The 2nd year for the Bow Craft Fair adding Sunday is not the huge crowds of the Saturday that has grown for 39 years, but still had many shoppers browsing for great gifts. My hearts sell the best here, last year and this year again, and I began the holiday with my largest and most varied group ever!
My Saturday post was focused on getting it out in a timely fashion to maybe get a few extra shoppers in for Sunday. So, I didn’t take the time to post my customers for Saturday and this post will include both days.
Donna and Jennifer were my first customers and such a delight and good sports to take some photos. As usual, the Dot Hearts are a popular hit and make really great stocking stuffers.
Now, everyone does not want their picture taken which is perfectly fine, but they say I can still tell their story. The Osage Orange heart with Abalam mosaic heart inlay shown above was purchased by a mother whose daughter bought her a heart from me last year. So she is reciprocating.
She also said her father went to the auction of the old NH Highway Hotel items and she has a windowframe from there that she made into a photodisplay and the heart is hanging on the old hook. How sweet and I just love stories like this!
Another sweet story came from Linda as she purchased this crazy, elongated Redheart heart. She spends time and travels with her aunt whose husband, I think, was a woodworker and she said how her aunt would appreciate the knot that makes the grain have wild designs (I always try to include knots and other imperfections).
Being camera-shy does not mean a dislike for the items as the 3 hearts above bought by my customer who preferred not to be photographed shows. She was so supportive and excited for my craft, I appreciated that.
Then there is the opposite of that. Bill was ok with me taking his picture, but not to show the item……….shhhhh…………it’s a secret!
Jaylee bought one of the smallest dot inlay hearts in Black and White Ebony and Pearl dot inlay. That Black and White Ebony is stunning!
Sarah purchased this lush and plush Cheetah drawstring bag with the softest gold satin lining. The thick outside fabric holds firmly while the lining is so smooth and delicate.
Aviva (what a beautiful name) purchased this smaller Rosewood heart and in the picture below it shows the beautiful grain and the small hint of a rosy color inbetween the darker.
I try to have a display photo of some different designs at shows because some designs go so fast, but I can always make another and get it to the buyer in just over a week (or it can be picked up at one of my shows). These 2 hearts below I will be making for just that reason. On my website are many different types and just send a message to start the process.
On Sunday my first customer was Kim, she purchased a dot inlay heart and she let me take her beautiful picture. The Redheart she chose has the rich colored grain that is shown below on a similar heart.
Sarah and Marybeth also purchased a Redheart dot inlay heart. Even the same type of wood can be a little different from piece to piece, but the 2 Redhearts they chose were a very deep and rich red.
The Vendors, especially working alone, are so appreciative of any help or attention they can get. Luca and Eli, students at the school and friends of my nephew Finnian, walked around all throughout the show with a cart of coffee and donuts for vendors to purchase early and then drinks and food later on. My picture was blurry that I took of them so I didn’t post it, but wanted to send them thanks regardless…………THANKS LUCA AND ELI!!!
I saw a few vendors on Sunday that I wanted to include and Sullivan’s Handweaving is DEFINITELY one of them. Such beautiful items! The art is wonderful in itself, but the beauty of the colors, combinations and feel is over the top. For more information:
603-352-7806 or email@example.com
Lisa from The Ornament Smith, has what I think is always a great addition to a holiday fair…..personalized ornaments! I’ve received some in my life and they are so cute and so specific with your name, it’s a great gift to get. A facebook page will be coming shortly if you would like more information in the future.
Last, but certainly not least, are these lifelike bird carvings. There is such great detail and beautiful colors they are hard to resist…..and don’t! For more information on Henry and Sue Boudreau’s craft visit https://www.woodcarvedbirds.com/
Lastly, I would just like to reiterate my credo of……….take some time to look at the beauty and interest of the small things. Things don’t have to be big and in your face to be enjoyed and appreciated. So many people walk by my booth and don’t see my purpose. But look at the detail in nature………it’s incredible.
And also…………………D E C O R A T E !!
