Friday, June 22, 2018
Business

Holiday shop stocks one-of-a-kind gifts crafted by local hands

SPRING HILL — Sellers and shoppers alike are poised for a new opportunity to keep things local during the holiday season when a new boutique offering higher-end arts and crafts has its grand opening Friday and Saturday.

From origins such as carpenters' workbenches, home sewing machines and potters' mud pits, 30 artists and craft makers have passed selective muster to display their goods in what originator Kathie Watson has dubbed the Holiday Gift Shoppe.

Watson, herself a crafter, primarily of jewelry, and owner for six years of the Creative Hands shop at 3477 Deltona Blvd., said of the seasonal endeavor next door: "We have so many area artists and crafts people; I want to give them an outlet."

She knows whereof she speaks.

Watson, 60, has been teaching crafts since age 18. And local hobbyists have flocked to Creative Hands, where Watson teaches or oversees classes in painting, jewelry making, card designing and other skills.

When she put out an invitation in September to creative minds to put forth their wares in a classy setting, Watson made her guidelines clear.

"I don't want grandmother's egg cartons," she said. "I want them to be lovely things."

Among the handmade items she has selected are photographs, tole painting, woodworking, stained glass, jewelry, mosaics, greeting cards, garden art, watercolor and acrylic paintings, candles and fabric creations.

As Watson surveyed incoming items last week, she noted: "I think the place will be filled, about 800 square feet. It's going to look like a gift shop, not a crafts fair, but a mixture, things intermingled."

Saying she hopes to "wow" shoppers, the artisan-entrepreneur has set the stage. She has installed a centerpiece gazebo and arranged a vintage corner with an antique ironing board and wooden washtubs to showcase needlework and textiles.

"I like vintage things," Watson said, "so the shop has a vintage flair."

Vendors have established their own prices and are paying a commission on sales for the opportunity to have their wares showcased for six weeks in an artfully designed space and with a clerk on hand, rather than having to mind the store themselves.

On pricing, Watson said, "We want it to be affordable Christmas shopping for local people, one-of-a-kind gifts for reasonable prices. We'll even have $2 items. Acrylic and watercolor paintings will be higher prices, topping out at maybe $200."

For the grand opening on Friday and Saturday, light refreshments will be offered, seasonal music will be playing, and fragrances will fill the air, Watson said.

As her advertising flier states: "We have a wide variety of talent. Stop by and be amazed."

Beth Gray can be contacted at [email protected]

Comments
Tampa Bay workforce development initiative looks to Houston for lessons

Tampa Bay workforce development initiative looks to Houston for lessons

The biggest hospitals in Houston had a problem.To earn a prized institutional certification, they needed more nurses with bachelor of science degrees in nursing.But local colleges were more focused on turning out nurses with two-year degrees who, to ...
Published: 06/22/18
Health care IT company CareSync shuts down, laying off 292

Health care IT company CareSync shuts down, laying off 292

TAMPA — The days ahead were supposed to be bright.For weeks, the future of health care tech company CareSync had been thrown into question as founder and CEO and founder Travis Bond unexpectedly departed, kicking off multiple rounds of layoffs. But t...
Published: 06/22/18
Coal and gas hold onto their share of electricity production, despite massive push for renewables

Coal and gas hold onto their share of electricity production, despite massive push for renewables

Here’s an intriguing set of facts: Coal produces the same percentage of the world’s electricity as 20 years ago. Oil and gas remain about level, too.Same for nonfossil fuel sources. In other words, the massive push towards renewables over the past co...
Published: 06/22/18
Brink: Why have Florida’s working-age men left the labor market in droves

Brink: Why have Florida’s working-age men left the labor market in droves

A cancer lurks within Florida’s otherwise rosy job numbers, one that’s been called a quiet catastrophe and an intractable time bomb.Too many men between the ages of 25 and 54 have stopped working.Economists call those the prime-age years. Incomes gen...
Published: 06/22/18
Pride divided no more: St. Pete Pride comes back together

Pride divided no more: St. Pete Pride comes back together

ST. PETERSBURG — The 16th annual St. Pete Pride Parade is getting ready to march along the downtown waterfront the second straight year. But many hope to move past the division caused last year when the parade was uprooted from its original hom...
Published: 06/22/18
For sale: A Tampa Bay area elementary school where you can eat tacos and buy wine

For sale: A Tampa Bay area elementary school where you can eat tacos and buy wine

ST. PETERSBURG — For sale: a 104-year-old elementary school with restaurant and wine shop. It even has a title company where you can close the deal.Less than a year after completing a major renovation of the historic North Ward school, developer Jona...
Published: 06/22/18
Domain Homes: Buyers love them, some others don’t

Domain Homes: Buyers love them, some others don’t

TAMPA — When the 2008 financial crash brought down the nation’s housing market, hundreds of home builders went out of business. Among them was Sharon McSwain Homes in Atlanta, forced to liquidate in 2009.But just as developers like to develop, builde...
Published: 06/21/18
Updated: 06/22/18
Armature Works developers sue Ulele and city of Tampa over use of nearby building

Armature Works developers sue Ulele and city of Tampa over use of nearby building

TAMPA — Two of the city’s hottest developers — the companies behind Ulele and the Armature Works — are heading to court over control of an old city building that sits between the hit eateries. Both want to redevelop the city&...
Published: 06/21/18
Orlando airport first to scan faces of U.S. citizens on international flights

Orlando airport first to scan faces of U.S. citizens on international flights

Associated PressFlorida’s busiest airport is becoming the first in the nation to require a face scan of passengers on all arriving and departing international flights, including U.S. citizens, according to officials there. The expected announcement T...
Published: 06/21/18
Saboteur or whistleblower? Battle between Elon Musk and former Tesla employee turns ugly, exposing internal rancor

Saboteur or whistleblower? Battle between Elon Musk and former Tesla employee turns ugly, exposing internal rancor

Hours after Tesla had sued its former employee on charges he had stolen company secrets, and days after chief Elon Musk had called him a saboteur, the Silicon Valley automaker made a startling claim. The company had received a call from a friend of t...
Published: 06/21/18