Got Craft? Blog

30.6.09

Talk Crafty to Me!


(image credit to Talk Crafty to Me)

I stumbled across Kelly's website, Talk Crafty to Me, when she blogged about Got Craft? last May.

Under the about tab, it says that it is "For crafty and creative people, dedicated to all things handmade. Talk Crafty To Me, is a place to share the things that inspire me to break out the glue gun and the glitter. Distinctive, original, lovingly crafted, handmade products full of style."


(photo credit to Hine via Talk Crafty to Me)

Local designer, Hine, was featured on April 15. Hine is one of my favourite artists. Her items are amazing! Check out more of her work on her flickr site.

Kelly has fantastic posts about local crafty events, super cute tutorials, featured artists and links to free crafty giveaways!


(photo credit to goody-goody via Talk Crafty to Me)

Bitty Bug Pincushion tutorial by goody-goody via Talk Crafty to Me

Coco Cake Cupcakes - feature #5



Company: Coco Cake Cupcakes
Name: Lyndsay Sung
Website links: www.cococake.com, www.cococakecupcakes.blogspot.com

What do you make?
Nowadays I make baked-from-scratch cupcakes, decorated with a vintage aesthetic that often borders on ridiculously cute. I also sometimes make cakes, and I dabble in ice cream recipes and frozen yogurt too.



What or who inspires you?
Other artist ladies who are doing it for themselves; famous bakers and lovely, well -deisgned bakeshops around the world such as Miette in San Francisco and Trophy Cupcakes in Seattle; my insanely talented group of friends; people with amazing blogs with amazing photos, the kids who I teach art to, because they are so hilarious and make super awesome art. Also, a fat cat sitting in a windowsill always makes me laugh and inspires me to make something cute or funny. I also love vintage baking books and vintage children’s design, from kid’s toys to cute lamps to great patterns.



How did you get started?
My grandma gave me a pink Kitchen Aid for a wedding present. It sat unused for a few months in a cupboard. My husband said, “bring that puppy out! Otherwise you’ll never use it!” I started using it and couldn’t stop. I love it. I started making weird muffins, and trying all sorts of baked recipes. I got obsessed. I read a lot and researched a lot of techniques online and in books, and then tried them all out. Lots of failures and then lots of success! I started a blog for fun, and it’s really exploded with lots of really nice people who read it. Then I did a friend’s wedding in the Fall of 2008 (not very long ago!), then I did the Toque fair at the Western Front at Christmas, and since then it’s been a giant cupcake snowball effect!



What are your favourite ingredients to work with?
Butter. Unsalted butter. Beautiful stuff. Pure vanilla extract, good cocoa powder. I have a zillion frosting tips and fun little tools for creating faces and animals and pretty borders and buttercream roses. I obsessively buy cute cupcake liners. I always draw out my cupcakes or cake before I delve into it, so I have a butter-grease stained and icing-sugar-covered homemade sketchpad of funny drawings of cupcakes and cakes.

What is the hardest and most favourite part of crafting?
The hardest thing for me right now is making a huge mess in my own kitchen that I have to clean up a few times a day, and then make dinner! (though my husband often makes dinner too!) I got really tired of being in the kitchen for a while so I kind of stopped cooking. But now I’m rolling back into it. It’s just part of how I’m working at the moment. I guess another hard part is thinking about my labour and how much time I spend on my cupcakes and cakes. I am working on adjusting my prices to reflect the labour a bit more, but without scaring off customers. My fave part about my baking is the joy people get out of my creations--! When Coco Cake customers get so excited about something I’ve worked hard on, I feel happy for an entire day. And when people send me pictures of their kids or themselves with my cakes and cupcakes with huge smiles on their faces, that makes me SO happy!



List 5 of your favourite links and why you like them
Poppytalk: I love Jan’s design blog “Poppytalk”. It’s a local Vancouver blog but she has readers from everywhere. The design is wonderful, the things she writes about and finds are totally inspiring, from vintage objects to well-designed home d├ęcor and beautiful crafts, and Jan is super supportive of Canadian artists and crafters and has a Poppytalk Handmade art market dedicated to artists’ work, letterpress, craft, vintage stuff... She’s just so cool!

