Thursday, March 29, 2012

2012 Cool City Art Auction Recap

Posted by Crystal Pepperdine, Founder and Executive Director of Flint Handmade

Thank you SO MUCH to everyone who attended, volunteered at or donated handmade items to the 9th Annual Financial Plus Cool City Art Auction!

Flint Handmade raised over $1,000 to support our efforts to encourage creative expression and commerce through handcrafting in Downtown Flint!

We packed the front of The Lunch Studio with dozens of handmade goods for the auction!

It was great to see so many people enjoying our auction.

Bidding started at half the retail value, so there were some great bargains to be had.

We also offered "Buy It Now!" pricing to purchase items at the full retail price before any bids were placed.  Just like on eBay!

One of our first "Buy It Now!" purchasers was this lovely gal who was excited to "eBay it" to buy her notebook!

Another great score at the auction!

As usual, we had fantastic catering from The Lunch Studio.  Everyone was raving about the cream cheese dip!

People loved the music provided by DJ Pale Ale as well, who returned for his second Cool City Art Auction with Flint Handmade.

Robert (l) and Karasten were two of our awesome volunteers who got to enjoy the auction after their volunteer shift ended.  Special thanks to our other volunteers: Heidi, Ali, Toe, Danielle, Rudy, Angela and Russ!

We also want to specifically thank Sara from Heaven Sent Crafts and Amber from Handleber, who donated Scrabble crafts for our theme table this year.  :)

Finally, very special thanks to our location sponsors:

We hope to see you all again next year!

Interested in becoming a Flint Handmade location sponsor for the 2013 Cool City Art Auction?  
Click HERE for more information!

Care to read more about the 2012 Cool City Art Auction?
Visit The Flint Journal website from their article on the event.

Want to know more about past Cool City Art Auctions?
Check out our posts from 2011 and 2010!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Craft CSA: Announcing Featured Crafters! Seeking Bonus Crafters!

Posted by Crystal Pepperdine, Founder and Executive Director of Flint Handmade

We are very excited to announce the Featured Crafters for the FIRST EVER Flint Handmade Craft CSA!

Summer 2012 Craft CSA (May-September)
Featured Crafters

Dieshawn Holmes of Angelic Soaps and Gifts
Nayirrah Shariff of Crochet Science
Hayley Morris of Hayley's Paper Love
Heidi Seman of Madge and Gert
KC Khirfan of Papercrane Studios

Congratulations to our Featured Crafters!

We are also seeking Bonus Crafters!

In addition to the handmade item from our five Featured Crafters, we are also hoping highlight even more local crafters in our Craft CSA by including special Bonus Crafters!

If you live in Michigan and are interested in donating 10 small, handcrafted items to be included in the Craft CSA to help promote your business, please contact us at

We have space for 25 total Bonus Crafters to participate in this excellent promotional opportunity! 

So far, the following crafters have signed up to be Bonus Crafters:

Miranda of Ellie Belle Boutique
Steph of Frankenstitch Productions
Rebecca of Frozentree Creations
Amber of Handleber
Missy of MAH Hemp Jewelry & Accessories

As a Bonus Crafter, your first name, company name and email/website will be included on all print and electronic materials for the month of the subscription in which your bonus craft is enclosed.

We hope YOU will become a Craft CSA Bonus Crafter!

P.S. All of the 10 Craft CSA Subscriptions have already been claimed, but if you are interested in being added to the waiting list, please fill out the form HERE.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Advertising Opportunities in Our 5th Annual Spring Craft Market Program

Flint Handmade is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that encourages creative expression and commerce through handcrafting.

As a fundraising effort, we are selling advertising in the event program for our 5th Annual Spring Craft Market on May 5, 2012 from 10-4pm at the Masonic Temple in Downtown Flint.

We expect to have approximately 700 people in attendance and to transact over $14,000 in total sales at the event.

We hope that you are interested in promoting your business or organization to our shoppers and vendors!

CLICK HERE to download the Flint Handmade Program Advertising Form and Rates.

Vendors for the 2012 Spring Craft Market!


We are pleased to announce our vendors for the
5th Annual Spring Craft Market!

