This Place Matters
2018.05.25 22:55:48

May is Preservation month and we celebrated by having facade work done. The 4th floor of our building needed some TLC. 200sf of rotting boards were replaced and repainted, some crumbling parging was repaired and we are looking good as new. Well almost. There are a few windows that still need the trim painted but that will happen early next week.



It is funny that on a day when the street is full with cars, with several buildings undergoing facade work thanks to a matching grant, I still found myself frustrated with people saying the following online in response to a posted photo from the 1950's-

"What a thriving, busy, nice town it used to be!!"

"Those days are long gone. Gardiner will NEVER be like that again."


Well sure, it was thriving then and sure it will never be like it was again. And sure these are statements being made by people fondly remembering their youth. I went out onto the street and took a few pictures because the street was full, it is indeed a thriving, busy and nice town.





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Getting Ready
2015.10.22 00:14:00

I was just describing my relationship to Christmas to one of the craftspeople whose work I carry. Everyone who has ever had a career in retail understands. I don’t decorate my home, I decorate my shop. I pour everything I have into finding, presenting and selling great gifts. And by the time Christmas gets here I am ready for a long sleep. Don’t get me wrong. I love this time of year. I just don’t have it in me to decorate my home and bake cookies and go to parties.



coaster leafWhy am I talking about Christmas in October? Well everything is arriving now. Unpacking, entering items into the computer and merchandising will be followed by taking pictures and updating the website. I will then be ready for my busiest two month of the year. I am looking forward to them and to seeing all of you.


I have found some great new items this year such as Robert Jones of Baltic Designs created votive candle holders, coasters, trivets and ornaments made from laser cut and layered Baltic Birch. I hope you all stop in and see what is new and if you are unable to please visit our facebook page for new arrivals. I can ship anything I have in stock even if I haven’t had a chance to put it on the website.


Tags: Christmas | gifts | facebook | handmade

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Gardiner Phoenix
2015.08.01 00:52:12

fire photoIn the afternoon on June 16th as a was preparing for an artist talk with our current artist, Robert Saunders, I heard someone yelling outside. I closed my door over and then went out and saw a neighbor who was across the street. She looked at me and said, "Clare, it's bad." Indeed it was. We had a fully involved fire in a building just three buildings away. I walked through my building and looked out from the back and flames were shooting out of a rear window. The fire department arrived almost immediately. They began fighting the fire from both sides of the building. I locked up and posted we would need to reschedule the artist talk then stood out behind the building watching helplessly as the fire went across the roofline to the next building.


I watched as a new business desperately tried to get some things out before the fire extended its reach. There were still two buildings between mine and the fire. We live in our building and have our business in it. I couldn't think of where to begin if the fire kept moving. I had my dog, Bo and my phone and the belief that the eleven fire departments now fighting the fire would put it out before I really had to worry about that. I watched for almost four hours before I felt confident I could walk to a friends for a bite to eat. When I returned, the electricity was still off and we waited outside to see if we would need to help the Food Co-Op get their merchadise into a refrigerator truck. The power came back on then I decided I needed to speak to a fire fighter before I could go to sleep in my building. I found the chief and he assured me that they would have people on scene. Everything smelled of smoke but I had my bed and my belongings unlike the 12 people from the apartment building. And I had my business, unlike two other businesses on the street that would have a lot of work ahead of them to get back open.


Even while watching the fire I had artists and craftpeople get in touch with me asking if they could do anything or offering to donate pieces of work. The outpouring of support from the communinty of artists was nothing short of amazing. I had no idea that I would end up with over 110 pieces. The silent auction raised over $6,800. The money going to help the residents and businesses get back on their feet. We have a great community here. As our mayor likes to say, "A little city with a big heart." Too true.

