Sunday, October 31, 2010

Holiday Open House and Election Week

What does one have to do with the other, you're asking yourself.  If you want to run a commercial during the election week----GOOD LUCK!  However, we were lucky that we actually didn't want to start until Wednesday of next week---thank goodness.  So, in case you miss the 15 second ad (or you aren't a Facebook friend and you saw a preview), here it is:


Thanks Ron, for making sure it was done just right!  You knew what we were after and managed to get it all into just a few seconds.

Time:  11:00 am until 4:00 pm 

Where:  505 West 2nd Street, Joplin, Missouri

Sunday, October 24, 2010

The MSSU Alumni Center Project: The Library

Missouri Southern State University's alumni center is busy!  At least that's the word from their Director, Lee.  They are already holding events in the beautiful building, and the plans for it's use seem endless. 

When we were asked to help furnish and decorate the interior, we knew we needed to show all  the wonderful potential this building, sometimes referred to as Mission Hills, could offer.  Knowing most of the rooms would need to serve double and triple duty on the party circuit, we concentrated on the Library as the more "decorated" room.  We needed something that would serve as a wow factor when presenting our ideas to the Alumni Board.  Thank goodness we had a computer program to draw most of our ideas, but still, we needed some artistic talent to get the idea across.  That's when we contacted our friend Laureen about the Library rendering.  We took a picture of each wall, measurements included, and sent them to her along with our plan.  Here's one of the before shots:

Here's our plan in storyboard style:

Included in the furniture pieces are a chair and sofa donated by the late Mrs.Mary Helen Harutun, who fell in love with the building.  We wanted to show the fabrics, furniture styles, and other furnishings and knew Laureen would be able to recreate them in her drawing for even more impact.  

Pretty cool, huh?  The entire drawing was done with a program called "Minutes Matter Studio".  Actually, it's because we have the program that we know Laureen.  It's a long story, but believe me when I say everyone involved with the drawing program is considered a friend!

Now, here's a picture of the finished room.  I may have to dig through more pictures to see if I have one from the same view.  You might notice a couple of fabric changes, but we really stayed very close to the original plan.  The gold chair is in the corner, just behind the photographer.

If you live in the area, please stop in and take a tour through the Ralph L.Gray Alumni Center.  We've got more pictures to share of the other rooms if you can't make it.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Save the date: November 6, Holiday Open House

Holiday Tea

I know it sounds too early to say it out loud, but it is soon time for all retail stores to get their Holiday best on display, and host their Holiday Open House.  It's traditionally on the first weekend in November, so we are sticking with that.  Join us from 11:00 am until 4:00 pm for some Holiday Tea and cookies.  We are featuring Tea Forte' this year as our free giveaway, so you'll want to be sure and register.

Also on hand for the celebration will be Ali Stinespring, of Babalu' Art, with a trunk show of her fused glass.  She'll have jewelry, platters, and some surprises for us, all on display upstairs where the large windows should really help show off her work.

Downstairs will be plenty of sparkly red and green ornaments, shiny red bell wreaths,  and several styles of foil style santas.  We fell for the santas at the Atlanta market, and bought the ornament sizes as well as these full size decorations:
It's not too early to mark your calendar for November 6th.  If you're a customer, you'll be getting a postcard reminder.  Watch our local TV channels for some other reminders to shop at MLI

Sunday, October 10, 2010

A challenging bay window gets an updated look

Yes, all bay windows are different, and almost always a challenge when it comes to the hardware involved.  Our latest candidate had the "typical" dropped ceiling we've seen in many homes in our area, but this one had a big difference:  no space between the window and ceiling.  See what I'm talking about:

The previous treatment used the small white oval rod for a valance (not in this picture) and the sheers, and a traverse rod for the panels.  These rods were visible from outside as well as inside when the sheers and panels  were pulled open.  The client still wanted panels, but didn't want to see the hardware---I agreed!  See the glaring picture below for the before:

Privacy was important, as well as finding a new fabric for the panels.  We decided to say bye-bye to sheers and give the area a newer look with bamboo shades.  She was quickly on board for this look, and after seeing the lining options, she new she could have privacy and added insulation for the windows.  Installation for the shades was easily an inside mount, as the windows were fairly deep set.  Here's the woven wood fabric:

Now to find a fabric for the panels and decide on their fullness.  The client did not want to lose the beautiful, full view she had through the center window, and realized the sheers had been covering the side windows  most of the time.  The old panels were very full when pulled open because they traversed over the entire window.  By using shades for privacy, we didn't need to worry about using so much fabric, but just to get the right amount of fullness for each single panel.  It was decided to use a single width for the middle panels, and one-and-a-half widths for the ends.  By using the napped sateen for lining, we knew they would have nice, rounded pleats and plenty of fullness. 

Here's some of the fabric swatches we sent to K. so she could see each in her home, with her lighting:

(embroidered leaves)

We also looked at fabrics with a dark background, but really liked the lighter, fresh look some of these offered.   The embroidered fabric was too pale, the middle fabric was too old fashioned, but the first fabric, with the tan and white leaves on the aqua background, was just right.

All that was left was ordering our  "hardware", which is referred to as a "pin strip".  If you make window treatments, you probably are familiar with Rowley Company.  If you're not in the biz, just trust me when I tell you they have thought of everything.  I think K. was happy to report to her husband that the hardware would cost less than twenty bucks!  Here's the little piece that made this bay window a success:

Finally, the finished window:

If you think you have a challenging window--let us decide.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Babalu' Art: Imaginative Fused Glass by Ali Stinespring

Just a couple of days ago, Pam made a call to Ali to find out if she had more jewelry and nightlights, as we were down to our last two of each item.  Lucky for us, Ali was in town with her van and we were able to purchase some great new fused glass for the shop that day!  

We have a "connection" with Ali, not just because her mother is a friend and great customer, but also it was her grandfather who ran a grocery store from our building some years ago.

Mr. Morgan has been in our shop several times during the past 3 years, and always has the biggest smile as he walks down memory lane and shares a few stories with us.  He enjoys seeing the life brought back into the old building, although it does look a lot different.  Ali's mother, Carol, and her sisters, spent many hours helping out when their father was in business. 

But back to Babalu' Art---we currently have a couple of fused glass platters and a great selection of Ali's fused glass pendants.  She has a great new way to display each piece, so you can't miss them when you're looking around the shop!   Where else can you go to treat yourself (or someone special) to a one-of-a-kind piece of jewelry other other art?  She signs each piece and does many commissioned pieces.  We put in a couple of requests and can't wait to see them.

Now for the really exciting news:  Babalu' Art will be holding a trunk show during our Christmas Open House!

Stay tuned for the exact date and time, it's just around the corner. 


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