Cara Wade has been creating since her mom taught her to sew when she was 8 years old. Cara was raised in Anchorage, AK and loves exploring the outdoors, fishing, cross country skiing, hiking, backpacking, and running. After graduating high school, she attended The University of Montana and Montana State University where she graduated with a degree in clothing design. A funny turn of events landed her in theatre costume construction. Cara worked for various theatre companies in the lower 48 and landed in Ashland, Oregon at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. Her job was to work backstage during shows dressing actors, performing quick changes, and maintaining and repairing costumes. Due to the 3-month hiatus every season, she began to create puppets and stuffed animals and selling them during the holiday season. This is when Wade Handmade was born.
When Covid hit, Cara was in her 18th year at the festival, and suddenly didn’t have a clue what she was going to do. Not knowing when theatre would start back up again, she and her family made the decision to move back to Alaska. Cara loves to create “usable art” that makes people smile. Her “perfectly imperfect” puppets and animals are her own designs, and she makes them all one by one by hand. She uses secondhand sweaters and fabric for her animal creations.