Vendor Spotlight: Pierce Jewelry

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Vendor Spotlight: Pierce Jewelry

This is just one in a series of Vendor Spotlights where we let those who will be sharing their wares shine a light on what it is they do. We asked Sarah from Pierce Jewelry to indulge us by answering a few questions. Here's what she had to say:

1). What's your name, where are you from and what is it that you make?

My name is Sarah Pierce, I live in the greater Akron area and Pierce Jewelry is my business/passion. I make jewelry that has a strong nature element to it and has a classic design aesthetic. My signature leaf shape and hammer texture carry across the whole line.

 

2). How did you acquire the unique skill set to do what it is you do?

I have always loved jewelry and I did a lot of beading when I was younger. In high school I took a basic metals class and knew that was what I wanted to do. I went to the Cleveland Institute of Art and graduated with a BFA in Jewelry and Metals in 2010. I have been working on developing my line since then, as well as working at a bench job for a jewelry company.

3). What is your best seller?

Earrings are definitely my best seller and favorite item to make. The simple leaf studs and leaf outline studs sell the most and are a classic everyday earring that you can put in and forget about.

4). How long have you been vending? Have you done a Crafty Mart show before?

Last year was my first year that I really tried doing the vendor circuit and I have participated in several Crafty Mart shows before. They are great shows and so convenient because they are the next town over from me. I am really excited about this year's show season and starting it off with a Crafty Mart show.

5). The Beatles or The Rolling Stones?

Definitely the Rolling Stones, my taste in music leans heavily to rock and some metal. This tends to surprise people when they meet me, because I am a bit shy until I really get to know someone.

Thanks, Sarah! You can look for Pierce Jewelry at Crafty Mart or shop online here.

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#ProtectTheArts Postcard Writing Party

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#ProtectTheArts Postcard Writing Party

Today-- Monday, March 20th-- is National Arts Advocacy Day, where arts supporters from across the nation will descend on Washington to make their voices heard, as they do annually. This year's date is especially well-timed considering the recent threats to Arts funding at the national level.

So what can you do to help, short of hopping on a plane to DC to advocate in person?

1. First of all, pledge your support locally! Our friends at ArtsNow will even keep you accountable by sending you a reminder if you choose. Make your pledge here: https://www.summitartsadvocacy.org/pledge-to-help/

2. Donate to an arts organization that you care about. You can donate to Crafty Mart here or you can browse this list of local arts organizations in Summit County. Contributions don't have to be large to be meaningful-- every little bit helps!

3. Got more time than money? We get it. Join us on Thursday, March 23rd from 4-6pm at the Akron Art Museum's Cafe for a postcard writing party! We will provide postcards, stamps, and art supplies so that you can encourage your representatives to support federal arts funding. Or you can email your representatives anytime.

4. And, finally, most importantly, show up for the arts. Support local artists by shopping local (Our next show is The Mom & Pop Shoppe on May 13th!), attending performances, and sharing your love for local arts on social media!

As Akronites, we're very grateful to have bi-partisan support for arts funding at the state and local level, but other places aren't so fortunate. If you value the importance of access to the arts in a community, then now is the time to make your voice heard!

 

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Panel Discussion: Selling Your Idea

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Panel Discussion: Selling Your Idea

THE MAKER SESSIONS, SERIES 2

SESSION #3: SELLING YOUR IDEA

Crafty Mart is excited to announce that we're extending our efforts to help nurture and develop our local maker community. That's what the MAKER SESSIONS are all about. With the assistance of the Burton D. Morgan Foundation and the Akron Art Museum, we have put together a second series of five panel discussions designed specifically for artists and makers to address some of your business needs. Want to know how to better turn your efforts into a sustainable income? This is for you.

And just in case you missed it: here are some takeways from our last session about "How to Be a Crafty Superstar" as reported by the Cleveland Plain Dealer.

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The next in our second series of Maker Sessions is fast approaching! It will take place this Thursday, March 30th at the Akron Art Museum, where we will be discussing best practices on how to sell your idea.