Here are the contacts for more information for the vendors I posted on Saturday: https://fineartamerica.com/artists/gisele+thompson email firstname.lastname@example.org - https://www.facebook.com/wildpoppysoapco/ email email@example.com - rjm woodworks phone 603-455-3715 email firstname.lastname@example.org - https://willowvalewoodturning.weebly.com/store/c1/Featured_Products.html phone 603-362-6468 email@example.com - firstname.lastname@example.org - mothernaturedesigns Laurie LTA3333@hotmail.ocm - maggies phone 603-542-2840 - gourdeaouscreations Lynn phone 603-672-8551 - wildmountaintiedyes and whitemountainsbotanicals Sarah phone603-254-4188 email email@example.com
The long-standing, incredibly popular 39th Annual Bow Craft Fair began Saturday with huge crowds looking to purchase some wonderful handmade/handcrafted items. I am doing my blog differently this 1st day of the event. Usually I include all my customers, stories about the purchases and other vendors at the show with contact information and/or links. It takes me 5 hours or more to complete, but because I want to show possible attendees what diverse and great items are available, I am doing this quickly (sort-of quickly, about 3 hours of time) to post this before Sunday’s hours. There is MUCH more than the vendors that I am showing here and the Sunday hours of 9:00-1:00pm will allow more attendees to find that out. I will list on my Sunday blog ALL my customers and the vendors contact information and/or links.
There are booths everywhere in the hallways, the gyms and the cafeteria.
Students have booths for raffles and support for their causes.
There are raffle tables with items donated by the many vendors and I think I saw 50/50 raffles also.
The smaller gym was full of vendors and I saw a familiar booth of Paintings by Gisele and these are her beautiful paintings, many of which are of local spots. She has all kinds of sizes.
Paintings by Gisele
The large gym that I am located in was full of vendors and attendees as you can see by the photos.
I have my beautiful 3 heart hanging pieces high over the crowd. The striped wood is Zebrawood and the other is my new rich, intense Redheart.
Below are just a small section of the vendors, but the photos give a nice look at some beautiful, handmade items and as I stated above, I will include their contact information on Sunday’s blog, so for today everyone better get to the show!
Mother Nature Designs by Laurie Anderson (beautiful gourds)
Maggie’s handmade items
Wild Poppy Soap Co./Julie Bursey
Wicked Accents/Tammy Perry
Wild Mountain Tie-Dyes and White Mountains Botanical/Sarah Wall
Gourd-eous Creations/Lynn Desmarais
Willow Vale Woodturning/Al Lanseigue
The 2nd Annual TRHS Craft and Vendor Fair began with pouring rain…..then clearing…..then BLUSTERY! (as the leaves are dancing in the school photo above) and we were all blown around as we loaded up, but it was a fun success none-the-less.
The gym was sparkling with the activity from all the great vendors preparing their spaces for the anticipated attendees looking to find something special. Even with the unsettling weather the attendance was good.
There was a raffle table that ran the entire length of the gym with all sorts of donated items from the vendors.
My first customer of the day was Sue and she purchased this darling little rosewood heart with a solid Golden Mother-of-Pearl heart inlay. It’s actually harder to make a small heart with inlay being careful of your scroll saw and the Dremel tool routing. It’s tricky.
Pam chose one of the ever popular dot inlay hearts. I had the most varied wood types ever for this show. The dot inlay hearts show all the quality and beauty of the larger more intricate ones. Pam chose the Bocote with Pearl dot inlay. Pam was a vendor with a large space of her own with Don. They call their business Coastal Creations. There are a few pictures of their creations below and to get in contact with them for further information the phone number is 860-949-3658 and email is firstname.lastname@example.org.
And then there was Gail! She was so wonderful and supportive, brought back friends a couple of times, and all purchased some of my favorite hearts.
These incredibly charming paintings were a must see! Joshua was painting behind the table, but didn’t want to be in the photos. So, his chair is empty, but you can see the painting in progress on his easel. And as talented artists sometimes go….he had no contact information. He did tell me “Pepere’s” was of course his grandfather. I always encourage people to take time in life to look at the small things and their detail and beauty, and these are proof of that.
Next to Pepere’s was the display of Children’s Books by Karly Rose. She is the author and her books support the NHSPCA. For more information: SEE amazon.com : Furry Tail Matters and email@example.com .
The Timberlane Woodworking Class had a table of cutting boards made by the students. It looks like it must be a great class. Their use of Purpleheart and other beautiful woods and also the inclusion of imperfections which make crazy grain happenings, are what I love!
Jane Lydick Staid is a portrait artist. She creates these beautiful finished pictures from the photographs she takes in her studio sessions. Her newest line is the limited edition series “Fine Art Fairies.” For more information: janelydickstaidphotography.com or 603-382-6775.
With winter impending, there were a few tables with winter accessories. My vendor neighbor, Penney, had these gems which are so soft to the touch they would feel warm and comforting on a cold day. For more information: home 978-373-4258 or cell 978-372-2566; and Penney29@verizon.net
Meaghan (and I’m sure her team) completed once again the great feat of putting on an event like this. I’m also sure that it will grow and grow every year because it’s a fun-filled time!
