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2019 Winners


The Credenza-Za by WDesign Studio

The product: The Credenza-Za 

Where it was crafted: Hardeeville

What makes it great: This stylish and functional piece is an original design by William De Torre. It is truly one of a kind, made almost entirely of re-claimed barn wood (black walnut and spalted maple) that was sourced locally in Levy. The doors track all the way around to the back and appear to be floating. The tambour doors and solid walnut dovetailed drawers have shark fin pulls. “We think from our search online that the solid wood, wave wall and tambour doors have never been done before,” De Torre said. “Creating anything truly unique is very difficult.”

Judging notes: “I’ve never seen anything like it — the tooling, the rolling of the wood, the ingenuity, the craftsmanship. (De Torre) nailed it, from the inside out. He started with rough wood and transformed it into a smooth, wavy, amazing piece. It’s really incredible.” — Kelly Caron, Kelly Caron Designs

Find it: 843-816-6162, wdesignstudiolighting.com


Sprout Momma

The product: Sprout Momma Breads

Where it was crafted: Hilton Head Island

What makes it great: These artisan breads are made from select ingredients, such as King Arthur organic flour and super sprouted flour from Lindley Mills. Sprouting greatly enhances the nutrition and digestibility of wheat. Many other ingredients come from their garden and local farmers. The bakery is owned and operated by Kim Tavino and her children, Abby and Ryan. The family was born and raised in the Lowcountry. “We handcraft all of our bread with love,” Tavino said. “The Lowcountry runs in our blood.”

Judging notes: “To start, the bamboo charcoal bread is really an aesthetic treat, from the deep brown crust into the gorgeous chewy black bread underneath. Not surprisingly, it has an earthy, almost nutty flavor that pairs perfectly with a good quality butter or a tangy fruity jam. Overall, this is a truly artisan product made with care and pride that is typical of our friends at Sprout Momma.” — Lloyd Alberson, Old Oyster Factory

Find it: Farmers Market of Bluffton, Port Royal Farmers Market, The Market at Village at Wexford, local restaurants, 843-715-2649, sproutmomma.com


Island Indigo

The product: Indigo dyed 100% silk scarves

Where it was crafted: Lady’s Island

What makes it great: Island Indigo textiles are individually designed, intricately bound and hand-dyed in a natural indigo vat on Lady’s Island. Each piece is unique. The mother-daughter team draws inspiration from the surrounding water and from local historical heroine Eliza Pinckney (1722-1739), who perfected the intricate process of extracting potent blue dye from the green leaves of the indigo plant. The project is a creative outlet and brings purpose and joy to the mother, Lydia Beason, who continues her battle with brain cancer. A portion of each sale is donated to brain cancer research.

Judging notes: “Of all the unique items in my category, this one screamed ‘Crafted in the Lowcountry’ the most. The making of the dyes and the manipulation of natural fibers create intricate designs that are all one of a kind. The thought and imagination that Lydia puts into each creation touches my heart, and the many whom benefit from her charity.” — Roxanne Gilleland, Shop!

Find it: IslandIndigoGals@Etsy.com


Hilton Head Distillery

The product: Mountain Peak Espresso Flavored Rum

Where it was crafted: Hilton Head Island

What makes it great: Created from pure molasses and real, fresh-roasted coffee, this spirit is the perfect marriage between West-Indies-style rum and robust espresso. Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee beans are some of the rarest and most desired in the world. To create this drink, the team at Hilton Head Distillery hand steeps the beans in its Platinum White Rum, resulting in bright, bold espresso flavor with a subtle creamy sweetness. It’s the perfect rum for coffee lovers. “We use cloud-sourced​ alkaline water to proof down the spirit to 40 percent alcohol (80 proof), giving it a smooth mouthfeel and unbeatable drinkability,” distiller Peter Thompson said.

Judging notes: “The winning entry needed to demonstrate excellence in five characteristics: appearance, aroma, body, taste and finish. Additionally, the winner should showcase the creativity and exceptional craft we have come to expect in the Lowcountry. While all of the entries did their creators proud, the Mountain Peak Espresso Rum from Hilton Head Distillery rated highest in virtually every category.” — Terry Cermak, Rollers Wine & Spirit

Find it: Most liquor stores, hiltonheaddistillery.com


Wild Wood Rescue and Designs

The product: Driftwood cheese board/serving tray

Where it was crafted: Bluffton

What makes it great: This unique serving tray is made with locally harvested driftwood. It has a metallic blue inlay, where a wormhole tunnel used to be and Lichtenberg figures made with 12,000 volts of electricity that resembles lightning. The handles are also driftwood that were shaped into the piece. “It’s wherever my imagination takes me when I look at a piece of wood,” Roberto Rodriguez said. “Ninety percent of the wood I find has potential.”

Judging notes: “The work of Roberto Rodriguez incorporates all of the elements of the Lowcountry that draw people to this area. He uses locally found materials and manipulates those materials to create beautiful, organic yet functional pieces. His cheese tray is beautiful and interesting to look at, yet functional. His craftsmanship is superb. I could envision this piece in any of the homes in the Lowcountry. His story is also one that is familiar to many that have relocated to this area. The natural beauty of the area and the low key lifestyle enjoyed by so many is reflected in his work.” — Wendy White, Pyramids Home Store

Find it: Palmetto Bluff Provisions, wildwoodrescue.com


Julie Jones artwork

Where it was crafted: Hilton Head Plantation

What makes it great: Jones is a native of Hilton Head Island. Her love of the island shows through in her colorful, oversized art. Her most notable works include oysters, marshscapes and marine life. “My works represent the vibrancy of our island environment through subject, color, style and form,” Jones said. “I love to paint and I love where I live. The two have come together harmoniously.”

Judging notes: “I was impressed with the artist’s approach to light on water, which is difficult to master. Given Julie’s background, born and raised in the Lowcountry, her art is ideal for our little part of the world. We enjoy a very robust art community, visual and performing. It’s nice to recognize an artist that is home grown.” — Ben Whiteside, The Red Piano Art Gallery

Find it: Copper Penny, So Sandra, Etsy, juliejonesartwork.com


View all 2019 entries here