Posts Tagged ‘upcycle’

bunny foo-foo by k.smith

Oh my GOSH.  Happy Friday, comrades.  It was a long week, but we’re ending it in a special way.  That special way is by meeting with Kate Smith of k.smith at Crema (the snazzy new coffee shop on Commercial Street, next to Rosemont’s snazzy new produce market).  This is an exclusive treat, since k.smith’s web presence is pretty much limited to this Big Thaw post.  So!  The only way you’ll be able to get your hands on these oh-so-soft bunny foo-foos, pot holders, herbal eye sachets, pillows and more is by coming to The Thaw — poor you!  😉

Sometimes it’s best to let beautiful things speak for themselves.  The light coming through the glass block windows, the warm wood tones of the tables at Crema and the upcycled stylings of Kate Smith speak for themselves — I won’t yak about it anymore, just let you see for yourself:

upcycled sweater potholders by k.smith

it's all in the details - by k.smith

individual designs - by k.smith

bunny foo-foo close-up by k.smith

herbal eye pillows by k.smith

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Upcycled Vest from Mosey, $15, click to view listing!

Finally!  Something for the kiddos!  Mosey Handmade will be joining our vendors at The Big Chill with the upcycled clothes, felted hats, and Waldorf-inspired playthings that are the creations of Jes Anthonis, lady behind the magic.  Sometimes pictures speak more for these great items than my rambling can.  I’m feeling a little speechless at all this kiddie goodness, so let’s have a picture show:

Upcycled Felted Snails, $10 each

These funny little snails are so sweet, and a really creative use of extra sweater bits!

Learn to Count with Toadstools! $20 from Mosey Handmade

Learn to Count with Toadstools! $20 from Mosey Handmade

The bright colors and tactility of these natural counting mushrooms will make it fun for any little guy or lady to learn how to count!

Keeping Wee Ones Warm with Mosey Handmade!

We’re so excited that Jes will be joining us with the goods from Mosey Handmade, and she’ll be sharing a table with Elizabeth Miller of timblebee!  Mm!  2 for 1!  Click on the pictures to get links to the listings shown above so you can start picking out some supreme Santa gifts for little ones now!

Discovering Color

You can see the sweet, colorful goods from Mosey Handmade in person at The Big Chill arts, crafts and vintage sale on Saturday, December 3rd, 2011 at The Mayo Street Arts Center at 10 Mayo St. in Portland, Maine.  The sale will run from 10am to 4pm and features 30+ incredible local vendors!

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Oh. My. God. Allsey has the best stuff, ever!

The BIG THAW:  What vintage goodies and repurposed jewelry are you stocking up on for The BIG THAW?
Allsey:  I once managed an antique shop and collected some unique items through that experience and also caught a serious vintage collecting bug, which continues to this day. At the show, I’ll be bringing vintage handbags, all kinds of jewelry with repurposed vintage findings/charms and lots of kitschy goodies collected over the years.


It's the simple things in life, according to Jen from Allsey


TBT:  What inspires the creation of your work?  A lot of it seems funny, sweet, nostalgic.  Where do you get your inspiration?

A:  I grew up in the DC area, but my dad is originally from Westbrook and we always came to visit my grandparents in the summer here in Maine. My favorite memory is visiting the Lobster Shack at Two Lights with my family, which I still do as often as I can. My biggest inspiration is the wonderful circle of quirky family and friends that loves to just laugh and have fun, thus my obsession with all things that elicit a smile. Life is too darn short not to surround yourself with goofiness, giggles and not taking things so seriously.  I was also lucky to be a child of the 70s and let’s face it, there was some really kitschy stuff developed from that decade, but wonderful simple pleasures. I remember watching Romper Room, digging through my cereal box for that latest plastic toy and watching my mom buy Avon. With everything going so fast these days, often we forget the experience of just experiencing things. Collecting vintage is such a reminder of slowing it down a bit and remembering that playing Parcheesi and listening to an old radio is way more fun than that latest digital application.

