Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Craft Shows Recap - Etsy/West Elm and Boston Bazaar Bizarre Winter 2011

That has been a busy week but it was also a fun week!
The Etsy/West Elm pop-up Holiday shop at the Burlington location (MA) on Thursday December 1st was very nice and also a great occasion for me to explore new territories as I made some specific pieces for this event.
I made some animal decorative pillows that looked really cool on their sofas! Check it out in the pics below.
Owls, elephants, penguins, fish, crocodile... there was a whole menagerie there :)

A big Thank You to Etsy and West Elm for organizing this event especially to Kate Downey the West Elm/Burlington MA store manager and all the staff as well as to Vanessa Bertozzi, Director of Community and Education at Etsy.
 I am looking forward to do this again soon!


Then on Sunday the 4th there was the amazing Boston Bazaar Bizarre craft fair!
As usual it was really good and very busy.
I had a fantastic time and I'm already looking forward to do it again next year :)
I had the opportunity to test some new designs which is always good as there is nothing better than getting comments directly from your customers!
I had a lot of positive feedbacks and want to thank everyone for their support and kind words about my work, it means the world to me and it is what keeps me going so a big THANK YOU to you!
Here are a few pics... one of them with my son who came to see "Mama's plush show" :)
A little display rehearsal at home before the show...

The Muscle Marcel plushies are quietly observing the crowd! The one with the red stripes and the heart and dagger tattoo found a new home soon after :)

Here I am with my son Jack without the inspiration of whom a lot of these plush wouldn't exist...

Happy "Bad Mood Eating Monsters", elephants and penguins enjoying the spotlights.

Here is my newest design, the fish pillow. In from is my little happy crocodile with his own habitat :)

A big Thank You again to the organizers of BBB who were extremely helpful and attentive.
I really felt like they rolled out the red carpet for us crafters this year and it is rare enough to be mentioned and applauded :)
Another big Thank You too to my customers and all the people I had the pleasure to chat with, I really enjoyed meeting you and am looking forward to see you again soon in my little Etsy shop!

Happy Holidays!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

West Elm + Etsy Holiday pop-up shop tonight!

The West Elm / Etsy pop-up Holiday shop event is tonight at the Boston and Burlington locations!
Come see me at the Burlington location. I have some new designs made exclusively for this event... here is a sneak peak :)
All hand sewn animal decorative pillows!
Come see it first hand tonight, from 6 to 9pm.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

It's a Handmade Holiday event - A West Elm / Etsy pop up shop!

I have the honor to have been selected to be a featured artist at West Elm's Burlington MA location this Thursday night from 6 to 9pm for their Holiday pop-up shop event! This is an event that has been organized by both West Elm and Etsy.
My fellow crafters at Boston Handmade will be at the Boston location for a "Handmade Holiday Workshop" on the same day and at the same time.... it's going to be tough to choose but just stop by your closest location, say hello and support local artists who all encourage you to buy hand made for the Holidays!

And since we are talking about handmade here is a link to Boston Handmade's upcoming events I want to share with you!

Anne-Claire aka Hibou

Friday, November 11, 2011

Buy Handmade for the Holidays! - Getting ready for Boston Bazaar Bizarre!


The Holiday season is starting soon and I have been sewing up a storm! Please take a look and commit to "Buy Handmade for the Holidays!"
I will be at the Boston Bazaar Bizarre on December 4th!
Here is a sneak peek at the plush goodies you will see there :)

Yep these are voodoo dolls!....

So if you are in or around Boston book your Sunday December 4th and come see me and lots of other amazing vendors at the Boston Bazaar Bizarre craft fair! It is the best way to kick off your Christmas shopping and do a good deed by buying handmade and local creations.

Pass the word around!
Thanks folks,
Anne-Claire aka Hibou

Monday, October 31, 2011

New shop name on Etsy and news

Hello and Happy Halloween to all of you!

Etsy recently allowed us to change our shop name and I took advantage of this opportunity to turn Hiboucards into HibouDesigns!
The old link will still work and direct you to the newly renamed shop. I have changed my shop name everywhere I could but was not able to do so on my Flickr account which will still give the old name.

As for the news you'll be able to find me this weekend at our Jamaica Plain newly created craft fair which is called JP Rocks and Rolls. It will take place at the Spontaneous Celebration building on Sunday November 6th from 12 to 4pm!
Come and check it out, it should be fun :)


Boston Handmade's interview

Here is the interview I gave to Boston Handmade as I am now a new member of their group!
Oh and Happy Halloween everyone :)

"My name is Anne-Claire and I'm a new member of Boston Handmade :)
If you want to learn a bit more about me and my work feel free to read the answers to the questions asked below.
Thanks for welcoming me into your group.

