Friday, February 15, 2013

4 of 4! Artists Inspired By Family & Nature!

Meet Courtney Richie from "Courtney B Designs"...
I'm a homebody. I love the rolling hills of Southern Ohio where I live. It's gorgeous here. I have a small homestead that my husband and son help me to care for. We have a big black horse and a tiny French Bulldog, just over a dozen chickens for eggs, a pair of Nubian goats for soaps, milk, and cheese, and a couple of spoiled cats. 

I am happiest here, and now I am making my living here as well. Life is good.
I'm not from around here. That's something that people notice in these parts. I come from "the city". Mine happens to have been the Washington, DC area. I grew up in the suburbs and dreamed of this kind of life, even when I was a child. Eventually, I found it ... and peace and quiet (well except for roosters crowing). But first, I was surrounded by hustle and bustle. I blocked it out with art. Always making things, I found a joyous juxtaposition in creating art. I was blissful in the solitude of creation, and yet felt a greater connection with the universe and life itself. Ceramics held my first epiphany. I loved creating in 3D! I took a sculpture course, and my professor complained to me that I kept my scale much too small. He told me I should look into jewelry. So I did just that.

At 18, I began my apprenticeship to a master goldsmith and jeweler. During the next 15 years of creating wearable art, I learned the use of torch, the movement of metal, and even the grading of precious stones.
Then I found a new love: lampworking. Melting gorgeous, colored glass rods with a torch into tiny sculptures and beads became my joy. The minute details and all their possibilities were addicting. There in the fluid medium of molten glass, I found Zen. I have been flame working glass for over 12 years now, and I cannot stop! I spend my days blissfully rolling the glass in the flame. Trying new designs and incorporating metal work into my pieces keeps me fresh and grounded. I love to find inspiration in ancient civilizations. I'm especially drawn to the Celtic cultures in history.
I'm full steam ahead and SO EXCITED! Come help me make my next chapter a success! This will be my first show with Avant-Garde Art & Craft Shows, and I am very excited to be a part of this great venue!

Meet Cher Mitchell from "Old Time Crafts"...
My name is Cher Mitchell and I am the owner of Old Time Crafts. I'm a mother of two adult children and one on the cusp of adulthood. My time is spent thinking of new ways of making art that will reflect my ideas and thoughts. Maybe bring a smile to someone's face when they look at my glass creations. I started working with stained glass October of 2012. I wanted a way to express myself and the things I believe in.

This show is my very first show with Avant-Garde Art & Crafts Shows. I have been researching this company and find they are a heartfelt business that always tries to give back to the community, exactly what I believe in. I'm proud to be a part of this show and call it my first.
My creativity generally comes from my surroundings, the Bible, my children, nature, pets, my friends. Ideas from people wanting to see things that aren't made from a machine are my best art projects. I was looking for something to fill the empty time I had and be able to express myself. To fulfill a need to the community with a message through art. I like the idea of making something and it having a different meaning to fit each person in a different way. I wanted to start my own business to not only express and support myself, but to support a way to give out free Bibles to people-a way to give back to the community.
My creativity starts with a thought or a picture. That will evolve into putting it into a organized message. What I want it to say or what other people will get out of it. Then I think of how it should look in the simplest form to put it on glass. How each score line will break and the colors of glass to use. Then the process of making it come to life begins.
Creating a story or a piece of nature on a beautiful collage of glass is like being a botanist coming up with a new hybrid flower. A creation no one else made, but something someone else can enjoy. I want to give the idea and message through my work that God is with us and we can see it in the simplest form to the most complicated forms. To give people joy in His word through my work and have something nice to show it through.

Meet Ashley Warnock of "Fancy Froggie"...
I live in Hilliard and have been married for 2 years. We have a 15 month old son, Cason who I stay home with. He keeps me very busy! I enjoy running and spending time with my family. 

