Isn’t it funny to think that there is a whole world of things to hate out there that you don’t even know about? (Or, if you’re so inclined—as I am so tragically not—to love.)
I’ve spent the evening researching ribbon.
I bought a lot of vintage beautiful ribbon at the Hudson Valley Materials Exchange (whose website could so deliciously be read as HV Material Sex Change! Let’s call it that from now on, shall we?) that I’ve been using to tie the pyramid boxes. It’s nice, honest, strong, lovely, unused yet maybe 40-years-old reclaimed ribbon, but it’s a giant pain to thread it through the tiny holes of the boxes. Half of the time it rips the box, the other half if gets loose at the last minute and the box doesn’t close tightly. It’s not slippery enough, it frays too easily, and it’s too thick.
So the ribbon search begins.
Do you know anything about ribbon? I’ve been a devoted Martha Stewart Living reader for about ten years now (did I just let that slip? Oh god.), and Martha is really into ribbon, so you would think I would have picked up something along the way. I can tell lovely grosgrain from trashy curling ribbon, beautiful velvet from icky satin, but apart from that I don’t know shit about ribbon.
Everyone says I should just use cord, preferably an easy-to-thread satin cord, but I just realized that I hate cord. Who knew, right? I don’t think I’ve given cord more than two minutes of thought my entire life, but suddenly I have a visceral hatred of cord. Tying the boxes with cord seems like tying them with a shoelace. Cord is dead to me.
So the search continues. While wading through ribbon site after ribbon site (and of course trying to find eco-friendly ribbon too, which of course makes everything exponentially harder), I discovered that I absolutely loathe all ribbon except grosgrain and velvet.
Sadly, grosgrain is absolutely the wrong kind of ribbon to use for the boxes—its very name means fat! Even worse, I suspect that the neato recycled ribbon I reclaimed at the Materials Exchange is silk grosgrain—which I have no problems with since it’s not new, but which I refuse to buy. And of course velvet is completely wrong for the boxes too —too thick and way, way too expensive.
Megan and Sarah sell a nice biodegradable ribbon that I will soon be using as gift wrapping ribbon, but it’s way too thick for the pyramid boxes. A search on “thin ribbon” has led me to the discovery that the military totally owns that search term for their various medals for killing babies or whatever the fuck the military gives out ribbons for. I found some very nice “eco-grosgrain” ribbon at made-in-china.com. Sigh.
But! Look at this! It starts out thin, then you can untwist it and it gets fluffy and fat! And it all hippie eco-friendly and all that. It’s of course too expensive and will fuck with my profit margins, but it will be the dry-aged steak in the steakhouse, and I will trust that there will be enough vegans coming to dinner to offset the costs.* Anyway, I ordered it. We’ll see. If it’s good, I’ll see if I can get it wholesale.
I’m blown away by having such strong preferences I never knew existed before tonight, but I’m also totally up for the challenge of finding that perfect thin, pretty, hopefully non-planet-rape-y ribbon. It might seem a little silly, but these little bricks are what a meaningful life is made of, in my mind. Caring about every little thing, and learning about every little thing. So what if I just spent two hours researching ribbon? Now I know all about ribbon. And I know that it will mean the difference between looking at the boxes and constantly thinking: “Hot damn, that box is gorgeous,” and “well, I sure saved a lot of money by buying that uglyass curling ribbon.” Who wants to think that for the rest of their life? Ugh, curling ribbon is truly the trailer park of ribbon, is it not?
Vive le grosgrain! And the Eco-Twist? We’ll see.
*Does anyone outside of the restaurant industry understand that analogy? When you—not you, my pretties, you do not go to steakhouses, I know that—go to a steakhouse and order a green salad and baked potato, you are paying exponentially more than your icky friend who dragged you to the steakhouse who ordered a super expensive dry-aged steak. His steak is more expensive on the bill, but proportionally you are paying much more, because the restaurant is charging you ten times more than they paid for your food to offset the fact that they are charging your friend only twice as much. This is why vegans should eat at vegan restaurants!