Friday, March 6, 2020

Meet Some of Our Rocky River Vendors!

Meet Jackie Pecon from Babies Comfort Design...
Hi, my name is Jackie Pecon. I’m an Eastlake resident of 14 years and I find the area very nice. I’m a mom and a grandma that loves her grandkids. Other grandparents play with their grandkids and send them home. I want to keep them. I work full-time and sew the rest of my time. I’m very busy with craft shows and my Facebook page featuring all of the items I make. 
I have been sewing for many years. Every time there would be an occasion of someone getting married, having a baby or even getting sick, I would make a quilt, baby blanket or a throw blanket. It would bring a smile to their face and they knew that someone cared enough to take the time to make something so lovely. A few years ago, my daughter had her own daughter and the question was raised about what can the baby wear to keep her warm and safe inside the car. It has been a big concern that small children cannot wear coats in car seats because it has been found unsafe. The coat adds bulk and they have found that the child can slip out of the car seat on impact. So I got to thinking, did some research and that’s when I started making Car Seat Ponchos and Car Seat Covers. All the seat belts go under the poncho or the car seat cover. Car Seat Covers provide them with privacy and protects them from the elements and unwanted touching. 
I started making NOT your parents sleeping bags. I never knew what a big hit these were going to be. It started off as a gift to my granddaughter and then took off from there. I have so many prints and colors to choose from. These are perfect for going to grandma’s house, daycares or even the overnight Girl Scout camp outs. They fit perfect on the cots.

You can fine me on Facebook

Meet Jess and Liz from Telluric Studios...
Hello! We are Jess and Liz, the founders of Telluric Studios. Telluric Studios is a small design studio that specializes in handcrafted home goods. We met in architecture school at Kent State University, and have subsequently redirected our this passion towards experimenting with small scale design and materials such as concrete and clay. 
Telluric Studios was created in 2019, and focuses on producing objects that are inspired by local nature. Many of our designs incorporate found materials such as glass, driftwood, and rocks from Lake Erie. In designing new products we honor the materials by creating new forms that amplify their natural characteristics. Telluric Studios has been a therapeutic, creative outlet that allows us to bond with each other as well as nature. 
Through choosing a name for our business, we expressed our mutual affinity and appreciation for the earth and its gifts. "Telluric" means "of the earth" and the symbol we chose represents the Divine's intervention with the earth. The 2020 Rocky River Spring Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show will be the Studio's official public debut, and we are very excited to meet new people and share our work!

Meet Holly Zewalk from Zewalk Jewelry...
I’m a graduate of the Cleveland Institute of Art with a BRA in illustration and a minor in ceramics. I grew up in a family of artists, my mom is a painter. My father started with enamels before switching to lost wax casting of jewelry. Both of my parents had exhibited in a number of local art festivals. Personally, I have done a few local exhibits with my ceramic sculpture work. 
This will be my first Avant-Garde show but over the years I have exhibited work in Clifton Music and Art Fest and another show that is no longer around. Since 2014 I have been an exhibitor at the Berea Alive and Well art fest that is held in September with the jewelry. I hope to expand to be doing more shows as this is just a hobby for now.
Over the years, I made my own jewelry creations that my dad created and casted into silver and sold. It was just recently when my father was terminally ill that I learned to do the casting process and have taken over the process of making the jewelry. Instead of sculpting in clay, I’m creating in wax. The message behind my jewelry is one of a kind handmade pieces that will be cherished for years to come. 

