Wednesday, January 31, 2007

poppy picks etsy gems

Find Etsy a little overwhelming to sort through? Vancouver-based blogger Jan of poppy talk (highligted in a recent post re: her guest blogger stint on Design*Sponge) is here to help. She's just introduced a feature on her blog where each day (Mon-Fri) she'll post about a new Etsy find.

Each pick will be archived in the "Etsy Pick of the Day" gallery permanently listed on the sidebar. This is not only a great opportunity for shoppers, but also for etsy sellers to get their stuff seen (a couple of the pieces she's posted about this week have sold out). If you've got an Etsy store and think your stuff jives with the poppy talk aesthetic, give Jan a shout at Check out her latest pick below - a love tree card set by tamar.

ove tree card set by tamar (via poppy talk)

Sunday, January 28, 2007

your perfect crafty date (advice, please.)

It's easy enough to find out what's happening out there in Toronto, but another story entirely to actually leave your home and partake in what the city has to offer. It's occurred to me that it's been far too long since I've taken myself on an 'Artist Date' (Artist's Way readers will relate!) - and so I'm setting aside next weekend to doing just that - poking around town and indulging in some quality sensory & cerebral stimulation.

The specific agenda has yet to be set, so I'm turning to you, dear readers, to advise - and maybe even inspire each other to brave the cold & buck the winter lazies in the name of creative rejuvenation.

What would your perfect crafty weekend in the city entail? A crouching marathon in a favourite artbook store? Attending an artist lecture and discussing it with a pal over tea? A trek outside of T.O. to an out of town gallery to see a particular show? A heavy petting session in the aisles of a favourite yarn store? Attending a day long workshop to pick up a new skill? Spending hours in your favourite paper shop and taking home a scrap of your favourite piece?

Whatever it may be, please do let us know, and check back to see what others have to share...

find love in thornhill

Received a button making invite from the ladies of craftyCOUTURE - a Thornhill operation run by two best buds who teach DIY projects in fashion art and design:


(click invite to enlarge)

Friday, January 26, 2007

time to digest

Yowzaaz. Lots to catch up on (pesky day job!) so a digest I shall do....

1. Prelude – OCAD Material Arts and Design Show
2. HUSTLE ALERT for designers – Platinum TV
3. First Thursdays – free galleries open late
4. Prime Gallery call for contemporary jewellery submissions
5. Creative design classes at Harbourfront Centre

1. Prelude – OCAD Material Arts and Design Show

Allison from Papersnake Jewellery invites us to check out "Prelude" an exhibition put on by herself and her OCAD peers in Material Art and Design:

Come out and get a sneak peak at ceramic, fibre, and jewellery thesis work!

The show runs from January 31 - February 18th.
At X-Space Gallery which is now located at 58 Ossington

Help support our Thesis by coming to the Opening night.
The Party will be February 2nd from 8-11pm, and it only cost five dollars!
There will be awesome tunes, cheap drinks and even a selection of hand-made goodies for sale!

2. HUSTLE ALERT for designers – Platinum TV

A helpful TCA reader contacted me with a bummer story of a seemingly exciting opportunity to gain exposure for her craft business turning out to be a potential scam/ to have major strings attached. She thought some of you might benefit from her experience – if not to avoid potentially losing money, at least to avoid having your time wasted. Read on for the scoop (text of her email changed a bit to protect anonymity)….

I was contacted yesterday morning by a woman who said they'd like to feature my company on a tv show called "Great Taste". The production company is called Platimun TV ( sort of legit right?

The woman set up a phone call with me and the creative director of the show... [My partner] and I both figured they'd just want us to offer up some accessories to be worn by a tv host or the like. instead, they pitch that they want to feature us in a 7 minute spot on "Great Taste" that apparently airs all over the U.S....and after an intense 45min phone call with said crative director, at the very end she mentions that all we have to pay is a US$19,500 "licensing fee", to prove to her that we are serious and commited to the project.

Sceptic that i am, I bought myself some time with her by saying I need to talk it over with my business partner. She promises to call him the next morning and reminded me several times that "This is a great opportunity! Companies from this segment make an upward amount of a quater million dollars revenue after airing. and don't forget your company is just up for consideration (lucky me) and might not even get the segment as there are many other companies up for the spot."

After getting off the phone, i looked up the company further on the web:
wowsers..crazy right?

What a waste of time! I was so excited...i thought we were going to see Joan Rivers or someone wearing [some of my gear]!

