Non Profit of the Month!

March 29, 2013

Patton McDowell & Associates deemed HandMade in America in September of 2012 and somehow we didn’t find out about it until just recently!

“Patton McDowell and Associates’ mission is to elevate nonprofit organizations through careful planning, unique strategies, creative fundraising and dynamic staff and board development. The PMA Blog covers various nonprofit, fundraising and philanthropy news, in addition to thought leadership pieces and case studies. Our blog aims to explore the intersection of nonprofits, philanthropy, technology and innovation.”

We are all so proud to be a part of an organization whose work is truly creating opportunities and affecting economic change all across WNC and beyond. Recognition like this plays such an important role in helping us to connect to a wider audience who may benefit from the services of our organization, so Thank you!

CLICK HERE to read the article about HIA!


Friday night was unbelievable. Our gallery was filled to the brim the entire evening with people who are passionate about Western North Carolina Craft. We are so fortunate to live in an area where Fine Craft is as appreciated as it is prevalent, and the turnout we had Friday night evidences that our community is thriving. We had between 150 & 200 people in attendance throughout the night and almost all of the artists were able to make it. There is just nothing better that being able to ask the artists themselves about their pieces.


If you weren’t able to make it out Friday night but would like to learn more about the artists and their work, please visit the links below!

Anna Johnson
Jeana Eve Klein
Janet Williams
Gwendolyn Bigham
Kenn Kotara
Sondra Dorn
Dustin Farnsworth
Hayden Wilson
Rachel Meginnes
Sam Reynolds
Robin Johnston
Kathie Roig
Heather Allen Hietala
Ben Elliott
Austin Richards
Michael Parry

HandMade in America is pleased to announce the upcoming opening of its new exhibition, Breaking Ground: Innovative Craft. Opening reception will take place on Friday, March 8, from 5:30- 8 pm to celebrate the work of regional artists. This exhibit, running from March 8- June 30, is supported by the N.C. Arts Council, a division of the Department of Cultural Resources, Starbucks and Windgate Charitable Foundation.

“What is innovation in art? Perhaps it is a willingness to fail or make mistakes in service to fearless creativity. ‘Breaking ground’ by definition, engages the unfamiliar and is key to an innovative studio practice.”
-Kathryn Gremley


Breaking Ground: Innovative Craft features the work of WNC craft artists who are pushing the boundaries of their medium in unexpected ways. Featuring 26 works in clay, fiber, glass, metal, wood, or mixed media, the pieces in this exhibit illustrate a balance of craft processes and unique ideas, combining tradition with innovation.

Artists featured are: Michael Parry, Austin Richards, Jeana Eve Klein, Janet Williams, Gwendolyn Bigham, Kenn Kotara, Sondra Dorn, Dustin Farnsworth, Hayden Wilson, Rachel Meginnes, Robin Johnston, Sam Reynolds, Kathie Roig, Heather Allen Hietala, Ben Elliott and Anna Johnson

If you haven’t seen Kenn Kotara’s braille poetry piece, in the eyes of memory, Stacks by Hayden Wilson, or Dustin Farnsworth’s Saint Anne’s Theatre, you are in for a real treat. These are just a few among a slew of beautiful pieces.

in the eyes of memory, Kenn kotara 01.bSaint Anne's Theatre, Dustin Farnsworth_01Stacks, Hayden Wilson 02

CSA: Community Supported Art!

February 27, 2013

We are so excited here at HandMade about this new business incubator program, and apparently, so is the Mountain Xpress! Click HERE to see the write-up online…

csa big

Over the last 20 years, Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) has become a popular way for consumers to buy seasonal food directly from local farms. With that buy-local spirit in mind, Community Supported Art is a similar endeavor to support regional craft artists and collectors.

We are seeking craft artists to launch our inaugural Community Support Art (CSA) program. Our local CSA program is modeled after the Community Supported Art project created by Springboard for the Arts and in Minnesota, where it continues successfully season after season.

Join us in becoming the first Community Supported Art program in North Carolina!

