Spring Lake Woods
My bowls are a reflection of my philosophy and work. I love how they change shape as they dry after turning. While I strive for consistency, each bowl is unique and “moves” as it desires. My bowls and spoons are functional, natural, durable, food-safe, hand crafted, and beautiful, as the projects in Celebrating Birch demand.
I make organic soaps, lotions, balms, herbal tea blends, and soy wax candles. All of my products are minimal ingredient, and are formulated for sensitive skin types. I started making these products for myself because I could never find a store bought product that I liked that wasn't full of questionable synthetic ingredients. I love having products that can truly nourish skin. I am self taught. I began by learning everything I could about each process and created recipes and methods that worked best for me and my needs. I use every product that I make and I'm thrilled when my customers appreciate what I have to offer them.
The Seventh Oak
Shayna Swiers is a Mankato MN artist and jeweler who has been honing her craft for over a decade. She achieved her Bachelors of Fine Arts (BFA) and Masters of Arts (MA) degrees from MN State University, Mankato. Shayna is the Sole proprietor of The Seventh Oak, specializing in wire weaving techniques and metaphysical crystal meanings, healing and lore. Pairing the healing energies of copper, crystals and Intention to create energetic companion jewelry that will aid and guide her clients along their life's travels.
“I find serenity while working on a new piece, the repetitive weaving of the wires is my favorite kind of meditative practice. That “energetic flow” helps connect me to the healing message that the crystals wishes to convey."
Becky is a beader and jeweler who breathes new life into prefabricated vintage jewelry and charms.
"I make chainmail & scalemail jewelry. It all started with wanting a set of pauldrons from the MN Renaissance Festival. I thought I could make my own, then I did. From there I found my love of chainmail and all the different weaves you can create to make a masterpiece. I really enjoying learning new weaves and how everything fits together. Recently I have taken up printmaking. Carving the designs is very satisfying and then seeing it come to life on paper makes it all worth it. I love learning news things about both these crafts."
Every Day Ceramics
Vending at a market selling my handmade ceramic pieces is the materialization of a long time dream. A dream that never felt important enough, prudent enough, or realistic enough. It was a dream that was always sent to the "someday" file in the way back of my mind. But in the fall of 2020 after having three daughters within three years, I found myself facing a huge and important and extremely blessed task - raising three strong, beautiful little girls that grow up into women that aren't afraid to dream big and do with their lives whatever feeds their souls. What better way to do this than to lead by example? In March I joined the Makerspace and even though I hadn't thrown pottery since high school it immediately began to feed my soul. I cherish my role as a stay at home mom and I have come to also cherish the evenings I spend every week at the Makerspace playing in mud, learning, and creating. I find myself creating primarily functional pieces. It's the every day moments that make up the majority of our lives so I hope to create art that will fit into and bring consistent moments of beauty and inspiration into your every day.
Under the Sun Herbs
Alise Torgusen & Bil Carda
Regenerative farm located in rural Madelia. Owned and operated by Alise Torgusen and Bil Carda. We offer a large selection of culinary herb products, herbal teas, elderberry juice and jelly, garlic, ginger, and turmeric products. Our farm is largely focused on soil health, because we strongly believe that food produced in healthy, living soil makes for healthier humans!
Art of the Earth
Lindsey Beyer is a St. Peter native who has made North Mankato home. She studied Studio Art and Communications at Gustavus Adolphus College, Commercial Art at South Central College, and Technical Communication at Minnesota State University, Mankato. Professionally, she is the Director of Web Marketing at Minnesota State Mankato. In her free time, she continues to explore a variety of artistic mediums (including dance and music), and loves spending time outdoors. Her art is nature-inspired. She will have photos, ceramics, stone earrings and small paintings available for sale.
Woven and Worn Co
My name is Courtney Christensen and my business is Woven and Worn Co! I have always loved rocks. Growing up, I had a huge collection of rocks that always seemed to be growing. But, only recently have I started turning this love of stones into something more. I now turn these beautiful semi-precious stones and crystals into beautiful pieces of jewelry. I make necklaces, bracelets, and earrings, all of which are made with nickel free metal or precious metals! Custom orders are always welcome as well, as I love to make products specific for YOU.
Jason Lee Willis Novels
Jason Lee Willis
Jason Lee Willis is the author of The Alchemist's Map, best described as 'a Bilbo Baggins character who goes on an Indiana Jones adventure in 19th century Minnesota', as well as several other self-published novels. He has also produced two nonfiction works on Christian Bible studies. As a creative writing instructor, he and his students have produced two volumes of short stories, Tales from the Haunted Valley, as a fundraiser for the writing program. As a professional storyteller (isn’t that what English teachers do?), he’s done historical lectures and video series, book talks, radio segments, podcasts, and recently submitted a short story in Rhonda Gilliland’s “foodie” anthology, Cooked to Death.
Willis grew up in South Dakota and currently lives in Minnesota, where he lives the life of a hobbit by gardening, writing, walking around barefoot, wearing vests, fishing, and going on adventures with his wife, Julie.
Vintage Silverware Jewelry
Dave Johnson born and raised in southern Minnesota. After 40+ years working in manufacturing and now retired took a trip out West and became interested in antler décor/creations. He used antler sheds to make his designs. During another trip out West Dave became interested in jewelry-making using vintage silverware. Since vintage silverware doesn’t appeal to some people, Dave can take the old family pieces and give new life to it in the form of bracelets, necklaces and rings. There’s something very enjoyable about wearing jewelry from the box of silverware your grandma or mother had
“Living in a rural environment, you witness the wonders of the natural world; you also learn to be resourceful with what you already have. This lesson has a profound impact on my work.
