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Posts Tagged ‘handmade’

Smart Alex, samples some berries!

Introducing “Smart” Alex, the creator and concocter behind Smart Alex Jams.  We all know that great handmade businesses often come from a passionate, creative person doing something that very labor intensive and very delicious for years and years.  And all those years they hear people telling them “This is so good, you should sell it!”  That’s exactly the story behind the Jams at Smart Alex, and we are really looking forward to picking up a jar of our own at The Big Chill on Sunday, December 2nd!

Blueberry Spice Jam by Smart Alex Jams

With flavors like Ginger Peach, Crabapple  Jelly, Blueberry Spice, Raspberry Mango, Cranberry Orange Zest, Christmas Jam and more available there’s gonna be a little something for everyone.  We hope she brings tasters!

Smart Alex!

Please join us, Smart Alex and all the other wonderful vendors at The Big Chill arts, crafts and vintage sale on Sunday, December 2nd from 10am to 4pm at Mayo Street Arts, 10 Mayo Street, Portland, Maine.

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Good morning!  Chilly one out there…

Reversible Enamel Pendant by T.S. Mastro Enamel Jewelry

Today we feature Tracy of T.S. Mastro Enamel Jewelry.  This December will be her second time selling with The Big Thaw/Chill and we’re happy to have her!  Last May, Tracy called me before the event to say her car had lost one of its wheels on her way there.  What?!  So naturally I just figured we were down one person… but then a couple hours later who shows up?  Tracy!  Steadfast commitment to handcrafted arts, love that.

Enamel Pendant by T.S. Mastro Enamel Jewelry

T.S. Mastro’s work offers brightly colored patterns in color to suit all wardrobes and tastes – in fact, many of the pendants are reversible so they’re doing double duty.  Perfectly placed geometric accents and negative space make her pieces truly unique.

Green Donut Pendants and Earrings by T.S. Mastro Enamel Jewelry

Tracy has a busy schedule this holiday seasoned, and we’re honored to be on it!  Come check out her work and two floors of other fantastic vendors at The Big Chill arts, crafts and vintage sale on Sunday, December 2nd at Mayo Street Arts, 10 Mayo Street in Portland!

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Barn Owl on reclaimed Maine barnwood by Mermaid Meadow, a Big Chill vendor!

As promised, the December 2012 Big Chill vendors are posted here!  And we couldn’t be happier.  We saw a lot of familiar names coming in the mail along with a host of fresh, new applicants to The Big Chill.  We’re so psyched to bring you all this good art just in time for the gift-giving-season!

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Evening Sun Ring by Sweet Sincerity

Ok, duders!  Time for some jewelry!  Surprisingly, we had very few jewelry applications this year.  One of them came from the wonderful Bethany of Sweet Sincerity jewelry, located way up there in Bangor, ME.  In advance:  thanks for driving down to see us, Bethany!!

The beadwork of earrings, bracelets and necklaces at Sweet Sincerity have always been fancy, ornate, and colorful – and just this year Bethany has been learning jewelry smithing, adding an entirely new dimension to the products she offers.  Sweet Sincerity is on Facebook – click here to go to the page and “like” it!

Bethany is intense, like the jewelry at Sweet Sincerity!

Bethany answered some of our “Big Chill” questions, here are her answers!:

The Big Chill:  What is the first sign of winter, in your opinion?

Sweet Sincerity:  When I stop shaving my legs, comforted by the knowledge that they will not see the light of day for the next 7 months…

TBC:  What items from Sweet Sincerity will keep people happy throughout the dark days of winter?

SS:  I hope that the thought of the Sweet Sincerity Jewelry they know they are wearing somewhere under the layers of long johns, mittens, sweaters and scarves will warm their little hearts!

TBC:  What’s your favorite winter comfort food?

SS:  Tea and cream-filled cupcakes.  Or tequila.

Us, too!  Join Bethany from Sweet Sincerity for some salt, lime and tequila (ok, not really) at The Big Chill arts, crafts and vintage sale on Saturday, December 3rd at the Mayo Street Arts Center in Portland.  Yes!

Stellar Earrings from Sweet Sincerity

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What a fun day we had nearly three weeks ago!  The BIG THAW elves are busily compiling photographs for your viewing pleasure.

In the meantime… the rumors are true!  The BIG FREEZE is slated to commence post-Thanksgiving, pre-Christmas of 2011.  For more information on this upcoming event please subscribe to our blog in the field at the right.  Or email:  thebigthawportland at gmail dot com for more information!

