Shannon Berrey

Mountain Heritage Day

Thursday, October 07, 2010

The last Saturday of September brings around 18,000 thousand people to the tiny mountain town of
 Cullowhee, NC. The campus of Western Carolina University has been the host of this
 'combination old-fashioned mountain fair and showcase for Southern Appalachain music dance
and song' for the past 36 years.

The great thing about Mountain Heritage Day is that it has stuck to its authenticity. From the beginning,
its goal has been to showcase the enormous talents of the artists of this area. All products must be
 handmade from  natural materials--no machine made, commercially made or imported items.
pretty great, huh?

As an artist, my favorite part of the fair is getting to watch the artisans producing their craft.
These men are hand-hammering pewter into plates for Riverwood Pewter.


I've long been an admirer of this blacksmiths work. He doesn't do the traditional fireplace
 tools and hooks but rather whimsical butterflies and these great hummingbirds
 and here he is made into a bird bath

{this is my birdstake with years of rich patina from living in our yard}

And another artist that I have purchased my fair share of pottery from is Brent Ragan from
 'In the Potter's Hand'. He showed up only a few years ago at local festivals, but became an
 instant crowd favorite. There is almost always a huge line to check out and just getting
 close enough to snap these pictures was tricky!


He uses leaves to make impressions in the slabs of clay. Then the clay leaves are built into
 beautiful and functional pieces. Before the final firing, a dark clay slip is sponged over the
 light-color clay to bring out the texture and veining.

I love that he only glazes the inside of the bowls leaving the outside with a great rough
earthy feel. And of course we can't ignore the great scripture that is stamped onto each piece
Aren't these fabulous!? 

{This one came home with me}

{ as did this one...}

Another local favorite is Riverwood Pottery ( they share the same craft circle with Riverwood Pewter)
The Barnes family have created their treasures in our area for years.

I love the jewelry that Karen makes. And, her prices are really reasonable.

{I have a few of these in my collection!}

If you like the pottery, try to make it to Dillsboro's Western NC Pottery Festival
the 1st Saturday in November.

My Canadian soulmate

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

I love everything about this tiny room featured in Canadian House and Home! The fabulous juicy color combo works so well due to the equal amount of crisp white. All of the vintage furniture is painted. If I had my druthers, I would paint just about every piece of furniture that comes my way! It is amazing how it breathes new life into pieces that have been around forever.

And on a side note---I am feeling a serious connection with the designer of the above room (I don't know who you are, but we need to talk!) It feels very much like the room I did in the Cashiers Showhouse. Check out the similarities!

The color combos, the graphic patterns in the curtains and pillows, the ribbon detail on the bedding, the super similar rug...

And on the other side of the 'canadian' room is this fantastic mirror:

now check out the mirror in MY room:

{MY mirror actually started out the exact color of the canadian one, but I chose to paint it}

Good job, my mysterious Canadian Designer Soulmate!! I like your style ;) 

69 seconds..

Monday, October 04, 2010

Sur-vi-vor : N. a person who has survived a great ordeal or misfortune;
a person regarded as resilient or courageous enough to overcome hardship;
to withstand and prosper. 
see also: my beautiful (cancer free!) MOM

We have all been affected by the 'C' word.

October is the month that I celebrate another year (20+)
that we can add to my moms 'cancer survivor' status.

Survivivor certainly applies to her. Mom decided to use her hardship to help counsel
 other women who suffer/have suffered the same fate. She has prayed diligently, wept silently,
and talked for hours on end to women who have grieved, survived, and many more who have not.
She accompanies them on their doctors visits and for some, she sits with them as the poison of
chemo enters their veins. She brings meals, she writes beautiful encouraging notes and she
advises in treatment plans. She is not a doctor or a nurse--just a survivor, a survivor who cares
 so deeply and so faithfully for every one of 'her cancer ladies' (as she refers to them)
Her empathy knows no limits.     

Last year, my daughter ran the 5K Westcare Smoky Streak in celebration of my mom:

{how great are these pink socks?!}

And a few years ago one of our dear friends, Mary, ran another
race in celebration of my moms successful battle.

But, there are those whose outcomes haven't been as fortunate.

'This year alone 1.3 million women will be diagnosed ;465,000 will die of the disease. On Sept. 30, to increase awareness and education of the grave statistic that somewhere in the world a woman dies of breast cancer every
69 seconds, the Susan B. Komen organization hosted a global social media event, gathering online supporters on all seven continents to take 69 seconds and promise to take action against the disease. Thousands of individuals from all continents took action to spread awareness and support.

The collective strength is needed of all women and men who want to see this disease relegated to the history books. In the three decades at Komen, they have made tremendous strides against breast cancer, funding research that has led to vastly improved survival rates for many early stage cancers, and more personalized treatments for advanced and aggressive disease. Over the next 10 years, Komen will invest $1 billion more to research, and millions more to educate women about their risks.

Komen knows that early detection saves lives, and they will fight to keep screening programs available to underserved women, because education and early detection are often a woman’s first and best line of defense against this disease'. (info from

Please visit their website. Get educated. Talk to your doctor. Learn about your treatment options. Join their advocacy efforts. We need everyone to promise to take an action to end breast cancer.

You better believe it!

Welcome Christmas?

Friday, October 01, 2010

It's happened it or not we have entered the 'season'....

Received these this week


I'm not sure that I'm ready to 'welcome christmas', but, I'm sure ready to welcome the weekend!!

Have a good one! 

Shannon Berrey Bio
I'm an artist, interior designer, wife and mom. Join me here as I share projects, ramblings, and inspirations.
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