I've been married to an awesome man for 38 years. We have two grown sons with two grandchildren. We live in Mantua, Ohio. I've been crafting for 1 1/2 years. This will be my first Avant-Garde show.
I see something that someone is throwing away and wonder what I could do with it. I get a lot of great ideas from magazines, Pinterest, and the best source - other crafters!
I currently work full-time. I hope that in 5 years I can replace my full-time job with what I love to do!
Meet Bob & Ruth from Chocoteer Chocolates...
Bob & I (Ruth) are business as well as personal partners, which makes for a interesting and fun combination. Bob handles the business side & I the creative side, with input from both. Combined we have 4 grown children, & 3 grandsons, with one more on the way.
Chocoteer Chocolates has been open since January, 2013, but I have made different chocolates & candies for 20+ years. This will be Chocoteer Chocolates' first show.
When I come across a spice, smell, flavor that I like, I have to try it with chocolate. I tend to like bold flavors. It can be hit & miss until I come up with the right combination of flavors & chocolate, but it is fun and interesting to try. What is the worst that can happen?
I like everything chocolate; I wanted to do one thing and one thing well. I decided to do chocolate bars only, but with different combinations of flavors. I also make them in milk, dark, & white chocolate. My creative process is simple, when something pops into to my mind, I try it. If it works fantastic, if not, I try again with something different or a different combination until I am satisfied with the end product.
I believe in promoting eating pure, natural foods. I use only the finest ingredients, without any artificial ingredients, dyes, or preservatives. My chocolate bars are made in small batches, hand poured, and hand wrapped by us.
Chocoteer Chocolates has its own literacy program called READ ON. We believe that every child deserves the chance to read and to own at least one book that is their own. Reading is the greatest gift we can give our children, we read every day of our lives, and is the foundation of learning everything else.
We take 10% of our sales (excluding shipping costs), and buy books from local authors and book stores and give the books to children.
Meet Barbara Berkesch from Backwoods Leather...
I work full-time in the cell phone industry, but I have a lot of hobbies and other interests that keep me busy. I've shown and bred Great Pyrenees for over 30 years and have completed championships on about 20 dogs. I learned how to scuba dive about 20 years ago and take a dive vacation every year. I enjoy hiking and volunteer for the Medina County Park District in their Trail Monitor program.
I have been doing leather craft for about 20 years. It started when a friend gave me a leather key ring in the shape of a Great Pyrenees, I thought it was pretty cool and I wanted to learn how to make one. I went to a leather store and took lessons on how to tool and how to work with leather. I also joined a leather guild that was active at that time where I gained more knowledge on techniques and different styles. I also subscribe to a publication of leather crafting which provides other ideas and techniques.
I always thought I did not have a creative mind but I do find myself looking at an object I like and then picture in my mind how it can be put to leather. For special requests I use my mind to figure out how to complete the project before I even cut a piece of leather or trace a pattern. I cannot free hand a design, I need to trace a design and then make changes to accommodate the pattern that I'm working on. My expertise is in the tooling of the leather to create the 3 dimensional affect.
I believe there is beauty in nature and leather and wood have wonderful grains that I think enhance the beauty of whatever I'm making. When I make hiking sticks I use sticks that have fallen from trees, nothing live is taken. Sticks are chosen for their shape and strength. After they are sanded the finish goes on and then the natural beauty of the grain shows through. The dream catchers are made with quartz beads and real suade lace. The necklaces are made with leather beads and stone focals.
I hope to retire in 5 years from my full time job which would give me time to devote to my hobbies. This would also give me weekends off so I can participate in more craft shows. The Summit County fall show will be the second show I've participated in for Avant-Garde.
Meet Rachel Jones from Crochet by Rachel...
My name is Rachel Jones. I am a stay at home mom who runs her own business. I have an amazing husband and two beautiful children. I have a passion for what I do. I love to crochet and create fun fingerless gloves and baby blankets. I also do little girl hair accessories, but, I love the gloves because they are something a bit different and they really add some pop to an outfit. I love to help women stand out and feel unique. I make gloves for men and they love them for their practicality.
I have been crocheting for five years, but I just launched my business this past September. The show in Fairlawn will be my first!
I am inspired by my kids, by styles I see in magazines, by colors, really anything different inspires me. I can see a pattern and think to myself, “wow, that would be great as a glove!!”
I have always loved handmade clothes and accessories! I practiced and practiced for hours! I think I evolved into what I do now, I don’t think it was so much a discovery as it was a process and evolution of what I love to do and who I am.
I usually watch sci-fi shows, such as Grimm and Harry Potter, the fashion in those productions inspire me and get my creativity flowing!
I plan on exporting all over the US and hopefully in Australia.
Dream big and don’t be afraid to be who you are. Being unique is a blessing!
Meet Susan Kurtz from Susie Kays...
I am a mother of three school age children, who is fairly new to Ohio. The family has moved many times, and my crafting has kept me sane. I have a Bachelor of Arts in Design, and I am also a graduate Jeweler Gemologist. I have always had a love for sparkly items, starting from when I was very young. I would sneak up to my Grandmothers Attic and try on her sequin dresses, and all of her rhinestones. I love taking something, and creating something different with it.
I have been in the jewelry industry since the 1990’s, and have been crafting as long as I can remember. I revisited the sewing machine only a few years ago when I started creating the up-cycled mittens. That turned into Brooch bouquets, but I always return to my first love, jewelry.
I become inspired to create by my general lack of non-creating. Sounds strange, but if I do not create something for a few days, I get this urge. One day it may be to sew, one day it may be to bead. Vintage items inspire me, and I love turning them into something unique.
I left the jewelry industry when I had children. By creating my own items, it enabled me to stay at home with them. I opened my Etsy store in 2011.
I have always been artistic. I enjoy working with my hands, and my mother taught me to sew. I have a good eye for design, and create things that I would want to have for myself.
A bouquet usually starts with a color, or a specific brooch that I will work around. I group them by size and shape and work out an appealing design. The wool sweaters inspire the mittens. The jewelry is usually inspired by something that I would actually want to wear.
I would hope that I could still make a little “mad money” by selling my craft items. I don’t need to be the biggest; I just hope to make a little extra from my work. I enjoy working with Brides, and love being involved in such a special day.
Create what makes you happy.
My Etsy Store- https://www.etsy.com/shop/SusieKays
Facebook page- https://www.facebook.com/SusieKaysKeepsakeBroochBouquets?ref=hl
Facebook page- https://www.facebook.com/SusieKaysKeepsakeBroochBouquets?ref=hl
2013 Summit County Fall Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show
Saturday & Sunday October 19 & 20, 2013 11:00am-5:00pm
St. George's Fellowship Centre
3204 Ridgewood Rd.
Fairlawn, OH 44333
For more information, contact Becki Cooper, Event Coordinator
Visit us on: