Archives for posts with tag: Trends

wolf handbagI’ve made no secret of the fact that the last few years have been pretty rough.  I’ve had my ups and downs just like anyone else, but I’ve discovered they were minor setbacks at best compared to some of the challenges I’ve faced since 2009.  As a result,  I’ve learned how much more resilient I am than would have ever imagined.  I am braver, wiser, and more resourceful than I thought possible,  and after putting aside my art career to focus on saving my house and protecting my health, I’ve emerged from the past few years with an inspired and reinvigorated approach to art and writing that has resulted in a return to the gourd art I am best known for, a renewed passion for handbags and decorative box design, and the unwavering belief that my best years are ahead of me.

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I have four back to back art shows starting at the end of September and continuing through the end of October, a feat I have never attempted before.  I was accepted into the Armonk Outdoor Art Show in Armonk, New York (September 28 and 29) which I have been applying to for years without avail, plus I will also be exhibiting at An Occasion for the Arts in Williamsburg, Virginia (October 5 and 6), and the Lake Eden Arts Festival in Black Mountain, North Carolina (October 17, 18, 19 and 20).  I was told that several artists have applied to the Lake Eden Arts Festival since its inception and have never been accepted, while I got in on  my first try, which I have to admit, feels really nice.

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I was also invited to exhibit at the Smithsonian Craft2Wear Show in Washington, DC (October 25, 26 and 27), and was asked to bring my new wine boxes since the Gallo wine family will be in attendance, plus I am hard at work creating a line of decorative boxes and one of a kind humidors for men that will debut at this event as well.

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Five years ago, I was the top selling gourd artist in the country, with the sales of several $10,000 and $15,000 gourds to my credit. I am still  the only gourd artist to sell a single piece of gourd art for $22,500, but I gave up gourd art entirely the past few years when I went from my best year ever to my worst year ever, between 2008 and 2009.  I honestly thought that gourd art was over for me, since I had a basement full of gourds no one wanted, but not long ago I picked up a gourd and decided to start experimenting again, and the reaction to my first new piece in years was overwhelming,  11,000 people saw the dragonfly gourd I posted on facebook, and I sold that new piece, along with another, significantly more expensive work, at the Tryon Arts Center as part of their outstanding 2013 sculpture exhibit within just a few weeks of one another.  I am working on several new pieces for the Williamsburg show and hope to start getting into galleries and larger art shows with them again as well.

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Just a few days ago, I received my copy of the Page a Day Handbag calendar for 2014.  The publisher contacted me via email last summer and asked me to send photos of recent work, four of which made it into the calendar.  In fact, my handbags are the only ones in the entire calendar on a color background, and I am one of three handbag designers with more than one image on exhibit.  Most of the bags are from private collections and museums, and a large majority are vintage.  I was asked to submit photos for the 2015 calendar as well.

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My screenplay, LUCKY 13, about the Women’s Air Service Pilots,  was turned down by all five screenplay competitions I entered, however. the best of those competitions, the Nicholls Fellowship (offered by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences), did say the script was among the top twenty percent of the over 7300 screenplay submissions they received.  So I did something that is generally frowned on in Hollywood; I sent copies of the script to Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks, and included one of my best gourds in the submission to Steven Spielberg, who I understand is quite a fan of gourd art and artists.  It may never go anywhere, but you never know unless you try.

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Finally, I got tickets to The Daily Show in September, and am currently waiting for my confirmation to be a balloon handler again at this years Macy’s Parade.  I missed last years parade because of my broken ankle, but I promised my sponsor that if he could get me in again, I would come to the parade, even if I was on a stretcher!  And last, but by no means least, the 1969 Dodge Travco I have been working on for over 18 months is finally done and is currently on the auction block.  I taught myself about upholstery, laying carpet, and refinishing woodwork among a great many other things.  Check out the link on youtube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QJNvYfHnBmU&feature=youtu.be/

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I haven’t written anything in the last few months, because quite frankly, I have been embarrassed beyond belief to admit just how hard this economy has hit me.

Then a few months ago, I met a pair of business partners who book celebrity guest speakers, clergy and artists for luxury cruise liners, and within seconds the entrepreneur in me was reborn.   I headed straight into the studio that afternoon to design a handbag that not only highlights their company spirit, I also found a way to print fabric from that image that allowed me to line the bag with their company logo and create a handmade clutch to match!

