The other day, I was talking to my BFF, Mary L. and we were reminiscing about our friendship and how we started out in the "business"! Mary and I put on our very first Tapestries of Nature shows back in 1988! Mary was a dried floral designer, as was I, and since my Husband had just built me my very own little cottage to do my design work in, we decided to invite everyone we knew to our first annual show. Right from the get go it was very successful! (Of course that was back in the day!) So, twice a year, spring and late fall, we had a show. It wasn't long before we out grew my little cottage and we found a old village hall that was kind enough to let us rent the hall twice a year. Despite the traffic jams we caused in this little village, often times having to call for a traffic cop to help with the directing of traffic and fixing parking jams, we were allowed to use the hall for about 12 more years! One of the things that Mary and I had in common was that we bought very few flowers. Instead we spent all year gathering weeds from the wild and growing our own flowers to dry. Nature, branches, twigs, nests, wild weavings and woodland gatherings were the major components in our work We often went gathering together and our customers would marvel at how alike our design work was. The great thing about our little business was that, while we often made similar things, we were totally comfortable with each other and never felt threatened! in fact, we loved each other's work, and rejoiced when any of it sold! We fed off of each other's designs! So the name that we chose, Tapestries of Nature, was right on! We either made things from nature, or had a nature theme to our things. And while a lot has happened to both of us in the ensuing years, we still find joy in each others work! We both have always made things and will continue until we are not able. I feel truly blessed to have such a friend! The next three pics are an example of some of our work from all those years ago.
I have showed this pillow before, notice the bird theme,that I made when I was in England last JUNE! Through the years, I have tried many forms of crafts and have all of the equipment needed to prove it! LOL! A couple of years ago, I read an article about a home business that employed older forms of printing methods to make beautiful and original stationary. It piqued my interest, especially the look of the screen printing! For the last several years, I had searched in vain for classes that taught screen printing. All of the classes in my area offered everything but! After much searching, I decided to invest in my own equipment and I am really loving being able to design my own images, many of which compliment my business name.
These are pillows that I have made using screen print, with the addition of old lace, which is something that I usually add to my pillows.
I really like my birdcage design. It was so exciting to make and because of the fancy bird cage, I decided to let this pillow be a little simpler, for now anyway!
Well that's my little trip down memory lane for now. And I think this is post 149!!!! So after my next post, it will be give away time!
What a beautiful trip down memory lane with you!
Love the writing and the photos!
Most especially, I love hearing about your BFF...such a gift!
Thank you for sharing,
Such a nice story. Nice pillows too. Again, those little nests are so sweet. Will they be available in your Etsy shop?
Time really does go faster after a certain age..ahem. :o)
But I loved hearing you reminisce and seeing the beautiful creations of your friendship.
You are both gifted and blessed dear Judy...
What a lovely post. Hearing how your business evolved and about your long friendship was really heartwarming.
I loved your trip down memory lane, Judy! I started a small online business in 2004 (& will re-open this year) with the idea of sharing nature via art and pressed botanicals. Do you remember the Victoria magazine book "The Business of Bliss" that featured the florist 'Wild Child'? I fell in love instantly. Your shop, your shop's name and everything you create inspire and delight. I am so happy to have discovered your blog. We make different things, but OH, I love everything you create!!!
Have a lovely day,
How fortunate you are to have such a great BFF. Of course you must be a great BFF in return, for your friendship to have enjoyed such longevity.
"The best way to have a friend is to be one."
Thank you for sharing your story. Everyone who reads it will pause and think of their own BFF's and for that moment..be grateful.
Was the little village perhaps Wayne? I remember going to several shows out there and once bought the neatest wreath that was made from wild flowers (weeds) from Door County. That was my absolute favorite wreath - alas, it faded and dissolved after about 10 years!!! The workmanship was excellent.
Judy I think this post proves what I already knew about you. You are the kind of person who enjoys seeing others reach their best self. You and your dear friend are very blessed indeed. And your work together is simply amazing. You have always been an artist and will continue to be your whole life. I am totally in love with your pillows and that design of the cage has got to be my favorite.
I could look at your creations all day!
the trouble with trips down memory lane is they get longer as we get older! or do we reach a certain age when they get shorter because we can't remember what we've done!!!!!!
You are very talented!! I love your pillows! (You are inspiring me to get back to sewing, which was my first love!)
TO CHRISTINA, YES THAT WAS IN WAYNE, IL. SUCH A PERFECT SETTING! WE WERE HEARTBROKEN WHEN THE NEW CARETAKER WOULD NOT RENT THE BUILDING OUT ANYMORE. WE TRIED DIFFERENT LOCATIONS, BUT THEY COULDN'T BE PERMANENT FOR USE, SO WE HAD NO CHOICE BUT TO DISCONTINUE THE SHOWS.
I COULDN'T ACCESS YOUR SITE, SO THAT'S THE REASON THAT I AM ANSWERING YOU HERE.
Those were the good old days, weren't they!?! Those shows were stunning and I loved going.
Hey, I didn't know you were looking for screen printing classes-I used to have a small business screen printing out of my garage in the early 80s, I could of helped you. Looks like you are doing great though, love the pillows.
Good friends are sure a treasure.
Your annual sale sounds like a BLAST! Thanks for the history of your shop name ~ and sharing your memories with us!
Sadly I've missed your blog for a few days now. I've been so under the weather, but doing much better and doing a little catching up. How nice it is to see photos with flowers. I am so ready for spring and warmer weather.
It is so much fun going down memory lane at times. Though I have a few hairdos down that lane that are ones I wish to never recall!!
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