Anyone in love with vintage fashion already knows all about Blue Gardenia – web destination for lovely patterns spanning the decades! And pretty much everyone who loves sewing is completely addicted to to the Sewing Spaces series over at The Blue Gardenia learns to sow her blossoms, blog-home of Denise, owner of Blue Gardenia. But! Did you know that Blue Gardenia has had a web presence since 1996?? Her WEBSITE spans decades! Here’s a story that’ll speak to anyone who’s thought of moving to (or, back to) a small town…
Hubby and I have a website that sells vintage sewing patterns and costume jewelry.
The Blue Gardenia opened in August 1999. I sold on Ebay before that, starting in 1996.
I was a journalist before, for 14 years at the Houston Chronicle.
We wanted to try small-town life. I didn’t want to work at a small-town paper and make a fraction of my big-city salary. And I loved vintage sewing patterns and costume jewelry, so The Blue Gardenia came to be.
Well, I suppose the writing experience helped with the update notices I’ve always sent to clients on our mailing list and with the blog I’ve written for a couple of years now. I forgot to pack my organizational skills when we moved from the city. Alas. However, I am quite anal that the patterns be carefully checked and stored in archival bags. That certainly harks back to my days as an editor.
Oh, gee. Do you really want me to put your readers to sleep? All right. So be it. I have multiple sclerosis (no pity, no pity, no pity, please!) and a symptom I experience is an ofttimes overwhelming exhaustion, so I sleep late. Quite. I usually get up around 11 or so. Check email. The bank balance if I am feeling brave. Breakfast. I watch “The Young and The Restless” if I get up in time. (Sweetie, I warned you that you were going to be bored!) Sort laundry for His Bertness to do later. Check email. Again. All this tires me, so I rest. Then if there are orders, I prepare those. Read. Procrastinate. Write. Check the bank balance if I’ve built up enough courage. Make grocery list. Maybe I’ll go to the grocery store with His Bertness. Maybe go to physical therapy or to a Pilates session or to meet someone for coffee. Rest. Again. Eat dinner. Maybe TV or a movie. Blog. Procrastinate. Pilates. Perhaps Facebook. Then off to bed to read. Do you need some No-Doz now?
Checking the email and finding orders!
Mmmmm . . . I’m not sure I do! The Blue Gardenia was much more successful when we updated every two weeks. We haven’t done that since 2004. Cue the violins: Health issues prevent it. And sales have been affected by the recession as well. So. Snug Bug readers, shop, shop, shop at The Blue Gardenia.
Other than hubby, yes.
If you want to move to a small town, I’d say research job opportunities there first. Make sure it has jobs! And better yet, get a job before you schedule the moving van. Prescott is beautiful, but there are no jobs. It took me several years to get a part-time job here. Research the cost of living as well. Go to a top-notch clinic like the Mayo and get a very thorough checkup to try to prevent nasty health surprises, which can be very expensive, whether you are insured or not.
A published novel, I hope. I write fiction. You can find some of my short story collection at my fiction blog, She Says.
I love The Blue Gardenia. I do. I love my customers. (Oh, sure, there’s the occasional pill, but I can count them on one hand, even after all these years in the biz.) I love patterns. I love jewelry. I do miss newspapers sometimes, especially when a big story breaks, like the oil spill in Louisiana. I wish The Blue Gardenia made more money. I wish everyone in the world would join hands and sing Kumbaya. But. Oh. Well. As some sage once said: Life sucks and then ya die.
Thanks to Denise for sharing her story and offering up pretties for our uncontrolled web-consumption. Head on over to Blue Gardenia and check out the site! As a special treat for Snug Bug readers (affectionately known as rickrackateers)Denise is offering a deal through November 18th!