I am working hard to launch a new corporate gifts link on my website, with humidors, jewelry boxes, decorative boxes – just about anything and everything  made from wood – because corporations will always exist and so will holidays and special occasions.

 

Three weeks ago, I received an email from a website that profiles handbag designers, regarding a casting call for a new reality show about accessories designers called Project Accessory, a spin off of the hugely popular Project Runway.  The show had four casting sessions; a weekend long casting session in New York, then one day sessions in Los Angeles, Chicago and Miami.  Unlike a lot of casting calls for reality shows, attendance at one of the casting sessions was mandatory, so after considerable debate, I decided to head to New York, figuring that it was best to be there when the process was fresh and I had the best possible chance of making an impact.  I loaded up a box full of handbags and took them all over town to see which bags got the best response,  filled out the 24 page application, selected my wardrobe, and flew to Newark for my debut.

My friend Kim, who lives an hour from Manhattan, graciously agreed to get up at 4:30 in the morning to drive me into the city with my suitcase full of handbags and portfolios, but when we pulled up in front of the hotel where the casting session was going to be held, no one was there.  I thought, well hell, I have the wrong hotel and then I thought “Oh My God…I have the wrong weekend!!!!”  I was immediately disavowed of this notion by a porter who asked if I was there for the casting session, then sent me upstairs to the lobby, which was on the fourth floor of a hotel that looked like a cross between a gynecologists office and left over sets from some recent Star Wars convention.

Clinical didn’t even begin to describe the Japanese inspired futuristic white molded plastic interior with “space age furniture” that would have made the Jetson’s proud.   Three other people were waiting on the gigantic purple ottomans that doubled as couches, looking for all the world like a bunch of overgrown kids on a Romper Room set.  One man came with his mother and brother and another man was frantically filing out all 24 pages of paperwork – paperwork which, by the way, took a practice copy and four hours for me to fill out, but he was whipping through it like it was a Sudoku puzzle he had to finish before his train pulled into the station.

The casting director showed up fresh from her workout in the hotel gym and told us we had to wait in line downstairs, so I headed to the elevators and out the front door, when the same porter who initially directed me upstairs accosted me in a thick Slavic accent to ask why I was back downstairs again. When I  told him the casting director sent me there, he loaded me back into the elevator and off we went again to the lobby, where the casting director loaded us back onto the elevator again and down we went.  By this time it was about 7:00 in the morning and we still had another two hours to wait, so the woman in  line in front of me and I traded life stories until a card table was produced with copies of the application on it, and the judging staff began to arrive.

There were three people in line ahead of me; a woman who looked like Rachel Zoe, and who’s participation in the series appeared to be a foregone conclusion.  She knew everyone in the place and had ten times as many samples as any of the rest of us, plus she was assigned a rather attractive young man to help her carry all her crap into the casting room.  She was supposed to be in the casting room for three to five minutes. Fifteen minutes later she came out with an envelope, which was the sign that you had been invited to the next round of casting.  Natasha, the jeweler I had been waiting in line with all morning, was next, and she came out with a very odd look on her face. She asked me if I wanted her to stick around so we could talk after my audition, and I said sure, if for no other reason than to find out what that look meant.  Well the design student who went in next, the one with recently dyed red air that was not a color  found in nature, dressed in yellow and black with a flap on her skirt that had a tendency to stick straight out and who showed up with her mother and fiancee, came out crying, and then I was up.

The door opened and I was ushered into a dimly lit room where eight or so people were lined up on folding chairs against one wall who never said a word.  There was a small folding table under a single beam of light in the middle of the room, and four women at the other end of the room in front of a draped wall with their names on a placard on front of each woman.  I recognized one name from the website that had originally sent out the casting call, but I went ahead and addressed the entire room, as if I were a hostess who was late to her own party.

Now before I go any further, I feel it incumbent upon me to describe the women on the judging panel, at least half of whom appeared to have divorced VERY well, once, if not twice, and they were certain by their appearance and their demeanor to let you know they were someone we were all privileged to be in the presence of.  Between the pilates instructors, manicurists, pedicurists, massage therapists, facialists, stylists, hairdressers, therapists, personal assistants, housekeepers, personal shoppers, drivers, clothing and jewelry budget, and expense report, I would guess that the collective budget for that day’s appearance was in the hundreds of thousands of dollars, a fact that was later confirmed by the $150,000 Birkin bag that was burnished in my direction, but more on that little tidbit in a moment.