Tricia was my last, but certainly NOT least customer of the day and she purchased 4 dot inlay hearts! She was also a vendor at the show (Independent Sales Director for Mary Kay) and she bubbles over with enthusiasm. For more information: https://www.marykay.com/triciaedris ; phone 781-248-0431 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
I gave away quite a few of my Giveaway Hearts. I’ve made different designs and this one is my latest. I love having them to give to special people or for a special reason or really as just a nice gesture (and good advertising).
Lastly, packing up is not the best part of this experience, but it’s made a little better when Mad Batter Confections comes by giving away cupcakes that were left over for the day. Thanks so much to them and thanks to Meaghan and TRHS for inviting me to this great show. Please check out the vendors and their sites to support their businesses and like the pages.
Mad Batter Confections facebook site: https://www.facebook.com/maddbatterconfections
Art Jam Riverside 2018 came off with bright colors, balloons, artists, vendors, and activities of all kinds. The Art Jam Bridgefest of last year was the best selling day I have ever had, so this years event had a lot to live up to. Unfortunately it did not come anywhere near that for me, but I enjoy all events regardless of sales. My booth was at the very end of the event and a bit sparse of other artists or vendors, but the second stage was there which brought visitors down.
The focus at the Art Jam is on my hearts and that process. I bring finished hearts, but also planks of woods, traced-on heart shapes, raw cut hearts, pearl pieces with my hand saw and my Dremel router to enhance the explaining.
Check out my previous blog (Gearing up/Art Jam 2018) to see the complete process of making my hearts.
I do still bring my bags to sell and always sell a few (or more than a few) at all the shows.
My first customer was Mariah and she purchased one of my favorite bags. It was an item that stayed around for a while and I wondered why because it's so cute, but someone always see the beauty in it and will scoff it up eventually.
Mariah, Nathaniel, and John were so nice to let me take this picture.....love group shots!
This bag has a black, glossy, beadwork embellishment with 2 different fabrics on the outside and one on the inside.
Madelyn bought a wristlet that I made as a glasscase line for the Made In NH Expo 2017. It wasn’t a wristlet at first, but I had changed it to one, which I could do for any small bag. The designer fabric is so elegant and smooth, it’s just lovely.
The photo above is one side of the bags and the photo below, the other.
Claudia bought a $5 Cocobolo heart with Abalone dot inlay . These small hearts are my best sellers. An inexpensive and miniature way to enjoy the beauty of the woods. Everything I love and try to showcase in my larger hearts, I do with these mini ones. The only thing that is different is that I don’t do quite as many coats of poly for the dot inlay hearts as I do for the more intricately inlaid pearl designs. These dot inlay hearts can range from 1.25” to 2” (approximately).
Check out the beauty of the poly-ed wood and the striking difference from the sapwood and the heartwood, and how you can see the severe angle of the two on the side of the heart. I sometimes have the hearts be pretty thick to showcase what the grain does on the sides, these Cocobolo’s were thin planks purchased from a scrap box of wood pieces.
The 3rd act on this stage was the energetic Charlie Farren. Charlie was a memeber of the bands The Joe Perry Project and Farrenheit. Perhaps that’s why he had the largest crowd. Click on his facebook link here:
The 2nd performing act was the duo called Mystical Magic Music. I somehow missed taking their picture, but they have this great card with their pictures on it. They played many very familiar tunes in their mix as well as originals. Click on their link:
There were many other activities as well as artists and vendors. I don’t always have multiple times an event to check out everything, but above are the drum players and I think they played many different combinations of performers throughout the day (I couldn’t find their name). The above table area had many things to involve visitors in including the basket weaving seen here. Below was a huge chalkboard sort-of cube that anyone could write their message on in the subject matter written at the top….love, before I die….and once again bright and colorful.
Here are some shots of the artists and vendors and the stage by the front entrance.
My heart giveaway for this show didn’t get finished in time, so I brought my holiday decorated gourds to giveaway. Nate, Rhys and Alex bought a “Noel” heart made from Zebrawood. The word was done freehand with the Dremel tool and I gave them a gourd to go with it.
real, miniature gourds decorated for the holidays
Chrissy also bought a Cocobolo Abalone dot inlay heart. She was also a vendor at this event and her card was so beautiful I wanted to show it. You can see all her contact information on it to reach out to her.
Here are some of the artists that I got a chance to visit to take photos of their art and give them some attention:
This incredible art is by “Bill”, no sites or card to give me to promote him which really personifies the creative and sometimes non-commercial mindset of the artist.
When I walked up to Emily Thorpe’s booth I recognized her as being an artist at the Bridgefest last year with her friend artist Sami. Emily’s card says “Scientific & Creative Illustrator” and it is easily seen here in her technically correct and striking depictions.
