Meet the Vendor: Maple XO

Who are you and what do you do?
MapleXO is a recycled skateboard jewelry and accessory company from Portland, Oregon. We give old, broken skateboards new lives in the form of finely finished hand-crafted products.

Find us here:
Website | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

What’s the latest thing you’ve been working on?
We’ve recently finished up our Magnetic North collection for Fall/Winter 2014. It is our most refined line yet, which sees an expansion upon the sophisticated side of our medium. We couldn’t be happier with how everything has come together, and it stands as our most cohesive and thoughtfully designed collection yet.

What is your favorite new product for 2014?
Our Nautilus Necklace, from the Magnetic North collection, is simultaneously bold and elegant. A recycled skateboard pendant with strong contours is accented by brass clasps and hangs delicate sterling silver snake chain. It captures the essence of the new line, while presenting a new, sophisticated side of recycled skateboard jewelry.

How far will you be traveling to come to UCU?
175 short miles north from Portland, Oregon.

What do you love most about craft show vending?
It’s so awesome to be a part of the excitement and creativity at craft shows. With all those brilliant ideas and talented craftspeople in one place at the same time, it’s impossible to not feel inspired! We simply love the opportunity to give more skateboards new lives, and these events give us the chance to do so.

Is this a full-time business for you?
MapleXO is a tight-knit crew of individuals who care immensely about what we do. Inevitably, we all find ourselves snagging discarded skateboards after a session at one of Portland’s many skateparks. Ideas and concepts for our craft are unfolding in our heads at any given moment, and we wouldn’t have it any other way. It’s safe to say that, for everyone involved, MapleXO is a full-time gig.

What do your customers love most about your product(s)?
No two pieces are the same, and we believe this one-of-a-kind quality of our products is something that our customers thoroughly appreciate. Having a product that is made with care and attention by a real person goes a long way in this world of disposability and mass-production. That our products are helping reduce the environmental footprint of skateboarding is an added bonus: I think we all want to help maintain and repair this planet in whatever way we can.

 

Meet the Vendor: Evelyn & Eleanor

Who are you and what do you do? image
My name is Amber Ronningen, and I have the pleasure of creating Evelyn & Eleanor. I live in (and love!) West Seattle, and feel so blessed to be surrounded by amazing community, stunning landscape, and a sense of strong creative encouragement.

What’s the latest thing you’ve been working on?:
Rompers! The light, easy feel of summer with a classic twist! Pulling from the every growing collection of vintage (read: crumbling paper) patterns in the studio, new pieces are appearing daily on the racks…beach rompers and silky rompers, playful pocketed skirts, and detailed dresses. The combination of colors and texture always inspires, and this season has brought many fun little pieces!

What was your first memory of making something?:
My sewing is a generational continuation. I remember sewing with my mother at a young age, wearing all handmade clothes, and visiting my grandmother, who also created and gave us clothing. My sewing desk now was designed and handmade by my grandfather, and I treasure the hand drawn set of plans that rests on top of the thread drawer. It is a privilege to continue the tradition!

That said, one of my first memories was making a drop waisted, two tiered, two colored 80’s dress (and yes, it was just that amazing!) when I was around 10. I HATED sewing and remember redoing sleeve stitches over, and over, breaking the machine, sobbing, and wondering why, oh why, couldn’t we just go to the mall?! It took years to come back to the craft, but after my daughter was born, I began creating tiny pieces for her, and found that those painful lessons of earlier had grown, and were able to drive and allow for the creativity of Evelyn & Eleanor today. I love seeing her wear pieces that I’ve made, and hope to pass thetraditions  along to her one day.

What is your favorite new product for 2014?:
There is a Venice inspired pleated skirt that is killing me! Crisp and fun, with a hint of European chic. So lovely!

Is this a full-time business for you?:
Not quite yet! Right now it is a balance with family life, church and community, and Evelyn & Eleanor.

Where do you see your business in 3 years?:
This is still a very new business, and I’d love to see a more established E&E line, and possibly being carried in a few boutique stores, particularly in the Seattle area. I strongly support the cycle of local creation, and local business, and being a part of the creative Seattle scene!

Meet the Vendor: Nightshade Botanicals

Who are you and what do you do?image
My name is Ginger Rivera and I am the owner and sole operator of Nightshade Botanicals. Nightshade Botanicals is a small batch artisan apothecary. I choose to work with natural essential oils in my products because they hold many benefits. Both aromatic and therapeutic to your body and mind. Every product is made thoughtfully by my hands in my home that was built in 1900. Surrounded by art, surrounded by antiques and surrounded by an endless amount of positive energy. My bath and beauty products are deeply inspired by our connection with nature and each other. Blending the old world traditions of botanical herbalism with modern alchemy to bring you luxurious products that pamper your body, mind and soul.

