Thursday, June 2, 2016

New Legacy, a face of hope in 
breaking the prison cycle

New Legacy, a face of hope in 
breaking the prison cycle: New Legacy is an organization committed to breaking the cycle of chronic recidivism for ex-offenders charged for nonviolent, nonsexual crimes.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

New Gather Handmade Shoppe in Bloomington Indiana

Since moving to Indiana and getting involved in the arts/artisan markets here, I've noticed a resurgence, and very well supported, movement back to handmade. Gather Shoppe is one of the latest to join this much welcomed group.
Like Home Spun: Modern Handmade in Indianapolis, Gather supports artisans through the sale of goods, workshops, and featured shows, for the emerging and established maker.

Keeping with the self-sufficiency movement, Gather opened much like the Bread and Breakfast artisan bakery, here in New Albany, with a Go Fund Me campaign. Both had humble beginnings, Bread and Breakfast at a roadside stand, and Farmer's Markets, Gather with Pop-Up shows titled Gatherings.

After a successful, and crowded, opening last month, Gather will be hosting it's first feature show titled Home.
Talia Halliday
From the press release: “The ache for home lives in all of us, the safe place where we can go as we are and not be questioned.” - Maya Angelou. This first Group Show at Gather will reach deep within the soul to ponder the meaning of what a home is to the various artists involved. From a bed made from books, to nesting bowls, to resting under leaves... The various modes of home confound and arouse us. 

 There are nine artists represented in the show: Katie Vernon, Vincent Desjardins, Joshua Allen, Kim Hahn, Lisa Wilson, Beatriz Vasquez, Talia Halliday, Lori Leaumont, and myself.
Michelle Amos
Show opens with an artist reception, Friday, October 3, from 5-8pm. Admission is free. Gather is located at 101 W Kirkwood Ave Ste 112, in historic Fountain Square Mall, on the south side of the square in Bloomington, Indiana. They sell the independent work of more than 70 artists, crafters, and makers from the Midwest and beyond. The work in the store ranges from handcrafted jewelry to bath and body, kids' toys, clothing, woodworking, illustration, knitted/crocheted work, and more. Can't make the opening? Shop hours: W-F noon - 5pm; Sat 10am-5pm; Sun noon - 4pm Phone: 812-785-1400

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Columbus, Indiana Ya'll

We visited Columbus, Indiana this weekend for ArtFest. It was so great to see this place in the daylight!
We've visited Columbus on many occasions, usually at night on our way back from Bloomington, Nashville, or Indy. It's a great place to stop, and eat at one of the al fresco restaurants. One of our favorites has been the Columbus Bar, for late night treats and delicious brews. It's set in a building from 1890, and features a horseshoe bar, resembling a trolley, built in 1941. This bar carries a lot of history, and includes outdoor seating.

On this occasion, we spent two days running our booth at the Columbus ArtFest. It gave us an opportunity to take turns visiting the downtown. My absolute favorite was visiting The Commons. The name says it all, a common meeting space in downtown. It includes a kinetic sculpture titled, Chaos, situated in the center of a bi-level meeting area.
This photo only shows the top half of the piece. The second floor, (sorry no pics), has a staged meeting area, where, they apparently hold some kind of church service on Sunday, and is available to rent. But this is only half of The Commons. It also includes any child's envy of an indoor playground.
Also found in this common space is a Subway Deli, near the indoor playground, and a sit-down restaurant. On the outside of The Commons are an Italian, and Irish restaurants, both with al fresco seating.

We were given information about Columbus in our show packet. According to their city promo brochure, Columbus is ranked 6th in architectural design, by a poll of members of the American Institute of Architects; sandwiched between Chicago, New York, San Francisco, Boston, Washington D.C., Portland, Seattle, Philadelphia, and Minneapolis. Crazy Huh? I have no idea if this is legit, but I will attest the architecture was interesting, but don't expect skyscrapers, expect more artsy, experimental -and amazing for the small size of the city.

Finally, I need mention Zaharakos, an ice cream parlor and museum. It claims to have been serving sodas, sundaes, and smiles for over a century. I'm pretty sure they offer more than sweet treats on the menu, but we never had the time to sample their wares. (For you old-school Louisvillians, it's everything Ferrall's wanted to be.)

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

M. K. Amos now at Homespun: Modern Handmade

photo from Indieana Handicraft Exchange Facebook page
One of the coolest events I participated in this year, was the Indieana Handicraft Exchange, "a contemporary craft fair that consciously celebrates modern handmade goods, the relationship between creator and consumer, and local, alternative economies." This Exchange was that and so much more! It was held in conjunction with the Independent Music + Art Festival at the Harrison Center for the Arts, so the entire festival/exchange, (sorry is was only one day), featured over one hundred vendors, local food, local craft beer, live music by DJ Eric Salazar (inside), and twelve bands on two stages (outside). WOW!

Homespun: Modern Handmade, located in the northeastern end of Massachusetts Ave, are the wonderful people behind all the fun.
photo from Homespun webpage
I was luck enough to meet one of these visionaries, Amanda Taflinger, shop owner/exchange organizer, when she approached me after the show, about carrying my work in their shop. So my work will now be featured with the other 200+ artisans represented, from all over the U.S. and Canada. And this shop is diverse with the unexpected finds, like artisanal foods, bath & body products, as well as, jewelry, apparel, housewares, and more. 

