Sugarloaf Craft Festival

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Last weekend I attended the Sugarloaf Craft Festival in Somerset NJ. The two day event features 250 artisans who hand make jewelry, clothing, home goods and other crafts and arts. Small business owners from around the world come to sell their merchandise at this festival that originated in 1976. I enjoyed seeing all the hand made creativity in one space.

La Shot Photography by David Maynard was one craftsman I enjoyed getting to talk to. He specializes in photography of entrances, gardens, castles, land and seascapes. We spoke of our travels and our mutual appreciation of Italy. As he photographs doors I encouraged him to make his way to Madrid. He and his family have traveled to Ireland, England, Scotland, Italy, Germany, France, Wales, Greece, and 37 states in the US for his photography. I was taken with his photograph because at first glance they look like paintings. Originally studied to be an accountant he decided to pursue photography after is mom gave him a camera for Christmas. As a self taught photographer he began printing in a dark room then switched to printing Giclee’s on canvas. The use of the print and archival inks allow for high intensity color depth. He finishes the process by protecting each print with a UV protective finish which fights fading. David offers mounting in scoop wood frames or gallery wraps of each of his pictures. La Shot Photography is located at 1013 Delaware Rd., Buffalo NY.

The picture I purchased “View from St. Marks” in Venice, Italy. La Shot business cards.

Bar Harbor Goldsmiths from Virginia had unique wire and beaded jewelry.The company was created by Marilyn Handel a Bowen and Reiki Practitioner. I always have a hard time finding jewelry that fits me perfectly. I have a very small wrist and size five fingers so when I find pieces that are my size I have to buy them. That is exactly what I found at the Bar Harbor Goldsmiths booth. The wire wrapping of their pieces is delicate and thin as opposed to thick wire that can be uncomfortable. Handel’s partner Mr.Hans helped me find a piece that fit me perfectly. Bar Harbor Goldsmiths sells both wholesale and retail with locations in Mt. Desert, Maine and Bowling Green, Virginia.

I loved talking to Kelley Bowers creator of Angels of HeART. Painting and creating art is what she studied at the Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale in Florida. Her work has been displayed in many museums, shows and stores on the east coast. She created Angels of Hearts after a personal tragedy. Her boyfriend’s sister was murdered and became a highly televised case. As the days and months passed she continually saw feathers floating and images of them in the form of tattoos and merchandise. She believed the feathers were a sign that her loved one was still present. All of the feathers and spiritual signs inspired her to create Angels of HeART. Each angel wing sculpture is hand made by Kelley.The process includes cutting the wood and sculpting the wings first. She then paints, glazes and adds a crystal to each sculpture that can be personalized with a painted message. Her artwork has not only helped her heal but makes a strong connection to people who have been through tragedies or believe in angels. When my mother and I saw her art work we were instantly touched as our spiritual beliefs and personal life experiences have led us to believe in angels. Kelley was gracious in letting us admire her work in silence as she is accustomed to seeing people become emotional at the sight of her artwork. Kelley Bowers not only creates art but long lasting connections with her buyers through the significance each piece has for them. When you speak to Kelley you can see how much she loves making her art and how she wants to help others heal. As each piece is customized and made by her I will be sure to share a picture of the one we ordered here and on social media when I receive it. Although she makes her artwork here in New Jersey her pieces are sold throughout the U.S. Angels of heart

Next stop in the Sugarloaf Crafts Festival is Oaks, PA on November 4th, 5th and 6th, Sugar Loaf. Let me know if you attend the festival and what art you enjoyed learning about.


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