What was your first  memory of making something?:
My beloved sister introduced me to the world of essential oils. She is a huge inspiration to me as well as the other strong and beautiful women in my life. My first memory of making something was after my sister generously lent me her extensive collection of essential oils. How awesome is that? I was pretty overwhelmed at first. Working with essential oils is incredibly complex! So learning about how diverse each oil was, was pretty mind opening. I really enjoy experimenting with new blends and I have a huge appreciation for the multiple benefits of essential oils. My first experiments were dabbling into the world of perfumery. It is very exciting and there is an endless amount of possibilities.

What is your favorite new product for 2014?:
My favorite new product is my anointing salves! They are so cute and diverse. I currently have three available: Protection, Love Spell, and Futura. All my products have multiple purposes. The anointing salves can be used as a therapeutic salve for the body (hands, elbows, face, feet, lips, etc) can be used as a fragrance, And can be used for the magical purpose associated with the essential oils and botanicals. Each salve contains essential oils and botanicals associated with its name and intention. So they can be used to bring love, protection and good fortune by wearing it, placing it on a candle, object or love ones. They are absolutely lovely!!!

imageWhat do you love most about craft show vending?:
The most rewarding part of vending at a craft show, for me, is the personal connection you establish with your customer. I love meeting and talking with people. Everyone has a story. And when you are able to see your customer and interact with them personally, it makes what you do so much better! How often do you get that connection with a big company or store. We lose that connection with people when we stop supporting independent sellers. So it is so important that we continue to stay “connected” Some of my customers have become great friends!

How did you get started in your business?:
I was ready to make the leap into the world of self employment. I applaud the bravery of those who also take this leap. It’s scary, but so exciting and rewarding in the end! After my son was born and the time was right, I was ready to refocus on what I wanted to do. I didn’t want to go back to the corporate world. It didn’t fulfill me in any way. I did a bit of soul searching and Nightshade Botanicals was born. My decision to work with Botanicals and Essential Oils came very easily. This decision really stemmed from my upbringing. I grew up in a very healthy and artistic household. My father was an artist, my sister was an artist, and my mother started her own business. We lived our lives simply and healthily. My front yard was a landform along the shorelines of an open sea. And my backyard was a lush forest, rich with the smells and sounds of old growth trees. Being around this was, and is, truly magical. Because of these inspirations, I strive to incorporate that magic into my products.

Meet the Vendor: Catshy Crafts

ucu-giveawayGENERALWho are you and what do you do?
My name is Cathy Pascual, chief maker at Catshy Crafts. I make heartfelt hoop art, yarn wreaths and felt flowers that give you the warm and fuzzies! My pieces help you celebrate the special days and every day with handmade keepsakes for your home.

Catshy_HeyGirlHoopWhat’s the latest thing you’ve been working on?:
I’ve been working on a collection of hoop art with a black felt background and
a slightly more muted color palette than my usual bright and happy colorways. Mustard yellow, fern green, gold, ivory, muted pinks remind me of vintage bedsheets and thrifted teacups.

What is your favorite new product for 2014?:
My favorite new product for 2014 is my monogram initials hoop art custom-made to celebrate that special couple’s engagement, wedding or anniversary. Beautiful hand-sculpted felt flowers and hand-cut monograms in soft muted colors are appliqued onto a black wool-felt background.

What do you love most about craft show vending?:
I love that craft shows put my items (which are so touchable and cozy) in the hands of the customers. At craft shows, I get to see people’s visceral reaction to my work. I get a lot of joy from that one-on-one feedback – more than I
ever could from online sales. I also love the idea of creating a space or booth display that shows off my personality and brand. It’s like having my own craft boutique for a couple of days!

What’s something you’ve learned through running your business in the past FloralMonogram5x9-CatshyCrafts12 months?:
One surprising thing I’ve learned through running my business in the past 12 months has actually been life-altering. It is that my shyness and social anxiety do not have to hold me back. By focusing on my dream of having my own creative business, I’ve been able to push through some of these self-imposed obstacles. The crafting and artistic community is so welcoming and supportive – some of the nicest folks you’ll ever meet! I’ve found many friends and supporters whom I would never have found without running my business.

