3rd Annual St Augustine Makers Fest

We are so excited about what is in store for the 3rd Annual St Augustine Makers Fest on December 9, 2018, 11am-5pm!

We are proudly partnering with the Friends of the St Augustine Amphitheater this year to bring you not only amazing handcrafted artisans, but also incredible musical and theatrical talent to perform at our little shindig. We also are looking forward to stretching our legs a bit in our new venue at the St Augustine Amphitheater. The Mark Lance National Guard Armory will always have a soft spot in our hearts as our birthplace and we are grateful for the hospitality they showed us.

As always, we are the major fundraising event for the St Augustine Public Montessori School, a 501c3, non-profit St Johns County Charter School. Our school is tuition free so fundraising is a big part of what keeps our doors open. If you would like more information about our school please visit our website.

We are currently looking for sponsors who are interested in helping us put on a great event as well as artisan vendors. Our applications for vendors goes live June 1. Please drop us an email at staugustinemakersfest@gmail.com

Stay tuned for cool stuff and information about great opportunities to be a part of this community celebration! If you missed last year's event, check out the highlights in this sweet video from Jon Noeth Videography.

2nd Annual St Augustine Makers Fest Success!

Well we are slowly emerging after a whirlwind event followed by a joyous holiday season. We want to thank all who attended our little shindig, our sponsors, vendors and volunteers who made this year's Makers Fest so fun. This festival is a major part of the fundraising efforts to support the St Augustine Public Montessori School, a tuition-free authentic Montessori experience for grades 1-6. We are so honored that the St Augustine community supports us as much as it does.

Here are some photos from Sarah Annay Photography that pretty much sum up what a great day it was. And yes, if you spy our mayor Nancy Shaver playing the washboard that is not just your imagination! We were thrilled she stopped by and did a little ditty with Lonesome Burt and the Skinny Lizard. Stay tuned for more info here through out the year about our next big event!

Meet Our Sponsors: Matthews Design Group

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Matthews Design Group (MDG) is a proud supporter of SAPMS and the St Augustine Makers Fest!  MDG owner, Rob Matthews, attended Montessori school as a child where he grew up in Hilton Head, SC.  He loved Montessori and says he still can visualize the Montessori tools he used to learn in his classroom. Rob, his wife Keri and their family, have been part of the SAPMS family since its inception.  They helped fundraise to start the school and continued to raise money to grow the school along with donating engineering services when needed.  Their son greatly benefited from attending SAPMS and has transitioned well into public school given the foundation he was given at SAPMS.  The Matthews family continues to support SAPMS because they believe in the Montessori method of teaching and see the value this hands-on alternative style of teaching brings to our St. Augustine Community.  One size does not fit all when it comes to education.  Children learn in differernt ways and need to have options when it comes to their education.  Our community is richer for having charter schools such as SAPMS to serve children in St. Augustine. 

Meet The Makers: Just Make Things

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This is a toast to the charcoal-fingernailed figure-drawing artist and the tech-app-builder fumbling through betas to find elegant simplicity. This is a tribute to the transmission tinkerer with nicked-up thumbs and the photographer clicking her shutter to the rhythm of the creek’s current at sunset.

For the cowlick-haired little guy carefully crafting toothpick-play-doh porcupines and the pigtail girl floating through the living room in a laundry basket boat.

And for the mama packaging hand-stitched pillows to ship, just outside the splash-zone of the blow-up pool.

I’ve met you in the coffee shops, clicking away at your laptops, and at the tattoo studios, freehanding inked masterpieces on breathing canvases.

You’ve rambled the features of the soup du jour, setting my lemon water on the table, secretly daydreaming of hand-hammering metal to jewelry that makes women feel beautiful.

I’ve ordered pencils from your etsy shop, custom-engraved by you, at 3:15 a.m. the day before your kid’s pre-school graduation.

I’ve read your blog, followed your travels to Tanzania, and gushed over the gorgeous handmade totes you carry home.

I bought your adorable felted cake toppers for my wedding and they still sit on the entry shelf in my living room.

I gave your watercolor print to my mother to hang on her beach house wall.

And you know what? Your work inspires her. And me.

You see, you’re putting little pieces of your soul out into the open, to go on and change lives, even in the littlest of ways. Someone cares about what you’re doing, and it doesn’t matter if it’s one person or a hundred million people. By creating, you are connecting.

So raise a cloudy glass of gray paintbrush water and pump your socket wrench clenching fist in the air. This one goes out to you, the makers. You’re changing the damn world.

