Rain & Shine at Renegadecomments (1) June 21st, 2008
Renegade Craft Fair, arguably the most famous craftivist and DIY large-scale event in the country, was last weekend and you know CraftStylish was there.
We had a prime corner spot in the empty pool at Brooklyn's McCarren Park that now serves as a concert and event venue. The first day, Saturday, was a shining example of extreme crafts and extreme weather.
The morning, and the crafts, were hot. Mary McKenzie and friends, the vendors next to us who have an Etsy shop called MaryMcK, were shielded by a wall of the most gorgeous handspun skeins of colorful, mottled yarn I had ever seen. They also had beautiful, simple, silk quilts, small knitted items, cards and the most fun knitted and sewn small plushies, including a sewn octopus and knit Mr. Roboto design. If you were feeling more crafty than spendy, you could buy the pattern for only $4 and make the plushie yourself - Mary swore up and down that it was "so simple."
We were lucky to have a spot across from two of our favorite crafters who were sharing a booth. Cathy Pitters, co-founder of Portland's Crafty Wonderland and desinger of the super-good Bossa Nova Baby line, and Cathy Callahan, aka Cathy of California, had their amazing wares set up in a colorful and head-spinning display of craftiness.
Bossa Nova Baby is a line that mixes influences as diverse as religious iconography, Elvis and sewing machine motifs to create the cutest embroidered circle skirts, cardigans, great patches, cool belt buckles and unforgettable home trinkets.
Cathy of California takes her inspiration from crafts of the 60's and 70's, updating them in small but meaningful ways that reference the past while retaining their sense of feeling au courant. She creates amazing projects and DIY kits for her colorful straw mushroom pincushions, ribbon straw jewelry, stitchery projects and more.
"Does it rain like this often in New York?" asked Cathy C.
The steaminess of the morning at Renegade quickly gave way to a rain and thunderstorm the likes of which are rarely seen. We looked on in horror as the beautiful, new foamboard sign promoting our latest CraftStylish issue, Quick Stuff to Make, started running into an inky mess. However, we quickly piled our things onto our booth's table and ran over to help the Cathies, whose beautiful wares were getting drenched despite their best efforts with handmade plastic walls for their booth.
Many crafters looked stricken as their beloved handmade items got soaked, at times the wind was so strong it blew a few of the tents upside down! Craftaster seemed imminent as the repurposed pool began filling up with water...
The rain ended the fair a bit earlier than the scheduled 7 p.m. on Saturday but I hear that the weather on Sunday was perfect. All's well that ends craftily.