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The Mountain Artisans Art & Craft
Shows started in Macon County in 1987. Only 8 artisans
exhibited at the first Christmas
show in Franklin. We never imagined that down the road, we were headed to the
wonderful Ramsey Center on the Western Carolina University in
Cullowhee, North Carolina!
It is just
a dream come true. As the years have flown by, more and more artisans
wanted a good place to sell their hand work and joined us.
So many of our craft businesses have been sent overseas
but there are no imports here. The southern craftsman is
alive and well in this area. Many of the heritage crafts are handed
down from the older generation. The quilting, pine needle baskets,
blacksmithing, clay art, folk dolls, corn shuck flowers, broom
corn brooms, carved spirit sticks, and primitive
furniture were inspired from Grand pa.
You will find it all here.
Art and Crafts Shows provide a
marketplace for customers and artisan to meet. It is an amazing
collection under one roof. You would have to visit 75 shows to
find what I have gathered at one place.
Cullowhee, North Carolina is home
to the Western Carolina University. On the campus is the Ramsey
Center arena that boasts 18,000 square feet of climate controlled
comfort for everyone. A great set up crew makes this big event
happen for me two times each year. Quaint Cullowhee Valley nestles off Highway 107
that runs up to Cashiers, North Carolina from Sylva. It is a
stop off the Southern
Highroads Trail. All around are big, soft mountains. A foot bridge crosses the Cullowhee Creek to get
to the show from the parking lot. It is peaceful to your soul to be here.
Every year, I run the wheels off my little car
visiting many of the areas craft shows (sometimes three a day!) to find these unique artisans. I hand out information and get to know as many
as possible . Not every craft is right for this area but I feel
confident each exhibitor selected is outstanding in their field.
Spring is Here !
Get ready, get ready, get ready for the 24th "Summertime" Arts and Crafts Show!
this show, 99% of the artists are in the
building's main arena but a few exhibitors prefer to be outside.
The sidewalk leading up to the big Catamount door entrance
has a sample
of the quality artisans inside. Look for:
- Doreyl Ammons, demonstrating pastel painting. She is preparing for
a showing at the Jackson County Library July 1-31 called "On
Hallowed Ground". Some of her art will be at her booth as well as
her butterfly collection and other prints.
- Felicity Pierson is new
talent in oil painting .She will present original canvases
and prints .
- Everyone's favorite canvas hat and
accessory maker, is Jan Kleinrath. Going to the
beach? Grab a handcrafted hat or purse before you hit the
- Jan's good friend, Allyson Gernandt, will be next door with her gemstone and silver crafted
jewelry. Lots of color here!
- Remember the driftwood birdhouses and
fountains from last summer? Well, Steve Carter
is returning with another great collection.
- Bobby Bearden, creator of
kerosene can creatures, is bringing his newest recycled garden art.
Bowden will be back making music on a spam can banjo! You can play too! What fun!
- Brenda Long has been out for
a few seasons. She creates kudzu
wreaths and baskets for your patio and garden.
- Artist Pauline Marr will be
back for the "Hard Candy Christmas" show but not this one.
She paints her native land of the Cashier's area.
- I have just heard from Jimmy Hopkins
who turns scrap into amazing yard art. He will be
outside the front door with the big, colorful ,stick downs
for your garden.
- The white washed furniture makers,
Edward and Celia
Scheffer are not coming for this show . They will
be back next year, "Lord willing and the creek don't rise".
- Little Chicken Coops and Outhouse
storage buildings? Ramble Wood Ridge is a fun wood
craft business. They will be on the front with accessories
for your mountain home garden.
- Local author and artist, Joe Meigs, will be on the corner with his novels and paintings.
- Others may be added .
The entrance Tunnel has some exciting
The bright chickens on our posters this
year is the work of Karen and Tim
Chambers. They can turn a gourd
into a cheery chicken in no time. If you are a collector, they
will have new pieces for your house. They have reclaimed wood
with painted screens that are one of a kind, also.
I am glad to report that Tom Livingston's
fine wood Intarsia will be at this show. He is one of the best
craftsman in his field.
I own and enjoy one of Mary Curtin's
clay baskets year around . She molds them one
at a time with
imprints of nature in them : ferns, leaves, and flowers . Her customers
have not seen her in this area for awhile. They will be glad to
welcome her back and purchase some of her new creations. (I may
have to have another one ! )
pottery category is already filled:
- Starting in the truck tunnel is a favored
potter, Sue Malsnee. She has many area
collectors of her work. They will be glad to find
her newest designs.
- Note : Mike & Cindy Hart's
almost famous "pinecone pattern" stoneware pottery was scheduled to be
here .Instead, you can find them at the Sapphire Valley Master
Craftsman's show the same date as ours. They will be returning here
in November for 'Hard Candy Christmas' .
