Meet Lindsey Ahrens from Lindsey Ahrens Jewelry...
Hello! My name is Lindsey Ahrens and this is my second time participating in the Avant-Garde show. I’ve been making jewelry off and on since I was in high school, selling things to friends. I was reintroduced to beading after spending hours with my daughter at a bead store while on vacation in Florida.
I get my inspiration from seeing other jewelry and the types of things my friends wear. My seven-year-old daughter also helps me, as she has a great eye for designs. I enjoy putting together different beads and materials to create various designs to construct unique pieces. While I’ve made and sold jewelry to family and friends in the past, I only recently started selling in retail stores, craft shows and online.
As a past customer at the Avant-Garde shows, I’m honored to be a part the show this year. You can also view more of my work at my Facebook page at: www.facebook.com/lindseyahrensjewelry.
Meet Barbara Gorman from Driftwood Designs...
I have been retired since 2007, after working as a clinical dietitian for Cuyahoga County for almost 30 years. Unfortunately, my retirement wasn’t by choice, but the result of an accident. I had a fall and suffered a traumatic brain injury. Amongst many losses, I lost my ability to speak coherently and wasn’t able to return to work. A portion of my therapy involved stringing beads to encourage my brain to be more focused.
So, my therapy was actually the beginning of my fascination with making jewelry. A couple of classes later in soldering and I was off and running. I started doing shows rather slowly. I remember that first church basement show. I only sold a couple of pieces, but I loved doing the show. Today, shows are my primary venue for selling my jewelry.
I have always been artistic. As a young kid, I remember, on vacation, scrounging through last night’s bonfire for a few half-burned sticks of charcoal to draw with. Working as a scientist all my adult life, I always had the feel that there was an inner artist in me, just “trying to get out”.
I am inspired by numerous things in my environment. I use the natural materials that exist near where I live: beach glass, beach rocks, driftwood and any other debris that washes ashore on the beaches of Lake Erie. I see jewelry designs in architecture; in fashion and certain aspects of nature (I love flowers and leaves). I am also inspired by the “cluttered workbench” process. I leave most of the random parts & pieces leftover from a project out. Very often I will see some new combination that will inspire me.
There is no overall theme to my jewelry, but many customers describe my work as having “simple lines, with a Zen-like quality”. Sounds good to me.
My husband is my biggest supporter. He’s retired also and lugs the giant tent and tables to all of my shows.
Meet Ellen and Sandy Dublo from Vintage Lites...
Sandy is semi-retired from Miceli Dairy Products as a production supervisor. Ellen is employed by Cleveland Clinic Home Care as an Admissions Coordinator Nurse. We are married, living in Strongsville. We have been making lamps for about 5 years, but have been selling them only since last fall.This will be our first Avant Garde Craft Show.
Ellen has always has a creative side. I sew, knit, paint, do tile and workworking- always open to new ideas. Sandy is the golfer. Together we enjoy music and sing in our church choir.
We enjoy tasting wines and saw many examples of wine bottle made into lamps. However we decided to put our own twist on this process with adding a shade, stacking the glass grapes to create dimension, and adding the cork. We try to stay true to the style of the bottle. The glass grapes should enhance the shape and color of the bottle.
How we got started.. We gave a lamp to friend who owns a wine store for his birthday. Later he told us several people wanted to buy his lamp, but he did not want to part with it. So we stocked a few in his store, and the rest is history.
We enjoy doing this as a couple. Sandy cleans the bottles, drills them, and strings the lights. Ellen takes it from there. We derive satisfaction with recycling materials in a pleasing way. We have also done work for people who have a special bottle that is meaningful to them and want to preserve it into a lamp.
The message behind our work is that we LOVE wine! And we love sharing the gracefulness of the lamps with others who appreciate wine as well. Just FYI, we do NOT empty all those bottle ourselves - we have lots of friends who "help" us!
Meet April Hardin...
I’m happily married (12 years) and we have a son named Kanyon (he’s 4). Marie, my sister, has been married for 26 years and she has 3 children (Anna, Sean and Ian) and an adorable grandson named Mason. :)
I’ve been crocheting for about 12 years, but only started making and selling hats and accessories this year. Marie has been crocheting for as long as I can remember! This will be the first Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show for my sister and I!
Where we get our creativity from.. The girls in our family have always had knack for arts and crafts. It just seems to be something natural for us.How we got into our hobby… Our great grandmother taught my sister how to crochet and then when I was old enough, my sister taught me. It’s something we both truly enjoy. We love being able to make something that someone can wear or give as a gift. It’s a good feeling.
What made us want to start our own business? It’s a great way to make some extra money and it’s enjoyable. My goal is to have this as a nice side job once we decided to add on to our family. That way I can work from home and spend as much time with my children as possible.How would we describe our creative process? Both of us use the crochet skills that we have and incorporate creative ideas from many resources such as books and on-line sites. We are always open to suggestions and requests. By being open to requests, we can make the products people want, the way they want them.
We really enjoy about our work is seeing the smile on people’s faces when they find something they fall in love with. Plus, having something handmade and unique makes you stand out from the crowd and that’s kind of fun!
The message behind our work is that all of our items are made with love and care and we want to extend that to the people who decide to purchase one (or two) of our items. :)
Check out these featured vendors at the 2012 West Side Fall Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show. This eclectic show will feature up to 200 of the most talented artisans and crafters. A portion of the show's proceeds will be donated to Drink Local. Drink Tap. a local non-profit that works in communities to educate people about our local water sources and also helps orphans in Uganda gain access to clean drinking water.