Ed Pribyl American Folk Art

American Made Since 2008

Ed Pribyl

Round Lake, Illinois
One-of-a-kind, hand carved wood folk art figures crafted in the American tradition. Carvings range from historical to curiously odd.

Tell us about your business.

I've always been drawn to things that show signs of wear, things with a history, things that have a story behind them. As an artist, my goal is to create every piece as though it were handed down from another period in time. I enjoy woodcarving because I am able to draw on my experience as a woodworker as well as a painter. My influences stem from all areas of early Americana; old dolls, worn furniture, toys, and of course figure carvings. Every piece is hand carved from basswood then painted using a unique, multi-layered antiqued finish. While there is an emphasis on detail that was not typical of most Early American carvings, I try to evoke the warmth and soul which made those pieces so special.

What makes your business stand out?

I create custom pieces based on my customer's needs. Each piece is hand carved and takes days to weeks to complete. The range of subjects that I carve is unique and keeps my job fresh and exciting. My ideas come from all over; many of my customers inspire me with their ideas to add to their collections. I've carved a series of classic movie monsters, circus side show performers, vintage magicians, and literary characters. Most pieces I create spark yet another idea for a carving in the future. There isn't anything I wouldn't consider carving.

What's the best business advice you've received?

Make sure your wife has a job with insurance.

Mark Your Calendar

  • Nominations
    June 3–Aug. 29, 2014

    Nominate yourself or other aspiring makers.

  • Judging
    June 23–Sept. 8, 2014

    Judges will select finalists throughout this period.

  • Online Voting
    Sept. 15–Oct. 13, 2014

    Vote for your favorite American makers.

  • Winners Announced
    Oct. 17, 2014

    2014 Award Winners and Audience Choice Winner announced.

  • American Made Event
    Nov. 7–8, 2014

    Join us for our annual event in New York City.

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