Homespun is not only a boutique and gallery, but also hosts workshops. Some recent workshops include jewelry making, product photography, how to run an Etsy shop, and more. If you'd like to check out the fun:

Homespun: Modern Handmade is located at 869 Massachusetts Avenue, Indianapolis, IN 46204.
(317) 351-0280 or check out their informative website at
photo from webpage
If you want to see more pictures of this year's Indieana Handicraft Exchange, check out their facebook page at:

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Art in the Loo

Amos' Woven Basket/Bowls on Urinal
In 1917, French Dadaist Marcel Duchamp entered a urinal in an exhibition to challenge the preconception about what art can be. The Craft(s) Gallery, 572 S. 4th St., is taking the concept a step further by hosting an actual art show in the gallery’s bathroom. “Art in the Loo” is an exhibition of new work by artists Suzanne Edds and Michelle Amos. The gallery will host an artists’ reception during the First Friday Gallery Hop on April 4 from 6pm to 10pm.

Suzanne Edds' Body Part Mandula Pieces above Urinal  
Edds, co-owner of Liberty Art & Tattoo, will drape the Craft(s) Gallery bathroom walls with a series of sensual images that have been printed on skin-like canvas and mounted on wood. Edds says the pieces were inspired by body parts, but she has focused so closely on specific shapes that the images have become abstract. Amos’ contributions are more utilitarian. She plans to fill the space with functional items like hand-stitched bowls filled with face scrubbies, ring dishes in spring colors, robes, and bed jackets.

Amos' Bath robe
Amos' dish with face scrubbies

Amos says the show came about because she and Edds both thought the colorful decorations and art hanging in the Craft(s) Gallery bathroom made it feel like an extension of the exhibition space. “We both love the bathroom at the gallery,” she explains. “We hope this show encourages people to look at the space, and maybe their own bathrooms, in a different way.”
All work will be available for purchase starting Friday, April 4 through April 30 at Crafts Gallery Only. 
Amos' decorative bathroom fabric piece with two nesting bowls and hand woven re-usable cotton balls Gallery is a contemporary and traditional art gallery created by Karen Welch and David McGuire in the summer of 2013. Craft(s) features fine artisan craft by local and national artists.
Craft(s) Gallery is housed in the historic Guthrie Coke building at 572 South Fourth Street at the corner of Fourth and Chestnut Streets in downtown Louisville, Kentucky.In the emerging neighborhood of SOFO, South Fourth Street, Craft(s) is positioned between the renowned Brown Hotel and the iconic Seelbach Hilton Hotel. Another historic neighbor of note is The Palace Theater.Hours:Monday–Friday: 10am–6pm; Saturday: 12-6pm;Closed Sunday
502.584.7636 (SOFO)

Thursday, February 20, 2014

How to Coil Basketry

This 'How to' is intended as a reminder for those who have already had a class with me. It covers a lot of material, and moves fast.

Materials: Jute, raffia, yarn needle

To Start a Coiled Basket, using the traditional figure 8 stitch.

hold raffia end and jute core together
and wrap the raffia around both the raffia end and jute core
wrap enough to make a turn
fold wrapped core end
hold core end and core together and wrap with raffia till end is covered
wrap core long enough to make a turn
turn wrapped core around center
make first stitch through center, wrap 4 times then get ready for next stitch
To make figure 8 stitch bring raffia between the wrapped cores
plunge needle through center 
after plunging needle through center, bring raffia back between the wrapped cores, before beginning 4 times wrap again
after you have done one coil around the center, you will begin to stitch into the next wrapped level instead of center

 To start/add a new piece of  raffia

hold finished end, with new raffia end to core 
then wrap finished raffia end and new raffia end with the core
Do the 4 times wrap, and get ready to make your stitch

How to make a lazy stitch.

For this stitch, your basically wrapping two cores together. Plunge needle in between the last two fully wrapped coils
After pulling needle up, wrap around new coil
Here you can see there are six lazy stitches, as I move around base

How to make a mariposa stitch

start with a lazy stitch
then wrap raffia around the stitch and plunge needle between the last two wrapped coils, right past the lazy stitch
come back around and get ready to wrap 4 times again
here you can see three mariposa stitches

How to add more core

trim on a diagonal the core from the basket, and the new core to be added 
lay the core from the basket, and the new core together
wrap both the core from the basket, and the new core together, be careful, the new core can easily slip out.
After wrapping about 4 times, carefully make a stitch, you'll continue this way
Remember the new addition can initially easily slip out; so continue to be careful as you wrap 4 times and then make a stitch, till you've made about 3-4 stitches past the addition

 How to go up with your basket

However you hold the core as you make a stitch determines the shape of a basket. To make a bowl shape basket, hold the core at a 45 degree angle as you stitch.

How to End Your Basket

trim end as at diagonal
Begin wrapping the core end with the coil below it.
Wrap until the core end is covered.