Monday, June 30, 2008


It's a mechanical bull!

No, it's a rocking horse!

No, it's gym equipment!


It's The Equicizer!

Designed for horse racers and people needing therapeutic exercise, the Equicizer is hand-crafted by "jockey/inventor" Frank Lovato Jr., in Ohio.

I'm still not entirely sure what it is, but I think I want one... Giddy-up!

Big hat tip to Perry for linking this in his Facebook status today. Gotta love ye olde internet!

Posted by Amy Shaw for Greenjeans.
Images sourced here.

Updating the Blog

I will be updating the template for Greenjeans Blog this evening, so if you are seeing a big mess right now, that's why!

All should be functioning by Tuesday morning.

Thanks for your patience!

Tree Paintings

My Bloglines feed was glitchy this morning, offering up lots of posts from 2006, including this one from Craft: Magazine's blog about some very artistic trees...

It is such a poetic, off-the-wall idea -- tying crayons to the boughs of pine trees and setting easels before them -- that I think it warrants re-posting. (This would be a fun summertime activity to do with kids, too!)

My only question is: are trees better painters than elephants...?

Via the ever-clever Garth Johnson of Extreme Craft.

Posted by Amy Shaw for Greenjeans.
Images via Extreme Craft.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Add YOUR Pics to Greenjeans' New Online Photo Album!

Do you have something from Greenjeans that you LOVE to use at home?

Snap a picture and send it in!

We are compiling an on-line album called Greenjeans at Home with pictures of your...

- favorite dishes set on your table...
- wine barrel folding chair in your backyard...

- child playing with his or her favorite toy...

- earrings adorning your ear or displayed on your dresser...

- and more!

Upload your pictures directly into our Flickr Group or just email them to us and we'll put them up.

We might even use your picture on our website (with your permission of course)...

Thanks for sharing how much you love living with beautifully handmade objects from Greenjeans!

Check out the Greenjeans at Home photo album at:

Posted and photo by Amy Shaw for Greenjeans.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

New York City Waterfalls

Tomorrow morning at 7am, four huge waterfalls will start flowing along the East River in NYC, and I, a big fan of big public art, am beside myself with excitement!

Created by Danish-Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson (profiled in the New York Times recently), the New York City Waterfalls will be big, brash, and beautiful as they cascade beneath the Brooklyn Bridge and elsewhere between Brooklyn and Manhattan.

Highly designed to protect wildlife and consume minimal energy, the Waterfalls are built without artifice -- you can clearly see the structure that supports them, which I expect will be quite upstaged by the frothing, cascading water. The Waterfalls will run through October 13.

Learn more about them at, and stay tuned to the blog for my pics...!

Posted by Amy Shaw for Greenjeans. Image sourced here.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Report from the Renegade Craft Fair 2008

Many thanks to guest blogger Stephanie Carter (with additional reporting by Lauren Rosenblum) for taking great pictures and writing keen observations of the Renegade Craft Fair last weekend!

Steph and Lauren are good friends from grad school and wonderful writers, each with a taste for all things art/craft/design. Moreover Steph and I went to Renegade together two years ago, so she was reviewing the show as a veteran. I knew she was just the woman for the job when I realized I couldn't attend the fair myself.

I love Steph's finds, and her smart, fresh comments. Her coverage gave me a great taste of the fair, as I hope it does for you. So without further ado...!

Mustaches are the new owl. That was my observation at this year’s Renegade Craft Fair, held in McCarren Pool in Williamsburg. You know how, for a while, everywhere you turned, crafts—T-shirts, notebooks, jewelry, stationary, whatever—featured an owl… or a squirrel… or a deer. Well, there were still plenty of woodland creatures at the fair. But I also saw a lot of mustaches.

Mustaches? “Like a lot of the men in attendance had mustaches,” you’re thinking. No. I mean, the crafts featured mustaches. There were large, carved wooden mustaches to hang on the wall. There were little mustaches to use as a key chain, mustache brooches and mustache necklaces. Necklaces. I must admit I don’t see the attraction of wearing the shape men’s facial hair around one’s neck. But mustaches were certainly popular; plan on seeing them a lot in the coming months.

Before I left for the fair, I was listening to NPR’s Studio 360 with Kurt Andersen. This week’s show featured an interview with artist Fritz Haeg. Haeg takes the typical, suburban, water-guzzling front yard and turns it into a vegetable or flower garden. He goes around the country and does this for various people’s front yards.

