The Plum Nelly tradition
It began in 1947 at an outdoor art show held at Fannie Mennen’s house on the back of Lookout Mountain, Georgia. Ms. Mennen’s property had years earlier been named Plum Nelly when her brother-in-law, Louis Marks, after driving, what to him seemed a long way from Chattanooga, remarked, “Fannie, your place is plum out of Tennessee and nearly out of Georgia.” (Louis’s Virginia Tidewater accent was responsible for the change from nearly to nelly.) Only three hundred people attended that first show in the Plum Nelly Woods, but within a few years, the Plum Nelly show had grown to be a bona fide event, attracting as many as 20,000 Southeastern art lovers in a single October weekend.
The Plum Nelly Shop was established in 1972, the last year that the Plum Nelly Clothesline Art Show was held on the back of Lookout Mountain. For several years, the shop was owned by Fannie Mennen, her sister Celia Marks, Cornelia Burdeshaw and Liz Phillips. The shop’s day to day operations was primarily the responsibility of Celia Marks, and soon Mrs. Marks became the driving force behind the shop. Her name and Plum Nelly became synonymous, just as her sister Fannie’s name had for years been associated with the Plum Nelly shows. With help from her husband Louis, the Marks’ developed the shop into one of the region’s best craft shops. For them, there was no substitute for the best and it was this dedication to quality that developed the shop’s reputation.
In June, 1985, the Plum Nelly Shop was purchased by Joy Storey and Linda Hall. Ms. Hall’s involvement with the shop was brief and Jim Storey joined his wife, Joy, in the store’s operations. Several months later, Plum Nelly moved a half block into a new shopping complex, The Corner at Riverview. It occupied almost 3 times the space it had previously in its small shop location on Hixson Pike. Entire new categories of crafts were added; glass, jewelry and wearable art. Pottery, which had been a long-time Plum Nelly mainstay was greatly expanded. Plum Nelly had, within a short time, joined the ranks of the elite in American craft galleries. The formula for success was a continued dedication to quality, following the pattern started almost half a century earlier in the Plum Nelly Woods.
DanielsCatharineIn 2004 Beth Gunn bought Plum Nelly and kept the true vision that Celia Marks had established. Beth not only supported artisans, but wanted to contribute to the growth of Chattanooga. She hosted numerous fund raiser, donated to many charitable organizations, and gave back to the community in countless ways. In 2006 she moved the shop to it’s current location on Frazier Avenue. The Plum Nelly shop is currently owned by Catharine Daniels, the fourth in a continuous succession of women to own the shop since its inception. She continues the tradition of quality at Plum Nelly and invites you to sample a bit of Chattanooga history when you are looking for a unique gift or a treasure for your own home.
News from Our Regional Artists
321 Pottery is handmade, food safe and lead free. We make our own clay and glazes from scratch. Our pottery is high-fire stoneware that is fired to a minimum temperature of 2300 degrees, which is ideal for general household uses.
All 321 Pottery pieces are microwave and dishwasher safe. While it is tough and will last a lifetime, be smart about what you expect of it. Do not use harsh scrub pads to clean your pottery as they may scratch the surface. Pottery does not like sudden temperature changes; thermal shock can cause pottery to crack or break. Never use stoneware on a stovetop or open flame. Our pottery is oven safe, but always place pottery into a cold oven, then bring up to temperature.
Barking Spider Pottery
Rebecca Plummer and Jon Ellenbogen have operated the Barking Spider Pottery for over 35 years. Their passive solar home and studio is built above the Toe River in the North Carolina mountains. They have twin twenty-three-year-old sons, Alexander and Christopher.
Dock 6 Pottery
Dock 6 Pottery is a ceramics studio & gallery, specializing in distinctive handmade pottery, located in the Longfellow neighborhood of Minneapolis.
Pottery is meant to be enjoyed—both on a visual and tactile level. It should catch your eye on a table and should feel satisfying when you pick it up. I want my pottery to be the piece you return to over and over again and enjoy more and more each time you use it.
Liz Kinder's delicate bowls and vases are always surprising customers with their sassy, amusing descriptive cards, which we include with purchase.
