Cleveland Bazaar Bizarre Spotlight

The holidays are fast approaching, and as they do comes the bevy of crowded mall sales, super crafty fairs with reindeer potholders and mail order catalogs three inches thick being delivered to your home.  It can get quite chaotic…and impersonal.

If you’d like to find a more personal gift, a unique gift, or a gift made with love there is an alternative to the frenzy or uninspiring.

Cleveland’s very own Bazaar Bizarre is approaching as fast as the holidays, and it’s chock full of regional artists this year who have done their very best to create items that are unique and creative. It the perfect opportunity to support your local economy by purchasing from an independent artists, and to give a gift this year with a personal touch. (Of course, you’ll be very tempted to pick something up for yourself too!)

I’ve selected a few artists to give you an idea as to the diversity and depth of items you might find.

FOR THE LITTLE ONES:

Be sure to visit Little Korboose where you can find organic (yea organic!) onesies for little tots with adorable designs created by April, the artist such as the Santa’s Helper Baby Deer onesie.  il_430xn43908394

Are your little ones excited for Santa’s arrival.  Start preparations by getting this Cookies for Santa plate.(A deal at only $15.00)il_430xn43906543

FOR YOUR GEARHEAD:

Got a gearhead in your life who already has all the tools and toolboxes he needs?  Garbella offers a funky Gear Scarf, made of super soft cotton with this fun metallic design.

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FOR YOUR CRAZY BROTHER OR SISTER:

What could be more festive than a totally toungue in cheek tee from Psycho Reindeer ? Each shirt seems to have been created with just the right amount of sarcastic wit for that smart “ahem” you know.

smallcheesereindeer

FOR YOUR MOTHER, YOUR CO-WORKERS and YOU!

Several artist of Cleveland Handmade will be running a collective tabel at the bazaar offering you a one-stop shop with items such as mandala art (They’re gorgeously detailed! I own one), jewelry with victorian/gothic flair to modern pop!,  handmade glass and more.

il_430xn20437365Super Go Green Mandala, Playnature Productions

il_430xn36842037A Dapper Cat Gentlemen Necklace, by BeautifulEra

Ready for the best part?

It’s a FREE show!  There’s no admission charge.

This year the show returns to the building complex (and former home of 1300 Gallery) where it all began: 78th Street Studios: 1300 W. 78th St to 1305 W. 80th St., north parking lot, north entrance — accessible from W. 78th OR W 80th St.

* Saturday December 13th from noon to 9:00 p.m.
* Sunday December 14th from noon to 6:00 p.m.

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Cleveland Handmade Market

Some of the ladies of Cleveland Handmade are getting together to put on a Cleveland Handmade Market. (I won’t actually be selling at this one as I’ve got too many other things on my plate but I may stop by) If you want to see what local artists have been busy working on for the holiday season, get a jump on your holiday shopping for handmade goods, and perhaps grab a cup of coffee as well here’s the details:

Sunday . november 23rd . 2008 . 10am-4pm

mojo’s coffee . 600 dover center road . bay village . ohio . 44140

440.892.4040

Check out the following artists who will be present:

Jill Slaby Lake Erie Beach Glass LaPetite Fleur Virtual Lori

Lazy T Crochet HandmadeGoods Beautiful Era Ramona

Petite Libellule Stargazer Designs Smashing Leah Ana Designs


Bazaar Bizarre Cleveland 2008–It’s Bizarre to not go!

Well, the most fun “craft” show is returning to Cleveland again this year.  First let me be a bit of a lame writer, and post the “official” press release first.  I’ll include my own two cents after the release.

Bazaar Bizarre Cleveland, the Northeast Ohio branch of this beloved national indie craft fair (with branches in Boston, San Francisco, Austin, LA and more) is returning for its 4th annual show — the biggest and best one yet!

With over 75 vendors from NEO and surrounding states, more than double the number of previous years, Bazaar Bizarre is a one-stop-shop for all your holiday gift needs — there’s even onsite gift wrapping this year! Buy local, and support local artists!

* Saturday December 13th from noon to 9:00 p.m.
* Sunday December 14th from noon to 6:00 p.m.

This year the show returns to the building complex (and former home of 1300 Gallery) where it all began: 78th Street Studios: 1300 W. 78th St to 1305 W. 80th St., north parking lot, north entrance — accessible from W. 78th OR W 80th St.

Show organizer Shannon Okey, a nationally-known crafts author and speaker, says “If you want something truly unique for that special someone this year, skip the mall and go DIY with Bazaar Bizarre!” As the show moves into its fifth year in Cleveland, it continues to attract a wide range of amazing artists who offer something for everyone.

Now as far as my own two cents:

You’re bizarre if you don’t go to this show. The fact that Cleveland get this national show in addition to other cities such as San Fran, Boston and L.A. just goes to show how cool Cleveland’s art scene really is.  We’ve got enough fun artists here to give shoppers plenty of opportunities to find unique handmade items.  I went and perused the vendor list and there’s all sorts of goodies this year from organic baby clothes, some rather interesting cleveland based t’s, soaps, jewelry, recycled homegoods, and more.  I’ll actually be there this year (Valerie Tyler Designs ) as well as some of my personal favorite Cleveland artists such as Gina DeSantis with her GORGEOUS ceramics, and the folks of Cleveland Handmade will be as well.

So yeah, come check it out and get your holiday shopping on in one cool place.

Just What the Heck is Etsy

I’ve realized that so often I’ve blogged about sellers on Etsy, and treasuries on Etsy and have assumed that everyone just knows what Etsy is. However, that may not be the case. So if you were one of those people who has read this blog and scratched your head with question I thought I’d fill you in a bit.

Etsy was launched in 2005 as a web-site for the buying and selling of handmade items. In addition, it also includes some vintage and commercial craft and art supplies. It’s somewhat of an alternative to Ebay. Today the site includes thousands of sellers and even far more buyers. For those looking for goods made by individuals and not corporations it’s a fabulous place to search for something unique. Handmade items that can be found on Etsy include jewelry, clothing, handbags, toys, accessories, home decor, furniture, art, paper goods, linens, pottery and even edibles and some plants.

On Etsy, individual sellers maintain their own little (and some not so little) storefronts. They list items for sale, include descriptions and photographs. Buyers may then select the items they’d like for purchase. Paypal is most commonly used, though some sellers will occasionally accept other forms of payment.

There’s lots of other features on the site including treasuries in which etsy members showcase items of sellers they like, gift guides of items picked by the etsy admin, and pounce which will show items that have been sold or new items, and ways to search such as by color and location.

Those of you reading this from my local Cleveland may wish to check out the Shop Local feature and see what sellers in your area are creating. Anyone throughout the world may use this feature simply by typing in their location and finding the last 100 listings in their area.

I consider it to be part art gallery, part shopping mall, and partly a place to chat with other local artists (Cleveland Handmade, which I belong to participates in what is known as an Etsy Team and frequently chit chats on a forum)

(p.s. If you’re looking for my personal shop visit http://www.valerietyler.etsy.com)

If you’re a fan at all of unique items, independent artists or wish to support small businesses check it out and discover the thousands of people who are members of Etsy.