Raven Sees All
Diane Hanna paid us a call on the first Saturday in November. There were notebooks and Picture Poems and the best of all, Diane for the whole of a busy, warm Saturday. Diane’s visit reminded me of something my mother loved to say. ”Nothing lasts forever,” she said, while an unfiltered Camel cigarette glowed in her right hand. I believe now that she said this to a skinny 8 year-old so I would capture the moment of whatever “nothing” or “forever” was. It has taken me nearly a lifetime to appreciate how correct she was!
Diane’s visits will be remembered as pure joy, and though she will hostess her Writers Workshop in February (that is a “forever” thing!), her time with store appearances has come to an end. What fun they have been! We will carry her Picture Poems (another forever thing), and we will continue to host her for the workshop for as long as she desires. Thank you, Diane, for your amazing, creative self, for your spirit, your Maytag shoes, your layers of netting and tulle, and your patience and love for all of us who can’t get enough in one single visit. Thank you also for capturing the store raven, caught in hydrangea and landed for the month of October in our twig madness that now holds Christmas ornaments!
What is Her History?
Several weeks ago, a divine pair of clients brought in this terrific old photo complete with water stains and ancient glass. They gifted it to the store. The photo weighs a ton! Two equally divine worker-boys then installed this haunting creature above the store worktable. She watches over the place and greets those who enter. We feel quite protected, and I suspect she might have had something to do with the presidential election results. For which we are grateful!
Today's Deliver of Thirteen Boxes!
Some days are like Christmas! Some days I wonder what sort of drugs I was smoking/ingesting or what it was I was dreaming when I went off to the Javits for the gift show. Today was one of those days. Clearly the store is jammed with delicious goods for gifting others or possibly yourself. Rita Rose has her eye on a pair or two of Danielle Welmond earrings. I caught her trying on slippers last week and wrapping herself in these new amazing scarves from a mad California vender. Pop by the store before Miss Rita beats you to the goods. That girl has a mighty fine eye and pug pockets of cash to do some serious buying. Better hurry!
There is just something about a bundle of twine that I cannot resist! I shopped the Gift Show in New York, the Gift Show in San Francisco, and then, yesterday, the New England Gift Fair, which is a bit of a joke. But, trust me, I can always find something. And, if that “something” is twine in any shape or form, you will find me writing up an order.
I keep twine in the catch-all drawer in my kitchen and in the faux potting shed in my basement. I keep twine, at the ready, near the recycle bin out in the garage. I adore twine! Makes me think of bundles of money or yesterday’s stacks of old newspapers or my friend John and the way his kitchen twine trusses up a chicken just before he pops it into the oven. John’s roasted chicken is something to savor. Those loose chicken legs never splay from side to side when he has finished with his wrapping of white kitchen twine. For me, my chickens always look as if they spent one too many rounds on the barnyard dance floor. Oh, they are tasty, but I have yet to master the John method with the white twine.
So what I am asking you is this…looking for twine? We have twine enough to wrap the earth twice. We have braided twine from India, thin linen threads from Japan, beige twine, brown twine, taupe twine…Honey, we got all the twine one little store can handle!
LOVE...Need I Say More?
A nearly unbelievable thing happened last week! We, with the help of two talented people, finally launched the on-line store. Swear to God, it was like giving birth or marrying the third and (one might assume) final time. I believe this little caper will be a whole lot more fun than another marriage and maybe less work than a new infant. I hope each of you visit the store a time or two…let me know what you might be longing to see/buy or dream to buy. The products will shift and change like the weather and with luck, I will learn to navigate this baby myself!
Rita Rose...wart and all
Yesterday, a delicious box of kantha (vintage quilts) arrived at the store. First step is to bring them home and give them a good cleaning, then dry the dickens out of them, and then marvel at what beauties they are. Well, that little Rita Rose (still sporting the world’s largest wart) found the pile irresistible. We have some wagers going on at the store: HOW MUCH BIGGER CAN THIS WART GET AND WHEN WILL IT FALL OFF? It’s sort of like the football pool at any ten-man office…winner takes all. Dino is starting to flirt with Gracie, a bigger-than-him Golden. I think his passion for Rita Rose might be on the wane. I noticed last week he took out the little red motor scooter and was giving it a polish for those summer gadabouts. I wonder will it be Rita in the sidecar or Gracie?
