AWM Treasured: Happy Holidaze

‘Happy Holidaze from the Artisans of WMASS!’ by friskyfurnishings

From the silly to the sublime we have it all – and we wish you the happiest of holidays!


Rainbow Kid Sized Tassel Hat…

$16

Vegan Friendly Clutch Wallet…

$44

Hand Painted Bottle Light – …

$35

Tie Dyed Wintergreen Candy L…

$20

Three Pipe Modern Planter

$65

Red and Black Leather Studde…

$75

Large Batik Purse in Teal an…

$58

Bronze Jingle Bell Ornament

$15

4 O’Clock Yellow Felt Wa…

$10

Blue Heart Journal – Removab…

$40

The ‘Naomi’ Crossbod…

$265

Handwoven Chenille Scarf- Re…

$60

Mosaic Tray with Wooden word…

$25

Monstar – Upcycled Monster W…

$12

Zebra Sweet Potato Snap Pouc…

$16

Massachusetts State Wooden P…

$16
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AWM Treasured: Fall Colors Everywhere

Curated by Laura B. of friskyfurnishings

It’s the middle of October and absolutely beautiful outside. The colors of the season can be found in all of our local artisan’s shops. We invite you to take a look and shop local for the season. Jewelry, something to wear, home goods and more!


Pumpkin Planter Box

$19

Brynn Crossbody Convertible …

$155

Sam Summer Beer Cap Earrings

$18

Red Ginko Tunic

$39

Yellow Heart Journal – Remov…

$40

Necklace, Amethyst Geode Pen…

$97

Padded Zipper Cosmetic Jewel…

$18

16 inch Pillow Sham Cover in…

$28

Glass Snail

$30

Fall Colors Fabric Collage B…

$48

Welcome To Our Perch Wall ha…

$30

Tie Dyed Fuchsia, Deep Orang…

$25

Fox 3D stand up Wood Puzzle …

$49.88

Reflection Drops – Bead Wove…

$24

Handwoven Chenille Scarf- Au…

$60

Burgandy Harvest Upcycled To…

$64
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AWM Treasured: Fall Craft Show – October 3, 2015

Curated by Laura B. of friskyfurnishings

Here is a small sample of the folks who will be at our Fall Craft Show!


Welcome To Our Perch Wall ha…

$30

Steampunk Style Earrings, B…

$20

Handmade Table Top Organizer…

$22

Curly Combo Hat

$25

Dichroic Earrings Aqua Green…

$15

Candy Corn iPhone Case iPod …

$40

Upcycled Denim Slouch Bag – …

$55

Dyed agate slices with match…

$100

Ayinger Beer Cap Earrings

$18

Market Bag – Bold striped an…

$40

Sand Quartz Crystal Pendant …

$30

Brynn Crossbody Convertible …

$155

Large Small and Mini Needle …

$30

HALLOWEEN BOW TIE Haunting g…

$15

World’s Greatest Knittin…

$120

SHOWER LIKE A MAN- Cinnamon …

$4.75
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Getting to Know…The Celadon Studio

This month we visit with Malea Rhodes, Owner of The Celadon Studio located in Northampton. Malea’s beautiful ceramic work can be found online at: www.maleaspottery.com and www.theceladonstudio.com. She is also active on social media: Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest as maleaspottery and on Twitter as malearhodes.

Tell us a bit about yourself and what arts/crafts you make.

CeladonStudioMugI make contemporary porcelain pottery using the potters wheel and hand building techniques. The surfaces of my pots are where I really show my creativity!

I use many techniques in my botanical themed surfaces. Mishima is a form of inlay where you carve the pot with thin lines, paint on a layer of colored underglaze or a thinned slip (mud), allow that to dry overnight and then wipe the excess away. Slip trailing creates a raised pattern. Slip or mud from your clay body is sieved smooth and drawn into a squirt type bottle with a modified tip and piped out much in the same way you would pipe icing onto a cake. Sgraffito is almost the reverse of Mishima. A layer of colored slip or underglaze gets painted on first, allowed to set then the pattern is carved away. All of these processes are performed at the “leather hard” stage, the pot is dry enough to hold its form without warping but still soft enough to carve without being brittle.

What are your best sellers? Why?

