Saturday, December 26, 2009

An (Almost) End-of-Year Letter From Your Favorite Local Boutique/Art Gallery/Cabaret ( who else could it be?)

Dear Friends:

Art will get you through times of no money
Better than money will get you through times of no art...

Have you ever thought what our lives would be like without the arts in all their vast and varied glory?

There would be no Mozart, no Phoenix, no Beatles, no Abba
There would be no film or Gone With the Wind, no MadMen, no Friends
There would be no Meryls, no Denzels, no Carys, no Audreys
There would be no oral history, no creative use of language
There would be no Jane Austen, no Pablo Neruda, no Mark Twain
There would be no jokes, no Chris Rock, no hilarious stories
There would be no painting or Monets, no DaVincis, no Kahlos
There would be no useful objects, beautifully made
There would be no warm and inviting houses to shelter and form us
There would be no lovely fabric or jewelry with which to adorn ourselves
There would be no paella, no sushi, no ArtsEcho cheesecake!

Art is all of the creative accomplishments that have been achieved by ourselves and the twenty billion people who have gone before us on this planet. Art is of the highest importance in making our lives livable, enjoyable, meaningful, understandable.

This is our (possibly not too subtle, but only once a year) way of asking you to make an end-of-year, totally tax-exempt contribution to our extremely worthy non-profit organization, ArtsEcho. We use our charming, neighborhood-uplifting and warm little shop to present the most marvelous artists in our gallery (and sell their work with no commission). And as many of you know, we convert ourselves into a cabaret every so often to produce and present fantastic concerts right here since we believe that there is great value in experiencing superb live music in a close and intimate setting (for FREE)! All of this is done on the proverbial shoe-string budget by good people who care a great deal about art, community, our neighborhood, and the future. And just so we never get bored (LOL) we also produce and present the math show "Arithmetickles" for school assembly audiences thoughout the US.

If you want your donations to have a STRONG LOCAL IMPACT and to go to an organization that will use EVERY SINGLE PENNY of your contribution to promote its mission (and not to fly its Executive Director off to a meeting in the South of France...hmmm, that doesn't sound too bad), please consider making a donation to ArtsEcho. We are a 501(c)3 tax-exempt organization and official New Jersey charity, and will IMMEDIATELY provide you with a lovely letter (for Uncle Sam) signed by me (the one who's not going to the South of France...darn).

Here are a few pictorial reminders of who we are, how hard we work, and how much fun we have doing it:


That's Karina after dressing her BFF, Raquelle, in a perfect-for-New-Year's-Eve-outfit; a surprised Arianna putting a scarf on the "lady lamp"; me at my desk after I cleaned it (!), and Ben F. demonstrating a new, handmade feather headband.

We wish you all a delightful Holiday season, a productive and healthy New Year (more on that next week) and time to relax and enjoy the good things in life.

Warm regards, Sandra and the ArtsEcho Galleria team, Lil (returning from Florida today), Crystal (snowmobiling in Maine), Ben, Arianna, Karina & Lina.

PS: Oh yes, "ArtsEcho" goes on the dotted line...and the address is 3809 Park Avenue, Union City, NJ 07087.

PPS: All this week our wonderful collection of clothing is on a TWOFER sale! That's TwoFer One Price!

PPPS: This week we're open M-W 11-7, Thurs 11-whenever (New Year's Eve...), closed Friday (January 1st...sleep, sleep, sleep!) and open Saturday 10-6. You can reach us at 201-617-1110 if you are as confused as I am.

PPPPS: More soon about the ArtsEcho Galleria exhibit in the Brennan County Courthouse Rotunda Gallery (this is a BIG honor for us!) opening on January 11. It's called "ART VIVO! A Wealth of New Jersey Artists" (and truer words were never spoken).

Friday, December 18, 2009

Why Are We Smiling At ArtsEcho Galleria?

Dear Friends:

Question: Why is our Arianna smiling in the following photo?
Answer: Because she is wearing one of our new, handmade white MINK headbands (you can't see the jewels and feathers on it, but they are there...) (Also, she's glad that she is standing next to peacock feathers and not the whole peacock.)

Question: Why is our Lil smiling in the following photo?
Answer: Because that ArtsEcho Gift Certificate says $1,000,000! (And, as you all know, Lil is worth every penny.) You, too, can get an ArtsEcho Gift Certificate (in a lovely envelope and adorable gift bag like the one in the photo) for $25 or $50 or $100, that the special person(s) in your life can choose from among our amazing collection of gorgeous things like some of these great bags and scarves...(or even that vintage Sputnik lamps from the 60s!)

Last one:

Question: Why are we ALL smiling at ArtsEcho Galleria this week?

Answer: Because our wonderful new neighbors, the "Touch of Spice" Indian Restaurant is opening today! We are very excited about it since the owners, Prevan and Pepita (and all of Pepita's sisters) are among our favorite ArtsEcho friends. Last year they came into our charming little shop and asked if we thought an Indian restaurant in the "Watertower District" (that's our slice of Park Avenue heaven) would be a welcome addition. Well, after we finished jumping up and down and screaming "yessss" for 15 minutes, they got the idea. Yesterday Lil and I had the honor of being in the ribbon cutting ceremony (with the charming (and surprisingly funny!) Mayor Turner and Weehawken Councilfolk) and then SAMPLING THE FOOD. OMG...very, very delicious.

Merry Christmas to all, have a lovely week, stop by and see us, get a kiss (Hershey's, that is), soak up the warm and inviting atmosphere, buy some lovely gifts and try to RELAX!

Warm regards,
Sandra and the delightful ArtsEcho team, Lil, Crystal, Ben, Arianna, Karina, Lina & Dina.


PPS: We are at 3809 Park Ave, lest you forget, and we're open from 11-7 M-W, 11-8 Th (Friday is Christmas!!!!) and 10-6 on Sat.

PPPS: You can see lots more on our Facebook page. Please become a FAN! We're at "ArtsEcho". (I love Facebook...)

PPPPS: Please forward this to all of the trendy and cool people you know (and a few who aren't but could be if they shopped here!)

