Photography by Francois Gagne
Check out these stories about some of our current exhibitors.
* Please note, profiles are updated regularly.
Margarita specializes in original handmade limited edition designs of vintage glass jewelry. The business was started when owner Margarita was living on a Greek island making ceramic jewelry from Italian synthetic clay, which she used to bake in the sun. The designs were very colorful and she had her own boutique, selling to people from all over the world. Eventually Margarita moved to Athens and started doing jewelry with vintage glass and Swarovski elements. She believes glass captures light and is fascinating to work with because color becomes the central focal point.
Margarita's designs are feminine with a classic aesthetic and a touch of glamour. Her line consists of limited edition earrings and necklaces. She chose glass jewelry because of her background in theater and love for glass. She is inspired by old 1930's films, where the women graced the screen with their femininity, sophisticated style, glamorous gowns and stunning jewelry. She is also inspired by the color and cut of vintage glass and how the colors interplay with the light and emit their beautiful vibrations.
What makes Margarita unique is her response to customer feedback and custom work. She has a strong old-fashioned work ethic with caring service. This helps her to keep her collection fresh by listening to what women want in an accessory. She works alone because of the care and precision that goes into each product.
Safe Harbor Confections began their business when a company was closing and they felt with a business model change, they could make it a success, have fun and give back to the community. They feature artisan chocolates made of high quality ingredients. They are unique because of their community-mindedness. Safe Harbor Confections gives 5% of their gross income back to animal welfare organizations in the form of product and profit, and they love to volunteer.
They keep their products fresh by changing things up; this year they are launching a new candy bar that features pets available for adoption at the shelter. Their favorite personal product is their filled chocolates... great taste, great ingredients, great look and great value for the customer.
Silks by Lucia started when founder Lucia wanted to be at home with her son, born in '82. She always had an interest in textiles and figured it would be the perfect time to start.
Featured products of Silks by Lucia are marbled silk scarves with matching silk scarf clip and marbled silk shawls, all one of a kind and carefully handmade. Lucia chose to work with silk scarves because she wanted to work with color and design accessories with no size attachment!
What makes Silks by Lucia unique is having a product that is just so timeless. She is selling something that can be worn today or 50 years from now. You can pick up a scarf from your grandmother's drawer, put it on, and it looks just as fashion forward as anything you buy in the present. Scarves and shawls fit everyone, and absolutely transform an outfit into something new. Lucia keeps her collection fresh by always looking for new and exciting color combinations that work with basic pieces. Color is infinite!
The reason Silks by Lucia keep coming back to NEPTS? She loves that all the work in the show is handmade by local artists. Customers are aware of that and are anxious to buy local and meet the artists who create the product, making NEPTS a very special show.
Second Spin Vinyl Record Designs was established in 2011 by Monica Foley and Gary McAuslin. Together they create"green" products including Recycled Vinyl Record Bowls, Vinyl Record Wall Art & Clocks, and Vinyl Record Jewelry.
Second Spin Vinyl Record Designs features eco-friendly art, jewelry, and home décor. The materials they use are ones that were about to be discarded and they are transformed into affordable, unique conversational pieces. Every product created is made by co-owners Monica and Gary in their home-based studio.
A few words from Mike Rainville - founder, owner and president of Maple Landmark Woodcraft
A small push from mom - "you need to find something to do" - when I was a pre-teen, and construction materials around - both sets of grandparents were carpenters - started me down the business path. I liked being my own boss and making things - something that this country doesn't do much of anymore.
In the beginning, I sold small items at the county fair and craft fairs. Shadow boxes, pin cushions, tic-tac-toe games, lamps, bookends, cribbage boards and small cars, trains and trucks were all part of the product line then. In 1979, I made my first wholesale sale to a store called Kennedy Brothers. After college, in 1983, I built a shop, with the help of my grandparents, and Maple Landmark Woodcraft began in earnest. Now some 35 years later, I have 35 employees and 4 generations working with me.
Maple Landmark Woodcraft has an incredible variety of products, but everything is still made here in Vermont. We are known nationally for our NameTrains, which are celebrating their 20th anniversary, this year as well as our baby rattles and other trains and vehicles. We still make cribbage boards, though I don't drill each hole by hand anymore! We also do ornaments and cutting boards and quite a bit of custom products.
Northwoods Gourmet Girl began as an effort to create a healthy approach to making pantry food staples. It first began when founder Abby was looking to create healthy ketchup while she was pregnant with her son. Northwood Gourmet Girl now has 18 all natural products. Some of the featured products are Charred Onion Ketchup, Sweet & Spicy Walnuts, Jalapeno Relish, and Raspberry Jam.
They are a unique specialty foods business - the ingredient list on each product is so short due because of the lack of chemical and artificial ingredients!
Maine Balsam Fir Products began when husband and wife, Jack and Wendy, decided to "live off the land" of there 100+ acre woodlot. They chose to supply herb related businesses with their "pure balsam needles" and then Wendy decided to use her sewing skills to create their own product... balsam pillows for Maine gift shops.
Their featured products are balsam in bulk, draft stoppers, trivets, neck rolls & their original artwork adorned pillows in 3 sizes. The pillows have been in over 5,000 gift shops, museum stores, & health food stores nationally for over 18 years.
What makes Maine Balsam Fir Products unique is their desire to stay small on purpose to keep the high quality standards. They harvest their own trees and process them in their own secret method, insuring the freshest and best balsam scent.
Maine Balsam Fir Products keeps coming back to NEPTS because it's like "old home days" for them. They are continually renewing old friendships & making new contacts that keep them coming back. They love the smallness and high quality of the show; it's their favorite one of the year!
Cook-In-The-Kitchen was bought in 2007 by Chef Tim Goodwin who wanted a business of his own that didn't include selling widgets. When he came across Cook-In-The-Kitchen he knew what he was looking for; a line of products he believed in, enjoyed, and would feed to his family.
Cook-In-The-Kitchen has all natural, preservative free food; made for convenience without compromising values. Featured products include Pancake & Waffle Mix, Muffin & Scone Mix, Gourmet Soup Mixes and a new line of Herbal Dips. Chef Tim keeps his collection fresh by adding a new lines – for 2012, he's added a new line of dips and is anticipating another new line in the spring!
Chef Tim loves NEPTS because of the nice staff, willing to work with him to get into the show when challenges were thrown his way. The customer base is friendly and the atmosphere works well.