My sis, who is a graphic designer, has an awesome blog called “Love Love Letterpress.” She’s been in love with letterpress for a long time, and she seeks out beautiful letter press design and writes about it on her blog, complete with lots of pictures.

Where The Lovely Things Are: Another great blog, collecting art, gorgeous pictures of stylish and interesting clothing that I drool over, well-designed things and vintage items in one nicely designed and sweetly written blog.

Spearmint Baby: I’ve been super into Spearmint Baby lately, which is a blog dedicated to cool finds for kids—kid’s design, cute clothes, vintage toys, objecst for the home, tips, wallpaper, etc. I love vintage children’s design which makes this blog a new favorite of mine. They recently had a post on 1970s kids rooms and I almost died, the rooms were so bonkers and cute. I dunno if my husband would be into decking our place out too majorly in that style. But I can’t wait to deck out a future kid’s room all crazy!!

I read and follow quite a few cake and cupcake blogs too. It’s great to see what’s out there. Everyone is very supportive of each other, which is awesome. I read Cake Spy from Seattle, the Food Librarian, oh man too many to mention. Some have really super-amazing photos, such as Cannelle Vanille; when I see her photos I want to throw my photos in the garbage! Not really though.



Do you have any advice for those in the biz?
I’m lucky because I have another great job that I like (teaching art to kids) so I don’t fully rely on the monetary unsteadiness of whether or not I have orders every day, although I’m also lucky because since I started baking I do have lots of orders every week, (mostly weekends though, so I can never go out anymore because I have to get up really early!) so this past term I cut down my hours teaching to spend more time baking. I think my advice would be, to just go out there and do it. Try it. Have fun, be courteous, be supportive of others and make something you’re really into. It will show if you’re really into it. Have a fine sense of craftswomanship. I think if you’re already in the biz and you don’t have a blog, you should totally start one. It’s an amazing concept with tons of networking opportunities, ways to make new pals and a fun way to document all the cool stuff you’re producing.

Art vs. Craft - Are these terms different? Do you consider yourself an artist or a crafter?
I suppose the old use of the word craft sort of conjures up images of old ladies or housewives making squishy faced dolls out of old brown nylons and cotton batting, with black pins as eyes and handsewn mouths. I do see art and craft as having defining lines, yet they blur very magically. I love the mixture of the two. I believe crafters are artists, but I bet some crafters wouldn’t think of themselves as artists, but more as hobbyists, whereas some artists who sell work at craft fairs wouldn’t think they were making crafts, but art.



I think of myself as a crafty artist. I like to learn new things and techniques and I like to apply them immediately!

Thanks for the interview! I learned a lot about myself from writing this!

(photo images courtesy of Lyndsay / Coco Cake Cupcakes)

If you are interested in being featured, please send us an email at info(at)gotcraft(dot)com.

26.6.09

10 reasons to go see Handmade Nation



  1. Vancouver is the only Canadian stop that Director Faythe Levine is attending
  2. Show us your DIY at the Photobooth Vancouver station for free
  3. Shop for one of a kind goodies at the Craft Showcase featuring 14 local handmade artists
  4. Celebrate handmade and indie films
  5. Celebrate Kim Werker's birthday
  6. The documentary will screen for one night only
  7. Enjoy some delish cupcakes (vegan ganache!) by Coco Cake Cupcakes
  8. First 100 tickets sold receive a free swag bag
  9. It is at the Rio Theatre
  10. It is brought to you by the folks from Got Craft? so you know it's going to be good!

24.6.09

my cleo cat





.... her sweet little pink nose!



On an un-related note .... pin back sets are almost back in stock!

22.6.09

pomomama design - feature #4



Company: pomomama design
Name: Amanda
Website links: www.pomomamadesign.com



What do you make?
In a nutshell, I make jewelry and accessories from wire, metal and fibre, usually as wire crochet incorporating glass and gemstone beads with fibre elements. I also sew, knit and crochet with more traditional materials. Two new skills are art clay silver and metalwork which I hope to use more frequently.

