From felt handbags to ponchos, Circle Craft’s best finds



Now that your pumpkin lanterns are safely stowed away in the compost bin, it’s time to get ready for the first big holiday craft fair of the season. labyrinth of more than 300 exhibitors showing their work. From trendy West Coast wood jewelry to South Asian-flavored felts, here are some of the new artisan creations to be discovered during the festivities, which take place Tuesday, November 11 through November 16 at the Vancouver Convention Center.

British Columbia inspired wooden jewelry by Ugly Bunny.

Ugly rabbit

This Kelowna-based jewelry line is a cool mix of British Columbia wilderness and high-tech technique. From the imaginations of two Ontario transplants who wanted to live closer to the slopes, Ugly Bunny’s affordable wood designs are adorned with landscapes and animals that are meticulously laser cut.

The one-and-a-half-year-old line is unlikely to have even originated in a different location, for reasons starting with the landscape it depicts: “Many of the illustrations were based on photos my husband took in. snowboarding in the backcountry, ”says designer Sarah Jane Reynolds, a fine arts graduate from OCAD University in Toronto who has a background in jewelry design. While Reynolds and his other half, Brett Sichello, create the graphics to put on the hardwood that they obtain largely from a local carpenter, it is their neighbors who laser-cut their designs – a process that ‘team is still exploring.

“The reason we were able to grow up is that they are so patient with us,” says Reynolds, who adds that she reduced the trip to the laser cutting shop to a “longboard ride of 17”. minutes “.

For her part, Reynolds assembles, varnishes and hand paints the delicate pieces, down to the tiny golden chevron on Ugly Bunny’s popular little earrings. The standout pendant necklaces you’ll see at Circle Craft feature spirit animals like a wolf, owl, and deer in classic oval cabochons with brass chains; some showcase the grain of woods like walnut and cherry, while others are highlighted against a turquoise background. Prices range from just $ 18 for nails to $ 45 for trendy necklaces.

Sara felts

“When I do something, I give it my all,” Vinitha Sara John told the Law. And so the Vancouver artist took a craft that sometimes takes decades to perfect and took him to new heights of expressiveness. From 2011, when John purchased a small kit for needle felting, she immersed herself in books and workshops on form, incorporating the jewel-toned saree fabrics of her own heritage into the design. age-old boiling process, as well as hand-dyed bristles. and fine Italian merino wool. The result is a lightweight felt she uses for her brightly hued textured pouches, South Asian-inspired garments and bowls, as well as more neutral ‘prints’ of leaves and other natural imagery on clothing and. scarves.

“For me, the most important thing is that I want it to be mine,” she explains. “I don’t want to go to a class and do 20 of the same kind of thing. I’m just trying to give it my own twist.

In this year’s market, look for scarves starting at around $ 150, bags around $ 200, waistcoats at $ 400 and up, and trendy jackets around $ 700. Each piece testifies to the dedication of its creator. “A single scarf takes me about three hours to make,” says John. “I have to love him, and I hope someone else will like him too.”

The retro-modern pillows from Hay-oh.


Adrienne Parsons’ funky cushions and bags are made from scraps of fabric, used denim and recycled materials, but she never sacrifices a clean, modern design in the process. Cushions by artist Delta are bold, retro geometric pieces that play with color blocks. One look features a three-dimensional stitched modernist flower with a felt center protruding from the middle. It’s a style that’s also reflected in the quirky geometry of its fun crib quilts, contemporary pieces made from traditional cotton.

It’s no surprise that Parsons can do clever magic with a needle and thread: his mother is fiber artist Marianne Parsons. “Growing up, I wasn’t always a fan of sewing,” Parsons laughs. “I would ask him to do certain things for me, but I still had to devote my time and effort to them.”

Young Parsons’ skill lies in finding elegant ways to use every nook and cranny of old material. Her popular Blue Buds are denim pillows with a large alien eye and upholstered hanging legs that are perfect for children’s rooms; now she makes small bags that also use the back pockets of old jeans.

“I’m a hobbyist, I love trying things out,” she says, and luckily for us: her booth will also include felt ornaments, starting at $ 5, with prices going up to $ 200 for the one of her stylish, handmade baby quilts.

The funky but practical rain ponchos from Moojoes.

Moojoes rainwear

Like all great ideas, the must-have children’s rain ponchos from Moojoes were born out of necessity. Friends from North Vancouver, Desiree Kranendijk and Stephanie Loewen, designed them for their own family as well as anyone else.

“I have four kids and Desiree has three, so we were looking for affordable, high quality, safe rain gear that the kids could put on on their own. Loewen said.

The result, after months of researching their kitchen floors for the best waterproof and breathable fabrics and fits, are ponchos with 360 degree reflective visibility made from EU-friendly Oeko-tex Standard 100 fabric. environment. There is a breathable mesh lining and hip prints on the hood linings. And the cut? Watch how Moojoes ponchos slide onto a backpack as a child walks to school. The models are available in size ranges such as 3 to 5 and 5 to 7, so your child will get many years of use out of them. (All are $ 79.95.) And best of all, they come in funky alternatives to the standard red or yellow raincoat: think eggplant, fuchsia, charcoal, and apple green.

Parents have started wanting their own ponchos, so you’ll see Moojoes’ adult range, including men, at $ 119.95. Much like the rain in this city, their popularity shows no signs of abating.

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