Michelle Perkins || Speakeasy Works

Qween City is thrilled to be highlighting the city & region’s myriad artisan makers this holiday season. If you would like to be highlighted in the Craftiste directory, please shoot an email to [email protected].

How long have you been an artisan & business owner in Buffalo?

I have been a textile artist in one way or another for most of my life—but doing it as a business for about five years.

Where are you located in the city / region?

My business is based in my home, in the Elmwood Village.

Please describe your work / product; if applicable, please include your artist / personal statement or mission.

I create home and personal accessories, using vintage, custom, and handmade textiles—often with hand embroidery, screenprinting, or block printing. My style leans toward the quirky and colorful, often with a helping of local flavor. I focus on creating special objects that are meant to be used in everyday life—from whimsical or kitschy handbags, totes, and clutches to funky table linens and comfy pillows. I love creating things that feel special and meaningful to the person who uses them.

Who are some of your favorite artisans / makers in the region?

I love the work Lætitia Desroches does at Atlas Concept Store. Christa Penner (of ShopCraft) and Jessica Gadra both do amazing illustration work in very different styles. Nicole Cooke’s letterpress creations are awesome! For jewelry, I adore Donna Sturges Enamel—colorful creative pieces that go just as well with a dress as with jeans (she even made my wedding jewelry!).

Where will you be representing your wares this holiday season?

My work is available year-round at Thin Ice, Wild Things, Buffalo Adore, Nickel City Designs, and Good Day Sunshine. I’ll also be at several holiday markets:

11/25—Women’s Gifts (Babeville, 10am–4pm)
11/26—Hotel Henry Holiday Brunch & Marketplace (Hotel Henry, 10am-2pm)
12/1—Artists in Buffalo Open Studios
(Lafayette Clay Collective, 286 Lafayette Ave, 5-9pm)
12/2—Artists in Buffalo Open Studios
(Lafayette Clay Collective, 286 Lafayette Ave, 11am-6pm)
12/3—Artists in Buffalo Open Studios
(Lafayette Clay Collective, 286 Lafayette Ave, 11am-6pm)
12/10—Hotel Henry Holiday Brunch & Marketplace (Hotel Henry, 10am-2pm)
12/14—Last Minute Panic Holiday Marketplace (WNY Book Arts Center, 4-8pm)
12/15—Last Minute Panic Holiday Marketplace (WNY Book Arts Center, 10am-5pm)

If there’s anything else you’d like to include, please feel free to do so below!

To me, one-of-a-kind art that was made by a real person has a richness and appeal that can’t be touched by anything mass-produced, so that’s the special experience I provide for my customers. One element of this is incorporating vintage textiles and embellishments that are both eco-friendly and difficult to replicate. Whether it’s a funky lining, a vintage zipper, a kitschy buckle, or some cool buttons, most of my pieces include some element or accent that makes them as individual as the person who owns them.