Saturday, March 18, 2017

One More Day to Go!

Meet Kim Gates from My Honey Bee Sign Shop...
My name is Kim Gates and I am the owner of ‘My Honey Bee Sign Shop’. I create handmade decorative signs from repurposed wood. I am the wife of a military veteran and mother of 4 children, one of which has special needs. By having my sign shop, working from home, and making my own hours, I am blessed to be able to attend all the doctor appointments my son requires, without it interfering with a normal 9-5 job. When I am not making signs, I like to design cakes for family and friends, dabble in photography, and camp with my family.

I have been making signs since last summer but I have been crafting my whole life. I’ve been told that I have never met a stranger. I just love meeting new people and making friends and I have found that craft shows are a perfect way for me to do this. I have a bubbly personality and I hope that shines through when I first meet someone but more importantly I hope it is reflected in my work.
I am inspired to create signs because it makes me happy to design custom pieces for others. I know that they won’t be able to buy these one-of-a-kind signs in any store. When I see their reactions to the finished products it reminds me of why I love doing this. My signs do not look like they have come off an assembly line at a manufacturing facility. They are truly each unique and all made with love. I have also realized that painting helps me to relax and relieve stress. It is like my own version of an adult coloring book. ;)

I made a campfire sign for the campground I was staying at with my family and friends last summer. My friend encouraged me to make more and sell them to other campers. I wasn’t yet convinced that I was good enough to sell them. Then in the fall I made reversible scarecrow/snowman signs for myself and that same friend. She starting showing others the sign and created a buzz. I kept hearing from her that if I made more, people would be interested in buying them. This finally is what encouraged me to start making several different signs to sell and that is when ‘My Honey Bee Sign Shop’ was born.

If I see something that I like either online  or in a craft store, I look at it differently than some people. I think about how it is made and how I can put my own little spin on it. And if I really like the idea then I am compelled to make it. I also love having several projects going at once. Can you tell that I am impatient?? Making multiple signs in various stages allows me to work on them simultaneously.

My five year goal.. I would love to have a permanent spot for my sign shop where I can display my signs and help grow my business. I believe that how you display your crafts at a show is almost just as important as the actual craft. I want to create a fun space for my customers that will get them excited about my sign shop and want to tell others about it. I believe the best type of advertising is by word of mouth.

Meet Celeste Martin from Creations by Celeste...
I have been a jewelry artist selling in Cleveland for 20 years now who is switching gears… I am currently launching a new textile collection at the Avant-Garde Art & Craft Shows! CbyC T-Skirts…Fun*Funky*Affordable

Vintage t-shirts and designer fabrics are used to make these one of a kind upcycled skirts.  I am the designer and creator who sources the vintage T’s and modern fab fabric but I can also create custom T-Skirts because everyone has a t-shirt they no longer wear but can’t throw away!  My current line is adult size XS, S, M, L, the price point is $45.00 for just t-shirt material and $60.00 for t-shirt and designer fabric.
As a jewelry designer I used my creative energy to breathe new life into beautiful bits and pieces of jewelry from the past.  Now sewing takes her back to my youth and I can’t sleep at night wanting to make more T-Skirts a wearable and affordable work of art.

CbyC T-Skirts for the woman who appreciates something special and unique! 

Meet Mari Dickson from Liquid Kitten Designs...
I am a native of Maumee, Ohio, but I've lived in Cleveland for the past 16 years. My degree is in fine art, but I work full time in health care technology. Activities outside of the regular workday have always focused on filling that need to create! A wife and mother of an 8-year old girl, Mallory. I first learned about dyeing textiles in college and also while an art teacher at a school for the deaf in Ghana, when I was a Peace Corps Volunteer there from 1999-2001.
My daughter and I started tie-dyeing about 4 years ago, when she was just 4 years old. Just this year, I decided it would be a great experience for Mallory and me to expand our hobby into a business. I am always experimenting with different media. I paint, I knit, I took up ceramics a few years ago... But with tie-dyeing, it was the comments of others upon seeing an article of clothing we'd dyed together that got me thinking this might be something to expand.
When it comes to inspiration.. I can't pinpoint a single inspiration that motivates me... The older I get, the more I realize that creating is a part of who I am, and that when I'm actively incorporating the creation of art into my life, I feel much more calm and satisfied with life. 

