Friday, June 27, 2008

The Great Mud Out 2008



WOW! I shouldn't be surprised, but the Revival was... wet and fun and long and just a great experience all the way around.

I went the day before it all started and set up my tent and got the lay of the land. The weather was prefect, not too hot and not too cold. Blue skies, absolutely gorgeous. And, of course, too good to last.



Saturday was wonderful too, but much warmer. We were right down by the Hudson River, so we got a nice breeze once in a while and that helped. My mom came to assist and she is the best salesperson! I was able to go with my boyfriend and walk around just a little, see some exhibits and get some lemonade.

During the day, we were able to hear fun and upbeat music, as we were near the dance tent. Clothes for the Soul, run by Denise and Randy, were right behind me,and so nice and helpful. Truly wonderful people. (More on them later). I was sandwiched between Lennie, from Metal Magic and Freddy, from Churoncalla. Both great guys that had been doing the festival for years and they had such wonderful laid back attitudes, it totally added a chill vibe.



The booth looked wicked good! I had up fun fabric for my backdrop and my great new table cloths. I also had paper lanterns for lighting and they added a nice touch. I met so many cool people, and everyone was into the recycled aspect of my products. I was glad for the warm reception.



In addition to clothing, Randy makes fun colored hoola hoops. All day, we watched bunches of people playing games and hoola hooping.





Later, I finally got a chance to try. It was really hard at first, then Randy switched me to a larger hoop and it wasn't too hard anymore. SO MUCH FUN! And good exercise too. Jeff, the b.f., tried one too, but didn't get into it nearly as much as I did.



I really got into it and just stood outside my tent (to the left) and hooped it up for a while. Randy came over and took the hoop away, as a women wanted to buy it right off me! Soon, the sun started to go down and the day moved to a close...



Then next day, we weren't so lucky. The day dawned damp and dull. Then the rain started. It poured on and off for a about two and a half hours.



People still wandered around and came in the tent, but the festive spirit of the fair was dampened, pun intended. ;(





However, some people's enthusiasm couldn't be taken away. While people were bundled up, running for cover, this man played Frisbee, danced and totally enjoyed the rainy weather.

About 2:15pm, they called the festival to a halt and I sprang into action. I needed a t-shirt for my grandma! I needed to go see the Green Living Expo tent! I needed a hoola hoop! I ran around for a while, trying to get a few things done, then we started packing up. About 45 minutes after they canceled the festival, the rain stopped, the clouds totally dissipated and the sun came out. It was nice not to pack up in the rain, but frustrating to have to leave as it had stopped. I didn't get to see the Green Living Expo tent, which I was sad about. Next year?...



We still had a great time all in all and I truly enjoyed it. I think I'll try to do it again, but we'll see. Perhaps next year, we won't have storms every day!

Hoping it won't rain next weekend in Annapolis! July 6th, First Sunday~ Come by it you don't have anything else to do on your holiday weekend~See you there~Jen

Green Tip~ More store brand madness!

I have been scouting more eco (as in economical) solutions to the organic cotton trend. Earlier this year, I found really soft and fluffy 100% organic cotton towels at Bed, Bath and Beyond. At $14.99 for a large bath size, they are about the same price of a 'regular' towel. Don't forget to use those 20% off coupons.

Target has started to carry their own brand of 100% organic cotton sheets. I got them on sale for about $40 for a queen set, which included two pillow cases, a flat and a fitted sheet. Even at the normal price of about $48, this is a really good price for a set of sheets. They are extra roomy for thick mattress and are silky soft. These were right next to the bamboo/cotton sheets that felt so yummy too.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Clearwater Festival~ The Great Hudson River Revival


Thanks to all who made it out to Ballston Arts + Crafts Market this past weekend. While it was hot for the most part, it was a really nice day, great to be back to there. And, of course, freaky weather played a small, but crucial part. Right at the end of the day, a major storm came up and the wind howled. My friend Stacy, talented crafter I got to share my spot with all day, and her husband Ron, helped me carry all my stuff to cover before the rain started! It was great not to pack up wet products.

I got to see quite a few familiar faces, including Laura, above. She is a doll that has been coming to see me, and get a bag, for the last three years. She has always approached my work with such enthusiasm and love, it warms my heart! She was gracious enough to allow me to snap her picture. She was so happy and it positively comes through. Thanks, Laura, I hope you and your new bag have wonderful adventures this summer.

So, onward and upward! Next weekend, I will be in New York State, at the Clearwater Festival, The Great Hudson River Revival. The show is an environmental folk music extravaganza. I am: elated, frenzied, riotous, skittish, fidgety and utterly addicted to the thesaurus! This is literally and figuratively going home. First, I will be able to see my some of my family that still lives in NY. Second, I grew up going to the Clearwater Festival, which my family always called "The Revival". I remember many years of sorting through rubbish, to make sure that people haven't put recycleables into the trash. Lots of great music, dancing and colorful characters. Sunburns and heat stroke, rain while camping out and awesome sesame noodles. Getting politcal buttons and fair trade clothing. Now that I look back, I can see how much the Revival has shaped my life. I still pick through people's trash, to make sure they have recycled properly! ;-)

I will be among some very cool looking artists and craftspeople. I can't wait to check out my co-vendors, especially Metal Magic, Three Crazy Friends and Sound Earth. Check out the info at www.clearwater.org/revival/craft.html. I have a feeling that I might be spending at much money as I make!

