Interview With Ottawa's Fashionista Jewely Gee of the Festival Flea

Ottawa Arts News - What is Festival Flea ?

Jewley Gee - "The Festival Flea is a travelling flea market that sets up shop at electronic music festivals, events, parties, backyard bbq's and or other random renegade locations! It's curiously curated on a per event basis and features a plethora of deluxe hand picked vintage clothes & oddities as well as other undefinable glorious goodies. Sounds vague but it's a flea market, and really - anything goes. It's always changing as items are coming and going. We Always have vintage though - Vintage is our backbone."

Ottawa Arts News - When did it start and how?

Jewely Gee - "We started the Festival Flea for a few reasons but mainly because we love festival culture and the music that goes along with it. The reality is, we don't party as hard as we used to and we really need to have a reason & a purpose in order to actually attend these festivals. So as I looked around my living space at the time I thought - I could sell this stuff at the festivals, I could sell my clothes even, I could sell hula hoops and candy and all sorts of other things because I know what these people want because these are MY people. So, we hibernated in a small town for the winter in order to launch this thing in the summer time. We spent a few weeks curating and styling for a photo shoot - shot everything in a day then spent another few weeks editing the heck out of the shots. Everything was shot on a green screen so we could have any image we wanted as a background and the minute we uploaded to Etsy, we were on fire! The reality of selling online is so blah blah and it was OK for the winter, but when vendor applications started to open up for festival season we sent a few off to the ones we could afford and the rest is history really. Now we only do real life pop up shops because human interaction is where it's at."

Ottawa Arts News - Where do you find / source your goods?

Jewley Gee - "A savvy business woman never tells her secrets. BUT, I will divulge this bit of info: we LOVE to support the artists and makers in our local community. We seek out (as well as accept applications) artists, artisans, designers, makers, what have you, and feature a selection of their goods in store. This year we have Pluma feather earrings from Ottawa (and we are down to our last few pairs!), House SM rave gear / party wear from Toronto, Dandelion Sun Teas from Toronto, original artwork (prints) from Toronto artist Laura Vegys and tapestry's from Tempol in Ottawa! Our whole deal is that we have a little something of everything and if you seek, you shall find!

Ottawa Arts News - How can people in Ottawa and Gatineau find you when you're not at a festival?

Jewley Gee - "You must send out a homing pigeon - he (or she) will know where to find us. One day we will list some info on the Triple Seven website and in the meantime you can find us on Facebook or Instagram @thefestivalflea #TFF"

Ottawa Arts News - Tour Dates?

Jewley Gee - "Festival season is wrapping up for us right now and our last festival of the season will be Alweezgrooven onAug 19th to the 21st. We will be at the Concept Orange Halloween Party in October as well as the annual Easy Company 420 Jam in April."

Ottawa Arts News - Cool Stories?

Jewley Gee - "Our first festival gig was at Valhalla Sound Circus in 2015, we really had no idea how our offerings would be received, but we were confident they would be. On the last day of the festival we closed early so we could hear a few of our friends play. When we arrived at the stage at least 80% of the people were wearing something they had picked up at the booth! My heart swelled with happiness at the sight of it all!"

Ottawa Arts News - Needs? Wants?

Jewley Gee - "We need a new structure for the 2017 season, we are hoping to acquire an old vintage 18 foot trailer and renno it to be a permanent "store front". This will make our lives SO much easier as the setup and tear down can be a bit much sometimes. As for wants, we want people to start donating their Value Village donations to US instead of that evil Walmart owned and operated empire."