What do two women do when they enjoy working together and have a love for handmade American craft? They join together to bring that passion to the general public! In this case the women are Diane Sulg and Michaella Dalton who recently combined forces to become the ArtShowGirls, producers of handmade shows and markets.
Their first show is A Crafty Christmas which will debut December 8 and 9, 2017 at the Hickory Metro Convention Center in Hickory, NC. The show will feature more than one hundred artists exhibiting an enormous spectrum of media in a wide range of price points. Also on tap is the Carolina FolkFest, which will spotlight folk artists including outsider art and untrained artists May 18 and 19, 2018 also held at the Hickory Metro Convention Center.
“We both share a love of folk art and began looking at the Hickory Metro Convention Center as a venue for that show. At the same time we were in the early stages of planning a holiday craft show. When we met with officials at the Hickory Metro Convention Center, they said they have had a strong demand for a Christmas show so it became clear we found the perfect home for both shows in Hickory” said Michaella.
Both women have owned and managed handmade galleries and they also both produced indoor and outdoor art festivals. Most recently, Michaella was the Show Director for the American Craft Retailers Expo (ACRE) shows in Philadelphia and Las Vegas. She also spent ten years as a manager at the award-winning Maddi’s Gallery and 4 years as owner of 32 Flavors Boutique in Charlotte. She was the producer of Craft at the Crossing in Huntersville, NC and the Queen City Craft Market in Charlotte, NC.
Diane Sulg claims she has been in the craft world “forever.” She owned Maddi’s Gallery and is founder of American Craft Week. She was the founding director of the Festival of Trees in Davenport, IA which has raised millions to support regional arts programming and she produced the Iowa Arts Festival in Iowa City, IA.
The secret of their success is that they know each other’s preferences and strong points so they naturally divide the work easily. While they have worked on businesses and projects together for a long time, another part of their secret formula is that they are a mother-daughter duo who shares the same experiences. Diane summed it up saying, “Together we have been wholesale buyers, gallery managers and now art show producers. And the best part is sharing the wonderful art and craft world with someone you love.”