2015 Handmade Holiday Vendor Spotlight: Smith Dry Goods



Happy Holidays! We are running a week long series of blog posts featuring a few of the 2015 Handmade Holiday Marketvendors. Last year we had a blast over at The Uniun in Union Square and we're thrilled that our future home, the old Inman Square Supermarket is ready for visitors. (Forgive us for not having more done but building a store is like herding cats!)

Today we'd love to introduce you to Liz Smith of Smith Dry Goods. We adore Liz's work and have our own collection of her needle-felted ornaments and pin cushions. We think no tree is quite complete without one of Liz's ornaments.

Tell us about your business name.

I changed my name from Made in Lowell to Smith Dry Goods in January. Someone wanted to use Made in Lowell for a larger mission in the city and since I was looking to change and I liked his project, I agreed to sell him the name. Smith is a family name, it's my mother's name and also my married name, Dry Goods evokes the old timey shops I remember as a kid where you could buy linens and objects for the home. I've been sewing a lot the past 4 years and I plan to include sewn items in the future, inspired by and including vintage textiles.

When did you decide to launch your business? <PREVIEWEND>

I've been making and selling thing since I was a little kid. I'd set up a table in the living room with miniatures I'd made and my mom would buy them. I did my first craft show outside the home in the late 1980s.


Where do you source your materials/product?

I love buying vintage at flea markets and thrifts stores, I love buying from small shops and other makers who dye the wool and spin the yarns I use.

How do you stay inspired?

I follow my heart's fondest interests. Whatever has me excited I go down that trail and see where it leads. Not everything becomes an item for sale, but it all informs my creative process.

Do you have any advice for other small business owners or would-be-small-business-owners?

Listen to your instincts about what really interests you, make what you really want to make. That's where the spark lies that illuminates the work you present to the public.

What do you want this holiday season?

I want my friends and family to have peace and joy and relaxed, quiet moments.

Any exciting things coming up in 2016, business or otherwise?

I am very excited to present sewn items in my product line for next year; zip pouches, coasters, and pillow covers!

 


You'll find Liz and her gorgeous handmade items on Saturday, December 19th at 1343 Cambridge Street along with 25 other local vendors. We can't wait to show you the new location and introduce you to the makers! See you on the 19th!



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2015 Handmade Holiday Market Vendor Spotlight: Katrinkles


Happy Holidays! We are running a week long series of blog posts featuring a few of the 2015 Handmade Holiday Marketvendors. Last year we had a blast over at The Uniun in Union Square and we're thrilled that our future home, the old Inman Square Supermarket is ready for visitors. (Forgive us for not having more done but building a store is like herding cats!)

Today we'd like to introduce you to Katy Westcott of Katrinkles. As knitters and stitchers we are always looking for awesome buttons and notions so when we discovered Katy, we wanted everyone we knew to become fans. Her product line has expanded so much in the past three years and we know you'll love everything.

Tell us about your business name.

Katrinkles (KUH-trinklz) is a silly nickname that my mom called me as a kid. Without putting much thought into it, it eventually became my business name. At first I would kind of cringe when I heard it being used but I've more recently embraced it. Now I feel like it really works with the fun, cutesy line my brand has become and I'm really thankful for it. 

When did you decide to launch your business?

I don't think I consciously decided to launch a business, it just kind of happened. <PREVIEWEND>After taking a laser cutting workshop, I began making buttons to adorn my own knits with. I started selling them because people asked me to and Katrinkles was born as a hobby business I worked on in tandem with designing jewelry full time. As it got busier in 2012I started working part time and earlier this year I got so busy with Katrinkles that I started doing it full time. I feel so lucky that it has worked out for me to be able to focus all of my time on something that I love so much!

Where do you source your materials/product?

I make everything myself in my live/work studio. It's important to me that I'm using a material that is plentiful and certified sustainable. I also chose bamboo because of its strength and antibacterial properties.


How do you stay inspired?

Having a dog is so awesome because he's always reminding me that it's time to go outside. Max and I both need fresh air periodically to recharge in our own ways. We especially love the beach year round but are also pretty excited about walks in the woods. I'm also due for an art museum day (without the dog). There are so many great ones around and I always leave feeling so full of inspiration and ideas.

Do you have any advice for other small business owners or would-be-small-business-owners?

It's important to set boundaries for yourself. I take most evenings off to knit on the couch with my family so that I don't lose touch with what's important in my life.

What do you want this holiday season?

I'm most excited to take some time off to do some sewing! I started a coat in November with my Oma that I can't wait to finish after Christmas.

