Anthropologie is a state of mind, not a $30 candle
The other day C and I were driving x town and she said she’d kill for a Sbux green tea lemonade and I realised I’d kill for a sip of a Sbux green tea lemonade, so I pulled the car over into a parking spot and said Ok, let’s go.
Now I know that there are about seventeen million Sbuxs in Vancouver, but I pulled over at least five blocks before the closest one and C said, “hey, there isn’t an Sbux here, it’s down the road!” And I said, “Oh yeah, well, either we have to walk to it past Anthropologie, or we can just get back in the car and drive down the road and try to find a new spot.”
You should have seen her eyes light up!
I think I should explain that the one Anthropologie store here had opened in 2011, but, I completely managed to ignore it for 2 years before C caught on to all this Anthro-mania. (Ok, I must admit that I do subscribe to their emails and do now have a customer number, so I’m not as pure as all that either, but that’s beside the point.)
So high excitement! We walked down the block and into the store. Chloe fell in love; just like that. She wanted to buy everything and, at one point, my brilliant fourth year communications student, who completely understands and writes 17 page long academic papers about marketing, hegemony, opinion makers and the trap of consumerism, said, “I have to buy something…anything…but I have to buy something!” 😯
There was a store here in Vancouver called Hobbs. It existed for about a million years until Thomas said that the store will close because his new store, Southlands, the most beautiful garden centre in Vancouver, has taken over his life.
I used to walk thru Hobbs every chance I had and used to have that same feeling of wanting to buy something…anything. But then I started having art and craft sales in my home and realised that something exists which I call the “Hobbs effect”.
I had these sales for several years…I think 6 or 7…in a historic house I owned prior to this one. The house was beautiful and, at the sale time, completely staged with exquisite hand crafted gifts and vintage treasures. And only open for one weekend, Friday to Sunday, (Friday afternoon/evening by invitation only). I usually had a sell-out due to the Hobbs effect. People would come into my beautiful, twinkly home and buy several things hoping to transform their home into a like replica, just like I would always come home with something exquisite from Hobbs.
So it would seem that Hobbs effect is still very real in me, and apparently, in my child too. I can’t say that I blame her. Each time I go to Southlands I’m so tempted to buy something out of the antique greenhouse and bring it home to somehow magically transform my house into an antique greenhouse complete with stone floors and mossy benches and orchids on rusty iron Victorian stages. I live in a Craftsman cottage with amber coloured fir floors and plaster walls…it isn’t going to happen.
But this house is a special home. It’s the home of an artist…me. And I do unusual things, like weld together railings to make a fire guard screen (above) and then leave it out in the rain to rust just right, or paint some hideously Fleckstoned lamps with my oils to make them look like rusty iron.
And maybe that’s the whole point of the Anthro style as I see it, and I’m the first to admit I might be completely wrong, but there seems to be a huge amount of artistically influenced goodies there, from sweaters which look and feel handmade to leather covered journals and painted cafe-au-lait bowls.
So, while we thought about buying an exquisitely scented candle in a reproduction mercury glass jar for $30, home we went without buying anything except the green tea lemonade we were craving, (because I’m difficult and want an authentic vintage mercury glass jar to put an exquisitely scented candle in anyway).
And when we came home C sat on the sofa, looked around and said, “Mom, you know, our house looks like Antropologie already.”
Linking very late with Mary for Mosaic Monday