SHARON BLAINE TURNER
Sharon Blaine Turner is an award winning Doll Artist from the
Foothills of the Appalachian Mountains in upstate South Carolina. She comes from a long line of mountain Artist and craftsmen who
have left her with a rich heritage :one in which she had developed
into her own unique style. I can not remember when I wasn't
creating something ". A lifelong fascination with marionettes and
colorful, whimsical elves is what inspired Sharon to start creating
Art dolls 17 years ago.
We are proud to
have Sharon as our Featured Artist for the 2018 'Hard Candy
Christmas Show "
Many people have asked me "WHAT IS A 'HARD CANDY CHRISTMAS "anyway. It
is a Mountain Christmas Tradition .
Christmas was always celebrated in a big way in the mountain area where I grew up.
Even if the year had been tight ,each
child got a stocking with an apple ,orange and a stick of
hard candy ;peppermint being the favorite. The best gifts were hand made with love and
thoughtfulness . Our first Christmas tree was a cedar
from the neighbor's field. Store bought, fancy trees were unheard
of . . I remember the year my brother brought a strand of bubble lights home from Michigan. It was truly magic.
was sure I heard angels singing in the cold, night skies . My sister
and I decorated our plain farm house with greenery, cones and holly. We
turned a thorn shrub into a glistening Gumdrop Tree with some
white spray paint It was a portent
of things to come.
I helped my mother bake special cakes we only had that time
of the year : fresh coconut ,black walnut fudge and the crowning
glory :an English Fruit cake . It was tenderly wrapped in
cheesecloth soaked in spirits to age.. I remeber the year of
the stack fruitcake for daddy .
The joy and happiness of that time never left me. I feel it every year when I start planning this show.
It gets stronger when the big tree is brought down from Little Canada
into the truck
tunnel and Larry brings out his wreaths. The fresh
pine aroma says Christmas is coming again .
I bring out the apples from Barber Orchard to share on the ticket
table and dump wrapped peppermint pieces in the the family
candy jar to pickup . The show is almost ready to open.
The most exciting time for me, is set up day. Each
exhibitor brings out their creations they are selling . It is a
work for all, but well worth it .
After they have gone home, I love strolling around and
amazing talent in each booth . It is like the night before Christmas; waiting ,
waiting 'till morning .
On opening day, 'early bird' customers rush in for the first pick
of the show.
It is so satisfying for shoppers to return each year
that handcrafted gift for someone special . Some say the
Christmas Spirit of kindness and sharing comes at that time . I hope
The 'Hard Candy Christmas 'is hand crafted gifts, fresh mountain
greenery wreaths and gingerbread ornaments . There is nothing
like it anywhere !
Current Show Exhibitor
Small Beginnings :
The Mountain Artisans Art & Craft Shows started in
Macon County in 1987. Only 8 artisans exhibited at
the first Christmas show in Franklin, NC.
We never imagined that,
down the road, we were headed to the wonderful Ramsey
Center on the Western Carolina University campus in
Cullowhee, North Carolina!
It is 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 small 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, blacksmithing, clay art, folk
dolls, corn shuck flowers, and primitive furniture were inspired
from past generations.
You will find it all here.
Art and Crafts Shows provide a
marketplace for customers and artisans to meet. It is an amazing
collection under one roof. You would have to visit dozens
of 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. It is home to the Catamount's
basketball games but two times each year, they move over for
our craft shows. A great set up crew makes it all look easy for
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 highway. 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
just to be here. Click on the map to see how to get
to Cullowhee NC from Asheville, Cherokee, and Atlanta.
In loving memory of Dr David Belcher (WCU ) Chancellor,
who passed away this year . He and Susan always supported the
artist and crafts community . Each year they 'shopped 'till they
dropped' for Christmas . He will be missed but not forgotten .
Thank you , David and Susan ,for all you did .
Outside Artists: The sidewalk and surrounding
area leading up to the big Catamount door entrance has a sample
of the quality artisans inside. Look for the following
- Woodcraftsman, Jerry
Stanley NC Mountains Outdoor Furniture handcrafts Adirondack chairs, swings, birdhouses (for
real birds) and more. He constructs all with Western Red
Cedar, stainless steel nails and blue ribbon quality.
- AW Ruff makes the best
Blue Bird boxes around .He also makes Mountain Toys and Cutting
Boards at the right price .
