Can you believe it’s time for another quarterly update on news and views from The Little Dog!
How are you all? Hope 2019 hasn’t been too harsh so far with its life curveballs? If it has, fingers crossed, you are over the worse and have some good friends and family around you to lift your spirits and keep you pushing on.
It’s been a bit of a rollercoaster start to our year. The current political mayhem is certainly having an effect on trade which is exactly what the fragile retail sector didn’t need. It looks, very much, like we are in for some stormy recession weather ahead. For the moment though, the sun is shining, the weekend feels full of promise and I am sitting in a brand new studio space which is clean and organised to within an inch of its life.
This is incredibly rare and a sweepstake has already been placed on how long it will last. Once, sometimes twice a year, my design space undergoes a BIG Spring clean. In between these deep cleans it is often mistaken for a burglary scene. The “Anna cleans” are such a spectacle, that each member of Team Little Dog cannot resist leaving their area to stand in my doorway and watch this rare event!
You may remember that we started a major DIY office renovation last year. Despatch moved first, Admin & Logistics moved over in January and this week, it was Designs turn for white walls and new flooring. Very exciting! We now have a whole room, with natural light for photographing product, a whole room for Design and by mid-April, Alison’s R&D fabric creations will move upstairs. Which means all the creative rooms will finally be next to each other. Hoorah, may the creative juices flow and the mess stay contained!
To Reuse And Reuse Again
As we are all pretty keen on make do and mend here at Little Dog Towers and no-one likes waste, we try to create our trade stands with the view of making use of the visuals and props after the show. We reuse all the lino flooring from our trade stands which is enormously satisfying, even if it does make Little Dog Towers appear like a flooring showroom. This year’s trade stand display artwork has become the floating walls for the new open plan office workspaces. The floor has been painted grey as a temporary measure until the rubber flooring can be laid and the bar has been stocked. Gavin and Nathan figured that as we spend near on 90% of our life at Little Dog Towers, it makes sense to make it a jolly place to work in, particularly on a Friday afternoon.
What’s On The Design Board?
And in between all this moving, cleaning, painting, organising, sorting and tidying, we’ve been doing a little bit of work! The call has gone out for the annual Search for A Superstar Calendar & Diary Competition. I’m starting a month earlier on the 2020 offering to ease time constraints and meet our trade customers requests.
There is still time to enter so follow this link if you’d like to know more Search For A Superstar.
This year I’m aiming to be prolific and am really excited to start some new subject matters. Still on the drawing list are chickens and ducks as well as the hares I started back in December. I’m also getting a little bit obsessed with the variety of bird life on my walks with the dog. Twice now I’ve seen the flash of turquoise as a Kingfisher goes whizzing by and it honestly made my week. Such a vivid burst of colour against the backdrop of drizzly winter browns. Amazing.
In the meantime, we’ve received lots of our new Spring stock. The new fabric designs should be arriving mid April, so look out for some lovely new handmade creations and I heard a rumour today that our travel mugs may even arrive a few weeks ahead of time which could mean a May delivery.
Something To Ponder
I’m also mulling over a germ of an idea to hold an open studio month at Little Dog Towers. Perhaps a few weekends in September or October. I’d love to put on another art exhibition and include more of the work from my fellow creatives. It would also be lovely to meet the furry muses that are part of the Little Dog’s Hall of Fame. Someone suggested including sewing/craft/art tutorials or classes which is something myself and our wonderfully talented Alison might run. And of course, there would be a Little Dog shop full of goodies, bargains, samples and slight seconds. A bit like putting on a party, the fear is no one would come but it would be great to hear any honest views and suggestions on the idea.
Discounts and Loyalty Codes
And now for the really important bit. Special Offers! I’ve finally got round to sorting the Sale section on our website and have added two new categories.
Slight seconds contains some true bargains if you can live with an imperfection or two. Our quality control is very high so when we say slight seconds, the emphasis really is on the word slight. In fact, in some cases, it may take you some time to find the fault! The other new section is called Special Offers. In this section, I’m planning to create between 4 and 6 special offers which are exclusive to our website and only last for the single month they appear in. April is all about our Douglas The Boy Wonder and before I start promoting it on Monday, you are very welcome to have an early viewing and also enjoy this members only 20% offer code as an added extra.
Simply enter the code “Spring24“* at the checkout. This code expires on Sunday 7th April at midnight and unfortunately excludes all original artworks and products in the sale sections or trade orders.
And that’s all I have time for, which is a pity because I didn’t even get to tell you about the Your Dog magazine mint tin debacle. Another one of my fine messes the team had to dig me out of, I’ll save it for Facebook when the issue comes out in May!
Wishing you all a lovely weekend and lots of warm sunshine to warm your bones and make you feel glad.
Take care, Anna Danielle