On the Go

Style on the Go: Thursday, April 30, 2009

By Lavanya Ramanathan
Thursday, April 30, 2009; 12:00 AM

Over the past several years, a funny thing has happened to waves of tattooed art-school graduates, stay-at-home mothers and those girls in high school who were always making their own jeans.

Some have taken their passions for glue and yarn and bottle caps and studs and turned into business-minded alt-crafters, folks who screen-print vintage ties and make plush toys in the shape of toast -- gasp! -- for profit.

For folks who want to take their hobby to the next level, there is the Summit of Awesome, a new three-day conference about getting into crafting, turning a hobby into a business and even going green.

"We're all artists. We all think on that side of the brain that has no business sense," says Kim Dorn, one of four organizers of the summit and one of the forces behind the annual Crafty Bastards market.

So, at unusual venues such as Solly's, DC9 and Cafe Saint-Ex, alt-craft vets (including Etsy.com chief exec Maria Thomas) are hosting sessions on branding, photographing your work, selling successfully online and, ugh, collecting tax. (Who knew that knitting could be fraught with such land mines?)

Not sure you're at this level yet? Saturday from 8 to 11 p.m. at Miss Pixie's Furnishings and Whatnot is the blissfully free Show of Awesome, a nighttime craft market that gives the summit speakers a chance to hawk their wares (many for the first time in Washington). Or tomorrow night, get an overview of the nationwide movement at 8:30 p.m. at Theater J, where there's a screening of "Handmade Nation," the new documentary by Faythe Levine (tickets are $10).The Summit of Awesome runs tomorrow through Sunday. Registration is $180 for the entire event; Friday only is $75; Saturday sessions are $85; Sunday sessions are $50. Register in person (beginning at 9:30 tomorrow, 9 a.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. Sunday) at Miss Pixies, 1626 14th St. NW. For online registration and a full schedule, visit http://www.hellocraft.com.

Get tickets now for the area's best events

Girl-power singer Pink is heading out on her first tour since 2006, and what does she do? Theming it Funhouse, a concept that just happens to sort of echo Britney's Circus behemoth. The tour, which stops at the Patriot Center on Sept. 28, promises just as many fireworks, including dancers swinging from the rafters and a party-starter opening band, the Ting Tings. Tickets for the concert are $39.50-$49.50 and go on sale Saturday at noon through Ticketmaster (202-397-7328) and the Patriot Center.

"Rent" may have been evicted from Broadway last summer after an impressive 12-year run, but that doesn't mean the rest of us have to go without those earnest rock ballads and our favorite druggie-vixen, street drummer and other East Village bohemians with hearts of gold (but lots of problems). The show is coming to Washington! "Rent" originals Adam Pascal and Anthony Rapp are among the cast members who bring the musical to the Warner Theatre May 26-31. Tickets are $45-$80 and available through Ticketmaster, http://www.ticketmaster.com or 202-397-7328.

Lovely and lyrical St. Vincent (a.k.a. Annie Clark) once played guitar for Sufjan Stevens, and it's evident in her elaborate, chime-filled pop. She plays the Black Cat on May 22. $15. 202-397-7328 or get tickets in person at the box office, 202-667-4490.

The District

Concert The Kills

The rock band might be aiming for mainstream greatness with plugs on "Gossip Girl" and the like, but it has a genuinely menacing stage presence that still appeals to the fans who liked the Kills back when they were a bluesy indie-rock outfit. Alison "VV" Mosshart and Jamie "I May or May Not Be Kate Moss's Next Baby Daddy" Hince are at the 9:30 club tonight. (Last time they were in town, at the Black Cat, Kate turned up, so star-stalkers, consider this advance notice.) With the Horrors and Magic Wands. $20. Doors at 7 p.m. 815 V St. NW. 202-265-0930 or 800-955-5566 or http://www.tickets.com.

The District

Literature Nikki Giovanni

The legendary poet, activist and Virginia Tech professor concludes her new collection of poems, "Bicycles," with the momentous speech she delivered on Tech's campus after the 2007 shootings. But "Bicycles" ultimately is about love, and as she told Bill Moyers in an interview this winter -- it's the falling off and getting back on. She reads from the book tonight at the newest Busboys and Poets. Free. 6:30-8 p.m. 1025 Fifth St. NW. 202-789-2227 or http://www.busboysandpoets.com.

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