What or who inspires you?
My parents' garden in Scotland (http://www.micklegarth.co.uk/), where I grew up, still inspires me. The fibre bug came about after meeting Tanis Alexis at the first Vancouver Etsy sellers meet up, way back in summer 2006. I got her felted cuff and handmade felt in the crafty gift swap. Artists Deebs and Kirsten Chursinoff both inspire further fibre adventures, and William Morris for the sheer beauty of design.



How did you get started?
I needed to mend the jewelry that my son was breaking! I was also homesick and wanted to wear some of the seaglass from Scotland and Northumberland brought with me to Canada. Once I got started I found that settling down with something crafty kept me occupied and relatively sane as a new mum.

My first creative adventures started with painting classes once my son could be left for more than an hour. First it was a “Mums' Night Out with Art” run by a local community centre, where we could try a new art technique each evening, and then a weekend course in colour theory. Sadly, the painting thing, even though I loved it, just didn't fit in with the SAHM schedule - my acrylics kept drying up when I had to attend to my son. It was very frustrating!

Following a house move from Vancouver, life got even more frustrating. As a diversion I took a beginner wirework class at my local bead shop and found that I could wire wrap my seaglass and wear it. Then I discovered Etsy and ebb and flo was born. My hobby had to be financially self-sufficient right from the start and selling online/at craft fairs seemed to work.

What are your favourite materials to work with?
wire .... any kind of wire that will yield to the crochet hook (artistic plated wire, sterling and fine silver, copper, brass), hand dyed roving (alpaca is a firm favourite), glass (handmade fused or beach glass)



What is the hardest and most favourite part of crafting?
The hardest part is finding the time! I craft in, around and in spite of my family in an effort to stay sane ... but family life does come first. There just aren't enough hours in the day to pack it all in and by evening I'm often too tired to do anything other than snooze.

My favourite part of crafting is seeing something take shape in my hands where it has only existed in my head up until that moment. Usually it works (but there are some hideous apparitions best left in the closet ...). I also love selling in person - nothing beats seeing a buyer snatch up one your pieces and get totally excite about finding it! I have had some very passionate customer!



List 5 of your favourite links and why you like them
Flickr: it's great! an online gallery and portfolio (stick to the 'no selling' rulle though!) which you can blog from, order prints thru, join in social networking, make slideshows ...... need I go on?

Made By Hand. By ME: a great multi-purpose site but specifically for crafters. again, you can blog, promote, tweet, make wish lists, make spotlights (like the etsy treasury though not so tedious waiting for a slot to open up!)

Twitter: another multi-function social networking site (are you picking up a theme here? I try to be efficient with my time since it's in short supply). Within your twitterverse and with just a few widgets and applications you can publicise your blog and etsy, etc. listings, update your Facebook status, share interesting news items, promote yourself, and so on

Maille Artisans: I don't look at many how-to's for jewelry on the web but this site is a great one for learning new chainmaille weaves

Giant Hamster: I tweet with a capybara, what more can I say?

Do you have any advice for those in the biz?
Keep a simple accounts sheet for your business, detailing all expenditure and incoming cash. It will help you plot what is working and where your profit is coming from (or being spent on). Do it right from the start! and be diligent!



Art vs. Craft - Are these terms different? Do you consider yourself an artist or a crafter?
I think inwardly there is no difference between the terms. If you consider that art is something that makes you feel accomplished or is beautiful/thought-provoking/satisfying then it's easy to apply to your own work. However, as an external label it's much more difficult to categorise. I think a lot of craft is art, but the distinction seems on a much more personal level. There certainly does seem to be a snobbish cachet about being considered an artist but since I never went to art school it probably flies right over my head.

I have occasionally been referred to as an artist but I'm not sure I would use that term myself. I’ve recently been accepted into a local artists’ cooperative so I guess I must be one! In my dreams it would be lovely to have my work be part of an exhibition - then I might openly refer to myself as an artist!

(photo images courtesy of Amanda / pomomama design)

If you are interested in being featured, please send us an email at info(at)gotcraft(dot)com.

21.6.09

rick rack roses



They are finally back in stock!



Rose pin backs made from rick rack. Contact me if you are interested in one!

