Tuesday, March 3, 2020

See-ya in Cincinnati!

Meet Wendy Ellen of WendyEllen's, LLC...  
Hi my name is Wendy Creech and I started WendyEllen’s, LLC in 2018.  We are a small home-based business that creates one of a kind denim and canvas purses, totes, duffel bags, and accessories.  
It is our objective to create only high quality, durable products with great attention to detail. When not working as a dental hygienist, I have always dabbled in crafting, but this has become more than just a hobby to me.  It has become my passion and how I spend every spare moment that I have.  

This will be the first Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show that I will be participating in.  I’ve had the opportunity to participate in a few other craft shows and look forward to many more. I truly appreciate the feedback I get from customers regarding my creations.  I listen to suggestions with an open mind and have customized many orders to fit a particular person’s wants or needs.  
Discovering my passion was an evolution from the first stitch.  The very first tote I made as a gift, which wasn’t very good, sparked something inside me that I knew I had to pursue.   I love creating something that is not only unique, but of very high quality. I have practiced endless hours and learned so much and all of this is poured into each and every creation that comes out of my sewing room.  I can spend hours in a fabric store getting a tactile feel for the materials and seeing the end product in my head.  

In 5 years, with a more sizable work space, and I’d love to have WendyEllen’s, LLC available in select boutiques.  I know that as long as I am capable of continuing to create, I will do so with the same feeling of accomplishment that I feel today.

Meet Susan of Silver Serpent Chainmaille...
Hi! My Name is Susan and I hand-weave individual metal ring links to make jewelry and other cool stuff. I found this art in 2008 and I fell in love with it. I have been weaving rings ever since. It has grown to be one of my great passions and it is also an expression of myself and my creativity.
Just about anything and everything inspires me for my creations. Sometimes its a conversation with a friend, or seeing something in nature or sometimes I am working on a project and another project or idea will blossom from what I am currently working on. Then I have to jot down notes and return to the idea once the current project is finished.
What got me interested in chainmaille? Well it was actually an internet search on google images. I was looking for something specific and chainmaille items kept coming up instead of what I was looking for. After awhile I started to really look at it and just fell in love with it. I knew then that this was something I was going to try doing myself. It can be frustrating at times but in the end it is very enjoyable and relaxing to me.

Meet Monica Simpson of Mon's Trons Gifts...
Hello! I am a 24 year old wife and mother of two. I am a self-published children's book author, and I really enjoy writing, making crochet blankets and scarves and making tie blankets.
I discovered my talent for writing after years and years of reading books and thinking up stories of my own, but never putting words on paper. After finally sitting down and trying my hand at writing, I turned out to really like it. Now, my two kids inspire me daily. Before I had them, I was writing adult fiction, but once they were born, I decided to switch to children's books, and it was a great decision for me. 
My grandma taught me to crochet when I was in junior high and since then I have continued to try new patterns and stitches. I now teach my grandma the new stitches that I learn. Blanket making is something I have always enjoyed. It started by making them for myself and other people. One day it just made sense to start selling my creations to others.  
My creative process is quite simple really. For my blankets and scarves, I first choose the colors that I will be using and then I decide what type of pattern I will be using. Making different color patterns is the most fun part for me. My creative process for my writing is a little trickier. I first have to decide what I want to write about and then I make an outline or rough draft of my work. I then critique it multiple times until it is exactly the way I want it to be. 
The message behind my work is that you can do anything you put your mind to, and that hard work really does pay off if you want something bad enough. 

