Going to market at Open Streets Festival, Waterloo

Preparing for an Arts Market booth at the Open Streets Festival in Waterloo, the picture shows a rack of clothing on the right with several garments hung on display mannequins on the left

What a scramble! The last time I was part of an in-person public event was pre-Covid. I’m out of practice. The City of Waterloo hosts Open Streets Festival on Saturday, June 11 and I’m excited to say I’ve got a spot in the Arts Market that day. With only three weeks to go, it’s time to make decisions on what I take and how I set it all up.

Open Streets Festival is an annual outdoor event in Uptown Waterloo. Access is easy by public transit, bike paths, or on foot. There is also free parking nearby for those who need to drive. Waterloo Park is a lovely spot for a wander or a picnic and it is just a few minutes walk away. (So is the public library – my favourite uptown destination.)

So come on over to Uptown Waterloo on Saturday, June 11. The Arts Market will be set up at Waterloo Public Square/Willis Way. It’s open 10 am – 4 pm and I’ll be there, rain or shine.

The City of Waterloo, Open Streets Festival official link is here.

37 minutes of fame – how my work ended up at the Fashion History Museum

Carol and Rachel (from the Fashion History Museum) are looking at a tunic Carol made from a shirt and a lace curtain valance.

They say it’s all about who you know. A few years ago I instigated an annual event called “Novel Attire…not your usual fashion show.” It promised “fun, fashion, and perhaps a hint of madness.” One of my collaborators/co-conspirators was Rachel Behling of Auburn Vintage Clothiers, who is now also working with the Fashion History Museum in Cambridge, ON. Rachel asked, on behalf of the Museum, if she could interview me about my design process. Of course I agreed!

Rachel watches as Carol explains the process of turning a damaged and dated dress into a versatile dress/tunic.
Carol talks Rachel through the design and decision-making process of rehabilitating a damaged dress.

Rachel visited my studio where we talked about how I sort and organize my materials, where ideas come from, how I convert concepts into actual products, and how waste is recaptured. We looked at finished garments and other pieces that are still in the works.

Rachel is modeling a cape that Carol made from a stained coat.  The cape is decorated with gigantic buttercup flowers and leaves
Rachel tries on the “Buttercup cape,” which started out as a coat with prominent stains.

So now my work is part of the virtual collection at the Fashion History Museum! The interview is posted here on the Museum’s YouTube channel. I hope you enjoy it!

Ready, set, go!

Welcome to my blog! After years of protesting that a blog was the last thing I wanted to be locked into, here I am setting one up. What happened?

I changed my mind.

I was looking for a way to go beyond “This is what I made. Please buy it!” I can’t reduce, re-use, repair, repurpose the whole world on my own. I can’t even hire enough people to make that happen. But if I can help others see the same beauty and creative possibilities around them that I do, then maybe, just maybe, we can start to appreciate what we already have instead of constantly clamouring for more.

So the plan is to share techniques, tools, projects, and inspiration sources, along with whatever else seems right. Some things will work for absolute beginners but that doesn’t mean I won’t also share more advanced stuff.

I’m excited to start this new venture but I still don’t like the thought of being chained to my computer. That’s why I’ve been so resistant to blogging for so long. I loooove my unplugged days and I need them to maintain my (own personal version of) sanity. So please be patient if you leave comments or questions. You’re unlikely to get an immediate response but that doesn’t mean I don’t want to hear from you. I’ll check on things every day or so and you’ll have my full attention then. Thank you for understanding, I hope you keep reading!