Rad Gifts for Dad!

Comment

Rad Gifts for Dad!

Totally wicked.

It’s that time of year again. Get ready to bust out those dad jokes because, Sunday June 18th, 2017 is Father’s Day. Still looking for that thoughtful, foolproof, sure to make your dad go aww gift? Handmade and local is the way to go. You’ll get your dad a gift that is all those things and more and you get to support a small business at the same time. You go Human! Check out some of these rad vendors for all your rad dad’s day needs.

For the timeless rad dad, there is The Exquisite Corpse Boutique. ExCB offers one of a kind time pieces, rings, pendants, accessories and more. All of the pieces are made from several different materials so you won’t have a problem finding something for the rad dad in your life. Or you can be safe and grab a gift card and let your dad pick out his own dope piece to add to his collection. The ExCB can complete custom orders if you want a personal gift you know your dad would love. Check out their website here.

 

Screen Shot 2017-06-15 at 6.44.09 AM.png

For the never want to grow up rad dad, there is ReGeeked. ReGeeked is a shop that upcycles old comic book pages into dope one of a kind wallets and accessories that your rad dad’s inner nerd will thank you for. Have a comic book you know dad loves? Well, ReGeeked does custom orders and every piece is handcrafted. Now they can carry a piece of their childhood with them and look cool doing it. Check out their website here.

Screen Shot 2017-06-15 at 6.40.22 AM.png

For the comfy rad dad with the rad dad bod there is The Social Dept. Akron’s very own Social Dept. is a t-shirt company with some of the most comfortable shirts I have ever felt. To top off that softness, they also have some out of this world designs. Whether the rad dad in your life is a foodie, a sports fan, craft beer enthusiast or pop culture junkie the Social Dept. will have the perfect gift for them and you can get a matching shirt for yourself. I don’t love matching comfortability. Said no one. Ever. Check out their website here.

 

Screen Shot 2017-06-15 at 6.45.08 AM.png

 

For the environmentally conscious rad dad, there is The Robot Consortium. Wood Plane & Simple is a woodworking shop that repurposes hardwood from shipping pallets that would otherwise be living a sad lonely life in a landfill. These one of a kind groovy pieces will brighten up any office desk or collection of dope things and save the planet in the meantime. My personal favorite is the Frankenstein Robot. Check out their website for more.

 

Screen Shot 2017-06-15 at 6.49.38 AM.png

This is just a spotlight on a few vendors, but you really can’t go wrong when you’re supporting a local small business this father’s day. Your rad dad, your kind heart and your community will thank you for making the divine choice of shopping small and shopping local!

Still not quite sure? Buy Dad a ticket to the Second Annual Akron Ale Fest! Tickets on sale here.

No matter how you decide to celebrate, we at Crafty Mart want to say thanks to all our rad dads! 

Comment

Shopper Story: Julian Curet

Comment

Shopper Story: Julian Curet

THIS IS ANOTHER IN A SERIES OF SHOPPER STORIES IN WHICH CRAFTY MARTERS SHARE THEIR ADVENTURES AND FUN FINDS AT ONE OF OUR MARKETS.

HERE IS JULIAN'S STORY FROM HIS VISIT TO THE CRAFTS AND DRAFTS AT THIRSTY DOG!

Name: Julian Curet

Profession: Student and Musician

About me: I am a husband, father, student, and musician. I balance my time between family life, being a full-time English and anthropology double major at the University of Akron, interning at Crafty Mart, and playing guitar and singing for Overboard. Clearly, I’m a little busy but I still try to carve out some time for movies, television, video games, and hanging out with my wife (and children)!

Crafts and Drafts was my first ever Crafty Mart event! The pairing of a craft show with Thirsty Dog Brewing Company made the fun and interesting event even better. My wife and I were greeted outside by Crafty Mart’s Brit and Marissa who were counting attendance and helping customers. Inside, we toured Thirsty Dog’s production center and perused the handmade wares while sipping on our blood orange pale ales.

I was also there to help work the Crafty Mart merchandise table for a couple of hours but before I had a chance to clock in, an ewok caught my eye from across the room. Immediately, I walked over to The Snow Store table featuring crocheted characters of different sizes and genres. Samantha, the maker of all the very cool plush figures, greeted me as I paid for the little ewok. I knew full well that my children would be jealous of my find (and they are).

Next, I was pulled towards the ReGeeked table. ReGeeked is all about wallet and accessories. Daena makes them out of real comic book pages, both vintage and contemporary! They are laminated and made to last.

I didn’t snag a wallet this time but I have my eye on a Spider Man or Iron Man wallet. Hopefully, ReGeeked will be at the next Crafty Mart event. Can I get that wallet on a chain like the good ole grunge days?

Now it was time to get to work. However, it’s not really work when you get to dance, greet people, see all the talent of the artisan and crafters, and eat some pretty yummy tacos.