Meet Milka Ambler from Eklektik Motef Studio...
My name is Mikki Ambler. I am a mother of two grown boys and happily marring for 20 years. I am the Creator and Lead Designer of Eklektik Motef Studio- Forever Wood Flower Decor. I worked as a Healthcare Administrator for two leading Dialysis Companies in the Cleveland Market for nearly 17 years. I grew tired of the pull between work/life balance, or lack there of, so when our youngest was in his senior year of high school, essentially leaving me and my hubby empty nesters, I saw this as an opportunity for me to “Do Me!" So that is what I did. I resigned from my leadership role and responsibilities, took 5 months off to enjoy the remaining months of our sons senior year, and here I am. Living my best life! I work full time at NASA and at Eklektik Motef Studio. That is where you’ll find me working in the evenings and weekends and I couldn’t be happier!
I have been creating my beauties for nearly 20 years on and off and mostly during the winter holiday season. It really just started as a hobby for me. Since I find to have more time on my hands, my drive to recharge and jumpstart my business is at a peak. At first, it was something for me do when our children were little tikes that didn’t include football and LEGO’s. I would participate in seasonal craft shows throughout the years to earn extra money and found many people enjoyed my style and creativity. So, when time permitted or no work interruptions I created my ”beauties”. Family and friends always complimented my work and began requesting custom orders and the rest is history. Now I am able to do what I absolutely enjoy more frequently and without interruption. 
There really isn’t any rhyme or reason as to how I create what I do. It just kind of happens, if that makes sense. Each one of my “Beauties” is as unique as my customer. I have strong listening skills, when my customer tells me what he/she wants, I deliver. If I’m preparing for a show I ask myself, what will put a smile on someone’s face? What “Beauty” can I create that will bring joy into someone’s life”? Brining a smile and creating happiness for someone via my Forever Beauties inspires me. Following my dreams and ambitions to work for myself full time is inching closer and my supportive family gives me the drive to put my creativity in overdrive.
Each one of my Forever Beauties is as unique as each person I come in contact. My goal is for every Eklektik Motef Studio piece to bring joy and happiness to all. Flowers are an expression of love and gratitude, we all need to be reminded of this every now and then. What better way to express how you feel about another and/or yourself? Give the gift of Wood Flower Decor-they are sustainable and eco-friendly. 

2020 Rocky River Spring Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show
Saturday and Sunday, March 14 and 15, 2020
10:00am-5:00pm on Saturday
11:00am-5:00pm on Sunday
Rocky River Memorial Hall
21016 Hilliard Blvd.
Rocky River, OH 44116
For more information, contact Becki Silverstein, Event Coordinator at
Visit us on:

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

It's Show Weekend Rocky River!

Meet Ashley Fehribach of Furball Fanatic...
My name is Ashley Fehribach. I grew up in Westlake/North Olmsted and I currently live in Avon. I am married to my high school sweetheart and we have 2 fur babies Desmond and Zoey. I have always loved to craft and go to craft shows with my mother. It has been a dream to work with cats and now I have the best job making toys for cats as well as making items for cat lovers!
I have been sewing since high school but I didn't start to make my own cat toys until early 2014. December 2014 is when I opened my online shop. I had a very detail oriented and analytical day job. I was craving some creativity, so in my free time I would work on craft projects at home. I am always thinking of fun things to turn into toys. I try to create unique toys that you wont find at pet stores and toys you would actually want to see your kitty play with. Some of my favorite toys are the pizza slices, donuts and fortune cookies!
I learned to sew when I was younger and would often make gifts for family and friends. I started to create my own cat toys after I saw a need for fun unique cat items. Once I have an idea of what toy I want to make it all starts with creating a pattern. Once I have the pattern created I will cut out a few sizes of it in felt and sew everything together. My cat toy testers Desmond and Zoey are always up for testing out a new cat toy! They help me decide if the shape and size is right. They really are the best co-workers!
My goal is to make cats and cat owners happy! These cat toys are not just for the cats but also for the owners. Its hard not to smile when you see your cat kicking around a pizza slice! In five years, I would love to see Furball Fanatic in more retail stores. Currently I am in a few local stores but I would love to branch out!
This will be my first time participating in an Avant-Garde Craft show. I have, however, attended many of them as a shopper!

Meet Ashley Smith of Amarie Metals....
My name is Ashley Smith and I'm a full time jewelry artist from Olmsted Falls, Ohio! My other passions are painting, flow arts/circus performance, weaving, and traveling! I have been creating jewelry for about 5 years. I have been fabricating for 4 years.
I dropped out of nursing school after feeling the itch to discover something more fulfilling to me. I have always had a creative side, but never really allowed myself to explore it. I fell in love with wire wrapping, but felt it was very limiting and wanted to expand my abilities. I decided to major in Crafts, with a concentration in Jewelry/Metals/Enameling at Kent State. It was a wonderful program and I had a lot of amazing mentors along the way such as Rachel Suzanne Smith and Andrew Kuebeck.
I love to collect gemstones and mineral specimens so I am constantly surrounded by inspiration! I like to begin by choosing a gemstone or material that catches my eye and start designing around it. I always have a rough sketch before starting, but I like to view it as a suggestion, not a complete blueprint which allows each design to evolve organically. I am very inspired by patterns in nature and many of my pieces have a message of environmental sustainability. I strive to work ethically, including sourcing my metals and gemstones from reputable and ethical companies!
My ultimate goal is to have a brick and mortar store that functions as my studio and a place to teach lessons (I love to teach!). This will be my first time at Avant-Garde!

