Before I gave my talk at the Bellies to Babies Celebration I had a chance to wander around and see the exhibitors. I met the fabulous Karen Randall from New and Green Baby in person, and got a hug from Allison of Stylekid. I also came across some super-cool baby gear from Snugglings, and even bought one of their T-shirts for my new little nephew who is expected to arrive in July.
While I was chatting with one of the owners of Snugglings, she filled me in on a great event happening in Vancouver for the month of May. From May 1 – 30 a whole bunch of local designers are getting together to create Pop-Up Vancouver. They will have a temporary retail location at 1-4421 West 10th Avenue [map] where you can drop in and shop. I hear there will be loads to see, like baby and kids’ stuff, handbags, jewelry and art.
A handmade doll of Hannah’s made by a local mama
I love the idea of Pop-Up Vancouver. There is something really cool about having things that are designed and made right in your own back yard. There is something really cool about meeting people who are doing their thing and making their art. And there is something really cool about local designers coming together to support each other and work together. It makes me want to join hands and sing “Kum Ba Yah” because working together is how great things happen, even if it does sound a little schmaltzy. Just because your kindergarten teacher said it, doesn’t mean it isn’t true.
This sense of community and shared purpose is the same sort of thing you also see at local craft shows. My father was a goldsmith and so I attended a lot of craft fairs as a kid. They have a unique vibe that I love. Vancouver’s biggest, Got Craft?, is happening this Sunday May 2. One of my local bloggy friends, and regular blog commenter, PoMo Mama will be there with her creations. Sadly, I won’t be able to make it this year, but I’ve been before and it’s definitely one-of-a-kind. A random stranger commented on 9-month-old Jacob’s aura. Do you see that at Wal-Mart? No, you do not.
Photo credit – PoMo Mama on Flickr
A few years ago I didn’t know about all the ways to buy locally produced stuff from people who live where I do. My new awareness is at least partly due to the way that handmade and local is catching on. Etsy, anyone? But it’s also partly because I’m looking for it. It’s surprised me to see how many ways there are to buy things that don’t involve a trip to the mall. I love it, really.
How about you? Do you look for local or handmade when you’re buying things? Are you an Etsy fanatic? Tell me all about it!