In April 2012, Jessica “Oh Sew Betty” Crossfield began drawing together more than 80 local and regional makers for a juried indie craft fair, Handmade Toledo’s Maker’s Mart.
Since then, Maker’s Mart has expanded exponentially, leading to Handmade Toledo Maker’s Shoppe, offering a year-round, small-scale version of the twice annual Maker’s Mart experience.
The Spring Maker’s Mart is Saturday, May 7. We spoke with a few local makers who have been with Handmade Toledo since the beginning.
Oh Sew Betty
As the founder of Handmade Toledo and Maker’s Mart, Jessica “Betty Floored” Crossfield, has played a large part in Toledo’s creative renaissance.
“The handmade movement is becoming bigger and gaining momentum. More people are interested in buying handmade items. We try to make the shopping process more interactive throughout the community. During Maker’s Mart, all the businesses on the block have a great day,” said Crossfield.
Beyond facilitating the semiannual event, Jessica has also been a vendor under the moniker Oh Sew Betty, selling unique, handmade fashion accessories with a vintage flair, such as handbags, clutches, and wristlets with bold geometric prints and leather details. Oh Sew Betty items are available at Handmade Toledo and via Etsy.
Humblebee Family Farm
Jada and Eric Clingo of Humblebee Family Farm have sold their wholesome food and bath products at Maker’s Mart since 2012. “The Maker’s Mart vendors are like one big happy, crafty family and it is always nice to see new faces… We are all doing what we love, what drives us, and that wouldn’t be possible without the people that come to support us,” Jada explains.
Humblebee’s products are created with a blend of organic, non-GMO, hormone-free, and antibiotic-free ingredients. From a selection of good-for-you toiletries like all-natural shampoo bars to organic cotton candy, Humblebee products can be purchased via humblebeefamilyfarm.com.
Morse code necklaces. Silver feathers bracelets. Repurposed bullet earrings. Jaci Riley’s repurposed jewelry has been a crowd favorite since the first Maker’s Mart. Riley opened the Etsy shop for her company, cravejewelrydesign in 2007 and attracted nationwide attention.
Riley has participated every Maker’s Mart and considers it one of the top shows in the area, “I don’t know if it’s just our gritty, rust belt thing, but it seems this general area is very receptive and supportive of makers.”
Rileys designs are distinctively clean, subtle and functional. “I love the idea of being able to wear something but not always being conscious of it being there. The easier it is to manage the better, and if it also looks cool? That’s great.”
Online at cravejewelrydesign.com.
Jesse Heider began creating botanical microcosms in her youth, and decided to craft wearable versions in 2012. A year later, she opened her Etsy shop, Tiny Terras, and has participated in Maker’s Mart every year since.
Sourcing local botanicals, the small, glass vessels are filled with clippings from Floral Pursuit (in the Warehouse District) and flowers or herbs from her own garden.
During Maker’s Mart, Heider loves speaking to booth visitors who are curious about her approach. “It’s such an amazing experience because Toledo artists are not only showing work, but are involved in the creation of the show. It brings people in from other areas that wouldn’t know about Handmade Toledo or the Uptown District, and it makes people come out of their shells and experience area artists.”
Online at etsy.com/shop/tinyterras.
10am-8pm | Saturday, May 7 | $1
Handmade Toledo | 1717 Adams St.
419-214-1717 | Handmadetoledo.com