Meet Emily Collins of EmTree...
I am Emily Collins from Toledo, Ohio. I am a graduate of Ohio University with a Bachelor's Degree in Retail Merchandising and Fashion Product Development and an Associates Degree in Art History. I have always been an artsy individual - I picked up drawing and painting at a young age and began finding other creative outlets throughout the years. With EmTree I've finally found my niche!  At my primary full-time job, I am a lead of Audio Operations for an entertainment service provided by local libraries. In my spare time, I enjoy reading novels and comic books. If I'm not making soap, my nose is in a book! My favorite genres are sci-fi & fantasy and adventure.
I've always been into the arts and working on crafts. I like keeping my hands busy and challenging myself by trying new projects. I have been making soap for 11 months and other bath and body products for about four years. Last Holiday season, I wanted to make my co-workers a gift and I thought "why not soap!" I gave them each a bar and many asked how they can get more. I saw this as my shot to finally start EmTree which has been a 'brain child' of mine since 2015 when I started with making natural body butters for family members.
In the EmTree creative process, I start with designing a soap and finding a fragrance to match the design. Once a collection and possible theme is complete, I start creating the soaps. I've been working on seasonal collections which have been a big success and each soap is really fun to make! The people that inspire me to create are my family members, friends, and my supportive community! EmTree couldn't be what it is today without them. Additionally, I use creative influences of some of my favorite artists - Van Gogh, Monet, Ritcher to name a few. I see my products as small works of art for all to enjoy.
EmTree is about showing and experiencing how plastic-free and eco-friendly products can fit into everyone's daily life. By going plastic-free, you're creating less waste, it's better for your body as many plastics contain toxins, and it's also a money saver in the long run! There are so many great benefits for you and the Earth by being eco-conscious. EmTree wants to be one of the leading bath and body artisans to show you how beautiful plastic-free can be.  Eventually, I hope EmTree is my only full time job and I will have grown my line of products to serve a variety of customers, maybe even a store front! The Rocky River Avant-Garde Show will be my first event and I am so excited to share EmTree with everyone!
2019 Rocky River Fall Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show
Sat. Nov. 16 (10am-5pm) & Sun. Nov 17 (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, November 8, 2019

Holiday Shopping Starts Now, Rocky River!

Meet Kristen Teitenberg of Naught Too Shabby....
Hi, I am Kristen Teitenberg, owner of Naught Too Shabby in Rocky River, Ohio. Naught Too Shabby is a home décor store filled with an eclectic mix of new and used décor for your home.  I recently expanded, opening a DIY Workshop Studio to hold classes and private parties to teach others how to be crafty and create while having a good time. Some of the classes I offer are wood sign making, furniture painting, metal jewelry stamping and kids crafts and parties. I have about twenty-five years of crafting experience and about ten years experience of painting furniture! This will be my second Avant-Garde Show.
I started doing crafts after I had children. It was a great way to spend time with them and I loved seeing their faces of joy when they made something and were so proud. We use to paint Christmas ornaments for our tree every year and it was amazing to look at all of them on the tree from all the years and how they just got better and better.  When they started growing up and wanted to be social with their friends instead of hanging out with their mom, I started going to garage sales and estate sale and finding furniture pieces to refinish.  I loved being able to turn something old into something that looked like I just picked it up from Arhaus.  Painting furniture and crafting is very calming for me. I enjoy it. It is my passion.
Besides Pinterest, Instagram and other social media, I enjoy going to garage sales and estate sales to find inspiration. I usually will find a piece and have a vision of what I can turn it into.  I don’t always know what color or what I am going to do, but I can see potential in a piece. It’s just a feeling.  I usually try to find unique pieces, something you can’t find in just any store.
I discovered my talent by just being persistent and trial and error. Pieces I have refinished have not always turned out perfect or exactly the way I envisioned but there is always someone that loves it and wants to take it home!  When I see an item that calls out to me. I look at the bones of the piece first to make sure it’s not falling apart and it can be cleaned up nice. Next the piece will go to the shop, then the brainstorming starts….. should I paint or leave as is and renew the wood, what color should I paint? Should I paint it a neutral color or something that pops? Sometimes this can take a month or two or a year. It just depends when the lightbulb goes off on how I envision it. Then I prep (sand, repair, clean). Once it’s all clean the fun begins, the painting (the part I love). Lastly, I put a top coat on the piece for protection and sit and admire! It always amazes me what paint can do. Sometimes I even get sad when it finds a new home!
Five years from now I see myself mainly focused on the DIY Studio Workshops.  I love teaching others how to create and love that I can give them that confidence. The sign making parties are very popular now and I do love how much signs add to a home. It’s nice to see people gather with friends, family and neighbors to paint and at the same time take home a professional looking sign that they want to hang in their home. I love working with children too and am excited to offer Birthday parties and kids crafts.
The message behind my work is that “anyone” can create. I have watched so many videos, read blogs and have learned from so many other creators. It amazes me how many Facebook groups I am in of business owners sharing their knowledge to help others succeed. Sometimes people need guidance and just need confidence that they can do it. You just have to try. Everyone has an imagination. When I hold classes, I can give everyone the same instructions and the same paint colors and yet they still always look different.  It’s a beautiful thing!!!

