Thursday, December 3, 2009


The Holiday Shop-n-Stroll is only 2 days away, and our vendors are gearing up for a craft-packed Saturday!

Holiday Shop-n-Stroll
Saturday, Dec 5th, 10am-3pm
Downtown Silver Spring
Ellsworth Drive (between Fenton St. & Georgia Ave.)

Handmade Mart and the Silver Spring FRESHFARM Market are excited to bring you the Holiday Shop-n-Stroll! Come out this Saturday to get a jump start on all your holiday shopping needs and stock up on local produce.

Handmade Goods For Sale!
Handmade Mart crafters will be selling perfect-for-gift-giving goods all day -- from hand-sewn clothing, cute jewelry, laptop sleeves, silk-screened posters and pottery, to cards, ornaments, and the cutest stocking-stuffers this side of the beltway.

Make Stuff!
The Pyramid Atlantic Art Center will be hosting an ornament-making workshop at their retail store, Art Spring (at the corner of Ellsworth Dr. & Georgia Ave.). Make tree toppers to take home, or hang yours up for all to see on the Silver Spring tree, during the official lighting at 5pm.

Buy Local Produce!

The FRESHFARM Market will have a host of local farmers selling fresh produce and other yummy goods.

From 10am-Noon, stop by the FRESHFARM area to meet Chef Pedro Matamoros from the new 8407 Kitchen Bar! Sample his mocktails made with apple cider and fresh ginger... yummmm!

Eat Local!
Make it a full day in Downtown Silver Spring. Enjoy brunch and dinner from one of the many fantastic, family-friendly restaurants near the fair. Some of our favorite restaurants include McGinty's Public House, Thai at Silver Spring and Red Rock Canyon Grill.

A short walk away is Nicaro, Negril, and the always fabulous Jackie's Restaurant and Quarry House Tavern - both of which continuously support the independent craft and music scene in Silver Spring.

Can't make the fair?
Visit our vendors' websites to purchase their amazing handmade goods all year long.

We're already planning for our annual, Handmade Mart spring show! Same place, cool crafters, and all-day music and entertainment. Sign up for our email list (at the bottom of the site), and you'll be kept up-to-date with the latest Handmade Mart news!

Check out some of the Holiday Shop-n-Stroll online buzz:
Crafty Bastard's Cut the Craft
Daily Candy
A Parent in Silver Spring

Baltimore Etsy Street Team

Silver Spring Singular
Baltimore City Paper
Baltimore Style
Express Night Out

Questions? Email us at
We hope to see you this Saturday at the Holiday Shop-n-Stroll!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Vendor Q&A with Craftgasm

What is your craft all about?

My work is all about reusing materials and finding new uses for things. All of craftgasm's paper products are made with maps and other bits that were on their way to (or fished from) the recycling bin, including the cardstock and the envelopes. I love looking at a scrap of reclaimed paper and editing it to decide how it could be best showcased for a notecard, or deciding that it would make a better envelope. Because everything is thus sourced, each of my items, while similar to each other, are one-of-a-kind.

How did you get started in your craft?
I started making stationery because I wasn't finding what I wanted to buy - especially a few years ago, when it was harder to find snark and irreverence in stationery products. Since I mail a letter or note a few times a week, I started making my own sayings with rubber alphabet stamps. That took forever, so now I have an awesome vintage Electra cursive typewriter to write funny things.

What inspires you to make what you make?
I love picturing craftgasm creations being hand-delivered by postal carriers and brightening someone's mood. It's one of the best feelings to find a hand-addressed envelope among your bills, and to be able to recognize the sender from the handwriting is delightful. I firmly believe there'd be less violence in this world if everyone wrote and received a letter a day.

What is your favorite piece/product you will have with you at the Handmade Mart?
I'm really excited about my new stamped map notecard sets. I designed and carved the stamps myself, then stamped them onto reclaimed map cards. I have a globe stamp and a bicycle stamp so far from which to choose!