Any exciting things coming up in 2016, business or otherwise?

2016 is going to be busy! The events page on my website is already blooming with fiber related shows. The first of which is the Knitting Weekend at Historic Slater Mill in January, where I will be vending in the marketplace. There are also workshops, a Friday night wine and cheese lecture, knit wear trunk shows and book signings. 2015 has been amazing, I am constantly feeling so thankful for being able to do what I do. 


 

You'll find Katy and Katrinkles awesomeness on Saturday, December 19th at 1343 Cambridge Street along with 25 other local vendors. We can't wait to show you the new location and introduce you to all these incredible makers! See you on the 19th!



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2015 Handmade Holiday Vendor Spotlight: little pancakes


Happy Holidays! We are running a week long series of blog posts featuring a few of the 2015 Handmade Holiday Market vendors. Last year we had a blast over at The Uniun in Union Square and we're thrilled that our future home, the old Inman Square Supermarket is ready for visitors. (Forgive us for not having more done but building a store is like herding cats!)

Today we'd love to introduce you to Melissa of little pancakes ! We discovered Melissa's work on Instagram  and when we learned she was right up the road from our new location we knew she had to join us for the annual market.


Tell us about your business name.

Everyone asks how I got the name little pancakes, or are disappointed that i'm not selling pancakes. I never intended it to be a business name, I had a former preschool student who called me Melissa pancakes, and I thought little pancakes seemed like a cute play on that. I also really love eating them.

When did you decide to launch your business?

I was working in a very emotionally demanding job and needed something to get my mind off things. After trying out a couple shows while it was still a hobby and having people actually pay me money for what I made I knew it could be something more! Now it's my full time job!

 <PREVIEWEND>

Where do you source your materials/product?

I use a mix of raw metals, gemstones, and vintage findings. The raw materials I make sure are all ethically sourced, and the vintage materials I get from all over the place. Many of them are dead stock/never used supplies that are 30+ years old. My mom is an antiques dealer, and she brings me some fun stuff to take apart.

How do you stay inspired?

I give myself projects that I know are too hard for me and force myself to try and learn as I go. Sometimes I mess them up but it's helped me get better at my craft and keeps things fresh, so I don't get in a rut.

Do you have any advice for other small business owners or would-be-small-business-owners?

Make things you love and other people will love them too. The jewelry I make is what I would want to wear (and do wear every day). If I created things I didn't like, I think it would show in my work.

You'll find Melissa Wallace and the little pancakes collection of fine jewelry on Saturday, December 19th at 1343 Cambridge Street along with 25 other local vendors. We can't wait to show you the new location and introduce you to the makers in your neighborhood! See you on the 19th!


 

 


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2015 Handmade Holiday Vendor Spotlight: Vessel Candle Co


Happy Holidays! We are running a week long series of blog posts featuring a few of the 2015 Handmade Holiday Market vendors. Last year we had a blast over at The Uniun in Union Square and we're thrilled that our future home, the old Inman Square Supermarket is ready for visitors. (Forgive us for not having more done but building a store is like herding cats!)

Today we'd love to introduce you to Ari and Sarah, the team behind Vessel Candle Co.  From beautiful packaging to even more beautiful scents, you'll want to pick up a candle (or six) for someone (or yourself).

 

When did you decide to launch your business?

We officially launched our business in 2013. Both of us love candles and have them throughout our homes. We're always looking for new crafts to try, and one day we decided to try making candles. We loved it so much that we kept at it, giving away candles as gifts to friends and family and then eventually selling them.<PREVIEWEND>


Do you have any advice for other small business owners or would-be-small-business-owners?

If you love what you do, stick with it. We both currently still work full-time jobs during the week, and it can be overwhelming at times to do everything. If there's a passion behind your work, let that be the driving force. Be proud and work hard, and it will pay off.

What do you want this holiday season?

We're looking forward to treating ourselves to some reflexology!

Any exciting things coming up in 2016, business or otherwise?

We've launched our Zodiac line this season, and we've had an amazing response! For 2016, we'll continue making our year-round candle scents as well as creating floral arrangements for weddings and events for our floral design business, Moonstone & Moss.

 

 

 

You'll find Ari and Sarah and Vessel Candle Co. products on Saturday, December 19th at 1343 Cambridge Street along with 25 other local vendors. We can't wait to show you the new location and introduce you to the makers in your neighborhood! See you on the 19th!

 

 


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2015 Handmade Holiday Vendor Spotlight: Black Market Modern Vintage


Happy Holidays! We are running a week long series of blog posts featuring a few of the 2015 Handmade Holiday Market vendors. Last year we had a blast over at The Uniun in Union Square and we're thrilled that our future home, the old Inman Square Supermarket is ready for visitors. (Forgive us for not having more done but building a store is like herding cats!)

Today we'd love to introduce you to Becky Tanger of Black Market Modern Vintage. We discovered Becky's amazing vintage collections at one of Forge Baking Co's pop-up events and knew that we had to invite her to this year's market. 

 

Tell us about your business name.

My dad came up with the name. He had wanted to have a company named The Black Market when he was younger, so I stole it from him (with permission, of course) and added the "Modern Vintage" part at the end.<PREVIEWEND>


When did you decide to launch your business?

Just over a year ago, when I kept finding amazing pieces out in the wild. I actually started bigger, with this one amazing Kent Coffey bedroom suite that I sold out of my parents garage. Since then I have focused on smaller household items (bar ware is a strong category for us), a change that came organically if influenced somewhat by my tiny car and storage space. Furniture is still a passion, though.

Where do you source your materials/product?

So many places! The usual spots like thrift stores and estate sales, but now I have people getting in touch with me to pick their attics and garages. Some days it's like living in an episode of American Pickers. So fun!

How do you stay inspired?

It's so easy with great design. Well designed items made 60 years ago in the USA that are still perfect and functional today are like my holy grail. The items themselves just sing to me, especially some sexy tapered legs on a desk, or a sleek, vibrant art glass piece. It's really the thrill of the hunt, finding that diamond in the riff raff. Finding a vintage paint by number in a perfect frame leaves me breathless, like a lioness fresh off the kill. It's addicting. Also, one of the best things about this work is that it is inherently sustainable. I save unwanted items from the landfill, and our clients are able to take home gorgeous goods with a very small carbon footprint. That makes me feel so good as a business owner.


Do you have any advice for other small business owners or would-be-small-business-owners?

Stick with your idea. Do You. Ignore the clatter and focus on what you want, and know that no one will do it for you. Have fun and keep your receipts!

What do you want this holiday season?

A pony.

Any exciting things coming up in 2016, business or otherwise?

 

2015 was an amazing year for me, a major time of growth and discovery. 2016 is when I will be able to exercise some new muscles and I am so excited for the future!

 

 

 

You'll find Becky and Black Market Modern Vintage on Saturday, December 19th at 1343 Cambridge Street along with 25 other local vendors. We can't wait to show you the new location and introduce you to the makers! See you on the 19th!


 


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2015 Handmade Holiday Vendor Spotlight: Zooguu


Happy Holidays! We are running a week long series of blog posts featuring a few of the 2015 Handmade Holiday Market vendors. Last year we had a blast over at The Uniun in Union Square and we're thrilled that our future home, the old Inman Square Supermarket is ready for visitors. (Forgive us for not having more done but building a store is like herding cats!)

Today we'd love to introduce you to Jennifer Gubicza a toymaker and small business owner of Zooguu. We've been fans of Zooguu since even before we opened gather here and we've had the pleasure of having Jen teach workshops so you, too, can make something awesome.

Tell us about your business name.

Zooguu is a combination of our last name (Gubicza) and "zoo" to represent animals. Plus, it rhymes, is easy to remember & the url wasn't taken. ;) <PREVIEWEND>

When did you decide to launch your business?

May of 2008. I was given an opportunity to quit my job as a graphic designer to try to make it as a full time toymaker. Sounds kind-of crazy, but here I am seven years later.

 

How do you stay inspired?

I do a lot of craft shows & talk to a lot of people. Seeing others excited by my work pushes me to keep going. I also meet up with other makers in my area once a month to share sucesses & failures. That is always very supportive & inspiring. Plus, I feel like I just have to be making things at all times.

Do you have any advice for other small business owners or would-be-small-business-owners?

Accept help for the things you need help with. One person cannot do it all.

  

What do you want this holiday season?

Peace on Earth & Goodwill towards All, obviously. Other than that, to be able to spend a little bit of time off enjoying the company of family & friends.

Any exciting things coming up in 2016, business or otherwise?

I am collaborating with a good friend, Jonathan Reinecke, on a show featuring his paintings and my faux taxidermy of mythical creatures at the Gulu-Gulu in Salem in March. I'm thrilled to have some time to focus on creating new work & stretching my skills.

