Clear eyes. Full hearts. Can’t lose.
Okay, okay, I couldn’t resist starting this post with that phrase. I’ve been feverishly watching “Friday Night Lights” on Netflix, and totally geeked out when I discovered that the ‘home’ of the fictional Dillon Panthers was only minutes, (MINUTES!) from where we were staying in Austin. I couldn’t resist. So, for all you Coach Taylor lovers out there, go ahead and bask in the glory of the above football field. For all you outsiders, read on. ;-)
The 2013 summer show circuit is up and running, and what better way to kick it off than a trip to Austin, Texas for another amazing Renegade Craft Fair! Shelah, Stephanie (our go-to road trip companion), Trailer Swift, Seabiscuit, and I set out on our southwestern adventure bright and early on Friday, May 17. Well, maybe it wasn’t so bright at 3 am, but it was def early! We counted armadillos to pass the time and keep our minds alert and chatted about all the fun that would be had in the Lone Star state. What was supposed to be a 13 hour drive may have taken 18 hours due to traffic and construction, but we made the most of it with groovy music, bizarre conversation, and dill pickle flavored sunflower seeds.
After finally deciding to take a detour/scenic route to avoid the terrible traffic outside of Waco, we felt that we had finally entered the ‘real’ Texas. Flat land as far as the eye can see, longhorns standing idly by, and tiny towns with crawfish boil signs and taco stands galore. We’d all been to Texas before, but the vast size of that state never ceases to amaze me.
When we finally found the northern suburbs of Austin, specifically Hutto (home of the Hippos, in case you were wondering), it was time for dinner and drinks before crashing for the night. NorthxNorthwest Brew Pub was just the place. Then it was off to bed!
Thanks so much to our beautiful and dear friends, Rachel and Omid, for allowing us to crash in their living room for several days. Their gorgeous kids were the best entertainment of the entire trip! Maybe we’ll see you again come October for the Austin City Limits Music Festival! Oh okay!
Saturday morning may have come a bit sooner than we all would have liked, but the buzz of Renegade was ringing in our ears. It was show time, people! Luckily for Shelah and I, we’ve become quite the professionals at this whole traveling gypsy lifestyle, so we were unloaded and set up in no time! We were seriously so surprised. I mean, we may talk a big talk when it comes to doing shows, but we have never, NEVER been as put together as we were in Austin. What can I say, those amazing Renegade organizers inspire us! Best booth display yet!
As usual, we immediately met some super cool fellow vendors, and I was sure to snap some pics. I hope you love looking at them as much as we enjoyed taking them! Here are links to some of our fav artists. We’re even hoping to sell a few here at The Foundrie!
Emilee Rose – adorable prints and paper dolls
Lisa Chow – paper goods galore, coming to The Foundrie soon!!!
The Stationery Bakery – so in love with their feather prints
Snash Jewelry – killer deer head necklaces and rings
BDJ Craft Works – such a pretty wall of tiny wood vases
Make – ummmmmm…….mistaken lyric coasters?!?!? Yes, please!
T-We Tea – I don’t usually drink tea, but he and his friend were so adorable, I couldn’t resist.
Cairo Vintage – def got an amazing pair of moccasin booties and a killer beach towel here
Emmie Bean – Our neighbor Sadie who took all of the pictures of the three of us all weekend!!! Thanks, Sadie!
Burger and Friends - home of the cattitude shirt
And then, of course, there were some of our current vendors there! It was so great to finally meet Cassie from The Mossy Fox and Jess from Fox & Brie. And the always amazing Megan from store favorite Megan Lee Designs! We may have done a trade or two with Megan and hung out after hours with her and her sidekick Dan! So. Much Fun…….which leads us to the non-work portion of our journey!
Conversation with a few locals about where the best place to hang out led us to East Austin, ranked number 7 in the ’hippest hipster neighborhoods in the country’. (Yes, that’s a real ranking.) Further investigation dug up the Longbranch Inn, or the LBI for those in the know. Read these Yelp reviews, and you’ll understand why we had to go there, immediately, if not sooner. The bartender was great, the bobcat just wanted to cuddle, the beavers were drunk, and I took a shot of something that had a horseshoe on the bottle with my new friend, Dan. Good thing we had an amazing dinner at the Hillside Farmacy before we started!
Now that the official work was done, it was all good times from here! Walking around downtown Austin was great. The Jackalope became our favorite 6th Street hangout. Voted America’s Favorite Bar……it said so right there on the sign!! I’m pretty sure The Foundrie was voted America’s Favorite Store, so let’s just go ahead and hang that on the storefront, shall we?
Steph’s friend, Dave, advised us that the ‘real’ Austin was east, somewhere between the LBI and downtown. ”Totes walkable!” he declared. Well, okay, then! Off we went a walkin’, after midnight, out in the starlight…….The White Horse, with it’s two-step lessons, spaghetti western band, and hipster overload. Amazing. I didn’t want to leave. The Brixton, famously featured on Bar Rescue. Apparently that was all a ploy to get a free makeover. It looked great, so whatevs! So much great graffiti and beautiful colors. The real Austin indeed!
During the daylight hours, we spent most of our profits at IKEA. I mean, who can pass an IKEA and not go in? Not us. We had a fantastic lunch with Rachel near her equally fantastic Arhaus store in The Domain. Shelah and I shopped while Stephanie went to David’s Hole. (It’s an inside joke. Ask us next time we chat.)
The terrible storms in Oklahoma, (our hearts go out to all of the victims) forced us to extend our trip by a day. It just so happened to be a Tuesday. Soon to be known as Texas Tuesday: Tacos, tattoos, and topknots. Rachel had insisted that we hit up Torchy’s Tacos while we were in town. Thank goodness for that extra day, because OH. EM. GEE. Damn good. Damn good. What a way to start our Tuesday adventure. Bellies full, it was off to get our standard Texas horseshoe tattoos. Shelah and Stephanie may have been a bit reluctant, but I had been saving a spot for my sweet souvenir for months. We figured our best bet for walk-in tattoos would be downtown 6th Street. I mean, they’re just set up for tourists, right? Right. All Saints Tattoo came through for us, and we really lucked out with tattoo artist, Hannah. Her portfolio was stunning. Eeeeeep! Plus, I love getting inked by a woman.
Freshly inked and wrapping up our whirlwind of a week, we sauntered back east to our favorite Austin neighborhood for some burgers and corn dogs at Sputnik. Gorgeous pin-up artwork on the walls and great music proved a good choice. We passed the food trailer park, and contemplated our options, but we’ll save that for next time.
As you can imagine, we were pretty wiped out and eager to get home come Wednesday morning. Back on the road at 3:30 am. This time it only took 16 hours. Progress, people. Progress.
Thanks for the good times, Austin. We’ll be seeing you soon. Rrrreal soon.