I can't really tell if the company is real or not... I'm sure they do produce infomercials and other types of training videos but $19,500 for a 5 minute segment? They're not getting any money from us!

She called [my partner] this morning no less than 3 times when finally he gets on the phone with her, he politely told her no. I hope that's the end of that!

Anyways, I thought they maybe targeting Canadian small business and wanted to give you and your readers a heads up.

3. First Thursdays – free galleries open late

This notice via instant coffee:

A large number of Toronto's commercial art galleries will be open until 8pm on the first Thursday of every month. This initiative is inspired by its success for the past 8 years in Yorkville, as well as the past 6 months in the Distillery District. Our goal is to work together and provide more opportunities for the public to engage in
the increasingly popular activity of looking at and collecting original art.

Please come out and see what we have to offer …

•Angell Gallery • Arta Gallery • Artcore Gallery • Bau-Xi Gallery •Beckett Fine Art •Birch Libralato • Blue Dot Gallery • Diaz Contemporary • Christopher Cutts Gallery • Clint Roenisch Gallery • Corkin Shopland Gallery •Drabinsky Gallery •Edward Day Gallery • Feheley Fine Arts • Gallery Gevik •Gallery Moos • Gallery One •
Gibsone Jessop Gallery • Hollander York Gallery • Ingram Gallery • Jessica Bradley Art + Projects • Katherine Mulherin Contemporary Art Projects •Kinsman Robinson Galleries • Loch Gallery •Lonsdale Gallery •Maslak McLeod Gallery •Monte Clark Gallery • Nikola Rukaj Gallery • Odon Wagner Gallery • Olga Korper Gallery • Pari Nadimi Gallery •Paul Petro Contemporary Art • Peak Gallery • Prime Gallery • Roberts Gallery • Sandra Ainsley Gallery •Stephen Bulger Gallery • Susan Hobbs Gallery • Thompson Landry Gallery • Wynick/Tuck Gallery • Xexe Gallery •

and growing

as usual, admission is free

for more information please contact:
Andrea Carson @ 416 460 3818 or
Stephen Bulger @ 416 504 0705 or
Susan Hobbs @ 416 504 3699 or
or the individual participants

3. Prime Gallery call for contemporary jewellery submissions

Also from instant coffee:

Prime Gallery is now accepting submissions for review from Canadian jewellers. Prime's mandate is to showcase both traditional and contemporary jewellery for our established clientele. Artists currently represented include Holly Tupper Beinhorn, Andree Wejsmann, Beth Godfrey, Mimi Shulman, Sarah Troper, Andrea Roberts, and Paul

Please send a maximum of three jpegs and a link to applicable websites, if any to We thank all artists who submit, but only those accepted for inclusion in our collection willbe contacted. Prime Gallery has been representing Canadian artists in Toronto for 28 years.

5. Creative esign classes at Harbourfront Centre

Thought these two Creative Design courses might be of interest to some of you. Check out their Learning for Living site for the full roster of courses.

Textile Transfer with Lynne Heller
Weekend Workshop, Sat Mar 24 (
10am-2pm), and Sun Mar 25 (1pm-3pm)

Explore, play, talk and make- investigate the use of repetition and pattern as powerful tools of visual presentation in textile art. Make samples of floor cloths using canvas, paint, and transferred imagery. Discover the many techniques and materials for creating beautiful works of art for your home.

Lynne Heller is a Canadian artist and designer working in a variety of disciplines.
$100 (include materials)

Drawing for Fashion Design
6 Thursdays, Mar 1-Apr 5

Look out Project Runway! This course will give you the tools you need to create sketches for fashion design and teach you how to use a variety of materials to put together a presentation board and press kit for your portfolio.

Instructor Sally Glanville has taught Fashion Drawing for 8 years in both the US and Toronto.

$100 (supplies included)

Monday, January 22, 2007

etsymetal street team sale


The EtsyMetal Street Team is having a sale!!

This is the perfect time to buy a gift for yourself or your valentine!

From 8am, US EST on Monday, January 22nd to midnight Friday, January 26th (2007)
* Up to 15% discount – see individual participating stores for details

PARTICIPATING MEMBERS {includes Canadian/Torontonians}:

Ahna –
BCYR Jewelry -
C Baran –
Discomedusa –
Down to the Wire Designs –
ES designs –
Experimetal –
Honeybee –
Howlin Doggie–
Kathryn Riechert –
Lunasa Designs –
Mimosa –
My Little Store –
Nina Designs –
Nina Dinoff –
Nanopod –
North Star Jewelry –
NY Hedy –
Powder Mill Studio –
Precious Pups –
Rachael Sudlow –
Ruby Girl –
Simone Walsh –
Siren Jewels –
Wildflower Designs –

To learn more about what the EtsyMetal Street Team and it’s members represent, please visit our team profile:

[Wondering about Etsy or Street Teams?]

