Thursday, July 10, 2014

A Visit to the Country Living Fair

Textiles and sundry goods
Last month in the beautiful weather,  I took the opportunity to trek up to Rhinebeck N.Y. to check out the Country Living Fair. Sponsored by the very popular Country Living Magazine, this is their second year in Rhinebeck. The fair travels to many other venues, but this one was the closest for me. The three day fair dominated the whole Dutchess County Fairgrounds site. It was huge! I usually attend the NY Sheep and Wool Festival at the fairgrounds, so I was familiar with the location, but I was a bit unprepared for the enormity of it. Most of the buildings that house the animals for the Sheep and Wool, were chock full of vendors this time.

The fair features not only handmade crafts, but also a very sizable collection of vintage goods, so there is a lot to discover for all interests.  As I browsed around, I found some dubious handmade and/or "vintage goods amongst the "real stuff." You really have to be aware of what you're buying and check things out well. Some people didn't seem to care; they just wanted something/anything, to take home from the fair. Many items seemed overpriced and I was pretty taken aback when I saw vintage buttons for $8 and up a piece. Some buttons on cards were as much as $50! Guess I'd better go back through my stash and re-evaluate what I have.

Old mailboxes and curiosities from a Kingston NY store

Vintage "junque"

The main reason for my trip was to visit my friend and fellow HV Etsy teammate, Sue from Digilio Designs. This was Sue's second year at the fair, and it's a real feather in her cap to be chosen again. Sue's work is perfect for this fair, and she was busy and pleased with the pace of business when I found her booth.  The fair lasts for three days, the booth fees are pretty steep, and it gets pretty tiring for the vendors, so I was happy, but not surprised, that she was doing well. I am very biased, but I think Sue had some of the best work there.

Sue Digilio enjoying a quite moment during the busy day.

Some of Digilio Design's handmade soft sculpture dolls
After chatting with Sue, I browsed around for hours, had a bite to eat and headed home. My only purchase was two lovely framed silhouettes of dogs: one of a Mini-schnauzer, and one of a West Highland Terrier from With Heart and Hand, Wendy Schultz Wubbles, Silhouettes and Scherenschnitte.  . The skill involved in her work is amazing, and I love the faux wood grain frames and the hand painted backgrounds in each piece. What can I say, I'm a sucker for my dogs!  Wendy's work makes an attractive addition to my home that brings me pleasure every day, and knowing that Sue was so successful warms my heart.
With Heart and Hand's collection of silhouettes

Just one of a collection of vintage trailers at the entrance to the fair. Fun!

Old trailer with an eclectic assortment for sale

Kathryn - Huzzah! Handmade


  1. This looks so fun! I really hope I can go next year.

  2. I, too bought "the art of paper cutting" for Mandi's first wedding anniversary of "paper"...beautiful work! I also snagged some vintage bark cloth for $16! ...made my day!

  3. This looks like a lot of fun! I've been to the crafts fair at Rhinebeck but not this Country Living one.