What’s your favorite item that you sell?:
My Hey Girl hoop art always gets a smile or chuckle and is one of my best sellers. I’d love to give away this hoop to one of the UCU blog readers!

 

- Enter the Giveaway Drawing! -

Giveaway Item :  Hey Girl hoop art. [Pictured above]

To enter this drawing, tell us about the girl you’d like to say “hey” to with this hoop art (even if it is yourself :)) Be sure to include your first name and email address so we can let our winners know where to pick up prizes at the UCU Summer Show.

 

Meet the Vendor: Isobell Designs

ucu-giveawayGENERALWho are you and what do you do?
Hi. We are Isobell Designs, a San Francisco Bay Area based handmade brand specializing in jewelery & fiber arts. Our lines focus on historical design and traditional metal smithing processes. Utilizing her background in Graphic Design and Photography, designer Melody Shirazi combines the past with the present in her approach to jewelry making- drawing inspiration from 1920’s American architecisobell_designs_ucuture and Art Deco design. You can find all our designs here: isobelldesigns.com

How far will you be traveling to come to UCU?:
We are traveling from San Francisco to Seattle & are over the moon to be sharing our work & exploring Seattle for the first time!!!

How did you get started in your business?:
Initially, I was attracted to jewelry more as a hobby than as a form of artistic expression but eventually it just took over. I love how it allows me to be wildly creative while turning my ideas and sketches into something tangible. Plus it meant I got to have the jewelry I wanted but couldn’t find anywhere! I quickly got hooked on the process, and I found it really exciting to make something and have it magically turned into wearable art; it feels almost alchemistic.

beaded_black2What’s something you’ve learned through running your business in the past 12 months?:
I’ve learned to embrace the natural imperfections.

What do your customers love most about your product(s)?:
I believe they love thence of the natural & the geometric in each of pieces.

- Enter the Giveaway Drawing! -

Giveaway Item : The Capitola Necklace in Black :: Vintage black, gold & ivory tube beads strung together like a row of eclectic beachfront homes. [See pictured above]

To enter this drawing, leave an enthusiastic comment below. Be sure to include your first name and email address so we can let our winners know where to pick up prizes at the UCU Summer Show.

Meet the Vendor: Frankie & Coco PDX

Who are you and what do you do?
We are Maya Mori and Sarah Stephens, the makers behind Frankie & Coco PDX, a small design studio in beautiful Portland, Oregon. We make beautiful bags, accessories, housewares and artisan infused finishing salts. We are inspired by color, texture, vintage details and organic elements. The merging of our two distinct styles always adds something unexpected to our designs. We do everything ourselves, from designing and producing, to packing and shipping. Check us out at frankieandcocopdx.com

maya-sarah-3 (1)What’s the latest thing you’ve been working on?:
We have been creating some great new bag styles…we are crazy for organizing and can’t wait to bring our new products to UCU in July! We have also been concocting new flavor combinations for our artisan infused finishing salts. Yum.

How far will you be traveling to come to UCU?:
We will be driving up from Portland, Oregon.

What do you love most about craft show vending?:
We absolutely love connecting with our customers, hearing their feedback and seeing their reactions in person. Each and every item is handmade by the two of us and it is truly special to actually meet the person who chooses it.

How did you get started in your business?:
We met while working for a non-profit that supports Japanese language immersion. Our business has evolved from a love of art & design, a passion for helping others and a great friendship.

Who’s your biggest fan?:P1130545
Our biggest fans our families. Maya’s husband, a fellow designer, created our logo and cooks amazing meals for us when we are super busy! All of our kids provide constant inspiration and are always willing to lend a hand in the studio.

What do your customers love most about your product(s)?:
I think our customers really love our creative use of color & pattern, mixed with functionality. We are mothers to 7 children collectively (Sarah has three and Maya has 4), ranging in age from 2 to 15 years! As parents, we want our products to reflect a simple, easy life.

Meet the Vendor: ViVO Spa

ucu-giveawayGENERAL

Who are you and what do you do?
My name is Christina Parker…. I am a wearer of many hats …. mom of three, wife, entrepreneur, and manicurist. Being a manicurist lead me to create ViVO Spa where we create handcrafted artisan hand & foot care for my clients and my service treatments when I couldn’t find Manicure-Salt-Soak-professional products that didn’t contain harmful filler ingredients. After such a great response from clients, I decided to take this show on the road and help clients outside of the salon find relief from dry cracked heels and overworked hands.