Tags: gardiner maine | Robert Saunders | gardiner phoenix | gardiner fire

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You have vitality. You have a downtown worth visiting.
2014.09.18 01:33:35

One thing you hear from people who don’t value downtowns is that the downtown will never again be what it once was…whatever that may be. Gardiner was a thriving mill town with factories, shops, hotel and an Opera House. Will mills and factories come back to our downtown? No. So if that is the only measure of success then we are doomed. Of course those things aren’t the only measure of success. And quite frankly it isn’t what people are looking for in a downtown these days.


I do believe when we look back, we gloss over the realities. People imagine that the businesses in town were always thriving but small businesses have always come and gone. We have records on businesses in our space going back to 1867. In the late 1800’s it was an apothecary and a dry goods store, under four different owners. In the early 1900’s it was a hair goods shop then a shoe store. The photo below shows the entire list to the present for our first floor space.


building history


The nature of being a small business owner hasn’t really changed much. It is risky to start a business. It is an investment of money and time and energy and often people’s lives change. So when a small business closes it doesn’t always mark a failure. Sometimes it simply marks a life change. A shift in how the individual wants to spend their time, money and energy.


Another comment I often hear is, “I thought business X was supposed to save our downtown.” Of course no one involved in any downtown revitalization effort pins the success or failure on one business. There is no magic bullet. A donut shop will not be the savior of our downtown, a restaurant will not be the savior, and an art gallery will not be the savior. But when you begin adding those businesses up, well then you have got something. You have vibrancy. You have vitality. You have a downtown worth visiting.


Each business is a piece of the greater picture. You may not eat a particular kind of food, or you may not find the offerings at a particular shop to be items you want or need. But that is ok. Each business contributes to the whole. I am excited that we have three new businesses opening this month. Progress! Visit each business to see what they offer and support the ones you like. If you want your downtown to thrive make a commitment to buy locally. And if you haven’t already, consider volunteering. I know Gardiner Main Street is always looking for volunteers for events like Swine and Stein. We all have the ability to shape our community.


Tags: Gardiner Main Steet | downtown | revitalization | Swine and Stein

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Better Late Than Never?
2014.09.11 23:05:29

bike maineMy last post was about winter ending and here we are going into fall. No excuses. I just didn’t make time for writing. It was a beautiful summer that included a vacation, for that I am grateful. We just had riders from Bike Maine in town a couple days ago. 275 bicyclists from around the state, country and world are riding to 5 different Maine towns. It was a great opportunity to show off our gorgeous little city and for me to show off Monkitree. I made sure to have all my bicycle themed items in stock and we had a great time. They had their evening meal out on the street and many people snuck out of line to see if I would be open when they were finished eating. My response, “I am here as long as you are.” I was busy until 8pm and had a fantastic time meeting the riders and volunteers. The volunteers included a group of kids from Westbrook High School who have a school program on bike repair.


I need to focus on the upcoming holiday season. Yes, Christmas will be upon us in a flash! So I am preparing. I need to get more items up on the website. I am a bit behind. Swine and Stein is in October. My favorite event in Gardiner! Music, beer, food. What’s not to love? In addition to organizing the first annual Beard and Mustache Competition at Swine and Stein, I am working on a trunk show that I will tell you more about when I work out some of the details. Very exciting! Of course there will also be a new show in November so I have that to take care of as well. So suddenly my life speeds up. Fun!


Tags: Monkitree | Bike Maine | Swine and Stein | Beard and Mustache Competition

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Winter! When will it end?
2014.03.15 01:25:18

SometimesAllThatIsLeftIsTheAnvil - Copy


OK winter. I am ready for spring! Right now the walls are bare as I prepare for my spring cleaning which includes a fresh coat of paint on the walls. The next show is "Working Through" by Jamie Ribisi-Braley. I am looking forward to being surrounded by her work.


Below you will find information about the show from the press release:


The body of work communicates not only working through the process of creating art but also working through chronic pain that can sometimes make creating art a challenge.