A Wee Bit Crafty
Gingerly Made
Pottery by Carie
Seamonster Swag
Simplybree & Mannymade
Studio 217 Squared

Flint Handmade will host the 5th Annual Spring Craft Market on Saturday, May 5, 2012 from 10am-4pm at The Masonic Temple in Downtown Flint!

The Spring Craft Market will feature a large variety of unique, modern handmade items such as original illustrations, screen-printed shirts for adults and kids, reconstructed jewelry, knit and crocheted goods, hand-poured candles, natural bath and beauty products, plush toys and much more from 45 vendors!

The first 25 shoppers of the day will receive free goodie bags filled with vendor coupons, merchandise, and other treats.

The Temple Dining Room inside The Masonic Temple will be open for sit-down and take-out lunches from 11am-3pm.

Admission is free for all. Donations welcome.

The Masonic Temple is located at 755 S. Saginaw Street in Downtown Flint, MI 48502.

Friday, May 4, 2012 from 6pm-8pm
New Members Welcome!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Second Saturday Giveaway: March Winners!

We want to thank everyone who commented on our March Second Saturday Giveaway featuring Amber of handleber!

The awesome commenters for March were Cheryl Lynn, TwistedDoxy, Sara Johnson, HayleysPaperLove, Chelle, Nicole Lewis, Bellma, Janel, K., Mary P, Dana L, Robert Voiles, Yasmin Ladha, Agata Piestrak, Christina, Karen,, April and Mary Barnes.

And now, the moment you have all been waiting for! The randomly selected winner of the Statement Necklace is...

 ...Agata Piestrak!!! Congratulations!

Amber was so generous...she gave us a second item for a SPECIAL BONUS GIVEAWAY! The randomly selected winner of the Hair Clip is...

...Mary P!!! Congratulations!

Agata and Mary, send us an email at and we will make arrangements for you to receive your items! You have 30 days to claim your prize. :)

We want to encourage everyone to participate in the next Second Saturday Giveaway to be posted April 14, 2012!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

St. Patrick's Day Volunteer Work Party

Join us at The Lunch Studio THIS SATURDAY (March 17th, 2012) from 11:30am to 2:30pm for a St. Patrick's Day Volunteer Work Party!

We need help preparing for upcoming events and initiatives like the Cool City Art Auction, Craft CSA, Spring Craft Market and Craft City at Buckham Alley Fest.

Volunteer tasks may include folding brochures, stamping our Knuckles logo on bags, making small goodie bag items, cutting flyers, etc.

We are specifically inviting people who have volunteered with us since 2011, but all are welcome!

The Lunch Studio will be open for business and each volunteer will receive one free beverage courtesy of Flint Handmade.
We hope to see you there! :)
P.S. If you can, please RSVP on our Facebook Event Invite.  Thank you!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

April 1st craftLAB at Buckham Gallery!

We're changing locations for our April craftLAB...and we promise this is not an April Fool's Joke!

The Lunch Studio is hosting a baby shower on April 1st, so we are taking craftLAB down the block and around the corner to Buckham Gallery!

Buckham Gallery
134 1/2 W. Second Street
Flint, MI 48502

Join us on Sunday, April 1, 2012 from noon-3pm at Buckham Gallery!

Our friend, Christa Irons of Ms. Christa's Rockin' Accessories, will show us how to transform a standard t-shirt into a scoop-neck shirt with cap sleeves! 


We are not adjusting the size of the shirt, just the neck, so bring your usual size.

We will also have Flint Handmade t-shirts available for $15, but the size selection is limited.

Sewing machines and all other supplies will be provided, but feel free to bring any of your own smaller supplies (including scissors, tailor's chalk, pins, etc.) if you would like to use them!

Donations will be collected to help cover the venue rental fee and we encourage everyone to bring a dish to pass since we will not be able to order food from The Lunch Studio. 

Beverages are being generously provided by Buckham Gallery.

NOTE: Buckham Gallery is located on the second floor of the building up a steep flight of stairs.  Unfortunately, it is not handicap accessible.  Please email us at if you need special accommodations and we will work with Buckham Gallery to provide assistance.

