It all started with an old door. It's funny how something becomes iconic. A certain song reminds you of a certain day and a certain person and something that happened between you. A specific color brings to mind the exact shade of peach velvet you had on an armchair and the room it was in and how you felt during that period of your life, a yellow hyacinth instantly evokes the first day of midwestern spring in your childhood. Fornasetti and John Derian imagery reminds me of my favorite Uncle Stuart who was a very talented and an eccentric artist. And Raggedy Anne dolls cause me to remember that I once believed that dolls were alive.
And sometimes one thing is the beginning of something. I have had many a gargantuan crafting extravaganzas in the past but this was going to be my first-ever "Pop-up Shop" and Craft Party and I was trying to imagine how it would all work, when suddenly I remembered a 12 foot tall wood panel that was leaning against the back of the garage. It had once been a door, then a shelf and later a temporary table top. Now it was disintegrating at the edges from years of weather and yet somehow I knew this door was going to be my centerpiece, the lynchpin of my event and the beginning of everything that was going to happen. I knew I had to paint a giant peacock feather on the door.
Besides the cast-off door, it was my extraordinarily good fortune to also have a sister-in-law (Jennifer Shestack) who is a super-retail-mogul type person, and who flew out from Philadelphia -- just to help me out! Together, Jennifer and her bestie, Meredith Feldman, made it all happen. Whereas I was like the laid back California type: “Let’s put out a few plates on the side and let people wander around and maybe bump into them”. They were like: “No one gets past us to the crafting area without spending time in the Pop-Up Shop!” It was an East Coast vs West Coast kind of thing, kind of like in a Tupac rap.
It turned out to be one of those remember-forever kind of days, everyone made the most creative and gorgeous Art Journal covers (check them out in the video below!) and they also bought lots and lots of decoupage plates and paperweights and I was elated (and still am!).
And now I can’t wait for the next one, the Portiaelizabeth Holiday Pop-Up Shop and Craft Party – this time we’ll be making Dreidels and Christmas ornaments! If you couldn’t get to the last one, you gotta get your craft on at the next one!
Sometimes, like the old door, inspiration arrives in a flash and you know exactly what to do, as if your hand is being guided by a higher force, but other times ideas need to time to brew and slowly emerge. That’s why, even though it’s only August, I’m already starting to design my Chanukah and Christmas plates.