Collection by Diana Budds

American Craft Council Show


This past weekend, the American Craft Council—one of the country's oldest organizations championing handicrafts—celebrated its 70th birthday at its annual show at Fort Mason in San Francisco. Just over one month ago, I was roaming through the floors of the Festival Pavilion for the Renegade Craft Fair, which I can only describe as the rebellious, punky, and often cheeky little sister of the Craft Council show. Aside from the fact that most everything was handmade, the comparisons between the two exhibitions really stop there. Most of the wares at Renegade were of the crocheted, embroidered, or screenprinted persuasion; at the Craft council show there were ample blown glass pieces, ceramics, and rich woods that were carved and lovingly stained or oiled—essentially, everything reflected much more mature sensibility. What I appreciated most about the Council show was the level of workmanship in the designs on view. Most of the 230 exhibitors seemed to have decades of experience in their crafts and that was imbued in each object. Here, I share a few of my favorites.

The American Craft Council held its 70th annual show at Fort Mason August 12th-14th.
Steve Baldwin of Baldwin Toys creates spectacular wooden heirloom toys for adults and children and has been doing so...
I was drawn to the jewelry designs of Beverly Tadeau, which derive their forms from the shape of tree roots.
Carol Sobieniak of Flying Carpet Studio hand dyes and weaves her tufted loop pile rugs made of 100% New Zealand Romney...
Here's an assortment of Flying Carpet's patterns. Sobieniak also does custom designs.
Every size and shape of wooden spoon was at the Jonathan's Wild Cherry Spoons booth.
Artist Joyce Aysta showed a series of pop-up "Origami Architecture" cards featuring architectural landmarks and famous...
Portland, Oregon-based ceramist Lilith Rocket created this line of white porcelain vessels.
Here is a pair of handsome candlesticks designed by Lilith Rockett.
I really liked the arrangement of cups on this platter.
A colorful assortment of food-safe ceramics by Lyn Swan.
Inspired by Scandinavian and Asian design, Arcata, California-based Peggy Loudon creates objects that "bring a sense of...
Continuing on the Japan theme, these enameled earrings are made by Reiko Miyagi, who studied contemporary art at Tama...
This necklace by Myung Urso is made of small rubber bands, scraps of paper, silkworm cocoons, wire, and a red-painted...
Retro glassware by Bruce Pizzichillo and Dari Gordon.
A ceramic artwork by James Aarons.
This display porcelain dolls by Friedericy Dolls reminded me of a Tim Burton.
To cap everything off, a trio of glass hedgehogs by Suellen Fowler.