When provided with access to markets, space, peers, workforce, guidance, and capital, creative entrepreneurs grow into creative businesses that deliver vital economic development for urban and rural communities.

Powered by entrepneruial makers, designer, craftspeople, designers, and small-batch manufacturers, Pennsylvania’s creative businesses to contribute to statewide equitable economic growth. Strong and successful creative businesses emerge as effective allies in KACE’s efforts to make Pennsylvania a thriving region for all. They create jobs, reactivate post-industrial spaces, and bring business activity to disinvested communities in need of new and innovative economic activity. Explore the profiles below to learn more about creative entrepneurs growing strong and impactful enterprises across the Commonwealth.

Threet CeramicsLovett Sundries Lake Erie WoodworksLobo Mau Sha’Lari Couture | Edgewood Made

"We're excited to learn more about how makers from across the state grow, and how they build the skills and confidence to make it happen."

Jeff Lovett Co-owner | Lovett Sundries

Threet Ceramics

Philadelphia, PA

Stefani Threet

Stefani Threet is the creative spirit of Threet Ceramics. Her aesthetic is bright, colorful, and organic. Her wares are primarily functional including coffee mugs, small dishes, vases, salt and pepper shakers. She studied ceramics at Alfred University but took her first pottery class at Fleisher Art Memorial in South Philly. Stefani’s design concepts began years ago as doodles on napkins and scraps of paper. Stefani’s ceramic works echo those doodles and features concentric circle designs inspired heavily by music. She hopes that everyone enjoys the work, and the meaning behind it.

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Lovett Sundries

Wilkinsburg, PA

Jeff Lovett and Marit Aagaard

Marit Aagaard and Jeff Lovett started crafting soaps with pure ingredients using household equipment in their home kitchen. The extreme popularity of the soaps among family and friends led to the creation of Lovett Sundries in 2015, and they released a line of body soap, shampoo, dishwashing powder, and laundry soap. With distribution to retail shops in Pittsburgh and around the country, and a busy online store, Lovett Sundries became a full-scale operation. Lovett Sundries crafts, ships, and sells all their products from their integrated production facility and retail shop in a converted hardware store in downtown Wilkinsburg, PA.



"I have a vision for expanding my creative business, and I learn so much from the lesson learned and best practices of my peers."

Shannon Richardson Owner & Designer | Sha’Lari Couture

Lake Erie Woodworks

Erie, PA

Armando Reyes

Armando Reyes learned the craft of woodworking from his grandfather, father, and uncles at an early age. He believes that Lake Erie Woodworks is a resource for anyone along their woodworking journey. Whether they need a custom-built piece for their home, are just beginning to learn technique and skills, or need woodworking supplies and materials. The designs from Lake Erie Woodworks are rooted in tradition and quality. Armando’s works in wood are timeless and made from sustainability and/or locally sourced materials. Armando has invested in tools and machinery that allow him to be as efficient and accurate as possible in his growth.

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Lobo Mau

Philadelphia, PA

Nicole Haddad and Jordan Haddad

Lobo Mau is a brother/sister clothing line specializing in innovative textile design. Rooted in slow fashion values, Lobo Mau is a zero-waste company that produces with local factories and silkscreens its original textiles in-house with careful consideration of its social and environmental impact on the world. After being named Philadelphia Magazine’s Best Sustainable Local Brand in 2019, Lobo Mau took this momentum to open its flagship store in Queen Village, Philadelphia, carrying other like-minded designers and furthering the brand’s slow fashion ethos.

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“I feel like I'm in the right place to move the business forward and I'm excited to see how we can collaborate to make that happen.”

Armando Reyes Owner & Craftsperson | Lake Erie Woodworks

Sha’Lari Couture

McKees Rocks, PA

Shannon Richardson

Fashion designer and entrepreneur Shannon Richardson has crafted handbags and accessories for over a decade. Shannon’s hobby of making fabric tote bags for family and friends blossomed when a unique, custom diaper bag concept became wildly successful on her online Etsy shop. Her bags are now made to order and shipped to 47 states and 6 countries. With a range of styles, colors, shapes, and sizes each piece is completely unique, sometimes featuring rough leather edges and ranch brandings for added character. Geared toward creative, fashion-forward city professionals, Sha’Lari Couture bags marry function with stylish hardware.

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Edgewood Made

Philadelphia, PA

David Short and George Dubinsky

Founded by David Short and George Dubinsky in 2013, Edgewood Made is a design and fabrication company based out of Philadelphia, PA. From ceramic pitchers to oak dressers to site-specific millwork, their goal is to design for every aspect of the home. Edgewood Made’s products and services include their own brand of furniture, home goods, and custom interiors. They also execute a wide variety of original projects that draw on their design vision and craftsmanship to provide services to architects and interior designers.

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