Women shopped, decorated cards and took part in personal photo shoots Monday night at Cactus Flower's Vintage Valentine’s Day event.
Throughout the two-hour crafting session, women used materials to create their personalized Valentine's cards. Doilies, cards with floral patterns, paper hearts and even a special cupid sticker from the ’60s were provided.
“I wanted to do vintage cards because there’s a sweetness about vintage cards,” Cactus Flower owner Amanda Franklin said. “I’m a former art teacher, so these classes are a little way I can still craft and teach, just in a more relaxed and fun atmosphere.”
No prior skills or crafting expertise were required for the event, Franklin said. She walked around and offered her help throughout the session.
In addition to crafting, people browsed the store, looking at both new and vintage items. With the purchase of their ticket, attendees received $10 off a purchase of $35 or more during the event.
One of the women, Brielle Stark, said she knew she would take full advantage of the discount. She loved getting to try on trendy and fun clothes and shop locally, she said.
“I think shopping local is really important,” Stark said. “You can see a lot of things that don’t make it to chain stores and oftentimes it is more sustainable, especially with vintage.”
While searching for the perfect outfit to buy, some women also sought a vintage outfit to use in a mini photo shoot. Attendees had the opportunity to dress up in vintage clothing, including wedding dresses, and have their pictures taken by a professional photographer.
“I really like the vintage clothing,” assistant manager Gabby Kriegle said. “We have lots of frilly, bow things like formal wear from the '40s and '50s and stuff, which I think is the coolest.”
At the end of the night, each person was able to take a digital copy of their professional photo and at least one decorated card home.
Franklin hosts one event in her store monthly, and she said this one seemed like the perfect opportunity to create something meaningful for Valentine’s Day.
“I try to think of authentic events that people would enjoy,” Franklin said.
Sara Thornbury, owner of Pure Barre in Bloomington, said she came to not only enjoy the crafting, shopping and socializing but also to support another local business.
“I own a local business, and therefore I know if we all support each other, we can just thrive and build up our community,” Thornbury said.