Friday, December 20, 2019

Last Minute Holiday Shopping in Avon!

Meet Hanna Porcher of 1 Little Letter...
Mark enjoys woodworking and the creative process that it provides. When not woodworking, he works for his business, A Modern Touch, LLC as an independent contractor. Hanna is a first grade teacher and loves the gift of working with first grade students each day. We began our family business in 2016. Mark has been working on the concept of 1 Little Letter for about three years. Initially he only built for family and friends.

When we are not working, we love to spend time with our two boys, Camden and Connor. As a family, we love spending time together, going to sporting events, and traveling. 

Mark is the creative mind behind this project and is always inspired by family and friends. Handwritten notes have always been meaningful for our family. When our grandparents passed away, what was most meaningful for us were the handwritten notes, cards, and recipe files. Reading through the notes and cooking grandma’s old recipes brings back many happy and fulfilling memories for our family. We were inspired by this to begin a new tradition for our two boys. On special occasions and birthdays, we write personal notes to each child. Our notes to them highlight special memories from the year; things that they’ve done that make us proud, things that made us laugh, and things that have had meaningful impact on our lives. Our idea is for this to be a collection of life for our boys. A collection of sweet memories and notes that they will be able to relive when they are older. Notes from people who we have sadly lost in life, but the memory remains hidden in these boxes.

When Mark gets an idea, he draws it out on paper first. He goes through many scenarios with his ideas and shares with family. He then begins building and modifying as he goes. We want to have an established product that is available for families to create memories and build new traditions with. Family is our core. We hope that others see this and find inspiration to begin new traditions with their families and a 1 Little Letter Keepsake box.  

This will be our first show with Avant-Garde and we couldn't be more excited!

Meet Denise Sutek of Designs by Denise...
I am a retired corporate human resource representative.  As I was figuring out my next journey,  I realized that at one point in my life I was making jewelry and was enjoying it.  So, the journey to making fun, simplistic and wearable with anything jewelry began.
I've been doing this now for about three years, if you don't take into account the years I did this when I was in my twenties.  Then life came along, full-time job, marriage and children. This will be my second Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show.

My inspiration.. My mother was extremely creative and I think I have this inner calling. I got into this very early on, even as a small child, I would attend craft shows.   As early as grade school, I can remember attending a craft class and learned to cane.

My creative process.. I basically lay out my designs, walk away and come back (more than a couple of times) until I see exactly what it should look like and I go from there.
The message behind my work is  fun, simplistic, wearable with anything including fine jewelry.   If you like the look, wear it.

For the holiday season, I have added Christmas Coasters - just because it is the HOLIDAYS

Meet Michelle Black of Ava Rei...

I'm a Mama of a beautiful one year old wild child. Her dad and I are obsessed with her and she pretty much is our whole world. In fact, my shop is named after her - Ava Rei. Full time I work in Human Resources and in my spare time (when I have it) I decided to try out crafting. I really love to be able to create custom home items as well as some items I think everyone would enjoy! I've only been doing this style of crafting for under a year and am really excited each time I learn something new. 
This is my very first Avant-Garde show and I'm excited to see my business grow. Growing up, my family was always crafting but it wasn't until my friend started talking to me about how she crafts that I thought I could do this too! I am inspired by bits and pieces of designs that I see and love to design things that I would want in my own home. I can customize anything and I'd love to talk about making your Pinterest dreams come true! I'll be featuring my ornament hoop ornaments, can't wait to see you at the show.

Meet Erin Bruening of Spin Gourmet Cotton Candy..
I am a wife, mom, teacher and crafter.  I spin gourmet flavors of cotton candy and have tons of fun coming up with new flavors.  I also make, sell and teach string art in my hometown of Parma, Ohio. I have always been crafty and have dabbled with different medias.  Cotton candy is my newest, and most popular venture!
Being creative has always been a part of me. My wheels are ALWAYS turning! I LOVE attending shows, farmer's markets, and local hometown events.  I wanted to be a bigger part of it so I went the vendor route. I started being able to really work on my crafty ideas after my kids became teenagers.  More time to think:)
In give years, I'd love SPIN to be a name that people recognize and think fondly of. The message behind your work is: Eat the candy.