One of my favorite parts of this medium is the color. I can spend hours studying the colors of the dye and deciding what variations to mix and put together. 
I don't think this will become my full-time work, but I hope 5 years from now, the work and income and inspiration is still coming, through both online and face-to-face sales. And I see my daughter growing into this with me, learning not only about business but about the benefits of taking a step back from the rush of life to just relax and create.

I'm not sure there's a succinct or philosophical message behind my work, but my hope is that the work brings joy to others, just as the act of creating it brings joy to me (and my daughter, too!). I also hope that people see that tie-dye can be for more than just hippies at a music festival!

Meet Michael Watson from Gift'd Expressions...
My name is Michael David Watson, I am a Cleveland native and a devoted husband and Father of three. I attended the Cleveland institute of art, where i discovered my call to ministry, graduating from Rhema Bible college with an associates degree in Pastoral Ministry in 2008.
I have been painting since i was a little boy. I watched Bob Ross on Sunday mornings, and learned to immulate his techniques. I didnt truly come into my own unique expression until high school where i developed a successful portrait business. I stopped painting due to illness in 2004 and only recently started painting again and selling my work online in 2014.

I feel that i am inspired by God, and a lot of my work is prophetic in nature, meaning it captures and extends the heart of God to the world through a pure artistic filter. These expressions tend to be biblical in nature as I am strongly inspired during worship and in the presence of God.

I often visualize a finished project before i completely dedicate myself to conceptualizing an idea and then bringing said idea to life. Because of this, i view my process as more of a translating of images and ideas into sketch, capturing the inspiration of the moment, later expanding my study to a finished work on canvas.

Other times I like to listen to worship music while i paint in a more spontaneous fashion, finding most of my brush strokes and gestures being formed by the rythm, praise, and dance. This method of painting is equally essential as part of my Craft is live painting in church worship settings.

My five year goal... I would Love to see myself expanding the shop and potentially traveling with my wife taking Gifted Expressions art ministry abroad.

The message behind my work says strongly that God is always speaking, and his love is always flowing! If we listen and take a moment to capture what he is saying - we will find our hidden Gifts activated and flowing in new and amazing directions.

Find more of my Biography @

More Photos and Info about The Shop @

Meet Marie Schram from Triad Homemade Creations...
We work at Triad Residential Solutions and work with adults with disabilities.  They make all of our soaps and candles by hand.
I (Marie) have been crafting most of my life and wanted to expand to soaps and candles. Now we hand make them at work!

Our five year goal.. I hope to have our own store so we will be able to sell and give our clients jobs to work at the store!
The message behind our work is that no matter what disability you may have, you are still able to accomplish anything you put your mind to!

Meet Brian Farmer from B. Farmer Honey...
I am an INTJ personality. I have an insatiable curiosity. I'm a jack of all trades and master of none.  I have around 100 hives of honeybees in the Central Ohio area.  I also grow hardneck garlic and have 1/4 acre of thornless blackberries that I sell at farmers markets. 

I have been keeping honeybees for about 11 years now.. I am in the process of tearing down a church built in 1866 and salvaging materials.  I intend to make reclaimed wood shelves, hand hewn beam fireplace mantels, and other crafts. I like being able to salvage the 150 year old materials and give it new life, rather than seeing it all end up in a landfill.
What inspires me to create? I have to do something with thousands of pounds of honey each year!

How I got into my hobby... 20 years ago, I got a second job helping build folk art Noah's Arks for the Millwood Toy Company.  20 years later, I still cut out all the animals for the arks on my scroll saw.
Much of my woodworking skills are a direct result of Barry Grosscup's influence at the Millwood Toy Company.

I got into beekeeping when I was working as a machinist.  A co-workers dad had a stroke and was unable to take care of his bees anymore.  The co-worker asked me if I would be interested in some bees, and the rest is history.

For craft ideas, I do tons of Google searches, check out Pinterest and Etsy, and I also go to craft and home decor shows to get ideas too.  I also look at what reclaimed and salvaged materials I have, and then try to figure out what to do with it all.

Five years from now I'll still be producing honey in 5 years, and hope to have a farm market store at my property.  I am going to have enough reclaimed lumber from the church I am dismantling to do crafts for the next 50 years.

The message behind my work is that there is no bee-pocalypse.  There is no danger of bees going extinct.  We have more hives of honeybees in America now than we have in the past 30 years.  Don't believe the sensationalist tabloid propaganda the media feeds you about all the bees dying.  There are many successful beekeepers doing great, but good news is not a good news story.  The media finds the bad beekeepers with the sob stories, and portrays it as the entire industry.

