Saturday, December 20, 2008

Christmas Wish

As my daughter and I were watching the snow fall from the dining room window today, I felt several was just a few things to grump about.

1. I was angry that my plow guy had not come yet

2. I was thinking how we would pay the plow guy 30$ today another 30$ on Sunday and another 30$ on Thursday and the weather man had no good news in the near future.

3. I wondered where it would be this time. My yearly fall. I don't try to fall every year...but like clock work, I fall every single year.

For the next 2 minutes, my mind wandered to several other things at once, "I am out of stuffing for the pillows", "I need to work on some Valentine display pieces", "I really need to get on that treadmill soon", "Christmas Cards!! Mail them before it is too late!" "how many more Christmas presents do I need to get?" , "where will I go??", heart started racing to the point I could not stand in that spot one more second. As I was turning to leave, I saw my daughters face. She was still looking outside and...smiling. Her eyes sparkled and her face was so genuinely happy. With all my worrying and internal complaining, I almost missed one of the most beautiful memories of my life. She looked up at me and whispered, "It's Christmas, Maman".

I think 2008 has been a difficult year for most people, for one reason or another. The recession, expectations,...the ice storm--oy!. Typically, people adapt and bounce right back. But as we get older, we may feel the springs may be getting weaker...because they are not bouncing back so quickly anymore. Problems are a season in life--it is not forever and, eventually, the problems will pass. But, time is not friendly and while we sit and worry about tomorrow, today is already passing.

When I asked my daughter what her Christmas wish was this year she said, "I wish everyone could be happy and not sad and that snow was a warm blanket I could cover up in!"

That was mine too.

Wishing you a peaceful Christmas/Holiday and a new beginning in 2009.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Christmas Is Coming!!!

Christmas is coming!!!
--and I dont know if those exclamation points are for excitement or panic!-lol

Well November came and went and it was a busy time at KAZA, preparing for the upcoming Holidays, making new pillows, candles, Christmas decorations and other crazy things.

We changed the windows for Christmas and really wanted to have some fun with them this year. I loved last years windows "Aspen Christmas" and "Mod Silver"--but "Whoville" and "The Christmas Story" are so dear to my heart and are very tongue in cheek....which is so KAZA anyway. Aimee & Julianne gave us a hand, wrapping all the garland with ornaments for the "Whoville" window. Thank God! That window took us almost 5 hours.

The Artist Reception for Bev Norton went very well and she sold quite a few pieces of her work. Bev's work will be displayed until 11 December and she also has added some of her paintings, which have received alot of attention. Her paintings are light in spirit and refreshing and worth seeing in person. Congratulations Bev! :)

I had the radio interview with Designer, Bridget Mellow of Decorating Dilemma's radio show and was able to bring my daughter, so she could see what it was all about. My GPS gave me wrong directions and we were literally racing up the stairs to make it in time--oy! It was alot of fun though. I learned a bit about myself in the process--I laugh WAY to much when I am nervous, I talk with my hands ALOT and that I raised a crazy daughter! At the end of the interview, Bridget asked my daughter, "what is the best part of your mom having a shop?"--she said, "I get to steal sometimes!" (she means the soap and seashells, but double oy!). Other than that, it was alot of fun. I mean, talking to Bridget on air or off air is always a bit crazy--she is such a hoot! Thanks Bridget for the opportunity and for thinking of KAZA. To listen to the interview: (Archives November 2008)

I have been busy making pillows, more candles (just came out with "Acapulco with Cary Grant"-I know, I know), Christmas Tree's made with designer fabric (which....have already sold and I will need to make more before the Season ends) and sparkly Eiffel Towers! I have been sparkling everything these days. It is my new favourite thing.

We also brought in some new inventory from Japan & Mexico--I love the simplicity and tranquility of the Japanese pieces and the vibrancy of the Mexican pieces.

A few weeks ago, an artist named Michael came in and asked to draw one of our fabulous birdhouses. I thought it would be kind of fun for people to see him at work while they shop. He is very talented, so kind and is someone I can speak french with! :) Merci Michael!

Also!! Artist, Elizabeth Cohen of Boston has graced our shop with her fabulous pottery and painted bowls...ummmm...did I mention they are FABULOUS?? What a sweet woman and an extreme talent. I was so glad to meet someone Kookier than me!! We had such a good time and were brainstorming ideas and will definately colloborate some of art. Well...her art...with my....hobby (lol). Can't wait for you all to see!
Check out her website:

So....that's about it. more thing. If you have read this far, you really deserve a bonus. Starting today 3 December 2008 - 26 December 2008, all customers will recieve a trial size KAZA Facial Steam---FREE! with every purchase. (while supplies last)

Merry Christmas! ~ Joyeux Noel! ~ Mutlu Yillar!