Sunday, January 21, 2007

cute store alert: wildhagen

O.k. I'll admit to being a little bit out of the store loop - both Now and The Globe profiled Wildhagen haberdashery back in November. But I'm betting some of you are like me and had no idea that this little gem existed.

Tucked away above Mokuba ribbon shop at 575 Queen St. West (2nd floor), Wildhagen's second location (the other one being in the Case Goods Warehouse in the Distillery) glows with woodsy warmth while still maintaining a decidedly modern sensibility. The hats are made from a variety of materials, though mainly wool felt and knitted wool. The shop also carries some wild loopy fabric scarves by Movement, as well as the loveliest ceramic jewellery by Denmark's
Anne Black.

Hours: Tuesday, Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday noon

wildhagen imgs
Images from

Blogger tsiaware has done great job of describing another recent Queen West addition, Americo Originals - where your mind will be blown by the truly unique selection of gorgeously coloured and textured yarns and trims from Argentina. Check it out here.

FERAL CHILDE presents canadian alphabet

Received a fashion show headsup from visiting NYC designers FERAL CHILDE, who tell me that they make clothes with a definite crafty touch and would love to form a bridge between Toronto & NYC crafty communities while they are here. To give you a sense of their steez, check out their website and know that they sell their wares in great places like Sodafine and Cinders Gallery in Brooklyn. Here's the scoop on their show:

01_holeyotosis feral childe
Holeyotosis Dress with Dingo Belt and Leggins.
Image from

At The Drake Hotel
January 23, 2007, Drake Underground. 9pm , $5

Feral Childe present the premiere of their Fall/Winter 2007 collection "Canadian Alphabet" at the Drake Hotel with special musical guest Taigaa! and videos by New York artists curated by Christina Vassallo.

Feral Childe are Alice Wu and Moriah Carleson, two designers from New York City , who are currently in residence at the Drake Hotel. Their collection "Canadian Alphabet," is inspired by the cultural and vernacular characteristics of Toronto and surrounding environs. Canadian Alphabet will feature textile prints made from travel sketches produced during the residency; the resulting garments are both wearable and fantastical documentation of the people, places, and things encountered on Feral Childe's Canadian adventures. The designs created at the Drake will be the basis of their Fall/Winter 2007 collection which debuts at the Drake Hotel and then travels to New York City for the forthcoming Fashion Week in 2007.

The night opens with a short video program by Drake Curator in Residence Christina Vassallo, featuring work by New York video artists. Brooklyn based band Taigaa! will accompany the runway show and round out the evening.

The Drake Hotel and Feral Childe thank Elmer Olsen Model Management, Designer Fabrics, MacFAB Fabrics and Peach Berserk for sponsoring The Canadian Alphabet residency and runway show.
D(["mb","and fantastical documentation of the people, places, and things
encountered on Feral Childe\'s Canadian adventures. The designs created
at the Drake will be the basis of their Fall/Winter 2007 collection
which debuts at the Drake Hotel and then travels to New York City for
the forthcoming Fashion Week in 2007.

The night opens with a short video program by Drake Curator in
Residence Christina Vassallo, featuring work by New York video artists.
Brooklyn based band Taigaa! will accompany the runway show and round
out the evening.

Taigaa!\'s music is as wild and unconventional as the name Taiga
(Russian word meaning forest and standing for the largest biome in the
world) suggests. The sounds created take you away to a far off land
near the top of the world where heavy drums resonate for miles,
melancholy violin melodies break the snowy silence, and dark and marshy
terrain of operatic vocals mesmerize you.

The Drake Hotel and Feral Childe thankElmer Olsen Model Management,
Designer Fabrics, MacFAB Fabrics and Peach Berserk for sponsoring The
Canadian Alphabet residency and runway show.

sweethearts craft fair at good catch


(vendor not included on the flyer: Kim Kutner)

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

bloody cold = time to street-knit

Through several degrees of crafty separation this made it into my inbox. Knitters take note!

Hello List-serve, I have kind of become media person for a little event called street-knit. It goes like this. Was in Winnipeg over holidays. Got along royally with nice lady Gladys who is 87 and knits for the street-kids. She was watching TV this one day. About street kids. It depressed her. So she started knitting herself up a terrible storm, wrapping up disinherited Winnipeg in one big loving scarf with matching mitts and toque.