I have over 100 beekeeping videos on YouTube, with over 1 million views.

2017 Rocky River Spring Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show
Sat. March 18th (10am-5pm) & Sun. March 19th (11am-5pm)
Rocky River Memorial Hall (Next to Rec)
21016 Hilliard Blvd.
Rocky River, OH 44116
For more information, contact Becki Silverstein, Event Coordinator at
Visit us on:

Friday, March 17, 2017

It's Show Time!

Meet Barbara Hubert from Eagle Wings Art...
Hi, my name is Barb Hubert and I am a retired Cat Scan Tech for over 5 years now and I was lost!  I was looking for a purpose and hobby after I retired, and I thought I would try watercolor, because I’ve always loved these paintings.  After just 1 year with a friend/teacher, I took off and now after only 5 years and never painting a day before that, have over 200 + original watercolor paintings, plus prints of my paintings and print blank notecards.  I feel this is a gift that God has given me, so I give back to Him! 40% of my profits go to help, The Cleveland Pregnancy Center or the Bible League Int’l. 
I love painting, using different mediums, like real leaves, salt, saran wrap and anything else to make my paintings different and unique!  I love to experiment!  I am inspired by all of nature around me, and I marvel at the works of God! I, always, always have a painting in process! I can see a scene as I drive along somewhere and I want to paint it!  You will find birds, animals, owls, landscapes, children’s art, modern and abstract art from my business, plus I will have new and beautiful spring and summer birds and floral paintings! Look for new Spring note cards, they're very attractive!
I’m putting a lot of work and effort into building my business, as I feel this is one of my purposes and gifts God has given me.  I hope my business grows, and I can just give back more to God! Now look for my scripture options Paintings that are new!

I  have participated in many previous Avant-Garde showsn  and love how they are advertised, and the wide variety of customers they bring in! I plan on being in most of the Spring Avant-Garde Shows!  Hope to see you there!

Meet Jo Ann Carrier-Lawrence from Landford Bead Works...
Jo Ann Carrier-Lawrence is a bead maker and jewelry designer from Ohio. In 2008, Jo was bitten by the lamp work torch on a whim. Purchasing a small start up glass bead kit, she began teaching herself to make glass beads.  These were used to finish her hand crocheted necklaces.  As Jo learned various techniques her bead world exploded and she began showing her work at local art shows.She has studied with bead artists and followed tutorials from hundreds of artists around the world in her desire to create beads that touch on an organic and natural look.
Each bead is its own individual work of art, the flow of the melted glass and the opportunity to create these unique beads is where Jo Ann finds her obsession.
Jo lives on the shores of Lake Erie with her husband, John, where she has tantalized him with the torch and he is an active partner in her passion and business.

They hope that you enjoy the artistry of each bead and each piece of jewelry that they create. 

Meet Candice Adams from the Haute Bohemian...
Hello, my name is Candice Adams and I live in North Royalton with my husband and dog Levi.   I graduated from the University of Akron in 2011 and I am a high school intervention specialist for Lorain City Schools.  During the summer of 2016 I decided to design and create jewelry with the goal of opening an Etsy shop. This will be my second  Avant-Garde Art and Craft Show and I am very excited! 

I am a lover of jewelry and fashion, which sometimes gets me into trouble with my husband!!  
I began experimenting with jewelry making when I was 10 years old. Every summer I would visit family in Michigan and I would spend time with my older cousin creating jewelry using seed beads.  I have amazing memories of visiting a bead store that had me hooked on the jewelry making scene.  My creative process comes from being inspired by nature.   When I was younger I collected rocks and gems and loved to explore caves.  

Every piece of my jewelry incorporates a natural or semi-precious stone which reflects my love for nature.  My jewelry can best be described as having a bohemian/ free spirited style, which inspired my Etsy shop name, The Haute Bohemian.  I really enjoy creating jewelry that is one of a kind and hope to continue for years to come. My ultimate goal is to learn to solder so I can create rings.  I have several of my items located at Salty Not Sweet on West 25th Street in Ohio City. I hope you like what you see and stop by to see me at the next Avant-Garde Art Craft Show!  

