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Christmas in July features diverse, interesting vendors, artisan wares
by Kristen Daniel
Aug 03, 2011 | 164 views | 0 0 comments | 0 0 recommendations | email to a friend | print
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The Christmas in July Craft Faire, put on by the Guild of the Utah Shakespeare Festival, drew vendors and patrons to the Randall Theatre lawn Friday and Saturday.
CEDAR CITY – The Guild of the Utah Shakespeare Festival hosted a wide variety of unique goods at its 11th annual Christmas in July Arts and Craft Faire Friday and Saturday on the Randall L. Jone Theatre lawn.

Artisans from California, Nevada, Colorado, and Utah came to peddle their hand-crafted wares to eager festival-goers, tourists, and local patrons. It is difficult to guess what one may see at the annual craft fair.

Artist Marianna King Caudill creates collages from fabric used in the costumes at the festival. She creates framed art work with the fabric remnants as well as Christmas Ornaments, greeting cards, and bookmarks. The Guild collects and cuts the fabrics and sells them in bundles, Caudill said.

“I started buying the fabric pieces, and when my husband asked me why, I said I didn’t know, they’re just so pretty.”

Finally, she decided to create unique and beautiful fabric collages.

Caudill splits her time between California and Cedar City. She and her husband were drawn to Cedar City by the USF and loved it so much they bought a home here.

Local artist Todd Prince, who is also the Frontier Homestead State Park manager, is a gourd artist and sells his many different creations in painted and carved gourds at a booth with his wife, who also sells jewelry and jam.

Prince is educated and trained in archeology. He is also an avid organic gardener, and after growing his own gourds and wondering what he could do with them, he contemplated how gourds were used prehistorically.

“My knowledge of prehistoric gourds inspired me to apply my creativity to the versatile but challenging medium,” Prince said.

Some other artisans at the fair used their own life as inspiration for their crafts, such as Hot Flash Designs from Las Vegas. Christina Chandler said she and her partner Deborah Young use their passion for vintage buttons to make large and creative bracelets and many other designs.

There were many quilters and hand-crafted jewelers, as well as home-made jams, jellies, and soaps for shoppers to peruse and purchase.

LaMar Noorda from Salt Lake City was present at the fair with painstaking designs in wood, including mantle clocks carved from reclaimed, discarded wood, and beautiful cutting boards and pizza paddles created in wood mosaics.

Such care and thought were poured into his treasures, it was an enjoyable experience in itself to talk to him and learn about his creations.

This was the story again and again at the fair. The people brought in by the event were as interesting and desirable as the beautiful things they brought with them.

The craft faire is the largest event for the guild each year, and is used to raise money for the Utah Shakespeare Festival.

The next event the guild will be at is the one-day Cedar Arts Festival on Aug. 27. They also offer the Curtain Call Luncheons, which run Fridays and Tuesdays through the summer season, as well as Sept. 30 and Oct. 7, 14, and 21. The luncheons include informal discussions with festival actors and company members. Visit www.bard.org/about/guild.html for more information.

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