Monday, November 10, 2008

Abstract Photographer, Bev Norton-Artist Reception

Artist Reception for Abstract Photographer, Bev Norton
-20 November 2008 4pm-7pm!

Enjoy cheese, crackers, wine and hot cider, meet the artist, do some Christmas shopping and save 20% off your purchase at KAZA!! (-20% excludes artwork..sorry).

A bit about Bev:
Bev is a self-taught artist who has been working in textiles, beading & pottery for most of her life. For the last 5 years Bev has been painting on textiles to create "naive" art. Out of more than 150 paintings painted since 2003, 20 have sold Nationally & Internationally. Bev is currently photographing profusely and sharing at flickr: "BN catchesthelight" & "catchesthelight". In 2007, Bev launched her abstract digital photo paintings in limited editions, preferrably by subscription. Bev also has a wonderful home workspace, gallery shop to share & exhibit for sales.

Where did the name "Catches the light" come from? Some of the acrylics I use from my experimenting with garment painting have mica in them so now my paintings have a small amount of light-catching quality. Because of all this emphasis on light, I have chosen the name "catches-the-light"

What inspires your photography?: I have honed my own techniques, explored some latent interests and seen what others are doing in photography to the extent that I am finding I love the relationship between the organic and inorganic in its purest abstract forms of light, line, texture, color and design. My abstract digital photography explores those relationships in such a visual way with themes that I love: travel, transportation, streamline moderne design, rust, petroliana.

Have you always been interested in Art?: I have always loved textiles. My Mom sewed me Barbie and baby doll clothes so one of my favorite things to do was to walk through a fabric store touching and imagining the possibilities. I designed some of my own dresses and some for my Barbie as a child but I always needed to find patterns for Mom to do the actual sewing since she wanted perfection. I wove those textile loop potholders as a child. I learned to knit, crochet and designed my own hooked rugs that I found therapeutic to punch away on.
In middle school, I enjoyed my Intro. to Art classes and especially the potter's kick wheel so much so that I bought the parts to build my own that was installed in our basement. I also liked to hand build pottery pieces and I took those to fairs as a teenager. In high school, I worked on a complete set of dinnerware out of pottery for my housekeeping days soon to arrive. But even then I wasn't content to just throw or form clay into forms, I also experimented with adding metal to the rim of my dinnerware and getting just the right temperatures and colors to complete my experiment. I like the combination of materials especially organic colors and textures with just a small amount of light-catching medium and this is where I attribute that love emerging. I took a design course in high school art as well and I did a large "mural" for our cafeteria wall shelf unit that showed citrus shapes, cross-sections, etc. in a pattern that could only be seen fully straight on but you could see elements of it emerging from the sides as you passed it. I also enjoyed my TV production course in high school where I produced a video on the history of our local railroad service in the Pioneer Valley of MA.
Right out of high school I married where my creativity was tried with a meager married college students' income: I baked all my own bread, painted my own walls, utilized all my various and numerous "ideas" to make life work.

Artist Reception for Bev Norton is 20 November 2008 4-7pm

Friday, October 24, 2008

October at KAZA

Alot is going on here at KAZA, and it has taken me so long to organize my thoughts enough to write about it all.

Well, first: The Artist Reception for Matt Vesci(2 October 2008) went really really well. I was very happy so many people turned out to see his work and show support for his first Art Exibit. There is Canadian heritage in Matt's wifes family and it really became a sort of "Soiree Canadienne"--seriously alot of fun. Growing up in Canadian household, it felt like home! All we missed was a little bit of Edith Butler and spoons!!

After Matt took his beautiful artwork down, Bev Norton brought hers in. Meeting Bev has been great--what a talent this woman has! She has so many different creative outlets, it was really difficult to choose what would be shown at KAZA first. Because of the season, I chose her Abstract Photography. There is something in her work that effects my soul. Her inspiration? Rusted metals, peeling paints....very organic and absolutely stunning. I will do a more expanded posting on her artwork in next week, along with some pictures of her work. It really is a pleasure to have her work here

The window: I know, I know...I am so late with this posting. But, just so you know,I have slapped every hand that has reached into that new window personally.(Joking!).
Well, the pink chair came in in time for Breast Cancer Awareness Month. I had wanted to do something special this month and finding that pink chair and those darling little pink sequined pillows just seemed like the right choice. I felt the chair may look a little formal for typical KAZA style, so I had to add the massive disco ball and lucite and mirrored table to lighten it up. I love the combination of formal and funky!



