Snowed In…And Loving It.

Looks like today is going to be a great day for staying in and making books. We got what looks like a foot of snow overnight, and today it will turn to freezing rain and ice pellets… As I said, a great day for sipping hot lemon & ginger tea and playing with paper. I have several commissions to finish before Christmas, so the timing is fantastic.

It’s been a busy weekend, so I haven’t had much time to work on my projects. Friday night, B and his friend John and I attended the Canadian Aboriginal Music Awards. One of B’s nephew’s was nominated for an award, so it was all very exciting. Unfortunately, there were so many technical glitches throughout the show that it was difficult to thoroughly enjoy the evening. First, they started 20 minutes late. Then, the teleprompter was showing the text backwards, and when they finally got it right, the text would disappear. I felt terrible for the poor awards presenters, left standing on a stage with no text to read; most of them were sponsors who had no experience or ability to improvise during awkward moments… Several times, when they listed the nominees in a certain category, as they called one artist’s name, another artist’s music would begin playing. Argh!

The event planner in me found it very painful to sit back and watch all of this. So many times, I wanted to run to the stage, push the production people aside and take over the damn show!

Despite the numerous glitches, there were a few highlights during the evening:
Derek Miller‘s performance – I saw him a few years ago in Inuvik, Northwest Territories and this guy can really rock!
Lorne Cardinal, aka “Davis” on Corner Gas – he presented one of the awards. When there were technical glitches during his part, he was the only presenter who was able to ad lib through it – this guy is so frickin’ hilarious!

In the end, B’s nephew didn’t win, but they did perform during the show – a great honour in itself. Unfortunately, it looks like the list of winners hasn’t even been posted to the CAMA website yet…

Yesterday my friend C and I checked out the first ever City of Craft event – I wanted to apply to this craft fair, but unfortunately missed the deadline. So I thought I’d check it out to see if it would be worthwhile to attend next year’s event.

What a disappointment. From a logistical standpoint, traffic flow was a nightmare. There was barely enough room for one person to walk in the aisles between tables. Because of this, you couldn’t really stop and look at anything properly, because people were shoving their way around you. The quality and variety of products was also disappointing. Am I the only person who doesn’t “get” crocheted penises and boobs??? Everything looked the same – it seemed to all be about buttons, yarn, and softies. Nothing really new or innovative. Nothing especially eye-catching. I left without buying anything – an extremely rare occurance for me.

My friend C was just as disappointed as I was with the event. She’s an event planner too (we worked together on Canada Day and Winterlude celebrations in Ottawa), and we started talking about all the things we would do differently to improve the event. Suddenly, it dawned on us – why not organize our own craft fair! We certainly have skills and experience on our side, as well as a few good contacts in the industry.

The idea of planning our own high-quality, curated arts & crafts fair was very appealing to us and we have already come up with a number of exciting ideas. I’ll keep you posted as we move forward with this project…

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2 thoughts on “Snowed In…And Loving It.

  1. I’m glad somebody else had the same reaction I did to the recent incarnation of craft fairs. I was deeply disappointed with the Renegade Craft fair and the Indie marketplace in New York this year. I’m really glad to see people getting into crafts again, but I can’t see the appeal of a lot of the stuff being exhibited, either. I wonder if it’s not because people think this is a cool way to make some money, rather than because they really have a drive to create and a vision to express. I thought I was just being grumpy.

  2. Lee,

    Thanks for your comment. Glad to know I wasn’t just being grumpy either!

    One of my main issues is that I have little patience for poorly planned events. If you’re going to go to the trouble of organizing a large event and heavily promoting it, you better damn well make sure it runs smoothly…but that’s just my opinion.

    Additionally, I prefer crafts that are functional AND aesthetically appealing (which is why I love handmade books so much). Many of the items on diplay this weekend were not only unappealing (to me), but I couldn’t figure out what I would ever do with them… I mentioned this in my post, but what would one do with a crocheted penis? As if that wasn’t bad enough, the crocheted penis was one of only three workshops being offered that day…

    I never realized until yesterday that I was a craft snob – or am I really?

    Anyone else out there have an opinion on the matter?

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