Saturday, March 5, 2011

SummerBrooke Gardens Closing

Just a quick note to let you know that I will now be blogging at The Eclectic Cottage.  I hope those of you who were following will join me over there.  I have a new shop and lots of fantastic ideas!

Hope to see you at The Eclectic Cottage!

~ Brooke

Friday, August 20, 2010

World's Longest Yard Sale

First off I'd like to say thank you to all of you who left a comment on my last post.  I really appreciate your opinions and the advice you gave was really helpful.  I think I've come to a decision but, I'm still mulling things over and will keep you all posted.

I've been completely remiss about posting lately and I apologize for taking so long to share pictures from The World's Longest Yard Sale.  We had to deal with rain, bugs, 110% humidity, horribly uncomfortable beds, and lots of spills (all on me, it was like having the dropsy's, I kept spilling drinks and Hawaiian Ice's all over me!).  Needless to say we came home exhausted but we had a blast, lots of laughs, we'll definitely be going again next year!

So this is the car before we bought anything!  Can you believe it?  My Mom is the Queen of over packers and I've definitely inherited that gene!  In my defense, those three boxes on the right are empty and filled with tissue and bubble wrap.

The sales were set up all along the side of the highway.  There were typical individual yard sales and then there would be fields or parking lots full of tents and dealers.

There was just about anything you could imagine for sale.

How about a rickshaw, anyone?

Stuffed coyote?

Immediately after taking this picture, a police car drove by with two policemen sitting upfront and a backseat crammed with yard sale finds, I kid you not!

There was your typical fair food.  Hot dogs, hamburgers, BBQ, funnel cakes, cotton candy, kettle corn, ice cream, all kinds of junk food!

This is my Mom, enjoying her Hawaiian ice after I immediately spilled mine all over myself, thank God for tide sticks!

Don't you just love the name of this shop?  You gotta love the South!

How would you like to have this in your front garden?

We stumbled upon this adorable B&B in Jamestown, TN.  It was sooooo nice to have a relaxing hot shower on our last night and a comfortable room!

This lovely little patio garden was directly outside our room.

We're home!  I found two fabulous metal garden trellis', they traveled quite nicely on the roof rack!

And this is the loot we came home with!
I'll share more pictures of what I bought in a later posting.

Thank you all again for your supportive comments!

Warm wishes to you all,


Monday, August 16, 2010

To Change Or Not To Change???

Hello Everyone!

I hope you all are well and enjoying the last of summer.  I had a wonderful time at the 127 sale last week and will be posting all of my pictures soon.  Until then, I hope you will read this post and let me know what you think of an idea I've had for my shop.  I greatly value your opinions and look forward to reading your feedback.  Let me first start by giving you a little background... 

My shop, SummerBrooke Gardens is a tea and garden gift shop and has been open a little over two years, this is our third summer in business.  My original idea for the business was to find a piece of property that would allow me to have a gift shop, tea room, small nursery and gardens large enough to host small weddings and other events.  I knew this would be difficult and would probably take many years to find such a location, not to mention being financially able to take on such a huge endeavor.  In the meantime, I found a fabulous space downtown on Main Street in the heart of Brevard, NC.  I know none of you have visited the shop in person, but I do have some pictures from a previous posting here and there are also pictures on the shop website here.  During the last two years of observing what my customers are buying and listening to what they're looking for, the shop is slowly but surely morphing away from a more formal English look to more of a cottage look.  Anyway, long story short, I've thought from the beginning that perhaps the shop name was wrong for this location and I'm thinking of changing the name of the shop. 

During these tough economic times, I'm trying to do all that I can to ensure the business will be a success and have noticed that people walking along the street will sometimes read the shop sign and if the name doesn't interest them, they move on without even a glance at the display window.  The shop is so much more than tea and garden, its really becoming an eclectic mix and I have decided that the name of my other blog, The Eclectic Cottage may be a perfect fit for my shop.  What do you all think?  If you were shopping in a quaint tourist town, would you be more likely to go in a shop named SummerBrooke Gardens or The Eclectic Cottage?  Which one strikes your fancy more?  I'd truly love your constructive criticism, I'm in a bit of a quandary.

Warm wishes and blessings to you all!


Friday, July 30, 2010

The 127 Sale - AKA "The World's Longest Yard Sale"

I mentioned briefly in my previous post that my next buying trip would be to The World's Longest Yard Sale.  For those of you who are not familiar with this yearly event, the sale begins the first Thursday in August through Sunday and runs 675 miles from Hudson, Michigan to Gadsden, Alabama!  I'm anxiously awaiting this adventure, I've never been and am not really sure what to expect, have any of you ever been???

