Made in North Carolina 2016

Written by Sarah Wall

On Saturday and Sunday, March 12 and 13, the Brooklyn Arts Center held its 6th annual handmade craft fair, Made In NC. With more than 45 vendors displaying their work, there was something there for everyone: sculpture, paintings, clothes, jewelry, photography, chocolates, candles, soaps, potted succulents, and more. The result of all this local creativity? A memorable show for more than 1000 guests.

Laura Saddlemire from D&L Weathervanes displayed her wall hangings, fashioned from recycled copper and cut into different shapes, designs, and animal silhouettes. Saddlemire and her husband, Dan, started out making functional weathervanes designed to go on railings or in gardens, rather than on rooftops, before they started experimenting with wall hangings. Saddlemire said that the copper they use is recycled roofing material so “the colors on the pieces throughout are natural colors from time and weather.” Her favorite thing about them is that “the natural colors ensure that every piece is going to be a little different from the next, so part of the fun is comparing.”

Out in the courtyard, under the huge tent, Drew Coombes from Hatch displayed his metal sculptures and candleholders and wooden potting tables. Coombes creates his art from metal and wood reclaimed from old barns that his father tears down and from farming equipment purchased at auctions. He takes something old and dysfunctional and turns it into something quite beautiful.

Jolene V. Hull from Southern Roots was selling her made-from-scratch soaps and lotions as well as handing out business cards for her massage therapy and aromatherapy services. Hull started making soaps and lotions seven years ago, inspired by her father who struggled with skin cancer. Hull said that at Southern Roots "we do a little bit of everything. We try and keep it all natural: simple, effective, and pure. We make soaps, lotions, creams, lip balms, sugar scrubs, and we carry pure essential oils and organic oils so we can customize items for the customer."

In addition to all the amazing art, the weekend was full of spectacular food courtesy of Catch the Food Truck (on Saturday) and 2 Bros Coastal Cuisine (on Sunday). Lativa Coffee and the BAC cash bar kept everyone’s thirst quenched over this warm, spring weekend.

Wilmington came out in full force to support this community of local artists and artisans and many took home a handmade piece of North Carolina.