Thursday, August 13, 2009

Craft Smackdowns: Out of the studios and into the streets!

A dictionary definition of the term, Crafty: Skilled in or marked by underhandedness, deviousness or deception. Whoa. Some of the crafty and the artsy among us have started to get a little testy, a little antsy, even a little rowdy.

Quilting bees, sewing circles and such are going stronger than ever. There are other types of crafting gatherings that have been emerging over the recent years, and people might want to leave old stereotypes at the door.
Look out for painting posses. Stamping slams. Collage combat contests. And you know that if you mess with a knitter she (or he) will mess with you. Can the WSOPC (World Series of Polymer Clay) be far behind?

The Guerrilla Girls' Bedside Companion to the History of Western Art (above)

2010 Update: Visit San Jose Museum of Art's Art Rage, their new after work "social networking" event July 22nd. For a chance to chill out, The Bead Factory in Tacoma, Washington offers Bead Rehab the third Saturday of the month.

The American Craft Council show is held in San Francisco this August 14-16 and each day of the show, they're having a special Craft Gym in the demo area in Festival pavilion. Crafters will be toughing out Tea Staining and Rug Prodding on Friday, getting pumped up with Paper Quilling on Saturday and buffed up by Basic Metalworking Techniques on Sunday.
Consider Craft Guerrilla in the UK. Their aim, according to their manifesto, "is to join forces with other creative individuals and set up craft events in vacant or unused venues,associate with friendly businesses,provide a community to link and cross promote independent designer makers,sister armies in other cities,share web traffic,and provide realistic information and resources to our designer makers. Craft Guerrilla serves both as a resource and a viable platform to showcase up and coming designer maker talent."

Consider wild and crazy San Jose, California, There's A Work of Heart, a seemingly mild-mannered arts and crafts studio. They offer a Craft Rave.

"Craft the night away. All varieties of crafters are welcome. You have full access to our tools and supplies for scrapbooking, stamping, altered art and much more. Coffee and tea are included. Feel free to bring a bottle of wine and/or snacks to share."

The 'net is peppered with mentions of Craft camps, Craft parties and sleepovers, drop-in crafting events and a Craft Social in Chicago that looks like it will be a blast. One of my faves, guerrilla crafting, is to be the subject of a future blog post.

Through the Urban Sewing blog, they have loads of information including cool tutorials, and you can purchase informative books such as Subversive Seamster: Transform Thrift Store Threads into Street Couture

What may sound like a mealtime isn't even rest period for this sturdy group. The Spring Valley Library in Las Vegas offers the Craft Buffet.

Stacie Tamaki's Fun & Flirty Wedding & Lifestyle Blog had a Crafters Throwdown contest earlier this year and there is a hint that the contest may e held again. Bam!

Think you feel the earth rumbling beneath you? Maybe a Craft Uprising brewing? It's true. The Urban Craft Uprising was just held in early August. It began in 2004 and is Seattle's largest indie craft show with over 130 fabulous vendors.

The situation has become so widespread that if you wish to Craft you shouldn't have to go far... Wishcraft offers Acting Up! A Craft & Theater Camp in Chicago...
"Environmentally considerate parties & events - Esteem building creative camps - Unordinary craft classes & workshops."

The Godmother of Life Coaching
, Barbara Sher, has a prolific book, WISHCRAFT: How to Get What You Really Want. In honor of the book's 30th anniversary, fans recently had a Twitter Idea Party!Back to food, it often comes back to food, doesn't it? The restaurant ’wichcraft is a trendy and temptation-filled eatery in New York. It's a part of chef and restaurateur Tom Colicchio's Craft empire.

Colicchio's site speaks of "the Craft ethic of great ingredients and careful execution." Regardless of your craft, the goal usually is to make the item the best it can be and to put your own personal spin on it. Working hard so we're proud and can proclaim that we "Stand behind our dish."

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