Seems like everything old is new again. I’ve spent the last couple of days making an ‘old’ product I haven’t tried in awhile, Magpie Boxes,as a reorder for a long time customer with a shop in MA. Meant to inspire like minded collage artists, these are kraft paper boxes stuffed full of collected loot to tantalize collectors. Everyone that looks at them sees something different. But if I’ve packed them properly one thing will jump out as a must have. “Looks like my kitchen junk drawer” accused a studio visitor who dropped by while I was in the middle of construction. Obviously he’s not a believer. Because to a flea marketeer like myself, they’re full of pure gold.
Settling into the middle seat on the plane for the flight to Florida, my window seat mate asked if I was traveling for business or pleasure. “Oh, for FUN!” I answered. “I’m going on a girl’s trip with my friends-since-5th-grade posse”. He looked stunned, then admitted that he didn’t have ANY friends from that long ago, much less a posse. Really? How sad that sounds. There’s no friend like an old friend and I’ve got a habit of hanging onto people. It’s a special comfort that comes along with friends that shared your childhood, remember your family (especially the ones that you’re missing), played in your backyard and can nod along with all of your stories. Getting together is our fountain of youth. When we gather it’s non stop talking, laughing, and joy. We’ll be ‘girls’ to each other forever, even if the lovely server that took this photo in the restaurant called us ‘ladies’.
For a membership card carrying introvert, putting myself out there for a day full of people can be a stress festival. But a recent Valentine Trunk Show at Sheppard Street Antiques in my nearby college town of Richmond, VA was a truly delightful day. Shop owner Sara Garza rolled out the welcome mat with a beeeeyoutiful photo filled pre show email to her mailing list. I worked my crowd with a full week of social media shout outs. As a happy result the store was a non stop crabpot all day. It’s always fun for me to hear buyers comments and to have the chance to test drive new card styles. Listening to their shrieks of laughter tells me I’ve hit a home run. Trunk Shows might just be my new favorite way to spend a Saturday. It’s kind of like getting a paycheck to throw a party!
Hey! Cute husband-n-me took a fast and furious up and back trip to NYC last weekend to see my favorite show on the planet, The Outsider Art Fair. The location moves around a bit but this year it was held in Chelsea. We arrived via train mid afternoon on Friday and headed straight to the Metropolitan Pavilion for a looksee. The show did not disappoint. My favorites were by the fabu French artist Girard Cambon. Amazing and humbling. Plus, he happened to be in the booth at the time so we got to do a little chatty thing where I acted like a fan girl and he blushed. And speaking of fans, Whoopi Goldberg and Talking Heads David Byrne are also outsider art collectors and both celebs swanned past us in the crowd. So we got to scratch ‘famous people sightings’ off of the NYC to do list. One word of advice for the 2020 show. GO.
I am practically hoarse. My voice is completely shot. Flu? Strep? Head cold? Nope. I just got back from a girl’s weekend. Nonstop talking (and listening) for three straight days.
These are girls of my way back past. I won’t admit to the number of years but we met in elementary school. And although we are nothing alike, we are exactly the same. Communication past holiday card swapping is rare but every few years we gather together to catch up. So we talk. And talk. These are real conversations, not the social small talk of cocktail parties and acquaintances. And it isn’t gossip or networking because we aren’t unkind housewives of the television type nor corporate ladder climbers. Certainly secrets are shared but you won’t hear them again. As one friend coined it, this is ‘pinkie swear stuff’.
The location and scenery were beyond gorgeous and the food and drinks rated five stars but you could give us peanut butter and diet cokes most anyplace and we’d be happy.
All good things must come to an end so after the weekend, bags we packed, hugs exchanged, trunks loaded. Lucky for me, I carpooled, so the three of us were able to continue the conversation over the long ride home. As one pal joked, too bad we couldn’t think of a thing to say.
My family has a tradition. On the first day of a new month we say ‘rabbit rabbit rabbit’ for good luck. This month, for the first time in thirteen years, I did not owe a landlord a rent check. That feels pretty lucky already.
For awhile now, my cute husband has had an idea about building a studio in our yard. So in January the idea turned into a plan, construction started and by early spring we had a finished ‘New World Headquarters’ for Visual Treats. I think the port-o-potty in the front yard was my favorite part. I can’t officially say I work from home but my commute of a few short steps makes it pretty close.
Work began the instant the door opened and we hit the ground running on card orders and planning for upcoming shows. It’s still a heap of unpacked boxes but I promise to share some photos as soon as we put Humpty Dumpty back together again. Rabbits or not, I’m thinking thirteen is a lucky number and unpacking? That’s a luxury problem.