Friday, December 30, 2011

Twilight in Little Washington

I was standing outside in front of our shop & gallery recently and snapped this picture.  I love twilight in December, especially here. With unseasonably warm weather throughout the month we often had our door open during the day. As I write this, the temperature is now in the 20's and it now feels like winter in Virginia.

As 2011 comes to a close and a New Year begins, good feelings and memories come forward. As any small business owner will tell you it has been a rough road these past two years, but things are looking up.  This year we added several new artists to our gallery representation and more European products to the shop mix.  We organized benefits, several shop events and an Art Tour, and basically worked our little tails off to make the year enjoyable and fun for us and our clientele. It is a labor of love.

To all of our wonderful customers throughout the United States, to our talented artists, fabulous suppliers, loving neighbors, blog-followers, and to all fellow small-business-owners in Rappahannock, we wish each one of you a joyful, healthy and prosperous New Year!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Year-End Sale - 20%-70% Off

Yes, You've All Been
Very Good This Year...

Eiffel Tower's time to be rewarded with our Biggest Sale of the Year!
20% - 70% OFF 
Dec. 26 - 31

Table Linens, Art, Rugs, Lamps, Purses, Jewelry, Scarves, Soaps, Lotions, Books, Holiday Decor,
and more!

in-store only

phone orders accepted 540.675.1411 


For 14 years we've celebrated the coming of new and delicious merchandise with an unbelievable After-Christmas Sale. It's long been our customers favorite time to get fabulous & final deals in our shop and gallery on Main Street. 

Come out to Little Washington, VA, between Dec. 26 - 31, 10am - 6pm, and see what all the fuss is about....we think you'll love it! Mention this blog post and receive an extra 10% off already discounted merchandise.  Phone orders also accepted. See you there!

r. h.  b a l l a r d     307 main street    washington, va  22747    540-675-1411     shop & gallery hours: daily, 10am - 6pm

Saturday, December 17, 2011

The Eiffel Tower Lights Up

 It's Christmas and like millions of people I too have a sweet place in my heart for Paris, the Eiffel Tower and anything French.

Paris always looks romantic this time of year, and I clearly remember the first time I saw the Eiffel Tower light up in all it's glory. I was eating dinner with friends near the Tower and had to excuse myself from the table. Outside a dramatic display of light and color was exploding and it had been sparkling through the restaurant window onto my plate of foie gras. The meal was delicious but the lights were beckoning. I stood in the freezing cold for several minutes until the sparkling stopped.

I am not sure why the Eiffel Tower has this effect on me and so many people around the world, I only know that it does.

Anyway, the cool and industrial Parisienne pieces in the photo above arrived on Friday and I could not wait to get the display up and running. After previously mapping out several ideas on paper I had decided that the front of the shop would work best for what I envisioned.

The single, rustic P-A-R-I-S letters add charm and fun, and the delightfully glistening Eiffel Tower makes a romantic statement.  I surrounded the Tower with red pomegranate branches, dwarf lemon cypresses (which smell divine), and small vintage prints of the Tower.  Red, green, lights, and art....the iconic monument and all decoration poise beautifully in front of an architectural window and next to our silver and white decorated Christmas tree. I loved creating this display. It's the first thing you see now as you now step into our shop at Christmas time.

I invite all of you to come and visit Little Washington, VA.  It's truly the best time to visit our historic town and our shop.  Hope to see you soon!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Free Shipping Until Dec. 19th!

Open Door at Ballards
Free Shipping on All Website Orders Through Dec. 19th ONLY
20% Off  
All In-Store
Holiday Decor, Ornaments, Cards


Open Every Day
10am - 6pm
Phone Orders Accepted 

r. h.  b a l l a r d     307 main street    washington, va  22747    540-675-1411
shop & gallery hours: daily, 10am - 6pm

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Big Parade in Little Washington

 It was an amazing, warm, clear-skies day in Little Washington, VA.  Shop doors were wide open, tons of kiddies were treated to holiday sweets and goodies, and each child received a toy from Santa. The two Artisan Markets were jammed with holiday shoppers and Ben "Cooter" Jones' Garage Band rocked out in Stoneyman Square.

If you've never been to our small town parade you don't know what you are missing. It was the biggest yet for a 2-street town, with over 40 parade participant organizations. The small-town feel is wonderful, personal and warm. It's been likened to a Currier and Ives portrait, and that is pretty accurate. I look forward to it every year.

For our shop and gallery this is one of the busiest shopping days of the year so we were ready. We were also hosting a fabulous benefit for the Rappahannock High School Band, which was very well attended and which raised much need funds for the band.  We are in a "tiny" town (pop. 175), so when a few hundred people descend upon us we really notice.

Here are some images I took of this festive day.  

Camels were actually on parade for the first time. A camel on Main street was a sight to see.

Dr. Seuss' character Cindy Lou Who from Whoville

The Soap Box Derby Float with Rudolf was the biggest one yet.

Santa and Mrs. Claus rode in a Horse Drawn Carriage

Beautifully decorated Horses and Riders

US Army Fife and Drum Corp.

Rappahannock High School Panther Band


Mysterious Horse Rider on Main Street

Dwight MacNeil from Red Truck Bakery handed out some delicious brownies to the crowd.

A Pink Smiling Piggy

Rappahannock High School Student Conductor keeping the band on time in front of our shop.

Big Smokey the Bear rode on top of the Washington Fire Dept. truck.

Anne Robertson played one of Santa's helpers during the day's festivities.
ABC Newsman Gordon Peterson rode in Ben "Cooter" Jones famous GENERAL LEE.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

CD Signing Benefit Party at R.H. Ballard

CD Cover

DEC. 4th, 2:00 - 4:00pm 
Come out and Support the Rappahannock High School Band at a CD Signing Benefit Party! 
 Meet & greet COL John R. Bourgeois (USMC) Ret.,  former Director of "The President's Own"
United States Marine Band & also 

the Grand Marshall of  
"Christmas in Little Washington" Parade
COL Bourgeois will be signing copies of his new CD

Profits from CD Sales Benefit the RHS Band! 

RHS Panther Band marching in Parade

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Winners of Our Holiday Giveaways!

We had a blast doing this special Thanksgiving Weekend promotion in the shop. There were almost 100 entries and the final drawing was on Monday, Nov. 28th, with Jan Clatterbuck (of the Rappahannock News) doing the honors of picking the winners out of our big shop jar. 

 Congratulations to all 5 winners of our 
Thanksgiving Weekend Giveaways!

Sarah Green, Sperryville, VA: 
Grand Prize, Le Jacquard Francais "Sari" Tablecloth, 69" Square

Diane MacPherson, Washington, VA:  
Set of 4 Le Jacquard Francais "Sari" Napkins

Joanne Brennan, Jeffersonton, VA:  
Set of 2 Le Jacquard Francais Tea Towels, "Manosque" Strawberry

Paul Smith, Washington, DC:
Ted Pellagatta Photography Book

Fran Krebser, Flint Hill, VA: 
Rappahannock Granite Soap Dish

Monday, November 28, 2011

Vintage Smith & Co: Cool Art Gifts

We are now carrying a very cool group of vintage reproduction prints from an art company in San Francisco, Vintage Smith & Company.

They specialize in original, vintage, and reproduction vintage artwork including photographs, postcards, book plates, photogravures, maps, collage, and other works on paper evoking simpler times. These are an amazing and inexpensive art gift this holiday season, from $32. - $36. each.

My favorite pieces are the Nest with Blue Egg, Eiffel Tower, b&w vintage print of forks and spoons, and the Steinlein-inspired kittens sleeping with attentive mice & birds milling about. They also produce Signs of Wisdom, and my favorite is "Leap and the net will appear."

The cost is $32. - $36. each, and each piece is made in a black metal frame, glass, and hung with a quality cream-colored satin ribbon. Call for details or to order. Supply is limited.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Shop Small Business Saturday
at R.H. Ballard Shop & Gallery

Earn $25. from American Express
when you make a purchase
of $25. or more at R.H. Ballard on

Use your American Express card
online or in our Main Street shop
on Saturday, Nov. 26th only
to receive this offer.

Register your card through
American Express here to be eligible and to learn more about this 
national event. 


Shop Small Logo 
r. h.  b a l l a r d     307 main street    washington, va  22747    540-675-1411
shop & gallery hours: daily, 10am - 6pm

Shop To Win At R.H. Ballard!

Thanksgiving Weekend Promotions!
Nov. 25 - 27 

Christmas Tree at Ballard's

Shop at Ballard's This Weekend and 

Enter a Chance To Win!*

French Tablecloth $215.
French Tablecloth 

Set of French Napkins $90.

2 French Tea Towels $48.
French Tea Towel 

Ted Pellagatta Photography Book $45.

Rappahannock Granite Soap Dish $59.



*Offer in-shop only Nov. 25-27, one entry per customer with purchase of $25. or more. Five winners will be chosen at a drawing on Monday, Nov. 28th and notified through email/phone.
r. h.  b a l l a r d     307 main street    washington, va  22747    540-675-1411
shop & gallery hours: daily, 10am - 6pm

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Unique Christmas Ornaments
at R.H. Ballard

 Look inside your ornament decoration box this year and you'll probably find many ornaments that you can attach to a particular person, place, time or family memory. Christmas ornaments are often given as a memory-gift ("this reminded me of you and our trip to....") or for adding to an existing home collection that has been lovingly collected since childhood.

Our fun and fabulous Christmas tree this year is filled with fun, quirky and artful pieces that make me smile. Some traditional, but many non-traditional designs. I really had too much fun decorating our tree this year. I think I love the spouting whales as much as the Eiffel Tower globes!

There were so many new designs to choose from this year.
If you are interested in any of these lovely pieces just give us a call at the shop!
The ornaments go fast so we do not post them on our website.

Here are just a few of our ornaments to get you in the Christmas spirit!
Which one of these designs speak to you?

Eiffel Tower Globe

Bejeweled Bug
Mercury Orb with Rhinestones
Glass Urchin
Roaring Brown Bear
Mercury Christmas Tree
Spouting Silvery Whale

Big Wolf Head

 White Horse in the Snow
Silver Lobster

Polar Bear Globe
 Recycled Tin Woven Star