One Girl's Treasure hosts local artists and connects with the Grand Rapids community
/Photo by Erin Quackenbush
One Girl's Treasure is an eclectic women's resale clothing store located on Lyon Street.
You might be surprised to walk into a women’s resale clothing store on a Friday evening and find not just fashionable used clothing, but also art, appetizers, and a crowd of art enthusiasts. However, if you are walking into downtown's clothing resale shop One Girl’s Treasure, art is what you will find. One Girl’s Treasure has been hosting bi-monthly artist showcases as a way to show off the store’s artistic side. Store owner Haylea Grey opens the doors of the store to both experienced artists and new artists who might not get a chance to show their art elsewhere. The artist showcases are a result of Grey’s passions and goals for the store.
“I have three things I’m very passionate about: fashion and resale – particularly with a vintage or retro slant -, music and art,” Grey remarked.
In many ways, the vibe of the showcase is in the artists' hands. Artists can help choose what kind of food they would like to offer and what music is played. The artist can also help advertise for the event, so the size of the crowd varies depending on the artist. The store windows feature artwork as well as mannequins whose outfits are chosen to match the artistic feel of the art. Artwork is placed throughout the store so customers can browse both the art and the resale clothing during the showcase.
The most recent showcase, on Friday September 30th, featured art by photographer Jim Gebben. Gebben owns his own business, Jim Gebben Photography
, where he specializes in many genres including portraits, advertising, and architecture. Gebben’s artwork showcased in the store features large canvas photos of gnomes complete with moss, bark, ivy and grapevine detailing. Gebben appreciates the opportunity to show his art to people who might not have seen it otherwise.
“I think that's what sets it apart from a gallery for instance is that you get people to come and see the work who may not go to galleries much. They come in and there it is. Artwork. Some may go right past it but to others it’s a refreshing surprise,” said Gebben.
Gebben has done multiple shows at One Girl’s Treasure and the way he approaches a showcase has evolved over time.
“When I did my first show of the little people’s photography I decided to do a shop window. I mean what a great way to put your work out to the masses, that's my goal. One rainy night I did my first window and attached every Fisher Price toy I own, which is extensive, to the walls and ceiling of the window. It looked great at night.”
Gebben’s unique art is just one example of how One Girl’s Treasure opens its doors to the local art community. The art showcases fit with the store's eclectic vibe and broad cutomer demographic. The store aims to create a unique artistic image for itself while connecting with the Grand Rapids art scene and allowing local artists to have their chance to shine.
Erin is a junior at Grand Valley State University studying professional writing and non-profit administration. She enjoys reading, writing, and working with kids.