Classic Seaside Accessories from The Brimfield Fair

Sail away at Brimfield Fair

One of our favorite things to do is peruse thrift stores, vintage shops and antique shows for coveted treasures from (or inspired by) the sea. And we have quite a collection growing! However, there’s always room for more. That’s why our second favorite thing to do is to shop finds put up for sale by other savvy scavengers. And it just so happens we heard from a new friend yesterday who found some adorable belt buckles from the Brimfield Fair.

Designer and boutique owner of The Pink Pineapple, Stacie Hall was fortunate to find these buckles –  one spells out “SAIL” and the other is a Whale buckle that says “Save the Whales”  ($38 each, buckle only). She is making them available in her store but tells us there is a limited supply – only about a dozen of each.  These will be available online today, but you better hurry!

"Save the Whales" Photo courtesy Stacie Hall

We can’t wait to hear what other treasures folks find at this May’s  Brimfield Fair. For those of you not familiar. The Brimfield Fair is a very popular antiques fair held a few times a year in Massachussetts. It is thought to be “one of the top three flea markets” in the U.S., according to Frommers. A tradition since 1959, more than 700 exhibitors offer their wares. The Brimfield Fair opens to the public this weekend, starting at 8am Friday ($5 admission fee) and continues Saturday (free admission).  If you can’t make it this weekend, no worries, you can try again in July and September. In the meantime, thanks to Stacie Hall for giving the rest of us an opportunity to scoop up one of her great finds!

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What’s an Oyster Spat?

From Spat to Oyster.

From Spat to Oyster.

If you’re a fan of oysters, then you may be interested to know that all that goodness starts with an oyster spat. What’s that you say? It’s a baby oyster, of course! Not only is the baby oyster special, but there happens to be an entire celebration to honor the little guy. 

If you happen to be in the Florida Panhandle this weekend, consider dropping by the 4th annual Oyster Spat Festival on St. George Island (SGI). Admittedly, we are somewhat biased at 365Beach because SGI happens to be one of our favorite beaches for family vacations. (Okay, okay…we love ALL beaches, but we really do frequent SGI quite a bit!)  Whether you’ve been before or not, this is a great time of year to visit this quiet, laid-back island. During this year’s festival, which takes place October 10, you’ll get a good sampling of life on SGI. The celebration starts with a 5k race, followed by the official Oyster Spat Parade (if it’s anything like the July 4the parade, you’re in for a treat). There’s also a treasure hunt, fishing tournament and, of course, the oyster shucking contest.

Feel like you need more information about the whole baby oyster situation before you honor it?  Here’s some interesting background information on this creature and it’s journey through life (courtesy of the SGI Oyster Spat Festival website).

It all starts with the culmination of the ideal conditions. Depending upon the salt content and temperature of the water, the oyster spawns as either a male of female. The eggs, which look like a milky cloud, are normally released on an ebbing tide. An oyster sheds and average of one million eggs, on which small fish feed. The fertilized eggs float 7-18 days before settling, if they are not eaten by a predator first. (Life is  always filled with struggles no matter who or what you are!) In spite of its miniscule size, each larva has a tiny shell complete with muscle and a foot. Once its swimming stage is over, the larva extends its foot, settles on any solid object it can find, and cements itself into place. At this stage it is known as an oyster spat. Once they are anchored into place, an oyster spat will grow it’s shells.

Thankfully, the Oyster Spat is determined and from it comes wonderful things for all of us. What are you waiting for? Let’s start celebrating!

Can’t make it to Florida this weekend? No worries. The baby oyster’s more mature stage is also being honored at the annual Wellfleet OysterFest in Wellfleet, Massachusetts on Oct. 18 and 19. So raise your shuckers, ‘er or your glass, and make a toast to the Oyster Spat!