Kurt asked him why we should consider this "art" and not, you know, gardening. I couldn’t help but connect his response to the Renegade Craft Fair. He said that it’s easy, and at this point, cliché, to create something subversive using sex or violence. But he was interested in creating subversion out of everyday items, like a front yard. Or, with DIY products like the ones at the fair—knitting, letterpresses, ceramics, etc. Because these days, what’s more subversive than resisting our mass-produced, consumer-centric society than by creating and purchasing goods that are hand-made and one of a kind?

And with that, I’ll let you take a look at a few items that caught my eye and draw your conclusions about craft and subversion at the Renegade Craft Fair, with additional reporting by Lauren Rosenblum.

Ex Libris Anonymous Journals - Made from old books, the journals feature the actual covers of the books both inside and out. Here’s one made from a Hitchcock book for kids. The journals feature little details like book card inside left over from the previous owner. The journals also have a few pages of the original book before the blank journal pages start.

Because who doesn’t need a Bob Marley or Marvin Gaye suitcase? Imagine one of these guys rolling around the baggage carousel at JFK…
[Anyone know who did these? If so, email me and I'll put up the name and link.]

I saw these “stuffed” deer heads as a tongue-in-cheek take on the ubiquitous deer heads that appeared everywhere in home décor this past year. Plus, they’re soft and plush and colorful. [Anyone know who did these? If so, email me and I'll put up the name and link.]

This nightlight and wall hanging were at Fondue Art + Design. All of their pieces are made with vintage wallpaper. I loved the bright and colorful Pennsylvania Dutch feeling of these two things.

Measuring spoons, cheese board and holiday ornament from Beehive Kitchenware. Beehive’s stuff stood out from a lot of the other crafts at the fair. The lines and design were clean and happy, without a hint of irony. Their products are all hand-crafted using traditional methods and tools.

From Etui… I bought the cat card because it looks like my cat. But Etui’s prints stood out among the various stationary and printed materials. The eye-popping colors and stylized graphics just grab your attention and pull you in. And the lady bathers in their retro swimsuits were irresistible.

Screen-printed T from Supermaggie. There was no end to the screen-printed T-shirt selection. While Maggie’s aesthetic didn’t differ too much from the others’ at the fair, her designs and prints were more sophisticated and detailed; the amount of thought that goes into her products is clear.

Straw ribbon accessories by Cathy of California. These attracted my attention because there wasn’t anything else like them at the fair.

Typewrite Key Jewelry: Clever use of something from a bygone era. There were crowds at this booth throughout the fair. [Anyone know who did these? If so, email me and I'll put up the name and link.]

Delong Ceramics, one of the few ceramics vendors I saw. Their tiles and ornaments feature quintessential NYC scenes, like the above from the Brooklyn Bridge and the New York Public Library. It’s hard not to marvel at the level of detail these ceramics feature.

Nesting doll throw pillow made from felt and fabric by Kimberly Lewis.

Mustache necklaces. [Anyone know who did these? If so, email me and I'll put up the name and link.]

Thank you again, Steph!

Renegade Craft Fair 2007 (Brooklyn)
Renegade Craft Fair 2006 (Brooklyn)

Writing by Stephanie Carter and posted by Amy Shaw for Greenjeans.
Images by Stephanie Carter or sourced from given websites.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Greenjeans' Last Day in Park Slope

Three years and 446 posts ago, I started this blog to record the experience of starting and running Greenjeans.

So I want to take a moment to mark this day, our last in Park Slope, as the first chapter of our Greenjeans Adventure comes to a close.

Before I do, please note that I’ll be taking a little time off this week and won’t be blogging. But when I return, look forward to coverage of the Renegade Craft Fair by guest blogger Stephanie Carter, and more details about our evolving ideas about the next phase of Greenjeans. So do stay tuned!

Now, as excited and confident as I feel about our next steps with Greenjeans, it is also, predictably, a day of mixed emotions. I feel nostalgic for the (not so) old shop already, its goldenrod brick wall, the cabinets and long shelves my Dad built, the curtain at the back made just for us from reclaimed blue men's shirts and the tabs at the top made from collars. I'll miss sitting with Jae, bent over our twin Macs, in the pressed-wood chairs at the red-edged table. The table and chairs belonged to my parents when they first got married. They bought them as antiques while Dad was in the Air Force in Michigan. (We could have sold those chairs and table a thousand times if they had been for sale!)

It has been a great pleasure coming to our spot in the South Slope day after day, enjoying the neighborhood and being part of the community. We have loved watching little kids stop to count the row of Jane Kaufmann’s raku clay finger puppets lined up in the front window. We’ve loved having long conversations with regular customers, some of whom have become good friends. And we have loved being neighbors with Shoe Mine, Vespa, Pomona, Chickpeas, and until recently Rare Device, all unsurpassed for their neighborliness and friendship (especially Rena, Temah, and Lori!) We will miss being there with you all every day, and seriously hope we don’t lose touch.

