In which Toronto-based craft is discussed and explored, and art and craft are blurred into a fuzzy category of wonder.
By Amy Borkwood
Introductions! I (very) recently moved to Toronto for the following reasons: to involve myself in the Toronto craft community; to take part in small, community-driven craft shows/sales; and to make as many handbound books as humanly possible. This bi-weekly column will document my adventures as I navigate the craft world of Toronto — from finding resources and attending shows to profiling crafters and artisans across the city.
This past Saturday I attended the Heart & Craft Eco Artisan Market. Oh, outdoor markets in Springtime! In Kensington, where locals and tourists come together to browse eco-wares along sunny sidewalks.
+ salvaged barn-board mirror frames
+ vegan, locally-sourced body care
+ unbleached, organic knitwear
+ locally handmade wooden toys
+ more + more!
Due to the amazing wares, the show was amazingly busy. I was set up next to the very lovely maker of reclaimed barn-board-frames, and I am pretty sure that he sold a rustic, woodsy frame to every person who stopped to look at his work. The fragrant smell of vegan soap attracted passers-by into the market, as tourists stopped to take pictures in front of the vendors, the sunny Kensington storefronts behind them.
In general, craftspeople are innovators in the world of eco-friendly wares. Not only because they’re forced to be eco-conscious — creating their goods locally, inherently avoiding toxic materials since the work is done by hand — but also because of their own inventive crafting choices. Locally, there are some pretty amazing things happening. Post Industrial Ware is making underwear reconstituted from used fabric; simply. uses organic, all-natural ingredients in their handmade soap; local clothing designers Passenger Pigeon use organic cotton, hemp, ecospun, and tencel in their work. Keep an eye out for more crafters/artisans utilizing eco-conscious materials and practices all across the city.
PS! Due to the popularity of this first Heart & Craft Eco Artisan Market, a second event will be held on August 16 at Heart on Your Sleeve, on the corner of Bellevue & Nassau in Kensington Market.
PPS! Be on the lookout for an interview with someone very amazing in two weeks’ time! I will promise you, she is the most-celebrity-of-Toronto!