Meet Kelsea Hudgins of Milk Suds...
We are Milk Suds and we make homemade soaps, lotions, bath fizzies, castile soap, and lip balms. We are a mother/daughter team that have been working together for over 13 years. We work together to create not only the products but the labels and everything else that goes into our craft. As far as backgrounds go, Renee/mom has an art degree from Miami University and Kelsea/daughter went to Mount St. Joseph and got a bachelor’s in biology and a doctorate in physical therapy. We both live in Guilford, Indiana where we make all of our products.
We started making soap out of curiosity – a lot of trial and error was involved.  There are so many creative options for soap making. You can change the oils used, liquids such as water or simply any other liquid, fragrance, pouring techniques, and color scheme can all be altered as you want. It is endless when it comes to options and you rarely can make every batch exactly the same.What inspires us to create?  I would say the ingredients inspire us the most. We get an idea about what ingredients we want to use, and we plan the soap around the ingredients we choose. All of our ingredients are unique. For example, we have an apple cider soap we make with locally sourced apple cider. The fragrance, color, and design are all inspired from the use of the apple cider.
What inspires us to create?  I would say the ingredients inspire us the most. We get an idea about what ingredients we want to use, and we plan the soap around the ingredients we choose. All of our ingredients are unique. For example, we have an apple cider soap we make with locally sourced apple cider. The fragrance, color, and design are all inspired from the use of the apple cider.
It is important to take care of your skin and homemade soap truly is more beneficial than store-bought “soap”. Store-bought “soap” that is commercially made is actually nothing more than detergent. They are filled with artificial, unrecognizable ingredients, and made in large factories. Our soaps use natural, organic ingredients. A natural soap is usually formed by combining animal or plant-based oils and butters that are rich in nutrients, vitamins, and antioxidants. The skin loves and needs these ingredients to stay healthy. What you see on the ingredient list is what you get with homemade soap. It is more about the quality, than the quantity with homemade soaps.
In five years, we just want to still be having fun and enjoying the soap making process. It is a hobby and we enjoy making the soaps. We hope that others come to appreciate and enjoy our products as well.

This will be our first time participating in an Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show and we are looking forward to a wonderful show! Find us on Facebook@MilkSuds or e-mail us at milk.suds@yahoo.com

2020 Cincinnati Spring Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show
Sunday, March 15th, 2020 - 10:00am-4:00pm
Oasis Golf Club & Conference Center
902 Loveland-Miamiville Rd.
Loveland, OH 45140
For more information, contact Amanda Look, Event Coordinator at Amanda@ag-shows.com
Visit us on:

Wednesday, December 11, 2019

We're Coming This Weekend, Cincinnati

Meet Madison DeAtley...
My name is Madison DeAtley and I am a 22 year old artist based out of Loveland, Ohio. My artistic focus is primarily on creating realistic oil paintings and illustrations through the use of contrast, color, and detail. Ever since I was little kid I’ve had a desire to create, and with time and dedication my passion for the arts has only grown stronger. A lot of my inspiration comes from animals, nature, books and movies.
I started taking art commissions in High School, and as my knowledge of using paints and pencils grew, so did my business. I do a lot of small scale paintings of people, landscapes, pet portraits, and comic book characters. I’ve also had the pleasure of creating large scale paintings and murals for schools, dentist offices, and in private homes. I owe a great deal of my success and confidence in the art-world to my family. My mom and dad have always been encouraging of my passion to pursue art.
This is the first Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show I will have participated in. I just recently learned that it is hosted at the Oasis Conference Center, which is right down the street from my house. I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to display my art amongst such a vibrant community of artists and creators.

One of my favorite experiences that I am a part of and look forward to every year is having an exhibitor booth at the annual Cincinnati Comic Expo at the Duke Energy Convention Center. To be able to display my work on such a large scale beside my former teachers from the Art Academy of Cincinnati is surreal. Large events like this inspire me to create a piece of artwork at least once a day.

I strongly believe that if you are passionate about what you create, and take the time to learn from your mistakes, you will not only become a better artist, but a better person. The message behind my work is to have the viewer experience an emotional pull to my work; something that resonates with the viewer on a personal level. My goal is to create paintings that portray a vibrant, representative outlook on the subject that I am rendering.

In five years from now, I’m not sure what life will have in store, but I do know that I will continue to make art not only to bring happiness to others, but to bring joy to myself.

Meet Annie Oaks...
Welcome to the world of Bird, The Cat With the Question Mark Tail.  