- Tell us a bit about yourself:
My name is Anne-Claire Regan but I often go by Hibou (“eeboo”) which means “owl” in French. My shop’s name on Etsy is HibouDesigns and I live and work in Jamaica Plain MA. My husband and I moved from NY about 7 years ago but I am originally from France.
We have a little boy… scratch that… we have a big boy named Jack who just turned 5 and we have a happy bilingual/bicultural family (from Tours France to Princeton New Jersey… never a dull moment!).

- What is your background?
I went to the Ecole du Louvre in Paris where I majored in Art History and Egyptian Archeology. I then moved to New York where I did a Master degree on the "business" side of Art at the FIT. I worked in contemporary art galleries for a while and then in an amazing Decorative Arts Gallery before I moved to Boston. That is not going to sound very original but I had always loved Art, design and anything creative in general. I was always making things from clothes for my dolls when I was little to greeting cards for my friends and family later… (told you it wasn't original ;) There finally came a time when I decided to give it a shot and actually create full time… Plush making is my life now.
All boring things aside though I really think my background helped fuel my creativity. Also I'm French (nobody's perfect ;) which adds a touch of kookiness to the mix… according to my husband.
My family is actually a great source of inspiration too. My husband is a musician and always helps me find the best names for my plush characters. As for my son Jack who is 5, he just always has great unexpected comments on what I do and his world inspires me on a daily basis.

- Apart from creating things, what do you do?
If I don’t make things I get cranky so I’m always making something (whether it's for real or just in my head)!
I’m also a real book worm and couldn’t live without music.

- What first made you want to become an artist?
The amazing art exhibitions my mom took me to in Paris when I was little. I particularly remember the Douanier Rousseau one, it was so incredible.

- What is the first thing you can remember making by hand?  How and why did you make it?
A cone puppet covered with felt and that you could move with a wooden stick and a little clay mold that represented the stables of Augias (episode from the greek mythology of Heracles’ 12 labors). I loved those art classes and I believe that’s where it all started for me.

- What's your favorite color?
I love all bright colors but as far as colors to wear I like black and fuschia.

- What are your favorite materials?
I mostly work with felt. I also use vintage buttons and fabrics from France.
I love felt because it is very versatile, the possibilities are endless. The fact that it comes in so many colors never cease to amaze me. This is what makes me most happy in my creating process, to just sit there on the floor surrounded with all my felt and try to find a good color combo for a new plush!
The second thing that makes me happy is to forage into my vintage button stash. They were all given to me by my mom and my grandmas back in France and I love them dearly because they all have a story…. I can spend a lot of time just looking at them and think about what type of a second life they will have.
Finally my dearest treasure and most favorite thing to use when I have the opportunity is the big box of vintage lace, ribbon and fabric my grandma Paulette gave me last year. Some of it is really old and came from great aunts… I feel really lucky to be able to use it today in my designs.

- What do you love most about what you make?
The freedom to make what I want

- What is your biggest obstacle with it?
The freedom to make what I want ;)

- Are there other mediums you’re not working in that interest you? 
Yes, I would like to explore with fabric you can paint on but I don't know if I'll ever get around to it and some people are already doing it very well! I think the best example for this can be found at the amazing shop called CartBeforetheHorse. I own one of Dylan and Jo's work and I'm looking forward to collect some more.

- What accomplishment are you most proud of in your work?
To have my work published in the pages of Stuffed magazine alongside amazingly talented people! My creations are currently in the Summer issue 2011 and they’ll be again (jumping up and down in excitement!) in the Winter 2012 issue.

- What’s your most interesting fair/show experience?
I am very happy to be part of the excellent plush art show called Plush You! for the second time around at Kristen Rask's gallery/shop Schmancy in Seattle.
I'm also excited to have been selected for Boston Bazaar Bizarre again this year. This is a really good craft show and there is nothing I like more than meeting my clients in person.

- Why should people buy handmade?
Because handmade objects have a soul.

- Name a few of your favorite books, movies, songs/musical groups, and food.
All Radiohead, Dave Brubeck’s Koto Song, any book by Stefan Zweig, can’t choose a favorite painting because I like too many, There will be Blood or any movie with Daniel Day Lewis, chocolate and anything from a pig (I'm French and I cannot live without pate, ham, saucisson, bacon... now I'm hungry ;).

- Read any good books lately?
Philip Kerr – the Berlin trilogy (and now reading the following ones)

- If you were an animal, which one would you be?
A cat... my maiden name being Minet this really fits me!

- What’s your favorite way to spend a Sunday morning?
Reading the paper or a magazine with a latte and an awesome breakfast (with bacon!).

I think that's about it for now.
Feel free to contact me if you have any questions (or tweet me hello!) and check out my shop which is now called HibouDesigns (Etsy recently allowed us to change our shop name if we wished and I changed mine from Hiboucards to HibouDesigns). You can also see my whole portfolio on my Flickr account.