Many artists know the feeling of wanting to pack in the brushes but for Jamie it goes further, “As I’m working through the process, I’m also working through chronic pain that makes it difficult to be in the studio as much as I need to be. Namely, migraines dampen my studio practice. Working on these abstract pieces, full of turmoil and quick paced lines of repetitive mark making, is a way for me to work around the pain and let it all hang out.”

As part of working through her process, Jamie creates small sketches which will be included in the show. These studies allow the artist to work through color schemes, composition and movement while remaining finished pieces in their own right. “In my studio there are always at least two paintings going at the same time as well as some small oil sketches on paper or tiny canvases”.

To Jamie, her process is also a statement on how she wants her health to be. She is in control, whether it is reinventing the color and composition, or taking a previously finished painting and completely painting over it. Her process demands that she starts fresh and takes control while she is “searching for the point when it all feels better.”

Tags: jamie Ribisi-Braley | maine artist | oil painting

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Renovation Realities
2014.02.08 02:43:26

3rd back to front before after demo copy


We don't only have a business at 263 Water Street, we live here. For the past few years we have said we were living like college students. The things I thought I would have to change immediately (orange trim, a pencil sharpener attached to the wall) I quickly pushed to the back of my mind while we worked instead to prepare the first floor space and then opened Monkitree.


Much of this past year was focused on turning the office space on the 2nd floor into an apartment so we would have somewhere to live while we tackled the top two floors. The second floor is great but now we are crammed in there with all of our belonings while the demolition takes place. The picture above gives you an idea of the extent of the demolition. It is complete. Back to the bricks. The plan is to do it once so we need to do it right. Which means getting a good look at the beams, the plumbing and the electrical. I have no idea how long it will take until the upper floors are our new living space but we are starting to see how that might look and it is pretty exciting. 


Anyone who has lived through a renovation knows it can be stressful and dirty. The demolition portion is wrapping up so the truly filthy part is coming to an end. We have many decisions to make but one we have already made is to keep the space as open as we can. Windows, insulation and some exterior work are first up so that gives us plenty of time to think about how we want to use the space while we try to figure out how we will pay for the next phase...time to get to work!

Tags: renovation | downtown | main street | Gardiner | Water Street

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Blech! This isn't my milk.
2013.10.24 02:15:09

007 - Copy


The current show "Is this my milk?" has been up since September 27th and will be up until November 23rd. The show features the work of Mary K, Jeff and Denae Spencer and expresses their emotions relating to caring for Mary K's mother who had Alzheimer's. The work is very personal. Mary K was clear from the start that she wanted to express the joy and humor of her experience. Mary K created 422 ceramic milk glasses which were decorated with the words, "Is this my milk?" The display of glasses was a very powerful statement about dementia and the constant questions those caring for loved ones with dementia experience. Her mother asked "Is this my milk?" a lot. Only once did she take a sip from a glass that didn't contain her milk. To mark that ocassion, Mary K made a single glass for herself that said, "Blech! This isn't my milk." She brought that the night of the opening and sure enough people loved the "Blech!" glass. Yesterday Mary K dropped off five "Blech!" glasses. Now there are four.

Tags: Monkitree | Mary K Spencer

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The Power of Art
2013.08.06 21:43:46

It has been a while since I have written anything. Life is busy. I returned from a vacation in Calgary in July and began preparing for the current show- What's in a Name? I took advantage of having Peter and his kids in town to be especially ambitious and rearranged the entire space and added new shelves and a card rack in time for the opening/Artwalk on August 2nd. I am amazed we got it all done but it always seems to come together.


