Last month Mom, my aunt, and I all headed down to The Philadelphia gift show to represent Lancaster County Soapworks. I have gone to The Herb Fest in York, Pa and The Landis Valley Garden Show but this was a totally different experience.
Since they started their herb shop back in the day, Mom and Aunt Maryanne have always gone to shows together, travelled together, and had a great time all around. I have never been able to go with because of school, work, or I was too young. After this trip I felt as though I was one of the musketeers. I began to understand their inside jokes and their stories.
The Philly show was massive. The presentations, displays, and products did not seem to have an end. But despite all the glitz and the aggressive sales people we stood out and had an amazing time.
Setting up and getting accustomed to everything was relatively simple. Once we set up our tables we were able to head back to the hotel and unwind. It was luckily a mild and sunny day so we were happy to run around.
The first day of the show we met our neighbors. We first met Vera of Vera and Wolf. Vera and Wolf is a Connecticut-based jewelry business. While all the jewelry is designed in Connecticut, they have their collections created in Bali. By doing so they are able to sustainably craft unique and beautiful jewelry while hiring local women offering them a fair wage. Since the owners, Vera and Wolf, visit Bali three times each year they are able to insure their work to be made with care and done so responsibly.
|Just a glimpse at some of their stunning work.|
|A piece I was given by my mother for my birthday.|
Across from us was Elena’s. Ivan is the owner of Elena’s (Elena is his daughter in case you were wondering), which offers stunning glass pieces like fairy tears and witch catchers. Ivan would keep us howling all day every day. He was a fascinating character and I was truly happy to have the chance to meet him.
Waste Not was down the way a bit. It’s a business outside of Syracuse New York that “stalks” construction sites and demolished buildings to harvest reusable materials to create beautiful works of art. My favorite part about their business is that their products are functional and affordable pieces of art. Originally Mandy and Greg started out doing custom pieces for friends but as the business grew they became flooded with requests for products. Now they are able to start a wholesale line!
|The cutest couple/business partners.|
|Some of their unique pieces!|
Meeting our neighbors, current clients, and some new ones was fun and helped me understand what I need to do to help out with the family businesses. It gave me a new perspective of what my mom and aunt do. While I am always inspired and encouraged by what they accomplish everyday, I had a new found respect for them as well. They believe in what they do. They do it to help others be it their family or their customers. I feel so lucky to be a part of something great.
Also, all the Wegman’s I can eat!