You'll find Zooguu and Jen on Saturday, December 19th at 1343 Cambridge Street along with 25 other local vendors. We can't wait to show you the new location and introduce you to the makers! See you on the 19th!

 


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2015 Handmade Holiday Vendor Spotlight: kitchen + kraft



Happy Holidays! We are running a week long series of blog posts featuring a few of the 2015 Handmade Holiday Market vendors. Last year we had a blast over at The Uniun in Union Square and we're thrilled that our future home, the old Inman Square Supermarket is ready for visitors. (Forgive us for not having more done but building a store is like herding cats!)

Today we'd love to introduce you to Tori Kendrew, the mastermind behind kitchen + kraft. We met Tori through our former embroidery instructor and artist, Carla Goodwin and she's just been someone we've been excited to follow. This year she launched her small business and we think you'll love what she creates.

Tell us about your business name.

kitchen + kraft all started as an on-a-whim Instagram bio I put on my account. I was posting pictures (and still am) of my art and eats. One day it hit me like a ton of bricks that that was it, that was my business name! <PREVIEWEND>It totally fit with the natural dyeing that I do and how dyeing from plants and vegetables is so closely related to cooking. I spell kraft with a "k" because of my last name.

How do you stay inspired?

Inspiration for sure comes from other like-minded, creative people. It is so nice to be surrounded by people that have similar goals. I also cook a lot and the beauty of food and the art of cooking inspires me as well.


What do you want this holiday season?

This holiday I want time with the people that are special to me. Especially in the world we're living in, you realize you never quite know what's going to happen and you can't take life, family or friends for granted. What I need though, that's a different question, ha! I need a new sewing machine.

Do you have any advice for other small business owners or would-be-small-business-owners ?

Take the leap! Do it! You know you want to! And if you are truly passionate and positive, good things will come your way!


You'll find Tori and kitchen + kraft on Saturday, December 19th at 1343 Cambridge Street along with 25 other local vendors. We can't wait to show you the new location and introduce you to some of our favorite local makers! See you on the 19th!

 


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Sharing the Knowledge: Introducing Video Tutorials by gather here


As 2014 was winding down we looked back at the last couple of years and assessed how we were meeting our mission. One of the founding ideas behind gather here has been "share all the knowledge" and with a class schedule that we think is stellar we think we've done a fine job at sharing our craft within Greater Boston. But we wanted to do even more. Combining our background in film/television and our love of craft, we decided the next step for gather here would be the launch of video tutorials. We compiled a list of the techniques we are most often asked about in the store, via email, and in our classes and mapped out a plan to launch a new tutorial each month. 

<PREVIEWEND>

We hired Ryan McCoy Johnson, the filmmaker behind our last two videos to shoot and edit the series. And we asked our team to share their skills with all of you. Maritza Soto was a natural on camera. She took direction and paid close attention to exactly how she did each step on camera so she could repeat those steps when necessary. And she was a great sport when Virginia demanded we do reshoots for the first tutorial. We even learned the importance of story boards, even though as film crew members we should already know better!

Here's our first tutorial: How to Attach a Binding to a Quilt featuring Maritza Soto. We hope you find the tutorial informative and that it makes your next quilt project just a little bit easier.


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12 Days of Making: On Day 12 there was wine


On the 12th day of Christmas my true love gave to me:

Heather Lins' 12 month stitch-it-yourself Gemstones Geometry Calendar

And we stitched it together while sitting in front of the fire, surrounded by helpful cats. Enjoying some Vin Chaud. If you don't have a calendar to stitch today, you should make this mulled wine that reminds us of Christmas in Paris. Because it's officially winter. And we are now officially back to work.<PREVIEWEND>


Ingredients:

2 bottles of red wine (preferably Beaujolais)1 cup cassis1 tbs orange zest1 tbs lemon zest2 cinnamon sticks (of average size)5 cardamom pods5 whole cloves6 allspice berries1 tsp ground nutmeg

Directions:

  • Pour the Beaujolais and cassis in a large pot.
  • Add zest and sachet of spices.
  • Heat mixture until it begins to simmer.
  • Lower heat and steep for 30 minutes.
  • Serve warm (obviously) and garnish with orange or lemon slices.



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12 Days of Making: On Day 11 we splurged


On the 11th day of Christmas my true love gave to me:

11 yards of Merchant and Mills Linen in Silt Grey.

For a new duvet cover and matching pillowcases. It's been on our list for four years and finally, here we are making them! With button closures to boot! And matching pillow cases. This is my favorite pillowcase tutorial - 30 minutes and you have some beautiful pillowcases.



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