I set my bags down on the table and was immediately asked if they were cigar boxes.  I thought to myself, this is the perfect lead in, so I launched into my well rehearsed explanation about how they were made, when the sound man said he wasn’t ready….awkward pause, followed by a brief salutation to the one woman on the panel I actually sort of “knew”.  The sound man said he was ready, and the entire interview took a nose dive followed by a right turn.  All four women started asking me questions at the same time, and not one of them let me answer until the scrawny little one the second from the left said, “do you compare yourself to Timmy Woods”, a handbag designer who also works with wood because her last name is, well, Woods.  That is kind of like asking an F16 mechanic if he compares himself to a Volkswagon mechanic.  Just because both work with engines doesn’t mean the two are even remotely related, so I said, no, I actually think of myself as the next Birkin bag.

Well I might  have well as been a maitre’d at Manhattan’s hot new restaurant who turned them away at the door, because the scrawny one absolutely imploded.  For the uninitiated, a Birkin bag is handmade in France by Hermes, and because they are handmade one at a time, and delivered on a somewhat unreliable schedule, it can take years to procure one, which makes them the most expensive – and most exclusive – handbag  on the planet.  They cost between $75,000 and $280,000. Victoria Beckham has two.

The woman in the middle, who looked just like Patty, the Millionaire Matchmaker, reached behind her chair, and waved HER Birkin bag over her head while the scrawny woman on her right launched into a lecture about the Birkin bag and why there was absolutely no comparison between MY exclusive, handmade bags and THOSE  exclusive handmade bags and finally Miss Matchmaker said that my line was too “niche”, but she would keep my information on file in case they thought they could ever use me.

There was a moment when I thought, I didn’t crash this casting call to SELL my handbag line to you, I answered a call for one of a kind accessories,  and anyway, you didn’t ask me to produce a pair of shoes I’d made or a piece of jewelry I had fabricated either, so if by niche you mean “one of a kind” as long as it looks like everything else on the planet, this clearly isn’t the reality show for me anyway.

As I hit the door to pack up my stuff in the lobby, a woman who showed up about an hour after the line started, and who looked liked she’d woken up that morning face down in stale beer after a particularly hard night as a cocktail waitress in the Tenderloin District, tottered up to me on her eight inch heels and said, “Your bags are beautiful….how did it go in there”.  I looked at her, smiled sweetly, and said…”it was tough” then had breakfast with Natasha, scored a rush ticket to see a matinee performance of Spiderman,  took in the Alexander McQueen show at the Met, and walked back to Port Authority through Central Park on an absolutely gorgeous afternoon.

With any luck this new show will be at least as dreadful as EXPEDITION IMPOSSIBLE, which is another reality series I tried out for this year.  We got as far as the third round before being cut.  That casting call called for “ordinary people” but if you’ve ever watched it, these “ordinary people” look like they were genetically produced in a laboratory to exacting specifications based on a rigid set of blueprints regarding what specific types SHOULD look like if those types were going to be featured in a magazine spread in Vanity Fair  shot by Annie Leibowitz.

I’m told that its considered bad form in business to admit when things aren’t what you want them to be.  Everyone wants to be in league with a winner, and I want to be a winner more than words could EVER begin to describe.  This economy is not only making it hard to maintain a respectable level of success no matter how much time or effort I invest,  it adds an additional level of pressure to appear as though business is booming, even though, its not.  I want my collectors to feel as though they have made a wise investment by supporting my business, but I also feel I am doing other artists a disservice by trumpeting a career that, at the moment anyway, isn’t what it used to be.

And then comes an event that puts my struggles in perspective.  An extremely talented artist I know posted  few days ago on her facebook page that a good friend of hers lost her 37 year old husband recently and without warning, leaving her with two small children to raise on her own.  My friend, Julie Miller Havel, is spearheading a raffle to help raise money for this young mother, so I immediately offered to donate a handbag, and was glad for the chance to do so.  I can’t imagine what it must be like to suddenly find yourself without your husband, or how on earth you explain to your children that their father is gone, and if not having the art career I had hoped for at this point in time is the worse thing I can say about my life, then I am very lucky indeed. http://www.sarahmoorefamily.org

I also have the chance to support a zoo fundraiser in Salina, Kansas called the Rolling Hills Wildlife Adventure Zoo-La-La Raise the Roof Celebration.  Its June 3 at the Rolling Hills park starting at 6:30 pm. This is what they will be auctioning off….

