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Magic at the Museum

Updated: Nov 15, 2021

Greetings, oh beautiful Fogbarrow Followers! I'm Melody, teller of bad puns and the leatherworker of the collective. We've just barely started here at the Barrow Blog and we already have some exciting news. Thanks to some wonderful networking friends we were able to apply for a space at the Museum Center at 5ive Points Gift Shop -- and we've been accepted!! Much to our delight, Fogbarrow wares are now officially available in our first brick and mortar location. We are incredibly grateful for the opportunity and are keeping a healthy stock of ceramic pieces, prints, stickers, and leather work in our little home away from home. The Musuem's address is Cleaveland, but it's just a tiny hop away from downtown Chattanooga!

Hulon, the shop curator, was such a pleasure to spend time with while we picked through product to see what pieces of ours would work best with the art around it and the overall space. While the work in the Gift Shop is extremely varied (oil and acrylic paintings, local honey, pottery, woodwork, handmade soap, jewelry, fiber art...I'm sure I'm missing some!) every bit of it is curated within a 150 mile radius of Cleveland itself. This lends itself to the "Uniquely Local" slogan, and many artists in the shop boast regional and national acclaim via juried shows, publications, and awards. I have to say, when I went to deliver some of our work I was really quite shocked at how beautiful the space was. One doesn't often find classy, comfortable spaces attached to museums. Just look at this adorable display unit they made with tables!! The whole shop is full of stunning work that creates a cozy atmosphere you can really lose yourself in. Plus, if you're local or a frequent visitor, Museum Center members receive a 10% discount on all the work in the shop!

​The Museum Center at 5ive Points also offers classes from artists in the community. In fact, I'm elated to say that I'm teaching a Tooled Leather Bracelet course there on May 25th! Non-members can enroll for $45, and Museum members enroll for $30. We'll be making sturdy snap-closure cuffs starting off with just a strip of leather, so it can be entirely customized by the students. I've taught this class many times both at the Knoxville Arts and Fine Crafts Center and at The Basement, an art center in the heart of Knoxville Old City district. I always love seeing what people create and I learn something new every time I teach. I'm especially looking forward to teaching in Cleaveland at the Museum Center because it will help me learn more about what kind of artistic community they serve. Here's the link for anyone interested, and if you have any ideas of classes you'd like to see please post them in the comments!

Now, just having our work in a physical location was exciting enough, but when I was researching everything the Museum Center did I was delighted by how involved they are in their area.

They offer a ton of cultural events in the area. Music Under the Stars serenades attendees with both acapella and orchestral delights, a History Happy Hour is available for locals and visitors to connect with the history of the region, then the Stitches in Time Quilt Show and multiple Galas round out their selection of entertainment. If you're in the Chattanooga/Cleaveland area or might be passing through, I highly recommend checking out the website below for more info about those special events as well as the current exhibits gracing their walls. Lindsay, the curator, has a slew of exhibits in place that showcase specific areas of fashion and history. From sewing machines and fabrics to selections of items once offered by local shops in years gone by, they are a treasure trove for learning more about the how's and why's of vintage fashion. I'll definitely be exploring their halls after I'm done teaching the bracelets class! (Isn't their website gorgeous? Their social media overlord Courtney must be a sorceress. You didn't hear it from me though.)

We are just so ecstatic to have been offered a physical space to showcase and sell our artwork, and for it to be such a lovely and immersive venue was simply perfect. Thanks for spending some time with us, and we'll see you on our next post here at the Barrow! Till then, walk the wild path my dears. -Melody

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