Monday, July 12, 2010

Tales From the Trove - Haddonfield Fine Arts and Crafts Festival

Tee shirt purchased from SquidFire

Bracelet purchased from Whimsicology,

Pee Wee Herman-inspired Pocket Mirror purchased from Original Abbie,, by my sister and gifted to me.

Necklace purchased from Yin-Yin.

I knew that it would rain on Saturday. I'd been stalking all week, my apprehension increasing as the estimated precipitation jumped from 40% to 60%, and finally to 80% just a day before the Haddonfield Fine Arts & Crafts Festival. So it was with a resigned mood of that I watched water pour down from the sky and sluice off of tent roofs. Truth be told, it could've been worse. Only minimal raindrops sneaked through the creases in my tent, and there was no thunder or lightning (always a good thing when you're fenced in by a metal structure).
This show was kind of different than any I'd done previously. For one thing, the two hundred-plus vendor tents were set up right on the street (King's Highway) in the downtown district, an arrangement that required everyone to arrive before 7:00 a.m. to set up for the 11:00 a.m. show. As for the art, it ran the gamut from fine jewelry to hats to pottery to wall art; quite honestly, I'd never seen anything like it. This, my friends, was art with a capital A. It made me feel a tad bit sheepish about my luridly colored plastic jewelry and cartoonish totes.
Yet as always, The Tote Trove was something of a curiosity spot for the passers-by. Several browsers told me, "You can't walk by without smiling!" and "This is the most colorful booth ever!" In a way, this was what I came to accomplish, which made me smile.
The rain stopped somewhere around 2:00 p.m., which wasn't so terrible because the show ran until 8:00 p.m. My parents dropped by just before 7:00 p.m., even though I told them it was too far of a drive. They also bought a bunch of stuff, even though I told them not to.
It goes without saying that the bf went above and beyond. He dutifully awoke with me at 4:30 a.m. to load our rented U-Haul, assembled the tent upon our arrival, hung all of the totes, and assisted and engaged the customers. Although the tone of this blog coupled with my outlandish outfits may suggest otherwise, I'm kind of shy and not always comfortable talking to the public. The bf, on the other hand, is very charming, approachable, and friendly, and for this I'm eternally grateful.
EtsyNJ team leader Abbie of Original Abbie,, was two tents down from me. My sister, who was kind enough to hang out all day Sunday, bought one of Abbie's art blocks as well as a pocket mirror featuring a genie and the Pee Wee Herman reference "meka leka hi meka hiney-ho," which she gave to me. Hilarious. Of course, she also bought more than a few things from me. Oh, that family of mine.
I also had the pleasure of meeting Marisa of Purplicious,, who was also vending, and Stacey of Deepshade Creations,, who was shopping. It's always very interesting to meet fellow EtsyNJians in person. I don't often have the opportunity because most of the shows I do are in Atlantic County, by the beach, and most of the group members are located toward Philadelphia or North Jersey. On the flip side, I saw only one of the vendors I've come to know from my usual shows.

True to form, I couldn't help but do a little shopping of my own. I was especially glad to find Janet of Whimsicology,, in attendance. I purchased one of her polymer clay fruit barrettes at the Brigantine PTA show last year (I wear it often, as evidenced in my Photo Shoot Friday posts) and had been wondering where I could find more pieces. Having spotted her booth, I happily snagged a matching fruit-themed bracelet as well as the all-important business card. You know, for those future purchases. I also nabbed a colorful flower necklace from another polymer clay artist and a funky fruit tee shirt from an outfit called SquidFire. I must confess that I never bought anything at craft fairs before I became a vendor. But now I have an inside perspective, so if I see something I like, then I get it.
That's about it. Next stop Ocean City on Saturday.

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