Looking for Holiday Greens in Richmond?

Find beautiful arrangements plus unique greenery for your own creations at

Holiday Gifts & Greens Market "Inspired by Nature"

     The ladies of The Boxwood Garden Club create fabulous wreaths and table arrangements for you to purchase at the Holiday Gifts & Greens Market at Grace Baptist Church in Windsor Farms.  The key to scoring something wonderful for your holiday home is to get there when the doors open. The outstanding designs sell out very quickly.

     I bought these two topiaries last year and put them in the large metal cachepots.  Though the boxwood and magnolias were live and green when purchased, I have let them dry throughout the year, and they still look beautiful to me.

Holiday topiaries at the fireplace78

     A lot of the arrangements that you will find at the sale look similar to these greenery arrangements gracing the pages of Pinterest.

In addition to arrangements and a small selection of curated vendors selling Christmas presents, you can also purchase fresh and often hard-to-find greenery to create your own holiday designs.

     Put December 7, 2012 on your smartphone calendar and be at Grace Baptist Church in Windsor Farms by 10 a.m.  This is one shopping event that you really will not want to miss.


Small Business Saturday: Shop Local at The Pink Palm’s Lilly-licious New Richmond Location

The Pink Palm Has Moved Just Across the Street . . .

to a bigger and brighter location.  With the new pink doors now open,

Small Business Saturday is the perfect time to stop by The Pink Palm and support one of the happiest places in Richmond.  You can not help but smile when you enter this big confection of a space.

     No longer crammed all together, you can fully see and appreciate the artful designs of all of the Lilly Pulitzer inventory,

as well as treasures from curated vendors selected by creative owner, Lizanne Jeveret.

After too much food and too much Black Friday, drop by The Pink Palm at 5019 Huguenot Road (River Road II Shopping Center) and relax.

Let your blood pressure drop and your spirits rise.

You are sure to find the perfect gifts for all of the Lilly lovers and beachniks in your life.

     Happy Holiday Shopping!

All photos by Avad Fan from my iPhone.

Welcome to Richmond, Brocante Home!

Thanks for bringing Annie Sloan’s Chalk Paint to the Capitol City

     You have been reading about Annie Sloane’s chalk paint for awhile now as I have been freshening up the old brown furniture around our abode.  My source for the paint has been the fabulous French shop in Irvington, Brocante Home.  Though it’s a bit of a hike from the West End, every time I head to the Rivah with friends, we make a point of stopping in and leaving with at least one new can of paint.

     The owner of Brocante Home, Rachel Pugliese, loves to teach her customers about the wonders of this paint.  In fact, most Thursdays you can find her in the store paintbrush in hand transforming an old piece into something wonderful.  She is always full of tips and has started offering two-hour workshops to help her customers get comfortable with this easy and clean medium for transformation.  She has even named the workshops “Paintbrush and Pearls” to further her point.

     One of the posse and I decided to try the workshop the other week, and sure enough Rachel was wearing her pearls as she took us through different finishing techniques to use with the chalk paint and waxes.  Of all of her pearls of wisdom gathered from experience, the most valuable to me was the importance of buffing after waxing and sanding.  A really good going over with 800 grit sandpaper makes all the difference to the final look and feel of the piece.

     The other information that we picked up during our workshop was that Brocante Home has just opened a small outpost in DéCOR, the design center in Carytown!  For now, Brocante’s floorspace is mostly Annie Sloan’s Chalk Paint, but the shop has plans to expand as room becomes available in this wonderful design haven.  Several local designers have set up small shops within these walls, and Brocante Home is the perfect addition.  Rachel also plans to be on-site on Wednesdays so that she can answer customers’ questions about the chalk paint.

     Now you have no excuse to postpone your own furniture transformations.  The paints are nearby, as is the expertise.  Plus the paints are so easy to use that you can just set up a workshop in your living room just like this Avad Fan.

     Happy Painting!

Mark Your Calendars for this Fall’s Edition of The Ivy Market

     The Ivy Market returns next week, October 9th and 10th, at the University of Richmond’s Jepson Alumni Center.

