KEARNEYSVILLE – The owners of the recently opened Devil’s Due Distillery, located on James Burr Boulevard, wasted no time in opening their doors to vendors and artisans, providing a place for these people to market their products.
A craft and vendor fair on Saturday, held at the distillery, featured nine different stalls offering visitors the opportunity to purchase a variety of goods. You can, of course, also enjoy a tasting of the drinks offered by the Devil’s Due Distillery.
Several of the vendors shared that this was one of the first opportunities they’ve had to show off items and participate in an open venue since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Keisha Burns, owner of Hedgesville-based North Mountain Apothecary, explained that she makes soaps and scrubs and just about anything else for body or skin care.
“I started in October before COVID-19,” Burns said. “I am certainly happy that things are waking up.”
Burns said she was fortunate enough to have her products on display in several local markets, as well as an online presence.
Cortney Helms, owner of Liberty Candle Co., explained that his business grew from COVID.
“During COVID, I started this as a hobby,” Helms said, explaining that initially she didn’t know anything about candle making. “I knew I loved them.”
Helms currently offers its wax candles and scents through shows like the one held on Saturday.
“Fortunately, they open,” she said
In addition to candles and skin care products, shoppers could find specialty glass designs offered by Wye Creek Designs. Fred Scire explained that most of the designs come after the mold designs. Scire created a specialty piece for the distillery that was offered at its stand on Saturdays, as well as regularly at the distillery, where several artisans exhibit and sell regularly.
Jen Reckley, owner of That’s Sew Jen, has turned her love of quilting into a business that gives her hours of fun, as well as a little bit of profit.
“I’ve been quilting for about 20 years,” Reckley said, sharing that she took her first quilting class when she lived in Washington state, where her husband was stationed in the U.S. military. “My grandmother quilted and I loved it.”
Karen Lavarnway, owner of Lavarnway Designs in Warrenton, Va., Also loves what she does. Although Lavarnway mainly creates large pieces of furniture in her woodworking room, she designed smaller pieces to bring to the living room on Saturday.
A full-time firefighter in Loudoun County, Lavarnway said she had been working with wood for about 10 years. She shared that because so much of her work is made to order, she typically doesn’t go to shows, adding that Saturday was only the second time she has attended.
Across the aisle, Casey Frazier, independent consultant for Thirty-One, has done numerous shows, as well as private events. Likewise, Theresa Rinehart, freelance designer at Chalk Couture, also does shows, as well as private events.
Aaron Raines, owner of Shenandoah Metal Fab in Shenandoah Junction, transported his well-known dinosaur to the vendor’s window at Devil’s Due. Raines has offered a variety of custom metalwork pieces to buyers, although his company offers a wide selection of metalwork not only as art, but in the form of fences, porch rails, and other types.
Author and illustrator Barbara Guay, whose grandson Wylie McDade co-owns the distillery, was unique on the Saturday show. Guay’s table featured selections of books she wrote and illustrated, as well as specialist paintings. Guay said she can make special orders, including illustrating and even designing her family’s crest.
Fairies are a specialty for Guay, who said that the love of such people comes from his mother, Eunice.
“She told me they came from milkweed pods,” Guay said.
McDade was happy with the turnout for the first show at the distillery.
“It was a good crowd for Saturday,” he said, jostling between welcoming guests, supporting vendors and packing bottles of distillery products for satisfied customers.