Thursday, June 24, 2010


We had a grand old time in Portland last week, and I wrote reviews of many of the restaurants and shops we visited on Yelp. We can't wait to go back!

A few highlights:

We enjoyed traversing Portland's many bridges across the Willamette River toll-free (a seeming miracle to Californians).

We appreciated the lush, verdant, profusion of nature in and around the city and visible from nearly every spot in the city.

We loved that despite the abundance of interesting things to see and do packed into a small city, it did not feel cramped.

No sales tax is a wondrous thing.

Never have we seen or even heard of a food cart culture like Portland's. In the SF Bay, I doubt I have ever seen a non-Mexican food cart. I didn't know there were non-Mexican food carts. Portland sure did show me what I was missing.

If we lived here we would see live music for cheap or free all the time. The city has a plethora of tiny music venues, which is exactly the kind we love to frequent. And a bustling music scene.

If we lived here we would become bicyclers. Right now we ride our bikes about twice a year. But because everything is so close by in Portland, it's practical to ride one's bike as a mode of transportation and not just as a leisure activity. The frequent rain and bicycling don't really mix though.

Don't try to pump your own gas anywhere in Oregon. It's illegal and gas station attendants will chastise you.

The drive down highway 5 was gorgeous, show stopping, majestic. At least the Oregon portion of it is; when you get to California, it suddenly becomes brown and drab.

We're so happy that we went on this little road trip. It was the perfect celebration for my successful thesis defense and completion of my M.A.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Summer Craft Shows Added

We are delighted to announce a couple more summer shows in our line up!

This Saturday, June 26, we'll be at the Artist Market at the Blue Macaw. Location is 2565 Mission St, San Francisco CA. Time is noon to 6pm. 50 awesome local vendors.

Also Sunday July 18 we'll make our sophomore appearance at Indie Mart at 1600 17th St, San Francisco, CA. Time is also noon to 6pm. Around 75 awesome local vendors, plus live bands, workshops, beer, DJ's, food, and fun.

On Saturday August 7 we'll be at the Knit One One Craft Sale. Location is 3360 Adeline Street, Berkeley, CA. Time is 10am - 4pm. About 12 hand-selected crafty vendors selling our wares at the beautiful Knit One One Studio.

And finally, on Sunday August 22 you can find us at the Rock Make Street Festival. Location is Treat Ave & 18th St., San Francisco, CA. Time is 11am - 6pm. Over 100 crafty vendors, plus lots of live music. 

We'll update with more shows as they get added!

Friday, June 11, 2010

I now have a Master of Arts in Communication

Today I passed my thesis defense. I'm no longer a graduate student working towards my M.A., which I felt like I've been doing forever (it's actually been a little under two years). It's a little surreal. First college, then graduate school: I've been going to university for the past six years. Now I'm done, with two degrees to my name.

Now to travel for a while!

Monday, June 7, 2010

Summer Show Season!

We joined etsy pretty late last June, so we didn't make last year's summer show season. But this year we're all in!

We already did a couple of great shows in the spring: Craft Happy in Fremont, and Artisan Village/Handmade Ho Down in Oakland.

We spent an exhausting 4 day long Memorial weekend vending at San Jose's Fanime Con, which was quite the experience! I'd never been to a Con and seen all the people dressed up and parading around and shopping my booth as if it was all in a day's work.

One benefit of having done such an event is that all other events seem blissfully short and easy in comparison! No matter how long the day or the show, it can't compare to the four day marathon of Fanime Con.

Yesterday we vended at San Francisco's Indie Mart, which was our first time vending outdoors. We learned many lessons, such as:

Be prepared for wind!
All our stuff, including our business cards, tablecloths, jewelry, and jewelry displays, kept blowing everywhere. Thank goodness Tyler brought a huge roll of electrical tape for just in case, as he was able to secure everything pretty well. But we sure had many near heart attacks!

Be prepared for sun!
Poor Tyler got terribly sunburned on his arms and neck. Yes, we did bring sunscreen, and yes, we both applied it every 2 hours. But the sun was fierce and he got painfully burned nonetheless. I was spared the worst of it by keeping my jacket on, even though it was hot.

Be prepared for dirt!
Everything got dirty. Little grimy black specks of dirt (or worse, who knows) blew onto everything all day long. Keep everything covered and sealed throughout the day as best you can. Of course, what's on display will inevitably get dirty. We have to clean everything now.

Be prepared for lack of bathrooms!
Luckily Whole Foods was only a couple blocks away, so we ran over there every time we had to use the bathroom. We didn't want to frequent the Porta Potties that were surely getting all torn up by the street fair peeps. I know there won't always be a handy Whole Foods nearby every outdoor event we do, so we'll have to bring paper towels, toilet tissue, hand sanitizer and wet naps to future shows.

Bring lots of water!
I didn't even know San Francisco got so hot in the summer. We downed all the bottled water that I packed, and probably could have drank 2 more bottles each. More is better when it comes to packing, as my mom taught me. If you have extra and you don't use it, it's no big deal. But if you need it and you don't have it, you're in trouble. You don't want to dip into your profits to buy overpriced bottled water.

Bring a change of shoes (and maybe clothes)!
I wore sneakers to the show, which was great for the cold, foggy morning. When the fog suddenly burned off and the temp spiked, I switched to sandals. At 6pm the breeze grew stronger and the weather cooled, and I put my suddenly chilled feet back into sandals. It also lessons the inevitable ache in your feet from standing for so many hours to switch up your shoes.

I also brought a light jacket and a heavier one, and was thankful for both. And mishaps do happen: a customer spilled coffee right in front of our table, and while it didn't get on the merchandise, it did get on stuff we had stored under the table. Be prepared for people (maybe even you) to spill, and bring a change of clothes.

Be prepared for children and animals!
These little creatures want to mess with your displays (one toddler took a necklace and ran off, and Tyler had to run him down). Keep a close eye out for them. Try find a way to secure your displays and merchandise to protect them. We're going to put our tables on PVC pipe risers so it's harder for little creatures to get to them.

Children and animals seem especially attracted to our merchandise because it's shiny and sparkly. Our neighbor sold notecards and said she never had a problem with little creatures.

That's all I can think of now. Hope my experience helps someone out!