This is our final Vendor Spotlight before Saturday's event. Please let me introduce you to another of our many makers coming to The Mom & Pop Shoppe on Saturday, April 25th. This is another 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. The following profile is Bethany from Beethings Studio Jewelry and her response to a mini-questionnaire.
1). What's your name and what is it that you make?
Bethany Homrighaus of Beethings Studio Jewelry. I create handmade jewelry with collectible beads, gems, precious metals, and found objects.
2). How did you acquire the unique skill set to do what it is you do?
I worked at a high-quality bead store in Washington, DC, for four years. The training was truly rigorous, and the customers were demanding. We had to know our stuff. The store was owned by a family of bead historians/experts. It was fantastic -- like a graduate level training in beads. I had been a frustrated artist for many years before I found this medium. It took me out of the 9-5 cubicle, and I'll be forever grateful for that.
3). What is your best seller?
I sell a LOT of rings. These are not super-involved pieces of jewelry; they're pretty basic, but people are always drawn to them. I adhere semiprecious stones, beach glass/rocks, and other found objects (antique items such as keys, transit tokens, 45 record inserts, etc.) to a plated ring base, and let them dry for at least a week -- then I try to break them all. I wear a lot of these rings, so I know how the metal ages, and I know how to take care of them. I'm constantly coming up with better ways to make them, and I'm always on the hunt for quality materials. Once that ring enters the world, I want it to last, and I want my customer to love it. The rings are guaranteed for life, too -- if one breaks, I will gladly either repair it or replace it.
4). How long have you been vending? Have you done the Mom & Pop Shoppe before?
I started vending in 2003, at small church shows in Northern Virginia, a couple trunk shows in Georgetown, and some smaller boutique events in DC. When I moved back home to the Cleveland area, I jumped into the northeastern Ohio show circuit, as it were, with both feet. This was 2011, and The Mom and Pop Shoppe was my fourth show of the season, on the heels of three really bad shows. Once I met the Crafty Mart staff, especially Juniper Sage, and experienced just an hour of the event, I knew that I'd be okay in this business. I was so inspired by the other makers -- it made me realize that I could live this life. I've participated in nearly every Crafty Mart event since then.
5) The Beatles or the Rolling Stones?
If you would have asked me this five years ago, I'd have said the Beatles. But now that I live in a state where I have to drive a car, I listen to a lot of local radio, and I find that I never change the station when the Stones are on. Especially "Paint it Black," lol.
Thank you Bethany for answering our questions and coming to Crafty Mart's Mom & Pop Shoppe. We'll see everyone on Saturday, April 25th, from 10am-5pm at Musica, Akron Art Museum, and Summit Artspace. You'll be able to locate Beethings Studio Jewelry at Musica.
Click HERE for a complete listing of all the vendors and where each one will be located.