Our panel of experts will answer questions on branding, applying for funding (through philanthropy and private-sector investment), and the importance of costumer service skills online and in person. We will look at some examples of well-branded businesses and get you some quick and dirty tips on how to establish and maintain a cohesive brand while still having time to produce quality art.

John Myers will be kicking off our session by speaking about the importance of accessible entrepreneurial training.

John joined the University of Mount Union in Alliance as the Entrepreneur in Residencein early 2015, supporting entrepreneurial education, Technology commercialization and asDirector of the Business Incubator in Alliance a joint venture between the community and theUniversity. Until Early 2016 he also worked for Wastebits, an early stage company that provides cloud based software services to the waste management industry.

From early 2006 until the end of 2015, John worked with the not for profit University of Akron Research Foundation (UARF) as Executive in Residence and President of the Akron InnovationCampus, the real estate management arm of UARF. In his many roles at UARF, John assistedin the commercialization of technologies and provided economic development and communityoutreach services for the University of Akron (UA). Through the Greater Akron Chamber, he provided business and entrepreneurial support services to businesses, start-ups and the community.

John will be sharing some tips and tools to simplify the formal business planning process to help creatives stay on track with their business goals.

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Nicole Mullet, who will be our panel moderator for the evening, was named Executive Director of ArtsNow in July of 2015 where she works to ensure our incredible arts and culture assets are fully leveraged to support and strengthen the region's economic and social vibrancy. In addition to her work with ArtsNow, Nicole serves as immediate past president of Torchbearers, a service and leadership development organization and independent affiliate of Leadership Akron. She is also on the board of the Gay Community Endowment Fund and PechaKucha Akron.

MEET OUR PANEL:

Terra Milo is Your Computer Girl. She teaches entrepreneurs all the computer skills they need to launch their business and spread their mission in the world. From websites to newsletters to social media, she will empower you with skills and confidence so you can grow your thriving business with ease.

Terra is excited to share her expertise on how to sell your idea on social media and how to keep up with all your accounts.

You may not know Andy Taray by his face, but if you've been-- you know-- ANYWHERE COOL IN AKRON, you've seen his work. Zub's? The Merchant Tavern? HiHo Brewing? The Nightlight Cinema? Square Records? CRAFTY MART? Yeah, he branded them all.

Andy's t-shirt company, The Social Dept, recently celebrated 10 years of making Akronites look cool and celebrated by opening a shop on Front Street in Cuyahoga Falls.

Andy will share some branding tips from his expertise as a designer and from hustling the craft show circuit for over a decade.

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Kyle Kutuchief was named Akron program director for the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation in May 2015.  The foundation invests in journalism, the arts and the success of cities where its founders once published newspapers. Knight focuses on downtown and its surrounding neighborhoods through investments in talent, opportunity and engagement. 

Previously, Kyle worked in higher education and was a part of two initiatives to strengthen regional collaboration.  He has served on a number of nonprofit boards and acted as president of Torchbearers, a young professionals organization focused on leadership development and community service. He received Akron’s 30 for the Future Award and Cleveland’s 25 Under 35 Movers and Shakers Award. In 2016, he was named one of the 25 most influential people in Northeast Ohio by Crain’s.

Kyle is excited to join us to tell us more about the Knight Arts Challenge, and how artists can stand out when applying for grant money.

Beyond all the great info you'll get from our speakers. The Maker Sessions is also a place to connect with other local creative entreprenuers! Catered food will be provided, and food and drink for purchase are available at the Art Museum's Cafe. Don't miss this chance to network with fellow artists and makers along with free admission to the Art Museum's exhibits and galleries.

While you're at the museum, make sure to check out their current exhibitions! For Please Touch, the museum commissioned a group of regional artists to create new works that actively engage audiences of all ages. Turn the Page: The First Ten Years of Hi-Fructose is a unique opportunity to see in-person the works that have been featured in the popular (and beautiful!) art magazine over the last decade.

