Handmade Collective in Costa Rica

My husband and I just went to Costa Rica on an adventurous eco-tourism honeymoon! Inspired by City by the Sea Ceramics‘ blog entry about her and her husband’s anniversary tradition , I was hoping to find something memorable during our honeymoon trip as well.

During our visit to Monteverde, an area known for its Cloud Forest Reserve, I read that a great place to pick up souvenirs was at CASEM which is filled with products all made by local artisans.  CASEM stands for “Committee of Aristans of Santa Elena and Monteverde.”  It was started in 1982 by a group of 8 local women – and now it has grown to 94 artisans, 3 of which are men.  The goal of CASEM is “to enhance the economic and social well-being of local women artists” and their community.


Monteverde & Santa Elena Reserves are famous as a wildlife reserve with 100s of species of mammals, 400 species of birds, 2,500 species of plants and tens of thousands of insect species!  So you can imagine why so much of their artwork are of various flora and fauna of the region.

During our visit we were so lucky to catch a glimpse of the elusive Resplendent Quitzal! Unfortunately, my photo does not do this gorgeous bird justice!

But because of that rare sighting – we definitely wanted a fun memento of this bird in what we pick out for a souvenir as well!

These magnets are all made out of leather and hand-painted.  Definitely was excited to get the Quetzal one to spice up our new bare refrigerator!

I also love to collect Christmas ornaments – ideally one a year symbolizing a special place or memory from that year.  So you can imagine how excited I was to find this adorable felted Quetzal ornament!  It will be sure to stand out in our tree this year!

Portland’s Saturday Market

I just recently returned from a short trip to Portland, Oregon.  Nestled within a state known for its natural scenery, Portland is a funky city that has been ranked as one of the “greenest” cities in the USA.   Not only does Portland seem to be environmentally conscious, but there seems to be very strong support for local businesses and an expanding and thriving handmade community!

During my visit, I had the opportunity to check out their famous Portland Saturday Market – and it was quite a site to behold!  The sheer number of handmade artisans was already awe-inspiring and to see how well-attended it was, so very exciting to see!


It wouldnt be Portland without some tie-dye!

Some neat signs made out of saws

impressive ideas for lawn ornaments

You can even buy some gourmet catnip here!

I just love how colorful this booth was

very cool wooden sculptures

These were only a small sample of the 250+ vendors that were there!  Definitely worth checking out!


Shop Local!

With the holiday shopping season in full swing, shopping malls are packed with massive crow, dsand for those who support handmade and local artists, there are also plenty of exciting holiday craft shows and markets coming up and Boston Handmade’s Downtown Crossing Gallery too!   However, for those who want to avoid the crowds and still want to support handmade by shopping from the comforts of their own home – there is still yet another option!   Etsy’s “Shop local” function!

Its very easy to do, just go to Etsy’s homepage, then click on the tab on the left hand side called “shop local” and then you can just enter your town or state and it will find some of the Etsy shops closest to you!  This way you can feel good about supporting local artists and buying unique handmade gifts, and rest at ease that you can get your items sooner in the mail too!

Boston Handmade Downtown Gallery!

Boston Handmade - Downtown Gallery - Poster

Come shop handmade and support local artists by doing your holiday shopping at Boston Handmade‘s own gallery store in Boston’s Downtown Crossing district!  Here are the details:

~ NOVEMBER 27 – DECEMBER 24, 2009 ~
“Boston Handmade Downtown Gallery”
Wednesdays – Sundays
11am – 7pm
505 Washington St.
Boston, MA
Downtown Crossing

Boston Handmade - Downtown Gallery - store

Come find something for everybody!  Photography, notecards, pottery, baby clothing, children’s toys, fine jewelry, and more!

BH Gallery closeup

MaJenta Designs will also be selling her glass pendants, keychain bottle openers, pocket mirrors, magnets, and portable purse hooks, and more!

purse hooks - variety mix

BH outside

MaJenta Designs at Boston’s Bazaar Bizarre

 

MaJenta Designs has the exciting opportunity to sell her wares at the most hyped show of the year, Boston’s Bazaar Bizarre!  Here are the details:

~ DECEMBER 6, 2009 (Sunday) ~
BCA Cyclorama
539 Tremont St.
Boston, MA
12 – 7pm
$1 Admission
http://www.bazaarbizarre.org/boston.html


A few hours in Rockport

“A Few Hours in Rockport”

by Jennifer Tang of MaJenta Designs

IMG_4796

IMG_4774On a sunny autumn Friday, my fiancee and I decided to take advantage of the nice weather and go on a mini-trip. Having only heard great things about the North Shore, we decided to go explore Rockport for a few hours.

IMG_4780

Its such a cute little town, similar to other New England coastal towns, with plenty of art boutiques to explore and peruse. I love checking out all the unique creations and the local scenery-inspired paintings too!

Somerville’s Rock N Roll Yard Sale!

I’ll be doing one of my favorite shows from last year again this year, the exciting “Somerville Rock & Roll Yard Sale“!  Its fun, rocking good time! Its a great time to enjoy independent art, handcrafted items by local artists, and of course awesome live bands & other performances.  There will be alot of awesome music-related items for sale, as well as music being swapped (CDs, records, etc.), and just fun handmade goodies such as my MaJenta Designs items will be there too! 🙂  Should be a blast, hope to see you there!  I’ll be the booth with the fun Asian-inspired jewelry, purse hooks, mirrors, and other gifts!

DETAILS

August 1, 2009 (Saturday)

3 – 7pm

Union Square (intersection of Somerville Ave, Washington St., & Prospect St)

Somerville, MA

FREE admissions

yard sale poster