Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Apply by Feb 3 - THIS Friday!

Alright, potential vendors - send in your applications asap for the next Artist Market!

We are taking applications until Friday, February 3rd.  All we need is:

Your Name
Phone Number
Email Address
City of Residence

Business Name
Link to Your Goods
or 3 Images of Your Work

Email to kristen@musicfarm.com - by Friday, Feb 3!  Entries will be reviewed and selected participants will be notified on Feb 10th.  Don't miss the chance to be a part of the next Lowcountry Artist Market.

Check out the FAQ section if you have questions.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Jewelry Shopping

One of the reasons I began thinking about creating the Lowcountry Artist Market occurred in the summer of 2009, when I was planning my wedding.  I was searching for jewelry for my bridesmaids on Etsy.com and ran across a few necklaces and earrings that would be perfect - from Mu-Yin Jewelry.  

Pussy Willow Branch
Turns out the artist, Mollie Chen, lives here in Charleston.  So we met at Barnes & Noble and I left with 4 pieces of perfect jewelry.  I realized then that there should be a place for such talented folks to sell locally.  And in June of 2010, I held the first Lowcountry Artist Market.  So thank you, Mollie.  

Mu-Yin has been seen at a couple of the Markets, but here's what she's been up to lately.  Her jewelry is perfect for weddings - or everyday use.  Upon posting this, I realized several pieces will be added to my "My Birthday/Our Anniversay/Christmas are coming up" pinterest page.  Happy online shopping:

Gardenia Blossom
Everyday Classic
Trinity Open Band
Mu-Yin Jewelry specializes in custom wire wrapped jewelry made with high quality colorful freshwater pearls and natural gemstones. All items are made to order to fit customers’ size, be it a ring, necklace, or bracelet. While Designer Mu-Yin Mollie Chen received professional training in various art areas including literature, fine art and classical music, her wire wrapping skills are completely self-taught. A huge fan of handcrafted jewelry herself, one of Mu-Yin’s goals is to provide the general public trendy and well-made handcrafted jewelry without the high price tag. Many designs are limited editions featuring rare colored freshwater pearls and natural gemstones collected by the designer from all over the world. 

Mu-Yin’s Designs are noted for their vibrant colors, often simple yet meticulous construction and the delicate balance between the wire and pearls/gemstones. They are girly, sweet, sexy and easy to wear. Mu-Yin’s Designs are never overwhelming — they are simply addictive as that chocolate which makes you want to have one after another!

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Two Peas in a Pod
Tiny Bow Rings
Hopefully Mu-Yin will be returning to one of the Lowcountry Artist Markets this year.  Although I personally may not be able to wait that long for the Tiny Bow rings!

Friday, January 27, 2012

Feature Friday: Artisan Graphic Tees

Meet Andy Natusch, one of Charleston's newest entrepreneurs.  Having just recently opened his own retail store, Andy was nice enough to squeeze in a little time to talk to us about his work. 

AM:  Tell me a little about Artisan Tees.

Andy:  I created Artisan Tees because I got tired of looking at all the bad quality, mass produced t-shirts from department stores and retail chains. I thought I could do better, so I opened my own store - Artisan Tees - at 47 Spring St. There you can find quality, limited edition, artist-made t-shirts, local art and vintage jewelery.

AM:  How long have you been designing?  And has it always been for tees?

Andy:  I've been designing t-shirts for over a year, but I've been painting for several years. People don't have the disposable income they used to have and selling paintings became more of a challenge - so I started making t-shirts. People will spend $15 on a t-shirt rather than $200 on a painting because a shirt has a use and is not just a luxury item like a painting is. 

AM:  Are you printing the tees in house? Or designing them and outsourcing prints?

Andy:  I hand screen print all the t-shirts at my home studio. Screen printing uses a good amount of water; I've got hoses running in and out and tend to make a lot of noise in there. My neighbors probably think I'm making meth.

AM:  Your shirts are all over the place - some for humor, some political.  Where do your ideas come from?  What inspires you?

