A few weeks ago Micheline called me, excited about the idea of opening an Etsy shop. For those of you who don’t know, Etsy shops differ from shops like eBay in that they only sell items produced or upcycled by the shop owner.
For those of you who’ve followed our Whimsical blog you know that Mich is an artist. She draws and paints, does amazing photography and makes lovely jewelry. Me, I write. I also sew –thanks to Micheline— and I like to decorate but that’s for future blogs so stay tuned.
Bottom line: Unless I want to start mass-producing cushion and duvet covers (and I don’t!) the Etsy store is pretty much Mich’s baby. My contribution? We’ll be selling our book Miss Emily Goes to Bat at the Etsy shop and Micheline let me name the store. (I am a writer after all, so I’ve got the cred).
As a writer, I love words. I love knowing where they come from, whom they’re related to and any little quirk they might have. Mishmash (yes, it’s one word but we took artistic license and broke it into two) has both interesting relations and a few quirks. The word mishmash is what linguists refer to as a reduplicated word; where two syllables differ only by a vowel variation, like crisscross and riffraff. To me, that’s just fun.
In contemporary English Mish is not only short for “mission”, it’s short for Micheline –and Micheline is on a mission of sorts to bring art and beauty into people’s lives. And, as Mich confessed when I first approached her with the name, her childhood nickname was “Mish-Mashilene”. As Sheldon on the TV series, The Big Bang Theory would say, “Bazzinga!”
The origin of mishmash is late Middle English with a bit of Yiddish thrown in just for fun. (Well, not really, the Yiddish contribution is mishn, meaning, “to mix”). It’s first known use was the 15th century and it refers to a collection or mixture of unrelated things. It’s been around for about 500 years; it’s also got street cred.
The ultimate connection? Mich’s Etsy shop is a collection of, well, sort of unrelated things. I mean sure, you can make the argument that it’s all “art” but let’s not go there –it’s a lot more fun that way.
If you happen to be a word geek like me check out these interesting sites on etymology (the history of words):
And don’t forget to check out Mich’s Etsy shop,