The Sweetie Pie Press has been running self-produced multi-month craft tours of North America since 2006. In this undertaking, we are pretty unique - subletting our home, packing up a car, living modestly, giving over the chaos of the world and experiencing the independent art and craft world of North America for four to six straight months.
And we don't even hoard all this experience for ourselves. Nope. The Sweetie Pie Press blog has been documenting and sharing our touring encounters since 2008. Over these years, the blog has become a great and free resource for others seeking a life in the indie world to connect with independent retailers, to learn about artists and to plan outlandish outings of their own. It has become a repository of makers and doers and serves as proof that the unlikely is still possible.
The 2011 tour will take us from coast to coast, as per usual, and will span just shy of four months. Tentative plans already include stops in Austin, Atlanta, New Orleans, Baltimore, Philadelphia, Brooklyn, Providence, Pittsburgh, Columbus, Denver, Eureka, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Phoenix, Bisbee, Albuquerque, Lawrence, Des Moines, Milwaukee, Chicago, Detroit and, of course, Toronto.
Stops on the tour are as varied as the places, towns and cities that house them. While straight-up craft fairs form the skeleton of our itinerary, they are usually peppered with other happenings like interactive skill demonstrations in independent shops and galleries, sitting in windows, sitting on sidewalks, drawing on walls, installing gallery shows and generally interacting with the world. All this with dispatches back to the internet via our blog and other guest blogging stints.
The 2011 tour will also include a stop at the Midwest Craft Caucus, a brand-new initiative hosted by some brilliant craft folks in Columbus, Ohio. At the caucus, I (Becky) will be speaking on topics of craft sustainability, sitting on public panels, running public workshops and participating in open skill and resource sharing with other craft event organizers from throughout middle America.
Frugal travel is a source of pride for us. In fact, these tours would not operate without frugality. We travel with a percolator. We shop in bulk. We try our very best to avoid the trappings of the road (it is hard).
Our tour-launching costs go mostly to mechanical updates to ensure safe and healthy vehicular travel and event submission fees. This year, our start-up costs are larger than ever as we need to make some major improvements when it comes to road safety. These costs will also go towards reducing the emission of travel, which is a huge relief!
Postcards. These will come from the road and from my collection from past travels.
Commissioned Artist Pinback Button Sets. Note: requests accepted but a few of these may become out of print over the course of pledging.
Zines. The 'a cette dame' trilogy, works of dark humour and micro-fiction.
Tour Zine. This zine is, clearly, not made yet but will include photographs, stories and found materials from the road. It will also include appendices of indie boutiques, shops and galleries I have visited as well as a list of North American craft fairs. Part auto-documentary zine, part resource zine!
Worksite Accidents. Diptych print.
Banners. They will go on the blog here. Banners can be shorter than the listed heights as long as they are 150px wide. I can also help you make your cyber love banner.
Crocheted Triangle/ From Hive Series.
Installation. From the Security Envelope Project
Big Note: If you want to pledge for multiple rewards, just pledge the total amount, choose a reward (if you want a limited one, choose that), send me a message and I can add a note to your pledge to include the other goodies. Easy peasy.
Postcards will arrive as a surprise to you at some point before the end of the 2011 calendar year.
All craft package rewards (button sets, prints, zines and combo packs) will be shipped by the end of June 2011.
All bulk orders (large packs of loose buttons) will ship by the end of May 2011.
All digital rewards (your name or message) will be delivered electronically by the end of the 2011 calendar year.
2011 tour zines will be made after the tour and shipped by the end of the 2011 calendar year.
Blog banners will be posted May 1, 2011 (or when they are received, if after that date) and will remain online through the end of September 2011.
Large scale installation and crochet works will, likewise, be delivered by the end of 2011. These pieces will be custom made.
If you can think of a reward that you would like that I have not listed here (no indecent proposals, please), just email me.
Likewise, comments and questions can all be emailed as well.
I thank you all very much for reading all of this and to Kickstarter for offering even the possibility of making this dream a reality.
- (31 days)