Sorry, I didn't realize how long it's been since I posted. Last week I was in Virginia with a friend. We stayed at her daughters house (complete with grandchildren, so I felt right at home.) We went there to visit The Bizarre Bazaar. This was the 36th Christmas Collection (there is one in the spring too.) It was held at the Richmond Raceway Complex in Richmond, Virginia. There were 541 exhibitors and I think I saw them all. (At least I thought I did.)
Now I don't know about you, but I've been to so many craft shows during my life that I have a tendency to walk through quickly (as quickly as my bad knees will allow) and look for something that jumps out at me. I'm looking for something I don't usually see. We had two hours there and I was afraid it would not be enough time, but for me it was. It was a nice show, but there were a lot of commercial vendors there which I don't want to see.
I did find one jeweler that I really liked. It was obvious that she did indeed make her own jewelry. (It wasn't something you would find just anywhere. I found myself wandering back to her booth several times until I finally bought a pair of earrings. ) This was the only booth that had unique jewelry and something that wasn't just assembled purchased parts. Not everyone realizes the difference but if you make jewelry you do. She said she could tell I understood handmade jewelry by looking at the earrings I was wearing. (I had on a pair of slip-trailed earrings. No way that duplicates can be made of that.) Check out her website, www.celestefriend.com. She names each of her designs by the first person who buys them. My pair was called Denise (I think....... don't expect me to remember everything exactly. I'm old!)
There were some other places that I did make purchases too. They were not necessarily handcrafted but they were interesting and gifts for friends and family. I had to buy some sweet treats too. (There were lots of samples out there and of course I had to taste them. Weight Watchers be damned that week....... but not this week.)
One thing I did find that really, really tickled me was a pair of cherry wooden salad tongs made in the shape of the gingko leaf. (Don't know what it is about that leaf, but I'm hooked.) The site for these is www.cpbasils.com.
Several years ago, my daughter and I stumbled upon the North Carolina Craftsman Guild show at the Raleigh Fairgrounds the weekend after Thanksgiving. That show has to be my all time favorite. I thought I'd died and gone to heaven.