5 Great Lazy Daze Finds

The Lazy Daze Arts & Crafts Festival brings hundreds of artists to Cary. This year, they’re bringing their talents from as far away as Alabama, Indiana, New York and even California.

Among all these artists are 40 who keep shop right here in Western Wake.

Meet a handful of them here, then stop by and pick up their treasures while you’re enjoying Lazy Daze this weekend.

Kenneth Neilsen

Cary Pottery, Cary

In your booth: We developed a new style of altered torn vase that’s been selling well; we’ll have several styles of that and other fine art pieces. And of course we will also bring lots of mugs and other functional houseware items.

Favorite part of being an artist: Opening a kiln and finding that a new experimental glaze recipe turned out even better than I was hoping it would!

Your inspiration: Lately, I’ve been inspired by early 20th century art pottery forms, and pieces from such potteries as Rookwood, Roseville and Hull.

Memorable response to your work: I received an actual hand-written thank you note from Grant Llewellyn, conductor of the North Carolina Symphony, after he was presented with one of my larger art bowls.


Marianne Smith

Ma Vie de Boheme, Cary

In your booth: My booth will be filled with reconstructed clothing that I make from sweaters and T-shirts that no longer have a home. Garments that were gently or greatly loved are turned into ponchos, skirts, tunics and coats for women, girls and even your furry friend.

Favorite part of being an artist: There are no rules. There is no right or wrong.

Your inspiration: I love fashion, as it’s such a visual language and a great way to express who you are. I guess that’s why most of my creations are wearable.

Memorable response to your work: A woman bought one of my sweater coats to wear for her wedding. That was pretty special.


Michele Yellin

Folk Artist, Cary

Your art: I make brightly colored, textured folk art from new and reclaimed wood, paste, acrylic paint, bottle caps, buttons, beads, found objects and twigs.

Favorite part of being an artist: The actual process of creating — drawing my ideas, cutting and sanding wood, applying paint, adding the components to the piece.

Your inspiration: I like to see other artists’ work, especially in person.

Memorable response to your work: Years ago I donated a small ink and watercolor piece to an auction and later found out that the winning bidder redid her half bathroom, all the way down to the tile and fixtures, to go with her new artwork. That blew me away.


Robyn Johnston

Whimsical Robyn, Apex

In your booth: Garden art pieces including my birds and owls, planters, garden stakes, picture frames, and fairy doors.

Your inspiration: I’m inspired by the medium, to take pieces that would be discarded and create something brand new. That it’s not perfect is what lends it personality.

Memorable response to your work: Engineers and men who do tile work want to know how I do it. It’s an affirmation.


Keith Veronesi

Keith’s Woodwork, Fuquay-Varina

Your art: I work with over a dozen different species of domestic and exotic woods. Just about everything I make is one of a kind, simply because no two pieces of wood are the same.

Favorite part of being an artist: The craftsmanship. Scratch that … it’s buying the tools!

Your inspiration: Taking a pile of nothing and creating something functional or beautiful. My inspiration comes simply from, “What if.”

Memorable projects: A woman asked me to make something out of an old door from her grandparents’ house. I made four wall shelves and incorporated old door knobs and cabinet pulls from the house. That was a special and rewarding experience.


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