Clever me notes how for Toronto knitting has become a verifiable subculture in recent years. So I'm like if people are doing this for fun and sociability anyhoo, maybe they'd want to drop off a couple hats, maybe one sweater and more than a dozen scarves to a shelter. Anyhoo. in researching this I piqued the attention of at least one city councilor, two shelters in our beleaguered west end, several knitters, and eventually came into contact with Sadie Lewis who recently started the program street-knit in the East End.

Have you been implicated in knitting? Know anyone who has?

Well, it's like the first day of winter out there and if you would like to knit an extra scarf, maybe some toques with wild or somber colours, mitts, even a sweater and would like to see it reach those (still!) without home despite being in our very home-filled Toronto, you can drop it off at local yarn-knit shops Knit-O-Matic (1378 Bathurst St.), The Naked Sheep (2144 A Queen St. E.) and The Knit Cafe (1050 Queen W.). Sadie and I will then make sure it gets distributed to those who need it.

Granted, this falls far shy of actually housing people but maybe next year I'll find a way to knit houses before winter comes!

Anyhow, concomitant to this, and because I'm me, I will be following this up with a little media campaign. So you might hear about us again. Anyhow, please forward this to your wool-minded friends and relations and rivals. And if you had any ideas to help make this a better campaign (you wanted to have your own knitting event to bring in some goods, etc.) gosh, well, let me know! Here or Also if you are knitter interested in helping to maintain a streetknit blog, that would be grand.

Despite what you might have heard, streetkint is now proceeding into the winter and all through next year.I thank you for your kindness in advance.

Ryan Kamstra

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

on the table

this february fall in Y all over again with Canadian craft. the re-vamped gardiner museum is presenting On the Table: 100 years of Functional Ceramics in Canada, a compilation works from more than 100 Canadian ceramists and 20 manufacturers. (i'm not sure100 years of Functional Ceramics in Canada who made the canoe plate - but it looks like Laura McKibbon's work) so mark your calendars, this exhibit runs from february 15th to april 22.

“On The Table shows how our ceramics have become true to Canadian society and therefore part of a universal idea of art.” - John Ralston Saul

Saturday, January 13, 2007

canadian design on design*sponge

Check it out - Vancouver craft blogger Jan of Poppy talk is the current guest blogger on the design blog juggernaut design*sponge. She's staying true to her Canuck roots and featuring a bunch of Canadian designers, including our very own bookhou design and coe & waito (the latter as part of a profile on Dundas St. W boutique MADE). Way to promote local talent Jan!

coe & waito acorns

bookhou poms
bookhou tea towel

Friday, January 12, 2007

crafty sample books at the monkey's paw

The Monkey's Paw, a Dundas St. West shop filled with vintage books and emphemera, has released a microcatalogue of sample books available in their shop. I thought I'd post it here since this first catalogue is decidedly crafty in character, featuring fabric, yarn and paper swatches, etc. Go by soon to check them out before they're out the door.

Monkey's Paw Microcatalogue #1: Sample Books

Sample books are intriguing because they're not really books. Though they may contain useful and interesting printed data, their real intent is to display examples of non-book merchandise or materials in booklike form. They're typically hard to find secondhand because they're manufactured in small runs, and distributed only to a specialized (often professional) market. But their practical beauty and tactile aspect make them objects of enduring fascination. Here are a few examples currently in stock.


Doric Publishing Co.,
New York, 1966.
An astonishing oversized fashion magazine intended for the trade: many of the articles are illustrated with actual fabric swatches, in addition to terrific photos and line art. This issue's emphasis is Go-Go culture (Tiger Morse, vinyl, etc.), but it also contains articles on new prints from
Africa and the history of the staid textile house Galey & Lord. Sewn wraps, a bit rubbed, but overall a very good copy, with 85 fabric swatches tipped in.
[note: we have in stock other issues of this publication from various dates throughout the 1960s.]

General Dyestuffs Corporation,
New York, no date [ca. 1930].
Commercial dyes demonstrated on bands of cotton thread wrapped on mounted cards. Each of nine colour families (orange, red, violet, etc.) is represented by a spectrum of ten dyes in three shades; the resulting collection is a subtle rainbow of vintage colour. Blue linen-covered boards, showing a bit of wear, but a well-preserved copy overall.