What is your favorite new product for 2014?
I am in love with how our Refresher Oils are performing for our clients and for our professional manicurist using it. It’s awesome how versatile it is…. being used as an instant hit of hydration, to a finishing cuticle oil after a relaxing manicure. Can’t get enough!

How far will you be traveling to come to UCU?:
We come from 5 hours away in the city of Eugene. We love the Willamette Valley and the Pacific NW. We are truly SONY DSCblessed to be in a region of the world that is so beautiful and creative. I also love the abundance of indie craft events that are supported so passionately.

What do you love most about craft show vending?:
I kinda love all aspects of craft shows. I love designing a booth, meeting so many new people, and being amongst so many creatives. The personal shopping element doesn’t hurt either.

Is this a full-time business for you?:
ViVO Spa is my full-time gig. My family moved back to the NW after a two+ year hiatus and my business had grown to a place where it needed more of my time, so I made the leap and love every minute of it! It has created such a personal balance I wonder what took me so long.

- Enter the Giveaway Drawing! -

We would like to do a giveaway of our Shea Foot Cream.

To enter this drawing, leave a comment below. Be sure to include your first name and email address so we can let our winners know where to pick up prizes at the UCU Summer Show.

Meet Our Sponsor: Texture Clothing

texture clothingteresa remple started this endeavor 13 years ago, by sewing and dyeing every item she sold. with a focus on the triple bottom line, texture creates figure flattering cuts using sustainably made fabrics. each item is lovingly made, deftly stitched, beautifully patterned in the Pacific Northwest. texture strives to make ‘clothing with a conscience’ by reusing and recycling, sending as little as possible to the landfill and creating jobs for locals.texture clothing

Learn More About Texture Clothing

Meet Our Sponsor: Car2Go

Car2Gocar2go is a groundbreaking mobility program redefining transportation in rapidly growing urban areas. It provides a fleet of free-floating, low-emission, self-service smart fortwo cars distributed all over the city. car2go vehicles can be accessed “on-demand” or reserved for up to 30 minutes in advance.

For “on-demand” access, members simply swipe their membership card against the vehicle’s windshield. Unlike traditional carsharing programs, car2go allows its members to use the vehicle for as long as they like, without committing to a specific return time or location.

They can finish the trip in any authorized parking space within the car2go business area.  Attractive “by-the-minute” rates include costs for fuel, insurance, parking and maintenance.

Learn More About Car2Go

Meet the Vendor: Irene Akio

ucu-giveawayGENERALWho are you and what do you do?
My name is Irene and I make greeting cards and prints from my artwork.

Any new exciting news you’d like to share with our readers?:vulture-card
This last winter, our family grew by one! My due date was right around the Urban Craft Uprising winter show, but the baby came a bit late, so I managed to make it down to do some of my own shopping. It is certainly a challenge juggling business and life and a new baby, but it is incredibly inspiring and joyful, as well…more than I ever could’ve imagined. It’ll be a few months yet, but I am excited for all the arts & crafts activities we can do together.

What was your first memory of making something?:
I have so many wonderful memories of crafting, including drawing, making key chains and doo-dads from gimp, and weaving on a loom. But one of my fondest and strongest memories is making my first dress from a pattern with my mom. She taught me and my brother to hand-sew when we were in early elementary school, and then introduced us to the sewing machine a couple of years later. This was the late 80s, so when we went looking for a pattern and cloth, I picked a hot pink satin dress with a single shoulder strap and a giant shoulder bow. We cut out the pieces and stitched it together and I wore it to the ballet at the Fox Theater in Detroit. As some people were in jeans and T-shirts, I think I must’ve stuck out in my hot pink, but I was so proud and strutted around the beautiful lobby in my swishy satin dress.

skull-cardWhat is your favorite new product for 2014?:
My favorite new product is my vulture card. I think I have a fondness for creatures that get a bad rap.

What do you love most about craft show vending?:
Currently, most of my business is wholesale, so I rarely get to meet my
 customers face-to-face. This is my favorite part about craft show vending – getting to chat with people! Sometimes this means learning about their arts & crafts interests or a different painting technique. Sometimes there’s a funny story about an encounter with a squirrel or another animal represented in my collection. I’ve been vending for a couple years now at Urban Craft Uprising, and I always meet such lovely and creative people!

- Enter the Giveaway Drawing! -

I’d be happy to give away a pack of 6 vulture cards. My website is http://www.ireneakio.com.

To enter this drawing, leave a comment below and tell us why you want it! Be sure to include your first name and email address so we can let our winners know where to pick up prizes at the UCU Summer Show.

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