Kara LaMarche, below, was one of the few artists in my area. I hope enough visitors got to see her wonderful paintings. Here is a link to her website:
Artist Kathy Sullivan, below, does amazingly accurate portraits. Obviously those below are of famous individuals, which seems to me to be difficult whereas everyone knows their faces. I had to include the back of her business cards because it is so beautiful (her own drawing I would say?) and it is my favorite animal. Here are her links:
Funloving Riley bought my beautiful, signature design Purpleheart heart with Golden Mother-of-Pearl split heart inlay. Riley and her “friend”, Bob, made us laugh and were a lot of fun.
Moira and Brian chose one of the dot inlay hearts made out of Rosewood. The piece of Rosewood shown below is what their heart was cut from, such beautiful wood grain.
Scott Plante was the 4th act on the rear stage. I saw him perform at MacGregor Park in Derry in August this year (pictured below). I played keyboards in the other band that night with an incredible choral group that was put together for Hope for Recovery. He plays for donations to certain causes including the opiod epidemic, but here is his link for more info:
Andy Kiniry appeared as the final act and was so good-natured considering the long feedback that appeared out of nowhere and the absence of an audience. The booths around him were the audience giving him the applause he deserves as he does a superb job. I first saw Andy perform when I was a vendor at the 2017 Veteran’s Park free Thursday night concert series. Here’s his link:
What better way to end this blog with my last customer, Steve. We were almost all packed up and Steve rode up on his beautiful bike looking to buy something from the show. My sister, Kathy, went into the heart box and he chose an Osage Orange dot heart. He was just a delightful guy. Thank you Steve!
Please send a comment if you want to reach out to me, but also click on the sites of the artists to find out more about them and like and share with friends. See you next time and thanks for reading!
Gearing up for the Art Jam 2018 this Saturday 10:00-3:00 at Riverfront Park. Since my knee surgery on January 29th, I have been recovering well and right on schedule, but my work was put on hold which makes me so anxious for this event! At the end of my holiday season 2017, someone asked me if I paint my heart decorations on and I realized that I need to explain my process in a little detail for customers to get the whole effect I am trying to accomplish. I LOVE WOOD! and I choose beautiful, hardwoods (some exotic) to highlight the different grains and natural colors. I put an inlay of (I'm discovering) almost anything to embellish the wood on one side and the other side I usually leave plain to highlight the wood.
I also may keep imperfections in the woods to add interest. I love the way the grains swirl around a knot. The 2 long, funky hearts on the left are the only 2 I will have like that this show. The 2 hearts on the right emulate the beauty and the differences in grains.
I begin by drawing the hearts on the different wood pieces. The thickness of each heart depends on what I have for pieces/strips and from the resawn blocks, but I do keep many fairly thick because the side can show the grain well and how it's directed from front to back.
Next, I cut out the hearts on my scroll saw.
After cutting the hearts out, I sand them to almost a final sanding stage, but not the "fine" sanding stage before polying. I never stain or paint the woods, I just apply many coats of polyurethane to bring out the natural color and beauty of each type of wood.
I then figure out what to inlay and draw the idea out on the Mother-of-Pearl (or sometimes I use another interesting wood) and hand-cut the pearl with a pearl cutting saw.
After cutting the pearl or wood pieces, I scribe them onto the heart and then rout out the cavity to accept the pearl.
The final "fine" sanding and many coats of polyurethane finish the process, with a hole for the leather string. All in all there is a huge amount of handwork that goes into these hearts to produce a smooth, cool, shimmering end result that makes these keepsakes.
The smaller raw hearts in this picture will be inlayed with an Abalone dot. I have a mix of wood types: Redheart, Cocobolo, Yellowwood, Mahogany, Bocote, Osage Orange, Spalted Tamarind, Myrtle. They are only $5 and I use this as a lure into my world of wood hearts. Of course, it's first come, first serve and I only have a few of each type. I'll also have some thin giveaway hearts, also in a limited supply.
Holiday season 2017 is in the books and as successful for DiZigns as it was for evergreen arrangements and hearts, the bag sales were minimal. They are now listed in my Etsy Shop as well as a few hearts (there was not many left) and some artwork.
The bags are not necessarily Christmas themed so they were not the common purchase. There's a mixture of types left from the lines I produced through the year.
I made some summery types of bags; I always try to have tapestry bags; there are small collection bags; and even glass case bags.
These 2 small collection bags are variations of similar interior design embroidered fabrics. Both sides of the bags are shown here and the effect is striking when they are combined in one bag.
I also had a few left with the wild animal theme: leopard, tiger/zebra, cheetah.
The few hearts that are left are these dot inlay hearts and this Osage Orange heart beside a few Christmas themed ones.
If you like to check out my items to find out more about them, please click on the link:
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