Ten Good Reasons to Buy Handmade Gifts for Christmas

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1/ You sponsor local artists, instead of international companies.

And, trust me, they need the money. Supporting local communities is always a good idea. Plus, Christmas is the best time of the year for giving back…

2/ You’ll have a different gift for everybody.

All those friends and relatives, and colleagues! Choosing different gifts for so many people can be a chore sometimes, especially in the era of mass production that we live in. Handmade gifts are the best way to ensure that everybody gets a different gift for Christmas. Even if you buy at the same shop! Handmade gifts eliminate the probability of two people buying the same thing for the same person, as well.

3/ Art is always a good idea!

For a Christmas gift. For any gift, in fact.

4/ Plus, it does not have to be expensive.

Especially, if you compare the prices of handmade gifts to those of fashion clothes and hi-tech products (smart phones, tablets, personal computers). Expensive. Boring. Mass. Production. Being original at a lower price saves money, but it also makes you stand out.

5/ Quality matters.

Speaking in terms of quality, we would never compare a beautiful handmade gift, designed by a skillful hand and made with love, to a mass product, coming out of a Chinese or a Taiwan company by the millions. How do you think, which of the two options shows a more personal attitude?

6/ It’s ecological.

Handmaders rely mostly on reused products for materials. Their craft does not have a negative impact on the environment. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. “Miracles made of paper and waste” is our motto, for example. We do not only create art from stuff that people usually throw away (like spam brochures etc). We teach and inspire environmental thinking (as a way of life) with our work.

7/ It’s a way of saying NO to exploitation!

The expensive brands that you buy at the local mall are usually made by poor people (and sometimes even kids) in poor countries. They work long hours in miserable conditions, they get harsh treatment by their supervisors and they receive minimum wage. Three dollars a day is not a rare example. It’s enough to buy rice, but it is not enough to be a human being. Economists call it “outsourcing”. We call it slavery. Buying handmade gifts for Christmas is a way of saying NO to “profit maximization”, which is usually the synonym for exploitation.

8/ Souvenir is the French word for gift.

When giving a gift, we try to create a lasting memory. Souvenir is the French word for gift. It means “memory”. Handmade gifts are the best way to impress and to be remembered…

9/ The choice is immense!

There are millions of handmaders around the world and every one of them is creating hundreds of unique items that have no replica on this planet. This is what we call “variety”!

10/ And what do you choose for somebody who has it all?

Remember that Art is always a god idea? Well, handmade gifts are probably be the most affordable pieces of Art that you can buy for somebody who has it all…

Merry Christmas!

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GG Sisters is part of the initiative “Kapana Creative District” organized by Municipal Foundation Plovdiv 2019.

Работилница с деца

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В рамките на тазгодишното издание на фестивала One Architecture Week ще организираме детска работилница по плетене с хартия. Разкривайки тайната на занаята си пред малките, мислим да импровизираме в създаването на различни архитектурни министруктури, като небостъргачи, мостове и кули. Създадените макети ще останат изложени по време на фестивала.

Ще има и лакомства от Barni.  🙂

Работилницата е предназначена за деца над 6 (шест) годишна възраст.

Максималният брой на участниците е 10 (десет).

Записване на: kapana@edno.bg

Датите са 12-ти и 19-ти октомври, от 10 до 12 ч.

Мястото е ул. Г. Бенковски 25, Капана (ателието на GG Sisters)

Повече за работилницата – тук.

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GG Sisters е част от инициативата „Капана – Квартал на творческите индустрии“ на Общинска фондация „Пловдив 2019“ и е в подкрепа на кандидатурата на града за Европейска столица на културата 2019.

Нощна смяна

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През десетото юбилейно издание на Нощта на музеите и галериите (Пловдив) ателието на GG Sisters ще бъде отворено за посетители до късно. Можете да ни откриете на адрес ул. Георги Бенковски 25 в Капана и двете вечери: на 12-ти и 13-ти септември (петък и събота) след 19 часа.

During the tenth anniversary edition of the Night of Museums and Galleries (Plovdiv) GG Sisters’ studio will be open to visitors until late. You can find us both of the evenings at Georgi Benkovski Str. No 25: September 12th and 13th (Friday and Saturday) after 7 p.m.karta_kapana

 

Welcome! We will be happy to see you there.

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GG Sisters is part of the initiative Kapana Creative District organized by Municipal Foundation Plovdiv 2019 and supports Plovdiv’s candidacy for European capital of culture 2019.

