Sunday, September 6, 2009

Arden Fair: Margaret's View

The Arden Fair is usually my first Christmas shopping adventure. My friend Carol and I have gone together for years. We arrive at 9 o’clock, walk the fair before the crowds arrive and plan our purchases. Then she has a fruit smoothie and I have two hot dogs. Fortified, we go back with our wallets ready.

We first encountered a revolutionary design of saltshaker – a beautiful ceramic dome, which, when inverted, can be filled with salt. Turn it back over and the shelf inside the dome keeps the salt from falling out until you shake it vigorously. Potter Suzanne Kent says she did not invent this, but her work is beautiful and practical.

But more inventions were present among the jewelers. Ava Leas brought her pins and chain-ges. She uses a simple chain with a ring on either end which she uses to make brooches into chokers. A wonderful way to wear that inherited heavy pin that you love but which would pull your blouse off your shoulder if you pinned it on. Leas creates pins which are layered metal in silvers, golds and bronzes – layered leaves, butterflies with a Jewish CHAI for life. She had many fanciful earrings, too.

Not present, to my chagrin, was Cynthia Marriott who invented the self-locking earring. Each stem is folded back and twisted so it will never fall out of your ear. (How many of us have a collection of single earrings because one fell out!). Will Cynthia show up at the Art on the Green in New Castle?

Also absent was Gwen of Gwen’s Goodies. I usually stock up on her jams for presents. Her rhubarb jam was so good I put down my toast and wrote her a letter right away.

But present, as ever, was George, (pictured above) whose hard work makes everything at Arden work, from directing traffic to saving shows with extra lighting solutions to booking the hottest musicians imagined and to just keeping everyone together. Can’t be done without him.

Suzanne Kent – 610-436-5806
See Ava Leas at
Cynthia Marriott – 610-647-7115
Gwen’s Goodies – 610-872-4041

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