Fun oldies poured into the warehouse as my wife and I scarfed down tacos from the Smash Time food truck. There were so many awesome ingredients that went together so well that I can’t remember exactly what I ate, but I do know that it was heavenly.

Eventually, I was relieved of duty by Crafty Mart intern, Liz, and my wife and I made our way downstairs. This was my favorite part of the day.

I met vendors, Linda and Dave Lackey, and had some great conversations. They are both retired English professors spending time on their artisan skills. Linda makes custom stitched home goods like fun aprons. Dave makes guitars!

At his booth, I was in my element as I tried out some of his unique guitar designs while playing through a small amp. I even got to jam with Dave when he joined my blues riff with his harmonica. One of these days, I will order a custom guitar designed with the cover of one of my favorite albums. I look forward to seeing Dave and Linda again.

A Crafty Mart pop-up market is personal and hands-on. Not only do shoppers get to feel and touch what is being sold but they have a chance to meet the artists and learn their individual stories.

Crafts and Drafts was a fun and fulfilling experience I hope to repeat again. For now, this is your friendly neighborhood intern signing off! I’ll see you at another Crafty Mart event!

 

Did you miss out on Crafts & Drafts? Save the date for September 16th when we'll return to Thirsty Dog Brewing Company!

Thanks for sharing your story, Julian!

Check out our other Shopper Stories here!

Are you interested in sharing your shopper story on the Crafty Mart blog? Email us at craftymart@gmail.com with the words "Shopper Story" in the subject line!

Comment

Crafty Mart Named Finalist for Artplace America’s 2017 National Creative Placemaking Fund to Create Retail Incubator Space for Makers

1 Comment

Crafty Mart Named Finalist for Artplace America’s 2017 National Creative Placemaking Fund to Create Retail Incubator Space for Makers

Extremely competitive national grant program will consider 70 projects

Today, Crafty Mart was named among the 70 finalists for ArtPlace America’s National Creative Placemaking Fund. ArtPlace selected these proposals from 987 applications, making our project to create a retail incubator space one of just 7% of the projects across the country to make this cut.

ArtPlace’s National Creative Placemaking Fund is a highly competitive national program, receiving 987 applications this year. Investing money in communities across the country in which artists, arts organizations, and arts and culture activity help drive community development change across 10 sectors of community planning and development: agriculture and food; economic development; education and youth; environment and energy; health; housing; immigration; public safety; transportation; or workforce development.

Two projects from Akron were chosen as finalists. If either project is named a winner, it would be the first time that a project in Akron is awarded the prestigious and highly competitive grant since its conception in 2011.

CAN I GET A #WHYNOTAKRON?!

The challenge identified in our proposal is that there are too many empty storefronts downtown, and not enough opportunity for creative entrepreneurs to activate those space. With the help of the city and county administration, we're hoping to secure a building downtown with 2-3 storefronts that will serve as a launchpad for creatives to open a brick and mortar retail store.

Illustration by Gregory J. Peterson

Illustration by Gregory J. Peterson

“When clustered together, customer facing retail spaces promote walkability, activate connecting public spaces and make cities better places to live and work, which will help Akron attract and retain the next generation of young leaders,” says Executive Director Brit Charek, “We already see clusters of small businesses popping up downtown over the past few years. We’d like to build on that momentum.”

The City of Akron has admitted to having a problem fighting off the epidemic of the shrinking Rust Belt City with the population in steady decline, and released a report titled Planning to Grow Akron where they outlined a strategy not just to stop the decline in population but to increase the population size, which is why both the Mayor of Akron and the County Executive have endorsed Crafty Mart’s plan.

In addition to solving the problem of empty storefronts downtown, Crafty Mart is excited to provide opportunities to the artists and makers they work with regularly.

“We want to create a pathway for the makers who pop up sporadically at events like Crafty Mart to eventually land in their own brick and mortar storefront,” says Charek.

“But we won’t just hand anyone the keys,” says Director of Education Marissa McClellan. “There will be an application process, and the makers chosen will go through a fellowship program with a custom curriculum and mentorship aspect. We want them to take this opportunity to grow their business, get a head start on sustainability, and gain the skills to be successful in their own storefront, as well as have access to resources when things get tough.”

Check out our original video pitch! 

Thanks Tim Fitzwater for your video magic! ✨

“The National Grants Program is actively building a portfolio that reflects the full breadth of our country’s arts and cultural sector, as well as the community planning and development field,” said ArtPlace’s Director of National Grantmaking F. Javier Torres. “Knowing that these projects, and the hundreds of others who applied, are using arts and culture strategies to make the communities across this country healthier and stronger is inspirational.”

“We believe that these projects, when added to our tremendously strong portfolio of demonstration projects, will inspire, equip and connect members of the arts and culture field, the community planning and development field and those who are working to make healthy and equitable communities creatively across the country,” said ArtPlace America Executive Director Jamie Bennett.

