• Made It!
  • Ashley Van Etten

Made It!

To the end of the summer season that is.

I went to bed knowing that for the first time in six months I didn't have to get up early. So of course, I woke up at 2am. I wandered around our moonlit house, patted our sleeping dog, Juneau, and felt content that Joe and I gave this season everything we had.

With nothing else to do or worry about, and since I was wide awake by now, I ate the last of the "last of the season" blueberry tarts from Seven Stars and chased it down with 2 Advil and a glass of milk. Then feeling a bit sad that it would be the last blueberry tart until next year, I tip-toed quietly over the sleeping dog and back to bed, while rubbing my aching shoulder that was sore from ironing 144 tea towels. 

Morning came at the same time. Joe slept in 2 minutes past 6, and I rolled over to hog the bed when it dawned on me that Seven Stars would soon be making their apple tarts, which I like even more than the blueberry tarts, and tomorrow would be the 1st of September, the month we celebrate our birthdays. It will also be a year since we said goodbye to our best friend Cody, which still makes me cry because I miss him so. I've heard people say that the change of seasons can be filled with different emotions and right now I'd agree. 

We decided to take a week off this month and take Juneau camping. We changed our studio hours to "open by appointment only (but drop-ins welcome)" for the entire month. Like a weight off our shoulders, albeit a sore one, the pressure of having to be somewhere lifted, leaving us to contemplate new goals and projects put on hold since Spring. That feels pretty darn good after six months without a day off, and I was humming a camp song (mmmm, I want to linger, mmm a little longer...) last night feeling in a kind of la-di-da way to myself.

We'd like to publicly thank our close friends, Jennifer Wolcott and Bernard Cabera, for saving the day and helping us at our farmers' market big event, Taste of the Market, this past weekend. Jenny and I went to Kenyon College together and share a love of art, the outdoors, dogs, travel and food (though she's the foodie, I like to eat at her house, there's always something interesting being served). Jenny is a food writer and blogger at pantryroad.com and managing director at Guida's Azores Food Tour. Bernard helps us with our financial projections (he can whip up a spread sheet like nobody's business) and Bernard and Jenny are both on our advisory board. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

As for the work ahead...

This month are working on two videos with our friend Sky Sabin, one about our pastry cloth and another showing our Lewis Bag at work. We will be adding new items to our online store as well as building, cleaning, repairing and setting up new equipment in the studio. I'll be drawing and working on new designs, hoarding samples of our textiles for a showroom in the back workshop, developing our wholesale, and playing with the dog. Joe has new images to develop and frames to make. We are hoping the month of September gives us the space, rest and momentum to carry us through the holiday season.



  • Ashley Van Etten