Pink velvet tufted chair: $85.00
Pink Sequined Pillows: $20.00 each (2 available)
Vintage Lucite Table Base (also can be used as a funky mag rack): $50.00
Black Syrocco End Tables: Large 25$ / Small 15$
Creme Vases: Range from $17.50- $25.00
Mercury Glass Vase: 25$
Fabulous Moravian Star: 95$
Disco Ball: 65$

On another note, we hired two girls to work some weekends at KAZA; Julianne and Aimee. FABULOUS girls! Aimee is a student designer (soon to graduate from NHIA!) with a passion for green design and is also a part of the KAZA Design Team.

Speaking of Julianne, she found an article featuring some of the Bulgarian pieces we carry in October 2008 Elle Decor! Which made me investigate a bit further about where else, the pieces we carry, are recently featured.


October 2008 Elle Decor: Chocolate Troyan pottery from Bulgaria
March 2008 Gourmet Magazine: Turnavo Pottery From Bulgaria (Nikolai Yovkov)
Fall 2008 Pierre Deux: (French) Pottery
October Elle Decor front Cover: Hummingbirds Cole & Sons Fabric on two of our chairs & pillows(in creme

Sooooo....I thought that was cool enough to share with y'all! :)

On another subject....I made Candles and Facial Steams! The facial steams are made up of organic lavender, rosemary, wild mint and clover picked from the vast fields of my families land in Canada. I have been steaming since I was 12 years old and love how refreshed I feel afterwards.

And the candles: I call them, "A glass of milk at the beach"--my attempt to be all artsy and name it, I guess~lol. But I chose a white colour and a seaside scent. And the fabulous vintage, boomerang glasses were such a great find, I HAD to make them into candles! A set of 3 different sizes sell for 20$, but are priced individually. There is a limited amount and they are selling like hotcakes! :)

And finally! Designer Bridgette Mellow came into the shop the other day and asked KAZA to be a guest on her radio show, "Decorating Dilemma's" , 18 November 2008--on WKXL 1450AM. I am a little bit nervous and when I am nervous, my French mother comes out of my mouth (not literally!!) and I cannot speak english (OR French, for that matter) anymore!!-lol--we'll see.....listen in, it may be VERY entertaining! :)

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Photographer Matt Vesci- Artist Reception

Artist Reception Thursday, 2 October 2008 4pm-7pm
Enjoy Art, Cheese, Crackers, Wine and a bit of shopping
(shoppers at Reception get a 20% discount shop wide!
(excluding artwork, of course)

KAZA is proud to display the works of Art Photographer, Matt Vesci.
Matt recently graduated from NHIA's (New Hampshire Institute Of Art)Photography program. As a student (even after my 1 yr absence--I vow to return!)at NHIA, I know first-hand the quality of students that graduate from NHIA and Matt is no exception. Matt offers a wide range of photographs which, I feel, gives insight into his creative mind. The natural settings draw you in, allowing a moments escape.

A bit more about Matt:

The Artist:
Matt Vesci is a graduate of New Hampshire Institute of Art’s Certificate program in Photography, where he focused on landscapes, both in color and black & white, with a special interest in the handmade processes of the nineteenth century.

About Matt's prints:
Color photos are printed, using archival papers and inks. The colors in these photographs will last longer than those in a conventional color film print. Under glass, they should last 50 to 100 years if kept out of direct sunlight, and are said to last 200 years if kept in the dark. (I haven’t been able to verify this, since I haven’t been around that long, and it’s always more fun to be able to look at these photographs!)

The black and white images are a combination of conventional black & white photography, printed in the darkroom on “modern” silver gelatin papers, digital “giclee” photos, made on the same Epson printers as the color work and finally my favorites, the handmade processes…salt prints and platinum/palladium prints.

The Procedure:
The handmade prints are my favorite final prints. They are the result of a much more labor intensive method than the traditional black & white and/or color digital. Both the Salt and Palladium print processes must be contact printed, meaning that the negative is the same size as the final photograph. These large negatives are created either by using a large format camera, to create the original 4 x 5” (or larger) negative, or by making a digital negative on the computer, with the proper characteristics for the specific process, then printing the photograph in the darkroom.

