Wednesday, October 31, 2007

CRAFTY CHAT: elemental connections - a discussion of sustainable craft practices

Via Akimbo

Chantal Gilbert, La Caresse, Argent sterling, palissandre, vison, lame en acier damasse 30 cm, 2004

A Discussion of Sustainable Craft Practices
On Sunday November 4th at 2:00 pm, the Ontario Crafts Council is hosting a panel discussion in support of their current exhibition, Elemental Connections: An Exhibition of Sustainable Craft.

Panelists include exhibiting artists Tara Bursey and Ann Schneider, in addition to Eric Nay, Faculty in the Liberal Arts department at OCAD, and Janna Hiemstra, student intern at the OCC. Arlene Gehring, curator of the exhibition, will moderate the discussion as it deals with the relationship between craft, sustainability, and the creative processes of making.

The panel discussion will take place at the Lennox Gallery, 12 Ossington Ave, and will be followed by refreshments and a tour of the exhibition at the OCC gallery on 990 Queen St. W.

Arlene Gehring is an independent curator and exhibition coordinator living in Toronto, Ontario. She works extensively in the cultural sector, with specific interest in contemporary crafts. Her most recent shows have been "Found in Translation," at the Japan Foundation Toronto, "Manifesta," curated with Vivienne Jones at Gallery Stratford and the Cambridge Galleries, and "Canadian Clay" at the Lacoste Gallery, Concord, Mass. Arlene has acted as the moderator for the panel presentation "Evolution/Revolution: Refining or Redefining the Craft Tradition" as part of the 2006 Saidye Bronfman Presentation. Additionally, she has worked extensively in the arts community as a Director on various art organization boards.

Tara Bursey is a recent graduate of the Toronto School of Art's diploma program, and a former student at Ontario College of Art and Design. An artist whose practice encompasses sculpture and installation as well as drawing, printmaking and craft, Tara's work is characterized by its ethereal quality, and an often obsessive use of repetition, pattern and delicate sculptural materials such as eggshells, garlic skin, found garments and paper. In addition to her work as a fine artist, Tara operates actively within Toronto's independent music and small-press communities as a DJ, illustrator, designer and writer. She was born and raised in Toronto, Canada.

Ann Schneider was introduced to weaving in 1973 at the Fundy School of Fine Arts. She then discovered bentwood willow furniture during her time as the Crafts Coordinator for the Owen Sound Summerfolk Music and Craft Festival. After taking a course with Maggie Longsworth at the Haliburton School of fine arts, she began to develop her own designs that combined weaving techniques with local and found wood materials. In 1996 Ann started her own business "Keppelstone Willow Works", alongside of teaching, doing shows, and creating custom work. Today Ann lives in Georgian Bluffs on the Niagara escarpment with her partner and two cats and one Great Pyrenees Dog.

Eric Nay is currently a member of the faculty of Liberal Studies at the Ontario College of Art & Design, teaching Design History, Theory and Criticism with a joint appointment in the Faculty of Design teaching Industrial Design, and serving as one of the Assistant Deans of Liberal Studies. His primary research interests are in global architecture and material and cultural sustainability. He has a broad range of research experience focusing on modern development and global design solutions in emerging economies with published written research (Open House International, United Kingdom, 2000). Eric is an active writer, presenter and advocate for increasing knowledge of sustainability in design education and regularly and internationally contributes to conferences and symposia across disciplines in this emergent area of intellectual inquiry.

Janna Hiemstra received her BA in Philosophy from the Kings University College, and is currently studying Curatorial Studies at OCAD. She has also been working as a student intern at the OCC since this past summer. Combining her experience as a two-year studio assistant at Cobble Hill Pottery in B.C. with an interest in environmental practices, she has been one of the enthusiastic organizers for the Elemental Connections exhibition.

Please RSVP to Janna Hiemstra at (416) 925-4222 ext. 225, or

EXHIBITION:viktor tinkl making things


Check out this kookster show from our friends in the 'Saug:

Viktor Tinkl: Making Things
On view until December 7th
Art Gallery of Mississauga

Viktor Tinkl is driven by a compulsion to make things, a compulsion he describes as being brought on by "bugging". Tinkl's fantastic assemblages, sculptures and kinetic works, all things he makes from other things, seem to pour from the artist, into his home, studio and property. Bits of wood, ribbon, denture molds, fur and cans are just some of the materials which are detritus to the rest of us but, are compelling to Tinkl. His making is not compelled by the promise of exhibitions, theory and academia. He is familiar with both the former and the latter. Tinkl was a faculty member at the Ontario College of Art, as it was then known, from 1973 to 2000. He is also a graduate of the same institution.

Tinkl was initially unreceptive to this exhibition. It required the persuasion of all parties involved, including Viktor's wife Judith, for the artist to agree, albeit with reluctance. His reluctance was brought on by his seasoned knowledge of the time commitment required for an exhibition including, discussions with curators and preparation of artworks, activities that take away time from his making.

The multitude of works selected for this exhibition include, two central pieces never seen outside the artist's property: The Meeting (1999) and Circle (2006). The Meeting incorporates denture moulds into over twenty characters while, Circle includes the heads of skinned foxes among other found objects.

Providing further insight into the practice of Viktor Tinkl is a fifty-five page colour catalogue which accompanies the exhibition with introductions by Robert Freeman and Linda Jansma. Also included are a revealing interview with the artist by Linda Jansma and essay by Duncan Farnan.