Her career as a ceramicist began quite accidentally while selling her bicycle to chef, Joseph Manzare, who after seeing her pieces displayed in her home, promptly orders serving pottery and a large vase for his restaurant in San Francisco.
Since then, Liz has been inundated with orders for her ultra savvy and very un-IKEA pottery. Her colors are unlike anyone we currently carry. She now lives with husband, Tim, children, her kiln and a Siamese cat in Philadelphia. Where she says she is, "Becoming one of those boring people who talks about IKEA kitchen options, drywall, plumbing, utilities, mortgages, and the benefits of radiant heat." Kinder has a BA in Fine Arts from Amherst College in Amherst, MA and a Masters from the Ceramics and Glass department at the Royal Albert Hall in London
It is my desire for my pottery to be an extension of myself. When one first looks at my work, I am less concerned about the “WOW” factor, but rather compelled to seek the quieter, more reflective “whoa” factor that comes with truly observing my work.
There is a simplicity about my forms, yet they might not always be simple. I like to play with the duality of things. I hope one notices the movement expressed through the gentle lines and curves and transcendent qualities that defies time.
I believe that my commitment to exceptional, refined forms and honed throwing techniques and my layered glazes separates my work from others. It is my hope that when handling my pieces one can even sense a quality about them that just feels different. Ergonomics, functionality, beauty, integrity, and playfulness are things factor in when I create. I work very intentionally, intuitively and contemplatively and feel that the kind of energy I put into my pottery matters.
Many of my pieces are rooted in rich a history which stylistically and philosophically connects with Mid-Century Modern artists. In my glazes, I have selected a peaceful and more neutral pallet. They are layered (sometime up to 7 layers of glaze) and have depth - within individual pieces and within the whole collection. While not demanding attention, the simple beauty found in my work won’t compete with other pieces within your pottery collection; rather they might prove to be foundational or complementary.
Whether you are having a lovely dinner party for 12, or snuggling up on the couch eating in front of the TV, it is my hope you find the casual elegance of my pottery line will enrich your soulful moments and connections.
Sam Hitchman Ceramics is a full time, handmade ceramics studio with almost 20 years of experience, focusing on creating utilitarian wares which blend elements of fine design with functional craft. Following Sam’s graduation from Miami University, Oxford, OH, he worked in a few different clay based positions around the Cincinnati area. With the guidance of Lawrence Kearns, a full-time potter of over 10 years, Sam was able to launch his own business and in January of 2013, Sam Hitchman Ceramics was founded. Since Sam Hitchman Ceramics inception, he has participated in over 100 juried fine art and craft shows throughout the east coast and is represented by fine craft galleries in the Midwest
Unique and functional pottery pieces created by Susan from Front Porch Pottery here in Chattanooga.
Alex Marshall’s ceramics can be described as beautifully functional sculpture. Many have referred to her work as organic — an elegant mixture of art and chance. But she takes a highly skilled and deliberate approach to her art.
"I wanted to design a line which maintains the intent and authenticity of the individually handcrafted piece," says Alex. "Each piece retains its own integrity, seen in the slight asymmetry, while remaining a clean modern form." When stacked, her plates resemble layers of rock or the gentle lines of a palm frond. This paradox of strength and grace is exactly the juxtaposition with which she feels comfortable. Her signature glazes are layered in naturally composed earthy colors and texture.
Born in East Tennessee, surrounded by the beauty of nature and the incredible influence of grandmothers who were "makers of things", I developed an acute appreciation of art and nature. I have learned from and been influenced by several teachers, now and past, who have taken time to share and get excited along with me. Having worked in various mediums, making pots is a very special love. My pottery is wheel-thrown and handbuilt from stoneware and porcelain clays. I love fish and birds and perching them on top of my pots. I never fail to get a rush from modeling a carolina wren from Carolina clay. Working in clay is a passion that gives me satisfaction in an abundance of ways and continually teaches me.
I also make various other items: purses, totes and jewelry from recycled wool and leather clothing.
I live and work at my home studio in Chattanooga, TN where I balance an assortment of work and interests that make a full life.
We know choosing can be difficult, so we’ve put together groups of items we know work well together and support one another in a retail sales environment. Platters and bowls that can be interchanged always work well for those who enjoy entertaining. Bowl sets are especially welcome as wedding gifts. A few of the most popular colors are Red, Opal, and Sage green.