Friday, December 11, 2009

Thank Goodness for Heads...Without One You Can't Wear A Headband!

Dear Friends: It is a cold and blustery Friday eve but inside ArtsEcho Galleria it is warm and inviting. We have had lovely people here all day long (but you know we think that all the people who come in here are lovely, and, well, they are.) Many men were her today buying presents for...guess who? You! We are so delighted when guys come in here saying "My wife (fiancee/girlfriend/daughter/significant other/all of the previous) told me to come here and buy a ring (necklace/bracelet/bag/scarf/all of the previous). (Don't worry...for the truly clueless, we have Gift Certificates in adorable gift bags...). Ah, the joys of December!

Speaking of December joys, we had a huge joy on Wednesday evening. The velvet-voiced Jennifer Lampert was here with two superb musicians, Gary Schreiner on accordion and chromatic harp (...a fancy harmonica) and Jeremy Beck on piano and vocals. Here's the beautiful Jen with Gary, and that's Jeremy in front of our gallery wall.

jen and garyjeremy beck

What a wonderful evening it was. New Jersey is so incredibly rich in music and musicians and singers and songs. The final song of the evening, "Slip Slidin' Away" by Paul Simon (born in Newark) has been playing in my head since then; while I was listening to Jen and Jeremy sing it, I almost felt like I was in a trance. There is something about hearing wonderful music being performed live in a small and intimate space that is an incomparable experience. We had a full house of happy people who also gazed in wonder at Dexter Lane's huge (shot in Weehawken...oooh, sorry, that sounds like Alexander Hamilton...) panoramas of the New York skyline. Dexter's photos are on exhibit here for the month of December. They are also on sale and are priced from $30 (for a 4" x 30" panorama) to $700 for a 17" x 112" panorama! All are original signed photographs, of course. Now that's a gift!

So...where were we? Oh yes, headbands! Feathers! Jewels! Silk! Feathers & jewels! Jewels & silk! Even zippers. These new, absolutely must-have fashion statements dress up any outfit immediately. And can, of course, be matched to bags, scarves, pins and tops. Here are a few modeled by some ArtsEcho favorites:

These headbands won't keep you warm, but they sure do look cute (even on one of our Chinese, wooden, hand-painted horses). If you want to keep warm, come visit us. And while you're here shopping you can munch on Oreo cookies, our "treat of the month"... (they were invented in Hoboken in 1912 and 362,000,000,000 (that's BILLION!!!!) have been eaten since then).

Happy Weekend, Happy Chanukah, warm regards,
Sandra and the ArtsEcho Galleria team, Lil, Crystal, Ben, Arianna, Karina & Lina

PS: Here are Lil, Arianna and Karina, three of the most charming (and hardest working...they turned the Galleria into a cabaret with 60 seats and back again into a shop) young women you will ever meet:

PPS: We're here M-W 11-7, Th-F 11-8, Sat 10-6; call us at 201-617-1110.

PPPS: ON SALE THIS WEEK!!! Our adorable headbands and our fabulous, you-won't-see-anywhere-else jewelry is 25% off this week (and that's off our already ridiculously low prices...)

PPPPS: There will be a surprise BOGOHO (BUYONEGETONEHALFOFF) sale on our delightful clothing collection this week. (OK, I'll tell you when it's on Tuesday and Thursday but don't tell know what? Tell everyone!)

PPPPPS: Oh yes...there is a FANTASTIC FOUR PAGE article about ArtsEcho Galleria coming out this week in PALISADE MAGAZINE! Don't miss it!


Tuesday, December 8, 2009



Wednesday, December 9 at 7pm
ArtsEcho Galleria
3809 Park Ave
Union City

"The Sound..." is by Jennifer Lampert, an extraordinary singer who will be presenting an entirely new and delightful show of music from New Jersey. Not only our favorite Frankie, but perennials like Leslie Gore, Whitney Houston, Jon Bon Jovi and of course, The Boss, will be making musical appearances in spectacular new arrangements.


"The View..." is by Dexter Lane, the amazing panorama photographer who often gets up before dawn (!!) to photograph the skyline across the river that can only be seen from guessed it, NEW JERSEY! You've never seen anything like Dexter's huge panoramas.

Other than serving superb music and art, we will also be serving OREO COOKIES (invented in Hoboken) and homemade delights made with M&Ms (invented in Newark)...a real New Jersey FEAST for the ears, eyes and palate.

We'll all be here and we look forward to seeing you all here tomorrow night!

Best regards from Sandra, Lil, Crystal, Ben, Arianna, Karina and Lina

Friday, December 4, 2009

Wrap It Up! Scarves Have Yards and Yards of History

Dear Friends:
I have been trying to write about our beautiful scarves for several weeks now, but everytime I try to, I find that we are almost all sold out! Well, it is December, and that makes it classic scarf weather and now we have a good stock of beautiful scarves in our charming little shop.

Scarves are so ubiquitous that it's hard to think that they actually have "history" but they do. Scarves date back at least as far as ancient Rome where they were called sudarium. They were originally used by the ever-pragmatic Romans to wipe their necks and faces. But, of course, they soon became a fashion accessory and both men and women wore them draped around their necks (the Romans loved to drape everything) or knotted around their waists. And here we are 2000 years later doing the same thing. Since Roman times, scarves have been in use all over the world, by Chinese warriors, Croatian mercenaries (who called them "kravatas", hence our cravats), the fashionable French, the freezing Scandinavians and just about anyone else you can name. They have been used to proclaim political beliefs and establish ethnic identities. Here are a few of the new scarves you'll find at ArtsEcho Galleria (we just use them as great fashion statements and for warmth and color):


The first photo has very stretchy, intricate scarves in fantastic colors, (all of which we can match our amazing bags and belts...that's a hint)...the second has fabric that is "poufed" all over (with a parrot pin...pins are great on scarves) and the last one is satin handsewn over velvet...beautiful and unusual and flying out of the galleria!

And here is our own Lil, back from amazing adventures in Panama, cutting through the jungle, digging the canal, (jumping on and off buses in Panama City!) just in time to model a new scarf, subtly shaded with a great metallic shine. Doesn't she look happy to be back?

