Don’t miss these makers at Seattle’s Urban Craft Uprising indie craft event this weekend

By Keridwyn Deller

The largest indie craft event in Seattle returns this weekend, December 6 – 8, 2019! Urban Craft Uprising “was founded in 2005 to showcase the work of independent crafters, artists and designers — to provide a unique, high quality, hand-crafted alternative to “big box” stores and mass-produced goods.”
Going to #urbancraftuprising at Seattle Center is one of my favorite holiday traditions. I always find great gifts for people on my list (and take home something extra special to keep for myself). Bring a friend or two and enjoy marveling at all the spectacular items as you pick up gifts for everyone on your list.

Admission is free ($1 suggested donation) on Saturday and Sunday (if you want to attend the preview night on Friday, it’s $10.). This truly is one of the most wonderful shopping experiences you’ll have in Seattle.

Here’s a few makers I think you will want to check out:

 

The earring maker I am most excited to check out is Light Razor Design. Gorgeous earrings and wearables handcrafted from hand-dyed leather, finished hardwoods, and engraved acrylics caught my eye online and I am looking forward to seeing them in person. Ryan (who is based in West Seattle) also crafts wall hangings and planters that would also make great gifts for those on your list who don’t wear jewelry. Check out their Instagram and Etsy shop. Ryan writes: “Every piece is custom conceptualized, designed, cut, engraved, hand-dyed, finished, & assembled by me alone. I utilize computer software and a laser as tools to create each piece, which are then crafted, finished, assembled, and handled one at a time. There is intention, focus, time and special care invested into every item I create.” Light Razor Design wearables are crafted from hand-dyed leather, a variety of acrylics, and hardwoods that Ryan sands and finishes by hands. A few photos:

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Another crafter I’m excited to see in person is an artist whose work graces one of the walls in my guest room/office at home! Collectanea, by Sarah Frost, features a collection of fiber, wood, and paper goods with a fantastic mid-century vibe. I mean, truly, how cute is this mountain wall hanging?

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I have a triangle-shaped wall hanging (also white) that adds a perfect amount of texture to its area of the room. Check out her instagram to check out more of her work.

Another booth I’m looking to check out is Saku Tea (from Bellingham, WA – my college town)! These “superfood latte blends” can be mixed with your favorite milk and served iced or hot and the flavors really intrigue me. From Ruby Cocoa (cocoa, beetroot, cinnamon, and more) to Golden Chai (with tumeric and cardamom and more) to Vanilla Maple Jade (with matcha, vanilla, and more), all these blends really intrigue me. I really enjoy finding non-alcoholic options to mark the end of a long day and I’m excited to add some of their blends to my pantry. You can find them on Instagram here.

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RSVP to the FB event page here.

Have you been to UCU in previous years? Are you going this year? What makers are YOU excited to see in person?

Check out the full vendor list here.

 

Free: Self-Care Quickies Guide for busy days

By Keridwyn Deller

I often hear from friends and clients that it’s tricky to include self-care into their busy lives, so I was inspired to create this “7 Self-Care Quickies” guide as a free gift for everyone! This PDF guide shares 7 self-care “quickies” that can be done by even the busiest of people on the busiest of days.

The guide is short (just like you need it to be!) and many of the tips may surprise you! Discover how easily and naturally you can add some self-care into your busy day.

Get the free guide here.

Which tips are your favorites? What self-care quick tips do you have to add? Share in the comments on this post or in my Facebook group!

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Awesome & eye-popping: “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” oozes charm & hilarity at The Paramount (now through August 11)

Review by Jeanne Kinley Deller

Willy Wonka lives! The current tour of “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” is one awesome production – how can live theatre be this crazy, funny, dazzling, and thoroughly astounding? The brilliant special effects are far more sophisticated than seem possible on any stage – might it be pure magic? The most riveting dynamics are elevated to mind-blowing heights in the second act. Wait for it!

Accolades to Noah Weisberg who exceeds every lofty expectation in his depiction of Willy Wonka. Equal laurels go to Rueby Wood for an endearing portrayal of the precocious Charlie Bucket. We were enamored with Rueby (who shares the coveted role with two other young actors in this tour) on opening night. 

In hot pursuit of the Golden Ticket, convoluted family ties result in utter pandemonium as the superlative cast sings and dances its way into the heart of the audience. One need not fear the beguiling Oompa Loompas, Willy Wonka, nor the perils of a chocolate factory that casts off naughty children. The night is filled with all things remarkable, including jaw-dropping escapades galore. 

Throngs of theatre-goers, while exiting the theatre and waiting in line to validate parking tickets, were left wondering how “THAT” (you’ll know it when you see it! worked. You know the old adage – when patrons exit the theatre discussing the show you know it’s a winner! You, too, can be enveloped in “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory” charms. Your golden tickets are on sale now through August 11, 2019, at The Paramount Theatre in downtown Seattle.

