Inspiration – You’ll Find It in Florence

By Sandy Dale 
   I recently read an interview with four “minimalists.” Impressive as they were…I am not one. Granted, while clean, empty spaces might allow the muses to dance about in a creative mind, I need something a little more robust to inspire me. My studio/apartment is stuffed (some might say cluttered) from floor to ceiling with antiques, old picture frames, broken chairs and lots of funky stuff. I live in Florence, how can I resist? For a time, I felt guilty about my “collections,” but after being locked down with them, I realize how important and inspiring my stuff is in maintaining my humor and creativity.
   Inspiration can come from many sources. A fine piece of pottery you would find at Blue Spruce Arts and Antiques or Taylor’d Home inspires an appreciation of beauty and utility. The paintings by the many talented artists at Blue Spruce or the Bell Tower Cultural Center definitely inspire admiration of nature and give us a new perspective. Old machinery and antique tools found at the Pioneer Museum and at many of the shops were created out of necessity and now remind us of our history. My favorite inspiration comes from visiting Antique Warehouse, Florence & Cripple Creek Gem Co. and Purple Rose Florist, a three-in-one shop. Antique Warehouse displays an array of restored lamps and chandeliers. But my personal favorites are the repurposed vintage items made into lighting fixtures – think coffee urns, cameras, old plumbing, chicken feeders, etc.. The F&CCG Co. (a new addition to our Florence family of merchants) has repurposed old radio cabinets into wonderful displays for fabulous jewelry and rock specimens. I am always awe-struck by the amazing gems and minerals Mother Nature offers us, especially when they are set in beautiful hand-made jewelry. (You can tell by reading this that I was truly inspired to write it by what I find in Florence.) Oh, did I mention how inspiring the scenery is on the trip to Florence?
   Sometimes you feel like a road trip, sometimes you don’t. If you do, come find inspiration in Florence. (Covid restrictions apply.) If you don’t, visit virtually on

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