NighBluey: I am not an artist or a designer of anything but I am told that I am artistic. Still not sure what that means. Maybe I am an artisan. I would like to be called that – it would be flattering.
When “I grow up”, I will own a flower shop. Arranging twigs, branches and stems all day – that would be my dream come true.
I live with an infinitely patient man, two dogs and three cats in a little community on an Ontario lake (which freezes in the winter and becomes home to thousands of ice huts and our annual by-the-shore rink). I am a “country yuppie” you might say. For years, I lived in big cities but I am already busy shedding my big city attachments. In the summer, I try to spend as much time as I can outdoors, including in my garden looking low to the ground and high into the trees, as well as sailing and taking bike trips. My partner, Kevin, and I are also trying to get rid of all the “things” we accumulated over the years, boats, old cars and powertools we will never use.
Above print is from Berkley Illustration.
One of the very fun themes you’ll find on Etsy? Animals.
From cute and cuddly to somewhat scary and everything in between, animals are very popular.
What you’ll need to decide is if you’d like a t-shirt, art, jewelry, accessories, wall decals or something else, perhaps?
I think the theme today is bringing the zoo home – but with no need for permits, a litterbox, or veterinarian’s appointments. I hope you’ll join me as I search through Etsy for some of the best animals I can find.
I know birds have been wildly popular over the years, and with good reason too. They’re beautiful animals and they inspire us to dream great dreams and envision bright futures. Their wings, soaring, remind us to believe and to have hope for the future.
Squirrels. Yes, I said squirrels. I know someone must be pretty fond of them as Etsy has 130 pages of squirrels, of which I’ve shared just a few favourites below. Some might say a squirrel is just a rodent – but I’d say, as rodents go – they’re pretty cute.
Just because they’re slow doesn’t mean they can’t be pretty darn adorable. Not sure which animal I’m referring to? The turtle, cute – perhaps not cuddly – but reliable!
So there you have it – a sample of the animals of Etsy… Hope this inspires you to do some searching to see where your favourite animals are hiding on Etsy!
Sweet slips to let peek out from under your skirts.
A Slip Shop: I am Kaity and I love fashion and creating. And, to my very supportive husband’s dismay, I love trying new things and DIYing myself through life. I can’t say that I have any specific hobbies or loves (other than my husband and adorable children and, well, fashion, and oreo blizzards, and…okay, so maybe I’m not completely accurate here.), mainly because my hobbies and interests are always changing and evolving.
It’s fabulous farmers market season and these veggies look good enough to eat, if you could eat something so cute. You could, hover cuddle up to them, though, since they’re crocheted from wool. When Ohioja‘s creator Ylenia became unemployed she filled her free time in various corners of the web and discovered amigurumi and instantly fell in love. So much so that she rushed to the nearest bookshop and picked up a crochet guide so that she could get started immediately.
With some encouragement from her friends and after the success of a DIY festival, she decided to start selling her creations. She’s still learning the ins and outs of selling online. If you happen to be in Italy, you might see Ylenia out with her wares in corner markets, festivals and punk rock gigs.
My favorite item is onion, no doubt. Why? Because, talking about amigurumi, it’s hard to see onions and it’s a pity. They are nice, polite and kinda tender-hearted. What’s more I have to say it’s always funny to create an amigurumi onion.
As you can tell, Ylenia’s biggest influence is the grocer’s, but not all of her creations are vegetable based. All of her creations begin as a simple sketch. Then she studies it for a while, imagining how it will shape up and then she jumps in with her crochet hook. The finishing touch is the expression.
Ylenia lives in Florence and works in a Tattoo studio. She likes music and animals. She’s been a vegetarian since 2004, so you can see why she loves vegetables so much!
You can check out her blog where you can find a lot of photos and some info about her upcoming markets.
Don’t get me wrong, I love talking about myself; just ask my fella. He knows firsthand that it’s one of my favourite topics of conversation. When it comes to this column, though, I prefer to shine the spotlight away from myself and towards the dozens and dozens of talented artisans and crafters that I come across on the web and in person. Save for the one upcycled pillow of my own that I managed to sneak into a piece, in the 11 months of writing my weekly “Going Green” articles I have pretty much resisted the urge to toot my own horn…until now. I have recently joined a local crafters cooperative and with the recent opening of our brick and mortar shop, I am absolutely bursting to tell you all about it.
Taking over a former art gallery space in Winnipeg’s funky South Osborne neighbourhood, the Mozy Rue ECO Collective opened its doors to the public on Tuesday, June 13th. The collective itself is made up of several members of Winnipeg’s art and craft community, who met through local craft shows and Etsy street-team events. The collection of handmade goods on the shelves will be constantly changing and evolving (much like the people who make them), which will give shoppers a completely new shopping experience with every visit. Organized into little “boutiques” within the bright, open space, customers can browse for everything from jewelry to furniture and, believe me, everything in between. The only commonality (besides their inherent coolness, of course) is that all items are handmade and “eco-friendly” in some way, either created from new, natural, sustainable materials, or upcycled/recycled/repurposed from discarded items. This is just a small sampling of the many members and consigners at the shop, but it should give you a taste of what we’re all about.
The shop takes its name from Jody, aka Mozy Rue, the visionary ECO-crafter who brought us all together and has been working tirelessly to make the shop a reality. In addition to being the driving force (and muscle) behind the venture, she is an talented artisan as well. Visitors to the Mozy Rue ECO Collective shop will be both surprised and impressed by Jody’s eclectic collection; her line of upcycled goods runs the gamut from boots made from men’s suits and repurposed leather (pictured above) to pendants cut from bottles, which are also available in Jody’s online shop.
Regular readers of this column will recognize EmmsgEMs from previous mentions, as well as a recent full-length interview . In that feature, I introduced Emily’s new line of eco-friendly jewelry, which makes use of natural and sustainable materials. When I found out that Emily had signed on as a member of the collective, I was thrilled…but a little worried. It’s definitely going to take a lot of willpower for me to work my shifts in the shop with lovely things like the ones in the EmmsgEMs display case tempting me. I know I will be unable to resist her recycled glass earrings, like the ones pictured above. Visit the EmmsgEMs shop to see what I mean…and, really, don’t even bother trying to “just browse”.
When you move into a house, you hope for good neighbours. Well, the same goes when you set-up shop in a new place. My own hopes for “good neighbours” at the ECO Collective store were more than exceeded when I saw the display right beside mine. It is a rare that I am speechless (again, just ask my fella), but that’s exactly what happened when I saw dconstruct’s beautiful (and beautifully presented) line. Working in feather-light concrete and 40% recycled resin, the award-winning team behind dconstruct create jewelry pieces that are simple, stunning and, well…simply stunning. I absolutely love the resin cuffs with embedded natural materials and concrete pieces, pictured above.
Needless to say, I am thrilled to be in such great company and part of what is promising to be a very exciting (ad)venture. As for my own little “shop-within-a-shop”, I have filled my space with all sorts of upcycled goodies, like my signature Domino Pins (below), collage mirrors and upcycled t-shirt pillows. I have already begun expanding my line, though, and I am sure that being surrounded by so many talented and like-minded women and men is going to be a fantastic inspiration for me. I can’t wait to see what the future holds…
The Mozy Rue ECO Collective is open for business at 531 Osborne Street in Winnipeg, Manitoba. If you can’t make it out to say “hi” in person, please visit our online shops, or visit our blog for more info.