Meet Lynn Pelka of Lynn Patricia Designs...
Creating my handbags and accessories brings me much joy.  I love working with the fabrics and textures making a classy looking handbag that may be just right for you.  We, as women, look for a handbag that is specific to our needs whether it has pockets, zipper closer a certain kind of strap/handle.  I create my handbags with a full front pocket to hold all your important items at your fingertips with soft webbing handled for a comfortable fit. Also offered are handmade zipper pouches, mini wallets and lip balm totes as well as special character handbags for the little girl in your life.
Even though I’ve been sewing since childhood, my business began when I launched an Etsy store in 2011, listing my very colorful handbags, tea bag wallets, and water bottle totes.  With experience over the years, my design has settled down to a more classic handbag style in neutral colors.  Things have blossomed and I am now established both at indoor and outdoor shows.
It is always a pleasure meeting and chatting with those who stop at my booth.  The future looks bright with the hopes to one day retire from my day job as an office manager at a dental practice and participate in as many shows as possible.  
I’ve found the Avant-Garde shows to be expertly done with vendors who produce beautiful and interesting items making for an enjoyable shopping experience.  So, I hope you will enjoy your day at the show and be sure to stop by and introduce yourself as a one who has read this blog!

Meet Bernadette Hisey of Nanaknits...
I am a retired music teacher with one grandchild who lives on the other side of the country!  I fill my time knitting by day and performing in musical theatre and dramas by night.  Many of my items were partially knitted in a dressing room somewhere! I'm excited to say that this will be my first event with Avant-Garde.
I learned how to knit when I was very young.  I started doing more complicated patterns when I was in college.  I set it down for a long time (while raising children and pursuing counted cross-stitch).  About 3 years ago, I joined the prayer shawl knitting group at our church.  They truly inspired me.  After knitting many prayer shawls, I started searching for more ideas.  Thank God for Google and YouTube!  After knitting fingerless gloves for all of my female relatives, I thought - I could do this as a business.
I was inspired to do this when I saw fingerless gloves that were embroidered on Pinterest.  I had never embroidered.  I also noticed that no one in America was posting such gloves.  So, I taught myself how to embroider and got my inspiration from Pinterest.  Most of them, I created as I went.  After making many gloves, I branched into baby items, scarves, hats, and my own idea - Mobile Mittens.  I come up with a theme and pattern and then knit as many different colors of it as I can. I have other themes I can't wait to try out, but, I'm still knitting the colors of my present theme. I have so many more ideas in my head and I can't wait to put them on my needles.
Knitting has always been a part of me off and on throughout the years.  It was just a culmination of events that lead me here. In five years, I may branch out with a website for custom orders, or sell on Pinterest or Etsy.  For now, I'm trying the craft fair route.
Knitting is a passion and also therapeutic for me.  It takes a lot of time to create one item, but it's very rewarding when I can add it to my inventory.  I'm hoping that what I've created will make people smile.

2019 Rocky River Fall Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show
Sat. Nov. 16 (10am-5pm) & Sun. Nov 17 (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 22, 2019

Less Than 24 Hours to Go!

