Featured Artisans

The Whistling Swan has several artisans represented in the shop who have had their work featured in various magazines...Susan Soloway Daul, Greg Shooner and Mary-Spellmire Shooner, John and Cathy Schneeman, Robert Allio, Jim DeCurtis, Peggy Teich Hooked Rugs…all are made by American artisans, one at a time, never mass produced.

Please read about a few of the artisans featured at the Whistling Swan below.

You can also view the complete list of Artisans Represented in Whistling Swan.

Susan Soloway Daul

Susan, who grew up in the woodlands of New Jersey has been drawing and painting since her early childhood. She graduated from Meredith College and now lives in the countryside of North Carolina where she enjoys creating her folk art. Susan's folk art has taken many forms over the past 20 years, as she has used various media including wood and clay, usually incorporating animals into her pieces in some way.

It was a natural progression for Susan's focus to fall on Fraktur, as their inspirational verses, charming use of animals and beautiful combinations of color proved irresistible from the first time she saw one. Initially given as gifts to special friends and family, Susan's appreciation for her Fraktur has spread far and wide, finding their place in various museum shops throughout the county, including Colonial Williamsburg, The American Folk Art Museum, and the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Susan's creations have been recognized in Early American Life magazine's Directory of Craftsmen since 1994 and she was awarded "Best of Show" honors in the first Mount Vernon Crafts Fair. Susan was commissioned to design original Fraktur for Old Salem's Museum of Early Southern Decorative Art as well as an exclusive design for Early American Life magazine. Susan's work was chosen to be displayed solo at the American Folk Art Museum Shop. Most recently Susan's work was featured in Early American Life magazine in the March/April 2005 issue. She was noted in the article as a "top echelon" fraktur artist.

Connie Krizner

Over 18 years ago, inspired by her own collection of antique Santa's, Connie began making Santa's one at a time by hand. No two will ever be exactly alike and each one is signed and dated.

Connie spends a great deal of time and effort achieving the right expressions on their hand-painted faces that are poured in molds that she makes. She searches for trims, fabrics, and other accessories that are so characteristic of her style.

Connie has achieved a process of aging her Santa's to look as if they are 100 years old. These Santa's blend beautifully in a collection of antique ones.

Through the years Connie has expanded to all seasons, again inspired by antique pieces and giving each one her special talent to detail and aging.

John and Cathy Schneeman

John, Kentucky artisan, forges a fulfilling family business reviving a centuries old tradition of crafting with metal. He started with making cookie cutters and tin toys. Now he concentrates almost exclusively on crafting period-inspired lighting. Sconces modeled on one from George Washington's bivouac at Valley Forge and chandeliers used in early 19th century whaling ships are 2 such popular designs. Cathy scratches a pattern on electroplated tin and cuts a form, following one of the templates John designed or adapted from old books. Once cut John forms the metal into proper shape using a variety of tools including an 1886 folding machine and old-fashioned tin snips. Cathy paints and finishes - a ten-step process.

Country Home magazine, September 2000, featured the Schneemans and some of their work.

202 South Main Street     P.O. Box 135     Davidson, NC 28036     (704) 896-8559