Friday 15 November 2013

The Signatures Craft Show, Fall '13: glitz, glamour, and goodies

We hit the Signatures Craft Show at the Ottawa Convention Centre this evening. The show runs all through this weekend, so be sure to head down, because it's a great one this year. It's heavy on the clothes, but not in a bad way: there are tons of great artisans working with repurposed and recycled textiles, and some fabulous weavers and knitters. The price point coincides with the workmanship--meaning, you're not going to walk away with much left in your wallet--but the Signatures Show hosts some of the finest professional artisans around, so you know you're taking home a treasure.

There were a remarkable number of artisans from Montreal, though that doesn't surprise me: Montreal is a hotbed for the arts.

(And for those readers not in Ottawa: there are other Signatures shows across the country. Take a look.)

I have attended this show for many years, but there was definitely a sense of artisans (even the tried-and-true return vendors) trying out new things. Let's take a look at my picks for Best in Show:

Amazing dyed wood bowl, by The Turning Point

Revamped men's blazer by Musky

Skirt made from remnants, by Musky

Incredible knitwork by Olga Saras.

My favourite artist of the night: Olga Cuttell of  Ola Design.

Inspired recycled lamps by Tat.

Another recycled glass lamp by Tat.

A regular and a favourite: pearls by the girls at Ted Devine Jewellers.

Nut-free, taste-tacular truffles by Temptation Truffles (right here from Ottawa!)

Actually wearable and cute kidswear from

Everything Embody makes, I covet.

Outstanding vest and skirt by Embody.

For those people shopping for tiny things or stocking stuffers, you'll likely find your best price point amongst the food vendors, who were primarily the usual suspects. But this is one of those shows where I like to indulge myself and say, "Forget the holiday gifts; I'm gettin' myself something pretty!" It's also a fantastic show for bringing your mate along, and showing him/her what you covet...then eppear to wander away and not notice that your sweetie has lingered behind, doing a quick transaction and getting you that special scarf/dress/necklace/painting.

The show runs through the whole weekend, and is right downtown at the Ottawa Convention Centre. It's just large enough to feel like you need a map to keep track, and just small enough that you run out of steam at the last booth.

I think this may have been the best Signatures show yet. Some incredible new artisans, some oldies with new ideas, and generally about a dozen things I will be pining after for days.

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