Howdy to everyone in the Rural Women Rock community! Thanks, Kasse, for this great way to meet more women and be inspired by their lives.
We’re Suzanne and Tracy, the girls @ Rusted Gingham. We are birds of a feather (sisters-in-law), we stick together (friends), and one of us wishes she was as tall as the other.
We host the annual barn sale the first Saturday of November, in Gonzales, Texas. Barn sale is the place to find vintage, antique, unique, handmade, remade, or otherwise made stuff. It’s become a wildly successful event that is loads of fun and always delivers the goods.
Our desire to spend time doing things we love, find ways to spend time with family, and honor God in all we do fueled Suzanne’s enthusiasm for hosting the first barn sale at her place outside Gonzales, Texas. Suzanne loves to be with a crowd and is so gifted at pulling one together and making everyone feel at home. That’s what happened in November 2008 at the first barn sale. She invited friends and family to her barn, and it has become an annual event ever since.
One of the joys in hosting this sale is meeting lots of other women (and a few men) who are so talented, adventuresome, and eager to encourage the creativity in others. We are always amazed at how someone can take an idea and create something totally new from it. We share inspiration, little crafty secrets, and lots of positive encouragement with all our vendors and customers. They bring amazing goods to the sale. Just look!
Every year we find more awesome ladies we want to invite to the sale. After three years we outgrew the barn at Suzanne’s and moved to a huge show barn in Gonzales. Lots more space, lots more vendors, LOTS more customers! Over 1000 folks shopped the sale this year. We couldn’t believe it! It was a dream come true for two girls who worked all year long to try and pull it off!
We believe in dreams, hard work, and partnering up with great people. We’ve met tons of women who are either making a living doing this or are enjoying it as a hobby in free time. It’s so great to share the fun of life with other like-minded people. (go meet our 2011 vendors here)
Suzanne Sexton Designs makes it possible for her to home school her kids and do a little playing without breaking the budget! She regularly takes orders for her famous sugar cookies and fabulous cakes. Along with that comes lots of event catering and home decorating. She is so at home in the kitchen!
Suzanne married a full-time county extension agent whose passion is breeding quality Hereford and Angus cattle and, not surprisingly, firing up the grill! As a family, they love to tube down the Frio River and go to as many rodeos as possible.
Suzanne’s home is seldom quiet as it is usually filled with people. Always decorated appropriate to the season, you’ll find her home warmly welcomes everyone. And depending on the day of the week, you might have to squeeze in next to a few layers of fresh baked cakes or clear the counter of cookies in order to make room for your iced tea. (this is never a burden)
Tracy’s home is nestled in the oak trees of a small community east of San Antonio, Texas. She’s mostly a city girl who has found herself enjoying the quiet, peaceful life the country affords. She is home schooling her two girls for the first time this year and is surprised at how fulfilling teaching at home has become.
Tracy met her husband while at Dallas Theological Seminary and joined with him in the desire to be available for full-time ministry. Her husband currently teaches junior high and pastors a local church. Ministry has taken many forms over the past 20 years, and now, for Tracy, she finds God leading her to focus on her family at home.
Tracy spends lots of her creative energy designing stuff with one of her best friends, her computer! She is the life line to all our graphic designs, advertising, blogging, and technology stuff. With no formal training, she learned the little picky details of blogging, photoshopping, facebook, and loves to use her creativity this way. Her contribution to Rusted Gingham has made it possible for us to communicate with thousands of people without costing an arm and a leg! (just an occasional chocolate cake keeps her happy).
We girls decided, independently of each other, that we wanted to make the necessary financial and personal sacrifices in order to be available to our kids as they grew up. This has meant leaving full-time careers and taking up space with our kids at home. We planned, and God has provided for our families and given us more than we need at the end of each day.
We use our hands and our hearts to fulfill our God-given talents and gifts, and we see Him return the blessings. Our kids join in on our annual barn sale, and they have become our biggest fans! They might be among the youngest vendors, but they hold their own at the barn!
We love to teach them the real stuff of life while it’s happening. They soak it all up and keep growing up right before our eyes. Four little cousins, enjoying running in wide open spaces, getting the best of their moms, and loving every chance they get to play together. That’s great family life!
We met 13 years ago when Tracy married Suzanne’s brother. Six months later, Suzanne was married and we’ve been sisters ever since. We both love sweet tea, aprons, shopping in Warrenton, Texas, and making sweet memories. Both of us are strong women, a little bossy sometimes, quick to tear up in tender moments, and thankful for our patient, soft-spoken husbands! We are compatible, but we aren’t totally alike. Take a look.
We never know what tomorrow holds, but we know we can purpose to follow Christ and He will lead us. So we keep making the time that matters most. We dream and we plan and we hold it all loosely. And we pick up a few pieces of vintage goodness along the way!
We'd love to meet you and get to know all you other rural women! Your stories inspire us and we hope you might be inspired by ours. Follow us on facebook, sign up to receive emails, or just stop by the blog anytime. We'll be there, sharing recipes, stories, projects, pictures, and whatever seems to fit at the time.
Suzanne and Tracy