CeladonStudioPrepBowlsI make these little prep bowls. They are tiny, probably no more than 3″ across and about an inch and a half tall. I sell them at fairs, shows and galleries and I cannot make enough of them! They are all thrown on the potter’s wheel, trimmed and then hand carved so each one is a one of a kind little piece of art. I am at the point where I am trying to make 30 a week and still can’t keep my stock up. It’s a great problem to have!

What is your goal for this year?
CeladonStudioTumblers
Last year I did too many fairs! Since joining AWM, I really found out about all the fairs in the area that I had been missing and I felt that I had to do them all. I applied to and exhibited in well over 20 fairs last season. Sometimes two per weekend, sending one of my assistants to run one while I was at another. It was way too much and I picked fairs that didn’t do well for my type of work. This year I decided to stick to under a dozen, but keep the same budget. So I am applying to higher end fairs but only about 8 or so and the rest will be the small ones that maybe I take to fill in here or there, are really local, or help out a friend. I make really nice but high quality work and there is no reason that I can’t sell my higher ticket items. I just have to find the right market and be a little more choosy about where I put my efforts.

Any tips on sustainability in business?

CeladonStudioGarlicHolderI have owned and operated a community clay studio for the past 9 years. Initially I was a member of the studio then had the opportunity to buy. The ability to sublet space and have others share the cost of the rent and expenses helped me keep the business affordable while I was getting going.

Now that my space has grown, I need help keeping up with the daily demands of running a studio with close to 30 tenants and students. I have 6 assistants that I give free space to in exchange for work. It keeps things running, keeps me sane and gives them a place to work.

CeladonStudioSoapDishI am a huge proponent of sharing your space or knowledge to help better your business. It is good for all the people involved and can be the beginnings of building community around your craft.

Do you teach your craft?

I teach ceramics in my studio 4 days a week. I began teaching at a local arts council back when I was in college and have been teaching ever since. There are so many benefits to teaching. I love to share my passion.

 

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AWM Treasured: Sweet Summer Creators

Curated by Laura B. of Frisky Furnishings

As summer winds down our artisans just keep cranking out beautiful work – something to wear, or put on your wall, or even something to play with, we have it all…


POLLINATE: Orange Mint Moth….

$30

Bunny Deluxe Wooden 3D Puzzl…

$16

Cross Body Patchwork Tote Pu…

$59

Signature Fused Plastic Conf…

$34

Colorful Fabric Collage Boho…

$48

Eudialite Bead Embroidery Cu…

$150

Red nest with 3 eggs, a nest…

$40

Monstar – Upcycled Monster W…

$12

Night Sky I – 5×7 Matted Fin…

$20

Tie Dyed, Hippie, Sunshine R…

$28

Necklace Pendant Bead Woven …

$125

Oranges Clutch Wallet – Vega…

$44

Zipper Pouch from Upcycled D…

$18

Poetic Mountain – Art Card, …

$6

Fine Silver .999 Pendant Fe…

$32

Handwoven Chenille Scarf- Su…

$60
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AWM Treasured: The Incredibly Eclectic Artisans of WMass

Curated by Laura B. of Frisky Furnishings & Finery

Wood, fiber, plastic, metal, glass – we have it all here in Western Mass….Shop local!


Massachusetts State Wooden P…
$17.95

Blue Sea Turtle
$45

Short Handled Seed and Feed …
$48

Hunters Winter Journey. Orig…
$22

Red nest with 3 eggs, a nest…
$40

Reversible Fabric Bowl in Mu…
$20

Monstar – Upcycled Monster W…
$12

Handmade Quilted Wristlet W…
$17

Cuff Bracelet – Boho Gypsy W…
$38

Pleasure – ACEO, Abstract Co…
$6

Sky Blue Swirl Lampwork Glas…
$65

Green Heart Journal – Remova…
$25

Tie Dyed, Sunshine Rainbow S…
$28

European Robin on a Twig Cut…
$200

Steampunk Charm Bracelet, SB…
$65

Handmade Love Buttons – Set …
$4
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AWM Treasures Moms!

‘Shop AWM Members for Mothers Day’ by friskyfurnishings

“Eat your veggies” the wise mother said…..Show your appreciation for Mom by shopping local and buying her a one of a kind handmade item. We have an excellent selection here made by the Artisans of WMass.