Bird is a large, black, and curious cat.  She questions everything in her world and when she does, her tail forms a perfect question mark.  
Many years ago two cats, one black and the other black and white, arrived on my doorstep.  After eating many cans of food, receiving a lot of petting, then eating many more cans of food, they were persuaded to stay.  Rocky and Ave Maria had a new home with Dan and Annie Oaks.  
“No, no!” my husband said.  “You can’t name a cat Ave Maria.  You can’t name ANYTHING Ave Maria.  Her name is Bird.” And so it was.
Bird had bushy chin guards and a very long tail and more curiosity than the average cat.  Although, no cat is really average.  I would watch her question mark tail and think, “Someday I should write a story about her.”  That someday came after I retired from Batavia Schools and started attending classes at Women Writing for (a) Change.  I shared my Bird story with other writers who encouraged me to publish it. Through Orange Frazer Press in Wilmington I found an illustrator and, a little more than a year later, the book was born.
There have been many more short stories and children’s stories written since then, inspired by animals, people, nature, and even bugs.  Everything has a story.  I was inspired by a sign at the tire store.  “Can’t we all just get aligned?”  for a story titled “Getting Along”.  Or how about license plates that read TTHDR (tooth doctor) or CNT W8 4U?  Or a frog who gets trapped in a window well? Or maybe a shelf fungus on a tree, providing the inspiration for a story about butterflies who use it for an insect restaurant called the “Fun Guy CafĂ©”?

All of my stories carry the message that life is good and we must enjoy every minute of every hour of every day.  Children (and adults as well) need that message and need the optimistic state of mind that it carries.

This is my first published book and my second Avant- Garde Craft Show, I’ve attended many shows and thoroughly enjoy all that other people have to offer.  I’m hoping that more of my work will be published in the future for children and other people to enjoy.  After all, we’re all children at heart.  

Meet Rhondeesia Hester of LittleGuysandbowties...
I currently live in Cincinnati Ohio. I'm married and blessed to have one son. I love spending time with family and using my creative talents. I began hand-crafting bowties, headbands, and barrettes in 2015 and I really enjoy it. My son and other family members love to wear bowties and I love to see babies and children dress up in their little outfits. I have an eye for uniquely beautiful things and I try to capture those images through my crafts.
This will make LittleGuysandbowties third year participating in Avant-Garde event. Hopefully the business will continue to grow, and I will begin to work with a manufacturer to produce larger quantities of my products. You'll find a bowtie or headband that will best suit your need and make you feel special every time you wear it. When putting on one of our custom designed items we hope you feel the love and care in each and every one! You're always welcome to visit our selection of custom handmade bowties, headbands and barrettes.

Meet Rebecca Irwin of Mindful Moments...

I am mom of two and a social worker by day, by evening, I make jewelry and dabble in various fiber arts such as sewing and knitting. I have been making jewelry for more than 20 years, and selling my work for around four years. I am always looking for fun new ways to create art, and my latest love is needle felting. I developed a love of ethnic jewelry while working in unique boutique jewelry stores in downtown Cincinnati and then traveled the world while serving in the military, exploring my love of textiles, fiber arts and expanding the use of semi-precious stones in my jewelry work. I am committed to finding fun through creativity and celebrating all forms of artistry in other artists and myself. I am inspired by color and textures and creating new combinations using vintage beads as much as I can find them. When I create new work with beads or with fabrics I play with the colors, pick them up, see how they make me feel and then build that feeling while layering new colors and textures. I look forward to expanding the number of shows I do slowly over the next few years, focusing on opportunities to introduce my work to the right community. I teach mindfulness meditation and recently facilitated my second artist’s way cluster, which has truly helped me to explore other modes of art and see the beauty in the process. This will be my first Avant-Garde show and I am so excited to experience the show and meet new artists. 

2019 Cincinnati Winter Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show
Sunday, December 15, 2019 - 10:00am-4:00pm
Oasis Golf Club & Conference Center
902 Loveland-Miamiville Rd.
Loveland, OH 45140
For more information, contact Amanda Look, Event Coordinator at Amanda@ag-shows.com
Visit us on:

Thursday, June 20, 2019

Don't Miss Out!!