Flint Handmade hosts FREE craftLABs on the first Sunday of every month from noon-3pm at The Lunch Studio (usually!) in Downtown Flint. Come explore and express your creativity!

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Second Saturday Giveaway: Win an Necklace OR Hair Clip from Amber of handleber!

Posted by Crystal Pepperdine, Founder and Executive Director of Flint Handmade

For our March Second Saturday giveaway, we are featuring Amber of handleber!

This is Amber in her craftroom with her adorable cat, Champ.

I asked Amber to tell me about her workspace:

"I have a craft room upstairs where I keep all of my materials and items to sell organized. I spend part of my time working up there. Because this is not my primary income, I spend most of my time crafting on nights and weekends. As a result, I have been known to assemble and embroider several pieces whilst catching up with my DVR’d shows in the family room instead of the craft room."

Amber means it when she keeps her supplies and products organized!  She has fantastic containers for all of her goodies.

Finished necklaces go in the flower drawers on her desk.

Supplies go into organizers in the desk cubbies.

Projects-in-progess and craft fair supplies go into boxes in her EXPEDIT shelving from IKEA...a system beloved by many of our featured crafters.  :)

As I looked around, I realized that mustaches feature prominently in Amber's craft room decor as well as in her handleber  promotional materials, so I asked her how she came up with her company name:

"When I signed up for etsy I did not plan on beginning a business immediately. But I wanted a name that reflected me in case I decided to make something to sell. Handleber is related to my love of mustaches and name (Amber). My friends shortened my name to “Ber” a while back. The shop name seemed quirky and fitting."

Well, Amber's fun and quirky personality shines through in all of her work!

She even made her own red felt flower bridal bouquet for her wedding last year!  Behind her is a painting of one of her favorite uncles, who seems to kindly watch over the whole room.

Champ is also watched over in the craftroom while he a picture of a fellow feline wearing 3D glasses and eating popcorn!

With so many creative elements in her craftroom, I asked Amber how she got into crafting:

"I have always been interested in making things. When I was little I had a craft table in my parents’ basement where I would make holiday ornaments in July or friendship bracelets for friends. I puffy painted shoes and tie-dyed everything I could find.

When I was in college I made several of my presents because I did not have enough money to buy something for everyone in my extended family. I painted ornaments, crated candleholders, made button wreathes, and knit scarves.

My interest in making items out of felt has been fairly recent."

Her interest in felt may be recent, but Amber already has a great stash colorful rolled felt.

She even has catalog sheets of felt swatches!  I had a feeling I would know the answer, but I still had to ask about Amber's favorite craft tool/material:

"I am obsessed with wool felt.  However, my newest obsession is vintage brooches. I love the idea that there is an added history in the pieces I make. Vintage elements, buttons included, add a bit of drama to my work. The tough part is finding brooches that add a vintage feel without making my products too expensive.

A goal of mine is to create pieces that look luxurious, but can be affordable so everyone can rock handleber items."

And, to ensure perfectly shaped flowers for her luxurious accessories, Amber uses a Sizzix BIGkick machine in periwinkle with flower die cuts.

With so many different projects, I asked Amber what she listens to, thinks about or watches while she crafts:

"I generally watch movies when I craft. A few recent ones have been Young at Heart, Punch Drunk Love, The Royal Tenenbaums and There will be Blood. I also have a habit of watching some TV guilty pleasures, including Top Chef, Flipping Out, and reruns of 24.

When creating the arrangement of flowers I think of who might wear the product. I want to create items that will work well with simple clothes. I want the statement necklace to be the piece that makes a simple black dress or white tee look simultaneously luxurious and whimsical. Basically, if I won’t wear it I won’t sell it."

As we wrapped up the interview, I asked Amber what projects she would like to work on in the future:

"I picked up several cool fabric remnants at the Craft Swap at the Lunch Studio. I’d like to make some rosette statement necklaces out of that fabric.

I think it would be a nice idea to have lighter fabric necklaces for spring/summer events. I would also like to focus on more home items, starting with accent pillows."

Amber showed me her first accent pillow in progress...which she finished shortly after our interview and then posted on Etsy in honor of Make a Creative Leap Day!

