Bruce Trowbridge Tidwell, “Dandy”, was born in Forest Park Georgia in 1963 to a family some what marked by creativity and eccentricity which allowed him a childhood free to discover himself and pursue his early artistic talents. After displaying both interest and talent in acrylic painting, he began private art lessons at the age of twelve. He graduated Forest Park Senior High School in 1981 with awards for achievements in theater and art, continuing on to Clayton Junior college where he majored in Art with a focus on painting and minored in French. After receiving his Associates degree in Art, he moved to Athens, Georgia to pursue a Bachelor of Arts degree at the University of Georgia. He majored in Art with a concentration in Interior Design and a certificate in French. He spent his last semester on a studies abroad program where he toured London, Paris, Rome, Florence, and Venice, along with two months in Tuscany. This trip would prove a seminal experience in his life.
In spite of graduating at the top of his class, it would be many years before he put his interior design skills to professional use. Theater took precedence as he once more took to the stage and to costume crafting. Over the years Dandy has done many things from designing department store mannequins to managing one of the nations first art galleries devoted to animation art and cartoon memorabilia, to being a blue print librarian for a Fortune 500 real estate investment company.
Dandy learned leather crafting when he returned to the world of fashion in the late 1990s as a custom designer for an exclusive boutique in Atlanta, Georgia. A few years later he would start his own fashion company House of Blackthorn, known for custom clothes, costumes, and corsetry. After a detour of several years into the world of academia, which included earning a Masters degree in Art Journalism from one of the top programs in the nation and teaching as a professor at both Westwood College and Syracuse University, he is overjoyed to return to creative endeavors. It was almost inevitable that this would include his life long love of all things Victorian/ Edwardian and a recent fascination with the world of steampunk.
“The Trowbridge Emporium is the convergence of many of my life long passions. It is a showcase for my love of leather and skill as a leathercrafter, an opportunity to buy and sell the antiques and collectibles that I love, and a gallery in which to share things of beauty and quality with the world, presented with the style, elegance, and impeccable service of days gone by.”