Friday, September 28, 2007

Shop diaries #457382

Life is almost completely about work at the moment, so why pretend otherwise.

The shop is coming together nicely. I've bought lots of things to make it pretty including some lovely red velvet chairs that make me want to sleep in them, a beautiful white shelf thing which the lovely Megan has referred to as "the Ritz", a cash register, some stools, some beanbags, some stock...

I've been in discussions with my experts about which white - alabaster or ricecake - to use.

I've filled 4 large orders, which Murphy's Law dictates would arrive at a point in life where I am kind of busy with other things, but the money is extremely welcome.

I'm going to Auckland tomorrow with my "everything" advisor. Primarily for the gift fair on Sunday, and I'll also be checking out a counter and meeting my lovely sales rep.

Life is ALL GO. I'm wondering when the champagne, jet and expense account start. And when do I get my Macbook?

Here is a little something from the Phoenix Foundation, to get you ready for the weekend. Cheers Emily.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007


Big news in these parts sees Glen joining the family firm (and by "family firm" I mean Wanda Harland Enterprises). Yessirreebob, he done quit his job, after 16 years. We are VERY EXCITED. We'll be like Dooce, except not at all, because I won't be making a living from blogging, and Glen is different from Mr Dooce, and we have boys not a girl and so on.

I may have to give up my "life's too short" philosophy and knuckle down to earning the bickies, but I really suspect I won't. I didn't get where I am today (Reginald Perrin) by sweating the small stuff. Obviously I should write a self-help book. I am full of the terminology (as I imagine it, never having read one. Although I have seen the Oprah show, that must count for something).

And yes, I went to see Ratatouille this morning with the chiddlers. I loved it, the animation is so beautiful. Wanna know the last 5 movies I've seen in the theatres? Ratatouille, Shrek 3, Curious George, Simpsons Movie, Happy Feet. Going back further will only reveal more kid flicks. I'm pleased most of them are quite good (glaring exception being Happy Feet wtf?)

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Playin' with Zoomin

Here is a map with our new shop.

Shop Diaries #something

I have got the keys to the shop in my hot little hands. Wheeeeeee!

It lived up to my expectations of gorgeous potential when I went in today. The kids had a great time running around making echoes. In fact, they seem to spend their whole days making loud noises. Holidays.

I went to a great business seminar last night. Rod Drury talked about Xero, and how the new reconciling function is like Tetris, and it really is. I take a whole new pleasure in doing accounts these days.

I think the best thing about these seminars is chatting to other people. Networking doesn't need to be about getting business contacts who will help you or buy your product, it can just be about meeting people who inspire you to keep going. I met a jolly nice chap who is launching a great first aid(e) product in November - it is called Aide, and his process and logic was so interesting.

Oops. My blog is going all business. Um, Jessica Simpson. There, I've lowered the tone.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Rueing the heady days of drunken blogging...

This is as close as I come to drunken blogging these days - 2 martinis. Hmm. All it seems to mean is that I make heaps of typing mistakes, but am not drunk enough to roll with them.

I'm quite busy. Understatement really. I'm VERY busy. Just when I was quite busy, a fax rolls off the machine last night with another mighty order (I made that sound so natural, in fact it is only the second fax I've received since I got the machine).

The shop plans are coming along nicely. I've been doing lots of scoping out other shops for shelving systems and signage and so on, and it turns out that any plans I had were about 400x as elaborate as any given shop in the Wellington region, so it will be sweet setting up.

I've done lots of boring logistical stuff, and not yet managed anything glamorous like graphic design. I'm trusting that I'll engage people that like living on the edge as much as I do.

Right now I'm off for some enforced R 'n R watching Top Chef, then it is back off to make some more goodies.

Hope your weekend is just as rock n roll as mine.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

New glasses

New glasses
Originally uploaded by Wanda Harland
I can see SO CLEARLY. My old specs were 5 years old, had been chewed by the dog, and probably needed updating about 3 years ago.

My new glasses are splendidly shiny, don't fall off my face, allow me to see more detail than I'm altogether comfortable with on other people's skin, and I'm not squinting at all! I can feel the wrinkles at the corners of my eyes sigh a breath of relief, and vanish.

Okay, so I'm dreaming.

Update: It has been pointed out to me by a couple of people that I look a bit scary in this picture. It is quite odd, because that is exactly how I look like to myself in the mirror, but I suppose I must look friendlier when I'm talking and so on. And you know what? I'll never know what my back looks like either.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Arrr avast me hearties

I can't do pirate speak, or any other accents for that matter. Maybe a passable American one, but not so passable that I'd do it in front of an American. And I can oot and aboot like a true Canadian.