A few more thoughts demand noting, like the countless bacon-egg-and-cheeses from Bagel Hole, falafel sandwiches from Olive Vine, and cups of coffee from Parco we’ve consumed. The wine shop with its consistently reliable “cheap & tasty” bins, the constantly tempting dress shops up and down 7th Avenue, the music store (Music Matters) with the devoted owner who worked circles around us. The deli, the other deli, the fancy deli. Pumpkin’s Organic Market. Knowing Prospect Park was only two blocks away, though we rarely managed to take advantage of it.

All these thoughts flood my mind and make me feel melancholy about today. I think some customers have felt the same way. Lots of them have been coming in since we announced our relocation, and so many have expressed disappointment or surprise. But the encouragement and good wishes we’ve been receiving these past few weeks has been even more overwhelming. We are really sorry to be going, but it is so nice to be loved!

We’ve tried to get the word out about this transition, but still I hate the thought of someone coming after we’ve closed and thinking we’ve gone out of business.

Because the Greenjeans Adventure continues.

In fact it doesn’t even stop.

Posted by Amy Shaw for Greenjeans.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Killah Beez Luvs Greenjeans

Miss Alina of Killah Beez, the bi-coastal blog covering "Art, Beats, Fashion and Lifestyle," stopped in yesterday to check out what she thought was a shop for organic denim (not the first time that's happened), and walked out our newest fan!

She loved everything from our unusual jewelry collection to Anders Bergstrom's fresh take on the common coaster.

And she put up a sweet post this morning, which you can see RIGHT HERE!

Thanks, Alina!

Posted by Amy Shaw for Greenjeans.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Renegade Craft Fair & West Coast Visitors

This afternoon, just as I was about to post a reminder that the Renegade Craft Fair is this weekend...

Renegade Craft Fair
McCarren Park Pool
(Williamsburg, Brooklyn)
June 14 & 15, 11am-7pm

... the vintage craft genius Cathy Callahan (aka Cathy of California) and friends came by to check out the shop!

Cathy (second from left) and I know each other from the blogosphere and emails, but hadn't met before in person. I'm so glad to have met her today!

Cathy's friends from Portland came along for the visit. Of course I had to take their picture for the blog! At left and center here are Greg and Cathy Pitters (Cathy is the beat behind Bossa Nova Baby and runs Portland's monthly craft and art fair Crafty Wonderland), and at right are Ryan and Lucy Berkley (he of Berkley Illustration and she of Lucy Bird Photos).

They will ALL be at Renegade, so be sure to check their booths! They're all on Etsy too, natch.

We talked about how Portland is like the West Coast's Brooklyn (or is Brooklyn the East Coast's Portland?) and I helped them plot their route to check out Dumbo and walk the Brooklyn Bridge. We collectively hoped that it wouldn't rain this weekend -- the Renegade, being as it held in an old pool, tends to get a little flooded when it rains...

I won't be able to attend Renegade this year, as it's our LAST WEEKEND IN PARK SLOPE and we've got some serious packing to do, so I'm extra glad for this visit!

Thanks for making the trek, guys! Next year hopefully we'll be in a location that's way easier to get to...

Posted and photo by Amy Shaw for Greenjeans.
Owl is the Renegade Craft Fair's icon.

Call for Entries - Craft USA Triennial

Jae spotted this on NYFA's website yesterday...

Craft USA
Silvermine Guild Arts Center
(New Canaan CT)


CRAFT USA National Craft Triennial, November 15 - December 23, 2008.

Juror: Gretchen Keyworth, Director and Chief Curator, Fuller Craft Museum

Awards: 1st Prize $1000 plus

Eligibility: U.S. artists 18+; basketry, ceramics, fiber, glass, jewelry, metal, mixed media, paper, and wood

Deadline for ALL Entries: August 15th, 2008

Entry Fee: $30 entry fee for up to 3 works (1 detail of each is allowable)

For Prospectus, download from website at

Posted by Amy Shaw for Greenjeans.

Monday, June 09, 2008

Tattoos Exposed at the Brooklyn Flea

"Wow, did you see that tattoo?"

"Woah, that's amazing! Hey look at that one, and THAT one!"

"Awesome! Jeez, it seems like EVERYONE has a tattoo in Brooklyn."

"Seriously! Or maybe, now that it's like 100 degrees out, we're just seeing more SKIN at the Flea..."

