Suffering a sense of loss, here. Went into town (Dublin) Saturday morning with a deep desire to buy lots of little haberdashery trimmings. My favourite shop for these sewing bits is the Woolen Mill. Or, should I say, was. Got there about 10.00 to find the windows shuttered and ‘Closed Down’ notices on the door. Aghast! It was the most way-cool, pokey sewing shop around. Not part of a large chain, it was an independent trader (been in business 124 years, apparently).
It had everything. It was an everything in up-in-granny’s-room-behind-the-clock kind of place. Fixtures and fittings from years gone by. Half-mooned brass handled drawers… brass metre-length rules screwed to the edges of the counter work-tops with a patina of age and usage (I bet they had their inch, feet and yard measures somewhere about though, as well as their bushels and pecks… ).
Not that the stock was old fashioned. They sold sewing machines including various stabilisers for machine embroidery – the only OTHER shop (big chain) that stocks fabric and trimmings look at me like I’m speaking in tongues when I ask for this stuff. They have no clue or give a wet slap what I’m on about. ALWAYS try to fob me off with interfacing.
And, their shop doors opened out to firstly, a bench sculpture (functional art – plenty of room to sit), featuring two life-size women sitting, having a chat, with a large shopping bag at the feet of one of them. This was perfect for the times Mr Tree came along and didn’t want to engage in any ‘What do you think, cream or white? Shall I get just the one metre or two?’ type conversations. He would sit outside and read until I was done.
Secondly, a short road crossing just a few feet further, is the river Liffey and the Halfpenny Bridge. There are benches along the side of the Liffey there and a coffee place which made it one of those nice places to sit, grab a coffee and watch the world go by and gloat and finger the beautiful-just-boughts from the Woolen Mill.
And now it’s gone. I feel kind of bereft.
Deflated, we sat by the river anyway (Saturday was a lovely day! Sunny and warm) and watched the water sparkle. Then I spotted a shop I’d never seen before. Just over the bridge – ‘Beads and Bling’. So, thought I’d have a look. Well, it’s not haberdashery and it’s not the Woolen Mill but it has every bead you could imagine. It is chocka full of jewellery bits and millinery stuff. They also sell lovely proper pieces of felted wools and gorgeous buttons and ribbons and oooh lovely things, darling. A dragon’s den of treasures and delights. AND they run hat and fascinator making classes, among other things so I think I’ll be putting my name down for one of them.
So, feeling a little better, I bought a bag full of bits (my treasure) and it kind of compensated for the sad demise of the Woolen Mill.
I made the phone case in the pic above from some of the felty wool I bought. Quick and easy. Took the pic in a favourite mug of mine. It’s used for dropping in bits like safety pins, pennies, tweezers and the little twiddle-de-dees that don’t have their own home around the house. You can see it’s been broken (a couple of times now) and glued back together (badly) but the cat on the side is too lovely to make me throw it away. I have looked and looked for a replacement – the artist’s name ‘Elaine Turner’ is stamped on the side) but cannot find one. If you know, could you tell me where to find another, please? (I eagerly await the inundation of an e-mail from Mrs Trellis of South Wales on this but can only hope).
As an aside … Just in case any of you have the same issue… our telly has been going a bit mad… kept cycling through its inputs… HDMI1, HDMI2, PC, No Video Signal…. etc and would not fix on the telly so we didn’t watch anything over the weekend. Mr Tree Googled (It’s a Toshiba) and found that to fix it, you need to pop the back off and disable the control panel buttons on the side of the screen. Odd they cause the problem as we never used them and only ever use the remote. If you want more information, Google or drop me a line and I’ll get the specifics from Mr Tree for you).
Anyway – got to run. Looks like the sun is shining again…