Creativity reigns at festival

September 13, 1998|By DAVE McMILLION

BOONSBORO - Mantles, cupboards and candleholders in classic 19th-century designs lined Teresa Suter's tent Saturday at the 27th annual Boonesborough Days.

The paint on the furniture was worn and edges on drawers and doors were rounded smooth.

But they weren't from decades gone by. Suter and her husband William created them that way.

Now the Suters stay on the road during the weekends selling their hot product, going as far north as New York and Massachusetts.

"If we go up toward the north, we can't keep it stocked," said Teresa Suter.

It's a design that took the Suters a long time to perfect.

The aging process starts when Teresa Suter squirts glue over a piece of poplar to give it a rough, bumpy surface. Then two contrasting colors of paint go on.

To give it the worn look, Suter runs a heat gun over edges, revealing a different colored paint underneath.


"It took years and years of experimenting. We try to keep it as primitive as we can," she said.

The couple's Colonial Woodworks shop was just one of many dotting the area in and around Shafer Park.

Tana Crance of Frederick, Md., barely had her shop open Saturday morning when customers began flocking to buy her popular gourd creations. After Crance hulls and dries gourds, they can turn into just about anything.

There were gourds shaped like snowmen, Santa Claus, jack-o'-lanterns, angels and bees.

"This is the year of the bee. We introduced the cat last year and it's still big," said Judy Blackledge, who helps Crance with the shop.

Boonesborough Days is credited as being one of the best craft shows in the area. Sponsored by The Boonsboro Historical Society, proceeds from the show help fund the upkeep of the Bowman House on Main Street. The house, which is owned by the soceity, was owned by John Bowman, an early Boonsboro potter.

Event coordinator Debbie Miller said the two-day show typically attracts between 8,000 and 10,000 people.

It made for a busy weekend in Boonsboro. While tourists flocked to Boonesborough Days, Civil War enthusiasts caught the re-enactment of the Battle of South Mountain off nearby Monroe Road.

Shop owners said they like Boonesborough Days because it is well-organized and is a joy to participate in. Some artisans keep coming back, like Hagerstown watercolor artist Clyde Roberts, who has been coming for 26 years.

The event continues today until 6 p.m.

The Herald-Mail Articles