"You just make stuff and you make more stuff. a tin can-when you drink enough apple juice and rum mixture you save all the tin cans and you stuff smaller things in them and you have an abundance of these cans. And then one day you take a pair of shears and start cutting into the cans because you need a piece of tin and then you realize that cutting into the can is quite a good experience and the cutting itself is the exciting part."
-Viktor Tinkl

Location: Art Gallery of Mississauga, Mississauga Civic Centre, Ground Floor, 300 City Centre Drive, Mississauga, ON L5B 3C1
Admission: Free
Hours: Weekdays 9 am to 5 pm, weekends Noon to 4 pm
*Call 905 896 5088 to confirm hours

For more information on publications, programming and activities at the Art Gallery of Mississauga, please call (905) 896‑5076 or view the Gallery's website at

Got something to say about Mississauga's cultural scene? Comment at

Monday, October 29, 2007

GET TOGETHER& EXHIBITION: quilting circle & CRAFT UP at yyz

Ginger Brooks Takahashi, An Army of Lovers Cannot Fail, 2004-ongoing, quilt detail. Image courtesy of the artist.

I'm updating this post as new info has come in re: the exhibits & a CRAFT UP party.

TCA was involved a little bit in the planning of this great looking craftstravagaza at YYZ. Also, TCA mailing list engineer Susan is directing the Craft Show & Tell on December 6th which will be a great opportunity for us to connect offline around stuff we're making. Please come by and check it out, chat about craft & and quilt it up!

3 NOVEMBER 2007 – 15 DECEMBER 2007

YYZ opens Craft Up, a new group exhibition and launches the latest issue of the YYZINE featuring an Artist’s Project by Daryl Vocat.


YYZ presents the work of five artists in Craft Up – Ginger Brooks Takahashi, Heather Goodchild, Allyson Mitchell, Stephanie Rogerson, Andrea Vander Kooij and three person collective: the Washboard Collective, (comprised of Michele Costa, Melody Starkweather and April Walsh), share a passion for textiles and are united in a way of working with the materials that is process-based, reusing cloth, threads and garments that possessed a life and history prior to becoming art objects.

Ginger Brooks Takahashi will present her quilting forum, An Army of Lovers Cannot Fail, at the opening reception and again on SATURDAY 3 NOVEMBER 2007 at 3:00 PM. Drop by if you are a quilting bee or a wanna be quilter. Bring a quilting project you are working on to share and discuss.

Enjoy an evening with SPINS & NEEDLES, the first Canadian-established, independent, cultural event that mixes hip do-it-yourself projects with funky music spun by DJs is coming to YYZ. Based in Ottawa, Canada, the event was created in 2005 by organizers Melanie Yugo (the crafter/designer) and Jason Pelletier (the DJ). For a small cover charge, gain access to materials and instructions to make a featured art/craft project while having a few drinks and listening to DJs spin beats. Getting messy and creative is key. YYZ members are free. Non-members: $5. So come on down and get crafty!

Are you working on a new project and need some feedback? Do you want to get together and see what other people are working on? Then the YYZ’s CRAFT SHOW & TELL is just for you! This is a casual exercise in community building and a relaxed way to network with peers. Seating is limited. Contact Ana Barajas at for more details.

GINGER BROOKS TAKAHASHI lives in New York, maintaining a social, project-based practice, collaborating with kindred spirits. Among them, LTTR, a queer and feminist art journal, and project Mobilivre-Bookmobile project, a traveling exhibit of artist books and zines, 2000-05. LTTR has presented public projects at Documenta 12 Magazine, The Generali Foundation, The Kitchen, Art In General, and Printed Matter, and received Printed Matter's Emerging Artist Publication Award in 2005. Brooks was part of the Whitney Independent Study Program in 2007. She has exhibited at numerous venues including Artists Space (New York), Art Metropole (Toronto), La Centrale (Montreal), Space 1026 (Philadelphia), and The Institute of Contemporary Art (Philadelphia).

HEATHER GOODCHILD works mainly with fiber, producing felt mosaics, dioramas, silk-screened textiles and quilts. Goodchild is best known for her soft-sculpture creatures: The Mammals. American folk music and artwork, the symbolism of Freemasonry, and principles of sacred geometry inspire Goodchild’s practice. Goodchild’s work has been exhibited at various venues including the Toronto Outdoor Art Exhibition, the Gladstone Hotel (Toronto), sis boom bah gallery (Toronto), and at the Douglas Udell gallery (Edmonton). Goodchild lives and works in Toronto.

ALLYSON MITCHELL is a maximalist artist working predominantly in sculpture, installation and film. Since 1997, Mitchell has been melding feminism and pop culture to play with contemporary ideas about sexuality, autobiography, and the body, largely through the use of reclaimed textile and abandoned craft. Mitchell has exhibited in galleries and festivals across Canada, the US, Europe and East Asia. She has also performed extensively with Pretty Porky and Pissed Off, a fat performance troupe, as well as publishing both writing and music. She recently completed her PhD in Women’s Studies at York University, where she also teaches cultural studies. Mitchell's work has been generously supported by the Chalmers Foundation, Canada Council for the Arts, the Ontario and Toronto Arts Councils, and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada.

STEPHANIE ROGERSON is an independent writer, curator and artist. She views her varied practice as a continuum of creative output and critical analysis. Currently the Exhibition Coordinator at Gallery 44, Stephanie is responsible for all aspects of programming. She has worked in artist-run culture, taught in both academic and non-academic settings, curated an array of events such as transgender and gender-queer performance art, and multi-media installations dealing with HIV/AIDS. In 2002, research began on an independent writing project on early snapshot photography and queer representation. This research project has brought Rogerson to several queer conferences as an invited lecturer to several universities in the US and Europe. Stephanie graduated from the School of Visual Arts M.F.A program in photography and related media, in 1999.

