Have you heard the story of One Red Paperclip?

One man, a red paper clip, a trade  and  –  click the link above!

While working on my latest paper sculpture, I used some colorful paper clips.  The reds reminded me of a fun trade I’d made on Craigslist.

Some background

I was showing my pressed floral art work at Art Shows from Lompoc to Hollywood to Lake Arrowhead and won ribbons for my work.  I also belonged to a barter organization.  To join, I ‘gave’  $500 worth of pressed floral artwork  and a small fee.

Pressed floral collage including sweet pea tendrils, lunaria, larkspur, verbena…

Members received a list of goods and services available for trade.  Anyone was free to barter for anything on the list, provided that credits were available.  To receive more credits, I’d trade my own stuff  through the list or yearly conventions. I could use my credits, carry my goods as trade or a combination of both.

I still have the huge hand-made needlepoint wool rug I bartered for.

Later, I became a mother again, and couldn’t travel with my floral artwork.  I became a children’s entertainer and with that, amassed plenty of stuff for my act and my costumes.  There were shoelaces galore, some for shoes, some for rope tricks.  Two pair were new, a red curlicue pair and a long white with gold threads running the whole length pair.

Onto Craigslist they went, under the Barter category.

I got offers, and one stood out.  Matt, who lived in the next small city, said he’d trade a song for the shoelaces.  I agreed and mailed the shoelaces.

Not too long after that, I received the song by email and what a thrill!

We both moved on, Matt having recently become a father for the first time and I, living in the Pacific Northwest.

I chose not to red paper clip the song.

Can you guess what that plan is? 

Do you think this was a fair exchange?

Do you barter, or trade, or would you like to?