Last Friday I went to Field + Supply. It’s a GORGEOUS crafts fair in Kingston, New York at the Hutton Brickyards. There’s a lot to discuss. The location on the Hudson, the bonfires, the smell of bonfires, and the artisanal everything were all simply wonderful. But my favorite news to share is that this fair, and the buzz it has generated, has completely changed the market for beautiful, hand crafted pieces. And finding, owning, and loving them just got easier.
“Crafts” has historically had an OK reputation — not bad, but certainly not exclusive, aspiration or really valuable like “fine art”. Crafts have commonly been associated with “DIYs”, meaning, you could, if you wanted, make them yourself. NOT ANYMORE, my friends. Field + Supply, and the man behind it (Brad Ford), has showcased these craft makers, their stories and their pieces, from furniture to accessories, jewelry and more, in beautiful, thoughtfully designed spaces online and real life. It clearly goes viral, and suddenly “crafts” have an amped up rep. They become desirable and accessible when sources are tagged and talked about, and everyone wants a piece. Yep, that pun was intended. And the best part? The trend doesn’t get stale; makers produce in small scale so all pieces are limited, but with more craftspeople represented in these upscale, Instagrammable settings, finding unique pieces for your home gets a helluva lot easier.
On that note, here are some of my faves discovered last week. All of them are producing gorgeous work that has an inherent positive energy.
1. Nell Goods
What caught my eye from this booth were the mixing of woods and glass. Craftswoman Eileen Baumgartner sources woods with beautiful, interesting markings, like “spackled maple”, and shapes them into functional pieces like bowls and vases, and decorative items like Christmas ornaments. Some are going into the Earnhardt stockings this December. But really, these items are simple, different and versatile and the wood type and surface texture have a nice, homey warmth.
Lawson Fenning is a craft shop in LA that sources artisans’ works and showcases them among their own line of furnishings. They came cross country to be at Field and Supply, and let me tell you, that is not an easy feat with 50+ pieces of furniture and fragile things. But anyways, two of their artisans that I loved were Bradley Duncan Studio and Vincent Pocsik. Bradley makes wood wall sculptures and functional pieces (like side tables) with a signature repeated pattern, like a peg board or zig zag. Vincent makes artsy accessories that sometimes mix uncommonly paired materials, like “ebonized walnut and cast bronze”. All of these are statement pieces that grab your attention and make you want to look and touch, which I did, and they are key to making a space truly more thoughtful, interesting and personalized.
East Fork created a booth filled with their ceramics that, either intentionally or by chance, was an on trend color palate for 2019. Literally paint companies like Benjamin Moore, Farrow and Ball, Sherwin-Williams and Behr announced their colors of 2019 AFTER Field and Supply and the colors pretty much equate to the East Fork Booth. Needless to say, it was beautiful, fresh and was clearly well-received. And beyond the colors, the textures, shape, and scale of the pieces were all admirably perfect.
Jay Teske’s booth was sizable and simple, and I went in for the same reason others probably did — their cute leather swing is so. cute. BUT when I was in there admiring the few items on their booth shelving, I realized the SHELVES were leather. This is new and exciting and how gorgeous would these look in home office or living space? The hand-stitched leather sits atop simple brass supports, and it all seems quite strong. High five to these guys for taking something so common and switching it up for the win, and I can’t wait to put these into a client project.
AND that’s a wrap. I could actually go on and on but these are some favorites (not all), and I’ll sprinkle more into my IG feed in the coming weeks. What other craftspeople do you know? We’d love to check them out and share.