ANDREA VANDER KOOIJ is a Montreal based artist who holds an MFA degree with a concentration in Fibre from Concordia University. In 2005 she successfully defended her thesis exhibition Effloressence, which involved both 17th century embroidery techniques and performance art. Her practice incorporates traditional craft-based mediums such as knitting, crocheting and embroidery as well as elements of performance. Her work addresses gender issues and the body, as well as challenging notions of art, craft and labour. She enjoys working with found/reclaimed material as well as food. Recent projects include exhibitions at the Portland Museum of Contemporary Craft and the Gladstone Hotel (Toronto).

THE WASHBOARD COLLECTIVE is MICHELE COSTA, MELODY STARKWEATHER and APRIL WALSH. Formed in 2006 the Toronto-based Collective represents the convergence and transformation of three distinct practices into a collaborative process. This way of working is directly descendent of traditional craft practices, such as sewing circles and quilting bees. The Collective collaborates on all processes: from gathering materials, to construction and final embellishments. Sometimes this entails passing work from hand to hand, and other times pieces are created simultaneously, together. Salvaged linens are transformed to visually represent biomedical anatomies and themes of the body. Their work references mortality—the fragility of the human existence—accentuated by the time-based degradation of the materials used. However, in their careful and obsessive collecting, crafting, embellishing and nostalgia are equally at play.

140 – 401 Richmond St W
T: 416.598.4546
F: 416.598.2282
Gallery hours: Tuesday to Saturday,
11AM to 5PM.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

CRAFTY CORRESPONDENT: angelune at the Creativ Festival

what this show may lack in hipness, it sure makes up for in bang for your buck. fabric, notions, all kinds of crafting supplies for really good prices! i saw amy butler fabrics, joel dewberry, kaffe fasset, denyse schmidt... and tons of really nice japanese and asian fabrics. there were fat quarters (a half meter cut in half width-wise) for as little as $1.99 for plain fabrics, and $3-5 for fancier fabrics. i told myself not to spend too much money this year, but as always, len's mill booth had loads of cheap fabrics and i just had to get some. as a quilter, i found a lot of inspiration in the quilter's block, there were a lot of books and beautiful quilts made using modern fabrics. we all know crafting isn't just for grannies, but the ladies at this show have some serious talent (and time)!soy silk yarn
the show is getting hip to the green trend (which i hope is here to stay), with booths selling soy, bamboo, hemp and other sustainable fibres and fabrics. whether you are a sewer, knitter, crocheter, beader or jewelry maker or paper crafter, there are deals for everyone.
cool patterned papers at discount scrapbook supplies i am not a scrapbooker, but i did see so many pretty papers and die-cutting tools while wandering the paper crafts section that it made me want to start! i spotted some modern printed papers and decals with bird and flower motifs.

if you're looking for some deals and inspiration, check out the creativ festival. the next event is scheduled for april 2008, and the spring show is held a little further west, at the international centre.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

CRAFTIVISM: inner city kids need your knitting supplies

may1 knit
Originally uploaded by noearlybird

TCA reader Danielle clued us in to this Torontoist post about a great initiative to keep inner city kids' hands busy: a school Knitting Club. Apparently the youngguns are all over it, and they need your needles & yarn to keep up with demand. Check out the post to find out more.

GET SCHOOLED: intro to fabric printing


Upcoming Class- only a few spots left!

Introduction to Screen-Printing on Fabric

Thursday's 6:30-9:30
November 15-December 20

The Contemporary Textile Studio Co-op
401 Richmond St. W
Studio 109

For registration information, please contact

Thursday, October 25, 2007

CRAFTY HAPPENING: toronto launch party for worn shorts issue 5


WORN Fashion Journal is unveiling Issue 5 with a launch party that includes screenings of short fashion films. Wear your shorts to watch shorts! Issue 5 and any back issues you may have missed will be on sale.
When: Thurs. November 1st
What: 8pm cocktails, 9pm screening
Where: Ukula, 492 College St. West, Toronto

For more information on Worn, or to order issues and one of their cool t-shirts, check out and contact Serah via email here:

CRAFT SHOW: Harvest of Treasures Arts and Crafts Show

The folks at North Park Secondary School are hosting their 15th annual Harvest of Treasures Arts & Crafts Show. There will be up to 120 vendors showcasing their handmade treasures.

Admission to the Indoor Show is pocketbook-friendly at only $2.00 (leaving you extra bucks to do some holiday shopping!). Kids are admitted for free!

This event has been added to the Toronto Craft Alert Event Calendar. Google Calendar users can add this event to thier own calendar by clicking HERE.


A tip for crafty moms from TCA reader Flora:

Hi there,

Just wanted to drop you guys a note and let you know about an online shop for crafty mommas.

It's called and it's a consignment shop for moms who make things. There's everything from cards,jewellery, knit wear, baby items, games, etc. It's run by Toronto momma, Sara Purves.

I started showcasing my line of hand knit kids accessories and toys with Sara this summer and it's been great working with her. Your other members might find this useful too.

cheers,Flora Cheung
FlowerPot Designs


CRAFTY BIZ: anihan - launch of melissa clemente designs

Anihan[a-nee-han] noun, Tagalog/Filipino:harvest; the result or consequence of any act, process, or event. the Fall/Winter 2007 Line launch for Melissa Clemente Designs.

Anihan (Tagalog for harvest) celebrates the launch of the Melissa Clemente Designs Fall Winter 2007 line. Her jewelry usesextraordinary applications, giving each piece a distinct feel that rises above traditional accessory considerations. Anihan is an interpretation of Filipino Folk dance costuming. These have been inspired by traditional art forms from the mountain regions of the Philippines. It is a meditation on festive dance, hunting rituals, harvest ceremonies and community.

To experience Anihan, live through the magic and highly-charged spiritual energy created in this festival. This celebration also thebrings together selected artists, families, friends, those who inspire and those who believe. Now is the time and season for such a gathering.