Which brings us up to opening night. The artists Marsha Proud Coelho and Peggy Cope Mascher arrived just after a downpour I worried might keep people away. Fortunately things cleared up and downtown filled up with with people ready to see art and socialize. Early on a woman came up to me and said, "Where do I know you from?" I was certain that she had been in before. She insisted she had never been in before. We were both at a loss but were sure we would come up with how we knew each other. Later in the evening she was standing with her grown daughter. Just as I walked up the daughter's earring fell out. She explained that whenever her earring falls out something important happened. She then asked the artist to come with her over to one of her paintings. She shook as she looked at it. The painting moved her in a way I had never seen before. She decided to purchase the painting, her first art purchase. I remember buying my first piece of art. It was exciting but I dare say I have yet to be so moved to the point of a physical reaction. Something to look forward to I suppose.


A bit later in the evening her mother, the woman who I was sure I knew from somewhere came up and said, "I remember how I know you." I walk Bo down at the waterfront every day. Many days for the last few years there is a woman who would sit in her car looking at the river in the morning. Bo would always pull me over to her and they would greet each other. This probably happened at least once a month for years. Well this was THAT woman. We had greeted each other, talked about dogs but never introduced ourselves. I had never seen her outside of her car, and now she was standing in my gallery and her daughter was buying her first piece of art. And I was so thankful that she figured it out becasue I was sure it was going to keep me up at night trying to remember where in the world I knew her from. I should have known it was Bo. 


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Great Energy!
2013.05.11 22:28:16

Well Spring has finally sprung in Maine. The leaves are coming in, the temperature is perfect. I have the door wide open. Everyone is out and about. But it is more than just the season that has me energized, we have new neighbors. Alex Parkers Steak House opened a few weeks ago and Vintage Wine Bar is now officially opened after having a soft opening for the Artwalk on May 3rd. I couldn’t be happier. Both have created wonderful spaces for people to enjoy good food, wine and company.

Of course there is plenty to be energized about at Monkitree. “Lost Maps of Norumbega” by Ken Gross (up through May 25th) was written up in Artscope Magazine. Here is a link to the preview. If you would like to read the whole article I have some copies of Artscope available at Monkitree.

jcNext up is “Chaos to Quiet: Deconstructing Complexity” by John Carnes. John lives here in Gardiner and has a studio space at Artdogs, just a few doors away. In this show, John communicates his emotional response to both landscape and the human figure. The show opens on May 31st and the artist reception is June 14th from 5-9pm. I can't wait to see John's work in this space.

I’m looking forward to an exciting summer. I hope to see you in Gardiner!

Tags: Alex Parkers | Vintage Wine Bar | Ken Gross | Lost Maps of Norumbega | John Carnes | Chaos to Quiet

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On To The Next
2013.03.27 23:15:15

No sooner than feeling like I am prepared for the upcoming show, then I am onto the next. Lost Maps of Norumbega opens on April 5th. Postcards have been mailed, press release has gone out, opening listed on various event listing sites. Feeling pretty good.


So onto worrying and preparing for the next show. The yet un-named show featuring John Carnes. John and I met this morning to talk about

the show and to look at work. His landscape and figure works are fresh and contemporary. We picked a few options to include in the postcard so we can have those ready before Artwalk in Gardiner on May 3rd.


John has a piece featured in the April issue of Maine Magazine:



Tags: John Carnes | Gardiner | Art | Maine Magazine | Artwalk Gardiner

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What would make your community better? And what are you willing to do to get there?
2013.03.14 02:16:07

swine and steinThe community of Gardiner, where I have chosen to make my home and start my business has been awarded an Orton Family Foundation Grant. The process involves engaging the community in planning for our future. We decide what is the Heart and Soul of Gardiner then make sure we plan going forward with those ideals at the forefront. It is an exciting process but will only work for the community if people step up and get involved.


This Friday, several organizations and the city are holding a joint volunteer recognition event. This has me thinking about opportunities to get involved. What can people do in their communities so make their community the best it can be? The short answer is be engaged. There are already opportunities to get involved- join a city committee, volunteer for an organization, or go to a city council meeting. I know it is easier said than done but there are resources for finding out what is a good fit for you. In Gardiner, the links below can get you started- find out what the city committees do, check out organizations websites to see if they interest you, look at the city council agenda to see if there is anything you would like to know more about.