2019 Avon Winter Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show
Saturday, December 21, 2019
Emerald Event Center
33040 Just Imagine Dr.
Avon, Ohio 44011
For more information, contact Becki Silverstein, Event Coordinator at
Visit us on:

Friday, May 10, 2019

Meet your vendors, Avon!

Meet Susan Mariner from Kuddle Katz...
I'm a divorced mother of two with a chronic illness and crocheting is my therapy. I'm a retired hairstylist and nail tech of thirty years. Aside from crocheting, I enjoy golf, coffee, and classic movies. My boyfriend Mike got me into the craft. He said I needed a hobby and I always wanted to learn how to crochet. My grandma attempted to teach me when I was young, but it just didn't click. A few YouTube videos later and Kuddle Katz was born! My mom picked out the name. It’s been nine years and this will be my first Avant-Garde show!
I'm inspired by the wide variety of cat breeds. Their colors, textures, and patterns are beautiful. I also have two cats and their personalities provide plenty of inspiration. I started crocheting different amigurumi animals and realized I was pretty good once my daughter and mom started requesting lots of penguins, elephants, and giraffes. I then found a pattern for cats online. The pattern was for an animeko cat, based on the Japanese picture book Hello I am Animeko, the Story of a Crafty Crocheted Cat. I loved them, so I just started making them. They have evolved throughout the years, and I have made several changes to the original pattern. For example, I make the muzzles bigger and add hand-painted eyes to give the cats more character. 

It always starts with a trip to a yarn store! I like looking for unique colors, patterns, and textures of yarns. I then match various yarns and eyes to create a cat. Sometimes I have a specific cat breed in mind, a picture reference, or a particular color scheme I want to follow. It usually takes me a full day to crochet one cat. I consider crocheting a hobby and I just enjoy seeing people smile when they discover their cuddly companion. I hope I can continue to spread a little happiness with my crocheted cats. My message is that cats are awesome! Everyone could use a cat companion in their life. 

Meet Tracy Smoker from The Craft Momster...
I am a momgineer who likes crafting in my spare time. I have been making crafts of some variety for as long as I can remember, but this will be my first Avant-Garde show. I like to keep my hands busy, I like making nice looking things, and there’s some magic in taking things that were once individual components and creating something new and fun from them. I imagine I found this talent when my mom gave me a few craft supplies to see if I liked it, and the rest is history. 
The stories of my childhood crafting always include references to my parents hiding the tape and tissues in the house because I used anything I could get my hands on. They also knew my craft area floor was clean when you didn’t hear the vacuum sucking up beads or sequins anymore! I try to find inspiration in lots of different aspects of my life.  In January, I finished building a gallon jug igloo in our basement.  I got that idea from a link my mom shared with me on Facebook. Within the next five years, I will still be mom’ing and hope to still be crafting!