I have a brand new handbag as the centerpiece of a Ladies Night Art Walk in the cities of Golden and Littleton, Colorado from 4 to 8 pm on May 5 (the horse handbag at the top of this post). I also have a pinto tote up for grabs in a drawing for the event.  Check out the Spirits in the Wind Gallery, one of the hosts of this remarkable evening. www.spiritsinthewindgallery.com

I am not sure where the next few months will take me, but I continue to remain hopeful that everything happens for a reason, and that even though I have been ready for great things for more years than I can count, “God’s timing” as they say, “is not my timing”….and from what I hear, waiting never killed anyone….

A few weeks ago, I wrote about how I rarely let an opportunity to put my bags in front of anyone I think can help make them the international sensation I would love for them to be.

My timing isn’t always great;

I sent a canvas tote to Sandra Bullock just DAYS before the Jesse James scandal broke….

You can clearly see why this was a mistake…

I also sent a handbag to Kyra Sedgwick, even though I’ve heard through the grapevine that she’s no great fan of the “Six Degrees”game…

I sent a Scrabble Handbag to Oprah Winfrey after I heard she was a fan.  Apparently she’s not a fan of responding to her mail, although to be fair, I’m sure she probably gets a lot of it….

I sent a bag to Drew Barrymore, along with a script I wrote many years ago about the only known female stagecoach robber in America…

I’m still waiting to hear on that one….

Then, last year, when I heard that the Obamas were going to vacation in Asheville, I made a leopard evening bag for Michelle, a tiger tote for Sacha, and a cheetah tote for Malia.  I tried to deliver them to the Grove Park Inn where they were staying.

Funny, but they don’t allow packages to be delivered to a President and his wife at a hotel…..go figure….

Well a few days ago, and almost eleven months later….

I was so inspired to finally get a response from someone, that I went hog wild this morning and updated my website. I’ve added pictures of some of the new decorative boxes I have been doing, as well as some paintings, and my first love, gourd art…..

I was SO inspired, as a matter of fact, that I have decided to have a half off sale on all evening bags. The sale ends this Sunday, so act now! Because if it takes as long to get a thank you note these days as it does to update my website or have a sale, it could be a LONG time before I am THIS inspired again!

 

A few weeks ago when I was in the studio finishing work on the big cats handbag, I was listening to part two of “Oprah’s Favorite Things” to help pass the time.  When I heard Oprah say that she is a huge Scrabble fan, I looked up with great interest, since Scrabble handbags are not only fun for me to make, they are also one of my most popular accessories.

By the following afternoon, I had a custom made  Scrabble handbag and a handmade clutch ready to go in the mail along with one of my new 2011 calendars, a brochure, biography and letter of introduction.  I decided to send the bag to “O Magazine” because I have seen video of the piles upon countless piles of mail she gets at Harpo Studios in Chicago every week.  And, anyway, I’d sent a pair of gourd masks to one of her producers about ten years ago and never heard anything back.

 

Last April when I found out that Sascha Obama had decided to make saving the tigers a priority in her young life, AND that the Obamas were set to visit the Grove Park Inn in Asheville, and I dropped everything I was doing to create a leopard evening bag for Michelle, a tiger tote for Sacha, and a cheetah tote for Malia.  After packaging the bags in boxes lined with matching prints, I drove up to the The Grove Park Inn to deliver them, but alas, they wouldn’t let me leave the gifts, so I mailed them off to the White House that same day.

 

My  point is this.  I have never been one to let an opportunity pass to promote myself or my work, because I have to believe that somewhere along the line something amazing will happen, that the right person will come along to propel my career into the stratosphere, that whoever I have been waiting on, or whatever I have dreamed will unfold, whatever chance encounter, or opportunity I once acted on that “never went anywhere” (at least not in my time frame) is all part of a larger plan that I have no control over, but which I chose to continue to believe will happen, even when it seems as though I have run up against a brick wall.

I believe in serendipity and in the idea that even though I might be ready for the next phase of my career, the people and events that will carry me to the next level, might not be in place yet.  I haven’t heard back from either Oprah Winfrey OR Michelle Obama, but you never know when the phone might ring, or who might be reading this blog and think, I can do something to help this along.