Well, we hope you are inspired by Amber to make a creative leap of your own! 

And, perhaps you could make that leap adorned by one of the TWO prizes that Amber donated for the giveaway!

Prize 1 (Statement Necklace, pictured at bottom): "This mustard-colored trio of felt and fabric flowers showcases an amazing mustard fabric acquired by handleber at the latest Craft Suppy Swap! This necklace is on a simple brushed silver colored chain. The center flower showcases embroidered petals and a beautiful floral sparkly center. A fun statement piece for spring! Value $28."

Prize 2 (Hair Clip, pictured at top): "This mustard-colored flower duo with white buttons is adorable on both short and long hair. The flowers are attached to an alligator clip, which allows it to clip onto fashion scarves, cardigans, and purses. It is definitely a versatile piece for spring! Value $10."

For YOUR chance to win the necklace OR hair clip from Amber of handleber, just complete steps A and B:

A) Follow Flint Handmade via the blog, Twitter, Google Reader or whatever newfangled "following application" tickles your fancy. Or, if you don't do the whole following thing, email us at and we will add you to our email list.

B) Leave us a comment in response to this blog post by 5pm on Saturday, March 17, 2012 answering the following 2 questions:

1) How do you follow Flint Handmade?

2) Tell us which prize you would rather win (necklace or hair clip) AND where you would wear it if you won OR any ideas for other items Amber could make with felt flowers!

Please be sure to answer BOTH questions to qualify for the drawing.

The winner will be selected at random and posted on the blog within one week after the deadline. The winner will have 30 days to claim the prize.

We hope to hear from YOU and we hope you enjoyed our March Second Saturday Giveaway!

P.S. Be sure to visit the handleber website...which Amber wanted everyone to know was newly redesigned by the Flint Handmade's very own graphic designer, Yasmin Ladha! :)

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Tickets Now Available for Cool City Art Auction!

The 9th Annual Financial Plus Cool City Art Auction will be held on Friday, March 23, 2012 from 5pm to 10pm.

Six nonprofit arts organizations will be in various locations along Saginaw Street in Downtown Flint with hundreds of handmade goods in the silent auction.

Food, beverages and live entertainment will be available at all locations.

Tickets are $25 each in advance ($30 at the door) and grant access to all six locations.

Purchase your tickets at The Lunch Studio to benefit Flint Handmade!


Flint Handmade is still accepting location sponsors.  Click HERE for more information!

Want to know more about past Cool City Art Auctions?

Check out our posts from 2011 and 2010!

Yudu Screenprinting Demo Recap!

Posted by Crystal Pepperdine, Founder and Executive Director of Flint Handmade

We had a fantastic turnout for our Yudu Screenprinting Demo for National Craft Month!

The floors were being refinished in the front room of The Lunch Studio, so we all had to squeeze in the back room, but we made it work.  :)

Yummy red velvet and banana cupcakes from The Lunch Studio to celebrate March as National Craft Month!

We had TWO Yudus this time!  Mary B. (r) ran the Yudu with the Craft CSA screen.  Mary W. (l) brought two blue shirts for screenprinting.

I (not pictured) ran the Yudu with the Knuckles logo.  Jodi B. smiles with the shirt she made for her youngest daughter.

Jodi B. and her oldest daughter love the purple ink on the "safety green" shirt! 

Don't the girls look great in the Knuckles?!

Nicole is getting ready for spring with a Knuckles tank top. 

Mary ironed all of the shirts to set the ink and shows off an adorable lavender onesie with the Knuckles running longways up the front.

Susanna also wanted her Knuckles to run longways up the side of her hoodie.  Such a cute idea!

Jodi H.'s daughter chose a blue ink for her raspberry shirt.  Too cute!

Lorraine shows off her Craft CSA bag with multiple logos.  How creative!

Matt liked Lorraine's bag so much, he did the same design on his shirt!

At the end of the demo, Sarah got really creative and tried two ink colors in an alternating blue and purple on a scrap piece of fabric.  We think it turned out well and Sarah says she is going to make a pillow out of the fabric.  :)

Join us again on the first Sunday of March 2013 for our 3rd Annual Yudu Screenprinting Demo for National Craft Month!