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Green girl stuck on duct tape art

6/20/2013 - South Side Leader
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By Maria Lindsay

Sarah is pictured in front of her craft table with Michelle Lesniak Franklin, the recent winner of “Project Runway” season 11, who served as a celebrity guest judge at the event. On the TV program, Franklin won a duct-tape design challenge, creating a prom dress with the product.
Sarah Sample is shown wearing her purple retro owls dress, shoes and the headband she made for a fashion show at the Avon Heritage Duct Tape Festival last weekend.
Photos courtesy of Laura Sample
GREEN — Ten-year-old Sarah Sample’s favorite subject at Green Intermediate School is art class.

“I like art because I can make creative things, and that is fun to do,” she said.

So when her aunt Missy Sample, of Ravenna, last year showed her a purse she had made of duct tape, she was intrigued. Her aunt gave her the purse, and Sarah became stuck on creating things using Duck Tape® brand duct tape for art.

According to the Duck Tape® website, www.duckbrand.com, duct tape was created to fill a need for a strong, flexible, durable, waterproof tape that could seal canisters, repair cracked windows, repair trucks and help the war effort in general during World War II. The resulting product was nicknamed “Duck Tape” for its ability to repel water while ripping easily into strips for fast, convenient use. After the war, the tape was put to the more civilian use of holding ducts together, so the product changed from a nameless army green to the familiar gray. Today, Duck Tape® brand duct tape is sold in more than 50 different patterns and colors and has spawned more creative uses, according to the website.

“I like duct tape art because it is different,” said Sarah.

Her mother said Sarah, who is going into fifth grade, learned to make things by trial and error and through online tutorials. Sarah’s grandmother, Jean Reymann, of Firestone Park, looks for and buys interesting duct tape patterns for Sarah, who has created various kinds of wallets, bracelets, flowers, jewelry, bows, two dresses, a matching vest and skirt and hats. Sarah said she has made items for friends, jewelry for an aunt, end-of-the-year teacher gifts and a purse for her mother on Mother’s Day.

Sarah said her favorite Duck Tape® pattern is “Stickable Me,” which is based on the Disney movie “Despicable Me.” She added she wears some of her own creations, including a sun hat, and her favorite creation is a woman’s wallet she made with a Duck Tape® brand logo.

“It took me awhile to make,” she said. “It’s special because I know if I can make that, I can make anything.”

Sarah’s interest in creating duct tape items was noticed by Duck Tape® officials at a show at Cleveland’s I-X Center this past November.

“The Duck Tape® people were very excited over her enthusiasm for duct tape crafts, and they invited Sarah to participate in the 10th annual Avon Heritage Duct Tape Festival June 14-16 in Avon,” said Laura Sample.

Avon is home to Duck Tape® brand duct tape. The city’s three-day festival, started in 2003, celebrates duct tape, its enthusiasts and its wacky and fun uses, and includes a fashion show, exhibitors displaying their duct tape creations, games and a parade of duct tape floats, according to the city’s website.

Sarah’s booth displayed about 100 duct tape wallets of various designs, as well as flowers and jewelry also made of duct tape, and she got to take a tour of the Duck Tape® factory.

“I sold my products at the show, and I was a part of the fashion show wearing my retro dress, which is purple on top, with a skirt of owls,” said Sarah. “This one-piece took me five or six hours, using fabric and sticking duct tape to it.”

Sarah said she also got to meet some of the older girls at the show and learn something from them.

“It was a really cool experience, and I want to do it again next year,” she said. “I want to make more things, but I have to learn how.”

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