Wednesday, April 23, 2014

From wood, to wire to jewelry... We've got you covered at the Columbus show!

Meet Ray & Karen Mesnard from Rusty Star Prims & Country Angel...
Currently we (Ray and Karen) work as a team. Karen has worked with primitive woodcrafts for twenty years and Ray started about three years ago.  Karen had initially started college majoring in Art, and Ray majoring in Electrical engineering.   Circumstances took us away from those majors, but time brought us together, each one doing something they like very much.  

Ray does the cutting and assembling of the woodcrafts and Karen paints or decorates to make the finished product.  We both have always liked antique houses and furniture because they seem to have a character all their own. We find that primitive woodcrafts accent and compliment antique furniture and country decor. It is still difficult for Karen to paint anything in bright colors and Ray is learning to like the primitive "look" better each year.  

We both find it very rewarding to create something that we may never have seen before.  Or perhaps we can take a piece of wood and make it look old so that we can admire the woodgrain or style of the piece that we make.  We usually start by finding five or six patterns that we like and changing them around to fit our ideas. We then imagine where it might be used in a home, and by adding words, decorations, unique paint colors or various unusual styles, develop it into a usable object. 

In the past, we have sold wholesale, exhibited in art and craft shows all over Ohio, sold in Berlin (Amish Country) and retailed from our home.  We gain great joy in knowing that our customers enjoy the object they purchase and hope that it will bring them 
pleasure for many years to come.

We hope to still be doing this wonderful form of wood crafting as long as we are able to do so.  A part of our hearts are in each object that we make.  

Meet Bill & Mary Byrley from The Polished Stone...
We appreciate the many gifts in our life. These include each other, our children and grandchildren, our health, and the opportunity to engage in the creative activity of jewelry-making.We have been making jewelry for nine years and the May, 2014 show will be our second Avant-Garde show.

We began making jewelry after taking a couple classes at the William Holland School of Lapidary Arts in Georgia.  We quickly found we wanted to learn and work more with stones and metal. Our interest has grown into a business, and we are excited to keep learning and creating and our inspiration comes from the magnificence and wonder of nature.
The creative process for us begins with the gemstones themselves.  As we look at them we begin to see how the stone might be incorporated and highlighted in a piece of jewelry. The process continues from there as we bring gemstones and metal together.In five years we see ourselves well-established in bringing gemstones and to others in the form of jewelry and gift items. We plan to continue participating in arts and craft shows, as well as having our work visible through our website. The message behind our work is embrace and enjoy the splendor of nature.

Meet Susan Sitko-Edwards from TulaTula...
I am happiest when I can find the time to design something and create something unique. Since I was young, I loved crayons, paints, colored pencils, clay and just enjoying the pure joy of creating something. I loved going through my mom’s button box or going through her jewelry box and looking at all her clip on earrings and things she had gotten from her mom. I even liked garbage picking with my older sister, we would take the wagon up the street and come home with treasures.
For one of my birthday’s I was given a book on rocks and quartz. I use to stuff my pockets with rocks coming home from school and hit them with a hammer in our garage hoping to find quartz or jewel inside. Making something out of things I could get my hands on just felt natural and was how I wanted to spend much of my time. 

 Recently, inspired by a woman at an art show who designed wire and stone jewelry, I started to dabble in jewelry design. I made a little space for me in the basement, tried to make it cozy and put a space heater nearby. For over a year I dove in. I visited the library often and was happy that they had some newer books on various jewelry making techniques.  

I am still learning so much. I am inspired by so many things I have seen in a lifetime and experiences I have had. I would like to incorporate found items into jewelry and have found a few things at a local thrift and antique store.   
I sell mostly necklaces, but like to make bracelets and earrings. I am focusing on making some newer bracelets that are easy to get on and off since women are busy, and need to run out the door and can’t fuss with tricky clasps. Also, if arthritis is an issue or motor skills are impaired, it is nice not to have to struggle putting on jewelry.

The Avant Garde show is my first juried show. I am trying to spend carefully, design thoughtfully, and to be myself and to be creative  My goal is to make nice jewelry which is well made, fun, and something that goes with blue jeans yet is versatile.
I make jewelry because it fits into the season of my life right now. How far I go, it depends on whether people choose to purchase it. It is challenging and it has an element of thrill and frustration-such is art. I just hope to appeal to persons who appreciate handmade over department store goods.

2014 Columbus Spring Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show
Saturday, May 10th, 2014, 10:00am-4:00pm
St. Agatha's Parish Hall
1860 Northam Rd
Columbus, OH 43221

For more information, contact
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