Makers in the USA: Best Arts & Crafts (2017)


The American maker culture was built on a foundation of traditional arts and crafts. These 10 makers, nominated by a panel of experts in the maker movement and voted to the top by 10Best readers, celebrate art and creativity through thoughtfully designed (and often handmade) items ranging from letterpress paper goods to up-cycled sculpture. 

  • Barton Craft & Design

    Barton Craft & Design
    Fiber Wall Art

    Emily Barton, based out of Waco, Texas, uses techniques like macrame, crocheting, knitting and weaving to handcraft fiber wall art accented with copper and wood.
    Photo courtesy of Barton Craft & Design

  • Aleksandra Zee

    Aleksandra Zee
    Wooden Wall Hangings

    Woodworker Aleksandra Zee takes inspiration from the natural textures and colors of the desert when creating her line of wooden wall hangings, tabletops and headboards.
    Photo courtesy of Aleksandra Zee

  • Winsome Easel

    Winsome Easel
    Watercolor and Calligraphy

    Kristin Hornstein believes in the transformative power of words, and her "paper stories told with love" under her brand Winsome Easel are meant to do just that.
    Photo courtesy of Winsome Easel / Etsy

  • Roaming Roots

    Roaming Roots
    Wooden Artwork

    Roaming Roots is a collaboration between two friends who create "eccentric wood wares" for your walls. Macrame wooden wall hangings are accented with natural cotton rope for a bohemian look and easy installation.
    Photo courtesy of Roaming Roots / Etsy

  • Modern South

    Modern South
    Paintings and Prints

    Artist, illustrator and graphic designer Cory McBee uses geometric elements, color and texture in her Modern South paintings and prints.
    Photo courtesy of Modern South

  • Amaranthus Paper & Flora

    Amaranthus Paper & Flora
    Crepe Paper Flowers

    The mother-daughter team behind Amaranthus Paper & Flora craft vibrant paper flower bouquets that continue to bloom throughout every season.
    Photo courtesy of Amaranthus Paper & Flora

  • Tahoe Wood Maps

    Tahoe Wood Maps
    3D Wooden Maps

    You don't have to live in Tahoe to appreciate the 3D wooden maps crafted by Tahoe Wood Maps. Other subjects of these quirky pieces of art include Monterey, Hawaii, San Francisco, the Grand Canyon and Portland.
    Photo courtesy of Tahoe Wood Maps

  • The Diggingest Girl

    The Diggingest Girl
    Printmaking and Illustration

    Emily Louise Howard, the woman behind The Diggingest Girl, explores classic themes of myths, folklore and legends – as well as her Appalachian ancestry and Cherokee bloodlines – through her original illustrations and prints.
    Photo courtesy of The Diggingest Girl / Etsy

  • Once Again Sam

    Once Again Sam
    Felted Curiosities

    Sarah Mandell (her initials are SAM) works from a studio in Greenville, S.C. where she makes colorful and soft felted curiosities – cactus, gourds, baby birds, snails, penguins and even an anatomical heart.
    Photo courtesy of Once Again Sam

  • MyMacramania

    Macrame Home Decor

    Each wall hanging from Macramania is hand-woven and 100-percent unique. Artist Heidi Martin uses a dipdyeing technique to add a pop of color to her pieces.
    Photo courtesy of MyMacramania / Etsy

The top 10 winners in the category Best Arts & Crafts Maker are as follows:

  1. Barton Craft & Design - Fiber Wall Art
  2. Aleksandra Zee - Wooden Wall Hangings
  3. Winsome Easel - Watercolor and Calligraphy
  4. Roaming Roots - Wooden Artwork
  5. Modern South - Paintings and Prints
  6. Amaranthus Paper & Flora - Crepe Paper Flowers
  7. Tahoe Wood Maps - 3D Wooden Maps
  8. The Diggingest Girl - Printmaking and Illustration
  9. Once Again Sam - Felted Curiosities
  10. MyMacramania - Macrame Home Decor

A panel of experts partnered with 10Best editors to picked the initial 20 nominees, and the top 10 winners were determined by popular vote. Experts Suzy Ekman (Makers Market) and Erin Godbey (Makers Collective) were chosen based on their knowledge and experience of maker movement in the USA.

Congratulations to all these winning American makers!

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AlertThe Experts

Suzy Ekman

Suzy Ekman

Suzy Ekman

Erin Godbey

Erin Godbey

Erin Godbey