Saturday, 18 December 2010

I'm dreaming of a white Christmas.....

Well, it really does look like we'll be having a white Christmas.  First one in I don't know how many years. 
While it does look very pretty from the inside of the shop, it does create havoc on the roads and boy is it cold!  Still it may just force us all to have a relaxing Christmas!

It's true to say that retail, especially independents, find business a bit more challenging, and we're pleased to say that out customers have been very loyal to us.

I read the following on the website of one of our favourite suppliers, Best Years and thought I'd post it on here for you all to read.  You can see more from them at

"I can’t say that I am a natural ally of thinktanks, especially one called the New Economics Foundation but I’m raising a loud cheer for a report that they have just published called “Clone Towns”
The report states that 41% of UK towns are “clone towns” which they defined as having more than half the stores are multiple retailers. Only 36% of high streets surveyed retained their distinctive character.
Cambridge came in for a particular bashing. The university landlords have reacted to the recession by increasing rents to the point that independent retailers have been forced off the High st and have left just a bland mix of muliple retailers who can be found anywhere
As a soft toy wholesaler who only supplies independent shops (plus really nice multiples like John Lewis and JoJo Maman Bebe) you can understand why we heartedly agree with any report supporting independent retailers but why should any one else care?
Well, places like Brighton’s Lanes and Whistable who have a thriving community of independent retailers bring in visitors from all over the country. They come, and they spend money! An interesting and diverse high street will attract people and their pounds which surely is a good thing
Although the very large shopping centres such as Blue Water also bring in visitors from miles away most ordinary high streets with a Next, Marks and Spencers and Boots do not bring in anyone who is not local.
Independent stores with their unique ranges not only add a welcome diversity to high streets but also foster a sense of community. Who are you more likely to have a chat and a laugh with – the girls on the till at Boots or your local shop owner? Who is more likely to care about you getting the right product a multiple retail employee or a local shop? They know that they have to provide the right service and the products whilst the multiple is able to fall back on advertising and price promotions
So a big hurrah for the cheerily named New Economics Foundation. I hope your report gets loads of publicity and re-ignites the debate about our fabulous independent retailers"

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

Great success at the Christmas Fayre!

Well, last Saturday saw us celebrate Love Me Again's 2nd birthday. Champagne and mince pies were provided as a way of celebrating with everyone who stopped by and with that we had the annual Staplehurst Road Christmas Fayre.  As ever hundreds turned out to support local businesses and stall holders.  As well as our shop, we also had a stall where we were pitched next to Hither Green Deli's stall.  They were selling delicious turkey and cranberry rolls as well as some spanish omellete and lasagne plus Italian cakes and coffee...It was absolutely freezing but standing next to all that lovely food made it very bareable indeed!

We sold out of pink mini scooters, which was unexpected as the blue ones had sold out twice before that.  Our new City of London train sets also sold out and our new stock or Clever Box Club play sets were very popular.  Many customers took adavantage of our buy one get one half price on all the nearly new clothes...happy customers, happy owners.

We're just waiting on our delivery of sledges, although now that the snow has gone...There's always next year.

Hope to see you soon

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Bliss...what a great charity!

We at Love Me Again went along to the Vintage Tea Party event held in Hither Green over the weekend.  We had a stall there and were glad to be a part of such a worthy cause.  The event, was as its name suggests, vintage inspired, from the decor, to the music, to the activities laid on and even the delicious cakes and tea all served on vintage crockery.  Everyone there was supporting Bliss, a charity set up to fund research into the prevention of premature births as well as support to babies and  families affected. You can find out more here  Helen who organised the whole event, is a local mum who has first hand experience, after giving birth to her daughter, Freya Mae at 32 weeks. Helen is an inspiration and kept her cool on the night (outwardly anyway!)  Find out more about her story here

Friday, 12 November 2010

New Catalogue Now Available

We have finally finished our catalogue for toys which we can pre order for you in time for Christmas.  In the catalogue you will find lots of lovely traditional, some funky and some ingenious items that you can't find on the high street.  If you place an order with us before Sunday 21st November, we'll give you 10% discount and on top of that we will deliver to you (providing you live within a five mile radius).  One thing I will definately be ordering for my son is this fantastic green camouflage castle, from the Clever Box Club company.  Kids always like to play with cardboard boxes and with these, they can also be personalised and decorated.  Also available in pink!  Click below to see full catalogue.

As we head towards Christmas, we will also be opening on Sundays from 21st November 12-4pm.  So come on, shop locally at our enchanting little shop.

We have also signed up to Wedge Card.  For those of you who haven't heard of it, Wedge Card is a reward card for over 1400 local and independent shops that gives you discounts for shopping locally and helps promote and protect independent traders. Local shops are the buzz on your high streets. They are the friendly faces, the unique products and the personalised advice. They are the lifeblood of our communities. We want you to take a walk around your local shops with your Wedge Card and feel the buzz on your local High Street!  You can obtain a card form the link below.

Tuesday, 9 November 2010

Pre Order your Christmas Gifts!

