Caroline Dengel | The Fashionista
Last year, 20-something Caroline Dengel launched Cleveland's first boutique-on-wheels to cater to Cleveland's busy but fashion-forward women. About the size of a small food truck, the Wandering Wardrobe, affectionately nicknamed "Wanda," has since been spotted all around town, sporting racks of flirty dresses, chic tops and designer bags, as well as select resale items, all artfully arranged to maximize space and keep shoppers from feeling cramped. Her mobile venture was so successful, in part from Dengel's clever social media campaigns — "Follow Wanda!," "Find the truck!" she'd post on Instagram and Facebook — that Dengel opened a brick-and-mortar, or rather, steel-and-bolts storefront in November in a converted 160-square-foot shipping container. Stop in to see her new digs on West Sixth and St. Clair in Cleveland's Warehouse District, and, of course, follow Wanda on social media to see where she's parking next.
Cathy Strauss & Shari Escott | The Paper Cutters
Longtime friends and crafters Cathy Strauss and Shari Escott began their vintage paper art business, Paper Cutz, just over a year ago and have already developed a dedicated band of followers (ourselves included) who just can't get enough of their cleverly crafted cards and frameable prints. Made almost exclusively from recycled products like old Cleveland maps, advertisements, newspapers, and even a few old issues of Scene, the Paper Cutz crew meticulously pieces together vintage scraps to create one-of-a-kind replicas of the Cleveland skyline, the Rock Hall, the West Side Market, and plenty of other local icons. Browse their selection of unique prints on Etsy (etsy.com/shop/PAPERCUTZOHIO).
Paul Fisher | The Apothecary
Paul Fisher, 27, is burly, bearded and covered in tattoos. He also makes a damn good skin care line. His small startup, 419 Trading Co., is based out of Wapakoneta, Ohio, but he makes appearances locally at the Cleveland Flea, offering shoppers a line of high-quality personal hygiene products, including soaps, lotions, lip balms and beard oils. His soy lotion ($10), loaded with aloe vera and Vitamin E, is a favorite of ours, though his soy candles, which come in fragrances such as Bourbon and Tobacco, Fresh Brewed Coffee, and Fig and Oak, have caught our eye as well ($15). Browse Fisher's full selection at 419tradingco.com, and give him a good ol' fashioned Instagram follow (@paul419trading) where you'll find his latest products and plenty of photos of his beard.
Anne Harrill | The Metal Maven
Hailing from southern France, jewelry designer Anne Harrill came to Cleveland in 2002 where she launched Oceanne, a line of nature-inspired body accessories for the everyday fashionista. Made with raw and recycled metals, as well as sterling silver and 16-carat gold, no two pieces of Harrill's jewelry are alike as each item is hand stamped, filed and molded in her Cleveland studio. We're particularly fond of her Heishis collection, which features chunky brass bases with coral and turquoise accents. Need something custom made? Harrill will work with your budget and timeline to create a look you'll love. Peruse her entire line at oceanne.net and keep an eye out for her booth at an upcoming Cleveland Flea.
Vinny & Cindy Tirpak | The Blast Masters
Every local household needs a stash of Cleveland beer glasses, and duo Vinny and Cindy Tirpak make a mean set. At Blastmaster, all glassware is sandblasted, then detailed with a unique design — your embarrassing college nickname, for instance. Aside from beer glasses, the Blast Masters say they can blast pretty much anything (a boundary we're sorely tempted to test). Take a peek at their selection online at blastmaster62.net or at a handful of local stores, including Native Cleveland, CLE Clothing Co., and Salty Not Sweet.