December 23, 2009

Blatant Promotional Plug

Ok. Just so you know, I follow this blog AND the Twitters. Which is to say, I really think Catherinette Rings has great stuff... very talented for sure... and I'd love to be that good with wire some day.

In the meantime, I'm blogging for additional entries into the give away Catherinette Rings is having - that's going on right now - Because, I have my eye on a Steampunk Sculpture!

So there you go. I've posted about it and now I'll be on my way until my next posting about all the great people I've met at shows this year and what they're doing that you might be interested in.

Here's a preview:

Jessica makes Party Crackers and her pet charity is an orphanage in India (I participated in the party this month where we collectively raised over $600 for said charity). Her Crackers are hand and well made and a lot of fun - AND customizable. Which means you still have time to commission New Year's Eve Crackers for your party. Get Crackin!

December 19, 2009

Drinking Maple Porter and Blahhhgin...

Mmmm, Maple Syrup flavored Porter. Who knew? Saranac, that's who. It's a surprise in every sip. That's what I'm sipping as I write my current thinky little thoughts and post them for all of you to enjoy or ignore as your heart desires...

Well, today was the last market show for the month - the last any kind of show for the year - and January is going to be all about looking for housing and working on online store updates and such like and stuff. Been a weird old year for us crafter types trying to make ends scrape together selling our wares. Next year is bound to be even weirder, but definitely in a better way.

Not inclined to elaborate on any of the stories of the weird right here, right now, but I will regale some of you with clif note versions at some point (If I haven't already done so). In the meantime; if you've got some weirdness story(ies) from this past year you'd like to share; feel free to write them down and leave all appropriately irrelevant stories just below.

After all... Tis the time for sharing! And making sure the Sun returns from it's Wintery slumber.

Monday is the Solstice so Merry Solstice to one and all. Light a fire, some candles and turn on the twinkly lights. Drink something warm and think warm thoughts of the elongated days to come and the warmth that the Sun's return will eventually bring. And of all the people who make life a bit warmer and enjoyable as well.

Or, as the currently somewhat hipster older types such as myself are all spewing for the season:

Happy ChrismaSolstaKwanzukkah!

December 16, 2009

Farm Sanctuary Benefit Art Auction

Some of you may have heard of (or like me, even know) Edie Nadelhaft. She's a well known NYC artist recognized world wide for, among other work, her Bovine portraits. Many of the cows in her paintings are actual Sanctuary rescues. All of them are stunningly painted and oddly lifelike. Absolutely moving.

This Thursday, December 17th, the KumuKumu Gallery will be hosting a reception and silent auction to benefit the Farm Sanctuary so, if you come by, you may be able to aquire one of Edie's amazing oil paintings (or purchase a print from Edie's website if you can't) and find out all about the cow in your new painting in the process. You'll get to live with amazing art while contributing to the rescue (and possibly subsequent painting) of more animals at the same time.

I'll be there, so please say hi if you see me.

Cap'n Trade is Stupid

Environmental Rant alert!

Some of you know I've always been a bit enraged by Obama's announcement that Cap & Trade is one of his Climate Change solutions. Because it's an asinine idea. Doesn't work in Europe, won't work here.

Always been a supporter - and practicer - of the Reduce (Reduce, Reduce first!), Reuse (Reuse, Reuse, Reuse until it falls apart), then Recycle model. I managed the Bernal Heights Recycling Center for a couple years when I lived in San Francisco but I learned that practice long before that from family and educational After School and Saturday Morning TV (ahhh, the 70's;).

I turn off lights and unplug things when they aren't in use and use only as much as I need and try to figure out how to use less whenever I can. I use rechargeable batteries in everything that needs them, compact fluorescents, take my own shopping bags (even the ones for the individual food - I've been doing that since the SF 80's), buy in bulk when I can (from the bulk bins, not huge amounts at discount chains), try to buy only organic or transitional if possible...

My car gets around 35 miles to the gallon, I drive it only when I really have to, and I make sure it's running smoothly to keep the emissions down. When I can afford it, and there are cars made with Carbon Fiber bodies that get 200+ miles to the charge, I'll be getting an electric car. (A completely self contained enviro house is also on the list when the money comes in)

With my online jewelry store; I try to reuse every bit of shipping material I get sent with my supplies (and have a big bucket of the stuff I'm waiting to use) whenever I can (your online jewelry order will let me reuse some more;).

Almost all the metals I use to make my jewelry come from at least some reused, melted down, scrap. That's standard industry practice at this point. And a few suppliers are making a point of letting us all know that some of their metals are 100% from reused. I try to buy parts made in the US when I can (for lots of other reasons too but the closer it is, the less shipping pollution). Plus some of it is vintage and available even closer to my home to begin with. Same with most of my beads and some of my stones. Some stones I'll be using in the near future, I found myself. So no mining involved at all in that jewelry future.

Of course, there is more I could do, but I live in a small apartment so composting and rain water collection isn't an option. Plus, even with home ownership, our society isn't geared toward a lot of environmental household things unless you have a lot of money. Or you renounce all modern living altogether. Obviously, none of us can avoid new things and modern travel and conveniences without going completely Mountain, but every little bit you can do in your personal situation does really help. Some of it could even save you money.

Point is, Cap & Trade just encourages mining and drilling and waste and does nothing to encourage reduction and reuse. No renewable in that equation at all.