I have been doing various crafts for six years, and have started doing shows in the past year. This will be my first Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show. 
I get my creativity from anywhere I can find it! I love getting inspirations from Pinterest and Etsy. 
I first started with scrapbooking and it has grown from there. I love trying new things! Since I stay home with my son, it's nice to have a little spending money and I love meeting new people and seeing their ideas.
I enjoy being able to make items specifically for others. It also gives a strong sense of accomplishment when a project turns out just the way you envisioned it! I think it's very relaxing and it's my quiet time to re-groupI like to create things that are practical and can serve a useful purpose.
2013 Columbus February Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show
Saturday, February 16th 2013, 11:00am-5:00pm
St. Agatha's Parish Hall
1860 Northam Rd
Columbus, OH 43221
For more information, contact Becki Cooper, Event Coordinator at
Visit us on:

Thursday, February 14, 2013

3 of 4! Artists that Keep You Colorful!

Meet Emily Hoffman from Mommy's "Free Time"...

My name is Emily Hoffman; I am a stay-at-home mother of 2 beautiful children, a 2 yr old daughter and a 7 month old son.  I enjoy spending my "Free Time" working on crafts, baking, and planning events.  I have a strong love for the outdoors, animals and my family.
I've been doing crafts as far back as I can remember, however, I I just began selling my items in December of 2012.
I get my creativity from my mom!  She always had arts and crafts for me to work on when I was a child and it all just stuck with me!

As a stay-at-home-mommy, I felt like I wanted to contribute to the family financially but I didn't want to leave my kids and take on a full-time position somewhere.  'Mommy's "Free Time"' has allowed me to continue staying home with my precious babies and also be a part of financially providing for my family.
Handmade comes from the heart! I put a lot of heart into what I do and I enjoy watching others enjoy my products. The message behind my work is: Family. Love. Support.

Find me on Facebook!  I like to do giveaways :)

Meet Bethany Mitchell from Ladybug Designs...
I'm a single mom to a wonderful 4-year old little girl! I got into creating handmade items as a way to relieve the stress of everyday life and distract myself for a few hours. Once I really got into it, I realized very quickly that not only did I love creating things, those around me began asking for me to create things for them and thus Ladybug Designs was born! I have been creating for about 18 months now.

I get my creativity from the necessity of life. I will often look around my home and think, I want a throw pillow here or a wreath on that door and the idea explodes from there. Pinterest has become my go-to for inspiration as well, that site is an absolute gift to the world of designers and crafters!
I first got into the craft hobby while traveling for work in Salt Lake City. I met a woman there that taught me how to make paracord bracelets.  I was fascinated by what I could create with my own hands.

My friends and family were constantly asking where I bought a skirt, bracelet, pillow, wreath, etc. When they realized that all of these items were coming from my own two hands, starting the business was a necessity to fulfill the wants of those around me.
My creative process is simple. Much like the movie line from Field of Dreams: "build it and they will come", I think "make it and they will buy." I can be inspired by nearly anything...once I'm inspired I HAVE to act creatively on it.

The thing I enjoy most about creating unique items is just that: they are unique items. I love making and selling paracord items the most because I love hearing "I've never seen something like this before!"

My message is simply that life is more beautiful with a handmade item in it! I love store bought items as much as the next person but a handmade item carries meaning with it that a store bought item never will.

2013 Columbus February Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show
Saturday, February 16th 2013, 11:00am-5:00pm
St. Agatha's Parish Hall
1860 Northam Rd
Columbus, OH 43221
For more information, contact Becki Cooper, Event Coordinator at
Visit us on:

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Possums and Pups! 3 out of 5!

Meet Jamie Gregory from Howling Husky Bakery...
I've been an animal lover for as long as I can remember. In fact, I was surrounded by a constant menagerie of pets throughout my childhood including dogs, cats, rabbits, sheep, goats, and horses. My interest in animals and agriculture led me to become very active in 4-H and FFA. My experiences in these organizations encouraged me to attend The Ohio State University and pursue a career in Agricultural Education. I am currently a high school Agricultural Science teacher and FFA advisor in central Ohio. 

