As you may know, we spent all of last week rearranging, cleaning and painting in our Portland location.

We have had the store arranged like this for about 7 years and it was time for a change.

To start we needed to get our carpets cleaned. So, on Day 1 we moved all of our inventory into the back and moved all of our furniture and display fixtures from the front of the store to the back of the store, exposing the very dirty carpets.

After the front half of the store was clean, we flipped the whole store on Day 2 so the back half of the store could have clean carpets like the front of the store.

After the carpets were freshly cleaned (boy did that feel good!) it was time to give some of our displays a fresh coat of paint to brighten everything up. Day 3 and Day 4 were devoted to painting, waiting for paint to dry and then putting the newly painted display fixtures into their new spots in the store.

On Friday we were in the home stretch! We spent all day Friday and much of Saturday reassembling the store putting all of our Maine made products back on the shelves ready for our customers to come in.

And by the end of the day Saturday, Marie and Barb were so exhausted from all the hard work during the week that they decided to have a little fun with the helium in leftover Valentine’s Day balloons they found when cleaning.

And here’s the blooper….

We work hard but we play hard too. Come see all our hard work and the fresh new look!

 

 


If you are from Midcoast Maine, know about local Maine artists or have an affinity children’s book authors who also illustrate their own work, you have probably heard of Dahlov Ipcar. After 99 years of creative life, Ipcar passed on February 10, 2017. She was painting that morning. Dahlov was such an inspiration in my childhood that her passing has made me very reminiscent.

My first job was as Page in the Children’s Room at the Patten Free Library. I remember being a child and sitting in the Children’s Room and it felt so big and bright and colorful with its antelopes, cheetahs and zebras prancing across the big walls. That was the beginning of my appreciation of Dahlov Ipcar.

I was so thankful that after construction was done and many updates to the functionality of the library were improved the vivid mural was still hung throughout the Children’s Room walls.

The Ipcar presence is strong in Bath, Maine. The statue in Library Park – “The Spirit of the Sea” was done by Dahlov Ipcar’s father, William Zorach. It’s a landmark in Maine that is known to people from all over the country. With Dahlov’s mural hanging in the Children’s Room and her books available for checkout from the library, you can be completely absorbed and inspired by the creativity of this family.

Lisa-Marie’s has carried Dahlov’s children’s books for many years. Sometimes we are even lucky enough to have a booksiging with the author and/or illustrator. In Dahlov’s case, she is both. Dahlov was doing book-signings well into her 80’s and though they became fewer and further between she was able to come to Lisa-Marie’s. Once, Andy even picked her up at her home in Georgetown and drove her into Bath. While she was signing, she requested a piece of good chocolate to help her through the signing – something Lisa-Marie was pleased to provide. Lisa-Marie’s still carries a variety of Dahlov’s children’s books.


We are thankful for the fond memories that we shared with Dahlov and for the the many wonderful books and paintings that she left us to enjoy for generations to come.

~Marie


Last weekend was the Annual Autumnfest in Bath, Maine. A fun event for the whole family that provided entertainment of all kinds. There was Giant Jenga, Gourd Tic Tac Toe, Corn Toss, Pumpkin Ring Toss and Pumpkin Bowling.

Corn Toss

Corn Toss

Giant Jenga

Giant Jenga

 

 

Gourd Tic Tac Toe

Gourd Tic Tac Toe

Pumpkin Ring Toss

Pumpkin Ring Toss

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Oakie the Acorn visited Lisa-Marie's and found a little fan.

Oakie the Acorn visited Lisa-Marie’s and found a little fan.

The Maine Marimba Ensemble provided wonderful music that echoed all over Front Street. You would catch people in the shops dancing along without even realizing it.

After the Maine Marimba Ensemble played, the wonderful judges from Main Street Bath (who resembled some friendly characters off of the Yellow Brick Road) were there to award Lisa-Marie’s Made in Maine with “The Most Hilarious Scarecrow” Award.

We were very proud of our fun LobsterMoose Scarecrow and our store managers couldn’t pass up the opportunity to pose with him.

Bath store manager, Katy poses with our award and LobsterMoose Scarecrow

Bath store manager, Katy poses with our award and LobsterMoose Scarecrow

"Most Hilarious Scarecrow Display" Award

“Most Hilarious Scarecrow Display” Award

Scarecrow Contest Judges - Dorothy, Scarecrow, Lion, Tin Man

Scarecrow Contest Judges – Dorothy, Scarecrow, Lion, Tin Man

Portland store manager, joined the Bath staff for Autumnfest and couldn't resist hamming it up with our LobsterMoose Scarecrow

Portland store manager, joined the Bath staff for Autumnfest and couldn’t resist hamming it up with our LobsterMoose Scarecrow

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Make sure you join us in Bath for next years Autumnfest. As you can see, the City of ships knows how to have fun for the whole family!


Each year the Convention and Visitors Bureau hosts a day for “Frontline Employees” in the Portland area. These people consist of retail, hospitality, restaurant employees among others. Lots of the different tours that are offered in Portland will offer complimentary tours to these Frontline Employees to help educate them about what Portland has to offer its visitors. There were representatives from Portland Downtown, Rising Tide Brewery, The Children’s Museum and Theatre of Maine, Casco Bay Lines, The Portland Science Center, Downeast Duck Adventures, The Maine Brew Bus, Portland Discovery Land and Sea Tours and Maine Foodie Tours.

