Friday, 29 November 2013

The Good Web Guide Awards

Good web guide awards

As most of you know, we are located in a really rural situation. Gone are the heady days of high heels and shoulder pads when we lived and worked in London, dressing up for me now means a recently hosed down pair of wellies.

So, it was not without a little trepidation, that I ventured up to London with my husband  in tow to attend the Good Web Guide Awards Reception as we had been shortlisted for Best of British Website.  I am not even going to mention where my little black dress and smart court shoes came from….but suffice it to say that they were not mine.

A long term friend of mine lent us her pied a terre on Wimpole Mews (dead posh) and it was from there that I hobbled in my size 4 shoes (I have size 5 feet) gasping for air in my size 8 dress (I am a ‘good’ in fact ‘really good’ size 10) to the venue in Albermarle Street.

The reception was great fun where we caught up with old friends, made some new ones and were finally able to put faces to some virtual friends.  The drums rolled and sure enough Jonny’s Sister was crowned Best British Website 2013 (I am hardly going to blog about an awards ceremony if we did not win am I?!). I breathed in even harder,  lifted my poor bruised feet and collected a rather lovely  inscribed glass award.

After a late supper,  we headed back to  Wimpole Mews. I could take it no longer so ……carried my shoes and unzipped my dress under my coat……what bliss!

Note to self: I must remember to make some slightly rounder and larger footed friends for next year.

Friday, 27 September 2013

Famous for a day by Jane

The week before last I was invited up to 10 Downing Street as part of a team of small businesses to discuss ways that the government can help us. Apart from being hugely flattered, I had never been to Number 10 and was dying to see inside. After meeting up with everyone at the Horse Guards Hotel (lovely hotel so long as you don't get landed with the bill) we all trooped over to Number 10. We all felt very smug as we filed past all the tourists and through the gates, all desperately trying to look as though this was 'just another meeting with Dave'!

As you go through the door, you realise just what a huge building it is. Full of wonderful antique furniture and paintings. In fact in one room they have 2 Turners over a fireplace.

The meeting was very good, some excellent points were raised and we really felt that they were listening. After the meeting we had a tour of the place which was a mixture of beautiful formal rooms and old rooms that hadn't seen a lick of paint since Gladstone.

We managed a pic outside with Daniel Korski (Special Adviser to the PM) which was good as we were originally told that it might not be possible. Sadly I look like Daniel's mother who dropped by on her way to the shops!

All in all a great day and fingers crossed that some of our suggestions are put into action.

Monday, 24 June 2013

You're Hired!

*Please insert The Apprentice theme tune here*

In June 2012 I started the Apprenticeship scheme, and now I am very pleased to announce that I have finished! Yippeeee

It doesn't seem like a year ago that I started at Jonny's Sister, but in my time here I have learnt so much and have established what my strengths and weaknesses are within business. I have now been taken on full time and keep bugging Jane for a fancy job title (I'm hoping for customer services queen or something similar!). People keep asking me if it feels any different now that I have finished my apprenticeship, and although my job role has stayed the same I now feel that I have an increased amount of responsibility within the company and I want to push myself further so I can continue to learn more. 

Big thank you to Janey for taking me on full time and here's to the next year to come... Who knows what will have changed!

Lady Jane Sugar - "You're Hired!"

Friday, 14 June 2013

Let Go Wild!

So this week amongst the Father's Day rush we took some time out to do something a little different...
Jane's brother, Jonny, has created a very unique and original drink called 'Wild'. It's kind of like a very classy and upmarket alcopop! The drink is a gin based sparkling cocktail infused with either elderflower, plum or sloe. As there are 5 under 20 year olds working at JS HQ at the moment, Jonny thought that it would be a good idea to do some market research on us. We agreed in a flash. To say that we liked a drink would be a bit of an understatement, 10 bottles later (and slightly giggly) we all came to the conclusion that it was our new favourite drink. Each flavour was unique and so refreshing, the elderflower tasted of a summers day in a beer garden, whilst the plum tasted of a night out. We are all very excited for these to be released into the bars and clubs of the UK and have our fingers tightly crossed for an invitation to the launch party (hint hint Jonny!).

So in the near future if you see a Wild on the shelf of your favourite bar or club, we highly recommend that you get one!

From left to right we have... Sloe, Elderflower and Plum!

Shannon, John, myself, Alec, Sam & Hollie enjoying the Wilds! 

Wednesday, 6 March 2013

Last minute Mother's Day card

If you have a tendency of leaving things to the last minute, this quick and easy card is a very thoughtful way of letting your Mother know that you haven't forgotten about her this coming Sunday!

What you will need…

2 or 3 sizes of coloured tissue paper circles (If no tissue paper you can use magazine or other lightweight paper.)
Craft glue
Regular card folded in half
Acrylic or watercolour paints
 How to…
1. Using your tweezers pick up a tissue paper circle, scrunching it with the tweezers into a puckered flower shape.
2. Dip it into the glue and place, glue side down, onto the card. Once it has stuck, use the tweezers to increase the pucker of the paper if desired.
3. Use the same method to add a smaller paper circle in a contrasting color to the center of the first circle and smush with tweezers. Add as many as three layers.
4. Paint on a stem (can use a felt tip if no paint to hand)
5. Write a personal message inside

Wednesday, 13 February 2013

The Apprentice... has come to Somerset

Hello, my name is Hannah and, along with Shannon, we make up team apprentice here at Jonny’s Sister. When most people envisage an apprentice they think of someone working in a large corporate company, constantly on coffee duty. Then after 6 months they are finally promoted to using the photocopier. However things are a little different here. There are 4 of us, so Shannon and I make up 50% of the workforce, although that doesn't count the dogs and the chickens. 

Shannon (left) & myself (right)
before cocktail sampling in London
There are so many advantages of working in a small company, one of them being John makes the coffee! However, on a serious note because it is a small company we get to work in all areas of the business. From customer service, to stock control and PR to feeding the chickens we are constantly being exposed and gaining experience in all aspects of running a business.  We are encouraged to work to our strengths rather than continually trying to improve our weaker areas (although some jobs just have to be done!). This is great as it means we end up working not only in areas that we really like but, as a result, areas that we are strong in. Shannon and I are like a jigsaw, her strengths are my weaknesses, and my strengths are her weaknesses. We’ve only found this out by working in all the various areas.  This is great as it means that by the time we have finished our apprenticeship we will have a good idea of which line of business we want to work in.  Some people go to University and do courses that they have little or no knowledge of and then 3 years later and in their first job, realise that it is not for them.  We won’t be in this situation as we get exposed to EVERYTHING, and have already realised that some areas (like accounting) are just not for us! 

I've been a member of the team at Jonny’s Sister since April 2012, and an apprentice since June 2012. Already I have done 4 retail shows including the Spirit of Christmas. We’ve just had our busiest Christmas ever and although it was soooo stressful, it was great fun at the same time and we both learnt so much from it. Then in January we went up to London for 2 days to attend a trade show to get an idea of the trends for 2013 as well as checking out the trends on some new cocktails!

See ya soon!

Hannah x