Bennington is Back!

Southern VT Art & Craft Festival, August 1-3 at Camelot Village in Bennington VT

Bring your friends, bring your kids, bring your parents! The Southern Vermont Art & Craft Festival is back August 1-3 at Camelot Village in Bennington, VT!

With 150 art, craft, and specialty food Exhibitors, this festival is a shoppers paradise. Live music, comic juggling, great food, beer, wine, craft demonstrations, and the Kid Zone children’s area provide entertainment for all.

Visit the Southern Vermont Art & Craft Festival page for details about the weekend, and head over to Artist Listings to see who is coming. Then plan out your weekend adventure in picturesque Bennington. We’ll see you there!





Art and Cynthia Baird

 

Art and Cynthia Baird are a husband and wife exhibiting team who travel to festivals and fairs together during the summer and autumn months and sell their handcrafted creations. Art is a potter, working from his studio in an antique barn behind the couple’s 1870’s home in the Adirondacks. Cynthia is a weaver, creating beautiful handwoven scarves and table textiles.

Art and Cynthia Baird

“The sights, textures, and rhythms of the natural world in our garden, in the woods near our house, and in the Adirondack wilderness shape the way I think about my work,” says Art. “I find insights in design, glazing, and surface decoration from Japanese folk pottery, the major influence on my work, and from 19th century American salt glazed pottery.” He mixes his own clay and glazes, believing “that mastery of every aspect of ceramics from raw materials to finished pieces is essential to being a potter.”

Read more about Art’s approach to his work and the couple’s history at www.artbaird.com. And be sure to stop by their booth at the Saratoga Balloon and Art Festival!





Southern Vermont Art and Craft Festival Back Again in Bennington

After a rousing success in 2013, the Southern Vermont Art and Craft Festival is returning to Camelot Village in Bennington August 1, 2, & 3. 150 artists and artisans will display and sell their own handcrafted creations. The exhibitors will be housed in Camelot tents. In addition to the arts and crafts, there will be a Kids Zone, a food court, music, comic juggling, and Vermont Craft Beers.

Bennington was without a major craft show since the American Crafts Council departed Mount Anthony High School in 1972. In 2013 Craftproducers brought its famous Southern Vermont Art and Craft Festival to Bennington. This event had been held at Hildene in Manchester for nearly 30 years. When Hildene announced that its Meadows would be converted into agricultural pasture land, Craftproducers was left without a venue for its summer show as well as the Manchester Fall Art and Craft Festival. As Necessity is often the Mother of Invention, Craftproducers listened to the overtures of the Bennington community and decided to move the Southern Vermont Art and Craft Festival there. Craftproducers Fall Manchester event was successfully moved to The Practice Tee at Riley Rink in 2013.

Now in its second year in Bennington, word has gotten out among the artists and artisans. ‘Bennington is back!” Seemingly, memories of the former craft show in Bennington were vividly alive. After 30 years the craft community still remembered the original craft market. The public came out in droves and avidly bought an abundance of craftworks. With such stellar sales, the grapevine spread the news. This year applications came in at a much higher rate so there will be more exhibitors and the quality of craftwork will be improved.

The show is hosted at Camelot Village, home of the Southern Vermont Garlic Festival. Camelot Village is worth a visit on its own. It is a sprawling multi-leveled barn full of antiques, collectibles, and furniture. The Festival is located on their lawns and pathways. There is a lovely food court under the shade of tall maple trees where picnic tables are available too.  A dining tent with tables and chairs provides shelter for eating lunch and listening to the live music. There is a different musical act daily: Saints and Liars on Friday, Bob Stannard and Those Dangerous Bluesmen on Saturday, and The Bondville Boys on Sunday. Comic juggler Jason Pipitone will provide the laughs with daily intermittent shows.

What’s a Festival without great food? This one will deliver delicious choices: wood over pizza, falafel, chicken wraps, vegetarian curry, steak sandwiches, Chinese dumplings, sesame noodles, Greek salad, sausage, pepper, and onion sandwiches, French fries, espresso and lattes, lemonade, ice cream, hamburgers and hot dogs, and kettle corn.

The Southern Vermont Art and Craft Festival will be held August 1, 2, and 3 at Camelot Village, 66 Colgate Heights, on route 9, a little over  a mile west of the Intersection of routes 7 and 9 in downtown Bennington. The Festival is open 10-5 on Friday and Saturday and 10-4 on Sunday. Adult admission is $8 and children are free. Rain or shine- under tents. No dogs, please. For more information, visit www.craftproducers.com/festivals/southern-vermont-art-craft-festival.





A Chance Encounter

Craftproducers’ Exhibitors travel extensively for Festivals – up and down the East Coast and westward as well. And they also travel for supplies: we ran into jewelry artisan Karen Cardoza unexpectedly at the Tucson Gem and Mineral Show! Karen was purchasing brightly colored Afghan beads and stopped for a quick picture.

Jeweler Karen Cardoza at the Tucson AZ Gem and Mineral Show

We can’t wait to see what Karen creates from her gem show purchases! Visit Karen Cardoza at several of our 2014 Art and Craft Festivals.





