Girl’s Day Out

I had a wonderful day out with one of my dearest artist friends today. We went to the annual “Gathering of the Guilds” at the Oregon Convention Center in N Portland. There are four guilds represented: the Glass Workers, Textiles, Woodworkers, and Metal Workers. My first introduction to this event was with the same girlfriend, on the occasion of her birthday last year. She threw a party for herself which involved several of us going with her to the art show and then treating ourselves to lunch at one of Portland’s many food cart pods. This year was a little quieter despite the fact that it is (again) my friend’s birthday: it was just the two of us.

The artwork was inspiring and fascinating. I’ll skip over most of it, not because it was boring (it wasn’t), but because it is irrelevant for today’s real inspiration. We have slightly different tastes and often migrated to different vendors: Mary is a gifted bead artist and I like odd things (found a wonderful artist who makes interesting resin casts). We came across an artist who creates beautiful 3-D frames out of the discards of laser-cut wood. No photo because I didn’t take my camera with me. Suffice it to say that one piece had a price tag of over $1,000. It was beautiful.

But here’s the kicker: he was selling bags and bundles of the same stuff he uses to make those works of art.


That, and this:


My friend purchased two bags of the small stuff and one bundle of the larger sheets. It may be awhile before anything actually gets created out of these bundles, but I certainly have some ideas on how to move forward.

That was all we bought at the show. We wandered south, had a snack at Burgerville, and stopped in at one of our favorite thrift stores.


I’ve been looking for the right stones to make a stair case for the current project I am stymied on: a tea pot faerie house that needs stone stairs leading up to the top where the fay resident can enter the pot (aka “Home Sweet Home”). I looked at a lot of spendier rocks at the Convention Center, only to find this vase full of interesting items at the thrift store.


Divided out onto the floor, I found I had the size of rocks I was looking for – PLUS.


generic little rocks


a single “Superball” – who remembers those?


A number of standard glass “rocks” you can buy at a craft store or the Dollar Store.


Wait. Are those marbles? Tumbled in a tumbler until they are flat on one side? Hm. Fascinating.


Brightly polished agates.


Iron pyrite and a number of fairly nice quartz crystals. I set these two piles aside for some future creation (especially the Fool’s Gold).


There were even three flat stones with messages. Not sure how I’ll incorporate them into the faerie house, but who knows? I believe that you find things because they need to be included.


Last, I found a broken wind chime. It isn’t hard to fix a wind chime and the resin cast part isn’t broken, so my best guess is whoever tossed it simply didn’t want to listen to the chimes anymore. Or they were just plain too lazy to find a replacement pipe. I’ll repaint it to make the hummingbird more like the ones who visit my feeders (Anna’s Hummingbird being the most common). I love wind chimes, so that missing piece will be replaced.

I’m still procrastinating on the current faerie house, but I’m feeling like the muse is beginning to move and the project will finally get off the ground.

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