- Mark Wingertsahn's little clay
fantasy houses have been out for a few season's
but will be back with new work.
- Doc Welty is a fine potter
from Leicester. He is new this year. You are going to
like his glazes.
- Renee Speenburgh and Bill Ensign are also
first time exhibitors, introducing their stoneware and raku.
- Look for Harold Sims Catman2
booth. We all support his No- kill cat shelter
up in Cullowhee. Please
donate generously, too.
- Dogwood Crafters from
Dillsboro will be selling samples of their unique shop.
They feature handcrafts from the mountain area, also.
- There will be live guitar
music floating from the fingers of Macon County's
Ronnie Evans. He will be playing favorite holiday
tunes and selling his CDs.
- Have you ever tasted chocolate
jelly? Betty Lambert turned an old family recipe
into a delicious spread that you are going to
love. She adds pureed fruit to some to give variety.
- Kathy Nash will be back with her
heirloom nut brittle goodies. It is the best ever
homemade candy. Yum, yum. Terri Cook
was a hit in November with her homemade dips, mixes and
southern meat rubs. (I noticed lime chiffon pie mix on
her web site). A new
food vendor from Tennessee is House of Douglas Bakery.
They will be bringing Scottish and Irish breads,
and scones to take home .
- Do you remember the carrot cake Mom used to
make? Vicki Webb is bringing samples of this
scrumptious treat and will be selling cakes to take home. She lives up Glenville and has a
certified kitchen for year around orders. The Cold
Mountain Toffee makers are coming back with
- All customers of Kay and Will
Lake's duck & animal sculpture will be happy
to have them back.
- I met Melanie Sellers down in Sylva in the rain. I had to have her
wonderful glass windows in
the show. Look at
her miniature paintings, too.
- Patricia Adams ,a local
photographer, will be showing you shots of the mountains like you
have never seen. Mary Ann Baker's photography
also. She is a Jackson County lady that we are proud to
include in our group
- Nancy Basket (her name is
really Nancy Basket) is a basket
weaver that recycles kudzu and pine needles.
She will be demonstrating and selling her creations. The
Broom Brothers will be back for "Hard Candy" but Mark Hendry
will be showing off his expertise making "corn
broom "brooms . He also makes bark berry baskets and vine baskets .
- Another demonstrator is Molly McCurdy, a mountain
dulcimer maker. She will be showing you how easy
it is to strum a tune on the instruments she has made.
- Corn shuck flowers date back to the
early settlers. Betty Cabe is demonstrating how
they are made .You can purchase some of her
- Bill Reed is making his
milk soap like crazy to have enough for the summer show.
- Rhonda Nowicki is also a new artisan soap maker.
Also , Karin Ewing' s Soap Sudz line of oil based
soaks and scrubs. Oils like coconut, palm, sweet almond
and shea. Kasey Jackson has candles that
turn into delicious lotion to smoothe your rough spots. Try
scents like cucumber mint and coconut lime !
- Marker Mountain Herb and Flower Farm is
coming back with soy candles, spices and various teas.
- Elly Davey is a perennial
favorite with her whimsy folk dolls. She adds new creations
- Janet Anderson is a glass
artist of the highest acclaim. She will have fused creations for all her
faithful customers. Neal Hearn 's glass boxes are coming back. He
never has enough to satisfy all his fans but is working
overtime right now to have a delightful collection.
- I have just heard that Mary Ann
Latch , a teacher and painter of porcelain is
bringing her delicate collection . Welcome Mary Ann ,as a first time
- Emily Bartell is a just starting out
ceramics artist. She has a bright future in the arts.
- Another interesting artist is Kim Keats who is a
mixed media, fiber and wood designer. Her work resides
in several museums . You will see why .
We have attracted some wonderful
fine artists and painters this show such as:
- Just in: Carol Moore Demme:
fine artist of equine and animals. We are honored to have her
talent and beautiful work. She will bring some painted
- Janice Lippincot is a
southern lady who paints the area with a delicate touch
Look for prints, originals and giclees in watercolors.
- Patti Best paints the
mountains. She will have originals and prints that you
will have to have.
- Alan R Young ,will be back with
his award winning wildlife
- Elizabeth McAfee supports animal
rescue. Will her heroes be cooking ? Golfing ?
- Whatever , her animal caper paintings
will make you smile again. Look for her studio cat 'Sandy'
hiding in each scene! She will have originals, prints
- Jeanne Mack , a popular
southern artist, will be back with originals and prints.
She is a cat lover/rescuer .
