Home Handbags Nancy Grant Obituary (2022) – Hartford, CT

Nancy Grant Obituary (2022) – Hartford, CT

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Nancy Barbara Caplan Grant (née Rottner) died January 14, 2022 at MorseLife Assisted Living in Palm Beach. She was 91 years old. Just months before her death, MorseLife underwent a brief renovation, so Nancy was helped by her favorite aide to prepare for a 4-day respite at the Carlisle Palm Beach. In anticipation of this move – an inconvenience for many nonagenarians – Nancy showed the same excitement one would see in a teenager before a party. A woman with an enormous sense of pleasure – who enjoyed meeting new people until the end of her days – even with aches and pains, Nancy retained the features of her youth. The eldest of Maurice and Edith Rottner’s three children, Nancy was born and raised in West Hartford, Connecticut. She had an idyllic childhood. His family owned a beach house on Long Island Sound in Westbrook, Connecticut, near the home of Katherine Hepburn and Bill Hahn’s Resort (now Water’s Edge), which featured, for example, performances by a young Barbara Streisand. Nancy loved being surrounded by nature there. The Rottners lived in the beach house during the summers, including the years when Nancy was in high school. After graduating from Hall High, she attended the University of Wisconsin and then the Vesper George School of Art in Boston. In 1950, Nancy married David R. Caplan, a union which was to produce two children: Robin Keuneke and Peter S. Caplan – of blessed memory. Upon the family’s move to Atlanta, Nancy and David, both very creative inspired by years of antiques in New England, started two artisanal lighting businesses: Georgian Art Lighting and a few years later, Plantation Lighting. The companies showcased the finest handcrafted brass and copper lighting in the country. Striking Georgian art lanterns adorned the grounds of the Georgia Governor’s Mansion on West Paces Ferry Road. After divorcing in 1982, Nancy started a hand-knit sweater business based on quirky designs that included bringing yarn and her innovative patterns to unemployed knitters, who had no transportation and had need work. Helping these women improve their lives has brought satisfaction to this fiercely independent woman. She was a ball of fire. Benefiting from her rare ability to excel in art and business, her bold designs made of the finest yarns exemplify the epitome of 1980s color block knits, which Nancy placed with high-end retailers including Saks Fifth Ave. A few years later, in order to be close to her aging parents, she moved to Palm Beach and launched Fancy Nancy, a successful brand of handbags and leather goods. Traveling the world in search of suppliers for her bohemian designs, which to this day can be found as signature collectibles on Ebay, Nancy was comfortable doing business even in China, where her trust allowed us to negotiate with aggressive success. It was during this time that she met and married Richard S. Grant, a romantic relationship that was to last twenty years until his death in 2011. In retirement, they found joy in the company of one of the other, which included world travel, many friendships and philanthropy. They loved their new home in Delray Beach and were as excited as newlyweds to move in. It was to become the scene of many memorable parties. In the years following Dick’s death, Nancy continued to knit for her own enjoyment and that of her daughter. She had a knack for landscaping and gardening, continuing to develop her property at Seagate Country Club in Delray Beach with the same originality found in her sweaters. Tall topiaries of fuchsia bougainvillea punctuated mature tropical palms, creating a sense of glamor that Nancy’s personal style demanded. His aptitude for interior design was also evident. Exemplary in her colorful house, Nancy had the confidence, for example, to combine a large reed basket with an antique service. Enhancing the mundane with the precious was a sensibility that could not be missing in the material selections for her handbags and sweaters. Nancy was an avid reader, enjoying the work of Joyce Carol Oates as much as the classics. And she loved painting, especially the idiosyncratic work of Frida Khalo. Nancy didn’t miss a bridge game at her country club, or an opportunity to support her favorite charity, the Jewish Federation. Always an exceptional home cook, Nancy was part of her daughter’s motivation to write books about natural food cooking. Besides her daughter, Robin, and son-in-law, Thomas, of North Chatham, Massachusetts and Delray Beach, Nancy is survived by the daughters of her sister Judith – of blessed memory and her nieces, Amie Phillips and Karen Ellison, both of Atlanta. Despite the pandemic, Nancy was frequently visited at MorseLife by Robin and Thomas, whose company she enjoyed until the very end.

Published by Hartford Courant on January 30, 2022.

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