- Jan Kleinrath Jan's
All things Canvas will be back with her Hats, Travel Purses and
more. She is
- staying home for this show instead of
heading south .
- Ken Di Rico's Smoky Mountain delicious kettle popcorn will be back.
New, this year is crispy Pork Skins .
- Ed Hudgin's Sawmill Tables
are favorites .If you missed getting one last year ,here is
- I expect Kathy Cirka Backwoods
Bakery will be on the corner with Gingerbread Men .I
can't wait for tins of peanut butter cookies,
Pfeffernusse, and Sugar Plum treats to dream about. New, this
year is strudels and turnovers.
heard that Barbara St Germain and Margaret Sudderth
will be back with their fun Snowman wreaths and more.
The aroma of
cloves and cinnamon says Michelle Leigh's Dried Fruit
Ropes and more are back .
year is Stephanie Ramsey and Steve Coleman with
stick Reindeer made from laurel branches ! They are adorable and
sure to be a hit ! I want one for
under my tree and on the porch with a wreath around his neck ! You will too.
- Come inside. The entrance tunnel has
some exciting exhibitors:
Larry Haskett and Evelyn Sanborn
- from A&E Tree Farm and Awe Natural
bring the fresh wreaths and garlands for your house. They
bring the big 'Hard Candy Christmas' 'tree that starts the
Christmas holiday spirit each year .
- Sue Malsnee is a favorite potter
who has many area collectors .She will be returning next year 's
'Summertime Show ,June 29-30 2019 .
- In her place is
Ford Mountain Memories painting on Antique
Windows, barn wood ,saws and Ornaments.
- Neal Hearn Boxes by Neal
will be on the corner with his Christmas collection of
his unique boxes.
- Dogwood Crafters will be
back with samples from their Dillsboro shop .
- Featured Artist Tom Livingston's
Piece by Piece Intarsia will have a gorgeous
- Good live music brings
There will be live guitar
music floating from the fingers of Macon County's
Ronnie Evans. He will be selling his
to enjoy all year. He brings some of the music we grew up with.
The pottery section includes :
Jugs and more at it's best !
- Kim vonHedemann Critters by Kim
are coming back for Christmas Adorable lady bugs, cats and bears and more
on big and small trinket boxes. You are
going to collect these!
- Ann Suggs Stonehouse
We welcome Ann with her Christmas luminaries and
- Wendy Converse Converse
Creations is a clay artist with some exciting
creations . Welcome Wendy ! I saw her display at
another show and she is talented with a capital T .
- Leah Walker
Creek Essentials is bringing some handsome Coffee Mugs
Specialty foods and sweets:
Delightful Dips and More is coming with Cheese Ball Mixes,
Homemade dips and Rubs.
Cranberry Hollow has her customers who love her Dips and
Beelite Candles features only genuine Beeswax Candles and
this year's Mountain Honey .
- Scotty Ellis Cold
Mountain Toffee is back with Peppermint Bark just
'n time for Christmas giving and eating !
- Lin Johnson Mimi's
Mountain Mixes is Beer Baking Mixes . Who would have
thought ! Stock up while they are here .
- Kelly Allred Wildflour Blue Bakery
specializes in decorated Christmas Cookies and other
- Jessica DeMarco Copper
Pot Traditions features Strawberry Preserves, Crispy
Pickles and more .
- Bill Reed Freedom Farms
is coming back with his
Milk Soap and his personal grooming accessories.
- Laura Craig Shade Tree
Farm soap maker, will have some new,
delicious new flavors.
- Donna Grant /Kim Lusk 'Nothing
Fancy " All Natural Body Care products, Soaps
and herbal based good stuff .
- Doll Makers:
- Corn shuck flowers date back to the
early settlers. Heritage Artisan, Betty Cabe, is preserving this
vanishing craft. She will demonstrating and selling her Colorful
Bouquets and Dolls. I bet there will be Smoky Mountain
Bears, too. New ,this year will be
- Vintage Santas and let's see what else
she has dreamed up for you .
- Belinda Slate will be returning with her
Old World Santas and Christmas Characters.
- Heritage Folk Artist Elly Davey
has been charming collectors for years with her tiny dolls
with Hickory Nut heads ! She will be sitting out this
show to recover from some health challenges . Look for her Christmas
collection and Whimsies in 2019 . Meanwhile reach her
at home at 828 293 9083 .