Meet Colleen Ward of Colleen Ward Studio…
As an artist and photographer, I find so much joy in creating things, capturing memories and connecting with all types of people. Cleveland is my home but I love traveling the world. I'm fascinated by introverts, people who love numbers and scary movies - I'll never understand. My mom is my hero and gave me a love for fresh flowers, hospitality and the ability to make friends with a doorknob.

My mom is what got me into art. Besides being superwoman, she was always very crafty and innovative in her own ways. She always encouraged me to step out and try everything. I've been an artist my whole life, but I fell into this style of painting about 4 years ago. I'm still discovering my talent. It's a process that I'm overwhelmed by. I always want to be pushing myself to learn and be better. I believe talent is God-given and our only responsibility is to use it and be grateful.

As artsy as it sounds, I'm inspired by people. We are all different, full of depth and texture - not one the same. My process is to start, stop, walk away, come back, tweak, and let it be done. You always know when it's done. I'm often asked what is the message behind my work, but I don't always have an answer. Sometimes, I'm inspired by a story or a place but most often music plays a big part. I've found that if I'm too planned out, I mess it up. I like to go with the flow and see where it leads. My favorite part of the entire creative process is when someone is connected to a piece and tells me how they feel or what they see. In five years, I would like to be doing larger custom work in people’s homes or commercial spaces.

View more of my work at:

Meet Michelle Root of Chocolate 143…
My business is Chocolate 143! I make gourmet chocolate treats that are really fun. I try and make something that makes your party extra special by making treats that no one else has personalized or theme created so that each treat is a reflection of you to make your event stand out but at an affordable cost. We make some of our own molds so I am able to offer some items that can't be found elsewhere on chocolate such as some of my BB8 from Star Wars or Pokémon. I have been doing this for about 2 years and we offer chocolate treats for parties, weddings, graduation, holidays and any other kind of party. 
This is the fourth Avant-Garde show that I will be participating in. My good friend Angel from Fallen Angel told me about your shows and I was accepted and have done very well and am excited to have received a following of customers that has also lead to many orders.  I have been concentrating on doing larger, exclusive shows like Avant-Garde and getting away from smaller shows. I will be signing up for many other Avant-Garde shows and concentrating on that customer base.   
I made chocolate with my mom as a little girl and didn't continue making it as I got older due to work, family, and just general life. I started making it again for schools treats and my son's friends. All in a sudden people would call me asking me to make some for their child's birthday party or for a platter at work and so on. Now I have a calendar filled with future orders. We pride ourselves in offering the typical chocolate treats but also new things or themed items that give your party that personalization to make you stand out. My dream is to have a chocolate shop where I could devote full time to making chocolates. It is such a great feeling when people see my stuff and say "OMG! THAT is an Oreo cookie. It is too cute to eat". The message behind my work is to create something fun and something different that makes people smile. 

Meet Amanda and John Lambert of Lamb Baked Goods…
We are a husband and wife team. Amanda handles most of the baking while John handles bookkeeping and homeschooling our two kids. He also helps in the kitchen as needed. Amanda has been selling baked goods out of our home since 2012 but has been baking most of her life. Chagrin Falls will be our second Avant-Garde show and we're looking forward too many more.
Amanda gets her inspiration from whatever she sees around her and whatever others ask her to create. She got into baking for 4H at around age 8, where she realized that she could put artistic expression into her foods and has continued to refine it from that. In 2012, she started selling her goods at garage sales and it has continued to grow since then.
Amanda scours Pinterest a lot for ideas that she can make into her own. She sometimes received requests for certain things and tries to make the vision of the customer come to life. Our five-year goal is to continue full time with craft shows, growing nearer to Jesus and shining Him to everyone we encounter at shows. Our primary message is John 6:35: "Jesus said, 'I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will not hunger, and he who believes in me will never thirst.'" A secondary message is Psalm 34:8a: "Taste and see that the Lord is good."

2019 Rocky River Spring Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show
Saturday and Sunday, March 23 and 24, 2019
10:00am-5:00pm on Saturday
11:00am-5:00pm on Sunday
Rocky River Memorial Hall
21016 Hilliard Blvd.
Rocky River, OH 44116
For more information, contact Becki Silverstein, Event Coordinator at
Visit us on: