My first SF craft fair

So, A Fair to Remember was on Sunday. I was really nervous for my first time vending in San Francisco, but really excited to be in such a cute spot.

People kept stopping to photograph the mural behind me.

Though I was expecting chilly and windy weather, I ended up actually getting fried in the sunshine. Go figure.

Jack Kerouac alley was flooded with tourists, cute couples, older ladies from Chinatown, and just about everyone else you could pack into the space. I could not stop staring at this person’s laundry floating above us. Can you imagine having your undies out there?

I was reminded once again that crafty people everywhere are wonderful and supportive of each other. In this picture you can see Abi, one of the organizers, with her cute vintage wares, and on the left is Errol, one of the ‘soap guys’ from Metaphor Organic.

I ended up getting some man soap for Mike. I was intrigued by their explanation of the chemical process of making soap. Apparently most soap you see in stores in not actually soap!

I learned a lot and met a lot of people. I am inspired to try making some new accessories.

Oh, and I just had to share a photo of the band that played for about an hour. They were awesome! The Paper Dolls play a mix of new and old songs on their ukuleles.

I love them and their stripey socks.

Vintage container gardening

As soon as I saw this article, I knew what I had to do with my bare front porch.

I had a minimal budget for gardening, but I already had both an old wooden soda crate and a wooden ammo box, plus a bunch of succulents growing in the front ‘yard’. Mike had always imagined the ammo box overflowing with pinkish flowers — the perfect ironic planter.

But first I started with the soda crate. Since the slats in the bottom had big openings, I decided to plant a succulent in each slot in its own little container. And I discovered that empty yogurt cups out of the recycling bin were the perfect width, as long as I cut the rims off. You just poke a little hole in the bottoms for drainage.

They were a little too short, though, so I used some pieces of egg cartons to boost them up.

I filled them about halfway with some sandy/rocky soil I got from the side of our house (which I ended up covering in weed blocker and mulch later on in the weekend).

I very delicately separated out a few plants down to their roots and replanted them in the yogurt containers. Then I popped them into the soda crate.

I was about to stop the project when I ran out of yogurts. But when I went to Home Depot I discovered a section devoted to succulents of all shapes and sizes and I pretty much cleaned them out. I am a fiend for those things.

I still didn’t have quite enough to fill the crate, but I discovered the succulent secret: some of them have more than one plant per pot. I managed to get three of them to separate into two plants, just enough to finish my project. I also tucked in some old soda bottles. And after topping off the containers with potting soil, I covered the tops with peat moss so that you couldn’t see the tops of the plastic containers.

I am so happy with how it turned out.

Sometimes your crafty vision really does turn out exactly how you thought it would.

For the ammo box, I lined the bottom with three 8×8 cheap foil trays and added rocky soil to the bottom for good drainage. Then I just bought a half flat of colorful annuals that like shade and planted them inside. After a couple days they perked right up. In fact everything I’ve planted has been super happy so far. Yay!

No more weeds! Whew.

Have you used any fun objects as planters? I always see this one house when I’m out walking with a bathtub planter and it makes me smile.