Where can folks find your craft outside the Handmade Mart?
At, of course, with 175,485,512,936 of my closest friends. I also occasionally blog at

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Vendor Q&A with K. Flick Studio

What inspires you to make what you make?

I am inspired to create by my customers, friends and family and cheesy as it may be. Through talking with customer, seeing their energy, and doing customer orders I am continuously changing the products that I am creating. When working with brides I might use a stone, chain, or metal that I have not previously used and it will lead into a whole new collection. I really enjoy creating items that others are thrilled to find and excited to incorporate into their wardrobes.

How did you get started in your craft?
I have been making jewelry in some form since I was about 10. My best friend at the time and I had a business making bookmarks and earrings. Needless to say it never went anywhere and I moved onto other things. Late in high school I took metal smithing classes at a local art school and fell in love. I then moved onto college and never managed to work bench classes into my schedule. After graduation, and a few different jobs, I found myself going back to making items for myself and my friends. It was something to do at night that had nothing to do with anything else that might be going on. I find relaxation in the repetition that is required in my work, be is sewing or metal smithing.

What is your favorite piece/product that you will have with you at the Handmade Mart?
Currently I am really enjoying layering, mixing and matching my necklaces. Different colors, textures, and patterns. So I do not have one specific piece as much as a style that I am excited about. Much like a charm bracelet, I like for my necklaces to have a story and all work well together. My Grandmother always had the same gold necklaces around her neck, always. All different lengths and styles, all with different stories. I can remember how regal and beautiful they always looked and she is my inspiration for these pieces.

Where can folks find your craft outside of the Handmade Mart?
I am currently selling my pieces at Red Tree in Baltimore, and at my Etsy store,

Visit me at booth #27!

Vendor Q&A with Maganda Design

What is your craft all about?
My craft is all about fun accessories – everyday embellishments to brighten your day. I’ve been experimenting with fiber, most recently creating a line of knit and crocheted chainlink necklaces. I also started to make feather headpieces. Plus I use my trusty button maker to make magnets and pins my boyfriend and I design either on the computer or from found objects.

How did you get started in your craft?
I taught myself to knit a few years ago from books and YouTube videos while I was living in Boston. I made craft-minded friends who encouraged my new-found interest in fibers. We had knit/crochet get togethers called “Knitting Avengers” which I have since started here in D.C.

What is your favorite piece/product you will have with you at the Handmade Mart?
Most definitely my handknit chainlink necklaces. I had to make chains and chains of I-Cord and I’m really proud of the end product.

Where can folks find your craft outside the Handmade Mart?
You can find me on Etsy at and

Visit me at booth #42!

Vendor Q&A with Design by Erdenesuren

What is your craft all about?

I design and knit hats, scarves, laptop sleeves, wallets, purses, gift boxes, and jewelries with marble stones and colorful recycled papers.

How did you get started in your craft?
I taught myself how to knit last summer but I've always painted, designed, and made clothes here and there. I once made a collection of clothes out of leaves only and participated in a fahsion show with it.

What inspires you to make what you make?
Colors. Multicolored yarns and stuff. Colorful handmade products are for sure give you happiness and less stress.

Where has your craft taken you?
I've been able to let others see my work domestically and internationally at arts and crafts fairs, markets, online shops, and I've made so many awesome friends. I'm very happy to be where I'm now and to be doing what I've always loved to do. I hope to continue growing.

Where can folks find your craft outside the Handmade Mart?
Find me at I'm here 24/7. You can also find me at the DC Craft Mafia's Holiday Heist Show which is on November 21, 2009, at The Soundry in Vienna, VA, from 12pm to 6pm. Visit me at booth #6! See you soon.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Vendor Q&A with The Guestroom Closet

What is your craft all about?
Generally, we make stuff for kids and those who love them. From reusable snack bags and napkins made from vintage fabric, to baby barrettes and toddler bows, to personalized burp cloths and diaper totes - we've got gifts covered.