Andy:  This is a hard question for any artist to answer... My ideas for the most part just come to me randomly. I could be washing some dishes, or walking on the beach... They just pop in my head, and then I usually tell a few people about the idea and pay close attention to their reaction. It doesn't really matter what kind of reaction I get as long as I get a strong one. They can really hate it and because of that I'll go ahead and print the shirt. One of my first design ideas I had my girlfriend really hated, but I made it anyways and it's been one of my top sellers.

AM:  You recently made a huge leap and opened a store on Spring St. What prompted this move? How's it going?

Andy:  I've only been living in Charleston for few months and started selling shirts at as many events as I could find, including church craft fairs where I was the only person under 65 in the whole place. Imagine someone selling shirts with the statue of liberty holding a gun to a bunch of old ladies. They were actually rather good customers and I did pretty good at those events. I realized that if those nice old ladies were buying my shirts, it was time for me to start looking for a storefront. Soon afterward, I met someone at an event who happened to have the perfect spot on Spring St. for me to open a store. Since opening up in December, things have worked out better than expected. We have a lot of art from different artists around Charleston, vintage jewelry as well as the t-shirts. We will be having new art coming in every month to keep things fresh, as well as art opening events for all the artists who showcase their work at Artisan Tees.

AM:  What's in store for Artisan tees?

Andy:  I plan to keep making new designs as well as using designs created by other artists in Charleston. I want to work with as many artist as I can. It will keep my designs fresh and help support those starving artist out there. I know how they feel, I was one for a very long time. You can expect a lot of art related events at Artisan Tees in the future. 

If you're interested in checking out Artisan Tees, TONIGHT is the night to go.  You can check out the opening for:

The Works of Stephanie Patton and Alexandria Baker 

When: Fri., Jan. 27, 6-9 p.m.
Phone: (843) 406-7904
Price: Free 
 Besides the work of the featured local artists, the opening will include live music, caricature drawings, face painting, and refreshments.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Pop Up Shop

Several of our past vendors will be participating in a pop up shop in a couple weeks.  Come support Seek Vintage, Lauren Amos Designs, and Taashki Handbags - and pick up some great art - at Michael Mitchell on Feb 11th. 

And of course, look for these vendors at the next Lowcountry Artist Market!

Friday, January 20, 2012

Friday Feature: Dodeline Design

I recently had a few minutes to chat with Sarah Reed, owner of Dodeline Design.  Sarah has been one of our vendors since the first Lowcountry Artist Market and it has been amazing to watch her company grow.  

AM:  Tell me a little about Dodeline Design.

Dodeline:  Dodeline Design is a small graphic design studio in Charleston, SC offering a wide range of graphics related products and services, including:

:: unique greeting cards & stationery products

:: wedding invitations, favors, etc.
:: web design/development
:: branding & print graphics
:: social media consultation

AM:  Creating catchy cards must require a lot of creative thinking.  What's your process?

Dodeline:  I usually start by drawing.  I always have a notebook around where I’ll doodle and try to work out my ideas on paper – it’s so much easier than a computer.  Then once I have a clearer idea of what I want / will work, I head to the computer and get started in Illustrator.

AM:  What inspires you?

Dodeline:  So many things! I get ideas all the time…if life were a cartoon, I would totally have lightbulbs switching on over my head rather frequently.  Interesting spaces, good food, great company, and quiet time in nature are all rich sources of inspiration.

AM:  Well, you clearly have a gift.  How long have you been designing?

Dodeline:  Hard to say! I was a designer before I knew it.  My mom gave me a scrapbook when I was 12 years old and I fell in love with laying out each page.  It was my creative outlet all the way through high school.  When I was struggling over what direction I wanted to take my college career in, I saw design listed on a pamphlet of majors, and another one of those lightbulbs went off.  It finally clicked that that was the thing I enjoyed the most, so it was my major from day one of college and I have never looked back.

AM:  What do you find yourself doing more - custom work or retail card design?