I know Malcolm Gladwell thinks that there is no such thing as luck, that people only get to where they want to be based on where they were born and what family they were born into, but I believe that while family dynamics play a role in how we start life, the choices we make about what to do with the talents we’ve been given as we grow up, can take us where we want to be, even if the journey takes longer than we would like.  Or to be more accurate, where I would like because, as I have said before, I was ready to “be somebody” when I was twenty.  Thirty years later, I am STILL ready to be the next Prada, or Gucci, or Balenciaga.  And while I don’t have the money or the prestige, I have the drive, the goal, and the desire coupled with the steadfast belief that I didn’t get the talent I have by accident…there has to be a reason why things haven’t happened the way I have wanted…..

 

When I was twenty I knew EXACTLY what I wanted to do with my life, and I often felt that if I could have barreled ahead without restraint, I would have been where I THOUGHT I wanted to be a long, LONG time ago.  But I am also reminded of two quotes that have defined my life, and how grateful I am at this particular point in time that I didn’t get where I wanted to be thanks to the lessons I learned along the way.

Patience is NOT one of my virtues, as anyone who knows me well can tell you, and yet, when it comes to my art career, I will take all the time I need to get things just right. I had no idea how to make a purse, or where to market one, where to find the hardware…I used to carry a BACKPACK, if I carried anything at ALL, and, anyway,  I’d invested fifteen years of my life in a career as the top gourd artist in the nation. I’d been on HGTV, had articles written on my work in the Wall Street Journal, Southwest Art Magazine and Wildlife Art news, participated in group exhibits, had one woman shows, gave demonstrations at gourd festivals and gallery shows all over the country and even presented a gourd commemorating the 40th Anniversary of the Gombe Research Center to  my hero, Jane Goodall.  I  sold a gourd to golf legend Hale Irwin, was commissioned by the executive producer of the Lord of the Rings to create a piece for the Lord of the Rings; The Two Towers with Golum, Frodo and Sam Gangee, and I still hold the record for the most expensive gourd ever sold at $22,500.

It always bothered me that people spent HUGE sums of money on artwork they left at home.  No one buys Christian Louboutin shoes, a Rolex, a Prada bag, or a Christian Dior dress JUST to leave it in the closet, so why do people buy gorgeous works of art to leave them at home?  It seemed to me you could have an AMAZING accessory that was ALSO an incredible addition to your art collection.

And so, I embarked on the journey of a lifetime when I decided to combine art with function in one of a kind and limited edition handbags…I wasn’t going to line the purses at first, until one very wise woman  pointed out that without a lining, you would hear everything you carried rattling around inside it.  I knew I wanted to work with wood but I didn’t know how to protect the purses against water damage. I knew I wanted to hand bead some of the handles, but the last time I tackled a bead work project with any great enthusiasm,  I wound up with a pile of very expensive seed beads and a loom that gathered dust for years until I finally gave it to the Goodwill.

As the saying goes, “If you want to hear the sound of God’s laughter, tell him your plans” and I am convinced I have had God in stitches most of my life.  I spent HOURS on the internet trying to find fabric and handles and beads and varnishes, craft shows, art shows, wholesale shows and boutiques, and just when I thought I had one aspect of the design process worked out, something else came along to challenge my approach; how do you secure all the things on a travel trailer handbag that make the handbag so fun to carry without sacrificing its function; how do you finish the back of a leopard handbag when the front and the insides are so captivating; how do you wrap images around handbag when it has irregular sides, and THEN finish the entire thing in gold leaf?

Its been an interesting process but, as the other saying I define my life by so eloquently states, “Its the journey, its not the destination”.  I have had some amazing support this past year from some truly remarkable women, and I thank you all for believing in me when I’d started to think this might have just been the dumbest idea I’d ever come up with….

I can hardly believe that 2011 is right around the corner, but I already have two very exciting shows lined up in February and March (The American Crafts Council Show in Baltimore, MD and Natureworks in Tulsa, OK) that are inspiring me to hit the studio with great passion and determination.  I have so much I want to do and such great opportunities ahead of me that the sky is the limit.

There will be more insights in the days to come, but for the moment I just wanted to say to all of you who have been on this journey with me, whether you know it or not, your faith in my work has been the fire that has helped light my way.  Thank you from the bottom of my heart….