What inspires you to make what you make?
We're inspired by beautiful ribbons, fabulous vintage fabrics, and tins of colorful buttons. The ideas and designs for most of our products are born from our own needs and wants. We have kids in our lives who need hair clips and cute diaper bags, we want to pack eco-friendly lunches, and set stylish tables.

Where has your craft taken you?
Really, our craft has taken us back home. We're a three woman operation - a mother, daughter, daughter team. We live in three different states and, like everyone else, we have lives that are crazy with family and work obligations. The best thing about our little business is that we get to slow down a bit and reconnect with each other while crafting.

Where can folks find your craft outside the Handmade Mart?
Online, you can find us at and on Etsy at - and we occasionally blog at In the real world, we're at various shows in Atlanta, Western North Carolina, and the DC metro area. We’re also proud to have our items in Silver Spring's own Pyramid Atlantic store.

Visit me at booth #43!

Vendor Q&A with Elizabeth Graeber Illustration

What is your craft all about?
My craft is Illustration. I draw pictures to be used for books, to hang on the wall, as note cards, for calendars and more.

What inspires you to make what you make?
I am inspired to make what I make from the drawings I do in my sketchbooks.

Where can folks find your craft outside the Handmade Mart? and right now... SOVA coffee and wine bar on H street.

Visit me at booth #33!

Vendor Q&A with Hogmalion

How did you get started in your craft?

Do you mean when did I start putting price tags on the crap I make? I think it can fairly be traced back to a yard sale I had one dead of winter in the late 70s at age—I don’t know—nine? I’m pretty sure that’s where I caught the bug. In the corner of the photo you can see a large grocery bag; in it were “paper cameras” (???) that I woke up at the crack of dawn to fold in preparation for the big sale. Total sales for the day? $0.00!

What is your favorite piece/product you will have with you at the Handmade Mart?
I hesitate to declare any one product my “favorite.” And this is not out of some sort of precious notion regarding equal and unconditional motherly love for all of my products, but mainly just because I’m afraid I’ll put some sort of hex on it. Last year I declared the crack rock earrings my favorite and BAM! Didn’t sell one pair. At Crafty Bastards this year I said my favorite was the Meat Mint. Same thing. So forget it!

Where has your craft taken you?
Well, it’s taken me to Adams Morgan a couple of times, and Silver Spring. Although, I went to high school in Silver Spring, and so I guess it really hasn’t taken me anywhere. This May, though, it’s going to take me to London. The plan is to bring a couple of Fetus Cookie Cutters with me when I fly over to see The Stooges. I figure that if I give Iggy a cutter, I can write off the damn whole trip (whatever that means).

Where can folks find your craft outside the Handmade Mart?
I’ve currently got a few things in some shops around town, and a website through which one could purchase something if so inclined. Soon, though, look for Hogmalion & Company on stage at the Hammersmith Apollo Theatre in London!

Visit me at booth #8!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Vendor Q&A with imoM

What is your craft all about?
imoM is built around the artwork of our father, Ming Yen Hsu. He had a very unique style - it was very childlike and minimalist, and it matched his outlook on life. He was a thoughtful, deep person who enjoyed art and was intrigued by nature, religion, science and medicine. His work includes a dazzling array of original watercolors, pastels and paper collages.

With the imoM shop, we basically present adaptations and prints of his artwork in the form of 4x6 greeting cards, 11x14 posters that can be framed on the wall, as well as various kinds of jewelry inspired by his artwork!

How did you get started in your craft?
For a long time, we talked to our father about one day making prints of his artwork so he could share it with more people, instead of having it remain tucked away in his basement studio. When he died in 2007 after almost a life-long battle with a recurring brain tumor, it was a kick in the pants to really get his artwork out there the way he always wanted. After our sister-in-law started making jewelry inspired by his artwork, we all started thinking more creatively about how to adapt his artwork in other ways than just print.