Date: Friday November 16th 2007
Place: Distrikt Nite Club
134 Peter Street, Toronto Ontario
Doors @ 7pm. Show @ 9pm.
Advance tickets $15. Tickets at the door $20
Information line: 647.886.0081

Click here to enlarge

GET SCHOOLED: new paper/print workshops at KOZO

Workshops at KOZO Studio/Gallery
257 Broadview Ave., Toronto, ON

Thurs. Oct. 25, 5:30 - 8:30 pm.
Bring your book projects to work on, supplies, knowledge, wit and enthusiasm.
There will be communal pot of PVA and tea on the go for everyone! Please bring a cup with you for tea!
We host this free event on the last Thursday of each month so that book loving people can get together.
Call Akemi at 416-214-1882 to reserve a spot around the tables!
FREE! (This is not a workshop. It's a chance to mess up someone else's space, use some of my tools and chat)


Progressions in Paper
Sat. Oct. 27, Nov, 3, 10, 17 from 1 - 4 pm

In this group of workshops we will explore the world of paper and methods of decorating them. Participants will create beautifully decorted papers using the following techniques; orizome (Japanese dip dying), momigami (Japanese wrinkled paper), relief, washes, glazes, and paste. The resulting papers are unique and perfect for scrapbook projects, book arts, cards, collage and so much more! Four days of playing with paper!
Cost $72.08 plus $15.00 supply fee


Intro. to Letterpress
Sun. Nov. 18 from 12:30 to 5:30 pm
Learn the basics of printing on a flatbed press with Akemi Nishidera at her studio.
The Vandercook press is one of the most popular presses for letterpress printers and the little Showcard is perfect for small editions, gift tags, and quick prints. In this introduction class participants will learn to print from a combination of wood type, metal type, and metal cuts.
Fee $ 50.88 plus supply fee of $10.00.


Letterpress 1
Dec. 9 & 15 from 10 am to 4 pm

In this intensive two day workshop participants will learn how to lock up a form and
registration in order to print in two or more colours. Participants will create an edition of their own unique letterpress printed Broadsides
Participants should have 'Letterpress Printing Intro.' or have discussed their previous experience with the instructor.
Workshop price for the 2 day workshop is $ $
$153.70 plus a $15.00 supply fee.


Sunday Nov. 25 from 10 am - 5 pm
Chigiri-e is a Japanese art form that uses washi paper to create a 'painting'. Washi (known as rice paper) of varying colours, weights and textures are torn in small pieces to create an image that looks very much like a watercolour painting! Participants will learn about washi and why only it can be used, create their own 'painting' and frame it in a traditional Japanese style.
Cost $ 56.18 plus $15.00 supply fee.

CRAFTY BIZ: "Love, Me" Boutique in Halifax

Are you looking for a place to sell your handmade goods, perhaps on the east coast?

LOVE, ME boutique is a new shop located in Halifax whose intent it is to sell only handmade, unique and small-run Canadian items and. Why not bring your products national exposure and sell your stuff in the Maritimes? For more information, contact Chara at "Love, Me" at: and check out her blog at

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

CRAFT SHOW: the motherlode of craft fair lists for 2007

Check out the amazing job Mary of Indie Collective did on converting our Motherlode Craft Fair List to a proper calendar! Note that you can view this as a list by clicking on the "Agenda" tab. Also, if you are a google calendar user, you can add these dates to your calendar by clicking on the button on the bottom (fancy!).

If you have any other local craft shows or fairs, please email your tips to us at More information and local show dates will be added as they become available!

CRAFTY HAPPENING: fall 2007 creativ festival

Creativ Festival Fall 07

Sorry to be so late in posting about this...I seem to have a blind spot memory issue with this show (though I mean to go every year)! Here's a little blurb from the Creativ folks to give you a taste of what to expect:

From sewing, beading, quilting and scrap-booking to knitting, stitching and more, the
Creativ Festival is the ultimate interactive experience. Whether you're experienced or never crafted before, discover, learn, try and buy all you need to craft-it yourself. From Swarovski® jewelry making to embellishing, scrapbooking to do-it-yourself decorating, you can learn to knit, test drive the latest sewing and embroidery machines, or take a quilting lesson. There's hundreds of exhibits, demos, activities and more.

See the NEW green fibre and contemporary art quilt exhibits.
Explore the knitters market, bead boutique and fashion district.
Pick up needlework and cardmaking tips from industry experts.
Buy all the supplies you need for your next project.
Pick up tips from do-it-yourself celebs & industry experts.

For the full low down, see the
Show Guide PDF.

5 days of classes starts this Wednesday October 24th. See the schedule
Also, there are a number of crafty presentations. Details

And don't forget...admission is free to those who bring newly knit (hand-knit) sweater or blanket for donation to the
Warm Hands Network (who will be at booth #909). See TCA post about this project here.

2007 Fall Creativ Festival
WHERE: Metro Toronto Convention Centre, South Building
WHEN: Friday October 26- Sunday October 28 [Conference & Classes begin Wednesday October 24]
TIME: Friday 10am-8pm; Saturday 10am-6pm; Sunday 10am-5pm
COST: See registration info

Monday, October 22, 2007

SUPPLY YOUR HABIT: crafty scavenger returns!

Craft Briefcase full of beads - $50
scavenger was getting a little discouraged with the new toronto craigslist section for arts & crafts, as many craft-related posts were showing up throughout the online classifieds. so she decided to round up some crafty used items from the other sections:
  • sewing lessons - in exchange for your choice of: guitar lessons, website and graphic design services, a piece of furniture or a lamp out of my antique or mid century modern collection, furniture restoration services, a puppet show.
  • clean out your craft room and help out some local students by donating your sewing supplies and materials

encourage swapping, re-using and thrifting by posting your craft-related items and buying from the craigslist arts & crafts section.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

CRAFTY BIZ: monster factory studio sale

monster factory

our friends at monster factory are having a studio sale Saturday October 20th and Sunday October 21st, 12-4 pm.
go and pick up some of your favourite monster characters and chat with the monster factory crew. (i wonder if they still have some of those wicked t-shirts...?)

