dr. strangecraft (or how you can learn to stop ______ing and love the craft show)

this guy's philosophy? if you can't beat them, join 'em. no, really.

i grew up at craft shows. while i didn't "do" my first craft show until 2003, my mom had been doing them for years and attending them for years before that. i was a good craft show helper but not a good craft show companion. being a craft show helper meant dollars in my pocket so while i might have preferred to be anywhere but there, there was an incentive. shopping at a craft show was another story. these were not renegade craft style craft shows. these were the geese and potpurri craft shows of the 80s and 90s. it was no good. i was a well behaved child but i was not  happy. my overly dramatic sighs let everyone in my immediate vicinity know this was NOT where i wanted to be. and GOD FORBID my mom ask my opinion of anything she was considering buying. eyerolls and sneers, that's what she got. yeah, i was a fun kid. 

i wanted to be reading. i wanted to be watching kung fu. i wanted to be at the movies with my friends. i wanted to be ANYWHERE but there.

and yes, my mom thinks its hilarious that i'm doing 3 shows in the next three weeks. 

craft shows now are clearly different. with so many people making awesome things for kids, there's PLENTY for them to look at. most new craft shows also have activities for kids and grownups alike. i've only encountered an ill-behaved unhappy child at a craft show once in the past 8 years. he REALLY wanted a lollipop from kateri's booth. his dad told him to just ask for one. he didn't want to ask, he wanted his dad to get it for him. so, this little person went limp, fell to floor and stayed there, pouting. this kid was the clear exception. i LOVE kids at craft shows. kids freak out over everything shawn makes and its adorable. little girls look so excited when they realize that the mirror is there so they can TRY ON FASCINATORS. its fantastic.

i have, however, seen a number of grown-up craft show companions sulk while their friends and significant others browse. you know who i'm talking about. the buzz-kill who stands in the aisle, playing with their phones, counting ceiling tiles, fantastizing about being ANYWHERE but there.

we are busy people and this time of year sometimes we all have to go places and do things that aren't really at the top of our lists of favorite things. sometimes its the only way we can spend time with our friends and significant other is at an outing to a craft show. i get it. but i'd like to make a suggestion or two:

if you REALLY want to go to Urban Craft Uprising or Renegade this weekend and this isn't your significant other's cup o' tea, go by yourself. if your friend isn't really into handmade, meet them for coffee after the show. you will have more fun solo than if you're with someone who doesn't want to be there. at my last show, there was a woman who was on her own. her friend, who "doesn't get why handmade is cool" bailed on her last minute and she decided to come anyway. she was giddy. she said she was able to spend as much time as she wanted and didn't have to worry about anyone poo-pooing her shopping decisions. 

if you REALLY don't want to go to a craft show this weekend but can't seem to get out of it, its not so bad. really, its not. people everywhere are making amazing things. really and truly. stop and take a look around. i challenge you to find at least one thing you really like. i'm betting you'll find more. and plus, you're making someone you love happy by being there. where's the bad in that?

Posted in:
  |   permalink   |   0 comment(s)

flashback friday

nicole recently posted a lovely life list on her blog - things she wants to do in her lifetime. one of the items was "go sightseeing on a vespa" and she's already crossed it off her list! i was pretty excited to see that on her list because shawn & i did that once...

in october 2001, shawn & i went on our first trip to italy. within an hour of arriving and with roman holiday on the brain, we rented two scooters. we figured out our first stop and away we went. rome was experiencing a fall heat wave. it was hot, sunny and gorgeous. we were ready for an adventure.  then shawn missed a turn and i realized that i was in possesion of all the maps, the phrasebook and a working knowledge of the italian language. shawn had his charm, good looks and no clue where he was heading or how to ask for directions. i came to a piazza near the turn he'd missed and waited, wondering how i was going to explain to his mom that i'd lost him within hours of arriving in italy. being the smart guy he is, he found me. i gave him a map, the phrasebook and away we went, again. with no destination in mind, we rode around the city, stopping for pictures every so often. we rode up one of the seven hills and stopped for our first gelato at a stand high above the city. this was exactly what we were hoping for. perfection. we decided to go to the spanish steps next. we planned our route and hopped on our scooters, happy as could be. 

we came to a traffic octogon and i was cut off by a truck. we were separated and i was forced to turn. i snapped the picture above at the first stop light i came to. i was still happy. we found each other once, surely we'd be able to do it again. shawn had a map and the phrasebook. we had a destination. we could do it, right?

