We are very excited to have guest instructor Lisa Taglia at our studio to teach a mending class inspired by Japanese boro. A generic translation of boro means "too good to waste", and dates back to the nineteenth century and into the twentieth when the Japanese rural poor only had access to homespun cloth made from hemp and flax, and also limited to only a few colors of dye, indigo, grey, brown and black. Said farmers would be involved in planting, taking care of, and harvesting the planets that would then be turned into fibers for fabric, and dyes. There were no trips to the store to get new clothes for the kids when the weather turned cold, you imagine, every piece of fabric was very valuable, and used as clothes, until it could no longer be worn, then turned into futon covers and floor rugs and passed on through many generations. A stark difference to the disposable lifestyle we have become accustomed to today.
That said, bring in your favorite pair of jeans, a shirt, or whatever you've been meaning to mend, and Lisa will teach you how to mend it . This class is for all learning levels, and will be held on Earth Day, April 22nd from 9:00-12:00 pm. Keep your favorite clothes alive a few more years, it'll make you happy, and the earth happy too.
It’s nice to have something fun to look forward to when Old Man Winter has been an unwelcome guest for far too long. Yesterday I registered our family for the Milan Spoon Gathering in Milan MN. We are looking forward to this annual event in the midst of spring. A long weekend of sitting next to about 200 carvers of all different skill levels from all over the USA and from across the pond, is definitely something to look forward to. The spoon carving event happens May 31-June 2. We hope to see some of you local carvers over there this spring.
If you’d like to attend a spoon carving class to work on specific skills, you can make it s a five day affair. which is what I’m doing. I’ll be headed out a few days before my family to take a spoon carving class with Jane Mickelborough from Brittany, France. This is a wonderful opportunity to take class with a wildly talented woman, and my first course that is instructed by a woman, which also makes me very happy.... and a spoon carving class so close to home!
This past weekend we went to the American Swedish Institute to participate in the opening of Craft BOWL. The installation runs through April, and I highly recommend you go see it. Friday night there was a show with Jögge Sundqvist telling his story while making a shrink box. It was an amazing multi media show with music, images and carving! Jögge is a green wood carver and folk artist working in the “slöyd” craft tradition of Scandinavia. He is a skilled craftsman steeped in traditional methods as well as a thoughtful and innovative artist. A great show and a chance to talk to a lot of carvers and crafters in attendance we haven’t seen in a while. All in all an excellent night.
Hey! We just added a heart carving class for those of you who would like to dabble in carving, but don’t want to commit to carving a spoon. Think of this as an intro to your new favorite hobby. We know once you get a taste of green wood carving, you’ll want to come back for more. This class is one of our shorter classes and taught by Michele.
2017 was a big year for us. And we couldn't be more grateful. We moved our studio back into our building on Johnson St in NE Mpls in January and really started to focus on what we wanted to do with the space and our new business. A fresh start, a new year, a new/old studio and lots of ideas. We took every opportunity that came our way and just said "yes". And it really paid off.
In the spring we went to the Milan Spoon Gathering and met many new friends, and saw many familiar faces. Learning and watching carvers with many more years experience is always a treat. In early summer we were excited to be a part of a show at Light Grey Art Lab called THE NEW NORTH. Throughout the spring and summer we participated in various demonstrations at Ingebretsen's Nordic Marketplace and the American Swedish Institute showing folks how we carve our spoons. We taught spoon carving classes in our studio, at the Norway House and Ingebretsen's, we even had a guest instructor and met a Swedish carver who we've admired afar on Instagram in our new studio. Late fall and early winter we participated in many different pop up shops and long time craft sales. We were honored to be chosen for the 13th annual No Coast Craft - O - Rama sale, a big step for us to getting into the swing of this type of event.
And at the end of the year, we received notice that we were finalist to a contest we had entered with the Minneapolis St Paul Magazine "Made in North" contest. This has been the most exciting news we've ever gotten. Not only did we get a page of ink and some great photos in the magazine, but today Ali Kaplan, style editor for MSPMAG, talked about and showed off our spoons on local tv show, The Buzz . We were blushing with pride as we watched the piece..... what a year.
None of this could not have happened without the support of our family, friends and our local community. And for that we are forever grateful. Thank you everyone for your help and support. It means the world to us to be able to do what we love doing most, carving. 2018... we will keep saying "yes".
.Today we were excited to see our spoons in a photo for an article written by our friend Steve Hoffman for the Star Tribune titled Secret Ingredients in the Taste section. Mary Jo Hoffman (Steve's partner in crime) is the talented photographer who took the photos and used our spoons for the shoot. Steve and Mary Jo have been an inspiration to us for many years. They have somehow figured out how to keep "the art of creating" a part of their daily lives, and we've admired them for the discipline they have dedicated to it. (The photo of our spoons is only in the printed edition of the paper)
This evening we will celebrate the winter solstice and host a last minute shopping event. From 4-10:00pm swing by our studio to shop for jewelry, pottery, metal works, clothing,turned bowls, and carved spoonsfrom 8 local makers. In the back yard we will have a bonfire and warm beverages. We hope to see you tonight!!!
A friend and neighbor asked me if I could carve some small fish like the hearts I carve. She wants them as gifts to give her family as a memorial to her father who liked to fish and passed away earlier this year. What a sweet project to work on.
My favorite part of setting up our tree every year are the memories each ornament sparks as I find the perfect place to hang it. I hope these fish will bring fond memories to the family members who receive them.
Friday night we were at ŪMEI selling our spoons during their holiday sale, along with the other spaces in this newly renovated building Veronique Want Gallery and Spring Finn & Co. It was a relaxing fun evening and we met many new folks who make hand bags, felt craft totes, scarves,and apothecary in our community.
It’s “hump day” today! Which when you’re self employed just means there are only a couple days left before the weekend sales, better make a few more pieces QUICK! That said, we have another weekend full of sales.
Thursday Dec 7 is open studio at our place from 6-9:00pm, we will have spoons for sale and we will be carving more spoons. Friday evening Michele will be selling over at ŪMEI , There is a nice article about it in Midwest Living magazine. Saturday we will be selling at Tattersall Distillery holiday market Explore North from 12-5:00pm. Hey! It’s going to be a fun weekend! We hope to see you.