This summer, we put the “Post” in Purcell Trading and took our antiques and handmade art to sell at the Livingston Farmer’s Market. The only thing we needed in order to shade us from the hot and dry sun, and keep our goods out of Montana’s unannounced and shifty weather patterns, was a tent. Now, a pop-up tent purchased from a big retailer would make sense for efficiency’s sake, but wouldn’t exactly align with our brand, aesthetic, or our ethics.
In case you already weren't aware, one similarity Jeff and I have personally, and one of the biggest things that drives Purcell Trading, is our aesthetic for anything rustic, old and simple. The thought of a cheap, plastic tent framing our antiques and handmade goods didn't sit right. We decided that there was only one thing to do… go to the nearest forest and harvest lodge poles to make a canvas wall tent.
Eager for the challenge and the opportunity to spend time in the mountains with our dog, Timber, we got right to work and drove down valley to Pine Creek. We spent the day hiking, sawing, exploring, and carrying carefully selected dead and downed pines back to the truck.
We worked efficiently, taking turns to scout and saw. When all the poles were gathered together, we took a break to hike up trail to the falls. Along the way, a Two-Tailed Tiger Swallowtail Butterfly landed on Jeff’s shoulder. The butterfly allowed Jeff to pick it up and place it on a tree branch, where it remained gently flapping it’s wings and sunning itself even on our way back down trail, several moments later.
With the truck loaded and a quick stop at the hardware store, we headed home and we began to build the structure.
Once the poles were securely in place, we threw a large sheet of canvas over the top and added a hand painted sign with our name and logo.
Our vision came through successfully (with only a small handful of initial frustrations and cuss words) and our tent was complete. The whole process holds much more meaning, knowing that we made the tent ourselves and with responsible materials. We not only made the tent, but took the time to create a lasting memory from a day spent adventuring in Montana's mountains. With all of this, another opportunity was born for "A Revival of Honest and Simple".