Archive for the ‘crafts’ Category


October 23, 2008

Live in Columbus?  Like good things?

Hopefully you’ve heard about HighBall then.

If not, here’s the deal:

Next Friday — October 31st, Halloween — from 6:00pm to midnight, High Street is going to be blocked off/closed to traffic from Buttles to Hubbard, in the Short North.

And we’re throwing a masquerade…

Think: Carnivale

Think: Mardi Gras

Think: Halloween

Think: Short North

As Funkadelic put it: free your mind… and your ass will follow.

Admission is FREE (booze is not).

On the north end, you’ll have live music: The Floorwalkers from 6:00 to 7:30; Flypaper (with Anna and the Androids) from 8:00 to 9:30; and Buzzcrush from 10:00 to 12:00.

On the south end, you’ll have DJs Moxy and Sonya, spinning from 6:00 to 9:00 and 9:00 to 12:00, respectively.

Plus a — get this — ginormous T-shaped runway in the middle of High Street (the top of the T backs up to Dr. Mojoe, if you’re trying to picture this; the stem is like 30 ft) for the Costume Couture Fashion Show.

(Now.  Before you even begin to rehash the 35 pages of debate on CU about what exactly ‘fashion’ is and what does Columbus have to do with it anyway, let us acknowledge that it (‘fashion’) is indeed subjective and amorphous and, to most of us, fleeting, but that it does have something to do with, I think, ‘freedom of expression through your wardrobe,’ plus ‘being creative within certain bounds’ and ‘intentionality’ — yes.)

That being said, we’ve got a veritable gaggle of talented designers in Columbus and we’re going to be featuring couture costume designs — plus three or four ready-to-wear looks a piece — from eleven of them right here.

On the catwalk.

Sexy folk like Kelli Martin.  And Terri Stevens.  (Don’t think I even need to mention the show anymore so I won’t.)  And Akira Burgess. And Esther Myong Chung.  To name a few…

And a certain super drag queen — 2008 National Entertainer of the Year, no less — emceeing?

That’s at 8:30.

Plus then costume contests from 9:30 to 12:00 with, I’m led to believe, a couple thousand dollars at stake.

All while legally drinking booze on the street!

Obviously there’s A LOT going on.  Probably I’m forgetting all sorts of stuff (like Dogtober Howloween).  So be sure and check out or the Facebook page or the official Short North blog for the full story.

Any questions?

Here’s your map:

See you then.

[Updated 10/28: street closure is at 6:30pm, not 6:00, though The Floorwalkers do start at 6:00 in the Haiku parking lot.]


Chances are good

October 9, 2008

I’m 95% behind on pretty much everything in my life right now.

Not a complaint, just an observation; it’s good to be busy.

Just need an intern, is all.

Plus 85% of it’s interchangeable parts of a BIG project involving the total integration of my work and personal lives to the point of: It’s Just What I Do Because It Interests Me.

Anywhere, anytime.  Work hours?  What’s that.

Building that bridge.

And following — no, chasing — passion, both mine and others.

Until everything I do (and don’t do) (paid or otherwise) is driven by a single unifying purpose: to help build a local living economy in Columbus.

In other words: making things better.

Paying-gig-wise, without exception, ALL the people I’m working with these days — 100% — are smarter, more creative, and exponentially more interesting than I am.

That’s by design, of course — I don’t have an inferiority complex.

They’re all so just f**king cool.

Case in point: Little Alouette.

Based right here in Columbus, OH.

A true, small-family-biz: Renaissance Mom, Artisan Wood-Working Dad, and two ‘wee ones,’ crafting wooden toys by hand, with love.

Using Ohio Maple whenever possible…

And finishing each product with certified organic seed oil!

In other words: all the savvy moms dig Little Alouette.

(Probably you should, too.)

REALLY feeling this Lil Ellie Roller right now:

Maple Lil Ellie Roller Toy

And this Balance Toy:

Solid Wood Bowler Hat Man Weights and Balance Toy

Of course, I’m biased; it’s impossible for me to be objective, they’re my clients — I believe in what they do.

So if you don’t feel you can trust me, tune into some of the chatter here, here, here, and here.

Plus, you know who else loves them?

Whole Foods — read about that here.

And say you really want to be the cool uncle (or whatever), bundle one of LA’s treasures with this here onsie from Skreened:

Like a wee sartorialist in training.

[Update, 12/12: check out Little Alouette and Skreened on Good Day Columbus with @jdiloretto from a couple weeks back here and here, respectively.]