Necklace Pendant Bead Woven …
$125

Yellow dandelion fused glass…
$15

Needle Felted Owls in Nest
$55

Patchwork Purse in Blue Gree…
$59

Whimsical Interchangeable Ea…
$28

Simplicity – Multi Gemstone …
$58

Rainbow headband // Thneed …
$22

Digial Print of Mixed Media …
$12

Tree Puzzle 75 pc Wedding Gu…
$160

Summer Wine blank journal wi…
$35

Poppy Pillow
$50

Turquoise Captured with Bead…
$76

Eat Your Veggies Snap Pouch
$16

Handwoven Chenille Scarf- Ka…
$60

The Green Stairway – 8×10 Fr…
$60

Key Holder with print of Hom…
$25
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Getting to Know…Bewoven Studio

This month we visit with member Lawrence Peters, the artisan behind Bewoven Studio in Belchertown, MA.  He can be found on facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/bewovenstudiobelchertown

Getting To Know Bewoven...displayWhat do you create?

Using my auction-bought 20 year old Schacht Baby Wolf eight shaft loom I weave textiles for personal accessorizing and the home. I have been drawn to the softness and texture of cotton but on tap are the use of other fibers including tencel and bamboo.

What inspires you?

Ever since childhood, fabrics have appealed to me, especially the way that they drape on the body. Shelter magazines such as ELLE Decor, House Beautiful and Metropolitan Home (sadly closed) influenced my connection to home decor. But, I cannot fail to Getting To Know Bewoven...yarn colorsreference COLOR and nature as the primary source of inspiration. The process of weaving is almost magical. Watching individual strands of yarn turn into a textile never ceases to amaze. I am so grateful to local weaver and teacher, Scott Norris, for recommending that I acquire a copy of the out-of-print A Handweavers Pattern Book by Marguerite Porter Davison. It is the place I turn to when I want to try a new pattern for a scarf or table runner.

Getting To Know Bewoven...on the loomWhat is your favorite thing that you sell?

I love the clean and classic lines of my Huck Box table runners. They appeal to my aesthetic. I’m reminded of what an editor told me years ago that she and her team guide their followers to what’s on the horizon.

What is your best seller?

My cotton scarves and table runners woven in various huck patterns resonate with buyers. I believe that customers are drawn to symmetry of these weaves. Also buyers appreciate the feel of cotton against their skin. I also use colors that complement any color scheme or decor.

What is your goal for this year?Getting To Know Bewoven...table runner

I want to expand my knowledge of, and experience with, fiber and will be making scarves that combine cotton, and bamboo, as well as cotton and tencel. I also want to have Bewoven Studio pieces for sale at more retailers locally and beyond.

What is your favorite thing in your studio that you just can’t live without?

My electric bobbin winder changed my life. Not only can I wind a bobbin in record time but the yarn is more evenly wound.

How do you like to support the creative community?

I love spreading the word about the work of my fellow creators. That includes reaching out to local businesses to financially support AWM events.

How do you promote your business?

I promote by being diligent about keeping my Facebook page current. A picture is indeed worth a thousand words. Also, by identifying more retailers to contact, and making sure to have my business cards on me because I never know who I am going to meet and who they may know.

Any advice for the newbie artisan?

Reach out to other artisans. They have already “been there” and can hopefully keep you from reinventing that proverbial wheel. Put together a list of questions so your conversations are focused and not all over the place, and take notes.

During tight times, how do you run your business more efficiently?

I endeavor to use my yarn wisely. The nature of weaving means that there is always going to be yarn waste. So after I have sampled a new piece I put the longest warp possible on the loom. That way I am able to avoid making more of that inevitable yarn waste.

GettingToKnowBewoven05

How do you try to keep your dollars local?

The bulk of my yarn comes from WEBS in Northampton. But I am also a big believer in buying used equipment and surplus yarn from other local weavers.

Any tips on sustainability in business?

If you can, waste not. I now use that yarn waste (also called thumbs) and make yarn flower pins. So, see what you can reuse and turn those into a sale-able item.

What are your hidden talents?Getting To Know Bewoven...placemat

I like to experiment in the kitchen. When making dinner I want to put diverse ingredients together in order to create a great tasting dish. By the way I am a big, big fan of Thai Kitchen’s green curry paste. You can buy it at Stop & Shop. I use the paste in cod stews and it imparts a delicious flavor. I think of my cooking curiosity as a “why not” attitude. And I endeavor to apply that to my weaving and to the development of my artisan business.