Plastic Coating Corp.,
Holyoke, Mass., no date [ca. 1950s].
Kivar is an imitation leather typically used in cheap bookbindings. This fold-out brochure contains nearly 200 sample strips of Kivar in various colours, shades, textures, and finishes -- "Cordovan," "Morocco," etc. -- with paper index strips laid on top. The whole package suggests aesthetic deception on an industrial scale, with a faint smell reminiscent of your grandmother's bible.


Andrews-Nelson-Whitehead Paper Corp.,
New York, no date [ca. 1960].
Oblong string-bound book containing 132 samples of the most beautiful Japanese papers you've ever seen. Silk tissues, foils, bizarre naturalistic textures and colours . . . even a "fantasy paper" with an actual butterfly fixed within it. The covers and spine are also decorated with lovely examples of paper, of course. A very good copy.


AdPro/American Newspaper Publishers Association, New York, 1968.

A ringbound collection of newsprint sheets printed with "an exact visual sample of the three AdPro process colors, six blending inks, a mixing white, and seventy-seven assorted color intermixes from the ten basic inks." And you thought HTML was complicated!

Location & Hours
1229 Dundas St. West
Wednesday through Saturday: 11 - 6
noon - 5
[Monday & Tuesday: closed]

gladstone gala tonight: check out the artist rooms, plus!

1st year anniversary (Page 1)

(go here to see full-sized image)

And don't forget about the Other Moments show happening at the gala.

jan & feb workshops at nathalie-roze & co.

Check out the cozy and affordable upocoming workshops at nathalie-roze & co. below. Also note that Nathalie-Roze is looking for workshop instructors: "If you are an artist, crafter or designer who'd be interested in teaching a specific workshop in 2007, please contact Nathalie-Roze with a proposal - at least, a blurb about yourself and what you do. Workshops are intended to be beginner-friendly and accessibly priced too."


Please call 416-792-1699 to register for workshops - all sessions are small (never more than 6 participants) & most fill up quickly.

Jan. 14th & February 11th (Sun.):
Soap-Making with
Amanda Montgomery of simply. by amanda,1pm - 4pm
Learn how to make a batch of your own organic soap, customize scents & textures and leave knowing how to do it all on your own again later. All ingredients are 100% natural and fair-trade.
$45, including all tools & materials - plus tea & a snack
Participants will leave with several bars to enjoy at home or give as gifts.
Jan. 16th & 23rd (Tues. evenings)
Jewellery 101 (Wire & Bead Earrings) from 6 - 8:30pm
An introduction to wire jewellery-making for absolute beginners - learn how to use essential tools as well as basic techniques to create various designs.
$40+GST, including all tools & materials, plus a snack
Participants will leave with a minimum of two pairs each
(age 14+ up)
Instructor: Nathalie-Roze Fischer

Jan. 20th (Sat.),1- 4pm & February 8th (Thurs.), 6 - 9pm
Boiled Wool "Felting" for non-knitters
Participants will be introduced to this easy technique, using store-bought 100% wool sweater fragments. Once shrunken, these bits will be transformed into quirky brooches or appliques. Yarn corking will also be explored as a felting option.
Julie Sinden, designer behind the popular hat & bag label Salt & Pepper Textiles. $45+GST, including all materials as well as tea & a snack.
Jan. 21st (Sun.), 1-4pm & February 7th (Wed.), 6 - 9pm
Sewing 101 (easy tote bags) from 1pm to 4pm
Absolute beginners will learn the very basics of machine sewing - threading, key stitches, making a fool-proof pattern, creating simple appliques & some free-hand embroidery to create a one-of-a-kind tote bag.
No more than 4 per session, so register early!
$45+GST, including snack, materials for appliques & use of machines.
Note: Participants must bring their own fabric, thread & optional extras (ribbon, buttons, etc.) or buy the project kit for $10.
Instructor: Nathalie-Roze Fischer
Jan. 28th (Sun.), 1-4pm
Beg. Boiled Wool “Felting” for Knitters
Intermediate knitters will knit up mini-yardage samples in various fibres, then try this easy shrinking technique to create a “felted” brooch or coin purse. Inspiration sheets will be distributed, samples shown, techniques explained and more complex projects discussed.
$45+GST, including all materials as well as tea & a snack.
Julie Sinden, designer behind the popular hat & bag label Salt & Pepper Textiles.
Natural Hand-dying 1 (warm tones/reds & yellows):
Feb. 4th (Sun) 12noon to 4pm

