Published: 05/26/2022 15:10:49
GREENFIELD – After the COVID-19 pandemic prompted her to take a look at the long-term sustainability of her business, Goose Exquisite Thrift owner Astranada Gamsey decided to take a new direction as that art gallery and “plant magic shop”, now called Divine Goose Energy.
When Gamsey and her mother, Ve Amorites, opened the thrift store at 223 Main St. — the former site of Mimosa’s Thrift Shop — in 2017, they hoped to be part of a larger effort to create a market for affordable, gently used items. downtown Greenfield.
As a thrift store, the business sold gently used clothing for men, women, and children, as well as books, kitchen utensils, local artwork, and more. The store was named after the Amorites, whose son calls it “Mother Goose”.
When Gamsey started the business, she said she was just focused on starting a business and her inventory was mostly used clothes and shoes, which she relished because of her belief in l upcycling and recycling. Since Goose Exquisite Thrift opened, many similar stores have popped up around Greenfield, which Gamsey says has benefited the town as a whole.
However, over the years, Gamsey discovered that owning a thrift store became physically demanding, as she had to restock the entire store four times a year. According to Gamsey, the COVID-19 pandemic has been a big eye-opener as business owners have been forced to look at the sustainability of their inventory. The experience of the extended closure prompted her to realize that the thrift store was not something she felt safe to move forward with, and she began to seek to make a change.
Gamsey applied for an Empower Digital grant through the Massachusetts Growth Capital Corporation. Empower Digital Grants matches applicants with a local digitally savvy professional. She used her grant to redesign and rename Goose Exquisite Thrift to Goose Divine Energy.
The opening artist with works currently on display is Emily Gaimari. Born in Greenfield, Gaimari is an assistant to Leslie Parke, a veteran artist based in upstate New York, and has returned to her hometown to hone her artistic abilities. Gaimari’s work will be displayed until June.
Future artists include Aldo Pizzi, an abstract artist from Charlemont who Gamsey described as creating “very large-scale” works of art. Pizzi’s work will be exhibited from July to August. From September to October, Goose Divine Energy will show the work of Donna Estabrooks.
Gamsey has a history with Estabrooks, which designed the thrift store’s first sign.
“I saw his show next door and thought, ‘That was exactly what I was looking for for my sign,'” Gamsey recalled.
In addition to being an art gallery, Goose Divine Energy also serves as a “plant magic shop”. Gamsey said she used the term plant magick instead of plant medicine because “plants are magical. They have been used for the benefit of human well-being throughout the ages. She believes they can also function as tools to help cope with the psychological pressures of modern society.
All items sold at Goose Divine Energy are local, Gamsey said, with the goal of “supporting all the local creativity and amazing things being made here.”
Goose Divine Energy is open Monday through Saturday from noon to 5:30 p.m. For more information, visit gooseexquisitethrift.com.