HughE Dillon: PMA Craft Show Kick-Off

Preview party gives buyers a sneak peek at what's for sale at this year's show

The 36th Annual Philadelphia Museum of Art Craft Show, presented by the Museum’s Women’s Committee, kicked off their annual event Wednesday with a preview party at the Pennsylvania Convention Center, where the show is being held through Sunday. Below (from left to right): Reid Bodek, chairman of the PMA Craft Show, Gail Harrity, president and COO of PMA, Nancy O’Meara, Craft Show manager, and KYW morning anchor Carol MacKenzie.

Below: Alexandra Newstadt, grandmom Alyne Freed, and committee member, Tema Freed got the night started off right by picking up a few cute items. Tema got a great scarf. Alyne tells me she starts out small the first time, then by the last day she picks out larger items that she’s eyed every day she’s there as a volunteer.

Below: S Ashley Murphy (right) stands in his award-winning booth (PMA’s Best of Show), as his dad, Emmett Murphy, explains how his son takes old telephone poles and creates these sculptures.

Below: Meredith Antick catches up with friend Autumn Graves, president of Girard College.

Below: Lizzie and Lori Vogt are not twins—although many people think they are—but they do have similar taste in jewelery. Here they are checking out Jaclyn Davidson Jewelery; their mom has several pieces from Davidson’s collection.

Below: Lisa Woolbert, 2012 event chair, and Richard Woolbert.

Below: This year, the PMA Craft Show is featuring artists from Scotland, including Jill Blackwood. Jill tells me that she is very impressed by the setup and quality of the crafts at the show. I love her clothing and think you will too; it’s very colorful, and is reasonably priced.

Below: Judy Pote, chairman, Craft Show directors, and Eric Rymshaw and James Fulton, from Fury Design. Eric and Jim shared with me that they just went to a Thanksgiving feast cooking demonstration at Cook earlier this week where Supper’s Mitch Prensky taught them to make the most delicious sweet potatoes with maple syrup.

Below: Barbara and David Fraser, from Yardley, have been exhibiting David’s work at the PMA Craft show for many years. David tells me it’s the best show in the country. The former president of Swarthmore College, David only shows his work here and at the Smithsonian Craft Show. Demonstrations and presentations by artists and design professionals take place daily at the show, and on Friday, David will show visitors how to make a four-ply cord with a ropemaker and then demonstrate ply-split braiding with a homemade gripfid.

Below: Dodi Fordham loves handbags and was in heaven when Joy Horvath’s work caught her eye.

Below: I always find the most colorful, artistic fashions when I attend craft shows. When I spotted the gorgeous outfit Pam Hamilton (center) was wearing, I just had to capture it. On the right is NBC10’s Steve Levy, and on the left is Charlotte Hamilton, who’s looking mighty dapper too.

Below: 2008 PMA Craft Show Chair Eve Walker and husband Bill. Eve tells me she is just starting to get busy announcing the instructions on how photographers can participate in the 2012 Philadelphia Museum of Art photography competition. Look for details on the website in January.

Below: Sinead Cummings and Harry Bodek looked very fashionable. Most of the money raised at the preview party goes directly to the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Over $9.6 million has been raised since the show’s inception. Today there is a scotch-tasting event that will start at 6 p.m.

Below: Michael Braunstein, CBS Radio, and Ashley Ridall. Ashley was excited to check out the clothing, as well as the fashionable scarves she saw in a booth. After seeing so many amazing exhibits I felt inspired to go home and get creative, and at the same time was making a list in my head of what I should buy when I returned to the craft show this weekend.

Below: Donna Siegel Moffa checks out her new purchase as she sits in the cafe during the preview party. Several craft show vendors donated an item to be auctioned off online to benefit the museum. The auction runs until Tuesday and can be found here.

P.S. Happy Veterans Day, and thank you Vets!!