We've had lots of folks ask exactly what the Handmade Holiday Show is and so I thought I'd dedicate a post just to this event. We hosted a Handmade Holiday Show last December because we realized that while we all like to make gifts for our friends and family, we don't always have enough time to make it all. Despite creating schedules that involve beginning our gift knitting back in August. Not finishing your handmade gifts isn't a reason to give up on the idea of a handmade holiday. There are handmade gifts to be found right in our neighborhood!
There are people in our community that devote all of their time (or a large portion of it should they still be working for "the man") to making beautiful, awesome items that they sell to folks like you and me. These people are valuable members of the community, they continue the long tradition of craft in America and they strive to support themselves through their craft. I have long been an advocate for the maker movement and make a point of spending what little hard-earned cash I make through the Gather Here endeavor on handmade, local goods.
I selected this year's vendors on a number of merits. Would I buy his/her goods? Does she/he make products that are complimentary to the crafts we teach? Have they been integral members of our community? Do I respect and admire the maker's business model?
The 2012 lineup is amazing. Featuring makers that you may not think of when you think of Gather Here. And they are all people that we hold in the highest regard. With products that we believe will make gift-giving truly special this year. <PREVIEWEND>
City by the Sea Ceramics - Yarn bowls and ceramic buttons! Amazing rope impressed mugs that I want to have in the Annex - the white ones. But I also have a soft spot for the brown and green combination. Karen's work is finely crafted, the colors exquisite and we think she makes something that everyone would love. But especially for the knitter/crocheter that has everything - one of her yarn bowls would make the perfect gift. And why not a lovely cup because handcrafts with a cup of something is required.
Eat Boutique - I seriously think Maggie Battista (founder) is the bee's knees. And whenever I am desperately seeking something new to cook I check out their website. AND when my fancy, foodie friends who only vacation in New England turn 35, 40, 45...I send them an Eat Boutique gift box. For our last wedding anniversary I sent the Paris box to Noah to commemorate our last vacation before opening the shop. It'll be awhile before we head back for vin chaud and ice skating at the Hotel de Ville but Eat Boutique made it seem less far away.
Egg-a-Go-Go - If you are my friend and you've had a kid recently chances are you've received an "I'm Being Raised by Wolves" onesie. Unless you posted a picture on Instagram of your kid wearing one and then I got you something else. When I first realized that Sarah was the maker of these genius silk screened garments I got all awkward because I think she is just too cool. So excited that we're the ONLY holiday show she's participating in this year!
Kitty Kitty Craft - Hippos and Manatees. Do we really have to say anything else? I met Karissa through twitter. And she's not only been a patron but also an enthusiastic student. She has a day-job that I think is just soooo cool working over at a major publisher and she spends her free time designing and creating plush works. It's amazing. This is her second craft show and we really hope you'll show her some love.
Made in Lowell - Is a gem. Liz is someone I hope to grow up to be. Always with sound advice and a generous spirit with a tv program promoting other makers! She manages to make some of the most detailed felted goods. And I want to own them all. I sport my cupcake pincushion ring whenever I'm sewing something fancy. And I recommend her full-size cupcakes to EVERYONE. Last year she brought adorable spool of thread earrings that I gave to so many of my maker friends.
The Merriweather Council - I'm a hoop enthusiast with a growing collection of pieces by Danielle. Danielle spends her days (and her nights) hand-embroidering jewelry and art in Providence (she used to live near Fenway). A graduate of MassArt and an Etsy Educator, she has shown her work in the shop, taught a number of workshops and will be our February Artist-in-Residence.
Migration Goods - Toast Ornaments! Hydrangea fascinators! Eling creates beautiful and whimsical pieces using hand-cut felt. We were fortunate enough to have her help us with the summer window and got to watch her in action - cutting and piecing felt flowers like a BOSS! Eling's pudgy bear ornaments make great gift wrapping accessories! (I know...)
Pansy Maiden - I proudly carry my waxed canvas Gabrielle bag all over the country. It's been to Texas TWICE this year. The perfect size for all my "things" - passport, wallet, Orange Owl lip balm, Epi-pen, notepad, ink pen, nail file and emergency knitting project. It converts to a backpack when carrying a cross-body bag is awkward. And I get all kinds of compliments all the time. You probably should own some Pansy Maiden (click for awesome behind the brand video), too.
Zooguu - Noah found Jen first. He loves toys. He's in his mid-30s and cannot help but stop at a toy vendor and pick up something. He tried to put one of her monsters in a movie. But the scene never made it to the final cut. But he owns some Zooguu (specifically a zombie narwhal) and he asked Jen to design our store window full of Yetis. He may be her biggest fan. And he wants to share all that is amazing about Zooguu with you.