Meet The Makers: Sheri Goldstein

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My name is Sheri Goldstein.  I grew up seeing my grandmothers crochet creations.  If fact, I still cherish my two baby afghans that she made!  This is where my interest in crochet started.  I can recall sitting together on her front porch swing, hook in hand, fumbling with a ball of yarn.  This was in my elementary school years.  Back then I was content only knowing one stitch.  I don't even think that I knew it was called the "single crochet".  With practice came pride.  My mother actually used a completed piece.  Regardless that it was only a doorknob cover.  It was a great feeling!  

As I got older, I gained control of the tension holding the yarn and it made a huge difference in my stitch.  Still only manipulating that one stitch, my pieces became more esthetically pleasing.  The lines were straighter and there were no gaps or puckering.  My creations transformed from knob covers to friendship bracelets and placemats.

Over the years, I put down and picked up my crocheting hooks many times and each time it seemed easier.  Learning new stitches made complete sense to me and I could understand patterns better.   However, it wasn't until my adult years that I could even begin to compare myself to my Granny.  I love this craft!  The love the beauty in it.  Seeing the work of others amazes me!  It encourages me to push my boundaries, to learn more elaborate stitches and tackle more difficult patterns.

I enjoy making hats, scarfs, ponchos, blankets and more.  I love sharing my creations with friends, family and sometimes a complete stranger.  I'll give a mom-to-be a handmade baby blanket, a Minion or owl hat to a little boy and girl, simple little butterflies to my son's class or an afghan made in school colors to a young adult going off to college.   All of my creations can be a wonderful gift!

I am looking forward to participating in the Makers Fest and meeting other local crafters.  See you in December!

Meet The Makers: For The Love Of Wood

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For me personally, to be a Maker means that I'm capable of creating something from simple items into something special! I've always found a way to use my creativity to fuel my passion for decor and uniqueness. Through the years my style has evolved, and I've used different mediums to showcase my ideas, but since I began woodworking almost two years ago, it seems that I've found the perfect way to fabricate unique pieces that I'm able to share with others. There's something very exhilarating in being able to make something yourself. And something very pleasing in knowing that my creations become part of someone else's home! In today's generation, in which there is a lack of creative skills as children, we find ourselves intrigued by this new "Maker's Movement", and an eagerness to learn how to become a maker... I am excited to be a Maker, and cannot wait to create my next piece!!!

Meet The Makers: Lemonlark Paperie

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Being a maker is in my bones. A part of me. Over the seasons of my life what I make has changed, but the making and creating is consistent. 

As a child, I consistently gathered together friends to do crafts and art projects. I’d gather my friends together to make friendship bracelets and stamp out our own stationery — and then the following week I would encourage us to set up a table in the neighborhood to sell our work. An interesting amalgam of my creative and entrepreneurial spirit being weaved together from a young age. It makes me giggle when I think back on it. 

In college was when I really began to dabble with the idea that I could create for a living. Majoring in both graphic design and fine art, I’ve always enjoyed a mix of analytical thinking, planning and deadlines alongside creating for the sake of creating. I enjoy many different mediums, but watercolors are one of my go-tos. They give me a sense of freedom when creating. Watercolors force you to let go and give in to the process. There’s a beautiful balance of control and letting go with watercolors that as a perfectionist I find I need. 

I feel like being a maker is a part of what it means to be human. We make different things, but making is important. As I read The Gifts of Imperfection by Brene Brown this past year I thought a lot about her guideposts for wholehearted living, particularly the one that is Cultivating Creativity: Letting Go of Comparison. Making helps me tap into new ideas and my imagination. It leads me to transcend the have-tos and should’s. Making helps me live a more wholehearted life.
 

Meet The Makers: Daughter Handwovens

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Being a maker has never seemed like much of a choice for me. Ever since I was a child I was making things; sometimes for the simple enjoyment of creating something I thought was beautiful and other times as a way to solve a problem.

It seems the term "Maker" is a just new title for a very old, and very general concept. I don't know anyone who is not a maker of something- be it dinner, doodles or sculptures. Makers have existed since the dawn of mankind. I believe that humans make because we were made in the image of God- the ultimate and original maker. He made something vast and complex and beautiful and we want to do the same (even if its small, simple or silly). We have been called artists, inventors, artisans and at their core, they are really all the same. Makers are the people who can't help but create the things they think up and can't help but share the things they create.

Watching the "Maker Movement" expand over the past several years has been exciting and liberating. I love seeing people embrace new and old ways of production- wether it is weaving, a process which has not changed much since the first fabric was made, or 3D printing, which is now a rapidly evolving and accessible means of what was once only doable by factories of machinery.

