Monday, September 9, 2013

Indie Craft Parade

I went, I saw, I bought T-shirts.

I have a problem with the Indie Craft Parade; I love it, but I never think far enough ahead to save enough money to really go nuts and buy all the stuff I like. I end up endlessly debating with myself as we walk the aisles, trying to figure out what to do with the money I do have.

And then, in the end, I buy t-shirts.

I'm going to start planning for next year's show sometime in March, make sure I have enough money saved up to really just make a spectacle of myself with how much stuff I buy.

I say that, but I said that last year after I bought t-shirts, too. You see how that 'planning ahead' stuff works out for me.

After breakfast yesterday, Jason and I walked up to the Huguenot Mill, just behind the Peace Center, where they hold it. It was about 10:42 (and the Parade didn't open up until 11) but there was already a line of fifty or so stretching along the side. We took our place at the end, and within about five minutes another hundred or so had gathered behind us, slowly winding around the side of another building and down towards the river.

When your event has 200 people in line by the time you open the doors, that's usually a good sign.

This year, the Indie Craft Parade expanded into a downstairs level as well as the upstairs, giving them room for more booths and for each booth to have a little more space to breathe.

I would definitely say the artists and craftspeople were friendlier this year - last year, I remember being surprised by how standoffish many of the artists were but this year we were greeted by nearly every booth we paused at, asked how we were doing, what kind of things we were looking for today. I was even able to chat with a couple of artists about their process.

Our favorites:

This lady (no website yet, but I grabbed her email and I will post up the link to her shop once it's up) made flower headbands and pins and these awesome animal masks. I didn't pick one up (I ran into the aforementioned didn't-plan-ahead-to-have-money problem), but I am eyeballing a mask for Halloween.

I think I should be a raccoon. I like racoons. Well, not actual raccoons but I like the idea of raccoons.

Actually, I'll probably end up going as the guy dressed up at the fox in this music video. Warning: this video is completely insane, and that song will be stuck in your head for days.

Seed & Sky had my favorite jewelry. Her pendants are these gorgeous tiny prints of paintings she's done. They were all beautiful, but I was staring pretty hard at a necklace with a painting of the Blue Ridge skyline. I am still staring at it.

I think I will be staring at it in my hands next month, because it is only a matter of time, people. That necklace will be mine.

I loved Chomp's business cards! She does work with textile and had a gorgeous quilt and lots of tote bags and bigger kind of beach-y bags that you could carry your whole lives in. They were very pretty and well-constructed.

I suppose I should add one of their bags to the "it's only a matter of time" list. Christmas is coming up, right? I'm still enough of a kid to get frivolous presents... right?

This booth, for Tree and Laser, had a ton of awesome woodworking stuff. I really liked this set of magnets, and just below it a wooden coaster that said "Don't Feed the Bear."

Bears seemed to be somewhat of a theme, this year. Apparently bears became cool at some point, who knew?

Well... the bears did. The bears liked bears before bears were cool.

Cory Godbey, as per usual, was there. I don't have any photos of his booth because it was always swarmed the whole time we were there, so I didn't have a chance.

 I told Jason that Cory is basically who I want to be when I grow up. He's a fantasy-based illustrator and artist, depending on the project, and has appeared in the Spectrum series of books highlighting awesome fantasy and sci-fi artists, which is probably the second-coolest thing I can imagine happening in my career.

I love his stuff. I've featured him before on the blog as an artist that I love, and it's great getting to see prints and cards and larger versions of his work close-up at the parade every year.

In the end, though, I walked out with two T-shirts from Dapper Ink. I'm wearing one and holding the other, because that is how we do swag around here. I just drape as much of it on myself as I can for the photo. Next year I hope to be so weighed down I can't even stand up.

That super-cool model pose up there is entirely due to the dogs across the street distracting me. I'm so good at taking pictures of myself. Clearly.

If you look at the photo of me in my last entry from our visit to Mary Beth's, and you see my T-shirt? That's the shirt the Dapper Ink people were selling last year at the Parade. I didn't realize it until someone downstairs at a booth asked me about it, and then when I was browsing the Dapper Ink guys' booth, one of them actually called me on the fact that I was wearing last year's shirt.

I am still undecided as to whether or not I think that was cool or if I have actually become the least-cool person on earth and should just sort of wallow in shame.

I can only swear to you on a stack of all my favorite books that I had no idea until we got there.

Other favorites that I have no photos of -  Platypusfile, january jewelry, Courtney Dodd, Gypsy Raku, Rachel Wilder's jewelry, Overton Ironworks, Lily Wikoff's beautiful ceramic-and-chain necklaces. Just about every booth, really.

Next year, though. Next year I'm going to be ready.

I mean it this time.


  1. So cool, we are Tshirt twins! My roomate interned at Dapper Ink this summer, and gets a lot of free stuff :p


    1. Ugh, your roommate is lucky. I liked their designs last year at the ICP, but this year I felt like they were definitely kind of turned up to 11. I liked the really retro resigns and color schemes a LOT. Honestly it was super tough to pick only two.

  2. Wow, that's one epic craft fair!

    I dated a guy a looooong time ago who was an illustrator, and he always claimed that Spectrum was all politics and "who you know." In retrospect, I think the guy I was dating just didn't make great fantasy art.

    ...have you posted any of your own art here? And I missed it? Because I would feel DUMB if that happened. I wanna see your art.

    1. It probably is a bit political, I mean everything is when you get down to it. But it's also part of getting in with the "right" publications; like, it's all well and good to be an illustrator but Spectrum's not going to note oyu as one of the "important" guys unless you're showing up regularly in certain magazines, books, movie posters, etc. They're looking for a certain level of discovery before they feature people.

      I used to, but I haven't in a looooong time. Jason and I are getting ready to open up our own etsy shop and I'll probably start showing it again around that time. I didn't make anything for a bit except doodle-y sketches, but I've started to get productive again.

      So, y'know... give me a month or two ;)


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