Handmade Nation WEEKEND

True confession y’all.

My very first foray into the world of social media was pre-blog. Sometime around 2002, I stumbled onto the message boards at Get Crafty. Message boards were still kind of a novelty back then, and I was totally fascinated by them. This one didn’t even have avatars yet – just words. And, like many not-quite-20-year-olds, I hadn’t quite figured out my own game yet and was an early adopter of that irritating liberal-arts-college-kid-I-know-everything stance. “Sorry guys, I can’t watch The Bachelor tonight, I no longer subscribe to oppressive and socially-constructed heteronormative gender roles, but have fun!” Isn’t it amazing I had any friends?

But message boards….ah, message boards were anonymous. I could be as opinionated as I want, on subjects ranging from feminism to decoupage. I even got my first freelance writing assignment through Get Crafty, from my then-editor Jean Railla – author of Get Crafty: Hip Home Ec. (And PS, it is both entertaining and EXTREMELY humbling to go back and read your first actual piece of feature writing.)

So when Austin’s crafty ladies mentioned Handmade Nation going on this weekend, I was immediately excited to tell you guys about it.

This is a documentary by director Faythe Levine about DIY and craft culture, which has enjoyed a resurgence indeed in the early 21st century. Several Austinites appear in it too, like Jenny Hart of Sublime Stitching. While the film will premiere Sunday at the Alamo Drafthouse (South Lamar), there are a TON of events happening around it so I’m going to paste this fantastic poster and list, courtesy of Jennifer Perkins at Naughty Secretary Club:

(Sorry the image is so tiny.)

Swap and Sew + Sweets 12-6pm Space 12
Bring your old fabric and craft supplies plus a sewing machine if you have one and let the Austin Craft Mafia help you whip up something new and fresh. Don’t forget to snag a sweet or bring a canned good for free sweets!

Handmade Nation book signing party (yep, it’s a book too!) 7-9pm, Domy Books
Faythe Levine will be signing books alongside artists featured in the book (Whitney Lee, Jennifer Perkins, Magda Sayeg, and Kathie Sever) Sounds by DJ Bullet, free beer from Live Oak brewing, and an awesome raffle, packed with prizes from artists and local businesses. Free.

Handmade Nation Screenings 1:30pm and 4:10pm, Alamo Drafthouse South Lamar
The film’s Austin premiere! Q & A to follow with director, Faythe Levine, and several of the films’ subjects.

Craft Bazaar noon-6pm, Alamo Drafthouse South Lamar
Craft fair featuring some of Austin’s most talented up and coming artists, craft demos and giveaways, and stuff for the kiddos. Take a look at a list of vendors right here. Free.

Austin Handmade Post Screening Shabang 6:30pm-9pm Austin Handmade
Austin Handmade is hosting an after party at their new location – more crafty goods, free drinks by Treaty Oak Rum, snacks by Nada Moo and a DJ. Free.

So there you have it: craftivities galore this Labor Day weekend!

Speaking of DIY, I am excited because R. and I are going to take our first cooking class together tonight. I haven’t even told him yet. It’s going to be at Central Market, and the name of the class is Food & Music of Africa: Guinea. The instructors prepare African food in front of you AND play music from their homeland (although I don’t think simultaneously. But how cool would that be.)