Handmade Crafts » wv art http://www.mountainmade.com/blog The blog of West Virginia handmade art and handmade crafts. Wed, 11 Jul 2012 14:48:29 +0000 http://wordpress.org/?v=2.8.5 en hourly 1 West Virginia’s Very Own Marble King http://www.mountainmade.com/blog/west-virginias-very-own-marble-king http://www.mountainmade.com/blog/west-virginias-very-own-marble-king#comments Wed, 14 Jul 2010 20:19:40 +0000 Heidi Haldeen http://www.mountainmade.com/blog/?p=933 Marble King

Becky Henderson (far right) of MountainMade launches a Marble King marble down one of the toys at the gallery.

West Virginia is known for its rich tradition in fine art glass and marbles. Did you know that Marble King, Inc., was founded in 1949 by Berry Pink and Seller Peltier in St. Mary’s, W.Va.?

The factory didn’t move to Paden City, W.Va., until 1958 when Manager Roger Howdyshell relocated the factory after the original one was destroyed by fire. Howdyshell, who purchased Marble King in 1983, was the first to create cat’s eye marbles and veneering marbles.

Marble King, Inc., is still owned and operated by the Howdyshell family. The factory is open 7 days a week, 365 days a year and is touted as “The world’s best known and best loved quality marbles.” Marble King marbles have been featured in the movies Goonies, Hook and Home Alone.

Marbles aren’t just for tournament play. MountainMade is proud to carry Marble King Marbles and several Mountain Craft Shop toys, heirloom toys that family and friends will enjoy for generations.

Made from real wood (no plastic!) harvested here in West Virginia. Simple treasures and mind teasers like the Marble Trick, shuttle Puzzle to the beloved Marble Trees and Marble Chutes.

There is fun for kids of all ages. Of course, when you pick up the Marble Blister Pack of Marbles you’ll learn how to play those old marble games and what a “mig” is and why a shooter is called a “taw.”

So, what are you waiting for? Get your game on!

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Lights, Camera, Action At MountainMade http://www.mountainmade.com/blog/lights-camera-action-at-mountainmade http://www.mountainmade.com/blog/lights-camera-action-at-mountainmade#comments Sun, 11 Jul 2010 22:00:05 +0000 Becky Henderson http://www.mountainmade.com/blog/?p=924 On Camera At MountainMade

Working at MountainMade provides a constant source of challenges. On any given day, there are new details in running a retail business.

This winter presented additional problems brought by the record snowfall in Tucker County. However, taping the video pieces was a completely different challenge for one who prefers to take care of business without much attention.

First of all, I am not a MountainMade artisan. What I know about our artisans and their art I have learned from them. I hope and worry that the way I have related their craft, skills and history is correct.

Second, I have never been a thespian. At times, I can still be anxious before giving a talk or presentation. While filming these videos, I strove to clearly relate the details of the artisan’s skills and keep my knees from knocking.

And I worried about my appearance. How did my hair look? Did I slouch? In the midst of it all, I could hear my mother saying “stand up straight.” Of course, this had nothing to do with the quality of the video.

I hope the artisans are satisfied with my comments on their craft that I related in the video pieces. I am truly in awe everyday when I see what their talents can create.

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July Exhibiting Artist: Charlotte Gerlach http://www.mountainmade.com/blog/july-exhibiting-artist-charlotte-gerlach http://www.mountainmade.com/blog/july-exhibiting-artist-charlotte-gerlach#comments Tue, 06 Jul 2010 22:00:14 +0000 Heidi Haldeen http://www.mountainmade.com/blog/?p=916 Charlotte Gerlach and works

Charlotte Gerlach is a marvel and a West Virginia treasure. Self-taught, Charlotte’s ability to capture the fine details is little short of amazing. She works in oil paints. Her exhibit will be a collection of original works, prints and giclee’.

A nationally recognized artist, Charlotte has earned numerous awards and had her work commissioned. She is widely published.

Charlotte is known for her intricate, life-like work. “I want the viewer to feel a sense of being able to walk into the scene, touch the wildlife and enjoy our wonderful world of nature,” she said.

A generous spirit, Charlotte has contributed her talent and work to causes close to her heart: People’s Hospice, the American Lung Association, Duck’s Unlimited, West Virginia Health Right, Inc. and the Clarksburg Historic Society. She is a member of MountainMade and Tamarack.

Her work can be seen throughout West Virginia in various state parks (i.e Blackwater Falls) and select galleries.

