Featured News - Current News - Archived News - News Categories

Brockport farm opens shop in Kent driven by local artisans

by Kari Ashworth - News Editor
Tue, Nov 12th 2019 09:00 pm
Carpenter's Family Farm is opening a shop on Ridge Road West that features handmade goods. Farm and Fancy's grand opening will be Saturday, Nov. 16.
Carpenter's Family Farm is opening a shop on Ridge Road West that features handmade goods. Farm and Fancy's grand opening will be Saturday, Nov. 16.

Carpenter’s Family Farm is opening a complementary shop in Kent, New York, called Farm and Fancy. 

Carpenter’s, which was opened in 2015 by Tom and Debbie Carpenter, is home to animals rescued from “less-than-ideal circumstances.” According to Grace Bellanca, the store manager and event coordinator at Farm and Fancy, the farm has “gardens ripe with vegetables and herbs and sprawling land perfect for private events and furry friends such as goats, chickens and donkeys,” as well as a plethora of goat milk products sold under the name Goat Isle Soap.

Bellanca said Carpenter’s interest in homemade goods inspired the development of Farm and Fancy.

“The owner, Debbie, always had a passion for artisan-made goods and a dream to own a space where she could curate amazing locally made products and share them with the public,” Bellanca said. “Throughout the years, Goat Isle Soap has participated in a multitude of festivals and craft shows, meeting artists from all walks of life with a wide range of talents and specialties. Every artisan met told a story of how they came to be and had clearly cultivated a vision for their work. Their dedication and genuine love for what they do is what inspired Debbie to create Carpenter’s Farm and Fancy. Carefully named to represent a personal vision for the store, it is a creator’s collective where rustic meets elegance.”

The shop will feature 35 local artisans and add more participants overtime. Bellanca said the shop will have a wide variety of goods including “jewelry, tote bags, pottery, prints, bath and beauty products, greeting cards, clothing, home accents, seasonal décor, produce, plants, flowers and more.”

Kayla Stein, who is in charge of Vendor Relations at the shop, has been with Carpenter’s since the beginning. The Carpenters’ are Stein’s in-laws.

“When [the Carpenters] moved to Brockport a few years ago, I quickly fell in love with the idea of the family farm,” Stein said. “We instantly grew into a business of ‘Carpenter’s Family Farm’ and where our sister company Goat Isle Soap stemmed from. I had been involved as Sales and Marketing and when my mother in law, Debbie, said she wanted to build an empire — I held on for the ride! I had met so many amazing artists and talented creators while doing artisan shows and festivals that I felt passionately about taking on this new position.”

Stein said it was easy deciding who to bring into the shop, given how rich this area is with artisans.

“Honestly, choosing the vendors is not hard because our community is filled with insanely gifted and creative individuals,” Stein said. “The artisan community in Rochester is extremely supportive, accepting and inclusive. Our retail market has made it a mission to display vendors that have a story to tell through their product. We first want to ensure that the item is completely handmade and second, that is authentic and unique (something you just can’t live without!). We also wanted to ensure that all of our makers promote sustainability and use re-purposed and certifiably sourced materials when possible. When introducing a new vendor to the store, I consider all things ‘Farm’ and all things ‘Fancy!’”

One artisan who will be featured in the shop is Christopher Little, owner of Rituals in Metal and Stone Inc. 

“I’m looking forward to everyone seeing the wonderful work that’s gone into putting this wonderful gallery together,” Little wrote in a Facebook post. “Lots of amazing examples of the creativity being expressed by our local artists.”

Farm and Fancy will also offer sustainable packaging with its products. The shop will work within the Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) guidelines to be environmentally-friendly. 

“Our business believes in the power of all things natural, from the farm to the store,” Bellanca said. “We are working to stay within our sustainability goals by using SFI package wrapping and label claims, ensuring that products are certifiably sourced and include fibers that are non-controversial. We carry certain products made from the finest eco-friendly ingredients and repurposed materials. We receive so many benefits from natural resources; we try our best to preserve them.”

The location of Farm and Fancy, 14877 Ridge Road West, was chosen because of its position on the Niagara Wine Trail. 

“Debbie fell in love with the storefront as soon as she saw it and imagined all the possibilities we could accomplish once open,” Bellanca said. 

Farm and Fancy will host a variety of seasonal events and activities including “art exhibitions, wine tastings, food pairings, pop-up shops, DIY workshops and more.” Bellanca also said the shop intends to have goat’s on-site once its enclosure is finished, and soft drinks, such as coffee, will be served year round. Ice cream will also be available seasonally. 

“It was never the dream to own a typical retail shop but rather a space meant for discovery,” Bellanca said.

The grand opening for Farm and Fancy will be Saturday, Nov. 16, from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Cookies and cocoa will be served, and free activities for children will be available. For more information, you can visit its social media pages @carpentersfamilyfarm or visit its website at carpentersfamilyfarm.com. 

 

Photo of the Week

Taken by Marios Argitis:
Photo Editor

Author List