19.6.09

poppytalk love



LOok! We are on Poppytalk today! Thanks for the Handmade Nation love.

18.6.09

thanks Sublime Stitching!



Look at what arrived today for the Handmade Nation swag bags!! Thanks to Sublime Stitching for their amazing support to Handmade Nation and Got Craft.



There are about 5 more bags left, so if you don't have your ticket yet, you can purchase them online.

17.6.09

DIY notebook



If you have not picked up the latest Granville Magazine or checked out their website, what are you waiting for?! Seriously! In a nutshell, the magazine is about sustainable city living through local events, shopping local, eating local and living green. I have been a big fan of Granville Online for a while now, so I was tickled pink when HIlary asked me to be their new DIY guest blogger.

The first tutorial that I had ever written and photographed was featured just before Earth Day where I turned used polyethylene shopping bags into zipper pouches. With a focus on DIY and using sustainable materials, my next tutorial was on making your own notebook out of a paperback novel. ** You can find the tutorial here.

I have signed on for 5 more tutorials that will be featured on a monthly basis. If you have a project that you think I should post about that has a focus on sustainable city living, please let me know!

** this tutorial was inspired by the local craft collective, Maked **

16.6.09

the first bite is the sweetest!





Last Sunday was the first bite sized Got Craft monthly show over at Little Mountain Gallery on East 26th and Main Street. A big thank you to everybody that came out! Since the weather was so beautiful that day, all 15 vendors decided to line the street and enjoy some sunshine. However, I think I enjoyed a bit too much sunshine as I am still nursing a sun burn on my left shoulder... yowza!




Of course, a craft fair is never complete without walking home with some goodies. Thanks to Love Bobbie for a beautiful hair band that I am modeling above and a wonderful bar of grapefruit soap from Olive.

15.6.09

GroovyGlassGirl - feature #3



Company: GroovyGlassGirl
Name: Poppy
Website links: www.groovyglassgirl.etsy.com, www.groovyglassgirl.blogspot.com



What do you make?
I make jewellery (I know...everybody does) but mine is unique in that I use a combination of fused glass, stained glass & metal work techniques to achieve the end product.

What or who inspires you?
I love this question because inspiration is found in the most unusual places sometimes. Of course I’m inspired by the organic lines in nature, the silhouettes of Asian architecture or quite often products found in home decor magazines.....but sometimes it’s strange things like the colour of a beverage, a picture in a children’s book while I’m reading to my daughter or the shape of a vintage car.



How did you get started?
I started making jewellery years ago while working in a bead shop and somehow developed a fascination for glass. I then learned stained glass, lampworking, silversmithing & finally glass fusing over the course of several years.



What are your favourite materials to work with?
I guess the most obvious is glass. I also love copper, silver, paper and beads.....I just can’t seem to stop buying beads, it’s an addiction that manycrafty people have I think. I’m also really liking the fusible decal paper that I can use with my laser printer....technology is an amazing tool for crafters/artists.

What is the hardest and most favourite part of crafting?
Definitely the most difficult part of crafting for me is marketing my craft. I am just so lame at sales. The hardest part of actually assembling the products is waiting for the kiln to cool down so I can open it and see the surprise inside! Hot glass is tricky to work with and sometimes the colors don’tcome out the way I thought they were going to come out....this is not always a bad thing! This is probably one of my favourite things about crafting....finding a new color combination by accident is awesome. It’s almost as good as executing a new design perfectly. Crafting for me is also very cathartic, I NEED to do it or my mind feels like it will explode.



List 5 of your favourite links and why you like them
Bakerella: I love to bake, and although my purple Kitchen Aid mixer is lovely to look at...it’s even better for making cupcakes!

Design Sponge: “sneak peek” is awesome....I love seeing inside other people’s homes

Etsy: of course I love shopping for handmade stuff...so how great is it to be able to buy supplies at the same time, yay!

The Nourishing Gourmet: again....more cooking only this one is healthy & delicious recipes

Flickr: photos of everything and anything....I could spend hours on Flickr

Do you have any advice for those in the biz?
Make what you love to make. It’s so much easier to sell yourself when you are truly proud of your accomplishments. Not making what you think people want to buy....but focusing on creating piece’s that you are in love with is the only way to succeed and be happy about it.