Marie and Barb were able to grab two of the last spots on the Maine Foodie Tour while Lisa-Marie and Lindsay were able to snag a ride on the Portland Discovery Trolley. What a beautiful day it was to be walking around and exploring Downtown Portland!

 

The Maine Foodie Tour began at Two Fat Cats Bakery. They make fresh blueberry pie and whoopie pies daily and Marie and Barb got to taste a freshly baked whoopie pie. If you have never had a whoopie pie before (or even if you have) then you should get to Two Fat Cats ASAP and take your tastebuds on a delectable journey. But get there early in the day, once they sell out they are gone and you’ll have to try again the next day.

 

After the delicious whoopie pies and to fend off the impending sugar crash the next stop on the tour was Arabica Coffee. The tour was taken into the back of the roasters and shown how the coffee is roasted in small batches. It was educational and the coffee that was given out was so smooth and delicious that Marie didn’t even need to add cream!

 

After Arabica, the tour was led to the other end of Commercial Street to Veracious, a specialty spice and rub shop. The owners spent years sailing around the world and after deciding to settle on Portland they wanted to open a shop selling all of the different flavors and tastes that they had discovered on their travels. A Lobster Mac N Cheese was made and some salts and seasonings were set out to sample.

 

The tour ended at Vena’s Fizz House. After a short history of how bitters have been used through time the tour guests were treated to a specialty bitters drink that isn’t even offered on their regular menu. The owner of Vena’s answered people’s questions about the evolution of tonics and the different ways they are used today.

 

All in all, it was a successful day for the Portland staff. With the amount of questions that are asked regarding what people should do with their time in Portland it’s great to have some first-hand experience about what is available and what suggestions we might have as locals.

 


One of our favorite things to do is help people create gift baskets. Usually we are asked to create a basket or two or even three but when we had an inquiry for EIGHTEEN we got excited.

The customer wanted to put together gift baskets that incorporated some local beer as well as a plethora of made in Maine items. Marie had so much fun helping her select her items and creating these gift baskets that she took step by step photos of the whole process. Right down to delivery to the Press Hotel up the street from our Exchange Street location

The baskets featured two bottles of Allagash Beer from the Craft Beer Cellar on Commercial Street, a candle from Primitive Keeper, soap from Casco Bay Soap Company, Chocolate Covered Blueberries, a slate coaster in the shape of Maine, and a jar of blueberry jam.


Logo_Nominee

Six years ago on April 1 was our first day being open on Exchange Street in the Old Port. It has been an exciting six years and we are proud to be providing Portland with a place to buy Maine made products. In the Portland Phoenix every year there are “The Best of Portland Nominations”. This year we have been nominated! We couldn’t think of a better way to celebrate our six year anniversary in Portland!

We are listed under the Shopping section under Maine Made. There are some wonderful businesses and organizations to vote for in many different categories and we hope that you will vote for Lisa-Marie’s under the Maine Made section. Thank-you Portland Phoenix for the nomination and Congratulations to all the other wonderful nominees who work so hard to promote Portland’s local economy. Thank-you to the city of Portland for the love and support the past six years. We’re in love with you too. #lovelisamariesBlog_04182016_Vote

 


It’s amazing how resourceful Mainers are. We use EVERYTHING! Right down to the shells of our seafood. That’s right, we have lots of different items that are made from recycled lobster shells, mussel shells, and oyster shells as well as many other unique Maine findings.

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Springtime means gardens are being planted and farmers markets are in full force. Don’t get caught without your Hod basket!

Wait, what is a Hod basket you say? Only one of the greatest carrying contraptions around! Let me back up….

Garden Hod

Have you ever dug clams? If you are from Maine chances are you have or you know someone who has. It’s a lot of work! You have to dig down into the mud flats in your thigh-high boots and your super-long gloves hoping that your fingers will find the shells protecting those delicious creatures of the sea. If you’re lucky you’ll be able to gather a peck of them but they’ll be covered in all that mud. Clams need to be purged, to get rid of as much of the sand as possible before they are ready for cooking.

The Hod basket was created for just this. It is a wooden handled, wire basket (wire similar to lobster trap wire) that comes in two sizes – Small, which holds one peck of clams, and Large, which holds two pecks.  Clam diggers fill their Hod baskets and then purge their clams right in them by running clean water through the clams and letting the sandy water run out the bottom of the basket. That’s yankee ingenuity at it’s finest!

Now maybe you don’t dig for clams on the regular but if you have a vegetable garden, these baskets are invaluable. No one likes to track in soil from the garden into their kitchen. Use your Hod basket by filling it with your freshly picked garden-fresh goodies and letting all the loose soil fall out the bottom. Then before you even go inside, rinse them off with your hose and voila – freshly picked, freshly cleaned vegetables all in a convenient basket, ready to go inside.

We’ve had rave reviews for these Hod baskets from customers and many have found a multiple of uses for them. Collect kindling for a fire, store magazines or toilet paper in your bathroom, keep your potatoes from rolling around in your pantry by storing them in the basket for easy retrieval, catch your mail as it comes into the house, or even starting seedlings inside to be transferred outside. The uses are innumerable.

Do you have a Hod basket? What do you use it for?