that's more than slightly tongue in cheek, by the way). He was reliable, hard working and eager to please.
He could tell us a good bedtime story when we were wee, made up as he went along, and he was always whistling in his own funny way.
So Dad, this is for you.

What Good's a Blogpost Without Pictures?

Who wants to read it when there's no "eye candy"?
But it's been so dark lately and the days so short, there's hardly been a chance to take photos.
I've been busy uploading stuff on to our new website ( for Trade Customers only) which will go live just before the Trade Show in a couple of weeks. It takes a long bottom numbing stint in front of the computer screen every day. Groan.
We also had a remarkable response to the Christmas Sale on the main website ( and it's still on here ). Lots of trips to the Post Office over the past few days with parcels going to Australia, US and Canada, as well as closer to home.
Still not properly back in the swing of things though - I'm in kind of a dithery mood - flitting from task to task, not finishing one before starting another. Very counter-productive.
And still keeping ridiculously late hours, though there's no need.
So that's Resolution number 3 failed.

Tuesday, 4 January 2011

Another Attempt

Hello again. If you read yesterday's post this will make more sense.
It's another late one, but I've been plodding through the chore of uploading photos for our new Trade website. It takes an achingly long time, I can tell you, and so repetitive.
But it has to be done.
So I stopped a while ago and turned my attention to this blog - did you see what it looked like yesterday?
Anyway, I've gone for a soft simple duck egg blue this time and to add a bit of colour there is a detail from one of my textile designs (Campanula, it's called) along the top.
Well I think it will stay as it is now for a wee while.
Haven't quite got back into work mode yet - that's for tomorrow.
Today we were over in Edinburgh doing a bit of sales shopping ( unsuccessfully) and also visiting the Turner in January exhibition at the National Gallery. Easily one of my favorite artists - so ahead of his time and such an amazing colourist.
But I also took some time to study this again. I love these embroideries every time I see them.
This is the work of Phoebe Anna Traquair and is the first in a series of four entitled "The Progress of the Soul".
It is a staggering 180cm high (that's approx 6 feet in old money) and is worked entirely in silk and metallic threads on linen.
I could stare at them all day and marvel at the stitchery.

Monday, 3 January 2011

Not Too Sure About This

Do you ever find yourself bored with nothing to do? The evening stretches ahead of you, nothing on telly and it's too early to go to bed?
Well I've got the simple answer to eat up those empty hours.... get yourself a blog ( if you don't have one already), decide in a simple naive way that it could do with a freshen up for the New Year (get rid of all those snowy pictures and worse still those snow falling widgets. Who needs to be reminded?)
Then start to have look over that wide wide web for a nice bright optimistic background to herald the Spring. Mmmm this one? Or this? Let's try THIS one. That looks OK, but the header colour clashes, and the font colour, the title colour etc etc. Right (two hours later) that's it's all tweaked and adjusted. But wait, it's citrus yellow (my least favouite colour) we can't have that.
Start again. ( 3hours later). Here's another one. Make all those changes again. Nah, don't like it.
(4 hours later, very slight exaggeration) Desperation. OK, this one will do. Quick, make all the changes, AGAIN, then switch the damned thing off and go to bed for what's left of the night.
And now it's the morning. The day stretches ahead full of work and chores to be done.
But maybe I should just check this blog again to see what I finished up with last night....
But it will have to stay until tonight at least.
What do you think? Too busy isn't it? And that pea green header colour.....


Related Posts with Thumbnails