Charlotte’s work is on display in Washington, D.C., in connection with fine art paintings she has been commissioned to paint for prestigious real estate developers.

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June Exhibit: Gerri Wilson Photography http://www.mountainmade.com/blog/june-exhibit-gerri-wilson-photography http://www.mountainmade.com/blog/june-exhibit-gerri-wilson-photography#comments Tue, 01 Jun 2010 22:00:04 +0000 Heidi Haldeen http://www.mountainmade.com/blog/?p=886 Gerri Wilson photography exhibit in June at MountainMade.

It was no surprise that photographer Gerri Wilson became a juried artist. She and her husband Bruce pursue their shared and joint passion in their Deer Run Studio in Canaan Valley, W.Va.

A fine art nature photographer working from her home and studio in the Canaan Valley of West Virginia, she specializes in vignettes, close-ups and landscapes of native flora in the Allegheny Highlands.

Gerri has spent much of the last year documenting the flora of the Beall Farm Tract I in the Canaan Valley for the National Wildlife Refuge. She currently captures images on a Canon 30D digital camera, most often from a tripod, and processes images using an iMac using Photoshop CS4 and Lightroom 2 and prints from an Epson R1900 printer.

Gerri pursued photography after a long career in music education. Accustomed to “stirring the pot” of the creative process with her students, she brings the same expectation of possibilities to nature photography.

Gerri is attracted to wilderness, hence her interest in native species and visible signs of natural progression in time and topography. She has studied technique and composition from Kent Mason and Ed Heaton and pursues her course of self-education in all parts of the process.

Gerri has won numerous awards in competition at the Canaan Valley Refuge, including taking first, second and third place for Refuge Scenery.

She is one of the winners of the 500th Wildlife Photography Contest at Canaan Valley National Wildlife Refuge honored in the June West Virginia Magazine. Be sure to check out Gerri’s full-page spread.

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Moving Day At MountainMade! http://www.mountainmade.com/blog/moving-day-at-mountainmade http://www.mountainmade.com/blog/moving-day-at-mountainmade#comments Tue, 25 May 2010 13:43:38 +0000 Becky Henderson http://www.mountainmade.com/blog/?p=863 The MountainMade Country Store has been consolidated with the Artisan Gallery in Thomas. Now you’ll have one-stop shopping in Thomas for everything including books, food products, toys, fine art glass and lots more. The Pottery Studio will also be moving to the Gallery location.

The MountainMade staff spent the week boxing, wrapping, loading and unloading hundreds of West Virginia made arts and crafts. We are pleased to report that nothing was broken.

MM Moving Day Collage

The Gallery is now ready for summer and overflowing with great gifts for all occasions – we’re sure you’ll be able to find the perfect gift for someone special or even for yourself.

The MountainMade Artisan Gallery is located on Douglas Road. After you pass the U.S. Post Office, take a right onto Douglas Road at the MountainMade sign. The Artisan Gallery is three-quarters of a mile farther along the road.

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New Hinkle Glass for Spring 2010 http://www.mountainmade.com/blog/new-hinkle-glass-for-spring-2010 http://www.mountainmade.com/blog/new-hinkle-glass-for-spring-2010#comments Mon, 19 Apr 2010 14:30:55 +0000 Heidi Haldeen http://www.mountainmade.com/blog/?p=658 It’s spring time and Ron Hinkle and his team at Hinkle Glass have been fast at work!

There is a fresh batch of tumblers (8 and 12 ounce) that are beautiful, sturdy and just feel good in your hand. He spoils us with small groupings of different colors and patterns that are lively and eclectic.  I had a couple in over the weekend who have been collecting. They have an eclectic set of 12 different glasses that they enjoy using every day for everything: water, iced tea and wine.

They loved the color, the feel and the integrity of each piece, and said, “We don’t worry about bumping and breaking.”  
We think Ron might be gearing up for a garden party as he shared three new pitchers with us: a Rainbow, Purple Swirl and Watermelon, each of which can stand alone or be paired with matching tumblers. What a great gift idea as wedding season is fast approaching.

And don’t forget about the return, by popular demand, of Ice Screamers. Fashioned after Hinkle’s Martini Glasses (we have a nice selection of those too), these are gorgeous little dessert dishes that make every day a special occasion.

There are a number of specialty items that make great and affordable gifts for the glass collector on your list: 3D paper weights, apples (paperweights and table top sun catchers), shot glasses (many customers use them for tooth pick holders too), vases and a new piece, the Nuclear Windstorm Bowl. An amazing swirl of reds, blues, black and more surrounded in a neon green. You’ve got to see it to believe.
And that is just in the Gallery.