Hence the inspiration for this week's coverage of the Brooklyn Flea. From the vantage of Greenjeans' booth, Lumin and I shot surreptitious (and sometimes posed) pictures of the cornucopia of tattoos we saw on the glistening limbs of passers-by.

It helped keep our minds off the liquefying heat and the fact that sales were s-l-o-w -- evidently it was too hot to shop! We can hardly believe that two months ago we were bundled up in parkas...

We shot SO MANY interesting tattoos that I made a Flickr slideshow. But here are a couple to give you a taste -- I especially like the alphabet tattooed on the leg of our neighbor Reine and the ruler up the arm of her friend.

We're on hiatus from the Flea until July 13, but we'll see you there then!

Want to see more? Click here!
Posted by Amy Shaw for Greenjeans.
Photos by Amy Shaw and Lumin Wakoa

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Father's Day Gift Guide

When's the last time you gave Dad something really special for Father's Day? Something other than, say, a new tie or a can of nuts?

This year we invite you to come to Greenjeans and select something really nice for Dad. Something he'll have for a long time and, whenever he uses it, will think fondly of you.

At a loss for ideas? Here are some suggestions:

[Pictured Top Right]
For the Writerly Dad:
Handbound Journal by Dennis Yuen ($64-78).

For the Beer- and Art-loving Dad:
Limited Edition Coasters by Brooklyn artist Anders Bergstrom ($12 for box of 8).

For the Dad who wears French Cuffs:
Clever Cufflinks and other "Mannery" by Connie Verrusio ($50-114)

For the Dad who Just Luvs George Dubya:
"Mistakes Were Made"
Limited Edition Sculpture by Brooklyn editorial cartoonist James Williamson ($100).

For the Dad who Appreciates Fine Craftsmanship:
Hardwood Totes with Handcut(!) Dovetails by David Emerson (Special price: $68-100)

For the Dad who Loves the Feel of Wood:
Folding Letter Openers by Jay O'Boxes (left) and Natural Wood Letter Openers by Dan Dustin (right) ($170 and $35).

For the Dad who Likes to Cook... and Likes Wood:
Wooden Cutting & Serving Boards in walnut, maple, or cherry by Buff Brown ($128)

Father's Day is Sunday, June 15. That's the same day at the 7th Ave. Street Fair here in Park Slope, and also OUR LAST DAY in our location here! Do stop by!

Posted and photos by Amy Shaw for Greenjeans.

Friday, June 06, 2008

Buff Brown's Boards - Back in Stock!

Your search for the perfect wedding or Father's Day gift is over...

After months on back-order, we received a shipment of gorgeous Cutting & Serving Boards from Buff Brown today! They're available in Walnut, Maple, and Cherry (as shown here left to right) and are $128 each.

Late last year Buff and Sharon moved from Pennsylvania to Montana, and it has taken them some time to get back into operation. But it looks like things are up and running again, and the boards look perfect!

I have them in the Webshop and we ship anywhere in the world.

They're each a little different, so if you're choosy (like me) coming in to see them in person is your best bet. I'll also bring some to the Brooklyn Flea on Sunday.

Thanks, Buff & Sharon!

Posted and photo by Amy Shaw for Greenjeans.

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Greenjeans on the Green Map

Les Judd, the President of Green Boroughs Walking Tours, stopped in today to add us to his new tour of green businesses Park Slope!

His tours of various neighborhoods in NYC go to "the newest, hottest, and greenest" shops, restaurants, community gardens, and green buildings where tour-takers can meet the designers, chefs, and "Greentrepreneurs" who are working to make the world a greener place.

Their first tour is Sunday -- can't wait!

We are also excited to be listed in the much-praised new green guide book, Greenopia. We scored 4 out of 4 leaves! Click here if you'd like to leave a terribly flattering comment about us...

We're thrilled to be on the green map! And be assured: when we relocate our green principles will come right along with us.

Posted by Amy Shaw for Greenjeans.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008


I've been fairly quiet about politics lately, but tonight I just need to express my over-the-moon excitedness that right now, as I write, Barak Obama is claiming the Democratic nomination for President of the United States!!! I am so happy I could cry!!!

And as Jae and I sit here listening to his heart-swelling speech and the crowd roar and cheer, we thought it might be fun to share with you the Obama Administration Dream Team we've been cooking up, half-seriously and half-tongue-in-cheek.

There are still positions open and others to add... Any suggestions?

And surely YOU have better/funner ideas than some of these... Do share!!


Vice President: Michael Bloomberg

Press Secretary: Brian Lehrer or Allison Janney

Secretary of State: Bill Richardson

Secretary of Defense: Colin Powell

Secretary of Energy: Dennis Kucinich

Sec. of the Interior: Bobby Kennedy, Jr.