Friday, October 19, 2007

CRAFT SHOW: crafty television

i happened to catch the last few minutes of a new HGTV show she's crafty this week, and i was impressed! on the episode i caught, host Wendy Russell (of the vancouver craft mafia) re-vamps a yard sale find into a cute new chair with some paint and an old t-shirt. much to my roomate's chagrin, i've been collecting old chairs to refinish but haven't yet gotten around to it. with a bit of inspiration from ms. Russell, i may just get down to business and turn the old chairs into fabulous new pieces.

the hgtv canada website states that crafts aren't just for grannies anymore (duh!) and that their show demonstrates that crafting can be fun and easy. well, we all know that crafting can be fun, and with the magic of television it sure looks easy. so if you're looking for some inspiration or you just want to see what it's about, tune in to hgtv canada on monday nights at 8.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

FROM THE DESK OF TCA: post master/mistress sought



Well well,

Things are getting pretty busy around here as you may have noticed, with more and more of you submitting listings and contacting the TCA with your questions & ideas. This is a great, great thing. But especially with the craft fair season upon us (and all kinds of fun craft collaborations in the works), it is getting a little tough to manage the posting on my own.

So I am looking for someone(s) who is interesting in joining the TCA crew as a master/mistress of posting. This would involve receiving some listings, communicating with people if something is missing, loading images, and then posting all to Blogger. If you are not familiar with blog technology, that's no problem, it's pretty simple stuff and I'd be happy to show you the ropes.

Anyhow, if anyone is interested, please email me at

Pretty please & thanks,

VOLUNTEER:streetknit needs knitters for city of craft

Knit house image from Knitting Site.

OMG, I am really excited about an intallation that
StreetKnit will be bringing to City of Craft: a knit house.

Please read their call for volunteers, for this architectural venture as well as for their booth.

1.) Volunteers to woman/or man the booth of both the knitty and anti-poverty ilk (if you are together in one package, all the merrier) to help us spend the day there. I believe both myself and founder Sadie Lewis will also be in attendance. We will have information on hand about streetknit, homeless in Toronto, and knitting, so you won't be, you know, up a yarn river without any needles. If this is of interest, please email Sadie at

2.) Volunteers to help with an installation. One thing we keep reiterating is that we can't "knit shelter." Well, at City of Craft, we aim to try. If you want to help us knit our house, please let me know. Exceptional knit architects will be welcomed with open arms and a cup of cocoa! If this is of interest, please email Ryan at

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

CRAFT SHOW: mom2mom toronto's 1st green holiday show

Click here to enlarge

Local alpaca farmers eugenix tipped me off (and sent along a coupon - see below) to this green concept holiday show where they will be vending.

Read on for the lowdown, and visit the site for details on show features like onsite babysitting and other handy stuff.

MOM2MOM TORONTO'S 1st Green Holiday Show

Committed to changing the way that moms make consumer choices for their families, a grassroots team of breastfeeding and baby-wearing moms brings everyone together in a Toronto-first: an all-day holiday shopping show and community celebration with a focus on local, ethical and ecologically conscious consumer choices.

Moms can feel good while doing all their holiday shopping under one roof from over 70 booths showcasing various local, ethical, eco-friendly, organic, holistic and original products and services, including booths with the world’s best selection of environmentally-brilliant products and live information and inspiring sessions by Borden Communications President, eco-advocate and mother of all things fabulously green, Lisa Borden. Live music and entertainment, live demonstrations, including an interactive presentation from nutrition guru and healthy caterer, Real Food for Real Kids, will make holiday shopping a fun learning experience at the Show.

When: Saturday, November 3rd 2007 (9:00am to 4:00pm)
Where: CNIB Centre, 1929 Bayview Avenue (just north of Eglinton Avenue), Toronto
Admission: $5 per adult, in support of Jesse’s Foundation for Music and Dance Therapy
Pre-registration and VIP Card purchases:


CRAFTY BIZ: snoflake and dagg & stacey trunk sale at n-r & co.

Snoflake/Dagg and Stacey Autumn Trunk Sale
@ nathalie-roze & co.

WHEN: Thursday October 18th, 6pm - 9:30pm
WHERE: 1015 Queen St. East (at Pape), Leslieville
Free parking on Queen as well as Pape after 6pm, streetcar stop right on the doorstep, bike rack directly in front of the boutique

Questions: 416-792-1699 OR

WHAT: A night of indie deals, nibbles, prizes and styling tips from local designers!!

Both of these fab T.O. indie clothing lines will showcase their current collections - plus the designers will be bringing in goodies from past seasons, the odd one-off and a few cool surprises.
All 2007 fall/winter stock (from Snoflake + D&S) will be 20% off for this night only.
Other items from both labels will be reduced by up to 70% - plus crazy-cheap scores in the sale baskets (starting at just $20).

Debbie Sutton (Snoflake), Karen Dagg and Stacey Paterson (of D&S) will be on hand to help customers choose the pieces that suit them best.
Expect discounts, nibbles and cocktails, plus a raffle for one of three mini-shopping sprees.
And, the first 10 guests will receive a special goody bag.
SORRY - NO EARLY-BIRDS, please. No holds or discounts prior to the sale's start time of 6pm.



nathalie-roze & co.
1015 Queen St. East @ Pape, Leslieville
Tues. to Thurs. 11-6, Friday 11-7, Saturday 11-6, Sun. 12-5

Sunday, October 14, 2007

CRAFTY BIZ: handy seminars at c1 artspace


Sandra at C1 artspace clued me into a great seminar series that's coming up soon with art consultant Arnold Wytenburg.