Do you teach your craft?

I do not teach at the moment but I do share the tips that I have learned with my fellow weavers.

Getting To Know Bewoven...scarvesHow would you like to see AWM grow in the future?

I would like the membership to increase and for AWM to be THE recognized resource for consumers looking to buy locally from artisans. Perhaps AWM can develop its own e-commerce platform so that members can sell their work through AWM and AWM can generate revenue by taking a percentage of the sale. Pooling contacts, resources, etc. will allow every AWM member to be more efficient and productive than he or she can be on their own.

Anything else you’d like to share with the blog readers about yourself or your business?

Decades ago I started up a group in New York City called B.O.S.S. – Business Owners Strategy Sessions. I had met a number of individuals who had worked as staff graphic designers or copy writers but were laid off. They were doing freelance work and did not realize that what they were running real businesses. So, to give them the tools they needed, I asked friends of mine who were experts in such areas as accounting, cold calling, legal matters, public relations to come to our monthly meetings and share their expertise. I bring this up because AWM is pretty much doing the same thing except the focus is on artisans. I also find it helpful to remind myself that it takes time to develop a business and to not ‘should’ on myself. To that end I have a few sayings that I keep in mind. “Rejection: Just think of it as lack of imagination on their part.” “Sales is a numbers game.”

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Getting to Know SDS Silver

This month we visit with member Sharon Lamonakis, who along with Debra Wilcox and Sheila Dupras make up SDS Silver. Their shop can be found on facebook at: facebook.com/sdssilver and she can be reached via email at sdssilver3@gmail.com.

Silver Jewelry by SDS SilverWhat do you create?

We use PMC fine silver clay to create jewelry. The Clay is rolled out, the design is created, cut out and then dried. After it is dried it is sanded and then fired in a kiln. After firing it is tumbled. When it comes out it’s a fine silver and can be colored with a patina. Finally, it is buffed.

Where in Western Mass do you call home?

Turners Falls

What inspires you?

Our inspirations come from pictures, nature and creative thoughts.

What is your favorite thing that you sell?

I love our earrings.

earrings and pendant by SDS Silver

What is your best seller?

Both our earrings and pendants are our best sellers.

What is your goal for this year?

We want to put smiles on our customer’s faces and love in their hearts.

What is your favorite thing in your studio that you just can’t live without?

I can’t live without jeweler’s pliers.

How do you like to support the creative community?

We love to share our enthusiasm of the art of Precious Metal Clay.

earrings by SDS Silver

How do you promote your business?

We promote using word of mouth. We also attend and sell our work at local art and craft fairs.

Any advice for the newbie artisan?

Keep doing what you love and don’t give up.

During tight times, how do you run your business more efficiently?

We use as many natural objects for the designs as possible.

How do you try to keep your dollars local?

We participate in local fairs.

SDS Silver Booth

Do you teach your craft?

I help others in the classes we attend. We go

to class as often as we can in order to develop our skills in the art of jewelry making.

How would you like to see AWM grow in the future?

I’d like to see AWM increase our membership of artists and to continue to share our knowledge in any way we can.

Necklace by SDS Silver

Anything else you’d like to share with the blog readers about yourself or your business?

We are very proud of our accomplishments and are committed to continuing to grow as artists.

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AWM Treasured – Happy Greens!

‘Happy Greens Abound in Western Massachusetts’ by friskyfurnishings

…despite all the snow still on the ground our group of talented artists is ready for spring with all this green!


ST Patrick Day Bow tie

$15

3D Giclee Print of “Eye…

$200

Yellow Dogfish Head Beer Cap…

$18

Monstar – Upcycled Monster W…

$12

Digital Painting: Spring Ren…

$6

Needle Felted Wild Moose

$35

Lotus Blossom and Seedpod Pr…

$12

Handwoven Chenille Scarf- Ra…

$60

Steampunk Necklace –Compute…

$50

Quilted Wall Hanging on a Sp…

$53

Fabric Book or Journal Cover…

$15

Golden Pear Mug Ready To Shi…

$34

Bananas and Birds Upcycled T…

$56

Nature Buttons – Set of 3

$4

Set of 2 polka dot colorful …

$30

3 Pipe Graffiti Planter

$75
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