Thursday, July 29, 2010

The Northwest Washington Fair is almost here!

I'm excited! I'm counting down the days to the opening of the Northwest Washington Fair here in the small but beautiful town of Lynden. The Fair gives me the opportunity to show my work to a large and varied audience and it's something I look forward to all year. It enables me to meet new clients and reconnect with clients I've done work for in the past.

I've been prepping for a while already. My 10' x 10' booth will be jam packed with offerings. On the back wall of the booth I'm featuring a cornice with side panels; an aqua chenille is used on the lower portion of the drape panel with a contemporary paisley in cream, tan and aqua for the upper; they're joined diagonally and accented with a coordinating fabric tape. Topping the panels is a shaped cornice in aqua with beaded trim. A Moreland valance with tassels and trim as well as a tent pleated valance round out the drapery offerings for this year.

For the first time, I am highlighting Panel Accents sliding panels by Graber, a modern and functional way to cover patio doors, wide windows, and closet openings . As well, they can be used as room dividers and come in a wide variety of fabrics including screens and woven woods.

 I'll exhibit many other shades, including the always popular Silhouette window shadings by Hunter Douglas, energy-saving cell shades, wood blinds  and  UV-blocking screen shades. Sample books will find a place too, next to beautiful fabrics. Business cards and brochures are printed, informational literature is ready, and I've found plush carpet, classic furniture and decorative elements to dress up the booth.

So am I ready for 14 hour days of standing on concrete? To smell fair food for six days in a row? To listen to the spiel of the Magic Mop guy time after time? To enjoy the camaraderie of fellow exhibitors? To welcome new clients and chat with the old? To have the opportunity to share my love of designing window fashions? To educate? And in my own small way, make people's homes a better place to be?

You betcha!

Friday, July 02, 2010

Spa Delights!

I spent a wonderful day a few weeks ago being deliciously pampered at the Chrysalis Inn & Spa in Bellingham, WA.

Earlier in the year, I was blessed to be able to provide the Spa with beautiful mossy green chenille floor to ceiling drapes for one of their treatment rooms. The purpose of the drape was to ensure a tranquil experience for the Spa's many clients, thus the drape was lined and interlined for the greatest sound absorption. Suspended from a contemporary stainless steel rod and running the length of the room, the drapes provided a soft and luxurious backdrop.

The glimpses I had of the Spa enchanted! I knew I had to return to sample its delights.

One cool spring morning, my daughters and daughter-in-law accompanied me for some decadent pampering. It began with slipping into luxurious robes in a well-appointed and softly fragranced change room. We decided to forgo the sauna, and were guided to comfortable chairs in the Spa's relaxation room. The attentive spa attendant provided us with beverages, and over the next hours we quietly chatted and gazed at the contemplative gardens while receiving spa pedicures. When the pedicures were complete, we weren't ready to leave! As a Spa lunch was available, we opted to kick back for a while longer and were treated to beautifully presented and delicious meals. As we reluctantly walked through the doors of the Inn to our vehicles, we agreed it had been a wonderful experience and vowed to return.

My thanks to Alan Richard, whose FaceBook status today was: the major expense of today's woman: Nail Salons!!! It brought back memories of a wonderful day spent at the Chrysalis Spa. Hmm, I think I'll book another appointment...

Thursday, July 01, 2010


I am not a morning person. Let me be very clear about that. Yet, for the past three years, I have been getting up at the unspeakably early hour of 6 a.m. and heading to Bellingham.

Why? Connections.

Not just because of the connections I have made, or will make, but because of Connections. That's the name of the business networking group of which I am a member. I pulled some info from the website to explain a little about Connections...

A Step Beyond Networking
Would you like to expand your business presence in the community? Would you like to be part of a group of service providers with confidence in the quality of their products or services? Connections operates on the premise that if there is trust, business will follow.
Members are committed to providing clients with dependable, local, quality service. We promote each other's success by providing a weekly forum for sharing ideas, referrals, street talk and giving individual presentations. In addition, we offer joint marketing and social activities throughout the year to build the relationships upon which trust is founded.

We're a  widely diverse group, ranging in age from early twenties to mid-seventies, with businesses across the alphabetical spectrum, from ACN to Hamsterpuncture to Zervas Group Architecture. We're united by the desire to help each other succeed.

I've learned so much from fellow members; been mentored, and been a mentor; shared in triumphs and tragedies; laughed a lot! And oh yes, along the way, I've passed on leads and received many, as we helped each others' businesses to thrive and grow. I truly have been blessed by the connections I've made at Connections.

And every Thursday morning at 6 a.m., when I blearily rub my eyes and roll out of bed, I really don't mind at all.