It's called The Business of Being an Artist:

This seminar series provides insights, guidelines, and tools for launching, growing, and maintaining a successful career as a professional artist. The sessions in this series are designed to appeal equally to both new and experienced artists alike. (Maximum 12 participants per workshop.)

Session 1: Business for Artists 101
Session 2: Presenting & Promoting Your Art
Session 3: Communicating to the Market
Session 4: Leveraging Your Strengths

(See the website for descriptions of each seminar)

They can be taken all together as a package, or individually as well. Here’s the schedule (starts soon!):

Wednesdays, 6:30PM to 9:30PM

Session 1 - Wednesday, October 17
Session 2 - Wednesday, October 24
Session 3 - Wednesday, October 31
Session 4 - Wednesday, November 7

He also offers a two session workshop on writing an artist's statement and biography, taking place on Wednesdays, November 14 & 21 - 6:30PM to 9:30PM (see site for deets on this too).

To register call 416 538-7999 , fax registration form to 416 538-6929 (call ahead for fax) or e-mail


CBC Atrium

The 13th annual CBC Craft Sale

in support of the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation

Canadian Broadcasting Centre (Front/John Streets), Toronto
on Thursday November 29th, 2007 (1-day only)


A note from organizer Julie Tirone:

I'm not too sure if we'll have room in this year's sale for more new vendors but if any of your members would like to send me an email at the above address with all their contact info, I'll keep it on file for next year's sale or if we do have room this year-I'll give them a shout and see if they'd be interested in this year's. I should know how the numbers look by early November.

Friday, October 12, 2007

CRAFTY HAPPENING: special crafty community preview of the workroom


I am very excited about the opening of this new crafty community space on Queen West. This is a great concept hatched by CraftChatter Karyn, who is responding to the need for a (permanent, offline) space for us all to get out of our studios/homes and come together & make stuff, to share tips and ideas, and get access to equipment and hard to find materials (like contemporary Japanese fabrics - yah!).

Here is Karyn's invitation to you all to join her in celebrating the opening of the Workroom. We'd both love to meet you...

welcome to the workroom
tuesday october 16, 2007
7 pm
1340 Queen Street West (just east of Brock)

the workroom is a place to make something.

the workroom:
wants to inspire you with new ideas.
wants to teach you something you didn’t know.
wants you to teach us something we didn’t know.
wants to provide you with equipment and space you don’t have.
wants to introduce you to other people who are making things.
wants to supply you with unique fabrics, notions and supplies.

Join us tuesday night for a special preview for toronto's crafty
community. Enjoy wine, cheese, japanese imported fabrics and friends.
Attendees will receive a 15% discount card for their first purchase.

rsvp -

VENDOR CALL: winter spectacular art show-a-palooza at the burrow

burrow show

The Winter Spectacular Art Show-a-palooza at The Burrow

Call for Artists.

Art show December 6th ,7th, and 8th.

We are opening up our studio space for a unique art show with a twist. Artisans bring in their artwork and we do all the work. We display the artworks, watch over them and sell them to loving customers. Our consignment rate is 35%. We are interested in all forms of handmade work. If interested please send some images or a website link and contact information to

The Burrow

CRAFTY CHAT: hyperbolic crochet at trampoline hall

trimmed pie

The next Trampoline Hall (Toronto’s awesomest “non-expert” lecture series) will include a talk by Toronto Church of Craft minister Leah Buckareff on hyperbolic crochet.

Date: Monday, October 22, 2007
Time: 8:00pm - 11:00pm

At Fort York!

This month's lectures:

Leah Buckareff
on Hyperbolic Crochet

Waylen Miki
on Robotism

Jacob Zimmer
on Diverse Curiosity

curated by Becky Johnson

Tickets will be sold in the "usual" way: You buy them,
with money, at Soundscapes Records.
For more info about tickets see:
For more info abut everything else, see:

CRAFTY BIZ: october newsletter from TANK

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

GET SCHOOLED: upcoming workshops from nanopod

nanotopia mix
Work w/metal + glass!

Learn to FUSE glass, make a sterling silver ring band, create findings for your pieces,
bezel set small glass pieces, make a belt buckle and much more!

Glass Fusing & Jewelry Making Intensive!

Saturday November 10th noon to 5pm and Sunday November 11th, 11am to 6pm
5 student max. $275 includes all materials

This is a 2-day intensive workshop that teaches not only how to make beautiful fused glass pieces (tiles, cabochons) or "stones", but also how to mount and display them to their best advantage. It is a fun, hands-on class that begins with glass cutting and ends with the completion of 6 to 10 fused pieces; cabochons for earrings, pendants, and rings. The next day using sterling silver students will choose from their fusings made on Saturday and learn how to 'set' them creating beautiful one-of-a-kind earrings, pendants and rings.
If you are interested in making unique jewelry for sale or gifts, then this is the class for you.
Learn how to cut glass, emboss-it, embed things in it, and fuse-it. Learn about various glass terms such as Frit, Stringer, dichroic glass. Learn how to bezel set your glass pieces, make a ring band for your bezel settings, pendants, cuff links, etc. Resource list of where you can purchase materials, tools, equipment and how to set-up your own studio is included.

Class fee includes all materials: glass, sterling & fine silver, supplies, and firings. Tools are provided. Lunch is included on Sunday!
No Experience Necessary!

Super Guerrilla Ring Band Workshops!

Saturday, October 20th 5 student max per workshop $40 per person, includes sterling silver for one ring.