"Markets of New England" Book Signing!
Christine Chitnis presented her wonderful book a couple weeks ago at the store. What a time we had! I know, for a fact, there will be gobs of well informed folks out there on the four lanes of summer travel hitting new farmer’s markets they had no idea (previous to Christine’s book) existed. We loved having her, her husband, and her beautiful seven month-old son. While here, Christine took some mouth-watering shots of the store…made me fall in love all over again with 6 Birch Street! We have put some of Christine’s photos on our website, and you can check out her site for more images. What I should mention is this…all the photography in Christine’s book is a credit not only to her writing abilities but also to her talents as a photographer. . Thank you, Christine!
Did I Say Mouth-Watering?
This is something I said I would never do…feature a tray of cupcakes before noon on my blog! These were created by a client for Christine’s event, and they were inhaled by all who entered the store. We are so lucky that we have amazing bakers who shop the store, who bring in goodies for me to try, and who make divine treats for many of our events. Thank you to Amy and to Lori for adding a couple delicious pounds to my not-so-skinny self!
Ancient Grains for Modern Meals
There has never been a time when being at Sofra (the wonderful bakery and cafe owned by Anna Sortun in Cambridge, MA) has left me wanting. Be it a meal, a cooking class or last night’s event: the book signing and launch of “Ancient Grains for Modern Meals” by Maria Speck. We sell this book at the store…I was smitten the minute I saw the cover, and I believe you will be too. This remarkable, well researched book is a delicious addition to anyone’s cookbook collection. It now sits on my bedside table for late night reading! Most of us know very little about grains…once, a few years back, I bought a tome on grains that took a weight lifter to hoist it off my kitchen shelf. Did I use it? NO! What Maria Speck has given us is a gift to good health…hold the burger, add the grains!
Lulu the Shop Sleeper
Was this ever a lucky break! I have found the perfect shopkeeper. When you’re in the neighborhood, you must pop in to meet her! I nabbed her off an Air France flight to Paris! Lulu was longing for a silver platter of oysters on the half shell served, as only the French can do, on a delicate bed of shaved ice. She was headed to Le Petit Zinc on Rue de Buci where once I asked a man to marry me…that was years ago and, for the record, he declined. (Which was a lucky break for both of us!) But enough about me and more on Lulu. As you know, Lulu was the constant companion of Wally, whose death last month has made this dear pug deeply sad. Now, I haven’t a clue why the trip to Paris…she claims it was for the oysters and who am I to argue. I would head there this minute for those very oysters and the light of the place, and I would wander down the side streets I so love. Lulu and I are avoiding travel, just now, and continuing with the management of 6 Birch Street…a little oasis of its own…minus the oysters and the wonders of Paris!
Wally's Garden Shrine
Wally loved the garden! The head stone was mined from the Cortez Mine in Northern Nevada…it is filled with glittery bits of crystal on its cut edge…a fine tribute to a dog who loved nothing more than a little flash for any occasion!
Bae's Monkey After Five
A couple weeks ago, Bae’s (my granddaughter) monkey came to the “House of Couture” for a little fitting of a dress suitable for a monkey and a matching one for Ms. Bae. Monkey spent the night, and by the afternoon of the second day there was no pleasing her…I tried bananas, peanuts, to no avail….the wine was best suited for such an occasion…after all how often do I have a monkey house guest?
Monkey Fully Dressed!
New Store Merchandise!
Come by and see the new/old footstools and chairs covered in vintage Kantha cloth! I have been gathering stools and old chairs over the winter months…which have been given a whole new life! We adore them!
A Few of Bonnie's Treasures
I have known Bonnie and her remarkable eye for a thousand years…she has agreed to take a wee space in the store. We are delighted! Bonnie shifts things around nearly weekly so keeping up with her and the wonders she delivers is such fun! Come by and see what is new/old each week.