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Appalachian Spring cranks up its spiffy white Yule Bug and drapes its signature “Celebrate American Craft” banner along the side to serve as its “float” in the annual Reston Town Center Christmas parade.

CREDIT: COURTESY OF RESTON TOWN CENTER

Kick-Starting Christmas with Community Events

Kick-Starting Christmas with Community Events

When communities celebrate, businesses prosper, and Christmas is an ideal time for craft shops and galleries to join wholeheartedly in citywide holiday festivities. With opportunities ranging from storefront decorating and window display contests to street caroling and sponsored floats in Yuletide parades, small business retailers have readymade opportunities to join the fun, show their community spirit and entice post-events revelers into their stores.

Gatski Moose Head

Christmas Checklist

As of July 1, there are 177 shopping days until Christmas. Take stock now with this quick checklist: Start a wish list. If you haven’t developed one yet, now’s the time. Once you have one, refer to it often. It will keep you on track, no matter how chaotic your schedule becomes.

Santa with a serious point of view, from Bunny with a Toolbelt http://bunnywithatoolbelt.com/.

Holiday Reminders

There’s nothing in this list that you probably don’t already know. But they all bear repeating, especially as we head into the most critical retail selling season of the year.

Colin sports velveteen leggings and carries a cotton sack filled with aromatic Maine balsam.

So These Are Santa’s Elves?

In Norse folklore, there are creatures called Nisse, elusive elf-like beings who dwell in the woodlands and lend unseen but helpful hands to people who live there. At Christmas time, Norwegians offer small gifts of affection and recognition to the elves to ensure their continued kindness. That’s the kind of folk story the Solli sisters, Marie and Anne, grew up hearing from their Norwegian father.

CERF 3D Charts 1

What 3,500 Working Artists Really Think About the Word ‘Craft’

Most craft artists have grown weary of the long-running conversation about art vs. craft. As far as CERF+ is concerned, that conversation ended long ago. The work of craft artists is art, as valid as any other art form. Its special qualities—the transformation of materials into objects of great beauty, its connection to tradition even in contemporary forms, and the skills that it requires—distinguish craft from other art forms.

w:stats box, if needed:Fetty, Jeff - Jeff in shop

CERF+ Survey Demographics

Just who are the artists who responded to the CERF+ 2013 Sustaining Careers survey? Here’s a quick breakdown: EDUCATION — More than three quarters of the survey respondents (77%) were college graduates, 40% with a four-year degree and 37% with a graduate degree. Fourteen percent had some college, 5% two-year college certificate and 4% high school or technical school.

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