Great News!!!

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Plovdiv has just been nominated for European Capital of Culture 2019!!! 

Yayyyy!!!

And, while our ears are being deafened by cracks of champagne, here is a little more about the prize that we’re so proud of:

From Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia:

“The European Capital of Culture is a city designated by the European Union for a period of one calendar year during which it organizes a series of cultural events with a strong European dimension.

Preparing a European Capital of Culture can be an opportunity for the city to generate considerable cultural, social and economic benefits and it can help foster urban regeneration, change the city’s image and raise its visibility and profile on an international scale.

In 1985, former actress Melina Mercouri, then Greece’s Minister of Culture, and her French counterpart Jack Lang came up with the idea of designating an annual Capital of Culture to bring Europeans closer together by highlighting the richness and diversity of European cultures and raising awareness of their common history and values.

The Commission of the European Union manages the title and each year the Council of Ministers of the European Union formally designates European Capitals of Culture: more than 40 cities have been designated so far.

An international panel of cultural experts is in charge of assessing the proposals of cities for the title according to criteria specified by the European Union.

A 2004 study conducted for the European Commission demonstrated that the choice of European Capital of Culture served as a catalyst for the cultural development and the transformation of the city. Consequently, the beneficial socio-economic development and impact for the chosen city are now also considered in determining the chosen cities”.

Source: Wikipedia

Our studio is working from 11 am to 7 pm, Monday to Friday, on Georgi Benkovski Str. No 25., Plovdiv, Bulgaria. Come see us there:

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Cheerz, Plovdiv! 

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GG Sisters is part of the initiative “Kapana Creative District” organized by Municipal Foundation Plovdiv 2019 and supports Plovdiv’s candidacy for European capital of culture 2019.

Handamde Gift Ideas for Easter and Spring

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Easter is fast approaching and the blossoming Spring around us is a great inspiration for our craft. Here are some handamde gift ideas, which are very suitable for the Season in general and for the Easter celebrations in particular. They can be used as a home decoration (for your table) when you are inviting guests or they can be the perfect and unique, 100% handmade present for your hosts. We all like bringing eggs and goodies when visitng relatives and friends during this season. They can be put in one of these woven paper panniers for a more pleasant surprise:

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Or the colorful eggs can be put in a basket, specially designed for this purpose. Here is what we gave as a gift to our friends, when we vistied them last Easter. It  was very well accepted and it still serves them for multiple purposes in their household:

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You can add to a perfect handmade gift like this one some napkin rings as well. They are made of reused paper as everything else that we do. We have simply reused some old spam paper brochures and we have put some ribbons on them. Here is the result:

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These are simple, but artistic napkin rings that will make your table look much batter during the Easter celebrations. And not only. Every time you invite guests, you will be proud to surprise them with something unique. The napkin rings are also a very good present for your hosts, when you are visiting friends. Just imagine how wonderfully our spring baskets will decorate their home, when filled with the handmade napkin rings:

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Your guests will be fascinated by your taste and by the environmental attititude that it shows. They will most definitely like the idea of a rich spring table, decorated with woven paper baskets and napkin rings, made of reused paper by hand. This is a nice way to show some style. Apart from that, you will have decorated your home or you will have given presents to your hosts, that have no replica in this world. See these pieces of art:

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All of our spring offers are made by rolled paper weaving. It’s a nice technique for getting rid of unnecessary paper (spam letters, brochures, flyers, ad mags, old outputs from your home printer) and turning it into something new, something beautiful, which has many practical implementations in your household. This is how resued printed documents from our home printer look like:

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You can check out many other interesting gift ideas in our Facebook page and in our Etsy shop. You can also see a great variety of them here, in the galleries of our blog (listed in the sections above). Please, do not hesitate to contact us, if you would like to have any of these beautiful handmade presents. We can also remake any of them for you, according to your own preferences. Just use one of the contacts below and drop us a line:

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Meteorite Purse

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Another one of our “stone” purses. This time it looks like a meteorite. Handmade and unique, as everything else we create. It took a long and complicated process of sculpturing and designing this beauty by hand, but the end result is amazing – a “meteorite” hanging right from your shoulder!

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Nice, elegant and classy. Very suitable for nightclubs, restaurants and bars where the purpose is to be seen. It is smaller than our other “stone” bags. Dimensions are: 20cm x 12 cm x 17 cm. Well, meteorites burn in the atmosphere, so that’s why the main colors are different shades of grey.

