Definitely not your average garage sale!
The artist studios at 3840 Finley Avenue, Santa Rosa will host their first Artists Garage Sale on Sunday, September 22, from noon to 4.
Artists at Studio Santa Rosa and 33Arts (in the former Naval base buildings aka “The Barracks” off Wright Road/Fulton Road) will sell off their no-longer-need art materials, tools, and supplies at bargain basement prices.
Organizer Luann Udell says, “Artists accrue quite a lot of stuff they never use in their creative process, especially mixed media artists. Our group is super excited to clear out space and pass these items on to a good home.”
Frames, brushes, paints, etc. will be some of the offerings, as well as artwork—older work, seconds, discontinued items, etc. New art, too!
But there will be a range of delightfully unusual items, too. Rubberstamps (and leather stamps, and metal alphabet sets), old dental tools, ugly pearls, vintage fabric, old wood and metal boxes, and more. Even the buildings’ managers are on board. “I have a lot of weird stuff to move!” says 33Arts manager Julian Billotte. His wife Anna chimed in, “Me, too!” The Studio Santa Rosa manager Greg Brown says, “Ditto!”
The event is free and open to all. Creatives, makers, artists, art teachers, art students, and art organizations are encouraged to attend, because….“We need you to buy this stuff so we have room to buy MORE stuff!”
Okay, that was my official announcement. Here’s my backstory:
Years ago, my friend Bonnie Blandford told me about an artist garage sale she’d started years go. (It’s still going!) The rules were strict: Only art supplies, materials, and tools the artists’ had used (or thought they were gonna use!) in their work. Also artwork: Seconds, discontinued items, damaged work, etc.
It was hugely successful, to the point where eventually, some artists had to take sabbaticals because they’d cleared out all their unwanted/unneeded stuff.) She went on to participate in an online version of this, at The Artist Garage Group on Facebook.
I was enchanted with the idea! I started one where I lived, in Keene NH. I found a large room at our public library, marked out spaces for each participant, and invited all the artists I knew to participate.
It was a lot of work. It was so much work, I didn’t have time to put together and label MY stuff! But it was also a huge success, and people begged me to do another one the next year.
Unfortunately, that was the year we sold off almost everything in our house, and moved to Santa Rosa California in 2014.
I recently moved my studio again, to 3840 Finley Avenue. I also had to clear out a space where I’d stashed my antique boxes, frames, and framing supplies.
I thought, “I could have an artist garage sale here!” I wouldn’t have to haul stuff to another venue, I could do it in the building.
Then I thought, “I wonder if anyone else here accumulates as much wonderful stuff as I do….?” Turns out, yeah, they do!
So we have around two dozen artists, maybe more, who will be unloading all kinds of useful, wonderful, quirky, eclectic stuff. (Turns out the two buildings’ managers are REALLY excited about this!)
Down the road, I hope to make this a more inclusive event. We have a lot of artists in Sonoma County, most of us have been making our creative work for a long time, and we’ve all accumulated a lot of flotsam and jetsom along the way. (Really nice flotsam and jetsom….!)
So come on down and see what you can find! Bring a friend or two, or six. I can almost guarantee you’ll find something you just can’t live without (because that’s what we thought when we got it.)
Reuse, repurpose, upcycle, and share. It’s good for us, it’s good for you, and it’s good for our planet. (And it’ll be fun, too!)