Sec. of Agriculture: Alice Waters

Attorney General:

Sec. of Commerce:

Sec. of Labor: Michael Moore

Sec. of Education:

Sec. of Transportation: Someone who bikes to work

Sec. of Heath & Human Services: John Edwards

Sec. of Treasury:

Sec. of Veteran's Affairs: John McCain

Sec. of Homeland Security:

Sec. of Housing & Urban Development:

U.S. Ambassador to the U.N.: Oprah Winfrey

U.S. Ambassador to France: Moi!

Supreme Court Justice (when one needs to be replaced): Hillary Clinton

FED Chairman:

White House Interior Designer:

White House Head Chef: there would be a reality TV show to determine this one

Michelle's Wardrobe: Carolina Herrera

Barak's Wardrobe: custom Paul Smith

What else...?

Well, I hope we get to see!!!! Remember to VOTE in November no matter what!!

Woo hoo!!!

Posted by Amy Shaw for Greenjeans. Image sourced here.

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Report from SOFA NY 2008

On Sunday I went to the Park Avenue Armory to check out this year's SOFA New York. As usual, it was filled with extraordinary art jewelry, tour de force glass work, and dramatic vessels rendered in all sorts of materials and processes, not to mention throngs of cheerful Upper East Side collectors clambering to see the latest offerings from their favorite galleries.

SOFA is never a subtle show, and in fact galleries showing more minimal work often get upstaged by the dazzle and scale of works in surrounding booths. It's sort of like a mall for high-end, meticulously-crafted baubles where booth after booth competes to win attention, sometimes showing substantial, engaging, and beautiful work, yet more often tipping hopelessly into the realm of gaudiness, superficiality, and studio craft cliche. I am glad it is a smallish affair -- 67 galleries are exhibiting this year -- because it's easy to get visually overloaded. But there is always some outstanding work to see, so this show is worth the price of admission, and absolutely worth patronizing if you are a collector.

Topping my list of high points once again this year is Sienna Gallery. While there is amazing art jewelry in a number of booths -- I look forward to checking out Ornamentum, Charon Kransen Arts, and Jewelers' Werk Galerie every year -- Sienna Patti somehow manages to take it further, changing it up year after year, showing thoughtful, distinctive art jewelry and, more and more, visual art. Of particular note this year: Lauren Fensterstock's constructions of black paper quilling and charcoal, Jamie Bennett's enameled jewelry, and Lauren Kalman's photographs of herself modeling very unexpected gold jewelry. Sienna has a truly gifted eye.

Snyderman-Works Galleries also didn't disappoint, once again showing a very well-selected collection of work in various media. I especially liked Jocelyn Chateaurent's waist-length necklace with a large fiber fig leaf pendant wryly titled "Adam."

In the ceramics category, London's Galerie Besson impressed me again this year, particularly with new constructions by Neil Brownsword -- a young ceramicist who is very much one to watch -- and astonishing bowls by the late Lucy Rie.

A welcome newcomer to SOFA, Drud & Koppe Gallery from Denmark showed a fresh group of "contemporary objects," unequivocally demonstrating the point that craft does speak different languages, and exposure to these unfamiliar takes greatly enhances the overall experience of craft.

Also of note: amazing contortionistic Japanese baskets at Tai Gallery; stunning glass work by modern master Lino Tagliapietora and surreal glass "specimen panels" by Steffen Dam at Heller Gallery; Gianfranco Angelino's inlaid wooden bowls at del Mano Gallery; fine and deliciously odd paintings on wood by Megumi Nagai at Onishi Gallery; and David Samplonius' wall-mounted shelf made from walnut, aluminum, and animal hide, and Vanessa Yanow's zoomorphic glass and organza sculptures at Option Art.

I am hopeful that next year, when SOFA's dates change to fall during the ICFF and New York Design Week, the show will attract even more galleries showing innovative and relevant work, and start to shed its stuffy, fusty reputation. Because this show has enormous potential to be a very exciting event, and should attract more younger collectors and visitors, not just furniture makers and glass blowing students.

Or maybe this move will spark something like a Craft Week, with satellite shows featuring emerging galleries popping up the way art fairs spawn spin-off shows around the city, as we proposed last year on the blog after SOFA. I'm already excited for next year...

Posted by Amy Shaw for Greenjeans.
Images top to bottom:
Lauren Kalman at Sienna Gallery, Lauren Fensterstock at Sienna Gallery, Gianfranco Angelino at del Mano Gallery, Megumi Nagai at Onishi Gallery, Neil Brownsword at Galerie Besson, and Hideaki Honma at Tai Gallery.