- In her space will be Donna Persinger
HeartRoots with Encaustic Art and Diane
Winuk with Original Jewelry .
Roberta Brown Roberts
Pressed Flower Art has the flowers of summer
drying for her framed pictures...Her garden has produced pansy, roses and daisy blooms for new
dried Petal Paintings .
Pruitt Another Place In Time is
working on little white churches for his customers. Also ,
Wife,Silvia Pruitt will
have her handwork.
- Roy Owenby is coming with
his mountain stories and his latest Novels .
- Denny and Bonnie Wallace Greasy Branch
Crafts are bringing their Christmas collection of Wreaths
and lighted Boxes .Denny's Turned Vases are one of a kind .
- Connie Gregory Cat's Meow Pinecone
Creations are going to be back .Also fabric and wood items.
- Suzanne Summers Original Suzanne Art delights your eye with her explosion of color .
- Tonya Vannoy is a craftwoman in TinArt .
Look for Tonya's Tins on Facebook. Her Luminaries are special
- Renee Hockensmith Hockensmith Mountain
Art has her Christmas collection of Alcohol Ink, Resin, and Polymer Art.
- Wendy Griffith hand paints art on wood and
glass . She will be back with her Christmas collection of Animals, Birds and
- Bayley Rewis is working right now on her line of
Soy Candles in delicious scents .
- Mike Wilson Wilson Knives .When
you get a Wilson knife ,you are getting a lifetime of fine
craftsmanship . Made
- one at a time .
- Keith Mathews Leather by
Veterans will be coming with quality leather products.
- belts for adults and children and hand tooled wallets .
- Frank and Darlene Marker Marker Mountain
is back with their mountain farm organic products: Candles,
- spices, Teas and Herbal delights.
- Judy Gunter Christmas Florals . Let's see
what surprises Judy has dreamed up for us this year .
- John and Christine Massie have framed Metal
Art. You are going to like their unique style .Welcome John and
- Renee Biggs is bringing soy candles
with delicious fruit in the base .
- Fabric and Fiber category includes :
- They are back ! Susan and
Mark Kennedy has been out with a wrist repair for Susan.
- Let's welcome her back with good sales for
her Hand Quilted Purses and Mark's Photography !
- Bev Borchardt has a following who
watches for her latest Quilted Wall Hanging ,Quilts and
- Linda Levy is coming to this year's
show with her Quilted Hangings, Baby Quilts and more.
Gingerbread Land features hand quilted holiday
decorations . Customers love her original table runners, wall
hangings and ornaments .
- Debbie and Larry Bennett Out
of the Drawer Quilts specializes in neck purses . (I have
several that I wear to keep up with myself )!
- Dora Reynolds Designer Tableware
is a hit each show
with her bright, colorful, Fabric Plates and bowls. She
will have her summer collection of winter birds and
- Knot Just
Country Nina M Hutchins is a fine seamstress who will
bring baby items, kitchen accessories, bears and dolls.
- Donna McCarthyAlpaca Tierra
will be back with Alpaca socks and Fiber art .
- Barbara Quinn J&C Crafts
Towels ,Aprons, fabric bowls; great, practical ,gifts .
- Nancy and Thomas Smith
JeNan Wood and Fiber hand make
a variety of
items for knitters, spinners and fabric artists .
- Look for project bags for the perfect
- Jim Boxerman Jim's leather Craft
have a wide variety of hand tooled leather goods. Gun
holsters ,purses and more.
Linda and Ed Barton
creators of Felt Ornaments are coming back with a wide variety
of your favorite school colors !
- Brenda Fuqua Lindsay'sLoft is
coming back for Christmas !The Grandchildren will love this
play area at Grammy's house.
- Sue Dial Fiber
Artists has wool products and recycled items
- Mary Jo Gayer is demonstrating Triangle Loom weaving and
will have her winter
creations :Hand woven Shawls and Handspun Yarns .
- Ann Eastabrooks Scarf Lady
has been hand weaving ladies accessories for many moons
.I am so thrilled to have her back with her
- winter collection . Welcome Back, Ann!
- Darla Friedrich Cold Mountain
Crafts handcrafts Wearable Fiber Creations .
