The Women of Phidon

I feel so fortunate to be surrounded by such strong women in my life – not only my daughter, my mom, my sister, and my best friend, but also so many girlfriends and all the absolutely wonderful women that I work with day in, day out. They have given me so much support and love over the years, and I am forever grateful. I have drawn much inspiration from all of them and they have shaped my life in so many little ways.

Elsa, our inks and paper wiz! (Image courtesy of Daniel Shen)

Elsa, our inks and paper wiz! (Image courtesy of Daniel Shen)

I am sure you have all seen and met Elsa from our store, whether it is at our many events or at the annual pen show in Toronto. She has been working with us here at Phidon for the past one and a half years. Recently, she finished her Masters in Architecture here in Cambridge and now has moved to Toronto to pursue a career in Architecture. This is absolutely wonderful for her. I am so proud of her and wish her all the best.  Her time here at Phidon meant a lot to us: her loyalty, her steadfast work ethic and her enormous knowledge of pen, inks and paper have been an incredible addition to Phidon. While I always looked forward to being able to take my day off when she comes in, I will be sad to not be in the store with her. I will miss her ever smiling presence in the store. Nonetheless, I’m glad Elsa is staying with us to work behind the scenes, and so in some ways, she will always be present at Phidon. She will continue to manage our Facebook page and develop our website. Of course, you will still see her at the many events we hope to host this year.

Our teachers presented a fun calligraphy demonstration during our anniversary event in 2018. (Image courtesy of  Anne-Marie Rodger )

Our teachers presented a fun calligraphy demonstration during our anniversary event in 2018. (Image courtesy of Anne-Marie Rodger)

Over the course of the year, I am also fortunate to have the opportunity to spend time with our very talented teachers: Aline, Kata, Anne-Marie and Carolyn. These ladies bring more than just a wealth of knowledge to Phidon in all the classes they run here. With Kata and Anne-Marie, we get relaxed spontaneity and creativity, putting everyone at ease for what is always a fun workshop. With Aline and Carolyn, we get patient guidance and encouragement, making sure everyone is able to produce beautiful work no matter how troublesome the letters may be. Each of these ladies bring a unique method to their teaching, but all are equally supportive of their students in their creative journey. Its with great humility and pleasure that I can say I am so lucky to have them here and that I get to share in some time with them whenever they visit.

To the many girlfriends I have–the many cups of tea and coffee, as well as the conversations about our families, our parents, and the world around us that you have shared with me at Phidon–thank you for helping to create and maintain this amazing and supporting community. We can’t solve all of the problems but we can certainly share in each others joys and grief. It’s so important to me that we are there to lift up each other. This is what makes Phidon such a beautiful place to be.

So a big cheers to all the women, that have allowed me in their hearts and let me be a small part of their lives. I am thankful for all of you.