Buyer’s Market

When I first met Jenni Brant, of BurroBranch, though the Etsy Mud Team, I immediately recognized some of her work and posted a little something about it on the Night Kitchen. Some months later she got in touch with me again: One of her pieces, she said, had been picked as a finalist in the Niche Magazine awards contest and she’d be coming from Nebraska to Philadelphia to hand deliver it. The contest was happening simultaneous with the big craft buyer’s market at the Philadelphia Convention Center, in mid-February. Could she stay on my couch?

Of course, I said yes, albeit my couch is uncomfortable and she’d be overrun with cats. We made some preliminary arrangements. But then, just a little over a week before she was supposed to come, she told me she was totally bogged down in work. She asked if I would be willing to hand deliver her piece, if she shipped ASAP, and she would include a little gift and a pass to check out the market. I couldn’t down that offer!

So she whisked her piece over and I jumped on a bus with it Friday morning and delivered it to the show. Then came the cool part! The Buyer’s Market is specifically for wholesale crafters, and you are not allowed in if you are not a buyer or affiliated with a gallery or shop. Or, if you have a special pass. Which I did. So I spent well over two hours meandering through, checking out some truly amazing jewelery and other goodies along the way.

Some stuff, I have to say, was mediocre. Some of the ceramics was particularly not notable, unfortunately, but there were a few that really stood out. There were some things there that were just plain weird (pizza clocks?). But for the most part I was awed and dazzled by the literally hundreds of incredible fine jewelers and metal smiths, not to mention teased and tempted by wholesale price markings on everything!

Here’s a few of the highlights, from the folks I was able to grab business cards from:

Jewelry by Nora Dougherty, www.noradougherty.com
Jewelry by Nora Dougherty, http://www.noradougherty.com

Sarah Graham Metalsmiths, www.sarahgraham.com
Sarah Graham Metalsmiths, http://www.sarahgraham.com

Jacob Albee Goldsmith, www.jacobalbee.com

Jacob Albee Goldsmith, http://www.jacobalbee.com

Danny Kamerath Woodworking, www.dannykamerath.com

Danny Kamerath Woodworking, http://www.dannykamerath.com

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Partial Packing List

– Binoculars

– Sleeping bag

– Two notebooks

– Five pens

– 20 pencils for when the ink freezes in the pens

– Every pair of wool socks known to man

– Long underwear

– Peruvian Llama-hair gloves

– Self-warming shoe inserts

– Wool hat

– Awesome compass, hand-carved by WoodElements, which I would totally bring if I owned it!

….

Hmmm…am I going to an inauguration or spelunking?

Published in: on January 16, 2009 at 12:10 am  Comments (2)  

Trinkets

An earthy little treat, hand-wood burned by Michelle Hambourg, of My Belle Bijoux. Aren’t those hairpins just adorable? Check out her necklaces, I love the dreamy spiral-trees.

Oh, and have I mentioned that I’m in love?

Published in: on October 15, 2008 at 11:47 pm  Comments (4)  

A dash of different…

To come up with these featured artists, I often find myself sifting through shop after Etsy shop. Eventually, many of them begin to look…well, the same.

So when I see someone doing something I’ve never seen before, believe me, I snap to attention.

That’s what caught by eye about 3Dots, by jewelry designer Lucie Veilleux. Gorgeous polished wood jewelry, contrasted with bright glass beads and all delightfully asymmetrical. I say, show me more!

P.S. Don’t forget to enter my giveaway this week!

Published in: on July 7, 2008 at 6:50 pm  Comments (2)  

Gonna pick up my guitar and play…

Can you hear the drool dripping?

Now, granted, I can only play about two chords on the guitar, and I’m told you need at least three to play a tune. But I lived with a musician long enough to have an appreciation for a pretty instrument when I see one. And the fact that husband and wife team Heidi Shaulis and Isaac Willis, of West Corinth Studios, made this totally by hand, while striving to be as environmentally friendly as possible….well, there are only two words for it: Rock on!

Published in: on June 9, 2008 at 11:17 am  Comments (3)  

Treasures

 

Many of my friends are starting to get married – a prospect which, at 24, I find kinda terrifying. But hey, I gotta be happy for them. But I’m was a little less happy (just a tiny smidgen!) when it dawned on me how expensive going to a wedding is!! I have to buy a new dress, plus an $80 waffle iron???

I don’t know, maybe it’s me, but it’s hard to really feel like I showed my love for my knot-tying friends with a waffle iron or freakishly expensive orange juicer. So it’s such a relief to find other amazing (and less budget-killing) options on Etsy.

Take, for example, this gorgeous restored cigar box from Patricia, at TattooDreams. It’s sweet, special and sincere – and entirely affordable. And seriously, how often do we really have time to make waffles in the morning?

Published in: on March 24, 2008 at 6:49 pm  Comments (1)