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Bookplates and Book Stickers

11 Aug

aug-bookSticker-001Summer is a perfect time to curl up and read a good book.  There are so many summer reading lists out there.  From Oprah’s book list to your local library’s list, there are reads that are great for every taste.  Many people I know love to share their books, if they don’t take them out from their local library.  If you are someone who buys books, and loves to read all year long, you might also be someone who loves to share their books.  If so, a book sticker with you name on it is great to stick in the book so that hopefully it will make its way back to you at some point.

According to Webster’s, a book plate is “a piece of paper stuck on the inside front cover of a book that shows the name of the person who owns the book.”  But placement doesn’t really matter. I have one friend who is a voracious reader. She opts to order Address Labels that are long and thin and puts the stickers on the binder of books she lends out to friends.  This way, when it’s on someone’s book shelf, it’s easy for them to remember that the book belongs to her.  As much as she loves to share, she loves to get books returned too so she can pass them on to her next friend to read!

aug-bookSticker-002There really is no difference between a book sticker and a book plate.  Both are small stickers, identification labels, that have a name on them and sometimes wording like “From the Library of” and are often placed on the inside cover of a book.  Book stickers are great for adult books, for professional office books, for those with cookbook collections, and also for children’s books.  Children love stickers with their names on them.  In fact, many people love to gift a set of bookplates along with a new book. They are usually a very appreciated present and typically not too expensive.

A very nice gift for a teacher is a set of bookplates too.  Teachers usually have a lot of books in their classrooms and would love to have a book sticker in them, such as “From the Classroom of Mrs. Harris”.   Sometimes we see imprints like “Stolen from Catherine Smith” which is amusing, but also serves the purpose of identifying the owner.  Or, you might see “ex libris,” meaning “from the library of” before an imprinted name.  The only books that should not have bookplates adhered to them are collector books, as it diminishes the value, to have a sticker pasted to it.

Happy reading!

Best wishes,

Renee

 

 

 

 

Behind the Scenes with Museware Pottery

4 Aug

One of our favorite lines of pottery is Museware.  It’s a brand we’ve carried for many years and for good reason.  Today, we wanted to take you behind-the-scenes with this wonderful company.

In 1998sheree2, Sheree Burlington walked into a local paint-your-own-pottery studio and became completely obsessed. After three years of owning and operating a trio of studios, she began searching for a more creative direction.  In 2005 Sheree rented studio space in a historic mill in Manchester, New Hampshire. Fifteen hundred square feet of exposed brick walls, ancient & scarred natural wood floors, cool, rusted pulleys mounted to the ceiling.  And No Heat. She showed up with a bunch of paint and some brushes.  Years later, and in a new location, they work daily to create the hand painted, personalized pottery gifts we love, known as Museware Pottery.  Sheree is the designer and owner and refers to herself as “a licensed artist, seeker, writer, storyteller, sporadic blogger, pattern maker, humorist, singer and shameless self promoter.”

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Their unique company offers a wonderfully handmade line of ceramic family plates, platters, photo frames & more.  They are perfect for the many celebrations in life such as a long-awaited reunion, a happy housewarming, milestone birthday, retirement or other special family occasions. Each piece of their pottery is individually hand-painted. No two are exactly alike.

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This production table shot shows a typical wedding season day.

The Wedding Invitation Platter is their most popular personalized wedding gift. Conceived over a cup of hot tea & a Snickers bar, the exact language of an invitation or any text provided  is handwritten, in cursive, in the background on the plate.

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The Sketchbook collection is their newest addition to the line. It’s hand drawn, simple & modern. Plates, platters, vases and photo frames with a smile. Hand-painted and fired in a kiln and a perfect treasured item.  They are a gift that’s fresh, fun and personal. With a focus on the ever popular monogram, each pottery gift features a unique, rendered hand-sketched illustrations.

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Lots of testing goes into new product development. Each time they pulled a test piece from the kiln, they’d say “That’s my favorite!” “We love this 13″ plate with the house design for a housewarming gift – it’s our favorite – next to the monogram, owl, wreath, and flowers!”

aug-museware-002Museware Pottery gifts are entirely handmade. Real human beings handle every step of its creation, from the Italian guys hand pressing, trimming & cleaning the clay to the New Hampshire gal who carefully wraps, packs & ships a finished platter.

aug-museware-003aTheir designs are produced on bisque – unfinished white earthenware clay that is hand pressed & kiln fired to 1900 degrees. The bisque arrives by shipping container, eventually finding its way to their noisy, dusty mill. It arrives by skid and the guy who delivers it knocks on the door in such a distinctive way that they all know who it is. Once unpacked, each piece is carefully inspected for flaws. It’s rare that a piece comes out of the box and onto the shelf without some work. Bumps and other small imperfections are smoothed away with a stilt stone. Irregular bottoms are leveled by rubbing the pottery foot across the abrasive surface of a kiln shelf. It’s a noisy, grindy process and the air around the table gets cloudy with bisque dust.

All of this humanity means that everything about Museware Pottery is imperfect. The shape is imperfect – some slightly misshapen, others embossed with the maker’s finger prints. The painting is imperfect – humidity and temperature plays a role on thickness & viscosity. Since their studio is in an antique mill, if it’s windy outside, it’s windy inside. Even moving air can change the outcome.  The end result is that each piece is truly one of a kind. No two pieces are ever exactly alike, and that’s how they like it.  That’s art – perfectly imperfect.  Perfectly unique.  Try and enjoy Museware Pottery – we think you’ll love it too.

 

 

#NationalFriendshipDay

1 Aug

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Tomorrow is officially National Friendship Day. I see a lot of “national” days floating around on twitter and Instagram so sometimes I wonder who made them up and why. I did a little research and found out more about National Friendship Day. The date was created in 1919 as a reminder to stay in touch with your friends and send letters. U.S. Congress recognized the day in 1935 and it is always the first Sunday in August.

While it might be a little late to send your friends letters, it’s a great reminder to let your friends know how much you appreciate them. You can shoot them a quick text, an email or call them and let them know how much they mean to you. I try to tell my friends often how much they mean to me, but this day is a great reminder to let them know.

Do you do something special for your friends on Friendship Day? Maybe a fun tradition like brunch, a painting class, a girls night out? Share in the comments below if you have something fun you do. Let them know how much they mean!

xoxo,
Jennifer