One of the irresistible vendors at the flower mart is GM Floral. Its second-floor space is a dazzling sea of colorful, fun, unusual and lavish decorative items. Call it party planner nirvana. The ribbon–aisles of it!–gift bags, gift wrap and floral wrap would dress up any gift or flower arrangement. GM is open to the public, but be aware as you shop that the posted prices are wholesale. Retail is 30 percent more. We were so inspired by some of the things we saw, we decided on the spot that Laurel wasn’t going to have any say in the theme for her birthday party next year–we’ve already started shopping for it.
Moskatel’s, across Wall Street, is a block deep and chock-full of what Barbara Hambly would unhesitatingly describe as “more weird crap” (that would be right before she ran amok among the shelves). We were watching our pennies, but we certainly found some things that had to come home with us: fabulous little gift boxes just the right size for a chocolate truffle or two (luckily, I have been tinkering with chocolate truffle recipes), darling organza bags–on a roll! Tidy, efficient and just begging to be transformed into something. One or two Christmas items for next year (80 percent off–what do you think? Are we going to say no? Hardly!).
The Floral Supply Syndicate has locations across the country; its mail order business is strictly wholesale, but on Saturday mornings the Wall Street shop does sell to the public. I was very taken with some lights, perfect–oh, so perfect!–for a science fiction themed party. Unfortunately, my budget precluded my buying them just now. Maybe next time. They carry a huge array of baskets, balloons, dried and preserved items and just about every handy tool you ever wanted and thought didn’t exist. I picked up a dozen 15-inch red tapers (because it will be impossible to find red tapers three days before Valentine’s Day) for 10 bucks. And it’s not really a problem that they’re not quite steady in my candlesticks because FSS also carries a product called Sure Stick Adhesive Clay. My candles will never wobble again. Heck, this product might even make them cat proof. If it does…well, Alice won’t be the only one in Wonderland! I’ll be stunned.