Meet Margo Coniam from South Shore Beach Glass...
Hello, I'm Margo!  I am a Radiation Therapist who lives in Avon Lake with two house rabbits. I love to travel and one of my favorite places that I have traveled to is Scotland. You will find that I incorporate a Celtic symbol, the spiral, in a number of my designs. I just started selling my jewelry this year and so far, the feedback has been really positive! This is my first show with Avant-Garde Art & Craft Shows and I am so excited about it!  
I was inspired to start this business when I went to the beach and was astonished by the beauty of these beach glass gems. They look like tiny jewels to me and it is amazing to think that nature took something that was thrown away and of no use to anyone and made it into something that is truly unique and beautiful. I like to imagine the history of each piece of glass; vintage bottles from rum runners, window panes from long-demolished houses, maybe pieces from the over 6,000 shipwrecks that litter the bottom of Lake Erie. Whatever their origin, I love that they are something that was genuinely made from this Great Lake and the stories they tell about this Great Lake!  
A few years ago I started collecting Lake Erie beach glass from local beaches.  At first my beach excursions were just a calming retreat at the end of a busy day.  However, while looking at my beach gems, the creative side of my brain took over and what resulted was my company, South Shore Beach Glass.  I take unique pieces of Lake Erie beach glass and turn them into jewelry and lamps.  What I love about beach glass is that no two pieces are the same and each piece has a unique history and story all its own. 
My creative process first begins on the beach where I will spend hours digging through the sand and wading into the surf to collect as much glass as I can find.  When I take these pieces home, I look at the shape and size of each of the different pieces to best determine what type of jewelry to make each piece into.  Earrings are definitely one piece that takes me longer to make as I have to find two similarly colored, sized and shaped pieces.  It can be a time-consuming process, but it is one that I love.  When I design the wire wraps for my jewelry, I tend to find that I draw a lot of creative ideas from Celtic symbols, specifically the spiral.  The spiral symbolizes growth, birth, and our path through life and reminds us of the circle of life.  Plus, it is a really fun design to make and to wear!  

Meet Kristin Gladish from J Austen Boutique Co...
My name is Kristin and I’m the owner of J Austen Boutique Co. and am very excited to be participating in the 2019 Avon Spring Avant-Garde Craft Show!

The design and style of my pieces were inspired by the elegant sophistication of the women of Jane Austen’s time. I combine casual elegance with whimsical beauty, creating pieces that are easy to wear but add a touch of “fancy” to any outfit.
Every item is handmade by me from a carefully chosen piece of vintage-style ribbon, Czech glass or rounded gemstone beads, and Georgian-era inspired charms.

As a stay at home mother of two, I’m very grateful to have found a creative outlet that I enjoy. I love making beautiful things and sharing them with others!

2019 Avon Spring Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show
Saturday, May 11, 2019
Emerald Event Center
33040 Just Imagine Dr.
Avon, Ohio 44011
For more information, contact Becki Silverstein, Event Coordinator at
Visit us on:

Thursday, May 2, 2019

Spring has Sprung in Avon!

Meet the ladies from Babz Scrunchies...
We are three teenage best friends who love to bake, travel and sew. We attend Avon Lake High School and when we aren’t in school or working on our business we are involved in sports, drama, and choir. Our favorite thing to do together is anything outside but we love hiking and going on adventures

Since the three of us were in fifth grade we always tried to put little businesses together but about a year ago we got serious and started Babz Scrunchies. Together, we had a lot of old clothes that we wanted to put to use instead of just throwing them away. We decided to try and learn how to make scrunchies so we could make fun and unique styles for people. And now, look at us! This upcoming show will be our first craft fair and we are so excited about it!
The three of us used to do bake sales all the time but then we got too old and wanted to find something new to do. After we came up with the idea of making scrunchies Bree and Brooke’s mom lent us her sewing machine and taught us everything we know. Without her support, we would not be where we are today.

First, we get old or stained clothes of ours or our friends and begin to get them ready to be scrunchies. Then we all get together and listen to music while we sew. We are striving to grow continuously and transform this business into our job. Our dream is to be able to keep this business going even through college.
We are dedicated to environmental improvements that foster a sustainable future. Through our company, we hope to reduce the amount of waste created each year and showcase the beauty of recycling by transforming unwanted clothes into fashion for your hair. By supporting Babz Scrunchies you are supporting a mission for a better world.    

Meet Andrew Lorince from 3 TIPSY CATS LLC…
My name is Andrew Lorince and I am the Chef for 3 TIPSY CATS LLC. I retired in 2014 as an MSSC Certified Production Technician after 31 years with a major lighting manufacturer. In late 2014 I went back to Lorain County Community College to pursue a long time dream of becoming a Chef that I have had since the 1980s and in 2018 got my degree in Applied Business / Hospitality and Tourism Management with a major in Culinary Arts. During that time I participated in two American Culinary Federation cooking competitions. The first awarding me a certificate and the second awarding a Silver medal in the Student Pastry 1 category.