Much has happened in the last week or two; most of it has been really great, but some of it feels like I am in slogging my way through quicksand.  Despite appearances to the contrary where the bags are concerned, patience is not my strong suit.  I am ready to be the next Judith Leiber NOW….but, the universe evidently has other plans, because for every step forward I take, I seem to take two steps back.  Or as a friend of mine so aptly puts it “if you want to hear the sound of God’s laughter, tell him your plans”.

The good news is that several of my bags have been accepted into Julie’s Art to Wear in New York.  One of my best collectors brought this amazing boutique to my attention, having been a patron of the store for many years.  Julie Schafler Dale practically created the art to wear movement, and her store, on Madison Avenue, is an institution.  And no, NOT the kind you would expect me to be locked away in, thank you very much!

I also finished my first jaguar bag.  I have done jaguar evening bags before, but nothing this elaborate.  It has 23 carat gold leaf on the front and back of the bag, which is also lined with a matching print. It comes with a  jaguar print hand made clutch as well.

I finished my first Mah Jongg bag…this one is a tote, and I am already in discussions with the head of the American Mah Jongg League to take samples to their next competition for the purposes of selling these new beauties to a captive audience.  The image on the front of the bag features the flower suite, and the handpainted symbols on the bottom are Chinese for…what else? Mah Jongg!!!!!

I have been wait listed for two shows; the American Craft Council Show in Baltimore, and the Palm Beach Craft Show in Palm Beach Florida.  That’s not so good, but its better than being told they don’t want you at all, right?

The trade show in Florida didn’t go as well as anyone would have liked.  But on the other hand, I am in discussions with a boutique in Maryland that looks promising.

I was named the Handbag Designer of the Day by handbagdesigner101.com

http://www.handbagdesigner101.com/designer/669/dcm_(squared)_condit_denise

And finally, I made my You Tube debut as promised.   I’ve gotten 336 hits so far in the first week alone, and a spam email from someone trying to sell me on signing up with their service to help promote the segment.  How did I know it was a spam email? Because whoever wrote it told me I had “an amazing voice”.  I would have clicked on the link if he would have said I had an adequate voice.  After all, there IS still such a thing as truth in advertising, isn’t there????

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qqCSx76wQFQ

Don’t forget that I am offering 20 percent off any handbag on my site until December 1 along with free shipping.  So let me know what you want for Christmas and I will have my elves get right on it.  But first, I probably need to find some elves…..

www.denisemeyers.com

The handbag business is continuing to make minor strides in the marketplace with several new developments.  An online interview I gave last April to a handbag design website was posted this morning, and even though the questions I was asked to respond to were left out of the article (making for some pretty choppy transitions) I am pleased that it was finally published!

Handbag Designer 101 Interview

Secondly, my work is being debuted at the Trendz Accessories show in West Palm Beach, Florida and is being handled by a handbag rep who services Florida, the Caribbean and Puerto Rico, so hopefully by this time next week I will be up to my eyebrows in orders.

Thirdly, I managed to get portfolios to three top boutiques in Wilmington, Baltimore, and New York City where I hope to establish accounts before Christmas.  The boutique in Maryland is calling with an order, which is good, because I really need to have my Christmas accounts in a row and filled at least two weeks before Christmas.  And I have an idea for a handbag that will have all seven on the big cats on it for one very lucky lady to open on Christmas morning!

I also had a previous client contact me with a spectacular insight into what she thinks makes the bags so fabulous. She said women spend a lot of money on shoes so people can look….at their feet?  She thinks women should invest in a beautiful handbag, because a unique handbag can help you make a statement about who you are and what you are about better than just about anything else you can think of.  And of course, she’s right!!!!

So if anyone wants to get on board the Christmas Express to make a statement about who you are and what YOU are about, now would be a good time to do it!!   I am offering 20% off any handbag, evening bag or tote on the site, along with free shipping.

Happy Holidays!!!

www.denisemeyers.com

I am conflicted. Christmas decorations are already up at most businesses in town and it isn’t even Halloween yet….

But I have a feeling that if I don’t start reminding people now that Christmas is almost upon us, they will wait until the last minute to place their orders……

That would be a real shame…..

Because these handbags don’t make themselves you know….

Although, it would be nice if they did….

So here’s to Christmas….

May it be ever so bright…….