Slip down to the Country Store and there’s more! Pick up a $6 Kiss or ponder a flying pig (available in two sizes for every pocket book), dolphin paperweights, soap/lotion dispensers and Hinkle’s ever popular child’s vase.

The bottom line is that beautiful, collectible glass should be affordable for everyone and Ron Hinkle has done just that. Enjoy!

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MountainMade Blue and Gold for our WVU Mountaineers http://www.mountainmade.com/blog/mountainmade-blue-and-gold-for-our-wvu-mountaineers http://www.mountainmade.com/blog/mountainmade-blue-and-gold-for-our-wvu-mountaineers#comments Fri, 09 Apr 2010 21:15:07 +0000 Becky Henderson http://www.mountainmade.com/blog/?p=529 We have several beautiful Blue and Gold glass pieces to pay artistic homage to the WVU Mountaineers.

We have several beautiful Blue and Gold glass pieces to pay artistic homage to the WVU Mountaineers.

Every West Virginian takes pride in the accomplishments of our basketball team. We have felt the “thrill of victory and the agony of defeat” with these outstanding young men, their coaches and staff.

To recognize the WVU Mountaineer Basketball team’s accomplishments, MountainMade features its blue and gold glass products this week. Perhaps you are looking for a graduation present for a special WVU graduate or a birthday present for an alumna. For West Virginians everywhere, blue and gold is always in fashion and never goes out of style.

Here are my favorite West Virginia University Blue and Gold glass pieces for the Mountaineer in your life:

Cobalt and Yellow Tumbler by Ron Hinkle
Cobalt Blue Water Bottle by Blenko Glass
Cobalt and Yellow Ice Screamers by Ron Hinkle
The Watercolor Bowl by Blenko Glass
The Blue and Gold Rondel Bowl by Ron Hinkle

As for our Team, enjoy the spring, we’re looking forward to next season.

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Donna Lohr | MountainMade’s March 2010 Exhibition Artist http://www.mountainmade.com/blog/donna-lohr-mountainmades-march-2010-exhibition-artist http://www.mountainmade.com/blog/donna-lohr-mountainmades-march-2010-exhibition-artist#comments Fri, 26 Feb 2010 21:27:10 +0000 Heidi Haldeen http://www.mountainmade.com/blog/?p=350 Throughout the month of March, MountainMade will be featuring an exhibition by artist Donna Lohr. Donna works in a number of mediums including fabric/felting, paper crafting, pottery, and basketry. It’s amazing that she finds time to fit her artwork into her busy life as wife, mother, and kindergarten teacher, but we are certainly glad that she does.

Donna Lohr has a unique interpretation of her real life, expressing it here in unique animal art fabric pieces.

Donna Lohr has a unique interpretation of her real life, expressing it here in unique animal art fabric pieces.

This is Donna Lohr’s third exhibition with MountainMade and we could not be more excited. She is a warm, funny and humble woman and artist. Her work is wonderfully whimsical and could be described as folk art, but it reminds us all not to take ourselves too seriously and live joyously!

I can see the impression that her students and kids (2 dogs and 3 cats) have on her framed creations. Each of Donna’s pieces is a one-of-a-kind original, signed by the artist. I have personally enjoyed the privilege of working with and getting to know Donna, but I’m going to let her speak for herself:

“Creating is often my time with God. I forget the world and time and create with the pure joy that my Creator must experience. My need to create has been part of my life for as long as I can remember, even though some of the forms this urge has taken of the years should really NOT be remembered… Most recently I have been a paper crafter, a potter and a basket maker. My Whimsical Woolies allow me to create small moments of joy to share with the rest of the world. Taking a fairly familiar saying or idea and giving it a whimsical twist is an ever entertaining challenge. The creature that ends up “personifying” each idea is a complete surprise. With each piece that is cut & placed the personality becomes more and more clear. When they make me smile we are finished.”

Recently, Donna has been exploring custom work. She’s found great joy in working with someone else to create the vision they have to something for someone they love.

If you find yourself in Tomas, WV during the month of March, please drop by to see pieces by Donna Lohr. Her unique style celebrates love and life.

Donna Lohrs Flash depicts one of those lovely little buddies that keep us company in life. I think we all know a cat like this.  A framed reminder to Live Out-loud!

Donna Lohr's "Flash" depicts one of those lovely little buddies that keep us company in life. I think we all know a cat like this. A framed reminder to Live Out-loud!

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