Meet Shelly Bauer of Purple Birch Shop...
My name is Shelly, and I've always had a love for art, crafts, and making things ever since I was little.  I'm a mother of two amazing boys and we have two rescue dogs.  My husband, Andrew, also has a talent for making things.  He does all the woodworking for our items, from cutting/building, sanding, staining, and sealing. He is also very hands-on with many of the items we create.   
We began selling our items in December 2018, but we have been creating items for personal use as long as I can remember. This is my first Avant-Garde show! I'm always inspired by my boys, and things they are interested in.  I also enjoy window shopping and exploring Pinterest/Facebook groups for new ideas and trends to put my own spin on.
Our craft business really began with baby shoes.  I discovered a pattern for them around Christmas a few years ago.  I had purchased coordinating pajamas for our family, and I thought it would be fun to add matching slippers as well.  Ever since the first pair, I have been obsessed with these adorable little booties.  My oldest son learned to walk in the soft-soled shoes, and my youngest has been wearing them since birth.  As for our wood items, my husband has always been extremely creative and talented when it comes to woodworking.  We decided to combine our two talents, and create a variety of handcrafted and hand painted wood signs, planter hangers, cutting boards, etc.  It is always fun giving him a new challenge of something I would like for him to create. I have always enjoyed crafting.  I love the idea of taking some sort of raw material, whether it be fabric, wood, or paint, and turn it into something.  I would typically gift some sort of handmade items for holidays, birthdays, showers. new babies, etc., and it was always very well received.   Friends and family have been extremely supportive and encouraging us to sell items.  After hearing "you should sell this" or being asked "do you have a shop?" a few times, I realized there might be a market for what we create. 
I LOVE fabric shopping and usually can't wait to sew up something new when I purchase new material.  If I'm ever feeling uninspired, a quick trip to the store usually takes care of that!  I'm also inspired by practical things I would like in my own home, or by ideas presented by customers, friends and family.  Sometimes I have a vision of the end product in mind, and other times I don't really know exactly what an item will look like until it's complete.  I also love creating custom and one of a kind personalized items.  In the next five years I would love to expand our business to have a bigger online presence through the creation of a website as well as begin carrying items in local boutiques. 
We are proud of the items we create and we believe quality is what sets us apart.  We pay close attention to detail and believe it shows in the items we create.  Each item is handcrafted and/or hand painted, you can see and feel the quality of our items in person. 

Meet Michele Meyers of Buddha Bottle Co...
My name is Michele Meyers.  I am a Mom, HR Professional, and Artist with a passion for creating art from materials not normally combined, such as a rusty ¾ inch hex bolt and a baby blue single ply wool and acrylic blend.   My only addiction in life is soda. I found myself keeping the empty soda bottles after indulging. I was not completely sure why I was keeping them, probably because in the back of my mind I thought maybe in 50 years an old Coke bottle would be worth enough for me to retire on.  My daughter hit the teenage years and slowly started needing me less and less, disappearing to her room more and more. So combine all of those things – my love of creating, soda addiction, and a lot more free time – and you get Buddha Bottle Co.
The message behind my work is a message that I am very passionate about – there is no “normal”.   As babies, the world is a blank slate. Our reality is shaped by our parents, society, religion, school, etc.  Society leads us to believe we have to look a certain way or achieve specific goals in order to be “normal” and accepted.  I have learned that this is a false notion. We need to celebrate our individuality, embrace our differences, and do crazy things like decorate soda bottles with bolts and flowers.
In 5 years, I hope my business continues to provide me with joy.  My creative process involves several steps, all of which I perform in my makeshift “studio” aka my garage and living room.  I do all of the painting in my garage and all of the embellishing in my living room. Creating at home allows me to be present for my teenage daughter and two dogs, Sky and Riley.  It really is the best of both worlds.
Meet Kelly Stone of K. Stone Creations...
My name is Kelly and I recently started K.Stone Creations.  I am a happy to call myself a newcomer to the world of Artisans: specifically the art of beading and jewelry making.  For years my background had been in healthcare. I loved being in a profession where I could offer my heart and talents in a way that would bring hope and healing to others. I was fortunate to have a 15 year career in direct patient care as well as managing a large team of gifted professionals. My course took an abrupt turn when at the age of 36, I suffered a stroke.  The pathway of professional turned patient has been both challenging and extremely humbling. Rehabilitation is not easy and it has taken a lot of work to find myself amidst the changes that occurred. I feel very fortunate that in addition to my beautiful partner, two amazing children, Merrell the aussiedoodle, and loving family, the places I continually find joy are in the arts and nature. I've been focused on the art of jewelry making for the last year. This will be my first Avant-Garde Show!
I have and always will be someone who loves using my time and talents for others. To be able to make something one of a kind for someone that will create a lasting memory for them is such a rewarding feeling.  I work hard to put that uniqueness and care into the pieces I create. I have a beautiful neighbor, named Roberta, who is in her 80s and recently widowed. She is an extremely gifted artist who has spent many years of her life devoted to her crafts.  Roberta knew of my stroke and my struggles. She has become a great supporter in my life, taking me under her wing, and mentoring me the art of beading and jewelry making.
I found myself feeling inspired by Roberta's teachings and the more I made and shared with family and friends, the more I wanted to create.  It has been with great persistence (and many mistakes) that I discovered this was something I really enjoyed.
I don't know how many can relate, but once I am "All In", my mind races with ideas and at all hours of the day and night! Many a-nights I have dreamt about beading and woke having to get my thoughts down before I could fall back to sleep! I take pictures, make drawings, jot down notes in my phone and then spend time going back and reviewing before I start a project. When it comes to crafting a piece, I spend a great deal of time planning before diving in.  My Type A definitely likes to try to dominate creative process!
In five years, I hope to still be creating. To still be learning. To be reaching as many people as I can.  I have only just started an instagram page but hope in five years to tap into an online market. In addition, I hope to be more intimately networked.  Both in my career in healthcare as well as this opportunity as an Artisan, I think there is so much to gain from networking with other gifted and talented artists!  
The message behind my work is this; Without a doubt, be your authentic self: find your passion and live it!

