Having been born and raised in Toronto and having walked miles (and kilometers) throughout and around the city, I have had ample opportunity to exercise my skill in the cement-jungle treasure-hunt: the art of finding hidden gems between the bricks of commercial institutions. Manhattan, however, is not familiar; it is a whole new landscape, and one that I have only recently decided to begin exploring. Luckily for me there are countless resources online to help lead me in the right direction.
One such lead pointed to Chelsea Market, an indoor market known for quality craft food and merchandise. As you stroll through the halls, you will be struck by the artistry and care that all of the stores within have put into their work. It is truly inspiring.
Within the market there is a temporary shop called ID Pop Shop, filled with artists and their wares. While browsing, I came across Verrier Handcrafted, the mother-daughter business of Ashleigh and Jude Verrier that expanded from designer fashion-wear to ‘papier designs.’ The fashion influence is clear, as the style of art is very chic, delicate, and detailed.
Their hand-crafted and colourful work covers both canvas and card, accented by dazzling, meticulously-applied sparkles to create a ‘light-hearted’ yet elegant impression. Some items are even adorned by quirky phrases such as “Champagne is always the answer,” and “She who leaves a trail of glitter will never be forgotten” (we all know this to be true, I think I still have glitter from Christmas lodged in my carpet).
The care put into their work was undeniable. As I browsed through their cards I thought about how many people I could send one to and feel as though I had given something that complimented the sincerity of the sentiments that I scribbled inside. A “Hallmark” isn’t the same as a handmade gift, even if it is not done by your own hand. That is, in essence, the beauty of crafts, is it not?
Their website is easy to navigate and the quality of the work that I saw was very good. A stream of people continuously flowed through their section and many people lined up to pay for handfuls of cards and larger prints. Overall it was a very good find and I’m glad I wandered into the market that day.
I have only scratched the surface and will continue to scour for local artisans to share with you all!