I can remember my first visit as if it were yesterday. I was travelling through London from my home, here in Gloucestershire, to Kent with the intention of surprising my father on his 60th Birthday. I had telephoned the Needlework Buyer, Miss Amanda Sherwin, and I had explained that I would be in London for a few minutes and could squeeze her in if she had a gap whilst I was changing railway stations. How little I knew about the power of The Buyer, and how lucky I was that she thought this so funny she would see me. I am still amazed that she agreed to see me.
I had to do all this without mentioning my visit to my husband, who was very nervous about dealing with large London stores. I remember arriving at the shop and heading off to the ladies to change into my one business outfit. I can still recall the lovely scent as I walked through this gorgeous shop, the atmosphere and the feeling of butterflies in my tummy. I told myself that I was just going to see behind the door marked private!
I really did not think I would have any success, but as a result of that meeting The Inglestone Collection supplied Liberty of London for over 25 years – we made it into the catalogue and even had an item featured in the Christmas window. All this was when there was a whole floor of needlework, knitting and, of course, glorious Liberty fabrics and their bridal department. Anyone fancy starting a petition?