I will say that my totally frustrating experience with yesterday's Urban Craft Uprising was 70% my fault and 30% their fault. I could not find the damn thing! Now, like I said, part of that was my fault. I mis-read the information on the home page and listened to what my Aunt said about the event taking place at the convention center. So, yesterday I learned that the Washington State Convention Center is not the same as the Seattle Center. I believed them to be one in the same because the Seattle Center claims to be in the heart of downtown. It is not. The Washington State Convention Center, however, is downtown.
So when I finally got back on the bus to return to way too close to where I had hopped on the bus to begin this adventure, the address the Urban Craft Uprising listed for the Seattle Center was, in fact, way friggin far from the Exhibition Hall where the event was taking place.
One thing about me that is key to understanding my frustration is that I hate getting lost. I really, really hate being lost. There are few everyday life things that upset me more than getting lost. About two weeks after I moved here Partner took me out to get me an iPhone so that I would no longer get lost in the city as it pained him to see me near tears each time it happened. Yesterday he was wonderful when I called completely flustered. He kept offering to come get me, but I was being stubborn and just wanted to find the damn Seattle Center Exhibition Hall already.
When I FINALLY arrived at the event, I was semi-glad I went to all the trouble of finding the place. For many years now I have admired the work of Rachel Austin, so it was a treat to meet her and see more of her pieces in person. A few years ago I purchased a small print of hers and I really love it. It manages to cheer me up each time I look at it in my office. Talking with her and learning more about her process and her work made me want to buy a print and an original painting of hers on the spot. Wisdom prevailed as I forced myself to remember that I was out holiday shopping for others and not myself. Plus, in figuring out how to make a life with someone I am not yet sure how Partner and I do art acquisitions. For now I figure a joint approach is the right one. Although, I may go to Rachel Austin's etsy site later on today and order a box of her holiday cards, for we are running low after our epic session of card writing this weekend.
While roaming the packed event space, I saw lots of great things, but I found myself most taken by the dolls handcrafted by Hasenpfeffer Incorporated. Truly, they are gorgeous, detailed, and impeccably crafted. Daniela upcycles a lot of textiles in making these. She said that she often takes apart old, ugly clothes from thrift stores because they have amazing fabric and uses those fabrics in the making of her dolls. Partner and I don't have kids and I don't know of anyone who has kids old enough to appreciate these toys. Still, I don't even know that I would given one to a kid because I want one for myself!!!
See, how can you not love those faces?!? In general I am a big fan of people who do have the sense to make multi-racial and ethnic dolls, but there is something far beyond that which draws me to Daniela's work. I find myself most drawn to what she calls "Binky Buddies" - something about the simple shape yet inviting details. For some of the Binky Buddies she even puts rattles in the heads to make them even more appealing for even the littlest of kids (who will not be getting any from me because I am soooo in love with their cuteness!)