Art vs. Craft - Are these terms different? Do you consider yourself an artist or a crafter?

Good question....will you let me know when you find the answer to this one? I feel like I am somewhere in between. Every time I learn a new technique I feel like I’m a step closer to being an “artist” and one day with the wisdom of old age I hope to find the answer to this question..... I still get the feeling that when the words “craft fair” come out of my mouth the people around me that aren’t familiar with modern day fairs are thinking “toilet paper cosies & crocheted baby booties”. I think we need a new term for the modern day crafter....maybe that’s what an artisan is....who knows. What I do know is that the crafters I am surrounded by when I am at local events like “Got Craft” are definitely exceedingly artistic in their craft’s of choice and there is a camaraderie between us thatbrings good vibes....and that is all that matters right now.

(photo images courtesy of Poppy / GroovyGlassGirl)

If you are interested in being featured, please send us an email at info(at)gotcraft(dot)com.

13.6.09

Got Craft? goes bite sized!




Sunday, June 14th (this Sunday!) kicks off our first monthly show! Held the second Sunday of each month between June to November, it features a rotating list of 12 vendors including:

Kohana Jewellery
Olive
Clay Zakka
Earthly Presence
My Little Eye
hudsonny
The Mustache Press
Jen Ellis Designs
My LoLo
The Beautiful Project
Love Bobbie
Aramid Custom Bead Jewelry

... and special guest.. Ehren S. from Little Mountain Gallery

Come check us out ...

Sunday, June 14th, 2009
Little Mountain Gallery - 195 E. 26th Avenue (at Main Street)
11:00am to 4:00pm

Admission by donation to support the Vancouver Craft Mafia

PS. Sunday is also car free day on Main, Commercial and the West End plus Blim market is happening just down the street from us, so don't miss out!

9.6.09

Bueno Style - feature #2



Company: Bueno Style
Name: Christi York
Website links: www.buenostyle.com, www.buenostyle.blogspot.com

What do you make?
Mostly vintage re-worked jewelry. Though past items have included scarves made from "rescued" wool sweaters, brooches made with vintage ribon, and sushi for kitties made with felted wool scraps. And of course there was the organic cotton panties screen printed with "eat organic" on them. Cheeky, yes.

What or who inspires you?
I've always been inspired to work with existing materials; thrift stores have been a huge inspiration to me. One man's trash is another man's treasure is pretty much my personal motto



How did you get started?
I always used to be crafty when I was young. I remember making an entire stable for my toy horses out of cardboard boxes. Shredded newspaper was the straw in their stalls, and I used twine to fashion halters for them. Then I became a graphic designer and channeled my creative energy onto the computer. Then I got burned out on being in front of the computer all day and started making stuff by hand to get away from the that. I rode the wave of the revival of handmade stuff about 6 years ago when I walked into a store wearing one of my scarves and the store owner said she wanted to carry them in her boutique.

What are your favourite materials to work with?
Vintage, thrifted, recycled, refound, back alley finds....

What is the hardest and most favourite part of crafting?
Without a doubt, the hardest part is keeping up with the paperwork that comes along with being a sole proprietor. I took art in high school, not math!
My most favorite part is when I am selling at a market and I get to see one of my creations find the perfect home with a lovely woman who really appreciates the work.



List 5 of your favourite links and why you like them
Etsy: Well, I'm on etsy pretty much every day. It's a been such an amazing, affordable way to set up an on-line store.

Cute Overload: If I have half an hour to waste, I'll get on cuteoverload.com and laugh my guts out.

Super Naturale: A fantastic source for all things creative. I look forward to their newsletters.

Other than that, I try not to spend too much time in front of the computer!

Do you have any advice for those in the biz?
Don't be too precious about the stuff you make. It is a business transaction, and as such, you have to develop a bit of a thick skin and view your products from the customers point of view. That said, don't ever make and sell something you are not 100% in love with... and pricing! Gah - I hate it when I see a new crafter/designer/artist selling their stuff too cheap! Pay yourself a decent hourly wage, remember to include any overhead you have, and for god's sake, build in a profit!