May 12, 2008

heard a juicy rumor over brunch on sunday at the uptown market that northstar‘s working on a third location over in dublin near the shops at river ridge

speaking of westerville, anybody else been to java central yet? there’s outdoor seating, comfy sofas and chairs inside, an amyd boutique. plus the espresso’s excellent.

all of a sudden there’s a couple really good reasons to head north.

making it better

December 28, 2007

back in november, in his keynote speech at the 2007 futuretrends conference in miami, fl, piers fawkes issued the following challenge:

if there is an economic reason to change the world…

…as a trends analyst, researcher, innovation director or concerned party, it’s your job, should you choose to accept it, to create that change.

your job is to inspire your companies. inspire them:

  • to lead
  • to be good
  • to make things better

right about that same time, 1200 miles away, here in columbus, i was issuing a similar challenge to our agency principal at jda, except with a singularly immodest proposal attached: give me the resources, backing, and budget, and let me create a new agency — from the ground up, on my terms — so we can lead and help shape the future.

he said ‘yes.’

that night, i unpacked the still-germinating idea into a clumsy powerpoint and uploaded it:

jump cut a month-and-a-half forward, and we’re getting ready to meet piers’ challenge with brilliant.

this is about columbus.

this is about passion for the potential for the future.

and, if you’re engaged locally in the commercial application of creativity — a cultural entrepreneur — this is about you.

stay tuned.

handmade 2.0

December 19, 2007

fascinating article in this week’s times sunday magazine about the fruitful mènage between the diy craft scene, web 2.0, and etsy.etsy1.jpg

business. highly unusual.

December 16, 2007

you live in columbus. you’re a crafter. an artist. a designer. you run a creative small business. maybe you’ve got a blog. you’re passionate. you shop local. you create original things from scratch that didn’t before exist; or, you combine old ideas in never-tried-before ways to create something new. status quo? rejected it. at some point you took a look around and said: if nobody else can get it right, i’m just going to do it myself. you embrace failure. you’re independent. you prefer interestingness to not. you ‘get it.’ you’re creatively-engaged. you’re a participant. you’re shaping the future. you want to do well by doing good. you want to give something back. are you brilliant? we think so.

holiday hooch

December 12, 2007

sold!  this cute little number’s on sale from amydsold!

she describes it aptly as being both ‘flattering and functional,” and those are just two of the many great things about amyd’s stylish stuff. otherwise, what’s the point? that, plus the fact that nobody else has anything like it. the scarf i picked up at the north market show never fails to garner mention — and it keeps me warm.

have you taken the handmade pledge yet?


shop talk

November 15, 2007

whollycraft.jpgthe dispatch is still on my desk, unopened — yours, too? — but i have it on good authority that olivia’s featured in this week’s edition of shop talk….

“they’re thankful to have a place that’s an alternative to cheaply made, mass- produced . . . crap.”

true ‘dat!

she makes it. you buy it. look pretty. pt ii

November 14, 2007

amyd’s not vending at tiny canary this weekend, but you can check out her stuff online on her website, in person at wholly craft, or december 1st at the north market craft extravaganza.

or simply be one of the first 100 in the door on saturday and get one of our reusable coffee sleeves she designed and crafted by hand, for free!

here’s a little q & a we did via email: midamyd1.jpg

q: for anybody who hasn’t seen your clothes before, describe the style of your line.

a: my clothes are stand-out enough to get you noticed, but you can still make a stop at your kid’s school and not cause a scene.

q: who’s your muse? where do you get your inspiration?

a: i’m inspired mostly by practical things. meaning, a skirt can’t be see-through or scratchy and everything needs to be comfortable.

q: do you make custom stuff — e.g. can my wife call you up and say: amy, i need a straight skirt in a certain color in such-and-such a size? how does that work?

a: i do quite a bit of custom clothing. how it works for custom stuff is that someone lets me know the kind of thing they want, and what colors they like and what it’s for. (‘hey amy! i need a skirt for work and i’m a librarian, so i need to be able to bend over without showing myself and i don’t want to look like a librarian…’) so then we chat back and forth until i get an idea of what they are like and then i come up with something just for them. it’s not a situation in which someone picks a style and a color, but more as though we are working together to come up with something they will want to wear everyday.

q: do you make men’s clothes?

a: you bet. so far that’s been mainly custom.

q: you’ve got three kids. do you make them cool clothes?

a: sometimes! my son prefers to wear shirts by toothepaste for dinner, mr. pickles, and supastarr (all ohioans!)

q: what’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?

a: f**k it.

q: what does the world need more of? what does the world need less of?

a: good one! i’m only sure the world needs less people worrying about what everyone else is up to.

q: what’s your hope for the future of columbus?

a: i absolutely love living here! my kids love it, too. i hope columbus is able to grow and still retain its flair. i hope rents stay low enough for cool independent businesses to operate.

q: 5 lps that never get very far from your record player:

a: earwig; evil queens; rosehips; the sure things; black swans (i like my rock local!)

q: favorite kind of pie?

a: carrie pie!

q: best cupcakes in town?

a: pattycake vegan bakery

q: reading anything good right now?

a: croq zine. it’s a craft zine mostly about crafty business shiz. i love zines.

q: seen any good films recently?

a: i see everthing on video (sorry, damon!), so the last best thing i saw was garden state and it was great!

q: where do you get your news from?

a: and my teenager.

q: when are you the happiest?

a: i’m happy most of the time. i love it when my husband laughs at me when i’m acting like an idiot.

q: name somebody you admire who leads by example:

a: jill arnett. she’s like a sister to me and a kind of mentor. any success i’ve had in this venture has been a direct result of her influence and advice. olivia bratich. she’s made a lot of stuff happen that wouldn’t otherwise be possible, without wholly craft.

