To celebrate 75 years of creativity at the 2016 CHA MEGA Conference & Trade Show, we are sharing our members’ stories of how they made their mark in the history of our industry.
Master silversmith and mixed media artist Susan Lenart Kazmer developed a jeweler’s grade resin for the use in art jewelry in 2006. She brought it to market in 2007 and sold out of her new signature product in less than an hour. Today, artists and professional jewelers from all over the world use ICE Resin® to create their unique art pieces because of its crystal clear and glasslike finish.
How long have you been a CHA Member?
My company, Susan Lenart Kazmer ICE Resin®, has been a member of CHA since 2010.
It’s been very eye opening for me to see the big business of crafts and the opportunity to work with so many different levels of people in one place. Through CHA, I’ve been able to work with designers, sales reps, buyers, independent store owners, industry consultants, CEOs and presidents of other companies, as well as various CHA staff members. Exhibiting and teaching at the CHA MEGA Conference & Trade Show has definitely helped grow my company into a much larger organization. The networking and authentic connections I’ve made from the annual Shows has contributed to my company’s success.
Why do you love attending the CHA MEGA Show?
I’ve had the opportunity to teach my products, demo my products and connect with people both in the United States and internationally, year after year. This has helped me grow a truly global business. I look forward every year to personally reconnecting with the people who are moving and shaking, and getting products manufactured and sold in the industry. I’m really excited about this new opportunity of working hand-in-hand with Ranger Industries to debut my new product line of really exciting pieces, parts and elements that work with ICE Resin®. I think the artists and makers are going to love the new ideas and looks they are going to be able to do with ICE Resin®.
What is your most memorable CHA Show story?
One of the most rewarding parts of the CHA MEGA Show is, with the addition of the artisan workshops, I’ve been able to bring my studio style of teaching that I’ve done nationally and internationally for the past 15 years into the craft industry workshop format. It’s been so impressive for me to see my students grow in their ICE Resin® work year after year. They wear their jewelry to the Show, they bring it to my classes and they show up at our booth excited to share their passion for our products. I love it.
One of the other memorable parts of the Show every year is that I always get to connect in person with many members of my design team. We always go to Buco di Beppo for a team building dinner where we just relax, have fun, and enjoy each other’s company. It’s a tradition to wear fake mustaches when we walk into the restaurant and to share them with our waiters. One year, we even had a little extra fun going ‘stash crazy’ in the Pope room. We returned the next year only to have the same waiter still sporting his mustache on his leather order-taking book, so it must have been memorable for him too. It’s nice to unwind after long and busy days of doing business on the Show floor.
Join us, Susan, ICE Resin® and Ranger Industries in the workshop, Transparent Text with Susan Lenart Kazmer, at the 2016 CHA MEGA Conference & Trade Show to celebrate the latest craft industry products and innovations.
Share your “Cheers to 75 Years” story and we’ll feature it on the CHA Blog leading up to the 2016 CHA MEGA Show! Email firstname.lastname@example.org, or share it on Twitter using the hashtag, #WeAreCHA.