For either of my handmade processes, I begin with a plain piece of watercolor paper, which is very strong and has a high fiber content. I then mix the appropriate chemicals and coat the paper with either a brush or glass rod. For the Salt prints, there are two coatings, first a salt water solution, followed by a solution of silver nitrate after paper has dried. In creating the palladium prints, there is a combination of three chemicals. With both of these, only a small amount of coated paper can be created at a time, because the paper will darken within a few hours, if not processed, making it unuseable. Once the coated paper is dried, it is placed behind the negative, in a special wooden frame and exposed to an ultraviolet source. The photographers of the 1800’s used what is still the best, though most unpredictable source of UV light, the sun. I’ve opted to use modern ultraviolet lights, which are not as strong, but result in a predictable exposure.

The final palladium prints are a rich black, with some warm tones, and highlights that take the color of the base paper. Salt prints range from a reddish orange to a grayish-blue, depending on the exposure and whether or not toned in an additional chemical bath.

Overall, these processes are more time-consuming, but they provide a much more tactile experience, connecting me with the images, much as they did when I first discovered and recorded them in my camera

KAZA Artist Reception for Matt Vesci is Thursday, 2 October 2008 4pm-7pm
**Cheese, crackers and wine will be served**

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Busy Month At KAZA!!

WOW! What a busy month!

The Artist Reception was alot of fun--thanks Barbara Carr for allowing us to display your fabulous artwork and for being such a pleasure to work with--lets do it again soon!

The Sale went well and moved alot of inventory to make room for the fabulous new pieces.

Speaking of the fabulous new pieces....the shop reconfiguration!
We have gorgeous new pieces from Morocco, Bulgaria, France, Mexico, Spain, Italy, Tunisia and of course Turkey. All are fair traded, handpainted and simply gorgeous! The more primitive side has a more Gustavian influence (Swedish Farmhouse). With a palette of soft blue-greys and powdery taupes, pickled furnishings--it really creates a tranquil ambiance. The Artsy/Mid-Century
section is more colourful than ever as we continue to bring in more out-of-the-box home decor. We have been busy! :)

Ahh...yes...the windows. We were late on those this month (and heard about it from many people!!-lol). So, off to work, frantically making pillows and finding the correct pieces and voila! New windows!

The first window is a sort of Provencal style with the luxurious (and newly re-upholstered) antique chaise. It is just an exquisite piece. The palette for the pillows are soft browns, taupes and pinks all done in high quality designer fabrics. The creme iron "gates"are very heavy and are perfect for leaning (perhaps on a fireplace mantle?)--a simple window, because the chaise speaks for itself.

Chaise: $1200.00
Pillows: Small 10$, Medium 15$, Large 20$
Creme Iron "gates": 25$ each (3 available)

The next window is Mod and Fab! The mid-century Crisp white vinyl sofa is so gorgeous and the lines are incredible. Very sleek and retro. I filled them with our own colourful "Mod about Paris" pillows! And of course, our famous embroidery hoop divider--it is just too fab to only use once!

Mod White Sofa- 250$ (sold...first day. Sniff sniff...I am so sorry)
Pillows: Small 10$, Medium 15$ and Large $20

The white mod sofa will be replaced by something, hopefully equally funky, soon.

See you soon! :)

Friday, August 29, 2008

KAZA End Of Summer Sale

The end of summer?!?! Already?!?

I know, I know.....I cannot talk about it too much without getting watery eyed.

So, to deal with the trauma of school shopping, last times at the beach and cleaning the barbecue grill to move into storage to prepare for....oy...I just cannot say it.....

Well, all this is too much for anyone to deal with.
We need to have a sale!

Come join us at KAZA's End Of Summer Sale!
*25% off Store Wide Sale
effective 2 September-9 September 2008
(subscribers hear this news first!)

Hurry in, as the good stuff always goes first!
*sale excludes fabulous artwork by Barbara Carr--sorry.

Other than the fabulous artwork, nothing else is safe from this sale.
Think ahead for birthdays, housewarming, redecorating
and/or (gulp!) Christmas shopping.

We are making room for wonderful new pieces and are so excited to bring them in!

Some examples of what -25% looks like:

Large cowhide rugs
Typically $900.00 each/Now -25% =$675.00

Gorgeous Bronze Mosaic Lamp in the window
Typically $120.00/ Now - 25% =$90.00 SOLD

Place mat Pillows
Typically $15.00 each/ Now -25% =$11.25

Stunning Large Moroccan Vase
Typically $158.00/ Now -25% =$118.50

Eames Era Chrome and Black Chairs
Typically $75.00 each / Now $56.25 each

Vintage Mexican Mirrored Moravian Star
Typically $32.50 each /Now -25% =$24.37 each SOLD

KAZA store hours, during the sale are:

Saturday: 10am-2pm

Sunday & Monday CLOSED (unless there is a decorating emergency--then just call and I will open!) :o)

Tuesday-Friday 10am-6pm