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Thursday, February 19, 2009

From Pieces to Pieces: Local Upcycling

My friends, Kate and Shane Jarrett, who are the resident potters at the Sangre De Cristo Arts and Conference Center make absolutely wonderful work. Aside from their seasonal sales and my favorite, their Kiln Opening event nights, their work can be seen and purchased or sampled at Wireworks Coffeehouse down on the beautiful Historic Arkansas Riverwalk.


Yep, sampled. That's because Wireworks Coffeehouse exclusively uses Jarrett Pottery for all their coffee mugs, cups, and demitasse's, saucers, plates and bowls. This comes from the business and community ethics of the owner, Ann Chenu, who wants her small, local business to be a part of the local economic circle of small, local, and ethical businesses like hers. There are many reasons to support your local and small businesses, for one, their your neighbors. Another reason is that it allows you to enrich your community by supporting the parts of it you want to see thrive. But, like i said, there are inumerable reasons for keeping it local and low scale.

Well, Wireworks Coffeehouse goes through their share of Jarrett Pottery, for as any restauranteur knows, breakage is a major expense. Mugs are especially vulnerable to being dropped or knocked off tables or bonked against the edges of counters.

I have been collecting the Jarretts work for some time, mostly in my home where it now comprises the majority of my crockery. I love their rich warm colors and lustrous glazes. They have a wide variety of color combinations, but i have my favorites.

But i have also been collecting the broken crockery from the coffeehouse. I plan to cut the broken pieces into "cabochons" i can set in silver for rings, pendants and bracelets. I am especially in love with some of the glazes used around the rims of the mugs and edges of the plates.

This will be very attractive jewelry which will place portions of the Jarretts work into silver time capsules where they can be admired and cherished on into the years. It is a great way to recycle or, rather, upcycle local resources. It will also give Wireworks lovers a wonderful memento to remind them of the times and warmth and laughter they have shared, the plans and friends they have made down at the coffeehouse.

It will aslo keep all that Jarrett Pottery from filling our local landfil . . . although, a landfill full of Jarrett Pottery wouldn't be such a bad thing. Beautiful, in fact! Ah, if only that were the case, we should be so lucky.

to contact Jarrett Pottery

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