i would stop, look at the map and start again, only to find myself forced to reroute by one way streets, detours and blind panic. i asked for directions and although the route the polizia sent me on took me through the scariest tunnel i'd ever driven through i was much closer than i had been. the area around the spanish steps is tricky. many streets are closed to vehicles and it seems the rest were one way in the opposite direction. i was making my way through this maze when i came to a dead end. i stopped, looked both ways and began to pull out. a small silver car came out of nowhere and we t-boned. i flew forward hard on the scooter but the death grip i had on the handle bars prevented me from falling. my tire made contact with the car's tire. the driver stopped and started screaming at me in italian. the deer caught in headlights look must've given me away as an american because he started calling me a stupid american girl. i yelled back in italian and he was clearly taken by surprise. he was also taken aback when the carabinieri pulled up behind him. two officers jumped out of their car with their large guns and began yelling at him as well. they had seen the whole thing and were clear - it was him that was at fault for driving so recklessly. one office talked with the driver while the other spoke to me. did i need to go to the hospital? no, i was fine. was i sure? yes. was i american? how did i speak italian? could they do anything for me? i needed to find the spanish steps. could he direct me? yes but why did i want to go to the spanish steps? to meet my husband who was also lost. was i sure i wanted to go to the spanish steps? yes. wouldn't i rather go to dinner with him? no. no. spanish steps, grazie, prego... the very nice military police officer gave me perfect instrustions. i had arrived but how was i going to find shawn? it was very crowded and a couple of hours had passed. what was shawn even wearing? 

somehow we found each other. we ran toward each other through the crowd. you'd think that would've been romantic but i'm pretty certain that we looked less romantic and more like two people finding each other in a disaster movie. disheveled and stressed out. but, we found each other.

shawn went through the same scary tunnel. he stopped and asked for help multiple times. except for the incident with the other driver, he'd had as harrowing an adventure as i. but we were together again. and we were going to return one scooter, immediately. too bad we killed our one remaining scooter the next day after a trip to the gas station. but that's a story for another day.

and if i could, i'd totally do it over again.

Posted in:
  |   permalink   |   0 comment(s)

music monday

this nice jewish girl doesn't care what you think. she loves christmas. 

Posted in:
  |   permalink   |   0 comment(s)

things i love tuesday


twinkle, twinkle earrings

stars. my doodles are almost always stars, real and imaginary constellations. i used to always wear a star somewhere on my person. i may need to get back in the habit. they make me happy. and really, if ithey're good enough for wonder woman, who am i to argue?

wonder woman embroidery

Posted in:
  |   permalink   |   0 comment(s)

the more the merrier

wenceslas barrette & necklace

audacity barrette & bracelet

kateri listed both this necklace and bracelet yesterday and i knew i was going to have to make barrettes to match. so i did. and i know kateri's working on at least one color friend currently. this is fun!

yay!

Posted in:
  |   permalink   |   1 comment(s)

why today was awesome

a list...

  • i had my eyebrows sugared. this may be oversharing and seem like not really a big deal but trust me, it was. i haven't had them waxed in about a year and had been extra lazy with the tweezing.
  • monkey was extra cute. exhibit a: 

  • as i mentioned before, i left the house. since it feels like all i've been doing is watching bad television and preparing for crafty wonderland, it was nice. and sunny.
  • itunes shuffle gifted me with a mobile dance party during my errands. it was most excellent.
  • kateri & i watched more eerie, indiana while chatting on the phone.
  • i set up my next tattoo appointment.
  • i ate a croissant. never a bad thing.
  • did i mention the sun?

      

 

Posted in:
  |   permalink   |   2 comment(s)

a big deal

this weekend shawn & i will be selling at crafty wonderland this weekend. one year ago, shawn was in portland finding us a place to live. and then after he'd found our house, he went to crafty wonderland. he spent the entire day there and called me that night SO JAZZED. "best. craft show. EVER," he said. so, i think its pretty awesome that we'll be there. come say hi if you're in portland! 

Posted in:
  |   permalink   |   0 comment(s)

music monday

yeah, whatevs. more christmas music from the jewish girl. i can't help myself.

Posted in:
  |   permalink   |   0 comment(s)

things i love tuesday (etsy love)

i love my bicycle so very much. its beautiful and every single time i go for a ride someone tells me so. plus, riding in portland is so much less scary than it was in chicago. i don't think twice about going out for a ride by myself now and yesterday i rode my bike to do some holiday shopping. i couldn't really wrap my head around that but it made me happy. i rode my bicycle in december to go buy presents. AWESOME. it made me love my bike (and portland) even more.

so, here's a few etsy picks for the bike lover in your life:

from the top:

detachable smartphone speaker, country cycle print, mopha tool roll

i heart my bike, eloise handlebar bag, classic

classic wood porter crate, speedy delivery mug, brain helmet

Posted in:
  |   permalink   |   0 comment(s)

wordless wednesday

Posted in:
  |   permalink   |   0 comment(s)

color friends

Posted in:
  |   permalink   |   0 comment(s)

percolating

i can't stop playing with the percolator app on my iphone. i'm not so enamored with the interface - there are almost TOO MANY options. and i'm not entirely sure why i need to use this app on my pictures but i am enjoying the end result. 

Posted in:
  |   permalink   |   0 comment(s)