Either way, makers are the people we see meeting their own needs and the needs of their community efficiently and responsibly. It's a community. Makers today seem to be connected by this invisible network, passing information, tips, and business to each other. I love being a part of such a generous community where everyone wants to see everyone else succeed.

Being a maker is to be part of a long history of creatives. We are keeping ancient traditions alive and we are spearheading new techniques future generations will build upon. I can't imagine a world without us. 
 

Meet The Makers: Fire & Cork

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I'm a long time believer in 'homemade, custom-made, made in America, support local'.  I have always loved crafting and developing the unique...adding that something special, something unusual, to whatever I'm working on.  I learned to sew Halloween costumes for my daughters when they were young,  so they could have something different and unique.  I use to create photo albums with assorted pictures, memorabilia, captions, dates, anything to create a memory beyond just a photo.  I love to cook, bake & tweak a recipe to make it my own.  And I love to share this process with my family and friends and now my grandchildren.  

Almost 3 years ago, I was searching for soy candles for the holidays, locally, but was not able to find them.  I had read a story about creating soy candles and it really caught my attention.  As an allergy & asthma sufferer, I had difficulty burning ordinary candles, as they would trigger my symptoms.  So after a great deal of research, I learned to create, through a lot of trial and error and with great support from my husband, a healthy, uniquely scented line of candles.  We both decided to use the discarded wine bottles from our local winery as our 8 oz candle jars (which burn about 45 hours) and he taught himself how to cut & sand these bottles.  We had only been living in St. Augustine for about 2 years and thought we would try to sell some of these candles at our favorite Saturday farmer's market...helping us meet other locals,too.

Well, they really caught on at the farmer's market and because we have so many visitors to the St. Augustine area, from around the country and the world, we were meeting some amazing people...and loving it!  Our customers enjoyed taking home a local, hand-made, clean burning, 'gift-boxed' candle to remember their visit to our beautiful city, and often gifting to a friend, neighbor, or family member upon their return.   They even look us up on their return visits...many are 'snowbirds' and share our love of this town.  We always hear folks saying, 'we love to support local vendors'.  

I also learned that so many people did not understand the importance of enjoying a scented candle that was of pure soy.  So I found myself educating customers on thehealth benefits of soy wax and how to burn these candles efficiently so they would last a long time.  I only use the finest soy wax derived from midwest farms.  I custom-blend all my scents using premium fragrance oils, that are both skin safe & free of phthalates.  Cotton wicks are a must as these, too, contribute to a healthier candle.  We have a strong commitment to American made products and it was very important for us to keep our candles well-priced.    

We have recently added Spanish glass jars to our line in both a 10 oz (burns almost 60 hours) and our 4 oz mini (burns almost 25 hours).  Spanish glass is the only glass that is 100% recycled glass. Our 10 oz candle is known as our 'Gray Label' candles. These are packaged inWe are pleased to be able to raise awareness for the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation, by donating $1 from the sale of each of our 10 oz Spanish glass candles.  

My husband & I are very proud to be a participant in the 'Makers' of St. Augustine.  There is so much talent here among our amazing neighbors and we thank everyone for their support! 

2nd Annual Saint Augustine Makers Fest Takes Shape

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This is an exciting week for us here at St. Augustine Makers Fest! Our panel of creatives got together and went over all of the applications we received from local artisans to be a part of our event. All we have to say is WOW! We have an amazing community of Makers! We have narrowed it from the many down to 25 that we think will give the event a nice mix of styles and disciplines. Acceptance letters go out over the weekend.

Next up on our list are food vendors. If you are a food vendor and you would like to apply to be considered for 1 of our 5 vendors for our Food Market, please fill out our application.

We are also looking for sponsors for our stage, Food Market area, and Makers Stations. Sponsorships start at $100. Please consider donating to not only support St. Augustine Public Montessori School, but also to support a great community event.

Stay tuned to our blog in the weeks and months ahead leading up to our event as we feature our artisans, food vendors, entertainment and sponsors talk about what being a Maker means to them. We can't wait to share them with you!

If you have a question or would love to help out, drop us a line. - Kate Gardiner - Committee Chair, LaKay Cornell of Champagne Hippies - Event Coordinator, Laura Padovano of Laura Lives Social - Social Media Manager, Stephanie Massey - Food & Entertainment Chair, Rebecca Chapman - Makers Stations Chair, Emily Charette of We Are Charette - Graphic Design

staugustinemakersfest@gmail.com