Always room for one more....

Always room for one more chair, that is. This is my ode to dear friend Sandra, consummate collector of interesting furniture and fabrics, often discarded as not of interest by others.  I visited Sandra last New Years Eve in Perth Ontario.  She was in the midst of divesting herself of some her great finds as she was selling  her 'urban farmhouse' - more on that later.  I left with these 4 metal patio chairs complete with upholstered vinyl (ugh) seats probably from the forties stuffed in my Volvo wagon.   Driving back to the lake, ruminating on the chairs , I calculated that I would now have an assortment of 34 chairs in various stages of use and disrepair. Why on earth was I getting more?   From her shed into my garage collecting more dust and moss.  Oh, but I love moss!

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Have not met Lisa Ventre personally except by bag, so to speak.  Lisa got in touch at the beginning of the summer to say that her Brave Brown Bag , otherwise her 'go to bag' was still holding up after, I hate to say 15 years or so!!!!  Lisa is a hat designer based at the tip of Cape Cod in the artsy community of Provincetown.  Toyo is the material and weaving technique she uses to construct her hats in her studio boutique where customers - tourists and locals alike-  love to don her hats to add character and charm as well as give sun protection..... but who cares when they are so terrific looking.  Here's a great article describing her artistry


Lisa decided to try a few BBB for her shop and we're certainly honored to be in such fine hat company.  And apparently Lisa said once she received her order that someone came into shop, bought a bag and had one with her, again purchased many years ago and it still looked great.  So the BBB has fans in ole Provincetown.  I have put my order in with the suggestion that it has the same colour scheme as the pic below of me hamming it up in one of my lost and found hats......  something a bit Dr. Zeusssish will suit me just fine. Always lean to the side of amusing....


I recounted an amusing story to Lisa about my parent's and their sailing enthusiast caravan from Ontario bound for the Americas Cup.  Ever since I can remember starting in the 60s they travelled from Canada to watch the racing yachts battle it out amidst the cocktail banter and often seasick spectators.  One cup summer the plan was to rendezvous in Providence -  as in Rhode Island.  Some were driving, others flying into local airport, then they would all head down to Newport harbor together.  One couple was rather cells back then and it wasn't until a day later that they called from Provincetown - as in Massachusetts.  Ha they overshot the mark read the sign wrong and took the scenic route about 6 hours out of there way....  and I think they wanted to stay there!

Recently I heard that  a new trove of drawings and letters has been discovered belonging to the artist Edward Hopper and his wife Josephine. These are now being exhibited at  the Provincetown Art Museum. So worth a drive - intended or not - to Provincetown.

Thank you Lisa for carrying our BBB.

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I'm not one to attend local BIA meetings; my BBB studio is a bit off the main drag of Hespeler. However, I do belong to the association to keep abreast of developments which of late are many:  the old of many windows iconic American Standard building where they used to enamel bathtubs is about to be 'condoized' along side a new 11 storey apartment building, the Fashion Museum now hangs its hat in the former post office building, a fab artisinal olive oil shop O&V,  a great vinyl record /book shop Millpond  and recently my building sold and has new owners who will open a kraft beer brewery! Hespeler is hip!

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Deb Annis is my right hand BBB maker.  When  I moved the biz to Cambridge in 2004 Deb took charge of crafting our tote with her solid background in textile work and quality control.  I have to see the big picture -the forest for the trees and Deb has an eye for detail and patience for process.  In short a good match as my 'forest' often turns upside down and backwards.

Not unusual then that Deb spotted a BBB in need of some of textile restoration.  A couple of months ago she was visiting the Emergenncy at Grand River Hospital with a sick family member.  A wait of 6 hours  and sitting across from her was a black well used - a bit on the delapidated side  -  black BBB.   Owner not apparent.


About a month later a longtime BBB customer  Carolyn Dempsey popped into the studio with her friend Barbara Cove.  Barbara is an ER nurse at Grand River Hospital. You can put 2 and 2 together.    The BBB in the ER belonged to Barbara.  She says its a great tote for her carry the tools of her trade such as the stethscope etc when she is on high alert.  It made me think of the amazing job ER nurses and nurses in general do.  How do they stay calm and cool surrounded by our various states of our emergency?  




Barbara was very happy with the BBB spa results and it was a pleasure to  administer some much needed TLC to her BBB;  restoring her tote for more appearances in the ER but looking bit more lively!  Our good deed for Earth Day.    

If you would like to do some Spring cleaning and send your BBB to us  until May 15 all restorations are on the house!







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The Sea Salt Soap Voyage of Charlotte & Castel

Charlotte and Castel Sea Salt Soap:  beautifully made, beautifully packaged  and an exquisite  experience to use.  Who are Charlotte and Castel?  Well not the names of the founders, 'charlotte' refers to a delicate dessert and castel? Is that a star .. The 'voyage' of the creators behind C&C is as intriquing as their collection of organic sea inspired products. 

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