q: name some local crafters we should be paying attention to:

a: locura: she’s making these cool rosaries and has so many creative ideas. creatrix jane: great clothes and accessories. lucky kat: fantastically tailored retro clothes. sweet stella: cool jewelry. umbrella girl: lovely hand-crafted stationery. flamestitch: the best handbags i’ve ever seen. no kidding.

she makes it. you buy it. look pretty. pt i

November 14, 2007

if you live in columbus and are cognitively aware plus have a pulse, you know this is a big weekend coming up.banner_3.jpg

game? what game?

i’m talking about tiny canary.

the diy-inspired, modern arts & crafts market is this saturday and sunday, 10:00 am to 6:00, at junctionview. and if you’re into independent artists and designers plus all kinds of awesomeness that doesn’t suck, we know where you’ll be at 10:00.

(not to say that art and sport are mutually exclusive.)

we’re proud to be co-sponsoring this event — along with columbus underground, wholly craft, i love treefort, done waiting, alive, and couchfire (how’s that for some company!).

and much like with the new principled shop i’m running at jda (just greenlighted last week, still in beta, and so new i’ve only had time to allude to it in a previous post) where our mission is to invest in columbus’ cultural economy by working and partnering exclusively with clients who create products, services, or experiences of social or cultural meaning — give us something original, innovative, or relevant to believe in, and we’ll get behind you — likewise, the new shop doesn’t take sponsorship lightly.

this started with the scoot-a-que gift cards we did earlier this fall. why? because once we get behind something, we don’t half-ass it, and that’s rule #2. and it’s a good rule to go by: don’t get behind something unless you believe in it, because if you don’t truly believe, aren’t passionate, and don’t care, might you be tempted to just phone it in?

i see that happening a lot with event sponsorships. look: anybody can buy an experience and attach their name to an event if you’ve got enough $ these days. no?

but starting back with scoot-a-que and forever moving forward, when we choose to sponsor an event, it’s because we believe in it, and we want to help supply the ingredients that transform that culture into a community. scooters, the diy craft movement, whatever. anything exhibiting independent spirit. the emergence of the individual from the herd. people doing it themselves, on their own terms. saying f**k it.

which is why when we started talking with anne about tiny canary, and she mentioned that the first 100 folks in the door would get goodie bags, and that, as sponsors, we’d get the opportunity to include a promotional item, two things occurred to us (1) here’s a great opportunity to promote some clients and (2) this is a craft show, why not have a local crafter make our promo item?

so we ran what we thought was a genius idea by anne, anne loved it because she’s genius herself, and she was confident that between the crafty folks at couchfire and the crafty cotillion she could find someone to help us out. she went to crafty cotillion meetup at surly girl towards the end of october and threw out the idea to whoever was present.

the very next day we got a call from olivia who said she knew just the gal: amyd, who, although her bread-and-butter is making smart clothing for sartorially savvy folk like lizard mcgee and what i imagine to be a motley assortment of other stylish friends, she also happens to make these wonderful, handcrafted, reusable coffee sleeves, constructed of felt, but which felt’s in turn made of recycled soda bottles (!); and since we’re promoting our friends over at luck bros coffee shop, wouldn’t that perfect!? [ed note: olivia didn’t sound like that.]



long story, short: amyd rocks. unequivocally. it was obvious from our first conversation, obvious from her subsequent emails, obvious from her website, obvious when, after a couple weeks of emailing back and forth, i finally had the pleasure of meeting her, and it was obvious just now as we got off the phone. hanging with her and her kids for a bit, usually disparate words like ‘parenthood,’ ‘panache,’ and ‘aplomb’ started to spring to mind together, punctuated by an emphatic ‘cool.’

had such a good time partnering with her on this, least we thought we could do was shine the spotlight on her for a bit, so i fired off some amateurish, journalistic-type questions via email, she was game enough to respond back, and you’ll find the exchange in part ii of this unwieldy post…

be one of the first 100 in the door on saturday at tiny canary and get one of these, plus a buy-1-get-1-free coupon to luck bros., which is literally right down the street from junctionview. support your local, independent coffee shop!


still in beta

November 8, 2007


November 7, 2007


going to be out of town for this. tempted to cancel our trip.

we’re working on something BIG here, though — our contribution to both the indie art capital campaign and the future of columbus — and we’ve got i love treefort in our corner.

stay tuned. go to this meeting. be the future.


she’s crafty

October 4, 2007


from cassette belt buckles and handcrafted paper goods to jewelry from sweet stella and hard-to-find ‘zines, olivia’s always got the coolest $@#! over at wholly craft!, which is why we’re so excited to call her one of our newest clients.

next month we’ll be partnering up along with columbus underground, the couchfire collective, alive! and i love treefort, in sponsorship of the tiny canary indie design market at junctionview studios, in grandview, november 17th & 18th.

what’s on tap? oh, just 40 or so local and national independent artists, designers, and DIY crafters, hawking their creative wares all under one roof — jewelry, prints, glass, ceramic, clothing, stationery… and more.

support independent artists, designers, and crafters. check the tiny canary etsy shop for goodies. do not. miss. this.