Stu­dents sold handmade items like these cup­cakes at the Makers Market on Sat­urday.

Homemade fet­tuccine, wood­burned ear­rings, and street poetry all graced the plaza of the Chapel on Sat­urday Sept. 19th. Live music, including classic rock favorites and soft pop, was the idyllic back­ground music for many stu­dents casually perusing each stand. 

It’s no sur­prise that several stands, both for stu­dents and com­munity members alike,  were empty by the end of the annual Makers Market, hosted by the Student Activ­ities Board.

And though there are many stories to tell — there were 19 stands fea­tured at the Market — ”Quotes and Notes,” Wildfire Pyrog­raphy,” and “The Oven Ranch” were a few of our favorites. 

The Christ Chapel plaza hosted the Market.
Andrew Dixon | Col­legian

Wildfire Pyrog­raphy

For junior Kyla Schnell, the vendor and owner of “Wildfire Pyrog­raphy,” inspi­ration came from the unex­pected and lengthy quar­antine. 

“I left school a week before spring break,” Schnell said. “I bought this wood burning pen and thought to myself, ‘well now I’ve got some time, might as well learn how to use it. Ear­rings are easy and I can sell them for a price that college stu­dents could afford.’ And then COVID hit and I was home for more than two weeks. So that was that. ” 

Ear­rings and dec­o­rated wood boards became her spe­cialty, and though she couldn’t sell them at the scheduled Maker’s Market last spring, Schnell says that this year’s market Maker’s Market was more suc­cessful than she had hoped. 

“I got a couple custom orders,” she said. “The process is kind of cathartic, and I enjoy it, so I hope to con­tinue.” 

Pyrog­raphy, the tech­nical term for wood burning is simple, she con­tinued. She grabs her wood­burning pen, com­plete with inter­changeable metal tips, and free hands each of her projects. Ear­rings take 20 to 40 minutes, whereas her wood boards can take several

hours. Each board has a unique design, such as a lake scene or a board inscribed with a Bible verse. 

“I loved seeing everybody’s hidden talents and cre­ative outlets,” said Schnell in regard to many of her fellow vendors. “It’s so inter­esting to see that reflected in other stu­dents in dif­ferent ways.”

Schnell noted that she par­tic­u­larly found delight in the fact that she got to showcase herself to people she usually does not interact with, making many new friends in the process. She advised SAB, however, to extend the timespan of the event to accom­modate people who work at the same time or cannot attend at the given time. 

The Oven Ranch

The prepa­ration for “The Oven Ranch” almost became an all-nighter. Cup­cakes popped into the oven at mid­night, and sopho­mores Tracy Wilson and Maggie Hroncich were up at five am to ice flowers on all their cup­cakes.

“We were in a rush to finish them, and it was stressful,” Wilson said. “I felt like I was on ‘Chopped.’’’ 

And yet, she still coins it as one of her most mem­o­rable college expe­ri­ences. After working at a frozen yogurt shop last summer, she con­tinued, she learned how to ice frozen yogurt cakes. Later on in the summer, Wilson made a birthday cake for her and her mom.  

That was my first time using actual icing and it was just so much fun,” Wilson said. “I got so much expe­rience from my work with the dif­ferent icing tips you could use.”

When the Maker’s Market flyers went out, Wilson imme­di­ately invited her best friend and roommate, Hroncich, to create the hand-dec­o­rated cup­cakes. The name, Wilson said, is the genius of Hroncich. “She said that growing up, she always had a dream to open a bakery and that was her dream name for that,” Wilson said. 

Hroncich and Wilson said the sense of com­munity among the vendors were what they most enjoyed about the Market. 

“If you have some sort of talent that you can turn into some­thing mar­ketable, this is the place for you,” Wilson said. “I wouldn’t do it again from a profit stand­point, but it was really mem­o­rable, and it’ll be nice to look back on ‘the time I made 200 cup­cakes at 2 a.m. the morning.’”

Quotes and Notes

If anyone walked into sophomore Rachel Warren’s room, they’d notice cal­lig­raphy posters scat­tered all over the walls. This year, though, Warren decided to share her knack for cal­lig­raphy with Hillsdale. 

“For another person to have just a piece of paper with cal­lig­raphy doesn’t mean as much, so I decided to put it on cards,” Warren said. “It tied in that beau­tiful art aspect that I was trying to put into it but also the prac­tical aspect that I wanted to share with people as well.”

“Quotes and Notes” fea­tured water­color cal­lig­raphy cards as well as jewelry holders, some­thing Warren developed during quar­antine. Her dri­veway and garage became her studio. 

“I started by just buying a couple long wood boards,” Warren said. “I picked how long I wanted them to be, I sawed them that size, I stained them, and then I added the little hooks and screwed those in at the bottom. After they dried, I used sharpie and some paint to add some words to it.” 

Because mostly women grav­itate toward jewelry holders, Warren said she painted Bible verses that high­light a woman’s fem­i­ninity.   

The atmos­phere, Warren said, was casual, inviting, and the perfect place for her first time as a vendor. She also said the relaxed envi­ronment and the stu­dents sup­porting each other was the deciding factor for her fun time at the Market. She encouraged potential future vendors not to worry.

 “Whatever you enjoy making, someone will enjoy buying it,” she said.