What: Bratz Biz Christmas craft fair
When: Saturday, Dec. 6, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Where: Whistler Secondary School
Admission: By donation
While some kids are busy waxing skis and shooting pucks this
winter season, there are a bunch of young, talented local artists who have been
toiling away at home, creating unique crafts for the annual Bratz Biz craft
Susan Shrimpton is one of the organizers of the event, which
she founded with her hairdresser and friend, Carmen Laslett, in the fall of
“It just started over a conversation while she was cutting my
hair,” Shrimpton recalled.
The two women were chatting about their crafty kids who had
been busy selling their handcrafted wares to family and friends, and the
beach-going public, over the summer months.
“We thought, What can we do to help these kids realize how good
they are, how talented they are, and how can we help market their products?”
she said. “We wanted to create an event for like-minded children — crafty
Shrimpton points out that, while there are many events and
activities geared towards athletic and musical children, there aren’t a lot of
options for kids who like arts and crafts. Entering professional adult crafting
events, like Bizarre Bazaar and the Whistler Farmer’s Market, isn’t really an
option for most children.
“Bizarre Bazaar is a very expensive event to enter, it’s also
very difficult to get into the Sunday Farmer’s Market — it’s extremely
competitive,” Shrimpton said.
So they started organizing Bratz Biz in the fall of 2006,
offering kids a venue to sell their products in. Now, some kids will be
participating for their third year.
Participants range in age from nine to 16-year-olds, who create
everything from jewelry, figurines and baked goods to dog products and clocks
made from collected bicycle parts. You name it, a kid has probably thought of
“They’re blown away, they’ve overwhelmingly surprised,”
Shrimpton said of the first-time attendees to the fair.
Shannon MacNamara, a 15-year-old Grade 10 student at Whistler
Secondary School, is a second-year vendor at Bratz Biz. She sells handmade
necklaces and earrings, crafted from glass and wooden beads.
“Its partly what I like to wear, and partly what I see,”
MacNamara explained, adding that she gets a lot of her inspiration from pop
culture — TV, movies and magazines.