Natural Hand-dying 2 (cool tones/blues & greens):
Feb. 10th (Sat.) 12noon to


Beginner Cross-Stitching
Easy Crocheted Flowers (appliques & brooches)
Paper Crafts (soft-cover notebooks & cards)
Fabric Jewellery
Intro to Pin/Needle Felting
Beginner Knitting
Sewing 102: Skirt Alert
Hand-Sewing (basic mending)
Hand-Beading & Embroidery
Drop-Spinning (Making Your Own Yarns)
Crafting for Teens
DIY Spa Goodies
Sewing on Paper
Renegade Scrapbooking
T-Shirt Surgery 101
DIY Sachets & Eye-Pillows
Batik 101

Tuesday, January 09, 2007


Welcome to the first installment of Cross Country Craft Checkup, where the TCA checks in on crafty haps in other places in Canada. (See here for more info on the concept). We’ll begin with la belle ville de Montreal, a city dense with creative types living cheaply, keeping odd hours, and making awesome stuff happen. Thanks to Luce, Vanessa, Janick, and Melanie for their suggestions, and Worn Journal for their Montreal listings. Please do leave comments about your own Montreal crushes.


Stores that sell handmade stuff
During a recent visit I was particularly bowled over by the number of stores selling independent designer-y stuff in the Mile-End area – many which are a venue for the store owners’ lines as well as other l
ocal makers. Check ‘em out:

General 54 54 St-Viateur W.
Local 23 23 Bernard St. W.
L’Arterie 176 Bernard West (Also home to Elle Corazon)
Headquarters 1649 rue. Amherst
Folle Guenille 4039 Sainte-Catherine Est
Crazy Lily 6300, rue Saint-Hubert
Lustre 4429 blvd. St-Laurent
Cul-de-Sac 3966, boul. St-Laurent
Le Marche Mtl 24 Des Pins Ave. E
Appartement 51 51 St. Paul Ouest
Galerie Noel Guyomarc'h Bijoux d'Art
137, rue Laurier Ouest
(online store)

indyish logo


Lotsa Mtl. designers are using recycled materials in their work. Guess their green rep is well deserved!

Complex Geometries conceptual handmade clothing and jewellery
Morales clothing design (boutique at 5392 boulevard St-Laurent)
Papaya(Qc. City) clothing and accessories
Valerie Dumaine clothing design
ON&ON recycled clothing and accessories
Oom screenprinted clothing
88 Queen Street clothing design
Bodybag by Jude clothing design
Fairyesque clothing design
Moly Kulte recycled clothing, jewellery & accessories
Myco Anna clothing design
New K. Industry fair trade clothing design
Majolie knitwear for girls and boys
Sonia Levesque plus sized clothing design (boutique: 6303, Saint-Hubert Street)

Posch recycled tees & bag (see the designer's great French and English sustaina
ble design blog here)
Jen Ham sewn bags and patches
Pinpals felt and cross-stitched pins
Jihane sewn bags
Movement knit fabric hats and scarves
Rachel F. recycled fur and leather accessories
Ryoko Wada recycled kimono bags and accessories
Tetu tetu hats and accessories made from recycled materials
Lonely Cowgirls sewn accessories

Nea mixed media
Vanessa Yanow glass, felt, wire & zippers

Zhubao wire, stone & wood

Missy Industry silver
astrik silver and beaded
Rony Design
tulle, feather, and silver collage
Anne Marie Chagnon glass and metal

okzoo recyled plastic jewellery

Other fun stuff
Damed Dollies dolls and screenprinted clothing & accessories
La puce a l’agonie plush toys
Dame Plume stationary (atelier/store at 150, rue Saint-Viateur Ouest)
Ruby Faz magnets and stationary
Lampi Lampa lamps from recycled objects
Bure & Linon textile design for the home
Serigraphie Populaire (Seripop) screenprinted posters

Craft fairs
In a city this crafty there must be more…please share if you know of any.

Puces Pop (during the Pop Montreal festival) December

Indyish insta-boutique
Hot Cakes Craft Fair (formerly known as the Rusty Plum Bazaar)
Roy Street Collective Christmas Emporium

Some truly unique craft supply options in this city. My personal faves are marked with *s.

