A post swept under the rug for too long

The Granville Island Broom Co. finally gets its due

When a photographer says to someone, "I'll get you some pictures, I promise," that usually translates, roughly, into "Hell will have frozen over for a million years before I get around to emailing you these images." It's the nature of the beast, sadly. You get home, you unwind, you download cards a week later, the slip of paper with a scribbled email goes through the wash, or ends up on the floor of your car, or gets mixed in with your electricity bill. And just a few weeks after you've made that earnest promise to a stranger you're scratching your head, thinking, wasn't I supposed to email some pictures to somebody?

And so I stand here today humbly asking the forgiveness of the kind folks at the Granville Island Broom Co. in Vancouver, British Columbia. It was almost exactly two years ago that I wandered into their very, very cool place of business. I was in town to shoot a wedding in Tofino, several hours of driving north, and was killing time wandering the great markets on the island. That's when I spotted the shop filled with the most beautiful brooms you'll ever lay eyes on.

I know what you're thinking: brooms aren't usually beautiful. Useful, industrial, bare bones. Just not beautiful. But sisters Mary and Sarah Schweiger, who learned their craft from their parents, don't make the kind of brooms you find at the hardware store. Their handcrafted work looks to be straight out of Hogwarts rather than Home Depot. With partner Jory Bojm, the trio spends all day making brooms the same way they might have been made two hundred years ago. Forget about smooth, straight handles; the most sought-after of Granville Broom Co.'s work feature driftwood the three women import from all over the world, as twisty and crooked as your imagination hopes it would be.

I, like every other tourist who wanders in, was smitten. In fact, I found myself mumbling "Fair is foul, foul is fair, hover through the fog and filthy air" as I walked through the shop.

I took some pictures and promised I'd put them on the blog. That never happened. Oh, well. The best laid plans, right? Better late than never.

If you read this, Granville Island Broom folks, I hope you'll accept my apology for the lateness of this post. As we begin the hellish task of repopulating our new website with old content from the past couple of years, I thought this was a perfect chance to make my mea culpa!

And if any of you guys take a trip to Vancouver, don't miss out. (they ship, too.) The Granville Island Broom Co. is one of those places that make you long for the days of products that are crafted my humans, made to last, and are things of beauty.


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