galbraith & paul sample sale

Monday, December 6, 2010

This past Saturday, the 4th, was Galbraith and Paul's famous annual sample sale. Galbraith and Paul produce the most gorgeous hand block-printed fabrics in a lovely old factory building just off Main Street in Manayunk, PA. I first admired their work in the Room and Board catalog but didn't realize they were nearby.
My Friend Beth is fan enough to own one of their large drum pendant lamps in the "smokebush" pattern, so of course we were going, along with my friend Liz, who is always game for this sort of thing. The sale is held right there in their light-filled work space which was so inspirational to see with its high ceilings, tall windows, brick walls, rows of long printing tables, and all the printing plates and inks out too see. Mounds of pretty pillows were heaped tables. Lampshades, rolls of printed yardage, rugs, and scraps by the pound were all for sale at nice discounts.

This is where the story gets sad. I very conscientiously remembered to put a newly charged battery in the camera for this sure-to-be-blog-worthy event. When I took my camera out to start shooting, it was dead! I was flabbergasted! (Miraculously, it worked at home later when I tried to show my husband the problem). Beth gave me hope by producing her iphone which I proceeded to NOT take about 50 photos with. Apparently I was pressing the wrong button the whole time and got not a single shot! We didn't catch the goof until the next day at which point it was too late to remedy the situation. So, because I am an idiot, you will not be seeing any cool eye-candy shots of the studio (the above picture is from their website), just shots of what we bought. Excuse me a minute while I get a new tissue *sniff*.
Each color in these prints are inked on the block by a real human for every repeat of the pattern. This takes skill, patience and time, therefor retail prices of the fabric are over $100/yard. The sample sale price was $65/yard.
The versatile smokebush pattern. I bought a few yards in gold on linen to make a padded headboard for my guest room renovation project which I will share later.

After the feeding frenzy of a sale, we worked up an appetite and headed back to the car to repark near a restaurant. TICKET! This is what I hate about Manayaunk. The parking is impossible. There isn't enough of it and the meters are not well maintained. This one was broken and so was the next one we fed all our quarters to. The side streets have one hour parking which isn't enough if you want to sit down in a restaurant, especially Le Bus which has painfully slow service every time. Not wanting to receive another ticket, I left the restaurant in the middle of our meal to move the car. I circled the block and nabbed another spot apparently not far enough from my old spot to avoid another ticket. Basically my tickets for the day ate up the money I saved by buying fabric at the sample sale instead of retail!

So the day ended with a bad feeling for Manayunk, but a good feeling for handmade business and good design.

1 comment:

maria said...

Beautiful fabrics!!!!

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