We have been very busy compiling a catalogue of lovely toys and gifts.  You're sure to find that extra special something that you won't find in other shops.  Gauaranteed delivery before Christmas and we'll even deliver free to your door, within a 5 mile radius of the shop.  Will send an announcement when catalogue is ready.  It will also be available in downloadable PDF format from the website...coming this week!  And if you still need a further insentive to shop with us, when you place an order, you will receive a 10% discount off stated price.

Here's one of our favourite items that will be featured...

Priced at 45.00, we think this would really impress your little girls friends.  Also available in blue

Wednesday, 3 November 2010

What an imagination...

Just thought I'd add this on.  My youngest daughter, who has just turned 4 is so into Barbies at the moment. So, with special guests Superman, Strawberry Shortcake and friend plus a couple of Puffles and Mr Men, the party was well under way. It was so nice to see how she mixed the usual toys with the traditional wooden toys we sell at the shop, the cakes and biscuits are all available at Love Me Again.  Captured the moment and I think it shows just how lovely little kids can be and how their imaginations work!

Come and see...

We have had great response to our new clothing range from Petra Boase, who makes the cutest organic range of babywear and Helen Gordon who designs and makes gorgeous dresses and fairytale themed pyjamas.  We already stock a range of her cards, wrap and notebooks which all follow the same theme of Hansel and Gretel, The Three Little Pigs and Knights and Dragons and we just know that her clothes will be also be hit!

We also stock the best travel change mats, made by a mum of two who lives local to the shop. Her change mats always sell out.  All completely different, with different designs, they seem to have the two major points mums always look for when buying for their baby, style and practibility.  They even fold up like a clutch bag, complete with a button fastening.

Oh, and just incase you were wondering about the wardrobe...Unfortunately we decided it wouldn't work in the shop so put it back outside so someone else could lovingly bring it back to its former beauty!

Saturday, 30 October 2010

Wardrobe anyone?

I spent the afternoon working at the shop today, Bettina worked in the morning but on the crossover we ended up catching up on shop/home stuff.  After grabbing a sandwich, we decided we may as well use the time productively and decide on a plan of action for the coming weeks leading up to Christmas.  This  always ends up with us making lists so we don't forget what we've discussed.  It's a very simple but effective way of making sure we try and accomplish all we have discussed.  Anyway, having covered what we needed to cover, Bettina made her way home.  Two minutes later she calls on the shop phone to tell me that there is a small wardrobe on the street. 

I tell her to wait by the wardrobe as I have customers but as soon as they leave, I lock up and scurry down the road to see it.

Someone has put it outside their house as they don't need/want it in the hope that someone will take it away.  That someone was us.  It's a small dark wood wardobe with loads of character, probably 100 years old, but painted white it could look perfect in the shop. When we first opened,  I had a vision of wardrobes with no doors, housing the clothes and shelves full of toys.  It never came about and we ended up going with conventional shelves and rails.

Anyway, try as we might, the wardrobe didn't seem to work in the shop.  It's such a contrast to the shelves we have.  I'm usually all for contrasts, but this just didn't look right.  The only place it would look nice is on the back wall but that would mean moving the till and cables around...

We decided we'd sleep on it and decide over the weekend.  Will keep you posted on what we decide!

Thursday, 28 October 2010

So Sweet...

We have just had the cutest delivery of babywear by Petra Boase.  Babysuits, vests and bibs, all in vintage style prints on organic cotton.  We've seen her designs at various trade fairs and always admired but never got around to ordering anything until now.

Off course we also have an amazing array of nearly new clothes for children 0-6 years as well.  A cord Tommy Hilfiger boys blazer is my favourite item at the moment.  It's age 3 years, so unfortunately not the right size for my boy.  Toys are also a big seller, especially this time of year.  Our micro scooters are proving very popular. 

Our shop is always worth a visit, whether you just want to browse, recycle in style or buy something new!

Wednesday, 27 October 2010

Cute Kids

Had some cute kids in the shop today.  Two little girls aged 2 and nearly 4 and so sweet.  The way they spoke and interacted with eachother.  Little girls have a lovely way of speaking so matter of factly and knowing.  They were with a lady who was mum to one of them and looking after the other.  The mum was looking for a swimsuit for her daughter and the other little girl was telling the lady that she really should buy her a swimsuit too as she may want to go swimmimg one day.  It was all in the tone, very confident!

Had a new delivery of farm animal wind up torches.  These are always popular and sell out fast.  Think it's the cute faces on them myself.

Tuesday, 26 October 2010

Gearing Up for Christmas

Spent a lovely morning in the shop today.  Even though it was dark and grey outside, somehow inside the shop with it's beautiful heart light in the window, everything looks cosy.  The light, even though on all through the year, at this time of the year, it reminds me of our opening.  We opened just before Christmas in 2008 and the heart light was only supposed to be a Christmas decoration, but now it just looks like it belongs.

Lots of new toys coming in this week.  I know we're still in October, but in retail, as soon as September comes, you're gearing up for Christmas!
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