A year through the shop window

It’s thanks to our local pub quiz at the Elderfield that I now know the meaning of the word Anatidaephobia (irrational fear of ducks) and Doraphobia (a dread of touching the skin or fur of an animal), or better to say, thanks to the genius quiz master, Lou, and her bottomless pit of obscure phobias. But so far, we’ve never had a word for irrational fear of future window displays. Without a name, it’s hard to call it a thing but I think it’s what I suffer from pretty much every Christmas holiday. I lie awake picturing the empty window not able to conjure up anything new to fill it. I think about how in a year’s time, I’ll be writing an end of year message, and what if there are no pictures to include, and what if the window remains empty and the ideas don’t come back.

And the cure? Well I don’t really know how to explain it, but I’ve learned over the years how to get back to sleep by reminding myself that the bucket of window ideas which always ends the year completely empty, has a marvellous and slightly magical way of refilling as the year begins..

And so by way of reassuring you (and me!) that it really does work, here we are with another rear-view year of Wild and Woolly windows..

And now it’s time to say thanks – for Ideas are all very well but without the generous, slightly exasperated but extremely skilled help of Alessandra Rigillo, they would likely never become  windows at all. Special thanks too, to Hana Whaler, whose beautiful sign writing just always manages to speak with the voice of our window.

Now behind the window lies the shop of course, and the magic of what has happened here this year is also down to a pretty marvellous load of collaborators, to whom more thanks is due than this modest message is really appropriate for, but I’m going to attempt it anyway..
Wendy Peterson for bottling up her precious knitting wisdom into such pefectly formed Sunday morning classes, Helen Reed for giving her joyful, popping candyish energy and skill to the Sweater Club, Annie Black for her countless acts of winding, wrapping and washing up kindness, Renata and Andzelika for keeping the shop clean, and of course Brontë, for so very many things but mostly her encyclopaedic knowledge of what to knit, and what to knit it with, and how to make it, and without whom none of you would have got your beautifully wrapped parcels. But most of all thanks to you all – for giving us your trust, letting us play a part in your hats, scarves, sweaters and cardies, and by sharing your boundless warmth, creativity and inspiration with us.

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