City of Gardiner

Gardiner Community Calendar

Gardiner Main Street

Johnson Hall

Boys and Girls Club


We are all (us humans) very good at identifying problems- “someone should really clean up the stream”, “Joe’s yard is a mess”, ”there is too much turnover in businesses in town”, “my street doesn’t get plowed enough”. All of those things and more might be true but there is something you can do about it. A city or town is no more than the sum of its community members. So when you identify a problem think about what you can do to make it better. Here in Gardiner it is obvious to me that we have an incredible community willing to work very hard to make Gardiner an amazing place to live. And we would love for more people to get involved!



Tags: community | volunteerism | gardiner main street | johnson hall | boys and girls club | city of gardiner

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How Is It Almost February?
2013.01.25 21:18:27

windy sundayOne of my big goals this year is to really focus my marketing efforts. In order to do that effectively when you switch out artwork every two months, is to plan things out far in advance. For example, for the Lost Maps of Norumbega Show coming up in April, the print ad for artscope magazine needs to be finished in a week. So here we are in January of 2013 and all of my shows are scheduled for the year. Feels pretty good actually.


So I am getting ready to open a new show Double Vision a week from today, working on the print ad for April, thinking about opportunities to market the other shows and starting to think about my dream lineup for 2014. But today I need to make sure I am ready for next week! Double Vision is going to be an interesting show to organize. The mixture of photography and pastel paintings should be a challenge to hang. And Fran and Jim Townsend are quite prolific so I will have a lot to work with. So here is am- post cards mailed, some online listings still to post and hoping the weather cooperates with us for a February 1st Opening reception.


Photo credit: Windy Sunday by Jim Townsend



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Monkitree Has a Cure for Winter Doldrums
2013.01.10 00:54:58
Not that we are having much of a winter so far. We have some 40 degree days coming up… in January! We’ll see how I feel when February rolls around. More likely than not, people will be looking for things to do to get out of the house. Local Color which features Nancy Keenan Barron, Johanna Moore and Megan Bastey is hanging through January 26th and I hope everyone gets a chance to come and enjoy it.

3We are of course working on our next couple of shows and February 1st we are opening Double Vision. It features the work of Jim and Fran Townsend, a husband-wife team of photographers/artists from Richmond, Maine. The show represents the point where their passions converge and diverge. As a husband and wife they share life but see it through their own artistic filter and bring to you the viewer their individual interpretation of the world around them. Fran works primarily in pastels and chooses local scenery for inspiration. Jim is a photographer who believes that newer genres of photography require different styles and perspectives, and that the art of creative photography is enhanced by the availability of modern digital cameras, filters and processes. Jim has had pieces in group shows here at Monkitree and I am excited to showcase more of his work and look forward to seeing Jim and Fran’s work together. When I joked with Jim about this show taking place around Valentine’s Day there were some comments about exploding hearts…that said, artwork does make a lovely Valentine’s gift :)

And opening in the Spring, The Lost Maps of Norumbega by artist/cartographer Ken Gross opens April 5th. Working in block print, ink illustration and watercolor, Ken explores the world around him. As Ken put it-

“After many years of claiming that Cartography is an art in and of itself, I have been given an opportunity to prove it. I have been invited to present an art show composed strictly of maps…as art.”

I personally can’t wait to see how this show shapes up. More information to come…


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What a Ride!
2012.12.11 22:12:40
wbfWhen Dave Engledow's World's Best Father photo series went viral this fall I was a bit nervous about what that would mean. Last year I threw a paypal button up on my website to help Dave sell the 100 calendars he printed. Surely going viral would change things. And boy did they! Dave printed 1500 calendars thanks to the Kickstarter supporters who helped Dave come up with the money needed for the printing cost. 1200 came my way to ship from the Monkitree website. Our brand new Monkitree website! As in hot off the presses.

