Friday, May 20, 2011

Tooth Update, Charlevoix, Maison Jardin

                                               I have to begin this blog with an update on my tooth. My trip to the dentist revealed a tooth cracked to the root thus no repair was possible. So I am now minus one tooth. As painful as that sounds I am learning that the removal of a tooth that is cracked to the root is far less painful than living with it.
Actually, in spite of a trip to the dentist is has been a very busy week. I have been busy in the shop repairing, painting, finishing and busy collecting some great items from about 3 auctions this week. CJ has been home working on some design projects that have turned up this spring. After having a couple of slow years we are grateful for all the work that finds it way to our door.
One of the things I have been wanting to blog about for some time are our trips we make up north. We often have times to make great side trips when we have left our load at Then and Now in Petoskey. One of our favorite places to visit is the wonderful little summer resort community of Chalevoix. It is about 20 minutes away from Petoskey, has a population of about 3000 people that swells to about 30,000 in the summer, and is located between Lake Michigan and Lake Charlevoix
We love to drive around town and looks at Earl Young houses. Earl Young was a builder who built a number of houses in and around town out of mostly field stones and boulders found throughout northern Michigan. The houses are very whimsical and are often called mushroom houses, gnome houses, or hobbit houses because of their shapes.

However, one of our  main reasons to visit downtown is usually to visit a wonderful store called Maison Jardin. We love the look of this store and of the building. 
They carry a number of vintage items as well as new home decor items and in the last year really great clothes.

I have long wanted to share with you our love of this store and I hope a few of the pictures will entice a few of you to put this place on your list of places to visit if you are ever in northern Michigan.

We have a list of stores, antique shops and magazines/books that are an important sources of creative inspiration for us as we do our business and this little gem of a place always inspires us.

So if you are ever in Charlevoix please check this store which is located in a wonderful 100 year old plus building.

Now time for me to focus on making one more trip up to Petoskey this coming week and then back to Allegan Antique Market next weekend.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Follow Your Heart

It is Sunday night and our weekend has not gone as planned. First,on Friday we had some truck problems that resulted in our need to cancel our trip to Ann Arbor this weekend. We were very excited about doing the Ann Arbor show so we were sorry to have to scrub our trip. We are realizing that as well as my truck has served me it is time for us to begin looking for a replacement. Second, a nagging sore tooth that I have been nursing for a couple of weeks took a turn for the worse yesterday and I ended up in the med center this morning looking for something to relieve the pain that had taken on epic proportions. A visit to the dentist is the first item on my list tomorrow. 

As I am sitting here nursing my sore jaw I am thinking about this business that CJ and I do together and feel very grateful that I get to do something that I love so much. I believe more than ever that if you do what you love and follow your heart you have the foundation for building a great business.
First, I get to do this business with my creative partner and best friend, my wife CJ. That would be reason enough to do what we do but there is more.
Second, we both love history and collecting vintage items. There is a real rush in hunting and finding all the treasures we come across and getting those items into the hands of people that are as excited about them as we are.  When you love to buy and collect vintage/antique items it is a natural to turn that love into a business.
Third, there is a hands on, restoration side to the business that is really appealing to me. The below pictured apothecary style cabinet I hauled home from an auction in many pieces.

Most of the drawers were in pieces and a number of them were missing. So I had to reassemble what drawers I had and than made up the ones that were missing to match the original. I than finished the cabinet in  one of the new distressed white paint finishes I have been experimenting with the last few months.

Fourth, there is a creative side to the business that both of us love. There is the design work that CJ gets but there are also the items we get to create. Such as the pillows pictured below that CJ made out of a find I made of some antique French ticking.

There are also the various furniture items I get to create out of the vintage parts and piece that we find. This side of the business feeds our artistic side on so many levels.
Fifth, there are all the wonderful people we meet doing our business. We have been privileged to meet so me people who have been so interesting to get to know and have been so affirming of us and our many finds and creations.
So we have decided to continue to follow our hearts and look forward to whatever adventures and roads that may take us down. This year promises to be a big year for us so we will hopefully have some exciting news about our business as the year unfolds.

So having to sit home today did result in me being able to finish a great book I have been reading about Andrew Wyeth and the Wyeth family.
I really enjoyed reading this book about an American icon and creative artistic family. So if your looking for a good summer read I can not recommend this enough.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Ann Arbor Antiques Market this Sat & Sun, May 14 & 15

We are so excited to have been accepted into the Ann Arbor Antiques Market. Our first show with them will be this Saturday and Sunday, May 14 &15. Saturday form 8-4 and Sunday from 10-4. Look for us outside under the big tent. This is their Garden Show - how fun is that!!!
I also wanted to share a few photos of the product that we off loaded in the SUN SHINE on Sunday in Petoskey for Then & Now.

I will join Dan for Sundays market in Ann Arbor, in the mean time I will be teaching a seminar at Kendall College of Art & Design , ETSY 101, on Saturday 11:00-5:00. There are sill openings in that class, it is a one day workshop for you to learn tips and tricks for selling your handmades, vintage and supplies on the popular e-commerce website of ETSY.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Country Living Fair!

Dan & I couldn't be more excited! We just found out today that we have been accepted into the Country Living Fair in Columbus Ohio, September 16-18!!!!!!
Go to click on community & freebies for more info. As we find out more about it too we will share it ALL with you.

Dan has continued to work on his new specialty finish and now he has combined it with reverse painting on glass. Oh my stars! Blue even, my new favorite color.
Also thank you to everyone who attended the first Allegan Antiques Market this past weekend. The weather was perfect and we had our best Allegan show ever. However we missed our friends Joe and Sandy of  & Diane Passi. Several of you asked about them and they will be back in May.
We have much to be thankful for and have been doing a happy dance!