Dodeline:  On a day to day basis, I tend to do more custom work.  I don’t pressure myself with my retail lines – when I’m inspired, I work on it, and when I’m not, I don’t.  The hardest part about being a designer is having to be creative on command, so I think my retail line is stronger by giving myself freedom.  It is a collection of my best moments of inspiration.

AM:  So, you already have a great website, a successful Etsy page, placement in several retail stores.  What's next for Dodeline Design?

Dodeline:  Don’t I wish I knew!  In all seriousness, I have high hopes for this year to refine the foundation I laid in the previous year and a half – better packaging, more defined collections, and some new product launches.  Speaking of which, be on the lookout for the next big thing….hint: we’re heading to the wall!

AM:  I have a little bit of Valentine's Day fever right now.  You had a great Valentine’s Day package last year.  Is that happening again?

Dodeline:  Lowcountry Valentine was great fun last year!  It was a great partnership that I really enjoyed.  I was lucky enough to get married recently and between that and the ever growing business that Dodeline has become, Valentine’s Day snuck up on me too quickly to organize it again this year.  We do of course have the Valentine’s line of cards out, as well as a monthly free printable on my blog (Valentine’s cards for the classroom!).

You can pick up Sarah's cards at these great stores.  And hopefully see her at the Spring Lowcountry Artist Market!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Cereal Party Success!

So about half way through planning our September 2009 wedding, I had the realization that a brunch wedding was the way to go.  Venues would be less expensive, everyone loves brunch food, and you'd save a good deal on alcohol since you'd only need mimosas and bloody marys.  We were too far into our planning to pull it off.  I'm not complaining - I loved how our wedding turned out.  But since then, I've been determined to have a brunch party.

My 30th birthday turned into the perfect opportunity.  I hinted to my husband for probably the better part of a six month period as to what I would love to do.  A self proclaimed cereal connoisseur, I hoped for a cereal bar and cereal inspired treats.

Well, here's how he (we) pulled it off! 

Rice Krispies Treats - but instead of rice krispies, we used Peanut Butter Cap'n Crunch, Cinnamon Toast Crunch, and Lucky Charms.  Ridiculously good.  

I made the dessert stands with some plates and glasses from Goodwill and some spray paint.  See the tutorial here.  Quick tip though - you can't put food on spray painted items, so be sure to buy doilies.  I had to go with wax paper instead.

Thanks to my talented brother in law and husband, there were also mini quiches and monte cristo sandwiches.  Sausage balls, pigs in a blanket and a cereal bar filled the rest of the spread.  Oh!  And Krispy Kreme donut bread pudding.  Yes, you read that right - donut bread pudding.  It disappeared before I was able to snap a picture.

Side note:  I cannot express how EXCITED adults were to be able to wear PJs to a party.

And the grand finale - crepe cake.  My brother in law made this 20-some layer chocolate crepe cake with Nutella filling and candied hazelnuts on top.  Ridiculously time consuming, but quite impressive.

Proof that theme parties aren't just for kids!  Just sets the bar pretty high for my 31st ... better start brainstorming now.  In the meantime, check out my Pinterest page with other DIY projects and party planning ideas!  And keep checking the blog for Lowcountry Artist Market info.  I hope to have an official March date this week!

Monday, January 16, 2012

Valentine's Day

A few weeks ago I ran across the image below and resolved to entertain more often - and more awesome.  So I've been daydreaming about how to expand upon this Valentine's Day dinner party idea.  Here's some of my inspiration:

These cupcakes look impressive and do-able - my favorite kind of cooking!

Valentine's Jelly Pop

Valentine's Day S'more Pop
 So many sweet options to choose from!

Valentine's S'more Bite
If you want to skip the photo garland for something more colorful (and maybe easier), paper or felt work wonders.

A little late night walk with hot chocolate ...


 Don't forget a little Valentine's Day welcome:

And finally, this is the best Valentine's Day card for kids I think I've ever seen.  I'll have to remember this for a few years from now ...