The calendars arrived and we were off and running. We worked out the kinks and thanks to Peter we were able to keep the labels printing and the packages going out the door.  831 packages with 1200 calendars going all over the world. The World has spoken- Dave Engledow is the World's Best Father. The very first order came from Bree Candland (an excellent music blogger - What Bree Sees) who essentially lives around the corner from Monkitree (she selected in store pick-up). And pulling up the rear was the first person who "liked" Dave's facebook page- Nate McNeil.

If you are interested in seeing where the calendars went off to, Peter created a map using Map Your List. This is not intended to be 100% accurate and does not include the calendars sent to those who supported the Kickstarter campaign. but gives you an idea of the reach of the calendars.

Click here to view the map

A special thank you to Dave for creating the calendar, Alice Bee for being a great sport and Jen for the creation of Alice Bee, supporting Dave's work and your service to our country. Thanks for allowing me to be involved in your success and another big thank you to Peter who helped me with the shipping labels.

Thanks to all who purchased calendars! I hope you enjoy them and if you are giving them as gifts that they are well received!

Tags: Dave Engledow

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Tis the Season
2012.12.02 03:39:28
Today is the first day of December and for me this is when the Christmas Season begins- not the day after Thanksgiving or (God forbid) Thanksgiving Day but the first day of December. I definitely had people out today starting their shopping. I am a big fan of the last minute shoppers so if you are one please feel free to come in December 24th and I'll hook you up.

Here in Gardiner it is beginning to feel festive. The carolling is about to begin and the tree lighting will take place in about a half hour. The weather cooperated and it starting snowing to put us all in the mood. I'll try to duck out and participate and get a few pictures of people bundled against the cold.

Last night we had the opening of the Local Color show and it was a fantastic night. The show is beautiful! People have another opportunity to come out this coming Friday for the Artwalk to see the show which is up into January. If people would like to purchase pieces to give as gifts for the Holidays we can make arrangements for that.

Remember to enjoy the season everyone. Be kind to each other.


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Support Local Businesses This and Every Holiday Season
2012.11.14 01:34:35
buylocal smIn December of 2010, I wrote a blog post about support local businesses. Imploring people to buy from the small retailers instead of the big chains to keep money in our communities. I went back and read it today. Of the five small local businesses I mentioned in that post only two remain- Monkitree and the A 1 Diner. Of course all the chain stores I mentioned are still going strong. So I figured I'd get an early start this year and encourage everyone a bit earlier to shop small retailers and shop local this Holiday Season. For every $100 you spend at a local business $68 stays in your community compared to $43 at a chain.

I have recently discovered that this is far from a new concept. A friend who works in the archive room at the Gardiner Public Library told me she has come across ads from the 1800's imploring people to shop local and keep their money in their community. So what can you find locally? Well here in Gardiner we have some new Pop-Up stores for the Holiday Season. So in addition to Monkitree, Sara Sara's and Reny's you will also find- Earthbound, Trinkets and Treasures, and Pooch's Second Hand Store.

While Black Friday and Cyber Monday get a lot of attention with their flashy deals, it is Small Business Saturday that will do the most for your community! 


Tags: shop local | small business saturday

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My Favorites
2012.11.09 02:51:20

cheese-marker-1.jpgOk so my favorite things change like the wind. Certainly if I have it at Monkitree I really like it but we all have favorites. As I am typing this it is freezing rain outside and my fingers are cold. It might be 68 degrees in here (I keep the heat low...fuel oil is expensive!). So you might think my favorite at the moment would be something to keep me warm like a scarf but my mind went right to food. Which got me thinking about a nice glass of wine and a selection of cheeses. I love these cheese markers. They make me want to have a party! They are laser cut acrylic and come with a dry erase marker for writing the names of cheese on the animal the cheese comes from. Brilliant. A goat cheese. Write the name on one of the goats in the set. A nice Cashel Blue? Write that on a cow. You get the idea.