Craftproducers 2014 Festival Season

2014 is here and Craftproducers is gearing up for a new year of Art and Craft Festivals! Applications are coming in from Artisan Exhibitors around the country and booth spaces are filling up.

We recognize the familiar names of Exhibitors who return year after year: people we have come to know well from the weekends spent together in beautiful fields around Vermont. And we are always excited to see the new names – whether they are artisans new to the festival world in general or seasoned veterans just now joining Craftproducers – we look forward to meeting them in person at Exhibitor checkin time.

Visitors to Craftproducers Vermont Art and Craft Festivals

From the photos sent in with their applications for jurying, we know what each Exhibitor will be bringing to the shows. But we know that touring the tents and seeing the booths overflowing with handcrafted creations will, as always, be an inspiring reminder of the variety and quality of the work these Artisans offer.

We are looking forward to a wonderful 2014 Festival season – we hope to see you there!





Holiday Gift Guide: Handmade For Him

Our Syracuse Holiday Crafts Spectacular is coming up next weekend – December 6-8 – at the New York State Fairgrounds in Syracuse NY.  This show is a Holiday favorite for Customers and Exhibitors alike! Join us to find handcrafted gifts for your friends and family, holiday decor that will set you apart from the masses, and maybe a little something to pamper yourself…

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There is something for everyone at the Syracuse Holiday Crafts Spectacular. To get you started, here is a selection of wonderful gifts for the men in your life, handcrafted by Artisans who will be exhibiting at the show…

Does he already have All The Tools? How about chocolate ones? Isn’t It Sweet, a chocolate shop out of Albany NY sells a handyman set ideal for fixing up a sweet tooth. If he prefers savory treats, maybe artisan beef jerky made with top quality meats and all natural seasonings would fit the bill. Or for a gift that keeps on giving, select the Roaster’s Pick monthly coffee delivery from Simple Roast Coffee Company.

Of course, there’s a lot more than food. Find wonderful handcrafted items such as personalized golf markers, family name history plaques, fine art, unique clothing… and more.

See more of our picks and find links and info on our pinterest board:

Follow Craftproducers Handmade for Him on Pinterest





Chad Alan Heise, Heise Metal Sculpture

Chad Alan Heise of Heise Metal Sculpture is an Exhibitor new to our Syracuse Holiday Crafts Spectacular this year. Read Chad’s introduction below, and come meet him in person at the New York State Fairgrounds in Syracuse, December 6, 7, & 8. Welcome, Chad – we are so pleased you are joining us!
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Proudly carrying the proverbial “torch” for my uncle, Bill Heise (who started Heise Metal Sculpture in 1966) I strictly adhere to his principles, using only recycled and repurposed metal, the majority of which is turn-of-the-century agricultural equipment and tools collected from the fields and farms of Vermont. Employing this unusual twist on the concept of “swords into ploughshares,” I assemble the various component parts to create sculptures with graceful lines and distinct personalities.

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The delicate lines of the sculptures often defy their rugged origins, and I feel I’m paying homage to the farm equipment which faithfully turned soil for years, as well as to my uncle, who discovered the unique shapes within these components, and who taught me to discover how those shapes could be given new life.

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Artist Spotlight: Heidi Skillman, WinterScarf

In the days leading up to Craftproducers Autumn Arts Festivals, we are profiling a few of the participating Exhibitors. If you are an Exhibitor and you would like to see your information here, email amanda@craftproducers.com.

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The saying is that “necessity is the mother of invention.” And so it was for long-time business executive, Heidi Skillman, who, while solving a problem, invented the dynamic 360 Scarf and launched WinterScarf.   Skillman’s WinterScarf products exemplify her common sense approach and practical-driven past as well as her creativity.

Throughout her career, Skillman has focused on creative ways to drive strategic change, improve revenue, maximize efficiency and increase customer satisfaction. After years of serving at the top of the corporate ladder in finance, business strategy and supply chain management, Skillman gained the confidence to build her business from the ground up. In 2003, she designed her first 360 Scarf® after a cold and blustery Chicago day when she wanted to walk her dogs in single-digit temperatures. Soon after requests starting pouring in for the scarf from friends, she decided to leverage her business skills and launched WinterScarf. Skillman’s creative and strategic thinking continues to shine in her WinterScarf products as she adds her functional flair to once-mundane accessories like scarves, hats and gloves. Simply put, Skillman’s practical yet strategic approach strived to make the most out of available resources in her corporate life. And in a sense, she continues that work today with WinterScarf.

The fusion of fashion and function is the purpose of WinterScarf. When founder Heidi Skillman created her first 360 Scarf® in 2003, her simple goal was to create winter wear that would keep up with an active lifestyle.  There was a need for highly fashionable, highly functional winter accessories and it took Skillman’s vision to create the 360 Scarf® and launch WinterScarf.

Skillman patented her 360 Scarf® and soon began selling it at local markets. The demand was immediate and she soon expanded WinterScarf across the country at various craft shows, boutiques and over the Internet. Based upon customer demand, the product line has grown to include matching hats and gloves.