Lorraine Oerth says she always knew she was an artist. But it was being a studio potter that combined her love of sculpting, printmaking, painting, and designing. "I am fortunate to work with my family. Paula and Karl Oerth. We have an awesome team of skilled assistants who support the studio's atelier style workshop. We are so grateful that people like what we make. Were it not for our customers, we wouldn't be able to have all of this fun working with clay. Thank you so much." We are the Originators of the now-famous Giving Hearts & Giving Bowls — customers like that each is made one at a time. We offer hundreds of heartfelt words. Each comes with a story card. Also, a handprinted cotton bag sourced in the USA
My name is John Minkler and I've been making pottery for about thirteen years. All of my own work is made on the potter's wheel, but many shapes are altered or cut to create ovals, rectangles and squares. I enjoy the challenge of making objects that are not round yet still reflect the use of the wheel. Once the shapes are created great care is taken in adding handles, lids and spouts. I feel that these details are extremely important to the quality of the finished piece.
I find the objects that we use everyday are sometimes taken for granted, so it is a focus of mine to make pottery that is as visually interesting as it is practiced in use. In this spirit, I've created functional ware that brings life to an otherwise ordinary situation. So eat, drink and enjoy!
Michael Satterfield, founder of Satterfield pottery, is a studio artist with an M.F.A. from the University of Mississippi. As a graduate student, he attained knowledge in teaching Sculpture and Three-Dimensional Design classes to undergraduate students. Serving as a Teacher's Assistant and Graduate Assistant to the sculpture area during my graduate studies, these positions required lesson planning and implementation. Prior to entering the graduate program, he earned his B.F.A. in sculpture with a minor in photography from Delta State University. While earning his B.F.A., he also gained experience teaching art classes to elementary and junior high school students.
In the last two years he has been a Ceramic Artist and Instructor for the Oxford School District located in Oxford Mississippi, and has established a ceramic program, “Bolts”, for the Oxford School District. The program was established as part of our transition program in hopes that our students will be able to learn, create and become accessible in their future throughout everyday life.
Michael's roots run deep in the farmlands of the Mississippi Delta. He also spent several years in Ouray, Colorado in the San Juan Mountain Range in the Colorado Rockies. While living in these two such exclusive areas of the country, he developed unique skills working with many different mediums such as stone, ceramics, wood, paint, drawing, film, and metal works. His fascination with these facets have become the drive for his sculptural inspiration.
As owner and artistic director of the Terrafirma studio, Ellen’s creative focus is to design and produce high quality, functional works of art for the table and home using a unique, original process. Patterns are created by painting through textiles and lace using liquid porcelain to produce a distinctive “one of a kind” result. The base of warm, natural stoneware juxtaposed with vibrantly colored and patterned porcelain surfaces achieves the casual yet sophisticated look that has become her signature in both dinnerware and accessories.
Terrafirma products are made entirely by hand and kiln-fired to extremely high temperatures, giving each piece its own personality and great durability. Slight variations in color, texture and surface blushing are the natural and desired result of the hand building and high-firing process and assure each piece of its individuality.
Each collectible, copyrighted design is signed and dated. All Terrafirma pieces are food safe and dishwasher safe.
Care for your Terrafirma pieces as you would any fine china.
I'm a potter who loves to make things and likes to share them. I'll even leave things on beaches, in parks, gardens, and rest stops for people to find. I like to think of my work as my story. Each piece of art that I make is a feeling, a thought, or a small moment in my life that is screaming to get out. I love that I make things that are uniquely my own. In a time where anything you desire can be delivered to your doorstep with a click of a button, I love that I'm able to create things that require time to make. Tobe a maker in a world run by machines is incredibly gratifying. My work is my story. My work is me.
Thank you for your interest in Allan Ditton Pottery. Each piece is made of high-fired stoneware that is food-safe. Because each piece is designed and made by hand, no two will look identical. The matte textured terra cotta colored glaze found on the rims and tops of all our pieces are water-tight and food-safe. These pieces are safe for the dishwasher and oven, provided you place them in a cool oven and heat them up to cooking temperature along with the food. Mugs and bowls are microwavable safe. Bowls are available in either flower or grass patterns. All other pieces are available in either wavy or vertical patterns.