Plants demonstrate nature’s resilience and capacity for resurgence. Using Micron pen, various inks, collage, and masking techniques, the contrast between drawing processes echoes man’s simultaneous reliance upon, struggle against, and impact on the environment. Displayed are the results of ongoing experiments in mixed media drawing which focus on the balance between oppositions: wet versus dry media, controlled versus uncontrolled processes, dense versus sparse mark-making, and representation versus abstraction.
A plant’s simple silhouette reflects that there is great value in the ordinary items or experiences that occupy our existence; while undoubtedly beautiful, nature is also diligent, unrelenting, and aggressively powerful.”
I have been making functional pottery for about 10 years. I am currently the President of the ceramics club Mudworks at MNSU. My goal as a maker is to give people the same joy in the piece they picked as much as I did when making it."
Check these examples of his amazing work!
Red Sky Forge
I've been into wilderness survival ever since I was a kid. I have taken lots of classes on primitive survival and honed my skills in many different environments. In 2012 I founded the Minnesota Primitive Skills and Survival School and have been teaching ever since.
I decided to become a bladesmith because as a survival instructor who has gone into the wilderness with just a knife to survive many times, I know the importance of a well designed, well made blade, and wanted to be able to create them myself. Every blade I make is designed and created with practicality, beauty, and durability in mind, so that it can be used for a lifetime and more.
Link to Minnesota Primitive skills and survival school website:
I make all natural beeswax Candles. it started as a home project and quickly became a business. Each candle has quartz crystals inside to share my passion of Geology with others. Since the beginning I have branched off and started to share Geology on a larger scale with rocks and minerals that I also sell. Recently I have become very good my newest Craft, Flint knapping which has been added to the inventory of amazing candles, rocks and minerals.
Prairie Willow uses traditional indigenous designs and techniques as inspiration to create dream catchers, jewelry, and beaded items. A variety of other items, including beeswax infused food wraps and beverage covers are offered. SkyAnne Sickler, the owner of Prairie Willow, has a dedication to learning how to live a more sustainable life. Because of this commitment, some of Prairie Willow's offerings follow this life style. She enjoys being challenged by customers who ask for custom orders and is always learning and expanding on her knowledge about the work she does.
Nibbe is a Southern MN ceramicist who has a passion for traditional wood burning kilns, which he gained much experience using in college at Tainan National University of the Arts, Taiwan R.O.C learning and perfecting his technique. His works range from sculptural, decorative and functional; every piece is more creative and unique than the last.
“Currently, my work is either wood fired or electric fired. My approach consists of practiced improvisation creating one of a kind pieces. Each piece is stamped with a depiction of a sapling, representing growth and change, and after 15+ years making these concepts drive me forward. I invite everyone to come find a piece to fall in love with, there’s one for anyone!”
Unique Items by April
I make sublimation items! Tumblers, metal signs, puzzles, blankets, and lots more. I do a lot of personalized items which are my favorite. Customers can choose a color theme, add wording, and even photos. I've always been crafty but just recently this year I tried my hand at sublimation and I love all the options of making personalized items that people can use for a while and that last a long time. Everything is good quality and I've been able to make items with meaning behind them. That's my reason behind doing what I do!
Emily Stark Photography
Emily is a photographer from St. Peter, MN. I grew up in the country and have always appreciated rural landscapes, particularly the trees that stand along the boundaries of fields. I don’t have any formal training in photography, but enjoy learning as I go, exploring and playing with my camera, editing software, and compositional strategies to just see what happens. I tend to focus my photography on landscapes and items in nature, with special attention to the odd, distinctive, or macabre. I use both my cell phone camera and a DSLR, with editing done in Snapseed and/or Photoshop. I sell prints and notecards in various sizes. I'm also very excited to be part of the collaborative team behind the Doll Head Oracle Deck!
Electronic technician, artist, maker and professional in-home appliance repairman by trade, Jeremy Kuznia found an eye for art while attending college for electronics in 2002. He uses an array of materials including disassembled machinery and electronics, aerosols, slime, and acrylic paints, to capture chaos and it's artifacts in his work.
A 3D printing enthusiast, Kuznia has built and modified six 3D printers. Using FDM or mSLA technologies, prints knickknacks, doohickeys and jewelry.
Kuznia has curated a dynamic mix of eye-catching, humorous, and at times explosive answers to the question, "What would happen if I...?".
Flame In Hand
Dustin Swiers started glass lampworking back in 2008 when he moved to Mankato for schooling. Swiers received two degrees from Minnesota State University, Mankato, a BFA and an MA, both focused on ceramics and sculpture. He created Flame in Hand Glass as the sole proprietor in 2010. Swiers has moved his studio set-up to work out of the non-profit Mankato MakerSpace, so he can be accessible to teach classes and create while volunteering his time as a Shop Lead. Dustin's work ranges from functional to decorative, blending disciplines of Lampworking, Off- Hand Glassworking and Stained glass techniques with Metalworking, Electroplating and Lapidary to create jewelry, custom blades, vessels and sculptures.
“As with many artists, the process is what keeps me engaged and pushes me to make. My greatest pursuit is discovery in the act of creating; simultaneously learning about my materials, craft, and self.” Dustin Swiers
Blue Collar Burns
Kendrick is an aerosol mural artist and over all Maker. You have probably seen quite a few of his works around Mankato! He is indeed one of the founders of the Mankato Makerspace, and he oversees our finishing / paint room as a Shop Lead. He has recently been working on the Glowforge at the space to make wooden ornaments and magnets for your gifting pleasure.