Oiseau Bleu 4146 rue Sainte-Catherine E ::: general craft supplies
Omer DeSerres: various locations ::: general craft supplies (French version of Loomis)
*Les Brodeuse 5364, boul. Saint-Laurent ::: embroidery supplies and workshops, plus a great little embroidery museum
Au Papier Japonais 24 Fairmont O. ::: Japanese papery - offer workshops in bookbinding, latern making, collage, etc.
Atelier Soleil
371, rue Roy E. ::: bookbinding supplies and workshops
Bure et Linon 1129 Belanger ::: coriedale and silk wools in natural and dyed colours for felting
Knitting stores in Montreal (note particularly *Magasin de Fibres L. B. Inc. (2270 Mt. Royal East) where you can pick out individual fibres and have them spin your custom yarn)
*Rix-rax 801, rue Gilford ::: buttons, trim & other embellishments
Rubans, Boutons 4818, St-Denis ::: ribbons & buttons


The Long Hall 450 Beaumont (also an artist studio space/ community hub)
Roy Street Gallery 111 Roy St. E.
Belgo Building 372 Saint Catherine St W.
Zeke’s Gallery 3955 Saint Laurent
Le Centre des Textiles Contemporains de Montreal/ The Montréal Centre for Contemporary Textile 5800, rue St-Denis, #501


Uncatogorizable but definitely worth a mention:

Projet Mobilivre/Bookmobile Project Travelling airstream trailer with amazing, submission-based zine collection. Montreal & Philly based.
Montreal Church of Craft The first Church of Craft in Canada (co-founded by yours truly).
Worn Fashion Journal Indie mag with alternative take on fashion and design. Profiles local artists and designers as well as covering general fashion & craft related topics. Montreal-based with coverage of Toronto & New York.


Image credits: Top: Vanessa Yanow zipper necklaces, logo, Morales boutique & clothing, Pin Pals felt brooch, Damned dollie, Les Brodeuses logo, Projet Mobilivre/Bookmobile Project.

Saturday, January 06, 2007

call for corks!

If you haven't tossed your holiday booze corks yet or plan to drink some wine in the next little while, Michelle of MaRGie Jewellery asks that you hold on to them for her. She's in the process of opening a jewellery studio (there will be daily classes in metal, glass and beaded jewellery) and would like to spruce up the less-that-lovely washroom in the space by gluing old wine bottle corks to the walls to make it seem a bit homier.

If you live in the city of T.O. (including Scarborough & Etobicoke) and would like to help Michelle out, kindly hang on to the corks you amass between now and January 19th, and she will collect them the week of the 22nd. Contact her here if you have corks to spare.

As an aside, I came across Bag-a-cork, a recycling initiative of the Ontario Girl Guides which aims to prevent corks from ending up in landfill sites by providing cork drop-off locations where they are sorted and recycled by Guides. Something to think about if you are a big wine drinker or work for/own a restaurant/bar...

Friday, January 05, 2007

amazing find: utsuwa-no-yakata

The Pacific Mall in Markham (on the NE corner of Steeles and Kennedy) is known to many as a haven for flashy-trashy-guilty-pleasure shopping for Asian import fashion, electronics, and, er, illicitly reproduced dvds. Recently a friend tipped me off to the Japanese tableware shop on the 2nd floor (where the food courts are located) and man, am I glad he did.

Utsuwa-No-Yakata ('House of Pottery' in Japanese) is filled with gorgeous ceramics and pottery imported from a variety of artisan towns around Japan. You'll find high-end ikebana (flower arrangement) vases and tea sets, and everyday noodle bowls, plates, and little sauce containers at affordable prices. Japanese snacks and lucky kitty dolls and the like are also available here. There are a handful of places around town that sell this kind of stuff, but never have I seen a huge selection in one place. Go now! It's worth the trip to Markham.

utsuwa vase

utsuwa tea cups

utsuwa serving bowl

utsuwa sake set

Images from

thanks, akimbo

Some goodlookin (and conveniently colour-coordinated) stuff on Akimbo today:

other moments

Gladstone Hotel
1214 Queen Street West Toronto ON
2nd + 3rd + 4th Fl Public Spaces

Dec 21, 2006 to Feb 18, 2007
12pm to 5pm daily

During the Gladstone's First Anniversary Gala!
FRI, JAN 12, 2007 7 - 10PM

To celebrate the one-year anniversary of the grand re-opening of the Gladstone Hotel, invited co-curators Katharine Mulherin and Kris Knight (the 'team' at Katharine Mulherin Contemporary / Art Projects - Queen Street West) mount an exhibition by artists they consider to have both great promise and influence. Collaborating as curators offered Katharine and Kris the opportunity to combine their wish lists and create a dialogue between emerging and mid-career sculptors, photographers and artists whose work is primarily on paper. The exhibition will utilize public spaces on all four floors of the historic Gladstone in order to provide the viewer with an engaging tour of the hotel, with exciting treasures around every corner.