It is speak like a Pirate Day, and strangely it hasn't had a massive significance in my life. I'll have to make a special effort to play with Malo's very excellent new pirate ship. Ahoy!

I went down to the beach earlier. Today is so beautiful, not even a slight breeze, it really is splendid. I can't imagine what life would be like if it was like this all the time. My friend owns several cafes in Hawkes Bay, and said it is really hard to get anyone to work in the weekends, because the weather is so perfect that people don't need anything else boring like money. They have barbeques and beaches.

Whew, managed to write some words without going on about a little shop...

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Shop diaries 4

I started writing another post about what I'd do if I was Queen of the World, but it seemed that everything was related to sleep... which is my subconscious being EXTREMELY UNSUBTLE. Stupid subconscious, what does it know? I didn't get where I am today by being well rested.

Today I felt like I got into the stock shopping for reals. Bloody great fun it was too - I've got some fantastic hats. These hats I saw in Auckland last year, and berated myself for the rest of summer for not buying one. You'll have to come into the shop to see them.

To appease all the parents that seem hellbent on looking after their infants purity, I've got some lovely organic stuff arriving. It is quite weird to be trying not to focus on baby stuff, so I'm not fighting the urge too hard, I love babies, and so do lots of shoppers.

I met up with Nikki the Marvellous Jeweller Who Keeps Me In Fabulous Bling. I'll be stocking some of her creations. Once again, instore. Um.

And I've been daydreaming about the opening. Primarily of the grog at the opening, because frankly all this work is wreaking havoc with my social life. Havoc.

Tired, incoherent, probably fairly boring. Foux de fa fa.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Shop diaries 3

Every inch of my brain is being devoted to work at the moment. Somehow I managed to host a birthday party for Malo on Saturday, but still kept shop business in my head.

I've had a change of heart about the name. It wasn't really doing it for me, I think because I want the shop to be so much more than just a baby shop, and honestly, unless you're in the market for baby stuff the name "Babylicious" is only going to hold marginal interest. Also, my shirts are mainly sold in gift/design stores, so it is following that strength too.

I decided since it is MY shop, I can call it whatever the hell I like. So "Wanda Harland" is reborn, as a shop.

It feels right. It means I can sell whatever I please. I was initially resistant to the name because I imagined people finding the blog and thinking "cor, she isn't very professional", or something. But now I think that I'm not trying to create an empire, I'm doing this for myself, for fun and hopefully some money. I can't name the shop my real name because of that other Martha.

I may have a change of heart in two days, but at the moment I'm really happy with Wanda Harland.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Alvin and the Chipmunks

Wanna hear a chipmunk do rugby fashion commentary? Check out my guest spot on the Dropkicks. Love the Dropkicks.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Beboozled, bamfuzzled

I can only do bullet points Thursday (because of overexcitedness and possibly dirty-martininess)

  • I just got the best order. Perhaps I should be doing more sales calls (ie SOME sales calls)
  • Tonight we eat beef (although sadly I don't own beef's hide - yet).
  • Too speechless (writeless) to go any further, because of first bullet point. More later.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Shop diaries 2

Well, things are about twenty thousand times closer to happening than they were yesterday. The bank has come to the party with the money, and now I can realise all my dreams of stylish light fittings and floor coverings, not to mention some substantial spending at the gift fair later this month. Woo hoo. For a while there it was looking like we might be snaffling all the fittings from my house, which would be innovative, because who would've thought of using a kitchen bench as a counter?

With my new found wealth, I popped into Backhouse to look at Kartell lights. Bloody Kartell don't do big ones though, so there goes that idea.

I want to get the biggest cowhide I can find for the floor. We went up to my parent's house in the country in the weekend, and I was having seriously impure thoughts about the cattle beast's coats. My vegetarian father was not amused. If anyone wants to go and quietly slaughter me one of them, and tan the hide, I'd quite like white with black spots. Thanks

Monday, September 10, 2007

Bullet point Monday

  • My chewed glasses are soon to be replaced with extremely tasty new ones.
  • The curse of the optometrist appeared again today, when I showed up for my appointment, and there was no appointment. They said something about rescheduling until tomorrow, I muttered something about how I would be happy to see anyone, and stayed very still, and thankfully got seen. Perhaps the curse has been broken.
  • The week is full of appointments, so that my Google calender is looking all chock full and important.
  • I think I'm on ASB Business tomorrow morning. Feel a little nauseaus at the thought.
  • Amplify shampoo is shit. I accidentally used my old shampoo today, and my hair feels lovely compared with the last few weeks of aforementioned item.
  • I'm fretting about childcare, accountants, builders, packaging, stock, paint, light fittings, eft pos machines, staff... but mainly enjoying the fretting. It is good to be busy.

