Rockford Arts and Crafts fair has something for everyone

Holiday shoppers check items off the Christmas list with deals from the fair.
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Published: Nov. 13, 2022 at 8:50 PM CST
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ROCKFORD, Ill. (WIFR) - Small businesses are showing off their wares to bring shoppers in before the holiday rush.

From stained glass wine bottles to homemade vegetable dips and even unique quilts, the Rockford Arts and Crafts fair has something for everyone on your Christmas list.

“I’ve been doing craft shows since I was 12 years old. It just has a hold of me. I just love it,” said Shelly Wason who owns her own Christmas décor and floral shop, Creative Corner.

Creative Corner runs out of Janesville, Wisconsin where she hand makes Christmas decorations, ornaments and floral arrangements. Wason has been attending the Rockford Arts and Crafts Holiday Spectacular since they first started eight years ago.

She says the opportunity to create such festive pieces brings her so much joy.

“I had a lady that found something for her sister, that just matched her sisters personality. Everything she bought, just perfect. And she was tearing up,” said Wason, “So it’s just super neat and exciting the impact you can make on the hearts of people.”

Organizers say more than 100 vendors took part in the event. Some items of the small businesses sold items ranging from honey recipes to home decorations to candles and even toffee. Each item different than the last, but all reasonably affordable.

“It’s not just for your Holiday gifts. You can find something for a present for everybody,” said Andrew Rotolo, the show producer of Rockford Arts and Crafts Holiday Spectacular.

Bobbi Pinka, is a painter who uses water colors to create her mesmerizing pictures. She says, “This is my first year here and it has been a great show. It’s really nice.”

Pinka refers to the process of painting as therapeutic and says she will lose herself in her work. Claiming many times she will begin a painting in the morning and won’t realize how much time has passed until her husbands calls for dinner.

She says she is happy that she gets to share her beautiful creations with others.

Rotolo says these vendors create such, “...one of a kind unique items that you may not be able to find at a big box store.”

Some other vendors that attended were Mad Soyentist who makes soy candles, Cut and Paste who makes custom apparel, Amazing Custom Crafts who makes home décor and Honey with Style that takes natural honey and turns it into a variety of condiments.

If anyone would like to donate their Christmas decorations to someone in need or after the holidays, they can drop off their items at Goodwill, the Salvation Army or Habitat for Humanity.