     It looks like a couple of new vendors have been added to the line-up of unique boutiques.  Collard Greens is an eco-friendly but preppy mostly men’s clothing line.

I wonder if anyone on my shopping list would love this pig bowtie as much as I do?

     Lindsay Cowles is one of my favorite local artists.

A St. Catherine’s graduate, Lindsay is always such a delight to talk to whenever I see her showing her captivating work.   Dubbed a “Design Genius” by popular design blog Sadie + Stella, Lindsay and her nature-inspired oils will be a wonderful addition to The Ivy Market.

     I am also looking forward to seeing some of my favorite vendors’ latest offerings.

Lori Daniel Rowland‘s new wrap bracelets with rhinestone button closures look fabulous.  The Ivy Market is definitely the place to update your look with some new accessories.

     With donations being accepted at the door for ASK, The Ivy Market provides the perfect combination:  great shopping for an even greater cause.  Make plans to put on your cute shoes, and get your holiday shopping started next Tuesday and Wednesday.

‘Tis the Season

for pre-ordering Christmas cards on sale.

     September 15th is here, and I’ve only got another half of the month to plan and order this year’s Christmas card if I want to get the September discount.  How can it possibly be time to start thinking about the holidays?  I haven’t even downloaded the pictures from our summer vacation to sunny Southern California yet.

     Oh, well.  Since time marches on, I’d better march myself over to One Thing at a Time inside the Shops at 5807 to see what’s new in the way of greeting card fashions.  I am looking forward to seeing the holiday offerings from Lallie’s new and more affordable SoNancy line.

     In between searching the vacation pics for a decent card photo, I’ve got to start making my lists, so I can check them twice.  Does the thought of the holidays bring you joy or make you feel more like the Grinch?  Maybe if I really do plan ahead and get organized now, December will be jolly.

Your Invitation to The Ivy Market

     You cannot ignore such a beautiful invitation, so mark your calendars for this biannual show.  As I have mentioned before here and here, my friend Andrea has created quite the fundraising event for the The Tad DuPriest Foundation and ASK, two local organizations that help to improve the lives of children battling cancer, and this Avad Fan always looks forward to attending.  If you are in Richmond, this Tuesday or Wednesday, May 1-2, 2012, you will not want to miss The Ivy Market.  Hope to see you there!

Enter Blogoversary Giveaway Now for Nest “Blue Garden” Candle: a Fabulous Find from Thistles

     You have only 2 days left to enter Avad Fan’s 1st Blogoversary giveaway.  The Nest “Blue Garden” candle not only provides a fabulous scent for your home, it also supports an important cause.  Net profits from its sales go to Autism Speaks,the nation’s largest autism science and advocacy organization, dedicated to funding research into the causes, prevention, treatments and a cure for autism.

     To enter the contest, all that you have to do is

  1. Leave a comment below;
  2. Subscribe to Avad Fan using the box in the upper right hand corner; or
  3. If you are already a subscriber, tell me that when you leave your comment.

These rules give each entrant up to two chances to win this candle.  This prize can only be shipped to addresses in the United States and Canada.  Entries will only be accepted until Saturday, April 21, 2012 at 12 noon EDT.

     If you don’t win this luscious candle, you can pick it up at one of my new favorite stores here in the West End:  Thistles.  While the store is not new (it has been in its location on Libbie Avenue since before I moved to Richmond over 25 years ago), I had not visited for many years.  When I stopped by last week in search of this candle, I feel in love with pretty much everything the store carries in its little 3-room shop:  lots of unique and high-quality leather, housewares and even sun hats.  I had to hold myself back, but I now have a trove of new gift ideas in the back of my mind and look forward to returning soon.

     If you don’t live in Richmond, you still have access to Thistles’ high-quality inventory through its


You can even get gifts monogrammed through this site (you know this Avad Fan loves a good monogram.)  If you haven’t already, you’ve got to discover Thistles.

     In the meantime, please enter the giveaway, and good luck!