What is your favorite piece/product you will have with you at the Handmade Mart? I don't have a favorite because they are so varied, but the vivid, lively and colorful ones are the ones that jump out most at me. There are certain prints that are most popular but there is always something for everyone. The cards are perfect to send for the holidays, or as gifts, and a lot of people also frame their cards in sets, instead of actually sending them as cards.

Where can folks find your craft outside the Handmade Mart?
We have an etsy shop at: Also for upcoming specials and new items, follow us on Twitter at and on Facebook under the name imoM.

Visit me at booth #42!

Vendor Q&A with Merina Art Glass and Jewelry

What is your craft all about?

My craft is kiln-formed glass, also known as fused glass. It’s a medium that dates back thousands of years to the Mesopotamians and then Romans. In this medium, you use the heat of a kiln to fire, fuse, and shape the glass.

How did you get started in your craft?
I began as a jewelry artist, working with beads and stones, and silver. But I began to hear about fused glass and loved the look of it. I took my first glass fusing class five years ago and was instantly hooked.

What inspires you to make what you make?
I love the beauty and versatility of glass and the fact that it comes in so many forms—powder, sheet, crushed, pulled—and I find myself drawing in it, carving it, molding it, shaping it. I’m inspired by abstract forms, tribal markings, and patterns in nature and I love vibrant colors. And glass challenges you because it moves, shifts, reacts, even changes color. I love that and find in my sculptures, vessels and jewelry, that I’m constantly searching for a new technique or language in my work so I can distinguish it from others.

What techniques do you use?
I sandblast, draw with glassline pen, cut, carve, even mold the glass. I also fuse, and tack-fuse the glass. I like dichroic glass but am challenged to use it differently.

What is your favorite piece/product you will have with you at the Handmade Mart?
I plan to have some new pieces inspired by tribal art and tattoos and my own blackwork.

Where has your craft taken you?
I’ve been so lucky to learn from some incredible artists. They’ve taught me not to be afraid of color, rough edges, and abstracts. It’s an entirely new way of looking at the world around me. So much fun!

Where can folks find your craft outside the Handmade Mart?
Artspring Silver Spring gallery store, Portable Rainbows Gallery in Baltimore, and National Capital Glass Guild shows. I’ll soon have a website up and running too and do personal showings.

Visit me at booth #2!

Vendor Q&A with Babus Toys

What is your craft all about?
Babus is all about natural, vibrant and safe(!) baby and kids toys. Wool yarn is my primary ingredient, but I also use organic cotton and reclaimed fabrics. I love making things that bring immediate smiles.

How did you get started in your craft?
A car accident! My mother taught me how to knit over the phone, from Takoma Park, MD to San Francisco, while I was recovering. I was instantly addicted.

What inspires you to make what you make?
My son, Nicholas, as he grows. Also, my love of nature, animals and color.

Where can folks find your work outside the Handmade Mart? is my Etsy shop. I also sell online through Palumba Toys, and in a few brick and mortar shops such as Wholly Craft in Columbus, OH.

Visit me at booth #13!

Vendor Q&A with this chickadee

What inspires you to make what you make?
I am striving to be more self-sufficient so when i start thinking about something i'd like to have, i try to figure out a way to make it myself. i'm sure that this desire comes from my grandparents, they were able to create almost everything that they needed from clothing to cabinets and everything in between. their way of life is a great source of inspiration.

What techniques do you use?
I sew squares and triangles together...and sometimes a curve or two. what is your favorite piece/product you will have with you at the handmade mart?the wall pillows! they're sort of new and fun to make. this one is a personal fave. there are some other new items in the works as well...they might make their debut at the handmade mart.

Where has your craft taken you?
All the way to seattle once! now i'm forever scheming to find a way back. where can folks find your craft other than the handmade mart?,, Fibre Space in Alexandria, VA.

Visit me at booth #30!