That's probably because Lil and all of the rest of us are so excited by the upcoming concert with singer Jennifer Lampert and the exhibition of huge panoramic photos by Dexter Lane. Don't forget, it's this coming Wednesday (December 9) at 7pm. As always, you'll meet wonderful neighbors including many actors, artists and musicians, hear excellent music, see great art, eat delicious goodies and get to mingle and party with all of us! What could be better?

Have a lovely weekend, warm regards,
Sandra and the terrific ArtsEcho Galleria team, Lil, Arianna, Crystal, Ben, Karina, Dina and Lina

PS: Toni Figaro, who makes exquisite handmade scarves that are for sale in the Galleria will be here tomorrow morning knitting away!

PPS: If you haven't already, please go to our Facebook page (ArtsEcho) and FAN us! We'll be posting all of our new things there (well, eventually...)

PPPS: Please think of our charming little Galleria when you go shopping for the holidays. We have highly unusual things that you won't find in (horrors) the malls! And we have adorable gift boxes and gift cards to make your holiday season a joyful one.

PPPPS: Oh yes, we also have GIFT CERTIFICATES!!!!

PPPPPS: We're here M-W 11-7, Th-F 11-8 and Sat 10-6. We'll be closing a little early on this Wednesday to get ready for the fun!

Friday, November 27, 2009

Tschaikovsky, Brewski, Apres-Ski...but who is this Swarovski?

Dear Friends:

OK...we all know Tchaikovsky's wonderful music like "Swan Lake"...(believe me, even if you don't know it by name, you'll know it when you hear it). And "brewski" is now in quite a few dictionairies (and I'm sure I don't need to explain that one to anyone)... Apres-Ski...well, not in this weather, but we can hope.

So who is this Swarovski and why does everyone who loves jewelry know the name?

It turns out that Daniel Swarovski was born in Bohemia (which has lent its name to the Boho style...more on Boho in another email) in 1862. His father had a small glass factory and young Daniel grew up playing among the shining shards.

After becoming a glass cutter, Daniel learned of a new invention from our own Tom Edison (and this was over a century before Google...) and was inspired to invent a machine for cutting thousands of perfect facets in crystal (which is the highest quality glass with lots of lead in it) with far greater precision than had ever been done before.

And the result? Exquisite Swarovski crystal can be found in magnificent jewelry all over the world, including guessed it...ArtsEcho Galleria! Here's a tiny little sample of Swarovski crystal encircling a gorgeous, huge cubic zirconia:

We have lots of beautiful new jewelry, including sparkly earrings, glittering necklaces, gleaming bracelets, shimmering rings...I could go on and on but I'll just end with: Thanks, Daniel.

Warm regards,
Sandra and the wonderful ArtsEcho team: Lil (returning from Panama on Sunday), Karina (who has been filling in for Lil), Crystal (H. not S.), Ben, Arianna, Jackie, Dina and Lina.

PS: Hope everyone's Thanksgiving was wonderful...and now...on to Christmas! To accompany our exquisite jewelry, we have great boxes (including ring boxes), lovely red tissue paper (on its way), adorable gift bags and even gift cards...
all for free! Simplified holiday shopping, anyone?

PPS: Here's the lovely Jen Lampert who will be performing at our next concert "THE SOUND FROM HERE, THE VIEW FROM HERE" celebrating the music and views from NJ! The extraordinary panoramas (some TEN FEET LONG!) of our favorite photographer, Dexter Lane, will be on exhibit as well. Save the date: Wednesday, December 9th, 7, art, food!

PPPS: Hours: M-W 11-7, Th-F 11-8, Sat 10-6; Phone: 201-617-1110

PPPPS: We are on FaceBook! And we update photos a lot! If you love FB, please go to ArtsEcho and FAN US!

PPPPPS: I have to go home now...

Friday, November 20, 2009

BLACK FRIDAY at ArtsEcho...well, perhaps DARK GREY Friday

Dear Friends:

On this warm November 20 evening, I want to greet you all and wish you a very Happy upcoming Thanksgiving! I love Thanksgiving as it is really the only non-commercial holiday that we celebrate. It's all about eating, family, eating, relaxing, eating, watching football, eating, napping...

So doesn't it just get to you that the next day has become one of the most commercial days of the year? Well, if you can't fight 'em...

On Friday, in the spirit of "joining 'em" the ArtsEcho way, we will be open (not at 6am, not at 3am, not at 1am) but at 9am!!!! And unlike some of our competitors (like Walmart and Macy's...OK, lol) we won't have just a few things on sale, but EVERYTHING will be 40% off!!!! Even our fabulous jewelry (that you won't find anywhere else and that NEVER goes on sale since our prices are already soooo looooow) will be on sale. Here are a few samples of our wonderful new things to whet your appetites (for BLING, not turkey...):


That's Arianna and Karina behind the counter (no, they are not for sale on Black Friday) with flowers from Ben Roman and a basket of chocolate kisses that we always keep on hand to sweeten your day...

And that's Guy, the best doggie in the world...he's for sale...$20,000, discount!

Have a wonderful week, warm regards,

Sandra and the ArtsEcho Galleria team, Lil (on her way to Panama!), Crystal, Ben (returning from Israel this week), Judy, Arianna, Jackie, Karina, Lina, Dina and our new intern Claude (pronounced Claud-ay).

PS: Next week I'll tell you all about the Dec. 9th "New Jersey" concert with the amazing Jennifer Lampert who has sung at the Rainbow Room, The Waldorf, Roseland Ballroom, Giant Stadium & Shea Stadium, not to mention touring the world entertaining the troops as Miss USO 2001! She will be joined by Emmy award winning musician Gary Schreiner and a few other surprise guests!

PPS: Ah yes, we are open M-W 11-7, Friday 9am - whenever, Saturday 10-6.

PPPS: Ben Roman's exhibit ("People of WaterColor") last Friday night was superb! Over 60 of our neighbors, friends, artists were here admiring Ben's amazing watercolors. Make sure to stop by to see them.