Whether your ambition is towards a hobby that pays for itself, a professional operation that is your livelihood--or something in between--these Maker Sessions will give you practical and usable tools to help you protect, produce, and thrive!

Registration and snacks will take place from 6-7pm, and the program will begin in the Museum Auditorium at 7pm with a panel discussion followed by Q&A with the audience.

GET YOUR TICKET HERE!

The Maker Sessions are made possibly by the generous support of the Burton D. Morgan Foundation and the Akron Art Museum.

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Crafty Mart Team Profiles: Selah Ashe

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Crafty Mart Team Profiles: Selah Ashe

We're excited to announce that Team Crafty Mart is growing yet again! Please help us welcome Marketing Intern Selah Ashe who is finishing up her final semester at Kent State University and will be joining us through the summer!

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GET TO KNOW THE CRAFTY MART TEAM: MARKETING INTERN SELAH ASHE

My name is Selah Ashe (the artist formerly know as Sydney) and I am the marketing intern for Crafty Mart! I am a writer, chef, musician, nerd, entrepreneur and wannabe artist. I write pretty much any and everything from poems to plays to papers, and I’ve been writing since before I can even remember. I play the electric guitar (awkwardly) in my free time and I also sing (fairly well).

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I have one cat named Rajah. We’ve had a complicated relationship ever since I rescued her from Summit County animal shelter in 2013, but I love her and she loves food, shelter and sometimes me and that’s okay because at least she’s consistent! I love to travel, cook, bake and read. I’ve recently tried vegan baking and I’m sad to say it's not going well-- but I won't give up yet! 

 

I’m super excited to join the Crafty Mart team and I can’t wait to see where this internship will take me!

 

 

 

 

In November of 2015, I started a natural hair and skincare company called Seken Hair and Body. We are a company that is dedicated to to educating and helping consumers make conscious decisions when buying products for the skin and hair. Our official launch is April 27th, 2017. So keep a look out for Seken Hair and Body at a Crafty Mart event!

 

We're so excited to have Selah's help this year, and look forward to her becoming part of the Crafty Mart community of friendors.

Curious about the rest of the Crafty Mart team? You can visit all of our team profiles here!

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The Jennifer Davis Award for Fostering Creative Community

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The Jennifer Davis Award for Fostering Creative Community

On Friday, we had an amazing time at our crafty beach bash fundraiser!

Some highlights include:

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Andy posing with his prize from our silent auction: his chance to brew his own "lab rat" beer at R. Shea Brewing Company! We can't wait to try it.

And, finally, the highlight of the evening:

Crafty Mart is very excited to announce that the Inaugural Jennifer Davis Award for Fostering Creative Community was awarded to none other than Ms. Jennifer Davis!

Davis runs smARTStudio Akron out of her home in Highland Square.  To learn more, visit www.smartstudioakron.com

Jennifer is well-known for her pop culture painting parties (including the likes of Bill Murray and David Bowie),  her creative programs at the Akron Art Museum, and as a founding member of the Akron Craft + Social Club which hosts monthly creative activities while raising funds for charitable causes.

Not only does she strive to help her students in ability, but her focus on process over product has had a therapeutic effect on hundreds of Akronites.

Jennifer, who was surprised with the honor, was awarded (by her own daughter!) a handmade plaque-- assembled by Crafty Mart team member Marissa and hand-stamped with the words "Happy HeART" by Alexander of the Exquiste Corpse Boutique-- and a custom unicorn David Bowie robot by the Robot Consortium. 

She was also award with a $200 check. The award was funded by generous donations from Jennifer’s fans as well as a portion of each ticket sold to the event. The leftover funds will be used to sustain the award as an annual honor given to a person that embodies Davis’s sparkly spirit and builds community through creativity. If you would like to make a contribution to that award you can do so here, and we will post a permanent link on our website soon!

Jennifer is such a loyal community builder that she's even plugging local products while in bed with the flu! (See below.)

Feel better, Jen! We love you!

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