Meet Elizabeth Barron of Elizabeth Barron, LLC...
Prior to shifting her photography hobby into a career, I spent 20 years in the
technology industry. But, for as long as I can remember, being in nature is
always where I felt most at home. When I’m not working and spending time
with family, I spend most of my time with my camera in the abundant parks and
nature preserves in the greater Cincinnati area. I have a deep appreciation and
love for all plants, flowers, insects, and animals, and enjoys telling their stories
through photography. I post a unique nature photo a day on my Instagram
(@elizabethnphoto) and Facebook (@elizabethbarronphotography) accounts.
I am a member of the Professional Photographers of America, and working to
complete my OCVN Ohio Naturalist certification.
I have been a photographer for many years, but have only made it my full time
profession this year. This is my first Avant-Garde show! I love finding things in
nature that other people might miss, or walk past. I feel that every single plant,
insect, flower, tree, and animal has a unique story to tell, even the ones that we
consider commonplace. Nature’s miracles are everywhere! I have loved creative
hobbies since I was a little kid. I blame my mother and grandmother; we spent
hours and hours doing arts and crafts. :)
I don’t know if I have a “talent” or if I just practice a lot. When you’re doing
something you love, you will naturally get better at it with time, because you
love it! I’ve taken over 50,000 nature photos in my life, and I still have a lot to
improve. I simply take every chance I can to get out in nature and see what I
can discover. I try and find new angles and perspectives that people may not
have noticed before. During my photo post processing, I sometimes tweak the
settings to give photos a unique look, while still honoring the beauty of the
Honestly, in five years, I hope to just be making enough money to keep me
going. I am not in this to make millions or grow an empire, I simply want to be
able to continue to be in the woods with my camera. :)
The mission of my business is to foster our kinship with nature. In everything I
do, whether it be commissioned work, or floral product photography or fine art
prints, I want that to be the end goal. I chose the word kinship because it
represents more than just a “connection.” The word “kinship” also encompasses
respect, appreciation, oneness, unity, acknowledgment, compassion, and love
for the world in which we are a part.

2019 Cincinnati Summer Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show
Sunday, June 23rd, 2019 - 10:00am-4:00pm
Oasis Golf Club & Conference Center
902 Loveland-Miamiville Rd.
Loveland, OH 45140
For more information, contact Amanda Look, Event Coordinator at Amanda@ag-shows.com
Visit us on:

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Show Week Sneak Peek!

