Sunday, October 12, 2014

Letters in 3-D

I don't know how many of you remember this photo from a post back in March of this year.

How many of you noticed the blue letters, L and T, on the wall on the left? Did any of you make the connection with my initials ("Lynne" and "Tyler")?  And if you got that far, did you think, "OMG, what an egotist?"

Well, that's not it.  Let me tell you the story.

I started working for the Felton Brush Company almost 26 years ago.  When I started, the company was located in an old mill building. The building was well over 100 years old, and over time it got to be too expensive to maintain, so in 1998, the company decided to build a new building in a different location. The old building would be demolished.

Since Felton had been in that building over fifty years, the owners knew the workers would have a lot of emotional ties with the building. They asked the workers what we wanted. Almost all of us had the same answer: "We want a picture of everybody in front of the building."

So one autumn day a professional photographer came by and organized the photo shoot that led to the photo below.  The photographer was high on a stepladder across the street to get the photo.

I'm standing in front of the building. (There are about fifteen of us in the photo who are still with the company today.)

The new building was built over the winter, and we moved in one weekend in March of 1999.  The manufacturing departments had moved into the new building, and the offices would be packing up on Friday. The riggers would move everything on Saturday. On Sunday we were paid to go to the new building and set up our work areas. We'd start business in the new building on Monday.

On Thursday, the president of the company asked me, "Lynne, would you like a brick from the building as a souvenir?"

"I don't want a brick. A brick is dumb."

He laughed. I was well known for my frankness. "Well think of something. You can have whatever you want."

I couldn't think of anything.

The next day, I was driving up the street, and I looked at the building. An idea popped into my head. I knew just what I wanted.

I walked directly to the president's office. I didn't even stop by my work area or take off my coat. "You said I could have ANYTHING?" I asked.

"Name it."

"Can I have the letter L from the sign?"

"It's yours."

Two days later I walked into my new workspace in the new building to find not just the L from the sign, but the T as well.  I brought them home, painted them a pretty blue and hung them up in my living room. When I paint my front door hot pink, I'll paint these two letters the same pink, and hang them on the porch wall.

There is a large copy of the photograph in our new building. When guests visit, they all ask about the photo. I tell the story about the letters. "Wow," my guests always say. "That's a great story."

I smile, and I agree.

And the letters are a LOT better than a brick.


sophie said...

What a great story ... and cool letters :-)

Marina Louw said...

Such lovely memories - Thanks for sharing with us!

Pat said...

What fun! Those letters will be pretty in pink and so "you". :D

Quiltdivajulie said...

Love this story (and I had not seen the mill building photo).

Vicki W said...

What a great story!

Derby, Ducky said...

Very cool, mum has a coffee table made from a leaded glass window that was in a house she once lived in. The house was being taken down and mum had Grampie go rescue the window for her.

Megan said...

Great story. I was interested that the old building wasn't thought 'historic' and worth of preservation by the community at large.

Sydney, Australia

Dee W said...

When the store I managed closed, we were the end of the line for the name. They took the sign off the front of the storefront and we took it into the store. A customer who had that last name asked for it and we sent it home with him. He was thrilled. I got the store name sign that hung over the cashwrap that I'd help hang when we remodeled. My friends signed it for me.

Sandi said...

Looks like this will be a great working space to create your quilts in. Lovely views for inspiration and contemplation. Enjoy.

Sandi said...

Art...I was looking at your redesign post and went to look at your old layout and read your letters post. I love the story and your photos of your old work place. How lucky to get those letters.

Jodi said...

Hi there! I just stumbled onto your blog from, somewhere, hmmm, and am having fun reading this and that. Love your "Life is Tweet" quilt, and the view from your studio! I, too, live in New England and love autumn. What fun your son's wedding must have been! He does look like an old-time movie star :-)

Jodi said...

Hi there! I just stumbled onto your blog from somewhere, not sure where, and am having fun looking at this and that. Love your "Life is Tweet" quilt, and the view from your studio. I, too, live in New England, Rhode Island, to be exact, and I love autumn and all the prettiness. Millie is so sweet - I miss my two cats and two dogs! looking forward to "following" you.

Jodi said...

Hi there! I stumbled onto your blog from somewhere out there in blogland. having fun looking at this and that. Love your "Life is Tweet" quilt, and the view from your studio! I, too, live in New England, Rhode Island, to be exact. I love the autumn beauty. Looking forward to "following" you.