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Students & Educators, check out Broadway at the Paramount’s Facebook page for info on rush tickets.
Photo by Joan Marcus

 

 

Don’t miss these delightful makers at Urban Craft Uprising this weekend June 22 – 23

By Keridwyn Deller

The Urban Craft Uprising summer sale is this weekend June 22 and 23 from 11am – 5pm at Seattle Center. Admission is free (suggested donation $1) and this is one of the most wonderful shopping experiences you’ll have in Seattle.

Check out their vendor map as well as their full vendor list where you can sort by category.

Here’s a few makers I think you will want to check out:

The Little Grimlings: A collection of curious monsters, mushrooms, and other creepy whatnots. These creatures are SO delightful! I love her affordable art stickers (art stickers are fun to include in birthday and thank you notes!)

Not sure which is cuter:

this pride monster

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or this “Hmph Doodle” monster

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She’s even got a monster sticker made especially for wookie fans. 😉

Be sure to welcome the grimlings’ creator, Elizabeth, to town! She recently moved to Washington after driving across the country from North Carolina “with her entire zoo of creatures in the back seat.”  I really love what she shares on her instagram at @for_the_birds – some fun behind the scenes of the making of the grimlings! The Little Grimlings also offers charming figures, such as this “Fur Nubloom.” See them in person at booth 132.

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Another vendor you’ll want to visit is Collectanea. Sarah has been doing macrame a little over a year and her work stopped me in my tracks during the last Urban Craft Uprising event I attended. I got a chance to hear a bit more about her work and plans for the future. She shared, “I love to mix the architectural/geometric wood shapes with the soft cotton cord. I started out doing boho style macrame but realized that’s not what I would hang in my house so I redesigned with a mid-century inspired aesthetic instead! Soon, I hope to incorporate some cards and posters, macrame jewelry, and wood burned pieces as well!” Not only does Collectanea have one of my favorite logos ever, the work is beautiful and is the type of art that I can picture in so many of my friends’ homes. I love how many shapes offers, from triangular wall hangings

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a great gift for the mountain-lover in your life

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to plant holders

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and much more. You can follow @Collectanea on Instagram. Be sure to stop by 29 to see the work in person!

In UCU’s own words: “You’ll find cosmetics, watches, candles, books, games and puzzles, clothing, beautiful artwork, cross-stitch kits, ceramics, jewelry, garden decor, skin care and more – we have it all!  There’s a little something for everyone, whether you’re shopping for gifts, some stylish new additions to your home, or treating yourself to some handmade goodness, this show is so well rounded and will be exciting for the WHOLE family! ”

Other makers you may want to visit during the craft show include foransuon, ryan berkley illustration, oddfaunaitscathywu, mcreativej, and jonboy caramels.

Invite your friends to the Urban Craft Uprising Facebook event page here.

 

For the enchantment of old and new audiences alike, “Wicked” plays now through July 7 at Seattle’s Paramount Theatre

Review by Jeanne Kinley Deller

What fun, upon entering the theatre, to discover a colossal map of OZ (design by Francis Keeping) front and center. There’s no better way to get your bearings on the path you’ll be traversing throughout the evening. The map and a stunning, hovering dragon entertain parents and children alike while awaiting the action.

Action, as anticipated, is what “Wicked” delivers beyond compare. Embattled witches, magical flying monkeys, raging palace guards, wild denizens of the Emerald City, and so much more for your entertainment. Costuming, lighting, and sets are unbelievably creative, dazzling, and mystifying.

With all the courage, heart, and brains summoned for their adventures to and from OZ, the cast of “Wicked” enamors the audience with its rousing renditions of Steven Schwartz’s beloved musical score. Notably, of course, are the Bad Witch Elphaba (Mariand Torres) and the Good Witch Galinda (Erin Mackey) who melt hearts with their agonizing, hilarious, and forever heartwarming musical hits.

For your merriment and amusement,  purchase tickets to join these “Wicked” witches and their raucous crusaders. If you listen closely, you’ll likely catch a cleverly disguised line or two that startles you into the midst of today’s current political climate. Now until July 7th, 2019, “Wicked” tickets are available at The Paramount Theatre in downtown Seattle.

Tickets start at $39. This production is also offering $25 lottery tickets in Seattle. Details, in their own words:

Two and one-half hours prior to each performance, people who present themselves at The Paramount Theatre box office will have their names placed in a lottery drum; thirty minutes later, names will be drawn for a limited number of orchestra seats at $25 each, cash only.  This lottery is available only in-person at the box office, with a limit of two tickets per person.  Lottery participants must have a valid photo ID when submitting their entry form and, if chosen, when purchasing tickets. 

