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Thursday, November 8, 2007

Whatever Happened to the Craft Shows?

What do...
100 Women with their Hubbie's checkbooks and Christmas lists in-hand,
Home made goodies and cheap coffee,
A Christian school gymnasium,
A bunch of Christian School Childrens' mothers with lot of time on their hands,
and many, many homeshow enthusiasts have in common?
They all turned up at a small private school tonight for "Ladies Night Out," a fundrasier for the school. I'm sitting here with my sister "helping" her peddle her trade amongst the local moms and grandmas. As Bradi said, it seems to be the longest two hours ever...not that meeting people and selling Uppercase Living isn't fun, but it would be a lot better if some of the other booths were a little more interesting.
I was hoping to pick up something fun and hand-made for our house but everything here is either handmade and ugly, or manufactured in a factory or perhaps by people in China that don't understand "Pottery Barn" or "Shabby Chic."
Whatever happened to the good ol' craft shows that grandma used to take us to when we were little? The ones that smelled strongly of cinnamon and nutmeg, dried flowers and quilts saved away in an attic. Does anyone else remember going to those? They too were usually held in a school gymnasium or church basement, except that these women had rough hands from hand weaving baskets and wore sweaters that they, in turn, had picked up from a similar crafting excursion.
Usually I trailed along behind my grandma wondering what on earth she saw in all this stuff and how we always seemed to leave with so much junk when I hadn't seen anything that I thought was worth buying. My standards at that age were based primarily on an item's ability to entertain me for as long as possible and this usually meant that it was made of high density plastic and probably plugged into the wall. However, nowadays I wonder where all those handmade items went, and should I really have to go to Shipshewana or Goshen to find them? And then, honestly, unless I buy it out of the back of a buggy from a rather plain looking woman and her thirteen children, can I really be sure that it is authentic Americana merchandise? It still could have been shipped here brand new from Japan having been dropped a few times along the way giving the item it'd distressed appearance!
Ok, maybe that is a bit overboard, but as I get older I'm really starting to appreciate the authentic. In fact, though I know it is almost humanly impossible (given my dutch backround) to NOT buy the knockoffs for the benefit of a less-expensive item, I'm determined to purchase all my home decorating, at least the rustic or antique-y items from a truly rustic or antique-y place.
So now, step two is to set about finding such places as I've mentioned in this blog. I'm sure they still exist, you just need to know where to look. Maybe I should ask my grandma...


Tim and Nancy said...

That's why God made antique stores :-)