Posts Tagged ‘The Brass Giraffe’

Hello 2015! New adventures on the horizon

Welcome 2015 -- dogs in hats

Holy cow.  Welcome to the new year.  2015 is going to be amazing.  I can feel it.  I suppose I’m a tad late with this post, so let’s catch up.  Christmas was filled with all kinds of family, lots of travel, and a great deal of fun.  We celebrated our 1-year houseiversary and rang in the New Year with good friends and dogs!  Mine is the one with the hat.  Luckily my friend brought him an NYE date.  Aside from all the celebrating, I’ve been working my tail off because I have a big announcement!

I have opened a small space for my shop, The Brass Giraffe, in a monthly tag sale event called The Vintage Tin Can!  Shout it from the rooftops, baby!  I’m pumped!  I couldn’t be more excited or more worn out.  I’ve been working since the end of December to design my space, gather inventory, and sew, sew, sew for my studio collection!  Now you see why the blog was neglected!  The store had their grand opening on January 23rd.  I’m lucky enough to have a few hundred square feet to call my own alongside 35 other vendors.

Over the holidays, I went to a popular tag sale in Fallston, The Painted Mill.  I was blown away by the creativity.  I was kicking myself for not being a part of such a creative endeavor.  I had previously worked another market with the owner of The Painted Mill, but when she opened her new shop a year ago the timing wasn’t right for my business and my health.  So a few days later, when I discovered that a different person was opening a similar style shop just steps away, I felt like the stars were aligning.  This little area in Fallston was turning into Tag Sale Haven!  My handmade handbags and vintage style made the cut over at The Vintage Tin Can!  Suddenly weeks were flying by as the sale was fast approaching.  I was running on pure adrenaline stocking my space and fighting through some of the worst back pain I’ve had in my life.  Setting up a space while wearing a back brace is neither fun nor fashionable.

I meant to post teaser photos.  I meant to make an announcement.  I meant to sleep more than I actually did.  Basically, my life turned into retail prep full time!  Even as I write this, I can see our fully decorated Christmas tree in our living room, so being behind at home is an understatement!  It took many hours and the help of my family and fiance, but we pulled it together and it was incredible!  Honestly, I can’t thank you all enough for your help!

Take a look at the transformation of my space….

Blank slate at The Vintage Tin Can!

Blank slate at The Vintage Tin Can!

Brass Giraffe at Vintage Tin Can - Progress4

My father and fiance hard at work stapling fabric to the wall.

Ready for the molding!

Ready for the molding!

Brass Giraffe at Vintage Tin Can - Progress

The wall is complete!

The final product.   Ready for the January 2015 Grand Opening!

The final product. Stocked and ready for the January 2015 Grand Opening!

It all came together brilliantly.  Thank you for your help Mom, Dad, and Dillon!  I couldn’t have done it without you!  To the customers who shopped the sale or stopped in to see what it was all about, I appreciate your support!  Sabrina Barney, the store’s owner, has put together a fantastic group of vendors.  Her passion for this vision shows through in the hard work she and her family have put in to transforming the space.  The group of vendors in the store are some of the most caring, talented, and wonderful people that I’ve met in a long time.  It’s a pleasure to be working alongside them.  To say that January has been busy is an understatement.  It was truly an amazing experience and I’m really looking forward to the one in February!

I’m overwhelmed with excitement to be involved in a creative community.  A few posts back, I was talking about my lack of inspiration for vintage clothing and was debating where I was headed.  I can now say that The Brass Giraffe will be merging the two worlds of vintage and modern style.  My goal is to bring together curated vintage pieces, both in fashion and home decor, with handcrafted items — starting with my handbag line.  I’ll be steadily working on my own line, designed and produced in my studio, with the ultimate goal of launching a full blown, online shop for the vintage loving, modern woman.

Please excuse our mess over at The Brass Giraffe.  I haven’t been updating online as much as I’d like and our website layout is not my favorite thing at the moment.  I think a facelift is in order as I reinvent my shop!  Stay tuned.  I’ll try to chime in with some posts more frequently! Thanks for following along!

For the most recent updates on The Brass Giraffe — Find us on Facebook and Instagram.  Also find out about The Vintage Tin Can’s upcoming sales on their Facebook page!

Introducing, The Brass Giraffe Studio

I hope that you support your local and favorite small businesses year-round, but today is designated as Small Business Saturday to encourage everyone to shop small for the holidays!  This particular Small Business Saturday marks an important milestone in my own business endeavor.  As I’ve mentioned before, I am a designer and I own a vintage shop, The Brass Giraffe.  Well, as of today, The Brass Giraffe will no longer only be known for vintage!  I welcome the launch of The Brass Giraffe Studio, a place to find handcrafted, one-of-a-kind, high-quality accessories!

