Sunday, February 22, 2009

More Philadelphia Markets

Did you notice the word market is plural? Yes, there was not only the Buyers Market
in the wonderful Pennsylvania Convention Center, but there was a farmers market at the Reading Terminal Market. And all of this was just a short walk from our hotel! So short, in fact, that we ate several meals inside the farmers market. The website for the Reading Terminal Market describes it as being nearly as popular as the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall. We didn't know that when we left on our trip, but we know it now! OK, now back to the purpose of the trip, to find new, unusual vendors for the shop. That wasn't difficult to do. You'll see some of them in the pictures below, along with some vendors we didn't buy from---and not because we didn't like them! We stuck to our plan, and chose vendors that would be affordable for our customers, fit in the store, and have a unique look. The hard part was limiting our choices.

Well, it was Valentines Day, and the goodies looked exceptionally good! Our favorite sweet stop was Termini Brothers Bakery. OK, back to business . . . .

One of the new vendors we chose makes fused glass wall pockets. Very bright and fresh looking. They can be used for holding everything from florals to toothbrushes! They should be arriving first. Very cute!

Don't be disappointed, but we didn't buy from the two glass vendors show above. We loved them, and their displays were just beautiful, and thought you might think so, too. If you think it's something you might like to see in person, please let us know. We have some information on several of the glass artists.

Everyone likes new jewelry. If you can't afford the big bling of a glass vase, try some cut glass earrings. Yes, this is another new vendor we picked up for the shop. Her earrings won't be in the store until closer to summer. We overheard shop owners from Vermont talking about her line of earrings, and became intrigued. After making the walk through the huge section of jewelry vendors, we know this one was different!

Back again! No we didn't eat a whole cake, but between us we had a good variety of their goodies.

We visited the Motawi Tile display. You may have seen their tiles in our store, already. It was great to visit with them and talk about the new tiles they are featuring this Spring. Although we didn't buy more, we did invest in some beautiful wooden clocks which feature a Motawi Tile in the body of the clock. No pictures to show you at this time, but we'll keep you posted as to their arrival. We even saw the clocks on sale at the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

You might not be able to tell that these little pieces of art are light switch plates. They are hanging on a screen door, which seems to be a perfect way to display so many of these small items. We have several varieties of these on their way---just another small thing you can add to your home that makes more of an impression than you might think. This particular vendor also makes paperweights, and yes, we bought some of those, too.

Stay tuned, as soon as things begin to arrive in the shop, we'll post more detailed information about each one. There's still more to show you, but seeing it in person would be so much better.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Can you guess where we've been???

The picture above should be enough of a hint. It surely is recognized by everyone that has taken 3rd grade social studies. The Liberty Bell is located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, but you knew that.

If you read a few weeks ago we were excited to be attending the Buyers Market, which is held in the Pennsylvania Convention Center. I hope you can visit Philadelphia if you haven't already. We have a few pics to show off before we post about our finds for the store.

Do you recognize this building? It's Independence Hall.

Here's an inside view. This is the room that the Declaration of Independence was adopted. Very basic in decor and stately in appearance. We really enjoyed being in the same room that George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and all the others spent so much of their time. Now, I really need to watch the HBO series "John Adams" again. I know they recreated this room down to the last chair.

You might not be as familiar with Philadelphia's City Hall. It is breathtaking, really. You can see it from all over the city.

This view of City Hall is from the courtyard. This is just part of what you see after you walk through the building and into the courtyard.

One more view of the giant building as we walked from the Philadelphia Museum of Art. I won't go into anymore detail of the buildings, but if you are interested, the links take you to the appropriate websites. But if you want to hear more, stop in and ask us! We have a few funny stories to tell you, too!

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Vendor Highlight #2: Lafayette

We do order many hard window treatments from Lafayette, but one of our favorites would be their woven wood shades. Their brand of woven woods is called Manh Truc. They can be used in any room in your home. A more popular look is pairing the woven wood shades with drapery panels. There is also a picture on the left side of the blog of a before and after featuring woven wood shades.
A bank of french doors definitely needed sun control. We chose a lining with sunblocking properties which enabled the homeowners to see their TV, not to mention blocking the hot sun that comes through in the summer! Note the color choice---not all woven woods are brown.

Here's another color available in the Manh Truc collection. This one has red stained wood mixed with strips of bamboo. They worked great next too the brick fireplace by adding a mix of ruggedness and color at the same time. The dressier red/bamboo mix blended in nicely with the new wood floors without being too "brown". Sometimes too much stained wood can just get boring, and this could have been one of those cases.

One other provider of woven woods is a company called Woven Woods Plus.
Although we don't order from them as often, they also have a large selection of shades available. Above is an example of an unlined roman over a kitchen sink. They still allow you to see through them when down and do not provide total privacy.

Lafayette does provide continuing education for their products which is a another important part of being a good vendor. One of the most knowledgeable reps for hard window treatments is Jennifer K. She is quick to respond to our questions and knows about all of Lafayette's products.

Come by and see the variety of woven wood shades, you'll be surprised by all the choices.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Vendor Highlight #1: RM CoCo

We have a lot of fabric companies and hardware companies at Madison Lane. One of our most used vendors is RM CoCo. The picture above is from their website, featuring their fabrics, trims and hardware. We have used their hardware many times, and have found they have one of the best selecitons of medallions/rosettes.

The pictures above feature medallions from "The Finial Company", which is one of the hardware companies carried by RM CoCo. The Finial Company offers a variety of drapery hardware, including decorative traverse rods, wood and iron rods/finials, and decorative resin finials.

Another one of our favorite things about RM CoCo is our rep, Bruce. He's quick to answer questions and very good about keeping us up-to-date on all the newest happenings in the company. They are located in Cape Girardeau, Missouri, so shipping time is fast! We do use their custom workroom for many of our drapery panels and roman shades. They do a fantastic job and give great customer service.

Browse their website for more information about the company, and be sure to look through our fabric, trim and hardware books next time you need something special.


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