After a strenuous application process this summer, winners for the National Creative Placemaking Fund will be announced in December. We'll be on pins and needles until then!

The complete list of the 2017 applicants for ArtPlace’s National Creative Placemaking Fund may be found here.

1 Comment

Shopper Story: Selah Ashe

Comment

Shopper Story: Selah Ashe

THIS IS ANOTHER IN A SERIES OF SHOPPER STORIES IN WHICH CRAFTY MARTERS SHARE THEIR ADVENTURES AND FUN FINDS AT ONE OF OUR MARKETS.

HERE IS SELAH'S STORY FROM HER VISIT TO THE CRAFTS AND DRAFTS AT THIRSTY DOG!

Age: 23

Profession: Patient Service Representative, Crafty Mart Marketing Intern, Small Business Owner

When I first got to the pop up shop at Thirsty Dog, I was so grateful that the weather was cooperating (for once) but I was also thrilled to see some of the vendors that had not been at the last event.

My first stop was the Regeeked table. There I found so many cool wallets and accessories that were stitched and made from repurposed comic books! My inner nerd fell in love with all her products but I was particularly intrigued by her immense button assortment. It literally took me about 7 minutes to make a final decision. I decided to go with a Powerpuff Girls and an Adventure time button. I’m sad to say that my Adventure Time button fell off my jacket and into the abyss. :( However, I believe that was the universe working its magic so I would return to this wonderful shop and purchase more of her amazing one-of-a-kind items!

I also stopped at The Bom truffles table. I had the chance to taste so many delicious alcohol-infused truffles. I also learned about their truffle making parties which I might just have to invest in. Who knew blackberry wine paired so well with dark chocolate?!

After going through all the vendors, I worked up an appetite and stopped by the Smash Time Food truck. There I picked up some Rockefeller Frites which were to die for! They were made fresh and hot and they were so good, I almost burned my taste buds off but trust me when I say it was totally worth the burn!  

With the pop up shop at Thirsty Dog being my second Crafty Mart event to date, I must say I am honestly impressed with everything they do to show love to small business owners and the makers of this great state we live in. I am so proud to be apart of something so magical and I’m sure all of or vendors would say the same! I’m oh-so-excited to volunteer for the next event!

Did you miss out on Crafts & Drafts? Save the date for September 16th when we'll return to Thirsty Dog Brewing Company!

Thanks for sharing your story, Selah!

Check out our other Shopper Stories here!

Are you interested in sharing your shopper story on the Crafty Mart blog? Email us at craftymart@gmail.com with the words "Shopper Story" in the subject line!

Comment

Shopper Story: Sarah Gott

Comment

Shopper Story: Sarah Gott

This is another in a series of Shopper Stories in which Crafty Marters share their adventures and fun finds at one of our Markets.

Here is Sarah's story from her visit to The Mom & Pop Shoppe!

Name:  Sarah Gott Profession:  Art Educator & Freelance Artist

Name:  Sarah Gott

Profession:  Art Educator & Freelance Artist

Ahhh Crafty Mart on a gorgeous spring day! Meeting up with friends and going downtown to peruse handmade treasures!

I’m a creature of habit so I always go see what delectable delights Diana from Sugar Bomb Confections has to offer first!

IMG_3295.JPG

I usually snag one her homemade red velvet marshmallows or one her amazing sea salted caramel macaroons but this time around I grabbed one of her smores bars. Not only is everything she makes absolutely delicious but her presentation of is always so pretty!

After chatting with Diana and exploring all the other amazing vendors at The Summit Art Space I made my way over to Musica where Perler Tricks instantly caught my eye!

As a fellow Art Educator I’ve spent many days ironing fuze bead creations. This guy has taken it to a whole other level!  The patience and time that goes into Brians work is stunning! Not to mention they are so fun and clever! I mean… Yoda earrings, or a pair of Batman and Joker Magnets for the fridge!! You just  can’t pass this stuff up!

Then all of a sudden out of the corner of my eye I glanced upon a wondrous emporium of furry monsters, snails, mice and one fierce unicorn!

Clara  from C. M. Manfredi’s Emporium of Wonders has literally created her own world of fascinating creatures, I love that she was kind enough to let me pick up and hold all of them. These soft little cuties are made from Polymer clay and the attention to detail is unbelievable

There really is something magical about Crafty Mart and how it brings so many people together! I can’t wait to check Crafty Mart at Howe Meadows on June 24th.  Hope to see you there!

Thanks for sharing your story, Sarah! You can follow Sarah's adventures on Instagram at @rah_rah_rowdy. 

Check out our other Shopper Stories here!

Are you interested in sharing your shopper story on the Crafty Mart blog? Email us at craftymart@gmail.com with the words "Shopper Story" in the subject line!

Comment