Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Still Here

And staying busy! Check out my new project, a podcast about knitting and life in Meadows of Dan.

Greenberry House,
12206 Squirrel Spur Road,
Meadows of Dan, VA 24120
Hours: 10 AM to 5 PM Saturday to Tuesday
April to mid-November.
Closed except by appointment or chance.,Mid-November to End of March

Friday, July 17, 2015

Down Down the Mountain

Down Down the Mountain by Ellis Credle
This lovely illustrated book for children is my absolute favorite of all the books we have in stock here at the shop. It's a sweet story, set in the Blue Ridge Mountains and was heralded when it was first published in 1934 as "the first picturebook ever done of the Blue Ridge country." The simple tale  of Down Down the Mountain follows the fortunes of two mountain children who set to work, on the advice of their grandmother, to grow turnips so that they can each buy themselves their first pair of shoes. They then travel down the mountain to sell their product and have adventures along the way.

Ellis Credle, a native of North Carolina born in 1902, used the experiences of her childhood and stories from her time as a teacher in the Blue Ridge Mountains as well as traditional tales from North Carolina for plots for her books for children. Her first successful title, Down Down the Mountain, led to the publication of several other books with similar themes. She struggled with a few career setbacks and some of her earlier stories are criticized for their negative portrayal of African Americans but her later work is praised by some for its authentic portrayal of life in the rural South for African Americans in the 1930s.

The story is lovely in Down Down the Mountain, with an elegant moral and a fun plot twist at the end. But the artwork of this book lifts it out of the ordinary scope of books for children and makes it something special. The two-color pictures have an easy style that captures the setting and portrays the people of the mountain with dignity and respect. There is a lot of fun in the pictures and I think adults will be as enchanted as their children with this lovely work.

Greenberry House, 12206 Squirrel Spur Road, Meadows of Dan, VA 24120 Hours: 10 AM to 5 PM Thurs. to Mon. April to mid-November. Closed except by appointment or chance. Mid-November to End of March

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

The Purple Parasol by George Barr McCutcheon

The Purple Parasol by George Barr McCutcheon
The Purple Parasol by George Barr McCutcheon, published by A. L. Burt, 1907, Reprint with the Harrison Fisher illustrations.

When an elderly millionaire marries an elegant young woman about town, scandal erupts when she falls for a fashionable play actor. She tells her husband she is going to the mountains for a rest, and it's the straw that breaks the old man's back when he discovers that the lover is heading for the heights as well. Samuel W. Rossiter, Jr., promising young lawyer, is sent to the Adirondacks to get the "evidence" on the wayward lady. Trouble is, he has never laid eyes on the woman or her lover, but the description he is given relies heavily on the fact that she carries a purple parasol. The resulting comic chase is as charming as it is antic.

George Barr McCutcheon (1866 - 1928) was an imaginative writer and considered a member of the Golden Age of Indiana literature, joining the ranks of leading Hoosier authors including Lew Wallace, Booth Tarkington, James Whitcomb Riley and Theodore Dreiser. McCutcheon invented a country in Europe he called Graustark and he wrote several popular novels set in this enchanting realm. The Graustark novels and his other works led to his identification as a romantic writer, but McCutcheon preferred to be thought of as a playwright. His best known novel, Brewster's Millions, has repeatedly been made into movies.

Although The Purple Parasol is an old-fashioned novel, it is fast paced and the writing stands the test of time. Stepping back into a world where telegraphs are the swiftest means of communication and a train to the mountains is the elegant getaway (for a month!) of the well-to-do, the story is refreshing in its simplicity, has a good plot and a fun twist before the romantic end. The novel is short; there is a second story in this volume called The Flyers. The copy available for sale at Greenberry House is handsomely bound and is illustrated with color plates by Harrison Fisher, who was a well-known artist and involved in the discovery of Clara Bow, the "It-Girl."

Greenberry House, 12206 Squirrel Spur Road, Meadows of Dan, VA 24120 Hours: 10 AM to 5 PM Thurs. to Mon. April to mid-November. Closed except by appointment or chance. Mid-November to End of March

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

OPEN in Our New Location!

Back home at last in the little mountain cottage on the farm
It took longer than I hope but less effort than I thought but now Greenberry House is open at my sweet little cottage on the family farm on Squirrel Spur Road in Meadows of Dan. The yarn is displayed, the book shelves are filling up and there are so many unique vintage gifts and specialty crafts that I can't begin to list them. Here's hoping a picture conveys a thousand words!

Bargain book room!
On sale! Coned yarns for weaving, crocheting or knitting.
Occasionally I've thought I should change the name of the shop to the "It's probably here somewhere" bookstore!

And of course, there is yarn. Beautiful yarns created by local artisans.
Amazing wool and other fibers from local Virginia and North Carolina farmers.
Original hand made designs and wonderful vintage collectibles.
100% American cotton dishcloths and unique vintage gifts.
Delightful little toy cars, made in Italy, and still more unique collectible and hand made items.
Greenberry House, 12206 Squirrel Spur Road, Meadows of Dan, VA 24120 Hours: 10 AM to 5 PM Saturday through Tuesday. April to mid-November. Closed except by appointment or chance. Mid-November to End of March

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Closed for the Season

Greenberry House is closed for the season but I'm going to be busy all winter setting up the new shop. Come see me in April!

Greenberry House
12206 Squirrel Spur Road
Meadows of Dan, VA 24120
 Hours: 10 AM to 5 PM Saturday to Tuesday. 
 April to mid-November 
Closed except by appointment or chance 
Mid-November to End of March

Saturday, December 6, 2014

And In Other News...Yep, I'm Moving again.

Greenberry House, 12206 Squirrel Spur Road, Meadows of Dan, Virginia
I really, really, really hoped I wouldn't have to move the shop again. It's not good to be hopping around all over town with your business. People get too confused. But because of a very bad business decision on my part this past spring, I am going to have to return to my old farmhouse cottage with the Greenberry House Yarn and Vintage Gift Shop. This is a move from the shop that I shared with another store, which didn't work out. Moving into the old house makes me very happy. I love this old house and really enjoyed setting it up last summer as a shop. Now I get to do it all over again. I'm not sure I'm going to love the work as much but it will be wonderful when I'm settled!

The current shop is still open, although I've moved most of the books out and am working on getting the rest moved out in the next couple of weeks. The date to close for the season is December 20, but we'll be open on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, 10 AM to 5 PM, until then. I'll be looking forward to seeing you in the spring in my new/old home!

Saturday, June 7, 2014

Spinning and Setting Up Shop

Shetland wool dyed in deep purple shades and then hand spun
We have had a marvelously busy spring, setting up the new shop and spinning away the hours in the sunshine. I just finished three skeins of beautiful Shetland wool and posted it to the online shop this morning. Shetland is one of my favorite fibers and this lovely wool was a dream to spin. I'm not sure where the fleece came from but it was supplied by a local farmer. The picture doesn't do justice to the depth of color.

Tunis wool hand dyed and then spun, then Navajo plied.
This Tunis skein is part of a special order spinning project. I loved the colors when I carded up the batt and the customer, who is a great knitter, decided she would like me to spin some yarn. I really enjoyed working with this Tunis wool from a local farmer. I experimented with a long color progression this time, something I can't usually achieve with my dye techniques. There are three skeins, so if the customer doesn't buy all of them, I will be posting what is left for sale on the web site.

I hope to post some pictures soon of the new shop and how things are shaping up there, but come see us if you can!