Kim, Betsy, and I wrapped up the West Coast portion of our Make Your Voice Heard tri-author book tour on Tuesday night. I’ve been resting, repacking, and recalibrating every since. It was my intention to write about Portland, Seattle, and Vancouver separately but we didn’t have many moments of rest in the last two cities – that, and I have to say that my head is bursting with new project ideas…so many new ideas, no time right now to execute any of them …

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We began our trip in PDX with the classic Portland Airport shoe-fie photo. Guess who is who?

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We had a number of gracious hosts in Portland – including Kari, Isaac, and Shana (who so willingly put two strangers up in her house!). After an evening of hanging out and eating at the newest food cart pod Tidbit Food Farm and Garden, we had a jam-packed ay of events. Isaac and Maker’s Nation hosted our workshop Make, Mend and Reflect at an amazing co-working space called Tillamook Station as part of Portland Design Week. As part of the workshop, we all made ugly creatures under Kim’s guidance. Guess which one is mine?

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Ugly creatures group shot! View on Instagram

Lisa Walker England, one of the workshop participants, wrote a blog post on the workshop (thanks for the mention Lisa!) and something I said during the writing/story-telling session even made it onto a Portland Design Week Flag! Betsy followed with a calming session of stitching, mediating, and reflecting.

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Pics from Make, Mend, Reflect Workshop at Tillamook Station in Portland. #latergram

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After Tillamook Station, there was a quick stop for drinks with some friends in the design field, and then it was off to Powell’s City of Books for a panel hosted by designer/illustrator Kate Bingaman-Burt. Yes, we did kind of geek out about being at Powell’s. The staff was really nice, not only did they give us a room to chill out in, they even let us sign their visiting author book. We felt very official.

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Our panel at Powells tonight. #latergram

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I go to Portland at least once a year, but I have to say that this trip was really incredible – Design Week had a exciting vibe and it was so good to meet up with people who are doing their own design side projects – such as Melissa (Portland Designers in the Madmen Era) and Mike (A Ziggy Stardust Show). I’ve decided to clear my schedule for design week next year and attend the full week of events. After two whirlwind days in Portland, it was off to Seattle where we met Haley and Kate, who work for Kim’s publisher Sasquatch Books and Chelsey, the promotional wunderkind who set up our tour. Marlo Miyashiro was a wonderful moderator for a discussion that became my favourite of the entire tour! We traced how we each got into craft and writing books, and I got to ruminate over the future of craft publishing (which, trust me, is something that I can talk about for HOURS). And, then we got to go out for grilled cheese sandwiches and bourbon. Seattle knows how to live.

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.@craftivista matched the party decor that Kate & Haley of @sasquatchbooks brought to our Seattle launch. #latergram View on Instagram

After 24 hours in the Emerald City, we were on the Bolt Bus to Vancouver, BC (home for Kim and I). It was only Betsy’s second time in the city, and while I’d hope to show her more but the inside of my apartment and thai food on Main Street was as far as we got before our last event at Hot Art, Wet City - a wonderful little gallery that I think everyone should know about. Naturally, some of my favourite people showed up….

Thanks to everyone who came out through San Francisco, Oakland, Portland, Seattle, and Vancouver to celebrate with us! I can’t wait to hear what you think of the book. Tomorrow we fly out bright and early to Toronto, so my next blog post will detail some East Coast adventures – hopefully not all of them in one post! For the details of our East Coast schedule, check out my events page. We’ll be in Toronto, Philly, Boston, Brooklyn, and DC – and we’ll be teaching one last Make, Mend, Reflect workshop at Makeshift Brooklyn (tickets still available!).

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Thumbnail image for Greetings from Oakland!

Greetings from Oakland!

October 3, 2014

It’s day three of our Make Your Voice heard tour, and Kim Werker and I are working away at a Peet’s Coffee Shop in Oakland, California. Yesterday we had a fabulous day of touring San Francisco with artist Sonya Philip who gave a true tour with stops at Scrap San Francisco (@scrapsf), a non-profit urban recycling […]

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California, here we come!

September 30, 2014

A yarn bombing of Union Square by IshKnits, 2013 In less than 24 hours, Betsy Greer, Kim Werker and I will be in San Francisco! We’re so pleased to be starting our multi-city author tour Make Your Voice Heard: The Intersection of Craft, Creativity, and Activism of North America to celebrate our three new books. I hope that […]

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What We (should) Talk About When We Talk About Fashion

September 21, 2014

Earlier this week, my blood boiled at a news story. Mass clothing retailer Urban Outfitters  claimed that they had NO idea that a recent bloodied Kent State sweatshirt that they manufactured had a link to violence. This story came on the tail of another, weeks earlier clothing retailer Zara was under a storm of criticism […]

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Silvie Kilgallon’s Stitched Illiad

September 7, 2014

Now THIS is a feat. Classics student and artist Silvie Kilgallon is attempting to stitch all twenty-four books of Homer’s Illiad. She’s chronicling her daily process here: http://stitchediliad.tumblr.com. Silvie has published a wonderful artist statement about her work, including this statement on how a great classic work can translate to the act of stitching: “Here, I attempt […]

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On Yarn Bombing and Ethics

August 20, 2014

Olek, aka the bad girl of yarn bombing who doesn’t consider herself a yarn bomber, is in the middle of controversy again. Last week, she wrapped pieces in Cancun’s Underwater Museum with her signature camo-graffiti crochet in a campaign to “save our seas” supported by PangeaSeed, who, according to their website, is an international organization who […]

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Thumbnail image for Vancouver’s Our Social Fabric Needs Your Help

Vancouver’s Our Social Fabric Needs Your Help

August 10, 2014

Yesterday I finally got a chance to check out Our Social Fabric.  A non-profit organization based in Vancouver, Our Social Fabric takes donations of any fabric that can be repurposed through crafting and sewing. This fabric is then sold at bi-weekly sales at extremely reasonable prices. The 2-meter bundles pictures in this post (the blue one is silk!) […]

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On Starting Small: Six Word Short Stories

August 5, 2014

The city that I live in has a mild climate – we live in a rainforest. Each summer we get a couple of weeks of rain that washes down the city, returning it to cleanliness and coolness. I expect this.  As a pale skinned, sweater-loving person, I long for it. This year however, our summer […]

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All this with a little bit of yarn…

July 12, 2014

Yarn street works by Femoesa, who is based in The Hague. Who says that you can’t create great street art with just a little bit of yarn? Pretty clever, isn’t it? This takes fence-wrapping to a whole new level. All photos are courtesy of the artist and used with permission. To see more of Femoesa’s […]

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Book Tour Announced!

June 11, 2014

I’m thrilled to announce the details of my fall book tour with fellow authors Betsy Greer and Kim Werker. Our brilliant publishers Arsenal Pulp Press & Sasquatch Books have partnered to send us on an incredible fall tour where we’ll visit 12 venues in eight different cities across the US & Canada. We’ll be participating in […]

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