Check out our latest project!
Here at In Ink, we don't usually get to boast about our projects—this is a ghostwriting firm, after all—but once in a while, we do.
Over the past eighteen months we've worked on It's Hard to Tell When a Tradition Begins ($29.25, Dunn & Co.) with Gary Vaillancourt, founder and owner of Vaillancourt Folk Art. The book commemorates, in part, 35 years of crafting heirloom Christmas products in the charming town of Sutton, Massachusetts. Equal parts memoir, business parable, and love story—Gary and wife Judi have had each other’s back since taking their wedding vows in 1971—the story of Gary’s business has been anything but ordinary. Gary co-wrote the book with me, and I couldn't be happier about sharing the byline.
So, what’s the book about? Judi Vaillancourt revived the art of chalkware ornamentation in the Vaillancourt’s tiny circa-1700s kitchen, where she poured liquid chalk into vintage confectionery molds—Santa casts for candy and chocolate—and painted vibrant images onto the dried pieces. Soon, she was selling these Santas at folk art shows throughout Massachusetts—and selling out almost as soon as she opened her stall!
Judi’s success spurred Gary to quit a lucrative position in the tech industry to focus entirely on Vaillancourt Folk Art. Their charming Colonial-era home served as base of operations—itself as much a part of the business story as the Santa figurines. A feature story in Early American Life in 1988 led to more orders, eventually landing Vaillancourt Folk Art in the historic Manchaug Mills complex in Sutton, where they currently employ a team of twenty artists who make Christmas magic all year long. The company welcomes 20,000 visitors annually from around the world who come to learn about the art of crafting Christmas right here in the United States.
Vaillancourt Folk Art products are entirely made in America, and pieces are found in Bergdorf Goodman, Nordstrom, Neiman Marcus, Colonial Williamsburg, Monticello, Mount Vernon, the American Folk Art Museum in New York, and many other locations across the country.
I'm very proud of Gary's book and even more excited that I get to share it with you. Check out the pictures from the September 20th book launch, held at Vaillancourt HQ.
Are you ready to share your story? Come talk to us and let us help you spread the good word.
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