The Brass Giraffe Studio

It is something that has been in the works for awhile, but after a burst of recent inspiration I decided to take the leap!  I always saw the future of The Brass Giraffe as a full online boutique and today I took one step closer to that goal.  Currently, the studio is only carrying our house line, Gilly Lynn, which I design and handcraft exclusively.  Eventually I hope to expand this section to include other independent designers and artisans.  Go for your dreams.

Bohemian Diamond Clutch: by our house label Gilly Lynn

Bohemian Diamond Clutch: by our house label Gilly Lynn.  Find it here.

So while you’re shopping small this holiday season, stop by our website The Brass Giraffe for vintage and be sure to visit the Studio for handcrafted designs!

Are you shopping small for the holidays?

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The Whitehouse Market and The Brass Giraffe: September’s Recap


The Brass Giraffe at The Whitehouse Market

The Brass Giraffe Tent at The Whitehouse Market

We had a lovely Sunday afternoon at The Whitehouse Market in Bel Air for their September market.  I signed up my shop, The Brass Giraffe, for the market after hearing good things from a few friends.  Apparently, in the last few months the market grew from a handful of vendors to now over 50 small businesses!  I was so pleased to be included among such talented people. The Whitehouse Market is based on vintage and up-cycled goods and inspired by the atmosphere of a French Flea Market.  On a trip to one of their markets, you will find antiques, repainted and re-purposed furniture, vintage clothing, hand painted signs, up-cycled crafts, and some handmade items (jewelry, soaps, etc.).  The ladies of The Whitehouse Trading Co. and Summer Old Summer New have come together to produce a fantastic event for not only the Bel Air community, but for Harford County as a whole.


Vendors and shoppers filled the parking lot for The Whitehouse Market in September.

We couldn’t of asked for better weather or a more pleasant crowd!  Everyone who stopped by my tent was absolutely amazing.  It was all smiles, all day!  Even the people walking by, hauling re-vamped chairs and dressers to their car were excited!  My love gave up his Sunday to help me all day:  pack the car, set everything up, take everything down, and stay with me for the entire event.  Thanks to him and his talents, we even had an amazing chalkboard sign!!

The Brass Giraffe Chalkboard Sign

Chalkboard Sign for The Brass Giraffe

I will tell you that I encountered some very kind people exploring the market.  Everyone who stopped by my tent was impressed with the selection and quality of vintage clothing, jewelry, and accessories that were available.  Believe me, you won’t find any fleas in my space with the restoration and cleaning process that each piece endures.  One woman remarked, “Even the jewelry is cleaned!”  You will not find dirty, stinky, stained, and tattered vintage pieces at The Brass Giraffe.

Vintage Display

Vintage clothing, jewelry and hats.

Vintage Jewelry

Vintage Jewelry Collection

I also took a few pieces from my handcrafted handbag line, which I design and produce with my industrial sewing machine — all mostly one-of-a-kind.  The necklaces you see below are also up-cycled from my collection and are created with vintage fabrics and handmade beads.  Not knowing what to expect from the crowd at the market, I figured I would see what people thought of my handmade work.  I received such positive feedback about my line that I couldn’t be more ecstatic to get back into design mode.

Handbag Line and Vintage Clothing

My handcrafted handbags and necklaces under my label Gilly Lynn, mixed among the vintage items.

It was incredibly exciting to talk to everyone who came in and to listen to the wonderful stories they had to share.  One woman noted an original Peck and Peck Fifth Avenue Dress and told me a story of how her husband took her shopping at the store in New York City many years ago. After spotting a pill box hat (much like this one), another customer recounted a trip to Washington D.C. where she wore a hat, gloves, a dress, and heels to tour the monuments!  Can you imagine touring the monuments in heels?! Vintage hats, jewelry, and trends Another kind lady exclaimed, “a 1930s Bed Jacket” and was certainly surprised to see that I had written those exact words on the attached tag.  She said, “But, how do you know?” and I explained how I studied Historic Costume in college and all of the restoration work that I did on the piece.  Notice the bed jacket hanging to the left. Amanda & The Brass Giraffe It is these stories and the interactions with the people that make me love what I do so much.  People don’t dress like they used too and the quality of clothing is clearly not the same.  I do my best to clean and restore each piece that comes into my hands.  If I can’t bring it back to it’s original quality, I’ll modernize it with a twist on the design.  Say goodbye to 80s puffy sleeves, and hello to a cute cocktail dress! If you’re in the area, please stop by and see us for the last market of the season on Sunday, October 27th from 10am to 4pm at 140 N. Bond Street, Bel Air, Maryland.   If you can’t make it out, visit The Brass Giraffe online and always feel free to send me a message if you see a photo of something you’re interested in that hasn’t been listed in our shop yet.  It’s currently a one-woman show here (with some help from family and friends), but I do wear many hats — mostly vintage!

Shopping The Whithouse Market

Shoppers enjoying The Whitehouse Market

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