I'm so excited to share my love for animals and baking by opening Howling Husky Bakery as a side business. I hope that my products will enable others to express their love for their furry friends also!

I was definitely born with an entrepreneurial spirit and I've always dreamed of having my own business. After exploring many different creative endeavors, I've discovered my true fit with starting a home-based pet bakery business. Howling Husky Bakery was officially launched on Etsy on January 25, 2013. 

This will be my first Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show! I'm very excited to participate in this great show!

I am somewhat creative and artistic by nature. However, I often need to find inspiration to help me bring my own creative thoughts to the surface. Some of my favorite sources for inspiration include: Pinterest, Etsy, art, music and other media, brainstorming with other creative individuals, and observing the world around me.  
I've always loved creating, learning about, and viewing arts and crafts. I constantly yearn for opportunities to express my creativity in various ways (drawing, writing, sewing, cooking/baking, etc). When I was in college I started seeking ways that I could share my creativity with others which eventually led me to Etsy and the creation of Howling Husky Bakery!

I've always wanted to start my own business, it was just a matter of figuring out the "who, what, when, where, how, and why". Within the last year my husband and I have tried to focus on eating fresh minimally processed food. Recently, it dawned on me that I could provide the same type of nutritional quality to my dog by making him homemade dog treats. Howling Husky Bakery has enabled me to combine my love for animals with the ability to provide them with wholesome, all-natural, homemade treats. 

My creative process is actually pretty simple. First, I research ideas for recipes, making sure to avoid any ingredients that are harmful for dogs. Then, I gather up all of the ingredients that I need and the baking begins. Making dog treats is a very comfortable and even relaxing process for me since I work in my own kitchen and I usually have some good music playing (Mumford & Sons and the like). Each time that I develop a new recipe, its taste-tested by my own Siberian Husky named Siqua and has to earn his "tail wag of approval" before it is sold to any customers. Finally, the treats are bagged, labeled, and ready to be enjoyed!
The thing I love about creating handmade unique items is knowing that someone appreciates your items (that you have created with your own two hands) enough to buy them. Also, knowing that someone somewhere is enjoying life a little bit more because of your item is an amazing feeling. 

The message behind my work is that our pets, unlike some people, love us unconditionally. Why not return that love for your pet by providing them with wholesome, all-natural, homemade treats?

Meet J. Bird Cremeans from Antique Pet Photos...

My name is J.Bird (yes "J.Bird") Cremeans. I'm from lovely West Virginia and have wanted to be an artist all of my life.

I've been making the Antique Pet Photos for a little over a year. Like everything else I've found success in I started it as a joke and it went extremely well!

I get my creativity from my sense of humor and love of animals. I love pop culture and comedy/horror/action movies and quirky TV shows. 

I've been drawing for as long as I can remember and had wonderful and encouraging art teachers along the way. The thought of being an artist for a living always intrigued me.
I decide I wanted to start my own business because I love working for myself and wanted to see my art in stores and on people's walls.

When it comes to my creative process I describe it as "lot's of time with Photoshop"!

My favorite thing about creating my portraits is seeing people's expressions when they see what I make. The message behind my work is d
on't take things so seriously! I make art that is meant to be fun.


2013 Columbus February Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show
Saturday, February 16th 2013, 11:00am-5:00pm
St. Agatha's Parish Hall
1860 Northam Rd
Columbus, OH 43221
For more information, contact Becki Cooper, Event Coordinator at
Visit us on:

Monday, February 11, 2013

The Countdown Continues 2 of 5!

Meet the Ladies from Chimera Sisters...