Bill Campbell has been a potter for over 30 years. Across the country, his porcelain is admired for its spectacular color and elegant, crisp forms...each piece maintaining some of the energy of its creator. The glazes dance with surprising vibrancy in unexpected patterns. Functional pots become little moments of celebration within the day to day routine.
Artist/Potter Tony Holman, his wife Debbie, and their daughter Maggie, own and operate Holman Pottery. Tony and Debbie opened Holman Pottery in 1989. In July 1998 the Holman's purchased an 1890 Victorian home (now commercial property) to house their studio and gallery.
The shapes of Tony’s vessels are functional but can simply be decorative. He covers a wide range of colors and pattern through brushwork and sponged-on design. Close attention is paid to the finished touches of this pottery including the way the handles are attached and Tony’s unique way of completing the lids and rims. Because Holman Pottery is hand crafted, no two are exactly alike. Therefore the variations of color, texture and shape lend to the artistic nature of this pottery and should by no means be considered defective.
Lookout Mountain Pottery
Mark Issenberg creates fine ash-glazed stoneware and is an award-winning potter. His functional and decorative pieces are widely exhibited throughout the South and East.
Mark is a long term member of the Southern Highland Craft Guild, whose mission is to discover, preserve and promote knowledge and appreciation of traditional and contemporary crafts of the Appalachian region. He is a member of Potters Council dedicated to meet the needs of studio potters and ceramic artists by providing forums for knowledge exchange and professional enhancement.
Pine Root Pottery
I make wheel-thrown, wood-fired functional pottery. Each piece is made by hand—a lot of the work is altered or assembled off the wheel. My work is a collaboration between me, the clay, and the fire. I work with the clay’s inherent qualities to make objects that are complimented through the wood firing. Processes in nature such as wind, gravity, and erosion inspire my work. Each pot is organic and loose in form while bold and defined in structure. Wood firing is an intensive process, physically demanding but worth the work. Wood fired pots demand attention and respect. They have unique characteristics that make each pot one of a kind.
Skyros Designs is delighted to offer you a simply exquisite collection of tabletop and decorative accessories from Portugal. Portugal is a country where the ceramic industry continues to strive to manufacture some of the finest ceramics in the world. The skilled artisans take extreme pride in their work and go to great lengths to assure we are offering our customers the highest quality products available. The warm friendly and gracious Portuguese are delighted to share their beautiful country, culture and rich heritage, lifestyle and traditions, all reflected through Skyros Designs products.
VIETRI preserves the celebration of handmade, heritage-inspired collections that support the history and craft of Italian artisans.
We work with some of the top clay and glaze manufacturers in the world who create exceptionally durable clays and high quality glazes. And, we are able to maintain their earthly balance of color, design, strength, and art. We are truly the work of many hands – from the clay to the molder, to the sculptor, to the painter, to the glazer, to the packer, to the shipper, to the salesperson, to the retailer, to you. No mass market. No mass production by metal machinery. Just materials from the earth, worked on by many hands, with a dedication to quality and beauty.
We find the attention to detail of our Italian artisans unmatched, the passion and pride unprecedented and felt in every piece. Our experience with this extraordinary talent began with a handcrafted ceramic dinnerware collection in 1983, and through the years we have created additional products in order to style the entire table, home, and garden. Although we have expanded upon the products we offer, everything we create is always inspired by Italy.
Modern and classic glass products for both the home and garden.
While a candidate for a degree in architecture, I satisfied an elective requirement in my curriculum by signing up for a ceramics class. It seemed like a good and creative change of pace. My nonchalance lasted only until I saw a pot being "thrown" on the potter's wheel. It was MAGIC! I was hooked!
My architectural training and years of professional practice strongly influence my design decisions for the ceramic pieces I make. My forms are generated from designs evolving from functions. Pots have purpose - they are to be used. I work with the hope that in the process of use my ceramic pieces will enrich not only those who use them, but also the purpose for which they are designed.
