27 March 2014

OOAK Spring 2014 & Why I'm the WORST

First, a note about why I'm the worst (and I am, folks: the absolute PITS):

Picture it: December, 2013. The One of a Kind Christmas Craft Show back in town for two weeks, jam-packed with fabulous artists, beautiful and unique products, and amazing gift ideas for the holiday season. Me, intrepid blogger, making the rounds, oohing and ahhing and generally admiring the merchandise, introducing myself and the Money Pit, snapping photos like crazy and MAKING PROMISES I FULLY INTENDED TO KEEP and then DIDN'T.

For the first time in the history of ever, I arrived home from the OOAK show, downloaded my photos onto my laptop... AND DECIDED I'D WRITE THE POST LATER. And as we all know, later - especially around the holidays - never happens. I didn't write the post. Daryn has long since thrown out all the business cards, and I'm intimidated by the prospect of trying to sort through the photos and guess about which shot belonged to which vendor. I'm wracked - actually wracked - with guilt, so much so that I considered not attending the media preview for the spring show, such is my shame.

Thus, I. AM. THE. WORST. And I'm sorry.

But in an attempt to redeem myself, I DID attend the opening day media preview, and I outlined the arc of my post IN ADVANCE (so I'd have a better, and more directed idea, of what I was looking for), and I downloaded the pics, edited them and wrote this post IMMEDIATELY upon arriving home. Acceptable restitution? Especially if I promise to write a OOAK Christmas Show better-late-than-never-(maybe) post? You decide.

But let's celebrate the show at hand, shall we?





(well, well, Radiant Orchid. So we meet again.)

We can agree my love for the OOAK shows is no big secret: you can read about it here and here and here if you disagree. It's love to the max: I {heart} OOAK times a bajillion. We're kind of a couple. A handmade-in-the-stars kind of couple. Maybe it's all the fairy lights and glitter and shiny things... I don't know. How can you explain love?

The One of a Kind Spring 2014 Show (#ooaks14, if you'd like to tweet and Facebook the crap out of it, and really: who doesn't?) was top notch this year; an embarrassment of creative riches. I have a boatload of must-visit artisans I want to share with you, which I've neatly divided into five individual categories (whoa! is that a little OCD coming to the forefront? maybe... there's much you don't know about me, people. much.)

Anyhoodle, let's cut the chitchat and jump right into the category that's closest to everybody's heart, the raison d'etre for events like these: MY WISH LIST. Do I need to spell it out for you? These are the things I want. Take note, family. I have a birthday coming up.

TRICIA O | BOOTH F-03


MISSY INDUSTRY | BOOTH P-26


ATELIER TREMA | BOOTH J-12


JACQUELINE POIRIER (resident artist at the Ritz Carlton, y'all) | BOOTH A-38


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All of it. Every last bit. Which makes me greedy but also very, very easy to buy for.

Also, this little lighting vignette at Missy Industry's booth caught my eye.



So gorgeous, right??! I know. I died.

One thing that OOAK always does amazingly right is market up-and-coming talents. I have my tried-and-true favourites, of course, but it's particularly exciting to hit up all the NEW ARTISTS to see what they're about. This season appears to be a banner one; I narrowed my top picks down to seven, but I could have easily doubled it and still not captured the full extent of awesomesauciness. But I won't blabber on about it... have a look for yourself.

MINI-LOOP | BOOTH O-25


SOPHIA SAUNDERS | BOOTH P-14


COLLEEN McCARTEN | BOOTH K-33


MILO & BEN | BOOTH N-20


HEN JEWELRY | BOOTH A-11


VERGER CHAMPETRE | BOOTH B-47


JACQUELINE POIRIER


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Honestly, so great.

I was also surprised - and delighted - to note how many Milton, Ontario (read: my 'hood!) artists were in attendance. Milton represent, yo!

ALL FIRED UP! | BOOTH H-50


AREN'T YOU FANCY! | BOOTH J-20 (O)


BUBBLEBAKER | BOOTH K-40


BRIANNA'S ARTWORK | BOOTH


MILO & BEN


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They're kind of awesome. You should check them out.

I think I'll stop here and save the final two categories - my fave booth design, and OOAK theme - for another post. Lets me spread the love over a few days and saves you guys from slogging through a 5,000-word post!

In the meantime, whether you're a veteran show-goer (I first spelled that "shower" and then "show-er" but it didn't feel right) or a newbie, get your butt out to OOAK this weekend!! And don't forget to bring your wallet. If you don't find at least one item that just needs to come home with you, I'll eat my hat.*

Thanks all around to the OOAK team for inviting me to the media preview: much appreciated! And apologies again for being the worst blogger ever. I'm fixing that. *Toot sweet*

*Kidding - my hats are filthy and that would be disgusting. Instead of "hat" let's say "Timbits" and then it's win-win.