This year’s line-up features an exciting mix of returning and newcomer artists with a wide variety of works ranging from ceramics to jewelry, to soaps and candles. “We love to give new artists a chance to expose our Festival audiences to their work” said Candace Casey, WCC Gallery/Gallery Store Director and organizer of the Holiday Festival. “The creative energy is alive and well at the Craft Center. Our artists and guests alike can expect to be regaled with work representing the finest of handmade American Craft and they will not be disappointed!”
Artists participating this year include: Carol Tripp Martens (Ioka Pottery), Andy Osborne (Beaded Dragon Artisans), Virginia Stevens (Virginia Stevens Designs), Ann Szerlip (Ann Szerlip Glass Designs), Mary Risley (Mary Risley Jewelry), Aaron Slater (Aaron Slater Glass), Betty Barrett (B.Barrett Jewelry), Laura Pierce (Iris Designs), Samir Dhamija (My Mez), Sibel Alpaslan (Ceramics by Sibel), Jan Franco (JMF Dezigns Exquisite Jewelry), Kathy Litchfield (Firecrow Handwovens), Libby Boss (Teesies), Nancy Marland Wolinski (Nancy Marland Jewelry), Allison Glick (Allison Glick Ceramics), Trish Kozub (Idazz Custom Designs), Frank Dobai (The Shade Tree, LLC), Michelle & Bill Champitto (Fresh Cut Glass), Reid Gilmore (Central New England Woodturners), Marcy Schepker (Pear Tree Studio), Peter Jones (Mountain Street Pottery), Doug Burritt (Harbor Sweets), J.Ann Eldridge, Betsy Keeney (Centre Village Studio), Lauren Beaudoin (Creative Dexterity), Sarah Michalik & Noah Weinert (Charged Glassworks), Erica Walker (Erica Walker Jewelry), Marian Ives (Ives Ornaments & Weathervanes), Carol Joannidi & Dana Hunt (Little Cat Metals), Michael Gadsby (Custom Wood Works), Linda Williams (Country Weaver Designs), Vartus Varadian (Vartus Designs), Ania Davis (EPOCA), Melissa Rioux (DAFNI Greek Gourmet), David Pollack (Maggie’s Farm), Elizabeth Ryan (Looka Jewelry), Renee Mallett (Amaranth & Rue), Joshua Swalec (Ferromorphics Blacksmithing), Carole Michelfelder (Taproot Threads), Nancy E. Burke (Quicksilver Glass), Kim Cutler (Kim Cutler Ceramics), Alison Cargill (Alison Designs LLC), Heather Bevilacqua (Grinns), Aisling Colleary (Horizon Line Ceramics), Lauren Blais (Lauren Blais Design), Tracy Levesque (Tracy Levesque Fine Art), Hillary Hutton (Hutton Handwovens), Suzanne & Steven Rosendahl (Teagan & Ash), Marcia Press (Meshugenah Hat Company), Marianne Janik (Calli B), Mark Hutton (Hutton Studios), Patrick Zephyr (Patrick Zephyr Nature Photography), Jennifer Moran (Gracies Gunnies), Nancy Engle (Goodness Remedies), Susan Swift (Swfit Farms), Caroline Golden Kirkland (c.e. golden), Kristin Kearns & Len Keeler (AnglerFish Jewelry), Heather Kidson (Heather Bell Designs).
Sponsored by UniBank and Patrick Motors, the Festival continues the tradition of the Worcester Center for Crafts as an economic engine for artists and helps advance the Craft Center’s mission to inspire and build a creative community. The Festival also serves as a logical partner in the Buy Local and Eat Local movements of the last decade, by featuring hand-made decorative and functional works exclusively in an environment where you can meet the maker, you can take your time, and the artist can personally assist you.
“The Festival has become a Worcester-wide tradition for folks,” says Candace Casey. “It is our pleasure to promote the best of American handmade craft.”
Open year round, the Worcester Center for Crafts Gallery Store will also be open during the Festival to further showcase and represent more than 400 artisans from all over the country.
Festival goers are encouraged to give the Gift of Craft this season. Gift cards purchased in the Gallery Store are eligible for purchases in the Store as well as for registration for a variety of classes and workshops. The Craft Center offers educational programming for adults and for youth in both multi-week classes and short-term workshops, through which you can learn and develop the essential skills of making with glass, metal, enamels, clay, and more.
About the Worcester Center for Crafts
The Worcester Center for Crafts (WCC) is one of the oldest non-profit institutions for craft study in the United States. Founded in 1856 as the Worcester Employment Society to help immigrant women produce and sell handcrafted wares to support their families, the Center evolved into New England’s leading center for craft education, exhibition, and entrepreneurship. In 2004, the organization expanded and opened the New Street Glass Studio- an off campus, 8000 square foot state-of-the –art multi-studio glass facility. The WCC offers the only comprehensive glass studio program in New England available to the public. Through an affiliation begun in 2009, the WCC is home to the Worcester State University’s visual arts studios.
The Craft Center’s mission: The Craft Center's mission is "to inspire and build a creative community" by providing high-quality craft education and training, by supporting craft artists in their professions, and through advocacy and public education initiatives including adult education classes and workshops, exhibitions showcasing the work of established and emerging artists, artist residencies, lectures, family events, studio rentals, Gallery Store, its Youth Craft + Creativity program and major events. The WCC is a member of the Worcester Cultural Coalition and receives funding from the Massachusetts Cultural Council.