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From New Hampshire to the Walterboro Farmers Market

“She’s so creative, we call her the Martha Stewart of the museum,” Colleton County Museum Director Gary Brightwell said Friday.

She was referring to museum Events Coordinator Jill Chadwick, who was a volunteer with the museum before being named to that position. Jill moved to Walterboro with her husband, Stephen, five years ago. Stephen had retired after working for 31 years at a building supply store in New Hampshire. Jill had also been involved in the building industry, working at the Home Depot before moving to Walterboro.

She noted that she and her husband met when she was just 17 years old. “He’s been doing this (working with wood) forever. He built me a replica of an antique cupboard we had seen at an antiques show in Concord, New Hampshire,” Jill said. She added that Stephen has always been handy at the art of woodwork. “A couple of years ago, we had that big ice storm that brought all the branches down, and he got the idea of making twig furniture. He still makes the small stools, which sell very well.” She added that Stephen also sells wooden planters and other works of art.

Jill sells the crafts she makes for her artistic venture she calls Chadwick Crafts at the Walterboro Farmers Market. On Saturdays from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m., she sells handcrafted and hand painted pillows, purses, slippers, purses, tops (in limited sizes), knitted face cloths, and glass alphabet letter refrigerator magnets. “It seems as if I’ve been sewing forever, ever since I was able to hold a needle. I even made my own doll clothes, she said, adding, I sell the magnets so people can spell out things on metal surfaces.”

She noted that while they were living in New Hampshire, Stephen built a post-and-beam addition to their house, which was featured in the magazine “Better Homes and gardens” after its completion. “The magazine’s field editor house in our town,” Jill said.

The couple also restored a lake house in New Hampshire. “We restored it all by ourselves. It’s a wonderful, beautiful house that looked kind of creepy at first. It was built in 1900 and it was built with flint rock that looked like dinosaur bones. We built a great fireplace with those stones,” Jill said. “After the remodeling, it was a wonderful, beautiful house.”

How Stephen and Jill came to Walterboro to living is an interesting story. “I found the house I was looking for on the internet. It’s a historical house with a big front porch on Black Street. We then contacted the Walterboro-Colleton Chamber of Commerce and got more information about Walterboro, and once we found out more about the town, we moved down here. We just love it here. The people are just lovely, and it’s just a wonderful thing.”

Concerning her employment with the museum, Jill said she enjoys doing the front window displays and she also works well with Gary Brightwell. “Gary and I feed off one another by exchanging ideas. It’s nice.”