We are now officially twenty-five years old at QVC UK – in other words, we’ve been broadcasting for a quarter of a century and I’m pretty sure lots of you have some great memories from those twenty-five years. I was put on the spot live on air at just before 2pm on Monday (the time we went live in 1993) by our newest presenter, Alex Kramer, presenting a cake version of the first ever item we sold – a VW Beetle alarm clock! I was also treated to stunning flowers in autumnal shades and Alex asked me if I had a highlight from my time at QVC. There are far too many to mention, but the Joan Rivers broadcast from Atlantis in the Bahamas will always have a special place in my heart because of ‘pagoda-gate’! Watch this clip to be reminded of the story and also to see my confusion last Monday… genuinely, I didn’t have a clue what was going on!
The cake was a brilliant idea, which was the brainchild of our presenter performance manager, Sean, and it was executed to perfection by wonderful Jo who is in charge of our prep kitchen for all the cooking shows. I cut a couple of slices to bring home and distributed the rest among my backstage and production office colleagues. The flowers I kept all to myself! I also had flowers from my family, along with chocolates (unopened as yet) and cards which contained such thoughtful words – I truly do know how lucky I am to be surrounded by people I love and who love me back.
In the evening of the birthday, I attended the dinner at the Ham Yard Hotel in the West End for people who have been with QVC for 20 and 25 years. Even combining those two milestones together there weren’t that many people, although I must say quality wins over quantity every time for me. It was a lovely evening with great food and excellent company. I love this picture of Claire, and her husband, Dan, enjoying the cheesecake dessert while having a top up of wine!
And this is a nice one of the trio of presenters in attendance – Dale and Claire celebrating twenty years and yours truly twenty-five. If you’re wondering why Jilly Halliday wasn’t there, as the second longest serving presenter, it’s because she started in January 1994 so it will be her BIG celebration next year.
I mentioned above that Alex is our newest on-air presenter, but from today she will no longer hold that title! As you probably know, we have now extended our ‘live’ hours on QVC Style to 3pm – 7pm every day so we needed to recruit a new presenter. Kathryn Goldsmith will be presenting her first hour on QVC Style with me at 6pm tonight, so please do tune in to welcome her if you can. Some of you may already have seen her on Facebook Live on Beauty Day but today is her first on-air appearance. Another Kathryn! We have Catherine, Katy, Kathy and now Kathryn so if you are a ‘wannabee’ QVC presenter maybe think about changing your name!!
Well, we are now into October so let’s talk about the gem of the month: opal. It’s also the gem to mark the 14th wedding anniversary, if you don’t have an October birthday but love the stone. The name comes from the Greek word ‘opallios’ meaning to change colour. Not only will we have plenty of the white opals on offer this month, but we will also be featuring the wonderful orange ‘fire opal’ which does not have the colour change properties of its cousins. I’ve picked out a couple of my favourite pieces for you featuring coloured opals.
The first is a ring with a Peruvian pink opal, surrounded by rhodolite garnets and set in rose gold. I think this is so feminine with the three different shades of pink.
The second is a pair of earrings featuring the Australian blue triplet opal, a fabulous colour to have near your face. The opals are framed with a halo of white topaz and set in yellow vermeil (gold plated on to silver) – it’s great price too, at just £45.
This is my weekend off, and tomorrow I am going to give a speech at the Southampton branch of Rotary International as they continue with their pledge to ‘End Polio Now’. Unfortunately, there have been eighteen new cases of wild polio in 2018 in Pakistan and Afghanistan, despite the vaccination programme that Rotary helps to fundraise for, but they are determined to continue their efforts to rid our world of this paralysing disease once and for all.
I hope to be tuning in at some point on Sunday though, to order the Molton Brown TSV, although actually it’s already available on our website, so I could do it ahead of time and spend Sunday varnishing doors!! There are two options available – a Men’s or Women’s one, and they are set up in three separate gift boxes, so it’s a great idea for Christmas presents, large and small.
Whichever option you choose, there are two 300ml bath and shower gels, a 300ml handwash, a 100ml bath and shower gel, a 100ml body lotion and a festive bauble! And, whichever option you choose, it’s less than half price and also on three EasyPay installments. We’ve also just launched our extended money-back guarantee on Christmas gift shopping to the end of January.
Finally, before I finish, a big thank you to all those who entered the mega competition. The winner has been chosen but we’re still waiting to hear back from them, so do check your e-mail inboxes in case you’ve won. Remember to check your Junk folder too, as sometimes emails can get lost in there! If the winner we’ve contacted hasn’t responded by 5.30pm on Monday 8th October, we’ll have to randomly select a new winner, so don’t miss out and double check your e-mails to see if you’ve won this amazing prize.
Have a fabulous weekend and I’ll update you with house pictures next week.