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Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Paper Tiger Cards

We love Paper Tiger Cards and are certain you will too. Check it out!

Paper Tiger Cards

Paper Tiger Cards unofficially came together in the summer of 2007 as an outlet for bad jokes I'd had running through my mind that finally made it out into card form. After watching people hand the cards to their friends and watching them laugh, I wanted to make more things that people could share with each other and smile about, so soon there were tea towels and, eventually, puppets.

I try my best to work with green materials, like buying my cardstock from eco-centric companies like French Paper, and get my rovings and other felting supplies from Wisconsin, and when possible I try to pass on what I know to people who seem interested.  I taught myself most of my felting process by making the things that I would like to see, but now I enjoy making things that other people cook up.

Paper Tiger Cards infuses so much personality in her felted creations, pick one up and you won't want to put it down! They make great gifts for all ages! You'll also love her finely crafted, amusing Gocco printed cards and hand embroidered tea towels. 

Monday, December 13, 2010

Craftbelly, Paper Parasol Press, Redux Fashions & Reuse First

Time for another round of vendor profiles! We'll kick this one off with Craftbelly decoupage picture frames.
Craftbelly Picture Frames

Craftbelly grew out of my obsession with handmade papers made around the world. The papers I use are usually either screen-printed or hand-painted, and I find beauty in the imperfections that each sheet carries. I decoupage them onto wooden frames and give them several coats of sealer to make it seem like they are painted right on. (I only wish I could paint like that!) For me, the joy of creating each frame starts with the repeated, almost mundane process of adhering the paper to the wood, where I get to use my hands and perfect my craft. But even though the process is the same for each one, I always get excited all over again when I finish a frame and take a good look at it. The joy continues when someone else gets excited about it too! I think they are an easy and funky way to add personality to your favorite photos and to your home.

We adore Craftbelly picture frames! Colorful, fun and a piece of art all on their own! These skillfully crafted pieces make a perfect gift for anyone who loves color and texture or needs a cheerful splash of color in their home.

Paper Parasol Press

Paper Parasol Press is an independent letterpress shop in Chicago - just a bike ride away from our home on scenic Ravenswood Avenue. The name coming from "parasolka" meaning umbrella in Polish and "parapluie" in French. I wanted to use a word similar to my backgrounds, being a first generation American, and Parasol seemed the right fit! All cards are individually printed by hand on a vintage Vandercook Universal I or a Chandler and Price New Series Press. yeah, she's a big girl, weighing in at a ton. We're old school like. At Paper Parasol we use paper and envelops that are 30-100% post consumer recycled.

Here at Paper Parasol Press we feel old fashioned acts of writing make for the best correspondence. Now, go write your heart out!

We love Paper Parasol's beautifully designed letterpressed cards and prints.  The cards are beautiful enough to put right in a frame and hang on the wall! We're sure you'll enjoy these cards and prints and might have a hard time letting them go! It's okay, just buy "one for you and one for me" style!

Redux Fashions

My work is made from all recycled materials.  I like to use everything from table cloths to t-shirts to school uniforms.  The majority of my work is tote bags with a fun, rock n' roll and nostalgia vibe.  I'm mostly inspired by the culture I grew up with in the 70's and 80's and the fanaticism I had for my "idols".  Also very inspiring to me is thrift stores, hence why I get all my fabric there.  I just love a place where you never know what amazing and unique stuff you are going to find! Truly inspiring!

We love that Redux Fashions reuses fabric for their funky bags! Surely you know someone who just can't get enough Prince or Joan Jett in their lives!

Reuse First

We collect cast off paper scraps from local printers and binders and reuse them in hand-bound journals/sketchbooks and greeting cards. All imagery is hand silkscreened onto the covers and backs of the cards and books. We also collect bottled from local bars that either don't recycle or choose to donate to us. We reuse the empty bottles by cutting them down and turning them into planters, funnels, change jars etc.  We also etch images and words onto some bottles.

Reuse First was born out of our strong distaste for today's throw-away society. Living in a big city where recycling is more of a joke than a way of life, we feel it is even more important to show people what we can create from every day waste. Our goal is to get people thinking and acting more resourcefully and responsibly.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

AD LOVE, Simply Keen, Diffraction Fiber

It's time for round three of our vendor profiles! Today we'll start of with Ad Love's hand silk-screeened apparel.


AD LOVE is Angel's Hand Screen Printed Clothing Designs. Her Designs are all unique to her, and the screen print process is done by hand. Sometimes she will embelish designs with paint splatters, or sewing. Angel is a Chicago based Freelance Illustrator and Designer. Loving life and living her dream, Angel has a unique sense of style and a wide range of skills from drawing to painting, digital art, graphic design, playing and composing music, hand screen printing, book making, sewing, photography, crocheting, cookie making, and some other random skills. She combines her fine art skills with her digital artwork to create beautiful, unique and exotic environments of work.

"I love fine arts and fashion, nature and the city. I always have a million ideas, and so i have to get them out somehow and that is by my artwork! I love what i do, 50% screenprinting, 50% graphic design. It makes me happy! I love my customers, i am inspired by good, honest, caring, and people with a passion for life."

AD LOVE apparel is comfortable and elegant. Great for those who love a crisp artistic look but don't want to sacrifice comfort.

