Tomorrow afternoon, we will pack up the car with racks and boxes, tables and tissue paper, and lots and lots of jewelry and drive across the river. We'll park at a loading dock amidst a sea of other such cars. Carts and dollies will whiz around as over 250 other businesses like ours come together to build Crafty Wonderland
, a true Portland institution. This will be our ninth time showing at Crafty Wonderland
There will be first-timers there and old-timers there. People who've travelled to the convention center from the other side of the country and people who've biked there towing a trailer. We've all been working hard to prepare for the big weekend. When the doors open at 11am on Saturday, Portland shoppers will have been lined up for hours waiting to get in. They'll walk the stands looking for that perfect gift, something they can't find in a big box store, something made with love to give to someone special. Portland will spend hundreds of thousands of dollars in the Convention Center this weekend. And they'll spend it with the little guys: crafters, small-batch manufacturers, independent artists, designers, creatives.
Small victories in a very big way.
Crafty Wonderland and its pioneering founders, Cathy and Torie
, have done more for the independent craft community in Portland than any other single entity. Crafty has been a foothold, a stepping stone, the next rung, the icing on the cake at every stage of our business's growth: from our humble Betsy-all-by-herself origins to where we are now to where we're heading next year. We and hundreds of other crafters, designers, artists, makers--whatever you call them--we've all been helped along by the marketplace, the energy, the vibrance, of Crafty Wonderland.
You know those small businesses that we hear are the economic engine of our country? They're at Crafty. They're there in every stage of development. This weekend, someone will decide to quit her day job because of her sales at Crafty Wonderland. Someone else will buy that much needed business computer or better sewing machine or that nice pair of German pliers. After this weekend's Crafty, someone will sign the lease on a larger studio, maybe even hire that next production assistant.
Very hot metal, quenched by cool water.
But most importantly, this weekend at Crafty Wonderland, many, many sleep deprived people with calloused hands and tired feet will believe just a little bit more that their dreams are possible. A little more attainable. A little less uncertain. This weekend is one of the many things that makes Portland a special place to live, work, and create. We're honored to be a part of this Portland gem. We're inspired by the vision and thousands of hours of work that Cathy and Torie have invested in Crafty Wonderland. We wouldn't be where we are without them, without Crafty Wonderland. We can't wait to see you there. PS! All of our newest unreleased designs will be there, too!!! ***Song of the Moment: I Get Ideas,
by M. Ward***