Happy crafting!
Anne-Claire aka Hibou"

Monday, October 17, 2011

Plush You! 2011 has opened!

[ Adding a link to Jessica's PlushroomSoup blog where she posted photos of the show since she was able to go to the opening! Check it out it's awesome :)  ]

The new edition of the Plush You! show opened this past Friday in Seattle at the amazing Schmancy gallery which is owned by the great Kristen Rask.
I was not able to attend the opening this year but my plush were there to represent me :)
All the plush will be on sale on the Plush You! website soon! and you can read my interview on this link if you want to know more :)
 Madame Clofullia the Bearded Lady and her amazing Strongman!

All my plush are hand sewn with lots of care and love! Run to Schmancy if you can to see all the amazing plush on display, there are so many talented artists there you will be blown away!
You can check out Kristen's Flickr page in the meantime if you can't make it there, I'm sure she will have some pictures up soon!


Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Stuffed Magazine Summer 2011.... I'm in!

I'm back from my vacation trip to France where I was spending time with my family and I had the great pleasure to find my copy of Stuffed magazine's current issue :)
I am featured in the gallery with  three owls and in a special article about our Plushteam's special project challenge, Frankenplush Scrapenstein (we should have an article about it in our website soon).
This is my first time being published in this magazine and I am very excited about it as I consider it an honor to be part of a pool of such amazingly talented people! This issue is a real eye candy and is worth the money because it is a magazine you will want to keep.... so hurry up and go get your copy now :)

Here are some pictures I took of my pieces before sending them to Stuffed. They are called:
The Gentleman Thief, The Detective and Lady Daisy!

As usual all the buttons are French vintage and it is all hand sewn!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Sailors and muscle shirts! Plush by the sea...

I seem to be inspired by the sea lately and here is what I came up with :)

This one I made as an homage to my grandpa, Pierre... who was not a sailor but whose sailor hat used to be the source of endless role playing and laughter when it was pulled out of the coat closet when I was little! Oh and of course he was as Breton (from Brittany, France) as can be, from Lorient :)

I'm very excited about this little fella! His name is Muscle Marcel. Marcel is strong, manly, cute, and he loves his mommy... so what?!
I intend on making more versions of this one as it was great fun to make, all hand sewn as usual :)

And since we're in the nautical theme here is a window full of plush sea animals for you to enjoy! If you live in or around Minneapolis, make sure to check out the window of Crafty planet! Their new theme for the window is "Sea Creatures" and a bunch of us in the Plush Team answered the call and made some pretty cool items for them. Check it out. 
(PS: as far as I know all the pieces are for sale)

Turtle made by me :) Tiny Octopus made by a Crafty Planet member.
Starfishes, rocks and plants by Mary from Arttales/Leftz -
Jellyfish by Crafty planet member
Awesome giant octopus monster by Jessica at PlushroomSoup

Thanks for reading :)

Friday, April 15, 2011

Spring is here!

It looks like Spring finally decided to settle in Boston... it was about time! The magnolia trees are almost in bloom and the sun is gently warming us up.
That inspired me a series of colorful and fun plush :)
Happy Spring to you all!

To see more go to my shop :)

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Bunny Show coming up!

What's not to love about stuffed bunnies?
Check out this great gallery exhibit filled with plush bunnies from floor to ceiling :)
The Opening is on April 9th but if you cannot attend make sure to check out the Eve-N-Odd website to see pictures! And if you see something you like, give Jennifer a buzz and she will tell you how to acquire your favorite bunny :) Happy Easter!


Ok so I must admit I'm not as dedicated as I once said I would be to this blogging thing... But I will not beat myself up and will once again recommit to commit.... 

On the news front I just want to give a big shout to the amazing PlushTeam, which I'm so honored to be a part of, for pulling off the best plush retreat ever!!!! 
From March 31st to April 3rd 2011, we were 17 girls in a log cabin in Luray Virginia, with only 3 bathrooms and lots of potential weapons (scissors, felting needles, crochets....).... and nothing happened! At least no drama, but instead lots of giggles and silliness and brain storming and plush making and general plain awesomeness :)
This was our cabin... pretty cool!
...and this was our view! I know, life is hard :)
As you can see we were all hard at work and the place turned into a crafty mess in no time. There was a lot of plush making going on of course and the infamous Taco Night!
Needle felting class led by Amy of Squirrel Momma

Hard at work at our converted dinner table :)
Crafty mess living room with a mountain of supply at the forefront :)

And the infamous Taco Night! Our mascot PT Stitchy really enjoyed himself as you can see!

This was an amazing experience and I feel truly blessed to be part of such an awesome group of women, all talented, all crafty, all devoted to our team! Thank you :)