Friday, November 13, 2009

The Joys of "Visual Marketing" (or making it up as you go along)

Dear Friends:

I've just learned that what we at ArtsEcho Galleria call "let's move everything around and see how it looks" is also called Visual Marketing. We always get comments from you all saying "Oh, you've changed the store!"'s fun to do it (builds muscles!) and we love to see what looks best where. Well, it turns out that you can spend about $200,000 and get a fancy degree in this. There are even universities that offer PhD's in Visual Marketing.

So here is the ArtsEcho Galleria do-it-yourself version of Visual Marketing with some lovely new items that are in the Galleria (notice how the bags and scarves and pins all match!)

And sitting on the famous pink couch (did I ever tell you that it is the exact same couch that was in the 2005 film "The Producers"? Yes, friends and film trivia buffs, Nathan Lane and Matthew Broderick sat on this couch and 8 men danced on it in the film) is our mannequin Rachel, also VM'd with the Einstein Wall behind her:

So stop on by, enjoy our ad hoc Visual Marketing and all of the lovely things (and people!) who are here at ArtsEcho Galleria, our charming little shop.

Warm regards,
Sandra and the ArtsEcho team, Lil, Crystal, Judy, Ben, Jackie, Arianna, Karina, Dina and Lina.

PS: Speaking of wonderful people, don't forget that tonight at 7pm you can meet the watercolor artist Ben Roman right here at ArtsEcho Galleria in his first solo show "People of WaterColor". You'll also meet some terrific neighbors and other artists who will be here (and you'll get to try my famous homemade smoked salmon/ cilantro dip!)

PPS: Can't think of one, but didn't want to disappoint you...

PPPS: Oh yes! The secret (save 50% on one fabulous item of clothing including our really gorgeous "Classy Cardigans") word is "Hurricane Ida".

PPPPS: We're open M-W 11-7, Th-F 11-8, Sat 10-6 and you can reach us at 201-617-1110

Friday, November 6, 2009

The Fantastic Fun of Fashion

Dear Friends: Take a little beret, add a sweet plaid jacket, a wonderful scarf, a big black belt, put it all together with a swirly leather skirt with some ruffles (leather ruffles!) some shiny black tights, thigh high suede boots and you! Totally up-to-the-minute fashion. Fashion that feels fashion... frivolous and fantastic facets of fashion...OK, enough with the "f" words...

Meet Karina Osorio, our college intern. Karina is studying Fashion Marketing at LIM (Laboratory Institute of Merchandising) in NY. Fashion is a very, very big business as in multi-billion dollar global business. Well, why not? Everyone wears clothes. But the how and the why of what you wear has a strong effect on how you feel. And that, in turn, affects how you present yourself to the world.

Of course, everything Karina is wearing is from our charming little Galleria. And, as you know, we don't just choose our collection from catalogs or lists, but search out every special one-of-a-kind item from designers, collectors, contacts and special sales. So stop by soon, swoon over scrumptious scarves, skirts, shirts, sables and saris in our sartorial showroom...OK, no more "s" words...

I'm so glad to be back at ArtsEcho, chained to my computer, loving every moment.

Warm regards, Sandra and the wonderful ArtsEcho team, Lil, Crystal, Ben, Judy, Arianna, Jackie, Dina, Lina and Karina

PS: Next Friday night at 7pm...join us for the opening of the exhibition "People of WaterColor", a solo show by the wonderful artist, Ben Roman.

PPS: Coming up on Wednesday, December 9: "The View From Here, The Sounds From Here". Save the date!

PPPS: We're here M-W 11-7, Th-F 11-8 and Sat 10-6 and you can reach us at 201-617- 1110.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Yassou! from Athens and "Sustainable Couture"

Dear Friends:
A family issue brings me to Athens, Greece this week. In my spare time I have been wandering around the city trying to find the "Greekest" places. It's not that easy.
Years ago, the Athens flea market had stall after stall of items made all over Greece. Lots of handmade pottery, wood carvings and dolls in traditional dress, particularly those cute guy dolls in the short white skirts and blue blouses. (Will the Greeks ever live that down?) Now, of course, almost all of the Greek souvenirs are made in China.
The women here are very fashionable with the right shoes, jeans, skirts, tops, sweaters, jewelry and bags (huuuuge bags). And they look exactly like the women in Union City, Weehawken and New York (and probably Boise, Melbourne and Vladivostok.) These items all come from China as well. What d'ya wanna bet that the trendy women in Beijing only wear jeans made in the US, France or Italy?
This brings me to one of our new ideas: "Sustainable Couture". It seems the only way that one can have totally original items in our 21st century is to create them yourself (that's the couture part..."couture" in French means hand-sewn) or purchase them from a charming little shop (hint, hint) that supports designers making one-of-a-kind items out of superb existing fabrics (that's the sustainable part). A classic win-win. You get to wear fantastic original things while helping emerging designers, a sweet neighborhood shop (ArtsEcho Galleria, of course) and the environment!
We will be having a mini-"sustainable fashion" show as part of our next musical evening (December 9th) to show (and show-off) some of our vintage and designer clothes as well as some of the new and exciting things being created (as we e-speak) at the Galleria.
Upcoming events:
Friday, November 13: meet Ben Roman (and all of us) and see his wonderful watercolors.
Wednesday, December 9: Hear Jennifer Lampert (an amazing singer!) sing great NJ songs and see our own Dexter Lane prove photographically that "there's no place like home".
Warm regards and Yassou! from Sandra and the ArtsEcho Galleria team (busy holding down the fort)...Lil, Judy, Crystal, Ben, Arianna, Jackie, Karina, Lina and Dina (and Toni who will be teaching knitting tomorrow morn)...
PS: We're open on M-W 11-7, Th-F 11-8 and Sat 10-6. You can call us at 617-1110.
PPS: Since I'm in Athens, I have NO IDEA what's on sale, but I bet that the lovely Lil does and I'm sure she'll be glad to tell you! Hi, Lil...(I'm waving...)
PPPS: We are starting a list of artists (visual, musical, theatrical, photographical, etc) for a the North Hudson Artist Coalition, a new organization (for which we will donate admin services and a place to meet). We are doing this so that artists who live in our area can have a stronger voice in Hudson County. If you are an artist (or know one in Union City, Weehawken, West New York, Guttenberg or North Bergen), please give us a call or send me an email.

