John produces both guitars and lap dulcimers form native hardwoods, as well as open-backed banjos with a unique bell-brass pot. His dulcimers are in the traditional North Carolina, teardrop shape. All his instruments are one-of-a-kind and built to the playing preferences of their owner. The “off-cuts” from his instruments are made into a variety of woodenwares.
My forging experience began the summer of 2003 when a good friend of mine, woodworker and blacksmith, Jason A. Lonon, began sharing with me the pleasures of working hot metal. My efforts to learn were rooted in the self-reliance lifestyle I had taken on. My early projects included knives, hatchets as well as the obligatory wall-hooks and S-hooks. For a long time, I forged just for the experience, and took advantage of lessons, classes, and meetings in my area. I mainly forged products I could use in my daily life until I opened my own shop 2012 and started offering work to the public through festivals, craft shows and online sales. In 2016, I started developing several production items, and continued to forge custom commission works.
Growing up in the countryside of Wilkes County, I spent many of my early years surrounded by native plants, flowers, and wildlife. My parents were avid gardeners and nature watchers, especially of our wild feathered friends. My father, whose career was horticulture and plant science, immersed and educated me in the fine and fascinating details of growing fruiting and flowering plants and trees. My love of nature was planted early and has influenced my art throughout my life.
I specialize in small production and one-of-a-kind pieces of handmade jewelry that is best described as simple, elegant, wearable jewelry with an eye for organic movement and feel. Living in the mountains of North Carolina, my jewelry designs are influenced by the landscape and natural organic shapes and colors around me. Designs emerge that are unique and elegant blending with everyday casual; comfortable like your favorite pair of jeans.
Lyle Wheeler is a chairmaker, blacksmith and all-around good ol' boy from Millers Creek, Wilkes County, NC. He has been creating utilitarian objects of art and desire since before he can remember. Working in the period of the late 1800s, his furniture is handcrafted, and bench made from native Appalachian hardwoods while his ironwork is forged from mild steel. Lyle is a professional whimmy-didler and communicates by postcard, one stamp at a time.
Best known for her colorful acrylic mixed media paintings Marion’s process involves creating layers, applied in non-traditional ways, using pouring, papers, monoprints and found collage elements. Her subjects range from vivid abstracts to semi-abstracts of landscapes, flowers and figures. Figurative works showing the face without features make Marion’s style uniquely her own. Her approach is to explore, take risks and be open to the unexpected.