Craft Fairs, Art Shows, Festivals and Sidewalk Sales Are Coming! Are your ready?

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Photo source: Unsplash.com

Attention Crafters, artists and artisans: Craft Fairs, Festivals, Art Shows, Bazaars and Sidewalk Sales Are Coming! Are your ready?

Spring is around the corner (really, it is) and this means it’s time to rejuvenate your look for 2017. You’ve sewn, painted, knitted, crocheted, beaded, sculpted all your beautifully handcrafted items throughout the long and cold winter months for the seasonal fairs and you feel that you are all set to go. But are you really? With so many people vying for attention and sales at craft fairs and festivals these days, now more than ever, it’s crucial to stand out from the crowd.

Signs, promotional cards, banners and posters can help you gain more attention and more sales

Don’t get lost in the sea of table tops this year. Your artistry, talent and craft are on display and you need to attract and keep eyeballs (and wallets) at your table for as long as possible.

You cannot afford to overlook your look in 2017 – Claim it

If you are in the midst of preparing for the craft fair and festival circuit this summer, let me help you boost your promotion strategy and bring your craft and talent the attention it deserves.

Contact me and we can make your idea happen!

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Take note: creative services on offer

If you don’t look good, we don’t look good. – Vidal Sassoon, 1976

Shout out to South-Shore business owners! With over 15 years of graphic design experience (see my portfolio page) , I can help you look good. Really good!

Whether you need a new snazzy business card or a service card (like mine below) for your business or even a poster to enhance your shop window or craft show table, I’m your gal!

Depending on the scope of the project, I can offer clients a flat rate or hourly rates. Just drop me a line here  and let me know what you need.

My aim is to provide a turnkey graphic design shop for my clients, so get in touch with me and we can discuss your project and best of all, we will make it happen!

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This is an image of my what my card will look like and yes, I cannot wait to receive them. Local shops and businesses on the South-Shore take note: you may be seeing this beauty in your post box very soon (if you’re lucky)!

 

 

Boho accessory scarf for change of season

Over the last two weeks I’ve been doing some exploring with my crochet work. With Spring soon coming, I know that bundling up is going to be less of a priority and I need to adapt to that seasonal change. ** Hard to believe but it won’t be this cold for much longer (fingers crossed).

Scarves as accessories are something which interest me because as someone who loves the look of chunky yarn crochet, I’d like to wear my creations well into the Spring without the threat of overheating.

1000x1000In my first experiment I used Schoeller und Stahl Pebble – Mahagoni. Unfortunately, it’s no longer available. I have that uncanny luck!

I loved the colour combination of rusty red, orange, green and creams throughout this unevenly spun and felted yarn. It was a total pleasure to work with and I so regret not purchasing more when I had the chance.

The idea for this accessory scarf was to play with the organic quality of the yarn as well as use it’s informal patchwork of colouring in a free-form crochet fashion. This allowed me to also experiment with the interplay between random increases and decreases throughout the length of this scarf. The “wibbly wobbly” quality of this long (like really long – 124 inches) scarf is very bohemian and carefree. At it’s widest, the scarf is about 2 inches and about 1 inch at it’s narrowest. The addition of mismatched crocheted flowers adds to its boho charm.

I now need to find this style of yarn in a cotton blend which would also do well in the Summer time. Accessory scarves are worth exploring and I will do so in the coming weeks.

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Wibbly Wobbly accessory scarf – patchwork colours with flowers

It’s all about texture and layers

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An exploration in intuitive painting, texture, collage and various media have led me to this recent piece.

The contrasting textures I achieved in the base layer were created by working with molding paste then adding multiple layers of acrylic paint colours. The handmade paper collage sits well on top of this highly textured background.

The use of marker (black and coloured) as well as white pen allows the flower and vase to rise to the surface. I also love the delicate shake-y illustrative quality of the white outline.

More exploration in this style is the plan. Thanks for reading this.

Textured Winter Flower Bandana

My experimentation with this super bulky waffley stitch is a success!

Behold my super cute Winter Flower Bandana!

Best of all, most of my friends who think that they don’t suit hats were super amazed that it looked so great on them too. Happiness overload 🙂

Let me know if this a of interest to you and we can certainly customise it to your taste.

Here’s a picture of me modeling it.

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Jumbo chunky cowl for a gem of a client

This jumbo chunky cowl is for my lovely gem of a client! I cannot wait to get it to her later this week.

It’s made with the puff stitch using Lion Brand Thick & Quick yarn in the Eggplant colorway and it’s all done with my very favourite new 15mm hook from Clover. I decided to tassel-join the ends rather than seam them. It makes it as unique as the client jumbo cowl it’s for.

Want to customise a cowl of your very own too? Drop me a line here. Let’s see what we can come up with together!

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Flowers and Metal

This is a piece I completed this week. I used metallic acrylic paints and I accentuated the colour blocks with ink linework.

I did not use a canvas but rather a sheet from a mixed-media paper block from Papier Canal Papers (a machine-made paper company located in Montreal) which I purchased from DeSerres a few weeks ago.

The unusual format of the paper block was what I was attracted to first and then to its one rough edge. It’s unframed right now but that could change over the next few weeks.

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a little dabble in some fabric design

My latest design has been uploaded to Spoonflower as of this morning. It’s called peas and onions. I am excited to see my three designs in real life. Coming soon!

Once I receive my sample proofs, I will officially start selling them. I can’t wait!

In the meantime, you can take a look at them on the Spoonflower site directly by clicking on any of these three images.

