Apron Strings at apronology

I often pinch myself in disbelief that a love of aprons has for twelve years now brought into my life such bounty of storytelling, aprons, friendships and the opportunities to share that journey.

In October, I was the guest of the Santa Barbara area’s quilt guild (another story to share in an upcoming blog). There I met-up with Jini Burkholder and her very agreeable husband/chauffeur Dean. We’d first crossed paths earlier in the year when I was speaking in Farmington, NM. Jini prevailed on Dean to drive from their home in Phoenix to meet me, share her apron collection and a unique piece of sewing history (another blog story!).

I share this preamble because Dean drove Jini and me to Laguna to meet Beth Livesay, editor of apronology. And then he stayed and took all the photos and videos you’re about to see. What a guy!

Here we are in the lobby of Stampington & Company: Beth Livesay, ea and Jini

1_Introductions in the lobby [800x600]

Extra hugs as Beth and I marvel we’re finally meeting after three years of emailing

1_ea and Beth meet [800x600]

The Stampington operation is spread out among several facilities. Following Beth from one building to the next, we walked through a narrowing corridor, which struck me as a Canyon of Creativity:

apron*ology tour_Canon of Creativity

Everywhere you look are stacks, shelves, and racks of inspiration and submissions2_Racks of inspiration and submissions are everywhere [800x600]

Offices line the many corridors. My head spun like that poor girl in the Exorcist! Doorways like this one just enchanted – that’s a dress constructed of paper

3_Amanda's office [800x600]

With Beth’s encouragement, we walked on into this office and met Amanda Crabtree, editor of Belle Armoire. Amanda’s greeting was of such warmth, which I quickly learned is the “Stampington Way.” I just knew this visit was going to be a special time indeed.

4_Amanda Crabtree_editor Belle Armoire [800x600]

Along the corridor of editors’ offices is this wall sculpture with a timeless quote by Coco Chanel

5_Coco Inspiration [800x600]

Each office is like a snowglobe – an environment a-jumble with creative stimuli that’s specific to the creative spirit of the editor. This office belongs to Christen Olivarez, editor-in-chief and director of publishing. To fit the picture to this page, I had to crop the overflowing tables and stacks of inspiration lining the walls. I loved this space

6_Christen Olivarez_ office [800x600]

Christen returned to her office as I was still oohing and carrying on about the filtered light from the windows, and in the “Stampington manner,” allowed for a photo so y’all might see just who oversees dozens of art-centric publications

7_Christine Olivarez  [800x600]

Submissions to various magazines are displayed on tables and racks for editors’ consideration. This jewelry was awaiting aSmile or Crying faceverdict

8_checking out jewelry submissions for a magazine [800x600]

Anyone who has sent off a creation of (he)art knows the anxiety of concern and whether they will ever see it again. Submissions to the magazines of Stampington arrive daily and someone with an eye to detail records their intake and caretakes their return. That person of he(art) is Michelle Nolan 9_Michelle Nolan caretaker of submissions [800x600]

Even the wall space surrounding the copy machine is a canvas of expression – wallpapered with the magazines’ covers (note to self – do this with vintage magazine covers!)

10_Wallpaper in copy room [800x600]

On her way to a meeting with Christen, Stampington’s publisher, Kellene Giloff, stopped to introduce herself. Kellene started Stampington as an outlet to share her love of stamping. That single publication has grown to dozens! Kellene is a dedicated, hands-on publisher, and many careers have been nurtured through her example of hard work. Beth spoke of her 11_Kellene Giloff_Stampington publisher [800x600]

admiration of Kellene in this video – which has us multi-tasking (walking and talking) on our way to lunch

Beth shares her joy of her job at Stamington