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The “meteorite” purse is water resistant and durable. You can enjoy it for a very long time. It has been covered with acrylic varnish, in order protect the inner and outer surfaces from scratches. The shape has been fortified by textile and plaster during the creative process.

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It weighs no more than half a kilo. The metal lock is stable and easy to open / close with one hand. It is a combination of blue jean straps and a belt clasp, which, of course, makes it suitable for wearing with blue jeans on a daily walk. The shutter is attached to the body of the purse by blue jean straps as well. On the inside, there is a collage, made of fashion magazines. The handle is 130 centimeters long, but you can adjust it to you height and according to your preferences.

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The handle is made of black leatherette. It is replaceable. In this nice little purse you can put all your keys, a smartphone, small change or a wallet, plus may be some lipstick and there will be space for a few condoms as well. Women will envy you for this purse.

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GG Sisters on Etsy. It was about time…

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Finally, we have our own Etsy Shop! It was about time! It happens to be more easy to just sit down and do it, instead of planning it, postponing it and thinking about it over and over again – a principle that may also be true for many other aspects of life. Our goal was to add the third “pillar” to the “holy trio” of our presence online: this blog, our facebook page and now – Etsy.

Etsy is not just an online market for handmade stuff and vintage goods. It is a vast (and growing) network of creative people. Its social features are well distinguished. Members can create or pariticipate in different communities, take part in discussions with like-minded people, follow, like and feature other members’ shops or product items and last, but not least, sell their hand made goods worldwide. Etsy will facilitate your appearance in search engine results and, apart from optimization, it is well known for the transparency of communication. Our first impressions are very pleasant so far.

Easier to be said than done, though. From the very beginning, we had many questions we didn’t know the answers to. Thanks to all the people who helped us with guidance and advice, we could make it! If you also consider joining the network, but you still have some questions and doubts, please do not hesitate to contact us – we’ll do our best to help you with advice, just as other people did help us. On the other hand, if you happen to be one of the “old dogs”, please drop an eye on our brand new shop and profile there and tell us how we can possibly make them better.

Sharing is everything.

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          GG Sisters

I Like Fest

This year’s I Like Fest was on the same date with national holiday (the 6th of September) which, combined with the nice weather, obviously drove many people out of town for the holidays (three non-working days in a row). This is why there were not so many people at the fest, but we think they spent some quality time together: 

As a matter of fact, we also did. 🙂 The atmosphere was entirely the “I like” type. “I Like” is a game of words and a nice way to translate the local dialect word for “Aylyak”. Aylyak basically means: being able to do nothing (on puropose) and enjoying it in the same time.   Many thanx to our dear friend Cvetan Uzunov (you can see only his back in the picture) and many thanx to Mihaela Mihaylova, as well, for inviting us to this fest!

Again and again, we were asked the same question by visitors: “Is this really made from paper?” People were studying our exhibition of handmade gifts, touching and feeling them with their hands, in order to convince themselves that these miracles had really been made from paper and waste. 🙂

Two very nice grils (a mother and her daughter) visited our workshop in order to learn how to make “Tony’s Spoons”. Tony is a boy who had taught us on a previous festival the technology of making spoons from recycled paper. It’s a teamwork for two. We will definitely discuss on this topic later, in another publication.

There were other festivals and celebrations throughout the city on the same day, but we think that our place was the best place to stay. One can easily kick back and relax in the city park. It is easier to reach the Aylyak / I Like mood in it’s atmosphere. We were surrounded by grandpas playing chess, by young people relaxing on their hammocks (people of all ages and beers of different types complimenting each other), by friends having fun in the park together, by artists and musicians and many more…

We definitely liked it! 🙂

Click on the links in the text above to get a more visual perspective.