Friday, October 23, 2009

NUDE at ArtsEcho Galleria (isn't that a great marketing ploy?)


Dear Friends:

Now aren't you glad you opened this email?

"Autumn" is an extraordinary new watercolor painting by artist Ben Roman. It is part of the upcoming solo exhibition of Ben's remarkable work, "People of WaterColor", at ArtsEcho Galleria. The thing that amazes me most about this painting (and you will see it much more clearly in the to speak) is the way Ben painted the unforgettable expression on her face. Until I saw this painting I never thought about the fact that faces are not what you usually focus on when you see paintings of nudes. (Cut it out, I can hear you saying "duh".) But bodies can be a bit generic as in "you've seen one gorgeous nude, you've seen 'em all" (with apologies to Renoir) but memorable faces are quite astonishing...and much, much harder to paint. Ben is a master.

ben painting
You are all invited to join us to meet the delightful Ben Roman right here at our charming little place on Friday, November 13th at 7pm and see 12 other amazing watercolor paintings as well as the new Albert Einstein wall (and, of course, partake of our yummy offerings...possibly even "The Cheesecake"!)


And now for a spectacular announcement:

As many of you know, the young woman below is our own Arianna Cummings, who, today, received the highly coveted Nordstrom Scholarship. Arianna is a senior in Union City High School and has worked here since the day we opened. She is one of FIVE students from NJ to receive the scholarship which will contribute $10,000 (10,000 dollars!!!!!) to her college of choice. Although Arianna wants to study English, History & Drama, she is also a wonderful artist and the chief "stylist" of our famous mannequins. So a huge congratulations to this extraordinary young woman (who is, by the way, dressed all in ArtsEcho in this knew I had to get that in somewhere...)

arianna by mirror

Warm regards to all, have a terrific week,

Sandra and the marvelous ArtsEcho Galleria team: Lil, Jackie, Arianna smiling above (...and she really has what to smile about...), Crystal, Judy, Ben, and our intern/volunteers, Karina, Lina and Dina (and no, we did not ask them to work here because their names rhyme...)

PS: Get-out-the-calendar-time: In addition to Friday, Nov 13th at 7pm for the "Meet the Artist" reception with Ben Roman, please mark down Wednesday, Dec 9th, 7pm, for our concert/exhibition, THE VIEW FROM HERE/THE SOUNDS FROM HERE featuring the huge photo-ramas of Dexter Lane and an original take on well-known New Jersey music by singer Jennifer Lampert.

PPS: This week, get 50% off one fabulous item from our clothing collection when you mention the secret words which are "Congratulations, Arianna!" You can say it to any of us...we'll pass it on!

PPPS: Hours are M-W 11-7, Th-F 11-8, Sat 10-6; you can reach us at 201-617-1110; and for those of you who have asked, we do take credit/debit cards, (hey, we're a modern shop!) but only Visa and MC.

Friday, October 16, 2009

HUGE Rings & ENORMOUS Bags...don't you just love fashion?

Dear Friends:

As I write this, Lil and Jackie are moving things around in the Galleria. Lil is putting our new and HUMONGOUSLY LARGE handbags on top of our antique Chinese tree trunk. Jackie is artfully placing GIGANTICALLY COLOSSAL rings in the wonderful walnut bookcase (the original from 1938) that we inherited when the Weehawken HS science lab was remodeled last year.

I love fashion. I love how hems go up and down...sometimes waaay up and waaay down. (Did your English teacher tell you that essays should be like a woman's skirt...long enough to cover the subject but short enough to be interesting?) I love how in some years women carry miniscule bags (but manage to squeeze in all of the essentials); and then the winds of fashion change and...voila! Here is the traditional 1 photo/1000 word proof (except here are 2 photos, modeled by Jackie):

And rings! Forget delicate. Refined? Pshaw! And most of all, forget SUBTLE! Want to see what I mean?

Wow! Now that's what I call BLING! And it's not even sparkly!

(Don't worry, we still have our lovely and elegant silver-gemstone rings and our exquisite (and petite!) beaded antique, vintage and designer handbags, but please don't tell the fashion police...)

Warm regards,

Sandra and the magnificent ArtsEcho Galleria team: Lil, Judy, Crystal, Ben, Arianna, Jackie and Karina, Dina and Lina (and Toni, knitter-extraordinaire).

We will be having great music, wonderful art, a mini-fashion show and, of course, superb food (cheesecake lovers, do you even have to ask??) More soon...

PPS: We're open 'til 7 M-T-W and 'til 8 on Th and F! 'Til 6 on Saturday, but we open at 10am! Weekdays we open at 11am. Got that?

PPPS: You can call us at 201-617-1110 and visit our website at if you want to read all about us! Our wonderful web designer, Tamara, is revising the site to make it very trendy and just a little edgy, just like us!

PPPPS: OK, just one more: Since you all love the "BOGOHO" sales (BUYONEGETONEHALFOFF), we will be having surprise BOGOHO days...but you can still mention this email and get 50% off one wonderful item of clothing (including our fabulous new winter scarves, sweaters and lacy, it's cold outside!)

Friday, October 9, 2009

On Top of Mountains and Deep Underground

Dear Friends:

Back at our charming little galleria after a short but fantastic trip. I must say I missed the shop, the wonderful people who work here, and all of you. In my brief absence, Lil, Arianna & Jackie rearranged the entire store as a surprise! Wow. It's so good to move things around as you see them with a new perspective. It's good to move yourself around occasionally as well for the same reason and that's what my friend Shosha and I did this week.