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peas and onions by josyan mcgregor

rings and things
rings and things by josyan mcgregor

quand le soleil
quand le soleil by josyan mcgregor

three pillow covers in three days

So on Wednesday morning this week, I decided to throw myself head first into a sewing project which would teach me to be more patient and double-check my work before sewing. Yep, I learned the hard way that there’s no such thing as a Command-Z in the sewing-world.

Wednesday, November 23

I had completed a quilt top (a small one) a few weeks ago and so I figured I could make a pillow cover. First things first, I had to make my quilt sandwich and then figure out how to hook up my walking foot and then attempt to “quilt” my mini-quilt. Wow! One bent needle and a few hours later (darn walking foot!), I finally managed to correctly hook up my walking foot to my sewing machine and then I went ahead with the quilting. Nothing fancy – straight lines and a couple of diagonal stitches.

I then proceeded to make the two section panel backing for the pillow (it’s an envelope style).

It went well, or so I thought. Much to my dismay, I sewed one of the back covers panels wrong side up. Oh well. Live and learn.

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Thursday, November 24

On Thursday, I decided to try again. This time, I had no completed quilt top but I did have lots of heavier weight fabric which my Mum had given me which could do the job.

Super keen to get stuck in, I was cutting and measuring and cutting and measuring by 8 am. I decided to use two different fabrics for the back cover panels (about equal weight of course). I even went as far a making my own accented binding for the panel which would be featured on the outside of the pillow cover.

After creating a simple folded over edge for the panel which would not be visible on the back, I began pinning my pillow together. Sewing the four sides went well and I was super excited to see my final pillow. Oh and I remembered to cut my corners before turning over so that they would be nice and crisp.

Result: Oh no! Well, I didn’t double check (okay triple check) before sewing and so assembled my back cover panels in the wrong order. (Sad trombone)

This means my beautiful and neatly done accented binding panel is basically hidden behind my not-so-fancy panel. My sewing on that panel is still clean but I was devastated that I had made this mistake. Plus I used white thread so it’s so obvious now. ACK!

P.S. The front is awesome though 😉

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Friday, November 24

This morning, I was determined to do the best job of the week (third time’s a charm, right?). I got an early start and set up space before the third attempt. I measured and cut and made 100% certain that my edges, panels and patterns were all in the correct order and all good to go before the final sewing.

The result! Ureka! I did it!

I even used a fancy stitch for the accent binding. 

I wonder what the next week’s project will be?

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modern quilting, graphic design, podcasts and a new life path

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My absolute first quilt top with fabric I had available. Negative space, as far as I am concerned, can be anything you want.

I have fallen in total love with modern quilting – there I wrote it. Prior to this and to my own embarrassment, I was a quilt snob. I certainly appreciated their place in fabric and textile history but in no way did  I consider this traditional form of craft in my design or aesthetic vocabulary.

After all, I am a lover of colourful graphic patterns and scandinavian design. I love Marimekko’s bold flowers and simple lines. I drool at thought of Charles and Ray Eames’ body of work. I have watched Helvetica and Objectify many more times than I care to admit. I am fascinated by architecture, specifically Brutalist Architecture! There was no way that quilting fit within all that. I mean, right?

Some background

A few months back, I was an avid tech podcast listener and had been since 2002, but I was looking for something new. I was simply burned out on technology.

Something more… me

I am in my late forties, I am at the stage in my life where I need something that will re-ignite and inspire me to get back on the right path. I want to rejuvenate the next part of my own creative journey.

Enter Sandi

One day on my commute to work, I simply searched for two keywords: creative and podcast, and there it appeared. I listened to my first Crafty Planner Podcast on Google Play Music and was instantly hooked and the rest, as they say, is history. I would literally never be the same again.

Through Sandi Hazelwood’s Crafty Planner Podcasts, I have been introduced to quilters / makers / artists like Jacquie Gering, Heather Jones, Frank Palmer, Libs Elliott, Karen McTavish; fabric designers like Tula Pink, Heather Ross, Amy Butler and finally, sewists / designers like Cal Patch and Annabel Wrigley and much much more.

The world of modern quilting was totally new to me and I loved it. It awakened the sleeping artist inside of me. As a research maniac, I could not get enough of the images and creative vision I was seeing. The endless possibilities that this medium can open is mind-blowing. I can now see how architecture could be interpreted through modern quilting and textile art. There you have it, I have finally found a way to combine my love of architecture, graphic design, fine art, textile art, fibre arts, bold colours, line art, simple patterns, negative space exploration and conceptual art.

Over the last 3-4 months, I have listened with enormous focus and intent and I have laughed and openly wept at my many “ah ha” moments while listening to Sandi’s sensitive, honest and intelligent conversation-style interviews.

The other important reason I am writing this post today is because I’d like to thank Sandi. I’d like to let her know, that she has played a huge part in my soul search and my ultimate reconnection.

As a graphic designer, I have had many opportunities to create but in the end, I have realised that my style of “creation” is definitely more hands-on. Creating texture will now be my focus.

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This was an improv piece (zesty pi) with colours I love. The flowery pattern fabric is from a 70’s bed sheet which I have held on to for years. I have lots but I am being super selective as to when I use it.

It’s been a turbulent but enlightening couple of months for me personally, professionally and creatively and I now find myself with the time to develop my thoughts and my art.

I am promising myself a long and thoughtful meander along a largely unknown path filled with new hope and energy. Let’s see where it leads.