- Welcome back to Jessie Collins from
Blairsville. She paints wildlife and mountain landscapes and
- I have just received word that Connie Tilley's
bird watercolors will be here.
- We are honored to have the fine art of Pui-Lan. She came here from Hong Kong in 1995. Her paintings are mixed
media with watercolors and Chinese inks on selected rice papers.
Each painting is embellished with calligraphy. Welcome Pui
- I met Cheryl
Greenfield a few years ago in Gatlinburg. She is from Ohio. She paints Christmas on plates, wood bowls and bobbins.
She is coming all the way down here to sell her wonderful work.
Collectors will love her ornaments.
- You can hardly find
painting on saws anymore. Nancy Moore still does. She is a
folk artist who has claimed ribbons on her painted
recycled items. She will be displaying painting on gourds, baskets, windows, saws and milk cans.
- Carolyn Cordell is a mixed media artist.
She will be back in her little gallery with metal [paintings,
mobiles and jewelry.
- A decorative tole painter from Tennessee is
Tammie Hulse. She is returning with her wood
items, signs and switch plates and more.
- Je Donne Morton is a decorative painter
from Virginia. She will have Christmas art on wood and tin.
- The fabric art category is looking is
looking good including: Linda Levy quilting, Sandra
Kennedy: quilted purses, Gretchen Branning:
purses from a man's neck tie, Norma Jean Corhn:
18' inch doll dresses, Glenda Davis: Ladies
Clothing with lace, Dana Godsey: Hand Stitched Framed art,
Trudy McFerrin: hand sewn purses: Charlene Wooten :
recycled quilt items, Linda Van Order: Beary Hill Bears
and stuff. Eleanor Trollinger (Practical Peaces), hand sewn
accessories. Jeanne Henderson makes "Anjelique
Classy" purses from tapestry fabric. I am glad that she is going
to be back with a nice collection for her customers.
- The wood craftsmen are just the best around:
- Dennis and Judy Wilkie: wood craft gifts and jewelry,
Smith: cutting boards & boxes,
- Ron Thompson: wood
- Ken Rudd: furniture, trash bins.
- Steve Simonelli: fine wood furniture.
- Laura DeWeese just got her space. Their specialty is natural bark edged fine wood accessories.
- The Armour family is coming up from Georgia to bring their
rustic furniture for your cabin home. You will like their
prices and quality.
- I Just heard that John and Janice Benton
are bringing their fine wood working . They
make quality products like salt
and pepper grinders ,always good gifts for the bride.
- Marshall Austin Wood Designs
is coming over from Tennessee with his creations . You can see
him up close on Face book.
- Lane & Shelvia Whitley are new
to this show with
pewter ornaments. I met them years ago at the Market Days show
in Tallahassee. There, I bought some of their animal ornaments for my
children who enjoy them every holiday. I am thrilled to have my
friends at this show for the first time.
- Look for Larry & Shirley Cotton: Hummingbird
- Dora Reynolds : Cloth plates and platters .
- Tommy Hill : (he uses only the
finest quality leather in his pieces.)
- Animals from recycled railroad spikes ? Yes, a
whole farm from Rich and Rhonda Peters. You will
love these little creatures.!
- Mary Ellen Boutelle & Cindy Murphy :
Stained Glass mosaics
- The knitters are in vogue right now: Eva
Tolotti: scarves William T. Smith: Shawls yarn
& pins and accessories. The Plaid Sheep Yarn: Johnetta Heil: hand woven for the home & wear.
- We have master jewelers: Roy and Dot
Meade: wire wrapping, Joy Whitney: nature beading
Brenda Winburn: original jewelry, Grady & Peggy Nolan: silver plate crafts,
Ellen Speed makes
amazing accessories from soda cans. What fun! Allyson
Gernandt: silversmith and Jan Nethery, natural designs.
- Nanci Hearn 's trademark is Sylvia and Vivian . She
will be presenting gemstone designs you will enjoying
- . Rich Andrews who carves folk
art signs and things is coming back . He will be demonstrating
his craft . Also returning is Steve Smithwick with his recycled glass bottle luminaries.
- Good news: Phyllis Mann is bringing her
hand woven cotton rugs. This is a vanishing art so stock up
while you can.
- Kathy and Bob Kimmel are settled in their new
mountain house and are coming back with their signature folk art
. Susan Mick makes fabulous frames and
mirrors using bark and
natural materials . Her 2013 space will feature a bigger assortment
- Greg & Rachel McKenzie
are masters at shaping
copper and glass sculpture into animals
and seascapes .You are gonna love their artistic
creations for your walls.
- Thank you for buying crafts from our
American artisans . Also the small gate admission helps
make this event possible in this special facility on the Western
Carolina University campus.
The show is almost full .Stay tuned.