Sandra and Walter May
As I mentioned in my last email, we met Warren May, the last traditional Kentucky dulcimer maker and here he is (with me)! He sends dulcimers all over the world from his little shop in Berea. And here is a photo of one of the deer antler baskets that we found in the Kentucky Center for the Arts made by Janet Northern. It's quite amazing.

janet northern basket

We met artists and musicians everywhere and lots of friendly Southerners who really do say things like "y'all come back now!" But most of all, we saw incredible sights like the huge Luray Caverns in Virginia and the view from the top of the Blue Ridge Mountains in North Carolina (that's Shosha on top of the mountain).

Still, it's always good to come back home. We brought lovely new jewelry, some great vintage square dancing dresses (what else?), amazing fossils and lots of great ideas.

Warm regards, have a great week, stop by and say hello,

Sandra and the ArtsEcho Galleria team, Lil, Judy, Crystal, Ben, Arianna, Jackie, our volunteers, Dina and Lina and Karina, our intern.

PS: Knitting, anyone? Tomorrow with Toni...

PPS: Look below for the coupon!

PPPS: Lil asked me to tell you all that our furniture and antiques are ON SALE for the first time as we need more room in the shop. Yay!

Friday, September 18, 2009

ArtsEcho Galleria and President Obama

Dear Friends: It's been a lovely, warm and productive week here at ArtsEcho Galleria. For those of you who are "Prairie Home Companion" fans, I almost said Lake Wobegon...actually, here it's more like Lake Weebehawken.

Many of our friends are back from vacation and summer travels and have stopped in to say hello and enjoy our gorgeous new clothing and jewelry. We're working hard...finding more and more amazing things from all over the world, not to mention lots of designer items. I hate to be a name-dropper (yeah, right...I love it...) but Kate Spade, Ms. Prada, Mr. L. Vuitton, and Ms. Pucci are all visiting the Galleria right now together with many of their colleagues...

Ben Roman, the wonderful watercolor portrait painter who exhibits here at the Galleria, is back from his first trip to the Dominican Republic. This week Ben brought in his easel and paints and started painting right in the Galleria! He (like us and many of you) loves the warm and friendly atmosphere here (and possibly the chocolates...)

Just after Barack Obama was elected President, I begged Ben to paint his portrait. He chose a thoughtful and introspective view of President Obama and finished the painting this week. Never satisfied, now I want a painting of our stunning First Lady, too. (Artistically speaking, I am so spoiled...)

We are in the planning stages of our new "season". One of our soirees will be a (hopefully rather wild) fashion show....and all of our models are customers of the Galleria! We're also working on an evening of the glorious music and art of Mexico. And a Winter Photo contest is coming up as well.

Hope you are all well and enjoying the cooler weather.

Warm regards,

Sandra and the ArtsEcho Galleria team; Lil, Judy, Crystal, Jackie & Arianna

Friday, September 11, 2009

We Are Springing Into Fall (...or The Summer That Never Was...)

Dear Friends:

Usually by this time of year everyone is saying: "What, summer's already over?" But summer 2009 seems like the summer-that-never-really-got-started and here it is almost autumn. At least all of my plants and flowers (like the magnificent mandevillas in prolific pink in front of ArtsEcho Galleria) are very happy.

I'm happy, too (although not prolifically pink).

We had our best day EVER on Labor Day. Not only did we break our previous one day $$$ record but we met the most wonderful people who wandered in all day long. Everyone always tells us that they have been meaning to stop in and see just exactly what goes on here (we sometimes wonder ourselves), and last Monday was one of those days. And the weather was glorious! (And naturally, everyone loved my secret-recipe cheesecake...)

Lil in Black Velvet
Several couples walked in and the male halves always asked me if we only sell things for women (meaning, of course, our lovely jewelry and clothing like the gorgeous black velvet gown on our stunning Lil) and I was delighted to show off our "new" collection of 800-year-old-arrowheads from Western Canada and our Roman coins that are about 2000 years old (really). We have these displayed with a sign over them saying "A GIFT FOR THE PERSON WHO HAS EVERYTHING"... so watch out, guys.

Speaking of gifts, we do have spectacular things. We keep enlarging our jewelry section since everyone loves our one-of-a-kind-never-seen-anything-like-it collection of amazing (and very reasonably priced) jewelry. And we're almost sold out of our handknit bags and scarves...

Toni Figaro's Handmade Handbags
Which reminds me, tomorrow is KNITTING DAY at ArtsEcho Galleria(we call it Knitty Gritty in Union City) with the amazing Toni Figaro. Toni charges a small set fee to teach someone to knit and that includes coming back again & again to learn new stitches and how to read patterns and even to get help with that sweater that you started 8 1/2 years ago (and that has made you feel guilty for the last 8 1/4 years). And since we believe it's so important to learn to do something creative with your hands, ArtsEcho provides beautiful FREE WOOL & KNITTING NEEDLES! And then you'll be able to make your own presents!

Have a lovely week, come visit us...warm regards,

Sandra and the valiant and hard-working ArtsEcho Galleria team: Lil, Judy, Crystal, Ben, Arianna and Jackie

Friday, September 4, 2009

Cheesecake and Labor Day

Dear Friends:

Where will you be on Labor Day?

After the bar-b-que or the sunbath, (or the 14 hour trip home from the Jersey shore), stop by and visit us here at ArtsEcho Galleria! We will be celebrating Labor Day with baked goodies, especially my famous SECRET-RECIPE CHEESECAKE! (Some of know who you are...have been trying to bribe me for the recipe and all I can say is "fuggedaboudit"!)

We have recently passed our one year anniversary here at our charming little shop and we are so thrilled to be a vibrant part of the Park Ave neighborhood that we are having a BIG SALE!

Our adorable summer tops and dresses will be...gasp...70% off!!! (and that's well below cost...). Our luscious new arrivals for fall will be 30% off (but just on Monday...hey, have a heart...)

And here's the big news: Our exquisite, totally unique, you've-never-seen-anything-like-it-anywhere-else-ever JEWELRY (all of it!) will be on a BUY ONE GET ONE HALF OFF sale (also known as BOGOHO...honestly)...

And there's more! For everyone who spends over $50, we will give you a $10 ArtsEcho FunnyMoney GiftCard that you can spend on your next visit! And you all know that $50 goes much faaaarrrrrther at ArtsEcho Galleria than anywhere else!

