Can I be a complete and utter asshole for like, 2 seconds? Okay, so let’s be honest: when you’re walking down the street and you spot one of those tables with handmade jewelry/goods sprawled out onto a table, do you really give a shit? I mean seriously, it’s bad enough that your parents keep animal figurines in the house so why buy more? I don’t want a statue of a cat! I want something cool!
There were a bunch of really nice, custom made hats. (Oloverhats.com)
When I first heard about the Indie Bazaar I was under the impression that the majority of these folks were selling just that: animal figurines and random nothingness. But being a good sport, I decided to check out this Indie Bizarre. What should I expect? Will there be grandmas and grandpas schlepping around fanny packs and purchasing flattened wine bottles to display over the fireplace? I didn’t come here to shop, I came here to scrutinize and judge.
But after looking around I started to feel a bit confused. Why aren’t there any bad/horribly designed figurines? And why is everything… cool?
I loved the rustic feel of their booth. It was very "gypsy"
All of these necklaces were original pieces from the early 1900's and were redesigned for a modern twist.
Perhaps I underestimated the powers of Batman (Owen Geronimo) because damnit Janet, this shit is pretty damn good! Taking a look at these items you couldn’t help but think “Wow! Someone really cared about this product!” The jewelry was crafted beautifully, the clothes were of great texture and quality, and the various knick-knacks were quirky and fun. Why can’t they sell this stuff down by Union Square?!
A cogs and lace belt buckle (Sayuri Designs)
I'm feeling very thirsty....(Found Jewelry)
The Indie Bazaar lasted a girthy 5 hours which gave me plenty of time to walk around not once, but maybe 6 or 7 times. I chatted with a few of the artists and I got a peek into their world. Was it all glittery and gold? Surprisingly…no. A harsh reality struck when artist after artist, the same reply echoed across the room.
Me: How’s business?
Artists: Good! Well… there are a lot of people looking, but not a lot of people buying.
Some artists sold one item while most didn’t make a single sale. It was truly heart breaking. How can these true artists go about unheard of?
Check this out: This artist (Heathered) used maps of various locations and transformed them into little wallets! HOW COOL IS THAT?!
I was SOO gonna buy this: the same artist (Heathered) that created the map wallets also uses vintage newspapers!
HAAAAY GUURRRL! Keyboard cat meets Pickle surprise (totallyradstore.com)
Give me a T-Shirt with a kitten and I am a happy man (totallyradstore.com)
Maybe it's the Asian in me but I'm a sucker for anything cutesy like this (fatninjainyoface.blogspot.com)
After hearing the war stories of various vendors, I had to step outside and get some fresh air. With rain pouring onto my face and cold air slabbing my neck like a wet towel, I started to think about these vendors in a different light: Despite our gut feeling to turn away from anyone selling us anything, we really need to give these artists a fair shot. These are the kids who grew up creating macaroni necklaces for their parents. These are quiet ones, always keeping to themselves and constantly drawing in their notebook.
One of the vendors from Fat Ninja
A cutie from Eclectic Gems. Oh, and check out that feathered head piece! Shweeet! (eclecticgemsjewelry.com)
Is this not the GREATEST SCARF EVAR?! I need to buy this AND that kitten shirt! (Factory 150)
Who did you want to be when you were younger? Did you wish to be an astronaut? A fireman? A dirty politician? The artists that showcased at Indie Bazaar are of a rare breed: they are doing exactly what they’ve always wanted to do as a child. In a way, artists are the only real people on earth. Their creations are simply bursts of creative energy converted into solid form.
Kinda looks like a flying V guitar!
These were some of the most detailed and sturdy necklaces I've ever seen (mariele-ivy.com)
As a fan of "chocolate" I was CONSUMED with joy when I saw this shirt. If only they had a men's version :/ (sebastianthreadz.com)
Maybe that’s why Batman created this show: to give the local artists a fair shot. A chance to be heard, to be seen, and to be appreciated. Even though dollar bills weren’t falling from the sky and into their pockets, I could still see smiles across their faces because at the end of the day, this is what they love to do. None of this stuff was mass produced but rather, built from scratch. From tired and mangled hands, chiseling away until all that was left was something perfect. This is art. This is style. It’s local, it’s current, and it’s a lot better than the crap they sell at the mall. Viva la (local) Artistas!
Oh, and you should also buy a necklace or too while you’re at it! (locally, of course) :D