Jackalope Arts blog - vendor tips, art & craft fair information and updates #jackalopeartfair

Jackalope Scottsdale (and Pasadena) Vendor Spotlight: Fezz-o-rama

  • How would you describe your style? 

I tend to bounce around various styles that challenge me artistically. My natural style is rather cartoonish but I like to delve into realism, abstraction and folk styles all the while balancing against the absurdist nature of designing fezzes.

  • What do you feel makes your work unique and truly your own? 

My work is an unique combination of my training in Fashion Design, my love of millinery, my background in the graphic arts, and my interest in embroidery design. All of this came out of my desire to find a creative outlet to freely explore embroidery design without needing to deal with the restrictions and expectations of the fashion industry. What started as a hobby shared with friends has grown into a full-time career where the business as a whole is my creative expression. 

  • What sort of things inspire you?  Where do you look for inspiration?

I look for inspiration wherever I can, but I find that most of my passion comes from classic literature, mythology, science and fringe cultures.

  • What is your creative process like?

Typically my work will start with random little sketches in my well-worn sketchbook, almost stream of consciousness stuff. I'm usually looking for some idea that will trigger a change reaction of creativity. From a partial rough sketch I will then go to the computer and work up a rough vector pass on a full design with the structure of the embroidery in mind. From there it goes into the embroidery design software where I will work out the final design with all of its stitches. I tend to have a style and color of the hat in mind while working up the thread version. Then it is a series of thread tests and design tweaks before finally creating the finished prototype. If all goes well, the design heads into production.

  • Any special item you'll be releasing or sale you'll be doing at the fair that we should tell people about?

We will be revisiting a design I did many years ago and producing a special edition run of our Jackalope Fez for the fair.

  • Where can we learn more about you?

Scottsdale Vendor Spotlight: Tumblestone

My wife and I were driving through the Texas panhandle when she spotted her first tumbleweed tumbling down the middle of the road, "just drive over it”, I said, “people get in accidents when they try to miss them... it'll fall apart when you run the car over it." One mile later, on the side of the road, as I dug the surprisingly tenacious tumbleweed out from under the car, we decided on the spot that such a determined “weed” should have a place in our home.

After several years of spray paint and tinsel, Halloween ghosts, and Christmas ornaments, our mascot tumbleweed just fell apart into an eclectic display of dried sticks and stems in a beautiful array of colors, resting in the bottom of an old clay pot. The first thought in my artist’s brain was, “if I can get those bits and pieces to stick together, I can sculpt something unique.”

My beginning attempts to dye and press tumbleweed into a viable medium (stable and visually stimulating) for sculpturing firstly became a weekend hobby, then a part-time project, then a full-time obsession! The first try failed, so did the second and third, so did the 78th! With the needed equipment becoming more complex, supplies costlier, patience waning, my commitment often failed me, but I continued to come back to the “vision” of tumbleweeds resting in the bottom of that old clay pot.

Finally, in September of 2012, the very first “fossilized” tumbleweed brick was produced! The first cut into the brick revealed a stable and stunningly beautiful product. When I finally held the very first tumbleweed gem in my hand, with my wife and grandson gathered around, we knew something (never seen before) had just blinked into existence…. And that moment is truly the beginning of my family’s journey.

Mature tumbleweeds are gathered from the Arizona desert, debarked, and dyed vivid colors using plant ­based pigments. The dyed sticks and stems are heated and compressed for 30 days, producing a brick of "fossilized" tumbleweed. From the first cut to the finished piece, each handmade stone is unique in size, shape, color, and grain pattern. Appreciate the slight imperfections that naturally occur during the dying and pressing processes of this re-purposed southwestern icon.

Learn more about Tumblestone on their website at