And another thing: On Labor Day we will be RAFFLING OFF one of our gorgeous necklaces ( of the sterling silver and gemstone ones) to one lucky Labor Day Visitor (even if you don't buy anything but just come for the cheesecake!) (How sweet is that?) (Not the!)

With warm regards,

Sandra and the ArtsEcho team, Lil, Crystal, Judy, Ben, Arianna & Jackie

PS: Due to enormous pressure and huge demand, we will be open on Sundays(!!) from 1 - 6 and you are all invited!

Friday, August 28, 2009

Paloma Picasso (and her gorgeous handbags) at ArtsEcho Galleria

Dear Friends:
It's very exciting here at ArtsEcho Galleria. Unlike other establishments (say...Macy's or...Walmart , for instance), we can decide on the spot what items we wish to carry. So many fascinating people come into our little shop and some of them bring very interesting things in with them.

That's how Paloma arrived at ArtsEcho (well, not in person, but represented by her wonderful handbags). One of our good friends worked for Paloma Picasso designing amazingly gorgeous bags. When Ms. Picasso decided that creating perfume was more to her liking, her NJ design center was closed and back she went to Paris. Ms. P is the youngest child of Pablo Picasso & Françoise Gilot (also an artist, and the author of the wonderful "Life With Picasso"). In Spanish, her name means "dove"; she was named after the symbol her father designed for the International Peace Conference in Paris in 1949, the year of her birth.

The lucky few designers who were close to Ms. P were given the best of the best. And so, one day the best of the best walked into ArtsEcho. Can you imagine walking into Walmart and asking the "greeter" if the store wants to acquire some handbags? No? Well, that's what ArtsEcho is for. We are your friendly neighborhood shop and WE DO WHAT WE WANT! (Take that, Walmart!)

This bag was made from a green alligator. It still has the price tag on it. It reads (are you sitting down?) $2,650.00. (Green alligators are very rare...) We, of course, will sell it to some lucky individual who loves our shop (and you know who you are...) for about 1/10th of the price...

And there are other Paloma Picasso bags that are just as lovely (but retailed for only (only!) about $1000...(so cheap...)). This one comes with an amazing belt. It is canvas and leather and totally unique.

And this one is handmade Lucite on both front and back with twisty solid brass handles...never seen anything like it.

As soon as I saw these bags, I realized that they are basically...artwork. That's why they fit in so well here at ArtsEcho. We love all types of art even the kind that was not necessarily made to hang on walls...some artwork was made to hang on arms.

Have a wonderful week, come visit us...come check out our "Red Dot" end of summer 1/2 price specials (great things!)...and make sure to stop by for our "Labor Day Blast" sale (great bargains and free goodies to eat baked by yours truly... possibly even my famous secret-recipe "to die for" cheesecake...)

Warm regards to all,

Sandra and the ArtsEcho Galleria team, Lil, Judy, Crystal (who got very rained upon on her bicycle this morning on the way to ArtsEcho), Jackie & Arianna (and lots of thanks to the two best summer interns, now on their way to autumn and university, Allison and Liz...we miss you!)

Friday, August 21, 2009

What Is It About Silver?

Dear Friends:

This week at our charming little enclave on Park Avenue we acquired some amazing new sterling silver jewelry.

As you all know, we seek out items that are unique, exclusive, rare, artistic, distinctive, and one-of-a-kind (good thing I don't have a thesaurus on hand...)
Silver has an amazing history. No one knows exactly when it was first used in jewelry, but the pharaohs of Egypt received silver presents from visitors from the island of Crete about 5000 YEARS AGO! Silver is one of only seven metals that predate the famous Periodic Table. It is the most reflective metal known to science, even more so than gold!

I love sterling silver jewelry. While gold is certainly wonderful, I always feel that it's a bit too serious for me. I wear two gold rings and never take them off. That's what you do with gold. You get serious with it.

Now glorious silver is precious but also playful. You can dress up any outfit with silver jewelry. You can have a silver necklace or bracelet that you only wear with one special thing...or with one special person. You can change your mood with silver. You change change your silver with your mood.
And when you add coral, peridot, smoky topaz, mystic topaz, rose quartz, clear quartz, sun sitara, onyx, Russian ukanite, dichroic glass, Picasso jasper, blue goldstone, tourmaline, larimar, Balkan amber, turquoise, natural rubies, roughhewn sapphires, amethyst, garnet, tiger's eye, dendrite opal, crystal, moonstone, rhodonite, sodalite, lapis lazuli, and my personal favorite (this week, at any rate), Brazilian drusy, sterling silver jewelry becomes a little carry-around-with-you work of art. And here at ArtsEcho Galleria we love works of art, big and small.

Have a lovely weekend,

Sandra and the ArtsEcho team, Lil, Judy, Crystal, Ben, Arianna, Jackie and Liz (with a fond farewell to the delightful Allison, on her way back to Boston U.)

Friday, August 14, 2009

ArtsEcho Galleria and "Sustainable" Fashion

Dear Friends:

We at ArtsEcho Galleria find ourselves at the forefront of the wonderful, much talked-about, "sustainable/green" that in our own ArtsEcho-y way, we are also helping to save the planet.

Yes, dear friends, as you know, we search out the very finest super-trendy and/or vintage clothing we can find (from designers, antique stores, online haunts, and special shops that are only accessible to non-profit organizations like ours) and then make sure that everything is in the finest condition possible, with all buttons, hems, laces and belts. And then we offer it to you at the lowest possible prices.

There are so many beautiful and exquisitely-made garments (made with the finest fabric) that need a home and new life. And we, together with yourselves, are giving them (and the earth) a chance!

And when we find a garment that has fabulous fabric, but may not be trendy enough for our discriminating customers (you guys), we save it in our will become part of something glorious made by the emerging designers who we are finding (and who are finding us)...

We are getting ready for our first fashion show...(hopefully in the late autumn). Some of the fashions will be created from existing fabrics from our wonderful fabric collection. And you'll know that, although they will not all be green-colored, but they will all be GREEN!

