Philes & Ists gallery
E·phem·er·ist n. A person who collects ephemera (items designed to be useful for only a short time, especially pamphlets, notions, tickets, stationary, etc.)
I work part time as the “nimble shop assistant” to Bari Zaki, a custom bookbinder. She surrounds herself in a world of the most beautiful books, delicate Japanese papers, thousands of different colored pencils, and boxes of letters and postcards. She collects all sorts of lovely papery things, but the most unique of them all is her collection of hotel stationary. One day she let me look through her large stack of stationary. As I riffled through, she would tell me stories of where in the world each piece was from, who gave it to her, or how she sometimes had to pilfer one or two sheets and envelopes from the hotels front desk.
Phi·lat·e·list n. One who collects or studies postage stamps.
Charles Berg is the owner of a small shop near Park Ridge called Stamp King, where he sells vintage stamps. As a massive letter and postcard writer myself, I decided to go check out his shop last summer. The King of Stamps, with his little waxed mustache, always tells me odd stories about different old stamps when I go. I also loved to observe the flock of characters that wander into his little stamp kingdom. There are the intense collectors discussing the specific color and variety of a particular stamp; and then there are the friends who stop by to chat. The Irish priest, the cop, the post woman, and old friends all chit chatting, crammed amongst the stacked boxes full of stamps.
Cer·am·i·cist n. One who makes ceramic objects and artwork.
This summer my dad and my uncle are undertaking the great challenge of digitizing the hundreds of old family photos and slides. When he first started, my dad was so excited he made my mother, brother, and me all sit to watch a slide show of what they had done so far. All of the photos depicted life in the early 1960’s in the small farming town of Carol Iowa. We all liked the photos of the older women in great dresses and fabulously arranged grey hair. My favorite slide depicted a farmer’s wife named May Emory showing off her collection of the ugliest ceramics I’ve ever seen. She was posing at some kind ofparty, while other guest were milling about clearly not interested in the least.
An·glo·phile n. a person who is fond of or greatly admires England or Britain
In may I attended a breakfast viewing party to watch the royal wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. I loved looking around at the people who where there and the decorations. Mothers and sleepy daughters watching a royal wedding for the first time, older women sporting fancy hats comparing the even to when they watched princess Diana’s wedding, or even when they listened to Queen Elizabeth’s wedding on the radio.
Each table at the party had a single mug that commemorated the various life events of the British royal family. They were all so fabulous; I compliment the hostess on her fun decorations. She told me that the mugs were a part of her anglophile mother-in-law’s collection. Later that day the mugs were delivered to my house to peruse to my hearts content.