I decided to drive up to Ohio, just outside of Cincinnati the day before the sale begins, that way I'm already up there and ready to hit the road by 8am to find what I hope will be lots and lots of fabulous stuff!  I've mapped out our stops as best I could, spacing them out about 2-3 hours a day, not really knowing how far we'll be driving each day, but the plan is to head south into Tennessee and then home from there. 

I just spoke to a good friend of mine, Sandi, she and her daughter Alicia are also going but have decided not to make any overnight reservations and just play it by ear (I'm a planner, used to be a travel agent, not sure I could do that!).  Sandi figures they'll just sleep in the back of the car if there are no rooms available, me, I'm a princess, I need a bed!  Love ya Sandi, but talk about a sore back and stiff neck!  :)

I'm gonna be on the lookout for vintage garden tools, planters, beads for a Christmas project I'm working on for the shop (more about that another time!), old enamel cups (things I can use for scooping handmade potpourri I sell at the shop), galvanized buckets and watering cans, anything that suits my fancy! 

What would you all be on the hunt for? 
I'd love to hear from you!

5 days and counting!

Warm wishes to you all,


Thursday, July 22, 2010

To Market, To Market...

Just back from the Atlanta gift mart, so much fun and as always there is so much to see!
Three days of shopping, shopping, and more shopping!
I spent most of my time combing the temporaries and gardens for new and unique finds. 
I wish I had been able to take more pictures to share with you all, but most vendors and showrooms prohibit photography.
Luckily, I was able to photograph this amazing dress below...

This angel form displayed in the Kalalou showroom was without a doubt the most imaginative creation I saw at market!  
The dress is made entirely of faux foliage (what looks like sansiveria or mother-in-laws tongue) and flowers (possibly magnolias?)  A real showstopper!

These colorful flowers, letters, and numbers are handmade out of recycled tin.

I found this company down in the temporaries, wouldn't these flowers look great hanging on a patio wall or in a young girls bedroom?

Unfortunately this was the only decent picture I was able to get from my favorite showroom, Park Hill.  It was so crowded, you could hardly move around in there!

 I had such a great time and found some wonderful new merchandise for the fall and holiday season and I just received word today that one of my orders has already shipped.  
I can't wait to start unpacking all of my goodies!

I'm already looking forward to the January market, but next up is the world's longest yard sale running along the Hwy 127 corridor from Alabama to Ohio.  This will be my first 127 experience and I'm just chomping at the bit, only a week and a half til I leave!  Just imagine all the wonderful treasures there will be!

Warmest wishes to you all,


Friday, July 9, 2010

Crabtree Cottage, Cashiers NC.

On Wednesday, my Mom and I took a little drive up to Cashiers, NC and came across two really delightful shops filled with wonderful furnishings, french flea market finds and accessories for the home. Cashiers is a quaint mountain town just about 50 minutes from Brevard. Crabtree Cottage is the first of the two shops we visited and both are managed by the lovely Marian Duncan who so kindly allowed me to take pictures, thank you Marian! I also want to say hello and thank you to Marianne Vines (Marian and Marianne, confusing, I know!) who was minding Crabtree Cottage when we stopped in.
The rest of the photos from our trip will be posted on a later blog.

The front porch of Crabtree Cottage, I just love that aqua bench, I'd love to have it on my front porch!

This is my Mom, my best friend, Ann. Isn't this a great picture!

My Mom just loved the little turtle hanging on the wall.

Sorry, this one is a bit out of focus.

This ferris wheel is so whimsical, I love whimsy!
Thank you again to Marian and Marianne! Below is the contact information for Crabtree Cottage.
Crabtree Cottage
Shoppes at Cashiers Commons #46
Highway 107 N. PO Box 2707
Cashiers, NC. 28717
PH: 828-743-6728

Thank you for visiting!
Warm wishes,

Thursday, July 8, 2010

A Glimpse of SummerBrooke Gardens

Just a peek at the shop!

This is Emma, the official greeter. She comes with me most days and loves to get as many belly rubs as she can!

The front display window all decked out for the 4th of July.

A lovely angel fountain, so sweet.

This is Miss Glory

I should have gotten a close up of this necklace and bracelet displayed on a vintage purse, they
are made out of Victorian buttons and are absolutely gorgeous!

Well, that's all for now, I hope you enjoyed the pictures!

Thank you for visiting!
Warm wishes,