Go world!

Warm regards,

Sandra and the ArtsEcho Galleria team, Lil, Judy, Ben, Crystal, Arianna, Liz & Allison (& the Jackster...still sunbathing in El Sal)...(and the delightful Tamara who is revamping our great new website!)

Friday, July 31, 2009

Tomorrow is August...Our New Season is On the Way!

Dear Lovely People (and you know who you are...our customers!)

I'm tempted to say "Oh my gosh, it's already AUGUST!!! Time flies!! Where did the summer go???" But I'm not going to do that...

As many of you know, I am quite the optimist (even when it comes to government and the stock market and other not-so-easy-to-be-a-card-carrying-optimist institutions).

I don't mind getting older one bit and I'm quite proud of my age (I was born when Harry S. Truman was President; luckily, he's one of my favorite Presidents...Lincoln is another...glad I wasn't born when he was President)... Well, as I've thought (and undoubtedly said) many times, there is only one alternative to growing old...and we all know what that while you're alive, live! Enjoy! Go out! Read good books! See good movies! Eat good food! Meet good people! Have fun! Come to ArtsEcho! (Had to get that in...)

And that includes living every hot and sweaty August day (like tomorrow)...and every slippery, frozen-fingered snowstorm and every drenching rain (although, come ON, enough is eNOUGH already)...

We are planning our wonderful new season. It includes our upcoming Fashion Show (which may be a contest with emerging designers and will definitely feature many of our wonderful customers who will model), our upcoming Spanish Conversation Hora (no, we won't be dancing the Hora, that's hour in Spanish for you anglos like me), the continuation of Knitty Gritty in Union City with the charming Toni Figaro, another photo contest(!) for the holiday season...and the amazing Danza Nova Quintet in December.

So it's very exciting here at ArtsEcho and I am so glad to be alive.

Warm regards,

Sandra and the ArtsEcho team: Lil, Judy, Crystal, Ben, Arianna, Allison, Jackie (still in El Salvador) and Liz.

Friday, July 24, 2009

The Roses Are Magnificent This Year...(but so is the poison ivy!)

Dear Friends:
Well, we had the loveliest evening here on Wednesday night for the "Roses of Hudson County" Photo Contest Award Ceremony. We had roses galore and people galore and food galore, great magic, great songs in our rose singalong, and great fun! I had a wonderful time (and I hope everyone else did, too).

The First Prize winner was Mark Elliott, whose "Yellow Rose on Hudson Street" in Hoboken was exquisite. Second Prize went to Eileen Gaughan of Jersey City, a former flower shop owner (she knows her roses...or maybe, she knowses her roses...I know, I know, sorry) and Third Prize to Mickey Parani of Union City. The amazing Margaret Steele, magician extraordinaire, did rose magic tricks (how cool is that?). Our own incredible Judy Bro took time out from her ArtsEcho grantwriting to play and sing rose songs in a singalong with the entire audience (and when Judy tells you to cannot help but sing...and love it!) Ronn Yedidia, our musical director played a wonderful medlley of well-known songs about...let's see now...oh yes, roses (there are thousands of songs with the word "rose" in them...almost like the songs in Spanish with the word "corazon" which seems to be in EVERY song I hear). I baked my famous secret-recipe cheesecake, this time with rose petal topping. In short...a good time was had by all!! We'll have all of the photos up on our website this week.

Have you noticed that the roses are still blooming everywhere? They usually finish blooming by the 3rd week in June. I have NEVER seen a thing like it in the middle of July...EVER! But, then again, I've never seen a June that thought it was a rainy April. And that's not all...July seems to think it's May! Or maybe even October...this week we had someone in the store in a coat! I kid you not...a coat in July...

So....those glorious roses in pink, red, yellow, lavendar, that LOVE lots of water and coolish weather, just keep on blooming! Yay!

But here's the iffy's not only the roses that love these conditions. In my (very) early morning walks throughout Weehawken and Union City I have seen more POISON IVY than I have EVER seen before. Lush, green, shiny, thriving, THREE-LEAVED, itchy, nasty, awful Poison Ivy. When I was manning (well, womanning) the Master Gardener Hotline in Bergen County several years ago, many of our calls were from people with poison ivy in their gardens and rashes all over their bodies. It's no joke. Since we are in an urban environment many people have never seen PI and don't know how dangerous it can be...but it's all over and it's BAD!

So check out this link and prepare to smell the roses and not get anywhere near the the poison ivy!

(Anyone itching??? I start itching just thinking about it...)

Warm (and somewhat scratchy) regards,

Sandra and the ArtsEcho team, Lil (off to Washington, DC tomorrow), Judy, Arianna, Jackie (who sends regards from El Salvadore), Liz (from Wisconsin) and Allison

Friday, July 17, 2009

Michael Kors, eat your heart out...

Dear Friends:

Thousands and thousands of pieces of wonderful clothing...made every day. Created by the finest designers in the world from the best FABRIC.

Sometimes the clothing is purchased and worn and loved and cherished...and just stays in a box in a storeroom until it is out of style...and after all, fashion is all about style.

That's where we at ArtsEcho Galleria come in. With our new label, ArtsEcho Design, we are gleaning the finest fabric (sometimes by the best designers, hence the title of this message) and we are starting to use their gorgeous fabric to make trendy, updated, upcycled fashion (often combining fabrics, lace, buttons, etc. from several designers as in Yves St. Laurent meet Betsey Johnson) while promoting the renewable-ness of Mother Earth at the same time.

That's the concept of "fashion upcycling"...using existing fabric to create a totally new, trendy, wonderful and desirable garment. Here at ArtsEcho, we are at the forefront!

With warm regards,

Sandra and the ArtsEcho team, Lil, Judy, Crystal, Jackie, Arianna, Allison & Liz

artsecho logo blue

Don't forget this Wednesday, July 22 at 7pm we are having the Award Ceremony for the "Roses of Hudson County" photo contest. Great food! Great prizes! Great photos! Great neighbors! Great gallery! Great food! (did I say's all based on roses!)


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