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Ya-da-da! Melon Bee!!

Hola, readers!  We caught up with Bevin Holmberg of Melon Bee who will be sharing her space at The BIG THAW with Melissa Bankhead, seamstress extraordinaire.  We learned that Bevin is a recent Maine transplant (Welcome, Bevin!) and that she has a super cool ‘day job’ to help pay the bills…
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The BIG THAW:  What goodies can customers expect to see while they’re browsing at The BIG THAW?

Melon Bee:  Well, Melissa is going to have some really neat fabric items, like aprons, cute baby bibs, and sweet iPad covers.  She does fun fabric trades with her mom, all the way on the other coast in California.  I (Bevin) am going to bring prints of a series I painted… it’s an animal for every letter of the alphabet!  The originals are colored pencil, ink and water color.  I painted all the animals during a pretty miserable winter in Minnesota, and I really believe they helped me maintain some sanity!  I have also been working on some little painted panels inspired by Swedish textile patterns lately, and I will have a few at the sale.

Loggerhead Turtle by Melon Bee

TBT:  Lots of your work deals with animals and animals are our favorite.  Do you pick the ones you want to illustrate at random or for a reason?
MB:  Growing up, if I wasn’t outside exploring, I was inside pouring through world book encyclopedias, trying to draw all the interesting animals I found.  As a kid, I wanted to be a marine biologist, and my favorite animal was a manatee, so that was a given for the letter ‘m’ in this series, but I tried to make some stretches for most of the other letters!

TBT:  When you’re not painting what occupies your time?
MB: When I am not making art on my own, I am hiding in the backroom of Trader Joe’s, working on signage for the store.  I also love riding my bike and walking around Portland (don’t have a car)… there’s so much to explore!  I’ve been taking a ceramics class at Portland Pottery, too, which has been fantastic.
 

Melon Bee

TBT:  What do you love most about the Spring in Maine?

MB: Well, I actually just moved here in September, and the Fall was beautiful!  …So, I haven’t experienced a Maine Spring yet, BUT I am super excited because I imagine it’s similar to Minnesota.  People just come out of hiding, and everyone is thrilled to get outside and take a deep breath of fresh air.  There’s something about warmer weather after it’s been so cold that just makes your whole body relax!

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Thanks, Bevin!  You can find Melon Bee’s creations and more at The BIG THAW Arts, Crafts and Vintage Sale on Saturday, April 16th (this weekend!) at 10 Mayo Street (Mayo Street Arts Center).  Please email thebigthawportland@gmail.com if you have any questions!

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Conversation Pieces by David Jacobson Glass

Ohhh drizzle, drizzle.  The weather’s forecasting cloudy and in the 40s for Saturday but as long as it’s ANYTHING but this we’ll be psyched!  Actually, rain is a huge part of the thaw – after all, how would thirsty crocuses get what they need to start popping their heads out of the ground?

Here’s a bit of glass magic from David Jacobson Glass to brighten up your gray day.  We’re intrigued by his text bubbles and beautiful rendered housewares!

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What new wares can customers expect to see at The BIG THAW?

I’ve been making a lot of new work for this show that I’m excited about.  Handblown glass bud vases in celadon, robin’s egg blue, turquoise and white. More slumped glass platters and bowls in new color combinations. For example, black and white stripes, cobalt blue stripes, a pale blue stripe that looks like spun sugar. And, my Conversation Pieces™ — just like the word balloons you see in comic strips, but made out of handblown white glass. You can hang them on the wall, if you choose, and write and draw on them with dry erase markers to say whatever you want, whenever you want.

Vases by David Jacobson Glass in super Spring colors

 

2.  What inspires your glass work?

Textile patterns, and colors and textures that I see in nature. The texture of the finished piece is as important to me as the colors I use and how it looks. For example, the glass bowls I make have a lot of texture as a result of the two layers of glass canes that I fuse together.

Textures and Tones in David Jacobson's Work

 

3.  What is your favorite thing about Spring in Maine?

Knowing that summer is right behind, with tennis and kayaking.

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As if we weren’t excited enough for Saturday!  You can find David peddling his wares at The BIG THAW Arts, Crafts and Vintage sale this Saturday, April 16th.  Mayo Street Arts Center, 10 Mayo St, Portland, right off of Cumberland Ave on the East End.  We look forward to seeing you there!

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