Just finished our fabulous gift show at Lavender Ridge Farm this past weekend. (see photos under the tab Art on the Ridge) It was blustery with a bitter wind Saturday and cold Sunday, but the rain stayed away and I was so happy with the number of visitors who came out for a look-see. My friend Joanne Labadie (Lavender Ridge) and I organised the event, our first, and it went off rather well I must say. It seems that we were in sync on all aspects of the show planning and set up and complimented each other every step of the way. Joanne was raised in the neighbouring town of Quyon and so she seems to know everybody in the Pontiac! I have a few graphic design skills and a little media planning/ placement experience which come in handy when advertising came into play. We are a good team for sure! (how lucky for me that I met Joanne at the chelsea market two summers ago!)
The event didn’t go live without a few unforeseen developments – only natural..; The caterer we had recruited had to step down a week before the event, due to an unfortunate death in the family. But to my pleasant surprise, would you believe, on the very day that the caterer and I spoke, I received an email from an interested vegan chef inquiring if we needed food vendors. She saw one of our postcards at a local bakery. How serendipitous! ; We had also accepted applications for 20 exhibitors and 2 of them didn’t show on the Saturday. I think the forecast of rain must have had them a little nervous; We had two large tents blow over and break overnight Saturday. Fortunately Doug (husband to Joanne and co-owner of Lavender Ridge) is ingenious and with duct tape, bamboo rods and some engineering expertise, we were back up and running by 9am – no trouble bubble; The temps were so cold on Sunday that our visitors did not get a chance to sit and relax on the patio while sipping soup or spooning into a hot chilli, instead, they had to try to keep warm by shuffling from tent to tent. Such troopers!
Despite these few gnawing suprises, Joanne and I had a blast. Our primary goal was to host the very first show of this kind in the Pontiac, showcasing superior crafts, foods and artwork. We imagined that by providing a picturesque venue and inviting visitors through social networks and local print media, that this combination would provide healthy sales for all vendors. If they don’t sell, then we are out of business! Our not so hidden agenda was to have the chance to hang with like-minded people and to shop!! I was so glad to receive such positive feedback from some of the artisans saying how their sales far surpassed their expectations, some even said sales were higher than any outdoor event they had attended all summer. I was so impressed and so thrilled, needless to say. That being said, there is always room for improvement, and with their support, Joanne’s energy, my dancing (oh yes I was dancing on Saturday night) we intend to take this show to new levels with every passing season.
I celebrated my 48th birthday on Saturday. It will be a most memorable one. Not because I approach the big, bad 50 year mark, but I was so fortunate to have one of my dearest and oldest friends, Lakshmi to celebrate with, along with newer and just as dear to me, friends, Fiona, Joanne, Doug, Morgan, Pat, Hassan. My sweetheart Scott is away on business at the moment so was unable to join in on the fun.. We shared a dinner of humous with chips, lasagna and multiple glasses of wine right from the oak barrel at Lavender Ridge.. did I mention that Joanne and Doug have several vineyards and operate a winery at the farm? yup.. oh, and is the red wine ever good. I can’t wait for them to get their license to sell. I will be jostling shoulders with many eager buyers when it is bottled and shelved. They have a large waiting list already..
Tomorrow I will continue producing more bags, sweater blankets and the like for what time remains before my next show opens on November 15. I will keep you posted on how things are developing for that. Now that Art on the Ridge is behind me, I will try to work at a more relaxed pace. I think I can, I think I can….
Happy sewing lovely friends!