It made me happy to see a photo of President Obama and his daughters shopping on Saturday at an independent bookstore in Virginia. That's the kind of support that Small Business Saturday needs! Amazon is convenient for buying books but sometimes you don't know what you want and just want to browse. I miss real bookstores for that.

Yesterday's show turned out well—a very good turnout for a first-time event. And I hear they have plans to make it even larger next year, expanding out from the ballroom to other parts of the Masonic Temple building. It's a big building, too! If you're interested in 1920s architecture check out the video about it's history.

I'm hoping that the customer who purchased a mini wallet from me at the show reads this blog. Someone found your package lying on the ground and returned it to me. He (and I) had no way of contacting you because you paid with cash. So, if you were missing a package when you got home last night, please contact me. I'll be happy to pop it into the mail for you. And I will hold it for a while just in case.

Don't forget the Cyber Monday sale on my website today. Enter discount code MONDAY when you check out for 25% off your purchase total!


show some love to small business this holiday season

I love Thanksgiving for the food and for getting together with friends. For shopping? Not so much. In fact, I don't think I've ever gone shopping on Black Friday. Ever. I hate crowds, to the point where I get a bit claustrophobic, and there's no bargain (in my opinion) that's worth standing in line for an hour or more. I usually plan a nice day at home and try not to go out at all.

However, I will go out in support of Small Business Saturday tomorrow. So what is this all about? Small Business Saturday was started three years ago by American Express to make consumers aware of how important it is to shop at and support small businesses in your local community.

As a consumer you play a key role in helping small businesses to survive. When you shop or dine at a small business or local restaurant you're helping to keep 68% of each dollar you spend in your own community. Small businesses provide jobs, pay local taxes, and help your community to thrive. They also offer unique merchandise that you can't find at the big-box stores and personal service (also hard to find at large chains, especially on Black Friday). Visit www.shopsmall.com to learn about ways you can participate.

Another way to support small business is to shop their websites on Cyber Monday. The big stores will have deals, of course, but so will most of the small ones. Start with mine. If you visit Primrose Design on Monday, November 25th, use discount code MONDAY and get 25% off your order total.

And, if you're out and about this Sunday, don't forget the Buy Local Holiday Marketplace at the Scranton Cultural Center at the Masonic Temple on Washington Avenue from 11-4. At last count there were 50 vendors and there will be free gift wrapping for your purchases courtesy of ScrantonMade.

Buy Local Holiday Marketplace poster


picking myself up again

So, after my not-so-good experience with my last show and several days of soul-searching, I've dusted myself off and I'm ready to plunge back in. My next show is the Abington Community Library Holiday Marketplace in Clarks Summit next Saturday, November 10th, from 10 am to 4 pm. This is my third year and I've been "promoted" to the front room so you'll find me almost as soon as you walk in the door.

I spent some time yesterday planning my table setup and I'm going to make use of the ClosetMaid wire cubes I bought at Target recently to add some height. It's really amazing how quickly a 6-foot table fills up; sometimes the only way to get more space is to go up. And, because these are open, I'll be able to tie signs and hang products from the wire.

I'll also be a vendor at the Scranton Cultural Center's Buy Local Holiday Market on the Sunday after Thanksgiving, November 25th, from 10 am to 4 pm. This is a new show, with sponsorship by ScrantonMade, which is both an online shop featuring Scranton area artists, crafters, and designers and a creative business community and collaborative resource for those artists. They featured me in their Vendor Spotlight series yesterday so you can read more about Primrose Design here. They've already featured some of the other artists and will continue to do so throughout the month.