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                  GG Sisters

И ние бяхме там, три дни пяхме, пихме и се веселихме

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Снимка: Диди Андреева

Тази година за пръв път бяхме на Спирит-а, при това – като участници, за което още веднъж благодарим на Ник и Цвета от “На тъмно”. Няколко хиляди гости, три сцени, всякакви музикални стилове, само две безсънни нощи, но безкрайно повече емоции в морската градина на Бургас. Един от очарователните моменти беше срещата ни с Миленита на живо, която и двете харесваме – дива, красива, талантлива, земна и игрива – точно такава, каквато си я представяхме. Друг интересен кадър беше добричкият “чуек” – фристайлърът, който всъщност е рапър-готвач. Римите му идваха “отръки”, момчето умееше да импровизира на фона на всякакъв ритъм от сцената. Радвахме се на различни усмихнати хора, запознахме се със симпатичен италианец в инвалидна количка и дъщеря му Пламена. Имаше секси полицайки, хендмейд артисти, музиканти и всякакви откачалки. Снимахме се с Dub FX (не се знае защо “баткото” от задния план гледа толкова лошо). Спасявахме котка, качила се на дърво. Настанихме се при руска хазяйка, която разрешаваше само по едно къпане на ден, а после видяхме, че всъщност може да се изкара и на хамак под звездите. Всички се радваха на шарената ни сергия, включително и на “дъждовете”, но както обещахме – не заваля. Имахме удоволствието да попаднем на добри “съседи”: артистите Веси и Емо (Емо от “Pimp“), които ни направиха временни татуировки с логото; Антония от Варна с нейните яки чанти; Ади и Джери с техните рисувани камъчета, заредени с късмет; парцалените кукли на Копчи; бижутата на Котка Черешкова, Кърли хендмейд…не можем да изброим всички – толкова бяха интересни, разнообразни и уникални… Там бяха и Грийнпийс с кампанията им за спасяването на Арктика от сондажи за петрол. Много атрактивни бяха секси “полицайките”, които “арестуваха” минувачи по улицата, за да се снимат с тях. От Durex раздаваха презервативи и ограмотяващи листовки. Разхождаха се
хора на кокили (“тея наистина ли са толкова високи или само аз така ги виждам?”). Прегракнаха ни гърлата – беше голяма шумотевица, но приятна шумотевица – от
тези, които те “държат” няколко дни напред след феситвала. Включихме се в купона, изкарахме и двете нощи до сутринта на плажа. Успяхме да се изложим пред
ТВ+, Slojno.com и други фото репортери. Като цяло сега сме доста уморени, но и още по-заредени. Време е за няколко дни заслужен отдих по далечните брегове на северното Черноморие. Благодарим много на Диди Андрреева за яките снимки, които изпрати!

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         GGSisters

What is a Rainstick?

Many people know exactly what a rainstick is, but many people are still asking us: “What аre these beautiful colourful tubes? What are they made of? What are they filled with? What is their purpose?” Well, here is a little more about them:

Classical rainsticks (we call them just “rains”) are usually made of wood, cactus or bamboo. Their purpose is to make the skies cry. They can also be used as a myscial instrument. Rainsticks (“batons du pluit” in French) have a Himalayan origin. Buddhist monks are well known for their miracles. One of their abilities is to change weather. In this case, they influence the weather, in order to produce rain. You see, crops are scarce in the high mountains. Sometimes you have to provoke a drop or two in the desired time…For that purpose, they use meditation, mantras, visualization…and a rainstick. It facilitates them to concentrate on the desired result, as it produces the exact sound of a rain falling down from the sky.

Other supposed origins of the rainstick are the deserts of Afrika and the dry regions of Asia and America. It is even more important to be able to “produce” rain there. Different tribes used cactus or bamboo to make rainsticks.

Believe us or not, our rainsticks have exactly the same effect. The only difference is that we make them of recycled paper. Well, it all depends on the faith, of course. Not the faith in God, in the Universe or in some other mythical being, but simply the belief that it will work. If you have no doubts, it will rain…shortly after you start playing with this instrument.

Every rainstick makes a different sound. It is the preparation of the sound that makes this form of art tricky. And interesting. And attractive. We’ll keep the technology and the contents in secret for now, but we’ll tell you some real stories about rainsticks in our next publications, so – follow this blog. 🙂

If you would like to learn more about the technology and/or the contents of the rainsticks, please do not hesitate to contact us. You can also join us at one of our next exhibitions (hint: Spirit of Burgas). We will teach you – online or in person. We like to share, but we prefer to share our secrets only with people who really want to know.

If you would like to order one of these beautiful, uniqie, magical, handmade rains (as a decoration for the interior of your house, for example, as a gift for a friend, or as a helpful tool for your farm 🙂 ), just drop us a line. You can order one of these beauties (click on the icons for a more detailed preview):

Or we can produce a custom rainstick for you – one that matches your exact taste for colour, shape, form, and the kind of rain you’d like to be singing in… 🙂

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        GG Sisters