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Treasures Etc. in Nitro features the work of state artisans

The artworks and crafts of West Virginia artists are featured at Treasures Etc., a shop that opened about a year ago at 6 Bank St. in Nitro.

Owner Geri Crago said about 10 state artists are currently represented at Treasures Etc. Their work includes woodwork, crafts and jewelry.

"We have two different artists who do jewelry, and we have a lady that makes dolls - she lives in St. Albans," Crago said.

Shoppers can also find collectibles and "primitives," glassware and even a few antiques at Treasures Etc.

Jaime Absten of Hurricane sells her decorative signs at Treasures Etc. Absten uses salvaged wood to make her signs that feature popular sayings, quotations and Bible verses.

"I use reclaimed wood; I recycle pallets and turn them into signs with quotes and typography. I love typography, and I love quotes," Absten said.

Absten said she has always been attracted to decorative signs in various shops that she would visit.

"I gravitated toward them in the stores, and I just decided that I didn't want to pay the money for them and that I could make them, so I started making them."

Absten is always on the lookout for scrap wood. She uses old barn wood and wood from construction jobs.

"I'll stop along the road and pick it up; anything that I can find that I can turn into signs. I really like working with the old pallets, because the rough-cut lumber really stains well and is really pretty. I stain everything and then paint them," she said.

For the lettering, Absten cuts out her own stencils.

"I use an Xacto knife, and I cut out the stencils by hand."

By using Facebook and a Website called Etsy, Absten has created a nationwide following for her handmade signs. Etsy (www.etsy.com) is a site for artisans who specialize in handmade products and crafts.

"It's a community of artisans and crafters," she said.

Through her Web-based sales, Absten has customers from as far away as California, Texas, Colorado and Washington.

Her first out-of-state customer lives in Nevada.

"That was my very first one, and I was so excited."

Crago said Treasures Etc. also has a Facebook site, and she encourages customers to visit it.

Facebook "really helps me," Crago said.

Treasures Etc. is also having an open house from 1 to 5 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 8. The open house is the same day as the City of Nitro's Christmas parade and other holiday events. There will be refreshments and door prizes.

Treasures Etc. is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday and from 1 to 5 p.m. on Sunday.

For more information, call 304-755-3848 or visit Treasures Etc. on Facebook.


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