Meet Susan Groh from When Chocolates Not Enough...
My name is Susan Groh, and I retired from working in medical research at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center 4 1/2 years ago.  My husband and I bought a small camper and have been discovering our beautiful country over the last several years, and I have been enjoying gardening and catching up on movies and books I never seemed to have the time to dedicate myself to while working.  Still waiting for grandchildren!  
I made my first microwaveable shoulder pad about four years ago and gave it to my Mother-In-Law to use for her arthritis and general body aches.  Less than a year ago I began sewing more earnestly and expanding the product line to make the heat pads more useful to those who needed comfort. This is my first Avant-Garde Arts and Craft Show and I am very excited to be a part of it.
I enjoy being able to provide items that help people heal or just help them find comfort after an exhausting or strenuous day. I sort of fell into making my products for sale at craft fairs.  My Mother-In-Law uses her shoulder pad several times daily for overall body aches, and she was using it for her abdominal pain the day my Sister-In-Law took her to the hospital for a bowel obstruction.  During her stay in the hospital, her microwaveable heating pad was allowed to be used (hospitals do not allow electric heating pads to be used), so someone in the family was usually seen at the microwave on the her hospital floor warming it up for her.  One of the nurses asked if I would sell her one, so I did.  She said, "I want to see you selling these at the next craft fair I go to!"  That started me sewing...and here I am with my own little company!
I have sewn since I was a pre-teen, with having a Mom that sewed as needed and a good friend who I like to call Mary Poppins helping me along the way.

How do I describe my creative process?  I live my father's mantra when he would work with wood.  "Seventy percent planning, thirty percent work," he would always say.  I would figure out a way to help fulfill a need and start sewing. In five years, I see myself doing as I am doing now.  Providing products to help comfort people by selling at craft fairs throughout the city. As my company name says, "When Chocolate's Not Enough...,"  sometimes you need comfort beyond the magic of the cocoa bean!

Meet Connie Ciolino of Connie's Crochets...

My name is Connie Ciolino.  Born and raised on the east side of Cincinnati.  I spent 18 years in West Palm Beach, FL and returned home about 6 years ago.  I picked up the crochet hook when I needed something to keep my mind off all the things happening.  I also work full time and pick up the hook after I get home. I’ve been crocheting now for about 5 years now.  I’m self-taught and I love challenges. I look for new stitches and techniques and I like to make things that are unique in nature.  

I have been crafting for approximately 5 years. This will be my very first Avant-Garde Show and I’m looking forward to it I consider crocheting a form of art where I can choose which colors of yarn to put together to create something that is unique and beautiful I lost the love of my life back in 2012 and found it very difficult to grow accustomed to the solitude that surrounded me.  My sisters crocheted quite frequently, and I thought to myself that I could do this.
I’ve always been very artistic, rather it be drawing, painting or making things.  I used to sew a lot in my younger days. The more I made things by crocheting the better I became.  I even ventured out and started creating my own crochet patterns and selling them on Etsy.com. I view Pinterest a lot to get ideas of what people have made and then I try to figure out how to make that item better and more creative where people would like it using my own style and creativity. I’m nearing retirement age and I’d like to continue crafting as I have been creating items leisurely that people enjoy and want.

As mentioned previously, I believe crocheting is a form of art that allows me to experiment and exercise the freedom to create items that are one of a kind and unique.  A lot of my items can be handed down from generation to generation as a keepsake.

Meet Susan Draheim of Nana's Snax Shoppe...
I am married to an amazing man with 3 wonderful children. I am also a Nana of 5 spunky little girls. I have worked in catering for the past 13 years & looking for something fun to do with family.
I am actually brand new to the world of creating these tasty snax, I've only have been doing this for about to two months! This will be my first show and I am very excited.
My friends and family are truly what inspire me to create. I got into this hobby by experimenting with different snax’s around my home. My family and friends tried them and loved them, and the rest was history!
I have always made these tasty snax’s for friends, parties, and other small get-together's, and that is what made me want to start creating them for everyone. My creative process is really just trying out different seasonings to see what works best. I have some fails, but that inspires me to improve my products.
In five years time I would love to be in a small store front in my local village. The message behind my work is simple: Creativity with every bite you take!

2019 Cincinnati Summer Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show
Sunday, June 23rd, 2019 - 10:00am-4:00pm
Oasis Golf Club & Conference Center
902 Loveland-Miamiville Rd.
Loveland, OH 45140
For more information, contact Amanda Look, Event Coordinator at Amanda@ag-shows.com
Visit us on:

See-ya in Cincinnati!

Meet Wendy Ellen of WendyEllen's, LLC...   Hi my name is Wendy Creech and I started WendyEllen’s, LLC in 2018.  We are a small home-ba...