At the New York International Gift Fair

How do I think creatively? Where do I get my ideas? While it’s difficult for me to analyze exactly how my brain works, the subject came up in conversation with a close friend. We were at the Gift Fair with a mutual friend, Adeline Olmer (dear friend, designer, and owner of Antan Gifts in Riverside, CT. You can get an idea of her sensibility and taste at her gorgeous site She had some thoughts while watching Adeline and me look at things we saw at the show. I received these lovely comments from her and thought I’d share them with you. Good to have input on how my brain thinks!

The new things this year – well, I guess there are always new things – is materials being used in new ways. Wood used for vases, recycled rubber for baskets and handbags. Stainless steel lace. Sometimes these new things worked and were beautiful. Even when they weren’t I watched you attracted to combinations of color and texture. You’d stand and look, then touch, pick it up, talk to the booth-holder. Sometimes you loved the object, praising it for its just-right combination of elegance, refinement, proportion and exquisiteness of design. And the right object had not only to look right but also to feel right. Some objects felt dead to you.

What was even more interesting was when you didn’t love an object. You’d look at it, seemingly capturing what was arresting and then, as you walked away, talking about how you’d use it differently, filing the concept away – how, for example, you’d use those feathers or that cotton on a different surface, transmuting it somewhere into a new surface or object.

Necklace by Y. Yano made of bubbles of glass
Rubber Handbag by .. tactile, fun
Metal Lace dish by Metalaceart

Why you have to touch things and pick them up. You can’t tell what these three objects are made of made of by looking at them.

Some of the ideas and images I did take away with me will be showing up in my work over the next year or so. Or maybe several years from now, perhaps in a form that even I wouldn’t necessarily recognize. I can’t wait to see where these ideas will surface in my work.