Sunday, December 12, 2010

nearly half past december. WHAT?!?

I've been on a terrible blogging hiatus. No time really. Wrapping up classes, trying to make and buy Christmas gifts. I took a class today, work of course and oh yea, I've been all over the place. Literally. Last weekend I travelled to the OOAK Show and Sale in Chicago with my mum, sister, and darling little niece on the train. The 3 and half of us always go to the Ann Arbor Art Fair each year and OOAK Show. I always look forward to these precious days where I am surrounded by some of the most important and loved people in my life in a completely art saturated environment. I saved my pennies this year for Chitown knowing that there were a few artists I just couldn't go home without owning one of their pieces.
 My first major purchase were two beautiful little pouches from Robyn of shibangdesigns. I met her last year at the show in the etsy pavilion and bought one of her small coin pouches that also happen to fit smaller cameras (like my own!) I loved it so much that when I was perusing her shop before we went and spotted another beauty, I asked her to save it for me so I could snag it at the show. Of course I couldn't just get one though and ended up getting one of her "cosmetic cases." I'm sure it will end up being for crochet hooks or even occasionally used as a clutch when I'm feeling fancy. Here work is so lovely and extremely high quality. I'm a real sucker for it because she not only screenprints and sews everything herself, but dyes the wools that she uses for the fabtastic floral designs.
 At the Ann Arbor Art Fair this year I fell in love with Adam Egenolf 's stunning crystalline glazed pieces but his booth was so busy I couldn't even do my handle test of his mugs. Anyone who knows me or has been to my house knows that I have an extensive handmade mug collection. Every art fair I attend, another mug (sometimes two) comes home with me and thanks to the bars and hooks I acquired at IKEA over the summer I can continue a bit longer without finding a new means of display (oh and don't worry each one gets plenty of use too!) I know where each one came from and they were all picked for a very specific reason and are never purchases unless they feel JUST right in my hand.
 Anyhow, back to the Egenolf's work. I happily discovered that he was also at the OOAK show and after much debate decided I would rather have one of his "Grab Glasses." It is so comfy to hold onto and is the perfect water glass for me down in my studio.

My major purchase was from Sarah Chapman. I have admired her work every year we go to the show because on top of having a unique style and being extremely talented, she uses awesome textures, patinas, AND, most importantly to me anyway, cold connections. We all know my love affair with riveting so it is always nice to see someone else using these under appreciated means of joining metal. I had such a lovely chat with Sarah and picked out this little beauty after a bit of debate between it and an equally grand piece with a trilobite fossil inside of it. In the end the allure of this piece having the window on both sides won me over.
 But alas, I did not return home without a mug. In fact, the mug was my only non selfish purchase as it was for my husband. This massive mug from Zach Medler just screamed Joe and there were so many other great pieces to choose from. I especially loved a small covered jar that had a little couple block printed on it with an umbrella and rain coming down. His surface decorations with block printing were so different than anyone's I had ever seen which was quite refreshing indeed.
The trip wouldn't have been complete without obtaining one of my favorite guilty pleasures. Chicago Mix popcorn from Garrett's. Whoever decided that caramel corn and cheese popcorn should go together was an insane genius. MMMMMMTASTIC!
 So yea, I was selfish. Sometimes, one needs to indulge, especially when the next three weeks are going to be nothing but gift making, buying, and working. Anyone else splurged lately?  :D

Next time, my amazing experience tie dying with the farmers at Special Dreams Farms.