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Photo by Joan Marcus 

Video clip, here.

This school is rockin’!  Andrew Lloyd Webber’s smash hit “School of Rock” fires up audiences. Now through May 19 at The Paramount

Review by Tony Bohn:

Based on the 2003 bestselling movie by the same name, Andrew Lloyd Webber’s “School of Rock” opened last night as a part of the KeyBank Broadway season at The Paramount in downtown Seattle.  Nominated for four 2016 Tony awards including Best Musical, Best Score, Best Book, and Best Leading Actor, “School of Rock” follows the story of a wannabe rock star named Dewey Finn.  In desperate need of money to pay rent to his best friend who he lives with, he conspires to earn the money by posing as a substitute teacher at a prestigious prep school.  Woefully unprepared and unqualified to teach normal school subjects, he proceeds to transform his class of high achievers into a mind-blowing full-on rock band while turning on the charms and falling for the school’s headmistress.

Filled with catchy original rock musical tunes by Webber, and a hilarious script, this show will keep you entertained and rocking in your seat for the duration.  Merritt David Janes as Dewey Finn does a spot-on imitation of Jack Black from the original movie, while also bringing his own sense of flair and updates to the role.  The best part of the show has got to be the remarkably talented and adorable kids that make up the rock band.  They will blow your mind as they sing, dance, and jam on stage with guitars, keyboards, drums, and bass, and I couldn’t get enough of them!

In a time when so many arts programs get cut in education, School of Rock is a family-friendly affair that shows us why music can still be a crucial tool in driving a child’s creativity and why letting kids be kids and have fun playing, can result in more well-rounded and happy children.  School of Rock plays at the Paramount now through Sunday May 19, 2019.  More information and tickets can be found here.

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Photo by Evan Zimmerman

Review: Book-It’s Returning the Bones at Erickson Theatre on Capitol Hill is captivating audiences now through April 14 (and you should be one of those audience members)

Review by Keridwyn Deller:

Gin Hammond is one of the Pacific Northwest’s top vocal talents. One woman shows are hard to pull off but as soon as I saw Gin’s name attached to Book-it’s performance, I marked the date on my calendar – she is just that talented.  Gin soars as performer and author of Returning The Bones, Book-it’s current production at Erickson Theatre in Capitol Hill in Seattle, now through April 14. Get your tickets now to see this fierce, lovely, insightful, talented woman play 28 (TWENTY EIGHT!) characters in one night of theatre.

I want you to see this show. I truly enjoyed our night at the theatre and have thought of this production many times since seeing it. I loved Returning The Bones storyline, the writing, the moments of laughter, the history unveiled, the moments that help us remember how far we’ve come and how far we still have to go as a society. I’ve procrastinated writing this review because I want it to be well written, to be worth of the art that is on that stage. Gin Hammond’s “Returning the Bones” is a true gift to Seattle and I want you to see it.  If I could hit pause on my night and find the time to find more words to describe this show for you tonight, I would do it. But I can’t seem to find that pause button. And this show closes April 14 which means you only have a few shows left to see the show and this is a small theatre, friends. So I’m tossing this review up to get the word out. I recommend you get your tickets now.  (Read other reviews of the show on Book-it’s Facebook page.) Also, I want to mention this show is 90 minutes + an intermission – perfect for any night of the week. (I love shows that are under 2 hours – see earlier note about needing that pause button in life. This show is worth putting down your to-do list and taking a moment to hear Bebe’s story, eloquently told by the delightful Gin Hammond). Recommended for ages 11+.

In their own words:

“Book-It Repertory Theatre (Book-It) presents acclaimed Seattle actress Gin Hammond’s inspiring, 28-character solo play, Returning the Bones. Based on the life of Hammond’s aunt, Dr. Carolyn Beatrice Montier (aka “Bebe”), Returning the Bones brilliantly responds to one of life’s most challenging questions: How do you choose between your country, your people, and yourself? A surprisingly comical story, Returning the Bones brings us into intimate contact with the luminaries of the day including President Lyndon B. Johnson, Eleanor Roosevelt, James Baldwin, and Queen Elizabeth. Returning the Bones runs through April 14, 2019 at The Erickson Theatre on Capitol Hill.

On sharing her aunt’s remarkable life with the world, Hammond remarks, “Of all the feedback I’ve gotten for this show, my favorite is, ‘after seeing this show my husband decided he would keep fighting for something he was about to give up on.’ It’s a very different time from when I first started writing this show, but it feels more relevant than ever. I’m also excited to bring the audience on a journey to so many different countries, especially after living abroad for the past year. And, I have to confess that I’m simply looking forward to being able to spend time with the main character again; to feel her presence, her humor, her courage, and her profound ability to love.'”

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Photos by John Ulman