Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Inspiration: New York City

Where I come from, the first thing tourists flock to is the Mighty Columbia River. It’s large, its mighty, its historical, its…really really wet.

The second thing people flock to in my hometown is the highway, heading to Seattle or Portland.


Now, I’m all for small towns, especially when its your hometown. Small towns have a kind of charm nothing can replicate. I love the neighborhood barbecues and family-friendly block dance parties. And who doesn’t love running into your sixth grade teacher at the Mexican restaurant-you know, Taco del Familio-where she reminds you that your paper on President Clinton is very over due.

However, life goes on. You meet a guy, you fall in love, you move across the country and start a whole new life amongst millions of strangers who don’t care about overdue middle school papers. They do care, however, about what you wear and if you support the Yankees or Mets.

New York City is full of history, culture and beauty everywhere you look. I could ramble on and on about such structures as Trinity Church, The Chrysler Building, Central Park Zoo, Grand Central and even Time Square-all the famous structures you see in every movie set in the city. (Seriously. Ever notice how every apartment in a movie has a perfect view of the Empire State Building? That building gets around!)

However there’s so much beauty in small ways, too. Places tourists never think to notice. An old fashioned bronze mailbox in a corner of Grand Central. The sea green foam on the Staten Island Ferry. Rows of restored old brownstones on tree lined streets. Or seeing the face of the person you love most in the world as he comes out of his office building at the end of the day.

Ok, enough mushy! Sorry!

What I’ve learned from this city, in terms of my crafting and my art, is to always include the unexpected detail. Find a way to add tiny surprises and bits of charm-like simple peach beads and brown feathers on a sea shell wreath. Or tiny fairy charms amongst fall foliage and  acorns. It could be something as simple as a fun name for your product, such as a wreath of daisies called Daisie Mae!

It is great when a customer looks at your product falls in love and takes it home. Its an even better feeling when they return and say, “You know, that wreath has been hanging in my dining room for six months and I just now noticed that cute little charm on the left hand side! Its so sweet, I fell in love all over again!”
New York is like that. At first, you’re taken up by the major glitz, glam and lights! After a while, though, when the fascination begins to ebb and the romance fades away. But when you take a second glance and see all the tiny bits of charm, you fall in love all over again.

(Ahem and if you’d like to fall in love with a wreath, head over to my store! Lots to choose from, and more coming soon! And they’re all hand made in New York; hang a bit of the Big Apple in your home!)

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