What makes these workshops so Super?! Well, I'll tell ya. In approximately 90 minutes you will learn the basics of hand fabricating your own jewelry though making a beautiful ring band. You will learn how to size your finger, calculate the length of metal necessary, how to anneal your ring blank using the oxy/propane mini torch, sawing, drilling, filing, stamping, soldering, cleaning, & polishing. And why are they called, "Guerrilla" ring band workshops? Because they are fast paced, and focussed!

Beginning Jewelry

Wednesday evenings starting January 9th - 1st course for 2008 and it is filling fast! 6:30 - 9:30pm $250 ($100 deposit required to hold space)

week #1: First evening: working with copper-safety, drilling, sawing, soldering.
week #2: Making a band ring out of silver (stamp, hammer finish, roller print, etc.)
week #3:working with wax create pieces w/the lost wax technique
week #4: Finishing wax projects, cleaning up castings> cuttlebone casting (finish up models) week #5: bezel settings, tube settings, alternative settings for found objects, clean-up castings week #6: forming & findings (ear wires, pin backs, pendants), married metals, riveting, etching on copper or brass
week #7: make another piece incorporating techniques from the course.
week #8: finish up projects

No experience necessary!
Register online, at the studio or over the phone with Visa, Mastercard or Debit.

>* There is an opening in the October 24th Beginning Jewelry course starting up Wednesday evenings. If you would like to register for this spot please contact Tosca at 647-219-0585

*nanopod: Hybrid Studio
322 Harbord Street
Toronto, ON M6G1H1
647 219 0585

GET SCHOOLED: fall felting classes at the handwork studio

wine cooler
Felt Wine Cooler/Chiller
Wednesday October 24, 2007
Thursday November 1, 2007

$45 per class, includes materials

felt vase
Felt Vase
Thursday October 25, 2007
Wednesday October 31, 2007

$45 per class, includes materials

felt pumkin
Felt Pumpkin
Friday October 26, 2007

$45 per class, includes materials

felt star babies
Felt Star Babies
Friday November 2, 2007

$45 per class, includes materials

The Handwork Studio
401 Richmond St. West, Room 203
& 33 Harbour Square

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

FROM THE DESK OF TCA: coupons coupons coupons


You may have noticed some new fancy action happening on the left sidebar of the blog. We have are very fortunate to have a few TCA sponsors whose generous support is allowing this project to continue to grow. Yay sponsors! Show them some love by checking out their awesome shops, workshops & sites.

We've also added a fun new feature (at the top of the left sidebar) that you are invited to take part in: the TCA Coupon page. I mentioned it a little while ago, but I think seeing it in action gives you a better idea of how it works. With the holiday gift & craft fair season coming up, this could be a great opportunity to highlight your booth, workshop services or online shop with a sweet little deal for TCA readers. Contact us at if you are interested in learning more.

And readers, don't forget to check out the coupons & BUY LOCAL!!! Yeow.

Friday, October 05, 2007

ASK CRAFTY: blank recycled cards, felt squares, dolls eyes, fabric scaps, photo puzzle & box material /source


A nice and plump ask crafty for you all to tackle...please comment on this post with your tips.

x I've looked everywhere for blank, recycled paper greeting cards but can not seem to find them anywhere. I'd prefer to buy them in large quanities if possible. Do you know where I can find some? Thanks. - Jennifer

x I'm in search of a shop that sells felt squares by the square and with a good color selection in Toronto. Any suggestions? I've only see felt by the yard or in packs of assorted colors (Loomis).
Thanks! - Daisy

x I have just started crocheting stuffed animals and I need to find a local store that sells child safe doll eyes - any ideas? - Lindsay

x And here's a few Qs from T.O. craft newcomer Crystal:
*where I can get inexpensive cotton blend fabric scraps (for my first quilt making extravaganza)?
*if anyone knows of a local place where i could get a photograph printed/made into a jigsaw puzzle (i've found a few online sites, but i'm hoping to avoid the eco-impact of shipping, etc.)
*i'm making some art multiples, and previously made my own miniature hand-folded boxes for each multiple, but I'm hoping to outsource this, or find a material that works better for a box than cardstock... thoughts, anyone?

GET SCHOOLED: creativity classes for women

girl can create

"As a workshop leader, Lisa brings a sense of excitement and passion few can match. Her enthusiasm rubs off on the participants, now co-creators, in a world of movement and creativity carefully explored and unleashed in a safe, fun-filled experience. Lisa is both a masterful facilitator and a catalyst for stepping into the unknown. With such warmth and humour, she truly creates a joyous atmosphere in her classes and workshops.”
- Beth Mairs, Director of Wild Woman Expeditions

She Can Create: Creativity Classes for Women

Join us for an experiential woman's creative group that meets once a week to play and create using a variety of different inspirations. Focusing on self-expression and the desire to bring more art to our lives we will use Collage, Storytelling, Movement, Doll making, Beadwork and Journaling to jumpstart our creativity and help create unique pieces of art and find ways how to continue creating after the classes are finished. Lisa will also talk about the overcoming creative blocks, taking steps to complete projects and letting the world know about your work. A sure fire inspiring workshop, register early to avoid disappointment as there is a limited amount of participants.

She Can Create
When: Tuesdays Nights from 6:45 to 9:00
October 16, 23, 30, and November 6th

Where: Somewhere There Studios
340 Dufferin St., Toronto
One Block South of Queen
(entrance off Melbourne Ave))

Price: If registered before October 7th: $130
If registered after October 1st: $150

To register please email Lisa at or call 416-516-4925

Plus special deal for Toronto Craft Alert readers, register and mention TCA and you will receive a complimentary creativity coaching session with Lisa Pijuan-Nomura.