Meet Susan Boyle from the Artful Folder...
Hi, I’m Susan , I live in Slavic Village and I am a volunteer for PAWS Ohio, a foster home rescue for stray and abused dogs, cats, puppies and kittens. Of course, I have several furbabies of my own.   
I started book folding about a year ago after I purchased one at an out of state craft show.  The one I purchased was the word “music” and when I saw it I just thought it would be a great gift for a friend who loves books and loves music.  I was hooked on trying to figure out how to make these myself.  I know many people, like myself, who love the smell of books and being in libraries and with the ereaders now, books may be a thing of the past. I thought it was such an interesting concept of creating something special using these books for that unique gift for someone.   
If I can I try to find a book that relates to the picture that I’m folding or if someone has a favorite author I will try and find a picture that can be folded into the book.  Also, the books can still be read; you just have to unfold the pages. I hope others feel the same way I do about the uniqueness of these books.  

My name is Naomi Heckman from Chocolate Treasures..
I have been making chocolate candy now for about 15 years. My grandmother raised me and always had me in the kitchen with her cooking and baking. My favorite was baking by age five I could make a pie all by myself.

Fast forward to now, I started making candy in remembrance of my husbands mom. His mother made candy and Easter was her busy time. My husbands father asked me if I would like boxes of chocolate molds since I liked baking and being in the kitchen.
One thing led to another and in past 7 years I started doing craft shows and selling. Each year I add more shows.My husband and family all pitch in help!!
My creative side.... it's kinda hard to explain ideas just sometimes pop in my head. I love making candy and best part is when someone smiles and enjoys it.

Meet Sarah Hamski from Sarah Hamski Art...
I am a Westside native, I am married and also work as an Art Therapist and Counselor.  In my free time, I love to read, hike, and binge-watch Doctor Who and Mystery Science Theater 3000. As far as making and showing art, I have been doing this since my sophomore year in college as an art student, about seven years (time flies!)
What inspires me..  I have a kind of handful of things that each seem to have their own season. I am often inspired by books of multiple genres. I think I am most inspired by really well written (and quirky) fiction. It doesn’t matter from what era. I am also inspired by music.When I started making art intensely as a kid, Alternative Rock was really my staple (like many pre-adolescents I’m sure). I still love Alternative Rock but also have recently taken an interest in all sorts of music, from Classic Rock to Blues and Jazz and even EDM. Finally, my spiritual life and practices are a huge inspiration and a huge motivation to continue working.

How I got into my craft.. I don’t know if I was ever not into it…there were always art supplies around as a kid and I was constantly drawing. When I entered high school it just seemed totally apparent to me that I’d go on to some sort of career in the arts, which I am blessed to have done.
My process is somewhat strange in that in some aspects it is unchanging and yet in other ways it fluctuates. My ideas always seem to grow out of times of quiet- the medium of how I address that time of silence changes from prayer, to reflection in journaling, to reading. Once I have an idea, I will sometimes go at it all at once with the camera or on the canvas, just to see what will happen. Other times, I will reflect on it further, often in a sketchbook. Regardless, in the end, when I do go to create a piece, I still end up just exploring, playing, and letting the piece create itself. For example, I may have the idea to shoot the Metro parks in the Winter. Though to start I will have some semblance of a plan and intention, when I get there I just shoot away at whatever I find is remotely intriguing. Working in digital allows me to get away with taking 700 shots in one trip. Then, in the editing process, I decide which shots merit further editing or are worthwhile of being considered a final piece. This process has allowed me to shoot a variety of wildlife that I think I would have ignored otherwise in trying to stick to a rigid plan or firm idea.

My five year goal.. growing! Late 2016 and early 2017 have shown an increase in both gallery showings and entering into the art/craft show world. I hope this trend continues and I am working to make sure this happens.
The message behind my work is that reflection, prayer, silence, and similar experiences (you pick) are important and worth fighting for in our packed schedules and lives that are paced at dangerous speeds.

My website that houses not only my photography work but my paintings and ceramic sculptures as well is: My photography is available for sale 24/7 at my Etsy store, Finally, you can also follow me on twitter to see what I’m up to in the studio at @SarahSaturnine.
2017 Rocky River Spring Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show
Sat. March 18th (10am-5pm) & Sun. March 19th (11am-5pm)
Rocky River Memorial Hall (Next to Rec)
21016 Hilliard Blvd.
Rocky River, OH 44116
For more information, contact Becki Silverstein, Event Coordinator at
Visit us on: