This overhead view of James Street North by Amanda Farquharson is currently in our window display and getting lots of people’s attention as they walk by.
After seeing his work at the Christmas and spring One of A Kind shows in Toronto – we knew we had to have these beautiful woodcuts by Graham Blair on our walls.
Some of our favourite prints from last year are finally restocked. Raymond Biesinger’s city series and 1919 maps sold out quickly at Christmas. We don’t expect this new batch to last long.
We’re open late for the James North Art Crawl on the evening of Friday, April 12. Swing by and see all our new stock and get a close-up look at all our great art too.
We’re well into January 2013 and many of us are back into a regular routine after a busy December holiday season. We are thankful and appreciative to all our customers who chose to shop locally in search of something unique and creative. Not only was our store busy, but many of our neighbours on James North saw an increase in pedestrian traffic as more and more people rediscover our historic stretch of storefronts.
While Christmas was a top priority for many – the other big topic of conversation in the shop was whether or not we all should be worried that a Casino would locate in the downtown core. I was encouraged by the fact that everyone who we talked to felt the same way we did. That a casino in the downtown core will only harm the many positive developments that are taking place on James Street North and in downtown Hamilton.
I still can’t believe we’re entering our 8th year in business. To think, when we opened in 2005 most of our friends and family thought we were nuts to locate on James Street North. We heard it all. That the “downtown was dead”, “no one shops downtown anymore” and “you’ll be lucky to last one year”. We’re proud to say that along with our hardworking friends and neighbours, we helped to change what was once an unloved and forgotten neighbourhood into a lively and exciting destination. What continues to happen on James North goes against decades of the same-old downtown large-scale renewal thinking. One has to just look at Jackson Square, Copps Coliseum and the Hamilton Convention Centre to see that that the guarantees of a renewed core through mega projects will never achieve the vitality or economics as promised. The idea of James North wasn’t brainstormed around a boardroom table or made possible by millions of dollars in civic grants and loans. The reason James North happened is that Hamiltonians wanted it to happen. Whether it is the thousands of people who frequent the monthly Art Crawl, the regular shoppers in search of a good coffee and unique finds or the Saturday night crowds enjoying live music at This Ain’t Hollywood and The Brain. The James North that is being written about in national media is what makes Hamilton special and different. Clearly we are being seen as something other the “armpit of Canada” and that is something we can all be proud of.
For the first time in a long time, there is a buzz about the city that is loud and positive. A downtown casino does nothing to enhance that. It creates a blackhole of economic stagnation and creates short-term gains for the operators and long-term pains for the community that hosts it.
This will hurt Hamilton. As life-long Hamiltonians and passionate supporters of this city, we ask you to say NO to a Downtown Hamilton casino!
Escarpment Greetings photo courtesy of Hamilton Artists Inc.
Many thanks to all for shopping local and unique this holiday season! We continue to be amazed by your support and enthusiasm for our little shop. See you all in 2013!
Dec. 24: 10am – 4pm
Dec. 25-27: Closed
Dec. 28-29: 12 Noon – 4pm
Dec. 30-Jan.1: Closed
Jan. 2: 10am – 6pm
The countdown is on and while we should have had pretty much all our boxes by now – a nice little package surprised us today. Inside I was happy to find beautiful little magnets ($14.95 each) from iPop featuring a selection of fun designs including Hamilton’s own illustration husband/wife superduo, Sorry You’re Happy.
We always got asked about carrying cool magnets and only in the last few months have we’ve been able to find ones we liked and that we felt suited the shop. The other line we are carrying, Badge Bomb features some of the best indie illustrators and designers around. We still have a few packs of these super-strong magnets left ($11.95 each).
Another last-minute arrival is this gem from Chronicle Books. The Little Book of Lettering ($28.95 each) is chock full of amazing type design including some stellar work from another local artist and designer, Jamie Lawson.
While we’re talking books – we still have a few of the ultra-cute board books from BabyLit. Jane Eyre, Alice in Wonderland and Dracula are in-stock ($10.95 each).