After graduation, I took a position as a Food Service Coordinator with LCCC. I occasionally help with events at the college in the Culinary Arts Department and teach non-credit cooking classes. One of the classes I instruct being a class for canning Jelly and Jams.

This will be my first Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show. I attribute my passion for cooking to my Mother, Aunts, and Grandfather. Watching and assisting them in the kitchen when they would let me. Someone was always canning something or fermenting something or just cooking something wonderful.

The creative process that inspires me to produce small batch jellies and jams stems from wanting something different than you can buy at a grocery store, something exciting and in tune with the season and also my wife Dianne who suggests different flavors to try. Something that will make the taste buds tingle with joy something you can give as a Hostess gift that is different. Doing small batches and developing recipes for the different jellies and jams allows the selections I produce to change and rotate thru the different seasons.

Meet Rachel Patton from Patton Clock and Design...
My husband and I live in Rocky River and started this little side hobby in our garage after obtaining all of this great wood and seeing all of the various things that we could create. We upcycle industrial wood cable spools into functional wall clocks, tables, signs, and other art pieces.  
We’ve been doing this for just a few months now. We’ve always been crafty, and it started with just making one clock for our dining room to fill a space on our wall. We'll see something on a home decorating show, Pinterest, or in a store & always end up saying "we could make that ourselves." Having a free day to ourselves is usually when we get a lot accomplished. Having good weather is also ideal since most of the work is done outside.
Since finding the time is challenging with juggling full-time jobs and a two-year-old, in the future, we would like to stay local, but hope to get to the point where we are participating in several community and craft shows a year! This will be our first with Avant-Garde! We love upcycling wood and industrial materials into clocks and other pieces of art. Something that was once considered trash is now the focal piece in someone's home, and that is amazing.

Meet Judy and Huey Kirk from Art by Kirk...

Huey Kirk is a local artist specializing in the Swiss style of Chip Carving. He became interested in wood carving at the tender age of ten. He credits his passion for carving to his father Lluey Kirk Sr., and his grandfather, Charles Buckley. Judy Kirk is a local artist specializing in portrait landscapes and pyrographic art (the art of wood burning). Her fascination with drawing began at about age seven and credits her mom, Betty Smith-Morog, with inspiring her and providing her with art supplies and endless encouragement. 
Over the years, Huey developed his carving skills and eventually studied and perfected his technique under the direction of master career and author Wayne Barton. Judy’s training came through self-study and learning from other artists. She considers herself extremely fortunate to have painted under the direction of some very talented people. Her mentors include a gifted portrait artist named Gladys Ulvila' and Harold Margolis who patiently taught portrait sketching in charcoal. 
Huey is a member of the National Wood Carvers Association and the Lorain County Wood Carvers Club and Judy is a member of the Lorain County Wood Carvers Club. He creates and sells original, intricately carved wedding and birth plate keepsake boxes, plaques and personalized signs for home or business. Both of their work has appeared in the national carving magazine, Chip Chats, as well as numerous private and corporate collections throughout the United States, Australia, and England. Judy is proud to have helped with the design and painting for one of the carousel horses at The Metro Parks Schoepfle Children's Garden. She has exhibited her work in several local galleries and her artwork is included in many private and corporate collections throughout the United States.
Judy and Huey take orders for paintings, pyrographic art, and handmade creations and participates in several art and craft shows each year. They are excited to participate in the upcoming Avon Spring Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show!

2019 Avon Spring Avant-Garde Art & Craft Show
Saturday, May 11, 2019
Emerald Event Center
33040 Just Imagine Dr.
Avon, Ohio 44011
For more information, contact Becki Silverstein, Event Coordinator at
Visit us on:

Last Minute Holiday Shopping in Avon!

Meet Hanna Porcher of 1 Little Letter... Mark enjoys woodworking and the creative process that it provides. When not woodworking, he works ...