- Other Artists :
- New this show is Grail Hall
Stillmomentsart . His Santa art is presented in prints
and paintings. He is capturing renditions of the
Christ . Welcome Grail.
"Finishing Touches" by Grail Hall .
- The Alger Family has Jennifer's
snow paintings and
neat rustic Birdhouses . Stay tuned for the details .
- Diane Rachel Orcutt
acrylic originals and prints .
- We are in for a treat: Jenean Hornbuckle
is showing her original paintings . Welcome Jenean .
- Once upon a time I lived the hectic
life of a mother with 3 children. My darling neighbor
was 9 years old and visited me often to see what I was
painting, drawing or inventing. She was impressed and wanted
to be an artist when she grew up .Guess what ? She is a
guest exhibitor at this year's 2018 show ! Meet Sandy De
Niear of Franklin. I am so proud of her work . You will
like it too . Welcome Sandy !
- Dorothy Owen Grandmas Dot's
Critters has found her talent :Lions, bears .elephants,
and whimsical pigs will make you smile and make great
- William Menyas will
be back with his
Soapstone Carvings .
- Dick Covalinski/Wil Baker .This
talented duo dazzles with stained glass sun catchers and
- Monika Hoerl's Rosemaling
is so special. She is working right now on
traditional plates ,ornaments and plaques.
- Bill Radford LittleFeather
has genuine Cherokee art . Carvings on jewelry and
knives make special gifts.
- Leah Walker PisgahCreekEssentials
is new this year with her handcrafted Pottery and
personal beauty products .
- PHOTOGRAPHY :
- Sam Robertson Kairosartistry
his an artists eye for capturing the mountain's beauty . New
this year .
Jason Rizzo Photography Art always has
interesting pieces for you .
Michele Schwartz MyDivineLandscapes Mountain Photography
at it's finest.
The wood craftsmen at
this show are some of the best around:
Benton Wesley's Wood Art will be demonstrating small item
wood turning . He has hard to find Pepper Mills as well as his Wood
Art and bowls.
New this year ,is
craftsman James Rials with Wood Art, Cutting Boards and
Serving Trays .Welcome ,James.
- Ken Rudd's customers sells his Tables,
Potato Boxes and Waste Cans
as fast as he can get them up here. Hardly any woodcrafter
makes solid wood products ,anymore.
- Steve Waldroop will be back with
his cowboy theme wood craft . You can hardly find Quilt
Racks anymore. he specializes in Essentioal Oil rack
- I have found a new woodcraftsman who
makes amazing children's toys, models and more. You are
going to be impressed with
- Mike Holden AWC
Woods has some handcrafted Toys and Models that you are not going
- to believe ! He will have rocking
horses for Christmas giving .
form of 'painting with wood' is Marquetry . Beth
and Allen Woody make small, decorative wood turning
pictures that are wonderful.
Dennis and Judy Wilkie
bring fine wood turned Writing Pens, Ice Cream Scoops
,Seam Rippers and more that sell like hot cakes .
Tonia & John
Cannon Balsam Mountain Woodworks will have new
Wood Art items for your house .
turns throwaway roots into Lamps, Pedestals and accessories. Welcome
Chris to Cullowhee!
Rickie and Benita Lemons2ndTimeAround
believes wood ought to have another chance to shine! He has
cheese boards, cutting boards ,tables and more .
We have some of the most skilled jewelers
from our area and far away:
Anderson Wild Fired Glass is a holiday favorite with her
Fused Glass Ornaments .
- Angel Hudgins Hudgins Designs
this year with Hand Stamped Jewelry in cool designs for the 20 something
- Coming back is Jacolyn Campbell, Master
Wire Wrapper .She will have chain maille styles,
- Billy and Lavada Anderson BornAgainJewelry creations
from vintage silverware.
- Becky Smith
Silver Work and Design won Best of Show at Mountain Heritage Day (last
original designs will be here .
- Marleen DeNardo
LittleWoodLander has cool Leather Jewelry; hand stamped
- Shelia Bowers Wire wrapping and neat
Folk Painting .
- Kelli Perry Wintersun Fused
Glass Jewelry .
- Janette Franich Designs by
Janette has Handcrafted Metalwork : Lovely ,dainty art, I
- Just in is Sarah Martinko with fun
earrings for the 20something crowd . Her paw print design is
going to be a hit with the students that will be here this year
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