We are three sisters from a very close-knit family who have very different day jobs but a common bond of appreciating creativity in ourselves and others. A common thread (no pun intended) through our individual hobbies is a desire to create artistic items that are useful as well as beautiful.
Collectively, we have at least 30 years of experience in crafting – mostly for gifts to give to others on holidays and birthdays – and have only recently considered selling our work.
This is our first arts/crafts show of any kind, ever!  And we are very excited to make new friends and share our enthusiasm for our hobbies with others.
We get our creativity from restlessness... a desire to make one’s mark on the world, an innate human drive to mold nothing into something.
No one trigger that can really be identified that made us start our business; it just sort of happened gradually for each of us, after dabbling in all sorts of arts and crafts: drawing, sculpting, painting, jewelry-making, sewing, photography, crocheting, mosaic, etc.
Our favorite part of doing this is the excitement to see what the rest of the world thinks about something we love doing!
Our creative process would best be described as mysterious, spontaneous, and indescribable.
We really love the endless variety in what we do. We don’t get bored because no handbag, no painting, no necklace, no vase is ever exactly the same as the last you created.
We believe in art that is reasonably priced that everyone can own and enjoy!  We want you to really like an item we make because it’s useful and lovely to YOU.

Meet Melissa Harvey from Mel's 'Zels...
My name is Melissa, and I'm the owner of Mel's 'Zels, a start up gourmet pretzel concept. I create one-of-a-kind hand dipped pretzels, using quality and fresh ingredients. I graduated with a Marketing degree from The Ohio State University in 2011, and have always enjoyed creating new delicious desserts. What started as a hobby and has turned into a passion that I’m excited to share with others!
This will be my first Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show. I’m looking forward to meeting new people and admiring all of the talented vendors!
I started my business because I have an 8-5 job, and I wanted to find a fun hobby to keep me busy after work.  Although a “professional hobby test” recommended rock collecting (really?) for me, I figured pretzel designing was much more enjoyable! :)
I enjoy the freedom and creativity that starting my own business creates. I like testing out new product and packaging ideas and learning from my failures and successes.

I’m always thinking of new flavor ideas. I try to experiment with my creations – sometimes they work, and sometimes they don’t. It’s always a learning process until I get it just right.
The  message behind my work is redesign birthdays, holidays, weddings, graduation parties, and more with Mel’s ‘Zels. They are delicious!

Meet Kathy Maur from Gallifrey Farm Goatmilk Soaps...
I am a wife, mom to five great kids, grandmother, goat herder, farmer and soapmaker. We raise Nigerian Dwarf Dairy goats, egg laying chickens, fruits and vegetables. We moved to our farm in Marion Ohio about 16 years ago and have had dairy goats for about 13 years.
My husband is my biggest source of inspiration and creativity. We had been raising the dairy goats originally as a 4H project with our children and made cheese and fudge with the goat milk. I was complaining about the condition of my severely dry chapped hands one day when it was suggested to me to make soap out of the milk. 
As I began to do research into this area, I was so surprised to learn how commercial soaps are mostly detergents and synthetics that clean your skin but do nothing to heal or moisturize. Because of that, I developed my own combination of fresh goat milk, butters and oils and have never looked back. My family and friends started using it and as I received more and more requests, I realized I could make a business with the soaps. Not to mention, I could keep raising the little goats that I've come to love.

After researching all of the various combinations of butters and oils and settling on my own recipe, I found that I loved the individual molds for the soaps much more. These were more fun for me than cutting them from large blocks. It requires much more time and materials, but I have a greater pride and satisfaction in my finished product. As my business grew, I was able to buy more molds so that now I can put each scent into it's own shape.
The thing I enjoy most about what I do is knowing exactly what goes into my soaps and choosing the shape of the molds to coordinate with the scent. This is always a lot of fun. Of course getting return customers is the best satisfaction!
The message behind my work is that it’s possible to get clean without drying your skin. And it's fun to use a soap that cleans as good as it moisturizes and smells!

2013 Columbus February Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show
Saturday, February 16th 2013, 11:00am-5:00pm
St. Agatha's Parish Hall
1860 Northam Rd
Columbus, OH 43221
For more information, contact Becki Cooper, Event Coordinator at
Visit us on: