Friday, June 17, 2005

Mid-month catch up

The felted napkin ring by Fredericton based felting artist Denise Richards.

Good grief, it’s Day Two already and this is a wrap up column where I try to string together several loose ends in some semblance of a ‘knitting’ theme. Hell, I’ve done more with less before.

The chorus of howling requests and hints (and you all know who you are) for pics of the felted flower napkin ring…here ya go. One felted flower napkin ring, created by Fredericton fibre artist Denise Richards or Richardson. I was actually planning to get her name right before I posted this but what the heck. Late breaking afternoon edition: We've heard from the proofreading staff and it's Richards. Definitely Richards. Just moved here from BC. Drinks coffee with cream in it. But it's Richards.

My new baby, still swathed in shrink wrap.

Also, in the picture gallery is my new to me knitting machine although in truth I don’t think the thing was ever taken out of the box. I have no earthly idea of how it’s going to work. I worked nights last night and am scheduled for the same tonight. And let’s face it, knitting machines are nowhere near as portable as the plain old fashioned ‘stick’ version. There is hope – I have Monday and Tuesday off without Brian and Oneida. Next week, school summer vacation starts. She’s thrilled. You know I am too. Liquour cabinet is almost completely stocked.

What else to tell you?? Liz is dying the silk I bought a few weeks ago. I have almost completely the main knitting of the burgundy shawl and hope to finish it up fairly soon. I have about 5 more rounds of the main body to knit before I switch to the lace edging but I’m at the stage where the rounds are now nearly 500 stitches each. It’s beyond tedious. I’m at the serious sighing stage of shawl production or as the Yarn Harlot would put it, I’ve got that whole black hole thing going on.

The silk as it was - it's currently enroute to purpledom.

Oh and I need to rant. Liz, you can stop reading because you already listened to this at lunch the other day.

Recently, I discovered I have a need to purchase some Precious Metal Clay aka PMC. It’s basically Fimo except the polymer part is pure silver or pure gold. I want to work in the silver. I’m going to have to lay out a bit of cash to purchase it and the little firing pot/torch. This is all fine. I have something in my head where I need this stuff before I can take it from “idea” to “reality”. I can buy acres of the stuff from mail order houses in the US. There is NO shortage of merchants willing to separate me from my cash when it comes to this stuff. Instead, I do the ‘good civic-minded’ thing and call my local art supplier.


First I get into a 5 minute conversation of ‘no, I don’t want FIMO. I want PMC. No, it’s not the same thing. No, really, that’s what it’s called. I want PMC Plus or PMC 3. No, it’s not FIMO. Yes, I know what FIMO is. I have about 93 shades of it here. NO, seriously, it’s different. Same idea. Different.

Once I get Miss ‘’yes, we have FIMO” settled down to a dull roar, she doesn’t know if they have it, if they can get it, if I should pack my bags and go to hell now or later. She’s going to ‘talk to the buyer’ on my behalf. She takes my name. She takes my phone number. This should be entertaining and it is.

Flash forward to the next day: I enter said art supply store for the purpose of buying some foam core board. At the cash register, whilst paying for said foam core board, I introduce myself to the employee as the person who inquired yesterday about the Precious Metal Clay and did she know if the store could procure them.

In starts with the litany of excuses from “I don’t know” to “we don’t deal with that distributor”. She goes on and on and on and on, until I was actually embarrassed for having asked for the stuff in the first place. I honestly don’t know what’s with these brick heads that they can’t seem to figure out if ONE customer is asking for it, perhaps other customers might be interested in it as well. She made it very clear that it was just too much effort for anyone at the store to find out if they could stock it or not. The final touch was “if you leave your name and phone number, the Buyer can get back to you”.

I finally confessed that it wasn’t that I couldn’t find it elsewhere. It’s that I had this stupid notion that I should try to support my local business. Trust me when I say I won't be making that mistake again.

What really sticks in my craw is that this will be the same troupe o'clowns bleating on the local CBC whine fest about how our downtowns are dying. Yes, they are because the pack of pickleheads which currently attempts to pass themselves off as 'merchants' haven't the sense to provide anything remotely resembling 'customer service'. Hint: I can't buy what you refuse to stock.

By the way, two days have passed and I've yet to hear from the oh so fearsome and awe inspiring 'buyer' -- the owner -- and I suspect I won't today either. It's okay -- like I said at the opening, I've already found people willing to separate me from my cash in this matter and by the way, it's not going to be a small order. Whatever...I've got more pressing things to worry about than this yokel's lack of business sense.

End of rant. Normal service has been restored.

Talk at you'se all laters; thanks for reading.


At 10:53 AM, June 17, 2005, Blogger Liz said...

It is Richard, like Maurice the rocket Richard, only its Denise Richard. And as far as I know she doesn't play hockey.She does do wicked felt though.

At 4:21 PM, June 17, 2005, Blogger Dudleyspinner's Tie Dye Rovings said...

Kate, I know what you mean about the customer service mental breakdown of store owners. The ones that do well actually get it. I worked at a grocery store here, the sign in the breakroom said "the customer is always right" belive me they werent, but were always treated as if they were. This is the store that just expanded into a new state of the art store. The Ben Franklin, whos owner could not remember you even though he had taken your check a hundred times, is now defunct.

At 2:41 AM, June 18, 2005, Blogger Liz said...

I have a history wih this store and it's sister store.
I have little to say beyond small town.
Bad karma

At 7:17 AM, June 18, 2005, Blogger Dudleyspinner's Tie Dye Rovings said...

Kate I made a button to link to your page. send me your email and I will explain how to make one.

At 7:48 PM, June 19, 2005, Blogger Diana said...


The felted napkin ring is absolutely gorgeous. That definitely gives one some knitsperation.


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