A bit about buying local and handmade…

Here it is. My latest acquisition. I love it.


I always have a problem keeping track of what I need to get at the store. It seems that even though I am psycho about my grocery list (perhaps a totally different blog post), I seem to forget some items I need because I never write them down when I see I need them.

I also want a place to jot down quick notes, like what time it was when I put something in the oven or when the baby fell asleep for her nap.

So it seemed like I needed a big dry erase board for my kitchen, but I didn’t want one of those that looked like it belongs in a dorm somewhere. I’m unfortunately way past my college days. And I’ve seen some ceramic ones, but they aren’t as pretty as I’d like them to be and not nearly as large. I wanted something pretty and shiny and unlike anything else I’d ever seen. And then it came to me: GLASS!!!

My mind immediately went to my pal Sandra at Artistic Impressions by Sandra A. Wills. She is a local glass artist from my tiny town that I’ve gotten to know over the years. We actually met at a childbirth class years ago when I was pregnant with my son. I ran into her again at our town’s farmer’s market where she had a booth with her beautiful art and I’ve been a fan ever since. Can I just say I am in love with her pendants? And if you look closely, my daughter’s room rocks one of her night lights (over by the lamb rug). Fused glass night lights!  Amazing, huh?

So I talked to her to see if she had anything like what I was thinking. She wasn’t in the dry-erase board business, but she was excited to tackle that project. She sent me some pics of different types of glass, we talked about where I wanted it to go and how I wanted to hang it, etc. The result is a gorgeous big message board that is custom fit to my space in colors that I love (they just happen to be University of Florida colors – Go Gators!)

And that is what I love about local and handmade. You get to know the people behind the pieces. It’s not just buying a thing – it’s buying a story and strengthening roots in your little slice of the world. You know the people, the stories behind the products, and you always end up with something unique, and in this case, tailor-made for you. Each item has depth and charm that you just can’t get anywhere else.

Here’s another look of my message center from further away:


It’s made life much easier, and in a much cuter way. Thanks Sandra!


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