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Bloody universe

The universe is sending me messages. The latest one wasn't very subtle, it froze my computer when I tried to click the "buy now" button on the new ipod touch. I was just looking! Promise universe! My insatiable appetite for shopping is on hold! I swear guv'nor!

Mutter mutter universe mean to me mutter mutter wait and see if the bank comes through with the money mutter mutter very handy for new shop mutter mutter

Friday, September 07, 2007

Shop diaries part 1

My lovely sister has requested a shop diary, so for her (and anyone else), here is the beginning.

Some time ago, whilst talking about business, it was suggested to me by MG that I "take control of the supply chain" - or something along those lines - that sounded all businessy and efficient. I filed it away in my brain (and chucked out the file which helps me remember phone numbers), and didn't pay it much attention until it came time to write my business plan for the Cable Car Challenge. The process of writing the business plan really helped me cement some schemes and thoughts into tangible business strategies, but to be honest, I wasn't REALLY thinking much about retail until I saw the PERFECT SHOP.

That was 4 days ago. Since then I've signed and paid for the lease, organised eftpos and credit card, started some prelimary design ideas (with the help of the fabulous Rosie), had loads of really great advice, enjoyed a great deal of hilarious discussion on the Wellingtonista mail about names (Marthaload, School Girl French, The Marthacular Conception, Pantz, The international marthahood of the traveling pants, Martha2.0... and so many more brilliant suggestions) - who can believe I decided to stick with Babylicious?

Today we went in and did a measure up. We'll need to take out some walls and some carpet, but it is pretty lovely. It was a bit hard to get decent photos, so here is one with my handsome dad, and one with my handsome son, to keep it interesting.
Malo at the shop
The very exciting doors. Exciting
Terry and Malo at the shop
The very exciting white walls. Yes, we will get rid of the curtain.

Thursday, September 06, 2007


A crazy, crazy week.

I've leased a shop. It is on Jackson St, and we're gonna get in there in TWO WEEKS. I can't believe it, it has all happened very quickly - from seeing the shop on Tuesday, to signing the papers today.

It will be called "Babylicious", and that is all I know. I'm vaguely thinking it will be white and gorgeous.

Now, I just need shop fittings, stock, staff, childcare...

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Foux de fa fa

I really would like to call my shop Foux de fa fa, but won't, being too sensible and all.

Here is the video, pour Pamela

Hairy bitch

I was waiting for the dawg to do something real bad, and sure enough, this morning I couldn't find my glasses. They've showed up now, but considerably more scratched with no plastic cover on one arm, and now sit with a jaunty angle.

Damn dog. Mind you, I've had them for 5 years now - they've survived 2 toddlers. Probably time for a fresh start anyway.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Drumroll please!

The winner is da da da da da da! (I used this ultra scientific service for a random number)

Ben Kepes

Congratulations Ben, your tenacity has paid off, and you are the winner in the great Wanda Harland undie draw.

Thanks all for your efforts. I quite enjoyed it, perhaps I'll do them more often.

Mr Kepes, please flick me an email wandaharland at gmail - chur

Monday, September 03, 2007

The weekend was sweeeeet

Spring is here, and it is SUNNY. I'm very optimistic about a good summer at this stage. I know the wind will be shit soon, but the days are so much longer and brighter, I don't really mind.

Saturday we went down to Oriental Bay to marvel at the loveliness that is this city, and gaze at the houses we'd like to own thankyouverymuch. The golden sand at that beach is a TRIUMPH. It isn't the softest sand, but it makes the sea look so freaking attractive.

In the evening I had a hot date with some hot mamas. We went to Mighty Mighty to see the Wrongdoings. It was a fantastic show, they are a fabulous band. I feel a personal connection to them on many levels, marvellous Mitch drums, other character was my first pash (blush), and Reta the singer went to my primary school. I tells ya, this country is a village.

Sunday I was feeling a little slow, not due to alcohol, but rather due to an early Fathers' Day start. Croissants are the order of the day for special occasion brekkies, so I was up at dawn cooking, espressoing and juicing (I should be honest and admit that the croissants simply needed heating, the juice pouring - the coffee was a bit more effort, but a lot of fun now our machine is fixed). And in the afternoon a lovely birthday party with good food and company.

I like weekends like that.

Today I'm daydreaming about a shop. My shop. Hmmm.