Such an exciting and enlightening endeavor to participate in my very first public art fair- and an honor to be chosen as one of 190+ makers in the very first Helena MADEfair! This event has been wildly successful in Missoula for the past seven years, this was the first Helena event and there was a great showing of makers and shoppers!
This being my first serious selling fair I had everything to do. Business cards, a booth, packaging, signage, point of sale, not to mention INVENTORY! The list was long but I managed to tackle everything in time.
Many many thanks to my husband who was incredibly helpful evey step of the way, my booth builders, maker friends who offered great advice and support, my yarn and feather hunter and gatherers, and my close gal pals who helped me run the show!
I didn’t sell as much as I had hoped, but gained good exposure, met some fun folks, got to chat with friends who stopped by- and learned a lot lot lot about the dynamics and psychology of participating in that kind of event. I’m looking forward to future maker fair events!
As opportunities often lead into others, such was the case with the MADEfair- my number one question was regarding online sales:::
Regardless, I’ve impressed myself with my production of this show, some really fun pieces came out of it- and my skills are on fire! Heres some pics of my booth and a few of my favorite works made for this show!
Helena’s Fall Art Walk 2017 was a success! I entitled this dream catcher series, Spectrum, asdeveloping a strong color story was an essential inspiration to each piece. My main goal of the Spectrum series was to further explore the gradation technique I had just started playing with at the end of my last making season.
Prior to this show, I was gifted an abundance of feathers from locally harvested birds including pheasant, turkey and mallard. (Thank you Eli & Steph!) A natural next step was hand plucking the de-breasted birds, to use as much of the birds as possible. This was my first experience plucking birds, but the reward was entirely worth the mild (but enlightening) discomfort. The feathers have become a more essential part of most works, through lots of feedback, viewers tend to prefer works with striking feather showpieces.
This show was also an opportunity to improve my strongest weaving patterns. I selected 4 of my favorites and through repetition and improving my accuracy, I was able to push these original weavings further. This realization changed my making process to focus on one skill of my work per making session- for example completing 6 woven circles in one day- has created some awesome new and interesting weaves by learning from one piece and applying new knowledge to the next piece immediately.
I’m proud of what came together for this show: I was able to expand many skill sets that improve each dream catcher- the quality and content of my materials collection has improved greatly this year- and more time and space for making has been a major upgrade to my process.
Enjoy the Spectrum series, and look forward to a ton more dream catchers- as I have finally committed to this year’s Helena MADEfair! My very first makers fair- will be Saturday and Sunday, December 2nd and 3rd— 😬
This set of works has been commissioned or created with a specific recipent in mind. The art show at the brewery exceeded my expectations by generating a lot of clients looking for something more suited to their own space. By accepting the paid work I agreed to create within a predetermined size, color pallet and sometimes material, which was both challenging and inspiring to my resourseful and intuitive process.
I’ve been starting by asking clients to choose an adjective that they would like represnted by their Day Dreamer, some of my favorites have been: “color-like-wow” “tranquil” and “trouty.” Most of the new work has focused on playing with color trasitions in the yarn hanging which has required more yarn material- but is more enjoyable to compose. I was also focusing on refining the techniques for some of my favorite patterns in the circular weaving.
Color, like WOW For my friend -Chad
Something old, something new, something trouty for 2 For friends Liz and Matt
The golden ghost An artistic trade with the talented- Kelly
For an elegant, kind person Commissioned for my friend- Edee, feathers provided
A gift for my brother’s partner, Annie
Functional barder with hat-maker, Katie
Cave with pendant
A trade for an endless supply of locally harvested feathers, for Steph and Eli
I’ve been tip toeing around the retail venue, and enjoying the idea of new people and strangers loving my artwork enough to BUY IT- have it around them, as a part of their daily lives! Strangely exciting…. but I feel strongly about price points- and the required commission taken to sell in a store has been crippling my value gained from each piece. Solution, enjoy the amazing advantage I have working at a brewery with a fantastic, gallery- esque wall to show and sell my dream catchers on!
Thus, I signed on as a featured artist with Ten Mile Creek for the Fall Art Walk, 2016! This show was created in a hugely transitional time of my life- I feel the variety and experimental aspects are evident- with some strong ideas coming forward. This series is about playing, exploring the potential of building up the two main facets of each dream catcher: the weaving and the hanging.
I gained commissions from this show, a few of which requested replica pieces, which was an interesting challenge! The last couple pieces I made for the show I started doing a gradient technique with the yarn hanging which proved to be very successful, I plan to work with this technique much more in my future works.
I have attempted many forms of sellable art, but this seems to be the first real success. Absolutely inspired by Dream Catchers originating from many Indian tribes throughout North America, these circular weavings are created with the intention to add design and whimsy to home decor. No two are alike, but some specific design themes are emerging with the circular weavings.
Currently available at Frayed Sew in Helena, Montana.