It’s not often we get an afternoon to truly take a moment and spend time thinking about those tangible things that represent ourselves, the places we call home, and the people we love. Spending time with local artist Meg Biram at her MIMI RYAN Tray Bar gave us just that. Last Friday, Paige, Margaret, and I visited the MIMI RYAN Tray Bar to create something truly special and unique using carefully selected charms, colored beads, letters, and other items to capture memories and personalities all together in a beautiful, unique tray.
Working in real estate, we’ve seen many fun ways to decorate coffee tables and bookshelves. Not once have we seen something like these MIMI RYAN trays! These 100 percent custom, thought-filled trays can be used to catch your keys, jewelry, or spare change or may be propped up on a bookshelf to display as art. A true conversation starter!
If you’re not already familiar with Meg Biram, let us introduce you! Meg is a contemporary artist based in the Washington D.C. area whose creative passion has been well-loved here in Alexandria. Her portfolio includes over 30 murals found throughout the U.S., as well as collaborations with Uber, HP, Pratt & Lambert, and more. Her work has been featured in The New York Times, on The Today Show, and Good Morning America!, and in Northern Virginia Magazine, to name a few. Before working full-time as an artist, writer, and photoshoot producer, Meg worked in advertising and journalism, specializing in design. Her experience in journalism fueled her passion for storytelling and deeper meaning, which she uses as inspiration and exploration in her abstract and expressive art pieces. You can find her work throughout Alexandria, and she’s also featured in The Scout Guide (check out page 10).
Meg’s passion for storytelling shines through in this creative endeavor. The concept for these trays all started with the holidays. Meg annually looks for something unique to offer as holiday gifts. What do you give the person who already has everything? When she opened up orders for her custom trays last holiday season, the demand and positive reception from her clients and friends proved this concept to be one that will be popular. Once the excitement for her trays took off, Meg created a dedicated business just for this unique experience and honored her grandmother and mother by choosing their shared name, MIMI RYAN, as the company name.
Walking down the color-filled aisles of Meg Biram’s MIMI RYAN Tray Bar studio is inspiring… I mean, how can we not want to pick every single adorable puppy charm or ice cream pin? From vintage charms and pins to glitter bits and bobs, MIMI RYAN offers a variety of choices. Clients are welcome to bring in their own mementos such as coins, charms, buttons, and costume jewelry to add a personal flair to these already detailed and specially curated pieces. After picking and choosing from the tray bar, the last step offers the “artist’s touch” for their designers to create a layout and composition that compliments the colors and items chosen. Behind the scenes, Meg will work her magic. Production takes hours and days of watching and waiting, making sure the items don’t move or float around while the resin hardens and waiting for each layer to harden and cure. Creating these trays is a true labor of love!
The future of MIMI RYAN is looking bright, and the buzz is growing. Local business support is what Alexandria does best. Not only do we have some incredible artists, but we also have a community that supports one another! So, let’s keep this buzz going! Meg hopes to take MIMI RYAN on the road and set up tray bars in cities across the U.S.! Appointments open up in rounds, so make sure to follow @mimiryantrays and join her email list to keep in touch for future tray bar openings. We can’t wait to see MIMI RYAN grow as an extension of Meg Biram Studio and see her unique and colorful custom trays in your homes!