James Hansen purports Fee and Dividend instead. I agree. That makes the most sense. And, a few people in the government are moving toward that route with a new bill being worked out now: The CLEAR Act. Not all the way, but in that right direction. So, make sure you write to your government employees (oh yes, you hired them, you pay them - TELL them what you want them to do. That's their job!) and let them know you support the Clear Act and want it stronger in the direction of Fee & Dividend!

Ok, rant over. Now, let's all get out there and make a difference!

[This month 10% of my online sales are going to Habitat for Humanity. I've already got $30 waiting for more sales to add to the amount I'll be sending to them. Next month, 10% goes to NRDC. Hopefully I can get enough sales in January to send even more to them. Hope some of you can help me in that area; maybe even in both months. Thanks in advance!]

December 11, 2009

Tighten Up the Bulls & Bears!

Ok New York peoples... upstate and, well, really the Brooklyn peoples... Saturday I'm winging my way up to Troy to join in on my first ever Tight Knit Winter Market. Heading up there with my friend Eileen (a real artist) to share a space and spread some holiday shopping cheer.

I've got jewelry, Eileen has fine art and will be making Origami Ornaments on the spot as well. You've just got to get your butt outta bed early enough to get there (I'll be out the door at 5:30 in the morning to pick up Eileen on the way North so we can be there with plenty of time to set up before the 9am start!). Yep, Tight Knit starts at 9am and goes to 1pm so you better be quick!

Then Sunday, Phil will be joining me (probably against his will) for a full day at the Bull and Bear Market at The Invisible Dog in Brooklyn. I'll be taking whatever I have left from Saturday (and some tools and a few things to make rings on demand if I have time) out to Brooklyn to party with the Bull and Bear for the Recession Art event of the season.

For that one, you have no sleeping in too late excuses 'cause it runs from 11am to 8pm! Plenty of time to get your butts over for a handmade shopping extravaganza!

Well, I'm going to try to get a couple things made before tomorrow, so I'm off. Hope to see some of you this weekend, with cash in hand (hint hint;). Ok, I'm happy with a smiling face and a warm - I saw it on your blog - hello too...

December 10, 2009

Bring Food, Buy Handmade

Well, we raised a fair bit of money yesterday... $618! That means we'll be able to sponsor 2 children for next year. That's food etc. for a whole year for two orphans. Yay everyone who came and shopped!

Today I'm heading off to New Haven, CT, leaving this afternoon, for an evening Holiday Arts & Crafts Market at the John C. Daniels School (map is linked to the Custom Adornments banner in the side bar). Vendor fees are going to benefit Music Programs in CT schools and you can bring food for the CT Food Bank tonight when you come too.

569 Congress Ave in downtown New Haven, 6-8:30 pm. Handmade and one of a kind is sure to be represented by more people than just me.

Hope you can make it and be sure to stop by my table and say hi if you do.

December 7, 2009

Charity Craft Party Anyone?!

If you're in the Northern New Jersey/Lower Hudson Valley area of Metro NY, Please stop by on Wednesday and pick up some one of a kind, handmade gifts. At least 10% of everyone's sales for the day are going to the charity and there will be raffles to win an item from each crafter as well.

I've got the map for this event linked to the banner under "Come See Me in December" in the sidebar. Feel free to send this to all your friends, neighbors and relatives in the area, and hope to see you on Wednesday!

Oh, and if you can't make it and you want your purchases this season to contribute to a charity; 10% of all sales on my etsy store this month goes to Habitat for Humanities (and you get Free US shipping too).

Happy conscientious shopping!

December 3, 2009

Time for Indiemade Craft Market!

Saturday is the day. The 2nd Annual, Indiemade Craft Market in Allentown, PA. Last year was such a blast and I've been looking forward to this years event since, well, since the last one was over!

So, 10am is the time to be there... well, maybe earlier cause there was a line waiting to get in last year. Why? So you can Get yourself one of 50 swag bags - and a little catseye pendant made by me - and first dibs on all the handmade goods made by the wonderfully amazing talent that will be there. Yes, I am gushing. You will too...

It's at 1221 S. Front Street in the Starlight Ballroom. You can click on the Custom Adornments banner in the sidebar (under "Come See Me in December") for a map link to the show.

Hope to see you there - I have a new Copper and mostly 1950's Vintage Japanese Lampwork collection I made just for this show. So, if you come, you'll be one of the first ones to get a piece of it - or two...

I know you can't really tell what they look like from these pictures, but I think you can get something of an idea. 5 different beads ranging in date from 1948 to 1953. 6 different necklace and bracelet sets with at least two matching pairs of earrings for each set. First ones to look at them get the option to actually buy a full set, and a nice discount for getting a set instead of breaking them up. Because I'm sure they'll get broken up quickly, they usually do. So if you're coming to the Starlight on Saturday, and like your jewelry in sets (or want to give a different piece of the set to different friends or relatives), make sure you get there early for this new collection in Falltastic colors that are bright and big enough to wear during the winter and summer too.

Oh, and I haven't come up with a name for the collection yet. So, if you have any good ideas for this collection name, please feel free to post it in a comment. If you come up with a good one, that I wind up using, I'll make sure you get credit and a little thank you gift as well!

So, ya. Hope to see you Saturday!