Registration is now open for the InterAccess Interactive Art Workshop Series:

InterAccess's Interactive Art Workshop Series provides artists with the tools needed to begin exploring the creative uses of technology. Participants gain a solid technical foundation for realizing their artistic vision. Our workshops demonstrate how a computer can communicate with and integrate visuals, audio and electronics. InterAccess emphasizes production strategies for artworks that take place in real space and real time, including performance, interactive installation, audio, video, and kinetic or robotic sculpture and installation.

Go here for a breakdown of the "Winteractive" workshop series.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

the green catwalk

i just read about this and got a kind of excited! a sustainable fashion show! the green carpet series presents an evening of sustainable style where canadian designers will talk about sustainable choices that work for you - and the earth. canadian celebrity models will take to the runway to showcase local environmentally aware designers - all in support of World Wildflife Fund Canada. the evening will be hosted by Gillian Deacon and George Stroumboulopoulos.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007, 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM
Berkeley Church, 315 Queen St East
Ticket Price: $40 proceeds will be donated to WWF-Canada

Featuring clothing and accessories by:
Frog Pond * Grassroots * Harvey's Original Seatbelt Bag * Linda Lundström * Nathalie-Roze & Co * Oqoqo * Preloved * Susan Harris Design * Twice-Shy * Yogagurl

artscape retail studio available

Artscape Artist Retail Studio for Rent

The Case Goods Warehouse,
Distillery Historic District
55 Mill Street (One block south of Front St. E., between Parliament and Cherry Streets)

There is one retail studio available to rent in the Case Goods Warehouse, located in the Distillery Historic District. Artscape's Artist Retail Studios offer a unique opportunity to enterprising visual artists and craftspeople that enjoy interacting with their customers in their workspace. This studio was designed for artists who would like to sell their work from the space they create it in, offering ground floor visibility at an affordable price in the heart of North America’s largest and best preserved Victorian industrial site and Toronto's most promising new cultural and entertainment development.

This studio is intended for either an individual or collective of artists and is ideal for the production of work and sales and can be used to conduct small workshops. Tenants have 24-hour access to their studio but are also expected to maintain regular business hours for public access, Wednesday to Sunday 11am - 6pm.

  • 631 useable square feet
  • Ground level, private studio
  • Interior doors
  • Southern exposure
  • Display windows within the building
  • Cold water access in studio
  • 24 hour access

The rent is $1215.43 per month, all-inclusive.

To express interest or for more information, please contact Kelly Willson Harvey at or 416.392.1038, extension 21.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

january popfuel workshops

popfuel logo

Popfuel, the Toronto-based membership-supported screenprinting studio, is holding their next two full-day Weekend Workshops on Saturday, January 13th and Sunday, January 14th.

The one day workshops run from 10am to 6pm and cover the entire process of producing your own designs, from initial drawings to finished products such as t-shirts, posters and buttons. The $150 fee includes all materials. Each workshop is limited to only 5 attendees per day, so sign up early as space is limited.

Once you've completed the workshop, you have the option to become a full member - which allows 24 hour access to the studio - for only an additional $145.

Alternatively, if you're an experienced screen printer looking for a professionally equipped studio space, drop us a line and we can arrange an evening workshop that covers the use of the equipment without the hands-on component.

For further details or to sign up, visit our website at: . Or call (416) 820-3025.

Popfuel Screenprinting Studio
444 Dufferin St, Toronto

p.s. To find out more about the Popfuel concept, read their Torontoist interview.

worth the trip to waterloo

Shary Boyle Winter's Tales
Shary Boyle: Golden Cloak, 2005

Oooh, a new show by Shary Boyle will be on at The Canadian Clay & Glass Gallery (25 Caroline Street North) from January 14 - March 25 (plenty of time to hook up a ride to Waterloo). The exhibition, called Aspects & Excess, "offers characters and situations that explore relationships to nature, mortality, youth, identity, gender and disorder...[and] marks the first time the majority of these polymar clay works will be shown."

Aspects & Exces is part of a larger show called Winter's Tales, which includes solo exhibitions by glass artists Stuart Reid and Robert Youds and a group show by the
University of Waterloo Fine Arts students. The opening for Winter's Tales takes place Sunday, January 14 from 2-5pm. Shary Boyle will be giving an Artist talk at 1pm.

p.s. Some of you may have missed the interview I did with Shary last March during her Lace Figures show at the Power Plant. Check it out here.