WinterScarf believes in using only the finest quality fabrics. All products are made with only the  warmest, softest, and most stylish fabrics for our customers. Customer satisfaction is our number one priority, and we truly believe it drives our success.  We always strive to keep our customers warm and looking absolutely fabulous!

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When people ask you what you “do”, how do you answer?
I have a patent on a unique neck warmer and hand make them along with matching hats and gloves

What mediums do you work with?
Fiber

How would you describe your subject matter?
Highly fashionable and functional at the same time.

What are you trying to communicate with your art?
Warmth and convenience

What do you want your work to accomplish?
Warmth and convenience

What are you most proud of?
The substantial amount of repeat business and customer following I have.

How long have you been exhibiting at Arts Festivals?
10 years

How many shows do you do each year?
Only in the Fall – about 13

How long have you exhibited with Craftproducers?
4 years

What aspect of Festival life do you most enjoy?
Seeing my customers and how much they really enjoy my products

Can you describe the time when you first realized that creating was something you absolutely had to do?
Age 8

Do you have a designated Studio? How does this space inspire or contribute to your creative process?
I work from my home

What is the best advice you ever received about how to be more creative?
Listen to and observe your customers

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Meet Heidi and see the WinterScarf products for yourself at the Manchester Fall Art & Craft Festival, beginning tomorrow – October 4 – and running through the weekend at the Practice Tee at Riley Rink in Manchester VT.

Find WinterScarf online at www.winterscarf.com and on facebook.

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Artist Spotlight: Jane Chenaille, Quilts by Jane

In the days leading up to Craftproducers Autumn Arts Festivals, we are profiling a few of the participating Exhibitors.
If you are an Exhibitor and you would like to see your information here, email amanda@craftproducers.com.

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Jane Chenaille is a new Exhibitor with Craftproducers Festivals. Based in Granby, MA, Jane designs and creates beautiful quilted works, including bed and wall quilts, table runners, hotpads, and napkins, and a line of aprons that are now sewn by her husband. Meet Jane at the Manchester Fall Art & Craft Festival, beginning Friday, October 4, at the Practice Tee at Riley Rink in Manchester VT.

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When people ask you what you “do”, how do you answer?
I’m a quilter

What mediums do you work with?
Mostly fabric. Hand embroidery with Redwork.

How would you describe your work?
Sewn items: Bed Quilts, Wall Quilts, Table Runners, Aprons, several sizes, and specialty items for special orders.

What are you trying to communicate with your art?
To provide my clients with quality sewn items at reasonable and fair prices.

What do you want your work to accomplish?
I need to create my own satisfaction in producing high quality items for my customers.

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What are you most proud of?
The many and varied facets of crafting through sewing, and serving my client base.

How long have you been exhibiting at Arts Festivals?
12 years

How many shows do you do each year?
As many as 20, and as few as 15, Depending on the year.

How long have you exhibited with Craftproducers?
This is my first year.

What aspect of Festival life do you most enjoy?
Meeting new crafters and people who enter my booth.

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Can you describe the time when you first realized that creating was something you absolutely had to do?
I can’t remember a time when I didn’t want to create things. From mud pies when I was a child to the quilts and sewn items I create today. Unfortunately, most of what I do today is for resale so I can only enjoy it until it finds a “new home”.

Which creative medium would you love to pursue but have not?
I’ve never learned or been taught, TATTING.

Do you have a designated Studio? How does this space inspire or contribute to your creative process?
No studio. Just craft fairs, website, and Ebay or other sales outlets.

What is the best advice you ever received about how to be more creative?
My grandmother told me, many, many years ago to be yourself, and create what you love.

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Visit Jane Chenaille’s booth at the Manchester Fall Art & Craft Festival.
You can also find her work online at www.qualitysewingbyjane.com.

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Artist Spotlight: Caryn King

In the days leading up to Craftproducers Autumn Arts Festivals, we are profiling a few of the participating Exhibitors.
If you are an Exhibitor and you would like to see your information here, email amanda@craftproducers.com.

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Caryn King will be at the Manchester Fall Art and Craft Festival with her lovely and gently humorous animal paintings. With bright colors and minimal backgrounds, these paintings are reminiscent of vintage graphics, while also being detailed realistic portraits. The artist clearly loves animals, and you will love her work! Here is Caryn…
I paint mostly animals. I find it hard to resist starting a new painting every time I see a great looking cow, sheep pig, cat etc. Many of the chickens I paint live by my studio door so getting good reference of chickens is easy!

My paintings are contemporary folk art, realistically painted animals with personality. I am concerned with finding emotion and individuality in my paintings and feel I have a mission to share the wonder and love I feel for animals.

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I first did Craftproducers fairs over thirty years ago although at the time I was working in clay and my business was called Claydreams. Through the years since I studied and received a BFA at  Massachusetts College of Art, worked as an illustrator, moved to Vermont and taught art in Southern Vermont schools. For the last 8 years I have concentrated on painting. My studio is in South Newfane where I welcome visitors and students.