Local store caters to arts and crafters
Tucked away on a corner of North Haywood Street in downtown Waynesville, the Mountain Home Collection is a diamond in the rough for local arts and crafters.
Since Mary Edwards opened 23 years ago, the store has tripled in size, and continues to offer an extensive line of art supplies, home decor and a variety of art classes.
In comparison to big box stores moving in as competition, Edwards has remained competitive with her prices. Many of her art products are often 25 to 50 cents cheaper than retail stores, she said.
And she has plenty of products to choose from. Scrapbooking stickers and accessories line an entire back wall and another is covered in designer scrapbook paper. She also carries art products from paints to canvas to colored pencils and paintbrushes — almost anything an artist or crafter might need.
Edwards is an artist herself. Although much of her time is now occupied with taking care of things around the store, she once taught decorative painting.
“It was always my dream to own my own store,” she said smiling.
Now she uses her creative side to decorate and buy new items for the other side of the store, where customers can find a variety of home décor products to suit every taste, especially the shabby chic, log cabin home look. Scarves, wall and home décor and paintings are just a few of the items that can be found in the store. She is also the only place in the county to find the full line of Donna Sharp quilted purses.
In addition to the retail aspect of the store, Edwards offers several different arts and crafts classes catering to every age and skill level. Even regionally renowned artist Mark Menendez teaches students to draw or paint open medium portrait, landscape, still life, floral or wildlife.
Vicki Woodley, a Clyde resident, was working on her first painting under the direction of Menendez last week, as the mid-afternoon sun poured into the spacious art room at the store.
Painting has always been a passion for Woodley, but she needed some direction to get started.
“I knew I wanted to paint and I just felt like I was stuck,” she said.
Although she was nervous, she decided to sign up for the class to get some direction, and by the end of her first class, she had already improved.
“He’s just so inspiring and he can recognize potential in every student,” she said as she stroked her brush over the canvass.
Across the room, Barbara Wright, of Clyde, echoed her sentiments. She signed up for the classes in October, and said it’s been one of the most satisfying experiences.
“I don’t think people realize what he can offer,” she said.
Other classes include polymer clay, acrylic, water color and oil painting and jewelry making for beginners.
The newest class, taught by Edwards’ daughter, Jennifer Garrison, is called “Pinspiring Projects,” and is inspired by arts and crafts ideas found on the popular online pinboard Pinterest.
Each Monday night, Garrison takes on a new art project found on Pinterest, from painting to scrapbooking, jewelry making to home décor.
“It will be the perfect place for you and your friends to be inspired and enjoy all the "do you know what I saw on Pinterest this week?" talk you can stand,” Garrison said.
Of course those who want to attend the class don’t need to have a Pinterest account — you really don’t even need to completely understand what Pinterest is. All you need is a crafty personality.
Mountain Home Collection Art and Craft Classes
One stroke painting
Taught by accomplished local artist Susan Kirkendall.
2 — 4 p.m.
Students will need to provide their own paint and supplies
Art Class by Mark Menendez
With more than 30 years instructing experience, Mark will help you to master the medium of your choice, whether you are a beginner, intermediate or advanced student.
Learn how to draw or paint in: pencil, charcoal, colored pencil, pastels, watercolor, oil or acrylic.
Learn how to draw or paint:portrait, landscape, still life, floral, or wildlife.
10 a.m. — noon
2 p.m. — 4 p.m.
4:30 p.m. — 5:30 p.m. (young artists)
6 p.m. — 8 p.m.
Students should bring whatever materials are needed for the lesson. Mark will be happy to offer suggestions on what materials you might require to supplement your current selection, a discount will be given on materials purchased in our store.
Acrylics, water color and oil painting
Taught by Dominick DePaolo
1 p.m. — 3 p.m.
Taught by Jenn Reams
10:30 a.m. — 12:30 p.m.
Jewelry making for beginners
Taught by Barbara Merkle
10:30 a.m. — 12:30 p.m.
Weekend art workshop with Mark Menendez
Special colored pencil and other mediums, such as oils, acrylics and watercolors work shop.
2nd and 4th Saturday of every month
10 a.m. — 3 p.m.