Do you remember the movie Out of Africa? “I had a farm in Africa”, Meryl Streep’s voice says somberly at
the very beginning in that foreboding way that you know she no longer does and you’ll find out why…
…I had a shop in Denton. I named it Bally Eden. Baillie is Gaelic for ‘at the mouth of’ or ‘source of’
Towns on rivers can have this first name. And my house is on the Choptank River.
And Eden is from Edenton which was my town’s name before it got shortened to Denton.
At the source of Eden is how I thought of it.
I opened the shop in 2004 in a lovely little house a block up the street from my own home.
I filled it full of antiques, cards, vintage doilies and aprons,
flowers, and new gifts that fit the theme. I decorated thematically so there was a linens/sewing/children’s room
and a rustic/boys area.
And of course a kitchen.
When Eamon was born, he was my little shop baby. People came to see him too .
I began a short-lived Farmer’s Market that year while I was pregnant. And helped set up a
downtown business association.
My sister did a spectacular job designing this beautiful brochure shopping guide.
And when the economy tanked in 2006, I knew I could not justify taking food out of my little boy’s mouth.
And we closed Bally Eden on the coldest day in January of 2007.
My first-born, my shop, was put to sleep. My hopes and my opportunities to play with display were gone.
A tragedy to me. I all but buried all the shop pictures.
But this month was an opportunity to resurrect my visual past. And to commemorate the effort and beauty that I created at Bally Eden.
Thanks for your compassion through the years you people that remember.
Next post up is the tour of the shop with pictures from the day we opened. And after that, the television commercial.
Shalagh, what a beautiful little shop you had. You are so talented with display and design, and I love the origin story for your store. Very cool! Off to vote…
Thank you so much Amy. Wait for tonight’s pictures, they’re even better. Funny how pictures can tell so much, huh? And that from a person who could talk, or type atcha,for days. Thanks for the support on all levels. I think you do know what it means to me.
Looks like it was a wonderful place. Thank you for sharing. It sounds incredibly hard to let go of your dream to keep moving forward in the face of a downturn, but there’s strength in what you did. You could have kept going until it became something you hated. Letting go is a powerful tool that not a lot of people use.
Amen Sister. Maybe, when I shut her down, I wasn’t as in love with it as I was in the beginning, but I’d imagined I would have an identity and purpose because of my shop ownership.I was letting go of expectations. And dreaded being trapped in the house with a toddler. You may know of which I speak.
Thanks for the thanks.