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Erie Makes

Maker Videos 2022

Kenneth Bownes 

Kenneth started carving wooden spoons and other kitchen utensils about six years ago when he saw a video of a woodworker and thought he'd give it a try. The wood he uses comes from local trees in Erie near his home.  He makes all sorts of spoons, spatulas and even shoehorns. They are all different - no two come out the same as wood differs from branch to branch. Come see Kenneth demonstrate and learn more about spoon carving at Erie Makes on Saturday Nov. 12th at the Blasco Library. Can't make the demonstration? Check out Kenneth's maker video during the week of Erie Makes! You can check out Kenneth's work on his website or reach out to him and attend a meeting of the Erie Spoon Club by checking events on their Facebook page

Ansumana Gbembo 

Ansumana is a talented tailor from Sierra Leone. While living in a refugee camp in Guinea, he took a vocational course to learn the art of tailoring. In 2009, he relocated to Erie. He works with both African and Western fabrics to create outfits his clients will love. He mends clothes, creates garments, and teaches sewing lessons. You can reach him by phone at (814) 413-3694 or email at To learn more about his business visit his Facebook page

Ashley Pastore 

Ashley Pastore is an artist living and working in Erie, Pa. She received her Masters of Fine Art from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago with a focus in printmaking and new media. Recently, her work was displayed in a solo exhibition at the Erie Art Museum titled Everyday Monumental. Her work is on permanent display in Chicago’s Union Station and the Cleveland’s Downtown Hilton Hotel. She has shown  around the country in Chicago, Austin, Cleveland, Buffalo and Albuquerque. After receiving her graduate degree, she was hired as the print shop technician at the historical Ox Bow School of Art in Saugatuck, Michigan and has most recently taught at SUNY Fredonia in the printmaking department. Ashley is currently building a communal printshop and makerspace, Grounded Printshop, in Erie.

Grounded Printshop 

Grounded Printshop is an interdisciplinary, contemporary print and papermaking shop/ artist residency located in Erie. Their goal is to provide creative space to explore new ideas and perspectives.  They have drawer and cubby space as well as private studios and open unfinished areas to get messy and explore BIG ideas. For more information visit their website

Creating with Community Project

Meet Eric, Fredy and Steve, one of six teams working on the Creating with Community project. This project focuses on the implementation of community-engaged, art-centered social projects. Their project area is the 19th Street corridor, between Cherry Street on the west side of Erie to Parade Street on the east side of Erie. 

Maker Videos 2021

Lake Erie Woodworks

Lake Erie Woodworks is owned by Armando Reyes, a local craftsman who has been building furniture and wooden goods since 2008. He then created the Lake Erie School of Woodworking: a center for learning and advancing the art and craft of woodworking, based in Erie, PA. They offer classes and video workshops. Learn more about them on their website

David Sack 

A costume creator with a love of Star Wars, David has been vacuum forming and creating costumes for seven years. He volunteers his time with the 501st Legion, a group who dresses up in movie accurate Star Wars costumes for charity. His first and favorite costume is Agent Kallus, shown in the photo.


Meeting Groups 

Adrianne Hills

Adrianne is a wool spinner who found her love for the craft in 2013. Wool spinning is the art of using a wheel to twist wool into yarn. She uses the yarn she spins to knit; one of her favorite projects was a green vest that used some of her very first spun yarn. 



Meeting Groups 

Esther Ortiz

Esther loves making things with her hands and taught herself how to create piñatas. She makes traditional piñatas, but also makes piñatas of cartoon characters, wedding cakes, Air Jordan sneakers, avocados, lipstick, Mexican candy, popsicles... anything she can think of!  Esther is the only piñata maker in the region. For more information about Esther, visit her Erie Arts and Culture profile

Brandon Levesque 

Meet Brandon, a third generation pickler who has been making his own tangy pickles for five years. His favorite recipe is his spicy dill recipe. 

Scott O'Rourke

Scott is a maker with many interests but has recently delved into the art of cross stich and embroidery.  Its other interests include jewelry making and woodworking.