Saturday, April 12, 2008
Goodbye, Karla's Place
Today is the final day that one of my favorite Holland shops, Karla's Place, will be open for business. If you haven't been there and can make it downtown today, it is on College, just up from Roxie's Vintage. Go there to see Karla and wish her well. It will be worth the trip.
Karla's shop is painted warm colors, reds and pinks that reflect the warmth of the owner. Her shop is filled with things that were made by other people and her reverance for artistry and originality are evident everywhere. As a proprietor, Karla is an advocate for artists: everyone from high-profile crafters and artisians to a young girl of about 12 who was selling her earrings to buy a puppy. Now, Karla is moving toward listening to her own artist's voice and making time to make things. Of course, this is letting go, jumping off the cliff, moving forward fully aware of the impermanence of all there is, and the futility of trying to get ground under our feet, no matter how we try.
I met Karla because my dear friend Mark Amenta told me about her, so I visited her shop. I bought a Tibetian singing bowl ringer for my phone there. Now, whenever my phone rings, I hear that beautiful sound, gently bringing me to awareness, a subtle nudge rather than a shrill demand for attention. That is how Karla is, too.
She emailed me and told me she was saving my favorite necklace for me, and she practically gave it away. As always, there is a story behind it, and the women who made it are pictured along with the necklace itself. As you can see, it is made of jade, boxwood, silver and pearls.
I went to Karla's with my dear Julie and it was the place she found the perfect gift for her sister Coralee--a beautiful cloth of green and brown.
I bought gifts for friends and children there.
Whenever I go there, she asks about Annie and her art career. She always remembers everything. After my surgery, I got a beautiful card from her.
Now, she is looking at taking her art and her wares out into the world, to other places, sharing her gift for putting people and beautiful things together. I wish her well and am happy that I will still be on her email list.
Things really don't have beginnings and ends, it seems. It is more a coming together, a separating, and then a coming together again, the familiar with the new, as life unfolds.
The thread that connects it all is love.