Of course if I'm having wine and cheese, I would also want some nice cured meats. Certainly one would need a nice board to place them on. And that makes me realize I don't have enough boards up on the site yet. So instead of imagining myself at a party with fantastic cheeses and cured meats (and wine!) I should get back to work!

I wonder what wines I have at home :)

Tags: cheese markers | unique gifts

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Learning Curve
2012.10.25 20:01:00
The push to get the new website up in time for taking orders for Dave Engledow's World's Best Father Calendar resulted in our beginning to take pre-orders on Saturday. October 20th at about 5pm. We did all sorts of testing to make sure orders would go smoothly but as always there are just some things you don't think of or couldn't possibly know about. That was certainly the case with our launch. I want to thank all of the international customers who were patient with us sorting out the international shipping rate and those who made me aware of a problem with the international orders. A special thanks to the woman who called from Germany to let me know exactly what the error message was! Turns out US banks require an address verification that many international banks don't allow. Who knew? A few clicks and that was solved.

As orders began coming in it was exciting and a bit terrifying. Monkitree sits in the city of Gardiner, Maine. A town of about 5,000 people. Sure we are near to the state capital but in reality Maine has less than a million residents. My foot traffic is not high and is mostly event driven. I have new art shows every two months and we have Artwalks in town three times a year. Like most retail I do most of my business in December. So seeing the orders rolling in in October was something new for Monkitree. I have 20 years of retail experience and worked in Washington, D.C. for most of that time but the last few years have been in Maine and you do get used to a slower pace.

Like many people in todays world I stay plugged in. My Monkitree email arrives on my phone so as orders come in I am aware of it and I have to say it was hard to put the phone down at night. I imagine it would be like checking on an infant to make sure the baby is still breathing. I have no children of my own so Monkitree is my baby and I needed to be sure nothing was wrong. I'd open the email and look to see if there were comments on the order or additional emails coming in from customers having trouble. I am hoping, now that I have a few days of orders under my belt and most of the kinks have been worked out, that I will begin to relax a bit...that is until the calendars arrive and I move onto the next adventure of shipping them all over the world!


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Climbing the Monkitree
2012.10.20 02:41:14

Hello. Hello.

When Peter and I first moved to Maine with the plan of renovating a building in a historic downtown, opening a gallery and living in the building throughout the process, I started a blog called "Climbing the Monkitree." Little did I know that two years after opening Monkitree I would be recreating a website and starting a new blog right here on our website. We have had great progress over the years but it has felt like a series of baby steps.

A couple of years ago, my Dave Engledow taking a picture of Alice Beefriend Dave Engledow and I talked about including his photography in a show at Monkitree. We made it happen. The show was called "Plastic Fantastic: The Art of the Toy Camera" and it included Dave's images created with the Diana Camera. It was a great show and I hope had some influence on Dave to continue pursuing his photography (do you like how I try to give myself some credit there). Dave did continue taking pictures and after Alice Bee was born he began taking his World's Best Father series.

Last year we threw a paypal button up on our website so Dave could sell what had become the World's Best Father Calendar. We sold the calendars mainly to friends and family. Dave began his Engledow Art Photography facebook page and fans started growing. With more fans come more calendar sales so Dave started a Kickstarter campaign so he could print enough for his new fan base. Well that just generated more fans and then Boing Boing, Huffington Post and Laughing Squid paid attention. Next thing you know Dave is getting a call from the Today Show. Last time I looked he had 36,723 facebook fans.

So the pressure was on! Spiff up that website and start selling calendars! I hope you enjoy everything I have on the website so far. It is a work in progress and I will definitely be adding more beautiful pottery, jewelry, scarves, wooden serving pieces and more.

I took this picture of Dave taking a picture of Alice Bee at her birthday party last year.

Tags: Dave Engledow | Monkitree | Art | Craft

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