Simply Keen

The Simply Keen line consists of original-design rings, earrings, and necklaces, all of
which are designed with three words in mind: modern, young, and simple. All of my
jewelry is hand-crafted by me. I like to make a variety of designs, each of which is very
limited in number, so each item is special. Simply Keen is created from a mix of natural
stones, cut glass beads, and gold- or sliver-plated findings.

I started the Simply Keen line because I couldn’t find jewelry that I liked in the store.
I could envision what I wanted, but I couldn’t find it. So I decided to create a line of
jewelry that was modern, young, and simple. I wanted to create pieces that would
compliment any outfit, in a simple, chic way.

We love the Simply Keen line of jewelry. Elegant and affordable pieces that are sure to delight!

Diffraction Fiber

Pillows with personality! Made from 100% Recycled Plastic Bottles.

Why do you do your craft?
"Something about idle hands? No. Wait. Because I love to sew, and I love to make people smile. And really, how many people can say they do that for a living?"

Diffraction Fiber pillows are expertly crafted with fun and love! A wonderful gift for yourself OR a friend if you can bear to give them away!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Cheesecake Handmade Beauty, Laura George and Purpleandlime

It's time for round two of our vendor profiles! We'll kick this one off with Cheesecake Handmade Beauty's delightfully handmade bath and body products.

Cheesecake Handmade Beauty

Cheesecake Handmade Beauty™ is an all natural, environmentally friendly, handmade bath and body product company. Our product lines are intended to appeal to the environmentally conscious, animal lovers, and all who enjoy cute, good smelling stuff! They are designed to be affordable, without sacrificing quality, and natural, without sacrificing the rock 'n’ roll, pin-up inspired aesthetic that we love so much!

Their soaps smell good enough to eat and we adore their witty package designs! We love that they use tons of essential oils and NO harsh chemicals. Give the gift of delectably scented cleanliness this year! They have something for everyone!


Laura George Art & Illustration

Laura Berger is an self-taught artist and illustrator based in Chicago, Illinois.
Working primarily with gouache, acrylic, and ink, her art is currently centered around dreamlike lands, surreal characters, and smatterings of pattern.  Illustrative in nature, her work is inspired by the idea of finding novelty in everyday life, and the adventure in opening up to unlikely companions and fantastic situations.

We love Laura's work, it's fresh and looks great all sizes. We're sure you'll find a piece that's perfect for someone you love!


My line is fun and colorful.  The sewn pouches are made from
eco-friendly recycled-bottle felt and non-toxic glue.  Jewelry
includes laser-cut states and animal shapes, jeweled plastic cats on
chunky chain, and Swarovski crystals combined with various metals.
Other plastic animal jewelry is made from my own childhood toys that
I've repurposed and reused.  I also make scarves and mittens out of
fleece and fake fur.

Purpleandlime is an expression of my love of fashion and art.  I am
very much inspired by exotic wildlife and unique cultures of the
world, along with familiar and comforting themes like junk food and
childhood treasures.  My jewelry and accessories are humorous and
playful- designed to make the wearer feel happier and more confident.

We find Purpleandlime's work to be fun, colorful and practical. Her items are well made and you can see the love and wit that goes into making them!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Grinderman Coffee & Substance Designs

We are pleased to bring you the first round of the Indie Arts Holiday Market vendor profiles! Let's start with Grinderman, a local fair trade independent coffee roaster.

Grinderman Coffee & Resistance Coffee
www.grindermancoffee.com (you can purchase delivery and ship from the site)

Grinderman Coffee roasts and bicycle delivers fair trade coffees from around the world. By drinking Grinderman coffee you directly support the farmers that grow the coffee, the roasting of the coffee, and the Grinderman who delivers your coffee.

Grinderman Coffee roasts and delivers coffee to connect people to the world their coffee comes from.

We got the chance to see the Grinderman in action roasting two sets of beans and we walked out with 6 pounds of his delicious coffee. It makes a wonderful gift to all coffee lovers and it's a gift you can feel good about giving! It's available in full or half pounds.

Substance Designs

Each piece of jewelry is designed and created by my hands... great consideration is given to the materials, textures, colors, and the way light reflects or passes through each, and the source of the components. The jewelry is sometime vintage, sometimes reclaimed, and sometimes new, but always created with the idea that great jewelry made around environmentally-friendly practices doesn't have to be a splurge.  I purchase locally whenever possible, support products made in the USA, and love to scour second hand stores in search of broken pieces that can be reincarnated.

Substance Designs is on a mission to embrace better ways to make jewelry, better ways to do business, and better ways to live life.

The goals are simple: reclaim, repurpose, renew, and respect.

We love the mission and goals of Substance Design and are proud to present her beautiful jewelry at this years holiday market!

Monday, December 6, 2010

Promo Materials are Available!

After many hours of hard work, we've created the imagery for this year's holiday market. Each poster is hand silk-screened with love! We hope you all enjoy it! If you work at a place that might like to display a poster or would like to promote it on your blog, please contact us at reusefirst{at}gmail{dot}com

Keep your eyes peeled for our next posts with brief vendor profiles and a sneak peak at their work!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Indie Arts Holiday Market is a go!

Hooray! The Indie Arts Holiday Market will take place December 18th at Schubas Tavern, 3159 N Southport from 11am-7pm

Come get your last minute shopping done and maybe even shop for yourself! This year there will be around 15 local vendors selling their handmade wares. Keep an eye out on the blog for a sneak peek at each vendor, there will be lots of new faces this year! Get ready for another great market!