Other great gift ideas include: Quo Vadis Habana Journals, No Brow graphic novels and comics, Anthology Magazine, Stillman & Birn sketchbooks, Ecojot journals and cahiers, Stabilo Point 88 fineliners and Lamy Safari fountain pens.
More gifts ideas on Friday!
We are now just 5 days away until Christmas Eve and the shop has been bustling with customers in search of unique gifts. We’ve been hustling to make sure there are interesting things to still find on the shelves.
Leading up to last week’s Art Crawl we had sold our last copies of Keri Smith activity books. We are happy to report we got a new shipment of her amazingly creative books and these are always a fun gift idea.
A few other things we restocked up on: Rookie Yearbook Vol. 1, Owlkids Beastly Activity Series, Cuppow mason jar tops, Slingshot 2013 planners and Vapur water bottles.
Another fantastic idea and one of our holiday best sellers has been Matt Jelly‘s neighbourhood maps. We currently have the downtown and west-end ‘hoods framed up and ready to go ($30-$35 each).
2013 Calendars are going quick – but we still have these ones left: Paper Source Watercolour Art, Jacob Rolfe Wall Art, Studio Hinrich Typography Calendar and Smudge Ink Year-at-a-glance Fox Art.
More ideas tomorrow!
Lots of people heard Beck Hansen on CBC Radio’s Q this morning and we just opened up a box to discover his new “album” peeking back at us. Beautifully packaged by McSweeney’s – Song Reader is not your average music release.
”Beck’s latest album comes in an almost-forgotten form—twenty songs existing only as individual pieces of sheet music, never before released or recorded. Complete with full-color, heyday-of-home-play-inspired art for each song and a lavishly produced hardcover carrying case, Song Reader is an experiment in what an album can be at the end of 2012.”
Featuring original art from Marcel Dzama (who created the imagery for Beck’s acclaimed Guero), Leanne Shapton, Josh Cochran, Jessica Hische, and many more.
We’re excited to announce that Montreal-based Raymond Biesinger’s amazing new book, Black and White Illustrations is now in-stock. We’re also featuring his screenprints of Toronto (1976) and the Europe (1919) map that also doubles as a Risk board and comes with game pieces.
We have one framed City of Toronto print left in stock, $100.
We’ve plaque mounted Europe 1919 for easy display and play – $75.00
We’ve been fans of Raymond’s work for a while now and we think you will be too! Check out www.fifteen.ca to see more of his work!
Just a quick post to let everyone know we have lots of stock of the following:
Lamy Safari fountain pens, ink cartridges and ink bottles.
Faber Castell pencil crayons, Pitt Pens and drawing supplies.
Stabilo Point 88 Fineliners! More colours than you know!
I recently had a young girl squeal out loud in the shop when she set eyes on the Rookie Yearbook sitting on our main table. She is not the only one excited by this fantastic print edition compiling some of the best articles, interviews, photo editorials, and illustrations found on Rookie’s fantastic website. This has been a popular gift item this holiday season – get in quick to check it out!
Who doesn’t like rubber stamps? Especially these fun sets from Yellow Owl Workshop. We have a variety of stamps from this amazing San Francisco company and are also stocked up on their ink pads and Print Workshop book.
Were we ever happy to get these amazing Tintin sets the other day! Compiling the entire collection of Tintin books in a neat box set – armchair adventurers can travel the world with the intrepid Belgian reporter, his dog Snowy, Captain Haddock, and the curious cast of characters that make these books worth returning to at any age.
More gift ideas tomorrow!
Cardboard Safari makes unique cardboard decor items that are laser-cut, easy to put together and made from recycled materials. We put this moose head together in a snap and love the way it hangs in the shop. We are stocked with moose, deer, bass fish, elephants and unicorns. If you see something on the Cardboard Safari site we don’t carry – let us know as we can quickly special order as we head into Christmas.