Details~

What: The Clearwater Festival, The Great Hudson River Revival
Where:Route 9 in the Village of Croton-on Hudson, Westchester County, New York
When: Saturday + Sunday, June 21-22, 10 am to dusk
Who: Check out the website for the list of performers!
Website: www.clearwater.org/revival/index.html


Even if you can't make it to this weekend, please pass this along to those in the downstate New York area that might be interested. I'll try to remember to take lots of pictures, to post when I get back.

Thanks all and send me good weather luck!~Jen

Green Tip~ Fix it yourself

I have a three headed lamp that I use in my studio, that illuminates my ironing board and sewing machine. It is over 10 years old and has been through many moves. One of the heads doesn't even work anymore, but that is ok. What wasn't ok was when the plug fell off the wire! It literally came apart in my hands. However, I didn't want to be wasteful and just chuck it in the bin. Not very earth or purse friendly, as I would have to buy a new lamp. I went to the Lamplighter on King Street in Old Town Alexandria. It is a family owned business that sells and repairs lamps. For $3, I bought a new plug to fix this exact problem. It took less than a minute and I was good to go! Before you toss something 'broken', try to find out if it can be fixed, either by yourself or someone else, for less than a replacement would be.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Shows, Markets and the Weather, oh my!


What crazy weather we have been experiencing lately!! The only show this whole spring that it hasn't rained, was in Philadelphia, and I had one dog pee on my table cloth and another poop in my tent!! That day, I could have used some rain to wash it away. ;)

Other than battling these freaky storms, I have been truly busy with some other great Jenafusion things~

"Think Green" is the current show on display at the Del Ray Artisans, in Alexandria. It is a wonderfully curated and organized show, that I am so happy to have two bags in. Like most of my products, they are mainly made from recycled items, in this case, a silk skirt and blazer, upholstery samples and a duvet cover. These pieces are some of the only 'functional' art there, as the show has some beautiful prints, painting and photos. Try to stop by and see it, as it both educates and enlightens the eco-artist in all of us.

"Think Green", Del Ray Artisans, 2704 Mount Vernon Avenue, Alexandria, VA, June 5-29,
Hours: Thursday: 12-4pm, Friday: 12-9pm, Saturday: 10am-4pm, Sunday: 12-4pm
Website: www.thedelrayartisans.org

In addition, I have TWO vending gigs this coming weekend, yes, not one, but TWO!

Friday, June 13th, I'll be at the NIH Building 31, Cafeteria in Bethesda, MD from 8am-3pm, for those of you who mainly find me there. This will be my last time at NIH this summer, I'll be back in September.

AND, the very next day, I'll be back at the Ballston Arts + Crafts Market in Arlington. I posted an entry when I found out about it. I don't want to repeat myself anymore that I usually do, so go back and re-read that blog. (http://jenafusion.blogspot.com/2008/03/ballston-arts-crafts-market.html) My good friend Stacy will be joining me, with fun jewelry and cute shadowbox frames. I am hoping the weather stays pretty good and we have a great day on Saturday.

Here are the details:

What: Ballston Arts + Crafts Market
Where: Welburn Square, Arlington, VA
When:Saturday, June 14, 10am-4pm
Metro: Ballston stop, between the metro and the mall, easy!
Website: www.ballstonarts-craftsmarket.blogspot.com

As for my location, I got moved!! I'm now a full 180 degrees around the circle, closer to the mall. I'm actually happy about this, as I think there is more shade over there.


AND, I have been really, really, really busy getting ready for my biggest show ever. (really!) It is the weekend of the summer solstice and I hope that brings me good luck. I'll be at the Clearwater Festival, The Great Hudson River Revival, in Croton-on-Hudson, NY. More on that next week, you'll have to check back.

I know this is a lot to throw at you right now, all at once. You have other things going on, like, perhaps finding a new bathing suit, or what to get your Dad for Father's Day, or does that cute guy down the hall fancy you? Well, grab the guy, head to the market, get a gift for Pops and model some suits for the guy. You'll find out soon enough if he really does fancy you! ;)

See you this weekend~Jen

Green Tip~Change your air and oil filters when needed!
Getting the MOST gas mileage right now has many people slightly obessed right now, as in the case of the new trend of 'hypermiling'. Which is a way to get an extremely high amount of miles per gallon, sometimes in common sense or comical ways. However, we can still learn something from these folks. (For more, read http://www.gasolinecreditcards.com/ecotrekker/2008/03/04/the-ultimate-guide-to-hypermiling-100-driving-and-car-tips-and-resources/)

I do many of these things already, like lightening the load of the stuff in your trunk, having tires inflated properly and the like. However, the last time I went to get my oil changed, they also changed the air filter. My miles per gallon(mpg) jumped from about 35 (which is higher have a lot of people's) to about 40-45 mpg!! Which, is higher than a lot of hybrids!

However, one thing I probably won't do it use an "ice vest" instead of AC in the car. Just doesn't seem practical. :) Happy driving!