(Burlesque Goddess Joanie Gyoza taken at Indie I Do)

Art vs. Craft - Are these terms different? Do you consider yourself an artist or a crafter?
I think there is a difference... related to artists dedication to a consistent vision / body of work over the years..... but I'm not going to presume to fully answer that question ever!

I consider myself a designer.

Check out Christi on the Steven and Chris show: Episode 120 - April 10 (approx. 25:35)!

(photo images courtesy of Christi York / Bueno Style)

If you are interested in being featured, please send us an email at info(at)gotcraft(dot)com.

2.6.09

The Beautiful Project - feature #1

Today is June 1st which means that it is the start of a new feature on our blog called "the same 8 questions we always ask".

Each week, the Got Craft blog will feature one artist and yes, you guessed it, ask them the same 8 questions!



Company: The Beautiful Project
Name: Jeannette Ordas
Website links: www.beautifulproject.etsy.com, www.thebeautifulproject.ca



What do you make?
I make sweet & sassy note cards, birthday calendars and other lovely paperie under the name The Beautiful Project

What or who inspires you?
I'm inspired by all things vintage, from old cookbooks, pretty linens and fabrics, to old kids books. Anything with a touch of whimsy and cuteness is okay by me! I also find inspiration from just biking around the city and poking around my Strathcona neighbourhood and Chinatown.

How did you get started?
Years ago I used to create a zine and then I moved on to doing web design and spending more time on the computer. After awhile, I decided that I wanted to get back to doing my own work and I really enjoyed coming up with illustrations and working with paper.



What are your favourite materials / ingredients to work with?
Why paper of course!

What is the hardest and most favourite part of crafting?
My favorite part about crafting is seeing an idea that exists inside your head become real. It's so satisfying to look at all the cards and stationery that I've created and feel proud that I'm doing something that I love. Having others love my work, we'll that's pretty awesome too! The worst part? Well, the process of creating can be frustrating because sometimes it's hard to recreate the grandiose visions in my head or part of the printing process goes wrong or the colours don't work out like you'd like them. These are all small frustrations but they are definitely worthwhile since all that hard work does end up getting somewhere. There is no "worst" in creating, it's just that some roads are bumpier than others. You'll end up getting to a wonderful place in the end (*crosses fingers*)

List 5 of your favourite links and why you like them
Poppytalk: A great Vancouver-based design/craft showcase. Jan always has great posts and seeing such great work out there always keeps me on my toes!

Vancouver Slop: Because I'm usually always hungry and I like to go out to eat on occasion.

Pitch Design Union: As a graphic/web design and an illustrator, this blog is filled with inspiration!

Oh So Beautiful Paper: I just discovered this blog last week. It's very inspiring and if you love beautiful paper, then this is the blog for you. I love it!

Instead of 1 last link, I'll tell you that I'm slightly addicted to Tumblr. Tumblr is a photo blog of sorts and I always stumble upon really strange and interesting things. It's really random, weird and wonderful and perfect for people who think that starting a blog is too cumbersome.

Do you have any advice for those in the biz?
My advice would be market yourself. That's the hardest part since it's easy enough to work away in obscurity. But to have others find you, that's the hard part. So read up for advice on blogs, check out Etsy.com for tips, and get out there and network!

Art vs. Craft - Are these terms different? Do you consider yourself an artist or a crafter?
It's really hard for me to define what I do in terms of "Is it art?" or "Is it craft?". The craft movement has exploded in the past 10 years and when I saw others making things that I could make too, that was truly inspiring. The craft realm seems also to be more welcoming to new faces. While I am an illustrator and a designer those are the more commercial forms of art and I'm definitely not a traditional artist. For me, I just love what I do whether it's as a graphic designer, a web designer, an illustrator and a card maker. If you want to call me crafty, I'm happy with that too.



On a related, but side note, Jeannette also writes an amazing food blog called Everybody Loves Sandwiches.

(photo images courtesy of Jeannette Ordas)

If you are interested in being featured, please send us an email at info(at)gotcraft(dot)com.
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