Oh. My. God. It’s happened again.
I took the afternoon to do some harmless boutique schlopping (that’s shopping/schlepping, k?) around parts of Dallas that generally remain pretty far west of my usual stomping grounds; namely, Inwood Plaza and Snider Plaza. (I missed a few more plazas, like Preston Center and Highland Park, but I’m saving those for another day) Despite the main MAIN reason of jump-starting my imagination and energy level while taking advantage of the lack of road congestion (and unexpected by-product of Spring Break! Yeah, Mexico!), the main idea was to learn what new boutiques existed around Dallas that weren’t around five, ten, twenty-odd years ago. To me, those boutiques of yore seemed to exist in much greater numbers (not too surprising, thanks to existing prior to online- everything and super high commercial real estate) They were owned by high-energy, often eccentric gals who had ideas of their own about what to show in their shops – and would often give a local artist a chance to show their work on a consignment basis. (I know this because I was one of those artists!)
Knowing that these type of stores have slid mostly by the wayside, I still sallied forth hoping that in the well-paved, monied parts of Dallas there might lurk an undiscovered glittery mushroom, harboring a fairie-godmother with my name on her. One who seemed capable of liking my slightly weird, one of kind handmade creations and would give me a chance.
It’s not that they don’t have beautiful jewelry – they do! I just didn’t feel like they would be open to new designers. Maybe I am being overly negative and need to push myself to do a pitch; I suppose the only thing that will hurt will be my pride (and it will hurt, soooo much!)
I did have fun and discovered some beautiful shops with lovely things, from designers all over the country, including an in-house jeweler. I also enjoyed the undivided attention of one very knowledgeable young salesperson who seemed to have the right balance of enthusiasm and ability to listen. These are rare qualities in sales-folk anymore. (you might say I am being unkind, but this is my opinion and I can back it up with years of my own retail accessories experience. It’s a special person who has a genuine interest in the making process as well as the human touch. Usually you’re lucky to get one or the other.)
After such a lovely visit, I made the mistake of floating on jewelry dreams into one last accessory shop; it was one in a chain of such shops, and the salesperson was so bored I felt like I might have interrupted a nap. She was kind and chipper enough; but when I thanked her to take my leave, she responded with a “thank you, Ma’am.” If the drizzle and rain hadn’t dampened my spirits enough – that did the trick.
Just in case you’re in retail or you sell to others in any capacity, I would just like to say, “Never use ma’am. It ages women no matter how old they are. Better to use the sweet, southern gentile phrase, *dear.*”
It might sound overly douty or weird, but almost everyone likes to think they are someone’s dear; even men.
Thanks for reading; and have yourself a nice evening, dear.