Vist our homepage HERE

An e-mail came our way today from RiverLink that I wanted to share with you because it sounds like a really great opportunity for education, networking, and community! Some of you may be wondering how this is relevant to you being that we mainly provide resources specific to craft artists and economic development that stems directly from a strong craft economy, but there is a common thread. In fact, there are enough threads to make a blanket. 

During the series, conversations will include information about the environment, politics, and environmental legacies; all of this is important to craft artists and artisans. For all you fiber people out there, what would happen if the environment became inhospitable to the plants you use for natural dye, or the grass became inedible to the sheep you use for sheering to spin your own yarn? Painters, if you use natural pigments, you also have a stake in the condition of the environment. So many of the changes we need to preserve our beautiful mountains and bodies of water, and to protect our wildlife, are implemented through policy that is decided by local and federal government. It’s important to engage at a local level to get to know the representatives who will be making the decisions that affect your lives, your businesses, and your craft. 

You never know who might be listening, so please consider joining Riverlink for their Friday Salon Series, to be a part of an important conversation.


Here’s their Press Release…

Seats are going quickly, but there is still time to sign up for first Friday Salon of 2013.

RiverLink is pleased to present the first of a stimulating five-part seminar series by Dr. Frank Kalinowski from 3 to 5 p.m. on Friday, February 22.  This first seminar, taking place at the RiverLink offices, is titled “A Practical Solution to the Environmental Crisis: The Scope and Range of Environmental Politics.” The purpose of these interactive lectures is to explore a deeper understanding of environmental issues and to attempt the placement of these issues in a larger social, political and historic context.

Kalinowski is a retired and popular professor from Warren Wilson College and the author of numerous articles and treatises that are thought provoking and informative about the complex world in which we live today. 

The dates for Salon Series are February 22, March 22, April 26 and May 31.

Future dates and topics include:

  • March 22, “The Constitution and the Environment”
  • April 26, “Political Vision and the American Founding: The Tensions Between Logic and History”
  • May 31, “Two Dreams and a Nightmare: The Environmental Legacies of Thomas Jefferson, Alexander Hamilton and James Madison.”

This series is free and open to the public but reservations are a must, email to reserve a spot.

RiverLink is a regional non-profit working to revitalize the French Broad River as a place for everyone to live, work and play. The RiverLink office, the site for this series, is at 170 Lyman Street in the River Arts District of Asheville.  

Located in Asheville’s River Arts DistrictRiverLink is a regional organization spearheading the economic and environmental revitalization of the French Broad River watershed as a destination where everyone can work, live and play.   

For more information about how you can get involved, see our Web site:, or contact us at or by phone at 252-8474.


headshot1-180x180Come join AWE in welcoming Richard Handy to the next Asheville AWE Meeting.  Richard is an actor, dancer,  director, teacher & choreographer for The New York Studio for Stage & Screen in Asheville.  He has studied theatre & dance in both England & Atlanta, GA.   Richard has also studied at the Actors Movement Studio in NYC and has been teaching passionately for over 15 years!

He is going to be telling his story & helping you to write yours.  Come learn from a professional how to tell your story!

Please bring a piece of work with you.

Meeting is from 6-8pm

See you there!

Survival Marketing Workshop

February 11, 2013

2. I’m presenting an informative, fun seminar for Asheville SCORE on Saturday, March 2, from 9 a.m.-12 noon.
Topic: Survival Marketing

To be covered:
* Utilize positioning to develop an elevator speech for your business.
* Develop marketing strategies that make you unique from your competition.
* Apply the Four-mula 4 Success and develop an action plan to use it.
* Know how to best utilize the YOMBER Principle in dealing with customers.
* Evaluate what media to use, including social media.

(Applicable to those in business . . . thinking of starting a business . . . or who just want to market themselves; e.g., for going for a new job, helping a non-profit organization, etc.)

Location: ABTech campus in Enka

Cost is just $30 and you can save $5 by pre-registering. For more information or to register, please click:

You’ll have a chance to win $500!