For nearly thirty years the Anthony Stoneware Gallery Collection of functional ceramic designs has been presented in the finest craft galleries and shops throughout the United States.
Coton Colors Pottery
How Coton Colors came to be...
It's amazing to think that painting a few cotton shirts for my family could pave the way to an incredible career. My passion in life led me to study art in college, but I never imagined I would be lucky enough to turn my passion into a successful business.
Working up from painting out of my garage, I eventually moved into a professional design studio where the business was finally able to come together. Early on, we focused mainly on cotton apparel, which lent direclty to our name, Coton Colors. As we grew, the business evolved to another level; pottery. Always a hobby of mine, the introduction of the pottery collection became a reality when friends enjoyed the plates I painted for my daughters and nieces. With interest being generated after the addition of the pottery line, our business began growing at a rapid rate.
We work in the wholesale and retail markets, owning our own retails shops as well as selling merchandise in stores nationwide. It has been our great honor to create designs for a wide variety of celebrities and charities, including the St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. Coton Colors designs are inspired by the celebration of life, with collectible pieces fit for every occasion.
We are constantly brainstorming to create new, enjoyable products to provide our customers with fresh and innovative designs, which are debuted throughout the year at wholesale trade shows.
Depsite the growth and expansion of our company, we strive to maintain an intimate atmosphere. With my parents and sister working alongside of me, Coton Colors has truly remained a family business. Small town charm combined with creative and quality products set Coton colors apart from the rest.
- Laura, Coton Colors
Fine melamine tableware for indoor and outdoor living.
Loving Hands Pottery
I am new to the world of pottery, but it has quickly become my passion. I have gone through a period of transition in 2012. I have been blessed to be able to work at home, but this has required me to develop new glazes (an entirely new color palette) and adjust to a different type of kiln. I enjoy making custom pieces for friends and loved ones because it allows me the opportunity to take the time to reflect on them and our shared memories as I work on their piece. Please enjoy the photos and let me know if I can create something for you. Loving Hands Pottery is the work of Jaime Lacey.
Salvaterra Pottery is an Asheville, North Carolina area pottery studio established in 1996 by Sue Salvaterra Hintz.
Sue’s work is mostly functional pottery, such as place settings, casserole dishes, bowls and oil lamps. Most recently she has started making cabinetry hardward after being approached by Liberty Hardware. This has been a huge step forward as you may now find her handmade knobs in selected Home Depot stores as of December, 2011.
Sophie Conran is the only daughter of designer and restaurateur Sir Terence Conran and food writer Caroline Conran. Sister to fashion designer Jasper, restaurateurs Tom and Ned and product designer Sebastian, Sophie is married and has 2 wonderful children.
Sophie left school early and worked through a variety of different jobs including working as an apprentice to Stephen Jones the couture milliner, working in Jasper’s fashion empire, running a supper club and delving into the world of interior design with various home and retail projects. She has worked as a buyer for the Design Museum’s shop and set up her own ‘corner shop of the world’ – Wong Singh Jones in Notting Hill.
After a couple of years living in Australia, Sophie returned to the UK and launched Sophie Conran Pies – a gourmet collection of handmade top quality pies – winners of 4 medals at the Great Taste Awards. This lead to her debut cookbook ‘Pies’ published in November 2006, ‘Easy Pies’ for Marks and Spencers and ‘Soups and Stews’ published in 2008.
March 2006 saw the launch of Sophie’s hugely successful range with Portmeirion. The range has won many prestigious awards and is now sold in 33 countries with the range ever expanding.
Sophie now works with many amazing companies creating stunning, well-known ranges. She partnered with Arthouse in 2008 to develop a range of wallpapers for B & Q and now also has luxury wallpaper design pattern books. In 2010 she joined forces with British cutlery manufacturer Arthur Price and launches her second full range design with them in 2016. 2010 was also the start of her relationship with Burgon and Ball and their ever-growing range of garden tools and accessories.
SophieConran.com was launched in 2013 and brings Sophie’s licensed ranges together with exclusive collections that she has developed and curated from suppliers and manufacturers all over the world. Sophieconran.com is now a go-to destination for the whole home with exciting new launches happening all the time.
Wolftever Creek Pottery
Colorful and functional pieces that make wonderful gifts.