Kitsch from Allsey

TBT:  What do you do in the spring time to celebrate the yearly thaw?
A:  I am fortunate to have some space to garden in but unfortunately lack the green thumb. However, I still try my best and try to look like I know what I’m doing by digging holes, planting seeds and throwing mulch down. Sometimes, things actually do grow; it’s always a surprise, especially since I usually can’t remember what I planted where. Also, last spring, I started an archaeology dig so to speak down by the banks of the Saco River where there once was an old farm (where I live), so now that the snow cover is receding I’m back down there carefully unearthing interesting treasures. Some I’ll be bringing to the show, you’ll have to come and see what I found!

Excellent Machinery from Allsey



Buried treasure by the Saco River??  Yes, we will be there to see what you’ve found.  Once I had a friend whose mother worked at a place that had an old carriage house out back and we would always find utensils, medicine bottles, etc. in the sand.  So cool!  You, too, can come see what Allsey found by the banks of the Saco River, and get an up-close look at all these awesome wares (mostly the little kid at the top of this article) at The BIG THAW Arts, Crafts and Vintage Sale on Saturday, April 16th, 10am-4pm at 10 Mayo Street (Mayo Street Arts Center) in Portland.  Hurrah!


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Ladies and gentlemen of the internets, I present to you our vendor spotlight on BIG THAW vendor, Hand Me Down Designs.  Malaika Picard, owner and seamstress extraordinaire, has been such a valuable resource and not shy at all pushing her sleeves up and getting her hands dirty in the muck of craft fair construction.  OK – that involves writing emails, making tough calls, hanging posters, writing spotlights, networking, scouting locations, brainstorming poster ideas, etc. etc.  So it may not be mucky, but it sure is hard work!  Shanna Tice (our other fearless, volunteer, totally awesome coordinator) has taken the time to write this Spotlight.  Thank you to both of them for being so, so, so, so, so, (you get the idea) helpful to me.  I ❤ them, 4-eva.  –Audrey


Your beloved, now too-tiny, corduroys repurposed by Hand Me Down Designs

Pockets, pouches, and snaps, OH MY!  Malaika Picard is the bright and clever mind behind Hand Me Down Designs, a new enterprise featuring all things remade, transformed, up-cycled, and re-invented. The beloved corduroy pants you can no longer fit into will be metamorphosed into trendy wallets, a new purse, or an essential iPhone or blackberry case.

Checkbook Cover/Wallet by Hand Me Down Designs

The once preferred pair of jeans that you don’t want anymore, will be reborn into tote bags you will use every day, spacious slouch bags, checkbook covers, or the most fantastic little business card holder you’ve ever seen!

One-of-a-Kind Slouch Bag from Hand Me Down Designs

Malaika’s has an attention to detail that extends to every aspect of her excellent sewing skills. She is very deliberate when placing pockets on her designs or choosing a shape for her creations. I had the pleasure of sitting down with her one day and discussing her budding business, and the origin of her merchandise. When talking about where she gets her idea’s she mentioned with a big grin on her face, “From my customers!” She went on to explain that so many of her inspirations for her new idea’s comes from customer suggestions. However it is also clear that she has a sophisticated  eye for what she likes and what she thinks will hold up to her standards as a design.

Recycled Denim Barrette from Hand Me Down Designs

Recycled Denim Bracelet by Hand Me Down Designs

Something also very impressive with Hand Me Down Designs is Malaika’s desire to be versatile. Among her meticulous bags, wallets and pouches you will find fun and fresh uses of these re-purposed materials in hairpieces, bracelets, and cute little key chains.

Hand Me Down Designs is a venture that Malaika is delighted to have started. She loves that it will give her the opportunity to maintain a focus on being a stay at home mom who home schools while making money for her family. She is also praying that this adventure gives her unique ways to stay in God’s will and share it with others. I am just delighted to have become fast friends with Malaika and to be sharing experiences with her in this super fun event as a ‘Big Thaw’ vendor!


Many thanks to Shanna Tice for her awesome feature!  It should also be noted that Malaika offers custom bags, jewelry, barrettes, key chains, etc. if you have a special garment that is no longer wearable but you’d like to see turned in to something functional again.

Hand Me Down Designs is one of nearly 40 artists, crafters and vintage vendors who will be peddling their wares at The BIG THAW on Saturday, April 16th from 10am to 4pm at the Mayo Street Arts Center at 10 Mayo St. in Portland, ME.  We are so looking forward to seeing you there!

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