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Lilly Cihlar and Amy Austad LaBott of Door County Hardware

Door County Hardware Sells Local Teenager’s Creations

When an employee at Door County Hardware started creating her own sculpture pieces, owner Amy Austad LaBott knew they would be a great addition to the store’s outdoor department.

15-year-old Lilly Cihlar took welding classes at her high school and loved them so much that her parents bought her a plasma cutter so she could make her own pieces at home.

LaBott saw some of Cihlar’s pieces on display at a local restaurant and in the Cihlar family’s yard and asked her about selling them in the store.

“The pieces she sells are all original and completely unique. She has not made two of anything alike,” LaBott says. “I think her pieces really complement our outdoor decor section, and it is nice to have some original pieces in the store.”

LaBott does not take a cut from the sale of any of Cihlar’s art pieces.

Selling her art in the store is allowing Cihlar to save money for college.

“Lilly has also used some of the money from her artwork sales to buy her first car, a black Volkswagen Beetle,” LaBott says. “It fits her perfectly.”

Read more Checkout stories about local artisans here, including how Vickery Ace Hardware supports its local artisan community, how Lloyd’s True Value supports local vendors and a Hardware Hank store in Minden, NE is the exclusive seller of a locally produced card game, SomeRset.

About Lindsey Thompson

Lindsey joined the NHPA staff in 2021 as an associate editor for Hardware Retailing magazine. A native of Ohio, Lindsey earned a B.S. in journalism and minors in business and sociology from Ohio University. She loves spending time with her husband, two kids, two cats and one dog, as well as doing DIY projects around the house, going to concerts, boating and cheering on the Cleveland Indians.

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