About Lisa: For many years Lisa has helped other artists when times were tough. It seemed to be a natural extensions of her work as an artist and curator. Lisa has studied with many great creative minds including author and creativity expert Eric Maisel, Art Therapist Jacqueline Gautier, dancer Lisa Nelson, singer Ysaye Barnwell, musician Babatunde Olatunji, storyteller Judith Black and many others! With over 15 years of working as a multidisciplinary artist, writer and educator, Lisa is especially passionate about bring art, humour and creativity to lives of women, youth and children.

For more info see

Thursday, October 04, 2007


Does anyone here have a laser? No? ...
Well this new design community will connect you with laser-cutting and buyers, and store your design files:

Ponoko is the world's first personal manufacturing platform. It's the online space for a community of creators and consumers to use a global network of digital manufacturing hardware to co-create, make and trade individualized product ideas on demand.
The marketplace connects creators, consumers, digital manufacturing hardware and service providers to promote, make and trade products on Ponoko and social networking websites.

how ponoko's pieces fit together - click to enlarge

sue's design ideasCheck this out... So if you are like Sue, a crafty gal who had some jewellery ideas. The process works like this, you draw up your creations in Adobe illustrator and save them as an .eps file. You then upload these creations to your account, choose some materials, pay, and wait for the mail. sue's final product

You will receive a flat-packed Ponoko package, from which you can then pop out your laser-cut prototypes to inspect them, and decide on whether to refine your design. You can tweak your design and then go through the process once more until you get something you are ready to sell.

Althought this operation seems small for now, I can see this growing into a really big project, and hopefully they'll add some materials like felt and tyvek to the catalog.

Now Tord Boontje won't be the only one who gets to create and execute designs with laser-precision. Lasers for the masses!
the big idea - click to enlarge

CRAFTY BIZ: the burrow - new art centre and store/gallery


The Burrow Art Centre and Shop
Art StudioShopGallery
located in beautiful Mirvish Village (Toronto).

Our store offers something creative for everyone young and old.
We are delighted to carry a beautiful selection of Japanese Paper Place products, from Katazome-shi papers and covered books to paper balloons and their signature paper potlucks, great for gifts or some crafty adventure.

We have children’s art supplies such as drawing pads, crayons, chalk and watercolour sets.

We pride ourselves in selling an eclectic selection of contemporary fine arts and crafts. Felted artwork, screen printed shirts and prints, jewelry from Aimee Kennedy and ceramics from Jon Partridge Pottery as well as cute, colourful brooches, bags and plush shrubbies from Little Odd Forest. 416 532 1777

EXHIBITION: OBJECToronto contemporary craft expo

Click here to enlarge flyer

This looks incredible....

Exceptional Contemporary Craft
from Jewellery to Furniture
At Annual Contemporary Craft + Design Expo

OBJECToronto, Toronto's annual art exposition of contemporary craft + design will take place October 19-21, 2007 at the Gladstone Hotel and Queen Street West Galleries. The OBJECToronto opening reception will be held 6-9pm on Friday October 19, at the Gladstone Hotel. OBJECToronto details and images are online at

The work of top award-winning Canadian artists, including Steven Heinemann, Kai Chan and others, will be seen along-side rising stars in the fine craft world. In all, more than 50 Canadian artists with international reputations will exhibit their functional and non-functional contemporary craft including sculpture, glass, ceramics, jewellery, furniture, and textiles. The work features stunning craftsmanship, rampant independent-mindedness, and can range from conceptually humorous to exquisitely fine.

The OBJECToronto exhibition and sale at the Gladstone Hotel will feature artists Ying-Yueh Chuang, Brad Copping, Marina Dempster, Domestic Collective, Jerry Drozdowsky, Stefan Duerst, Ken Gangbar, Steven Heinemann, Chung-Im Kim, Graeme Marrs, Shanna Miller, Ken Nicol, Susie Osler, Susan Rankin, and Clare Scott-Taggart. Galleries participating in the rooms of the Gladstone include Harbinger Gallery, McClure & Egan Contemporary Jewellery and Objects, and Galerie Noel Guyomarc’h from Montreal, QC.

OBJECToronto participants represent many of the latest developments in contemporary craft. Newest in the arena, Paul McClure and Melanie Egan are officially launching their new gallery, McClure & Egan Contemporary Jewellery and Objects, at OBJECToronto. Domestic Collective, six Canadian craftspeople questioning past and current ideas of domesticity, mounted their first exhibition in May of this year. The David Kaye Gallery and the Ontario Crafts Council Gallery both opened on Queen Street West just over a year ago. These artists and galleries represent the new, the contemporary, and the latest developments in craft in Toronto.

The OBJECToronto main expo is at the Gladstone Hotel (1214 Queen St. W.), with satellite galleries in the Queen West gallery district. The OBJECToronto exhibition at the Gladstone Hotel will be open to the public Friday 5-9pm, Saturday 11am-6pm, and Sunday 11am-5pm. Admission is $5 (including a catalogue) for the Gladstone Hotel exhibition, and free of charge at participating galleries.

In addition to the Gladstone Hotel, OBJECToronto satellite galleries Include:
David Kaye Gallery: 1092 Queen Street West,
Material Matters Gallery: 215 Spadina Avenue,
Ontario Crafts Council Gallery: 990 Queen Street West,
*new* Gallery: 906 Queen St. West,
XEXE Gallery: 624 Richmond St. W.,

Details about these galleries and the artists they will be presenting for OBJECToronto are at

OBJECToronto is produced by the OBJECToronto Collective, led by Toronto craft visionaries Paul McClure, Vivienne Jones and Melanie Egan. Each member has extensive experience in the Canadian craft and design community as artists, designers, curators, administrators and educators. The mission of the collective is to present OBJECToronto annually and establish the exhibition as a premiere event for Torontonians to access the highest caliber of Canadian artist-made objects.

OBJECToronto acknowledges the generous support of the Ontario Arts Council and the Toronto Arts Council.