A growing house

Artists, craftsmen increase Santa Mouse shopping opportunities

If unique, handcrafted gifts are on your holiday shopping list, then the Blount County Library is the place to be next week.

The Blount County Arts and Crafts Guild is having their Third Annual House of Santa Mouse in the event rooms in the Blount County Library, located at 508 North Cusick Street in Maryville. The House of Santa Mouse, which is a holiday sale of handcrafted works from members of arts and crafts guild, will be open on Thursday, Nov. 29, from 2 to 8 p.m., Friday, Nov. 30, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and on Saturday, Dec. 1, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Cassandra Chavez, member of the guild, the success of last year’s event has caused the House to grow to twice the size of previous years, with 40 guild members displaying and selling their works.

“Last year, the customers were happy with the variety and the quality of works,” Chavez said. “They also like that its local artists and handmade pieces.”

Some of the pieces available for purchase at the sale include handcrafted jewelry, needlework, stained glass, dolls and paintings, both watercolor and oil. Holiday items such as Christmas wreaths, floral arrangements and hand-painted Santa Clause gourds will also be on sale.

Unique items like the charms and jewelry that Chavez makes with old typewriter keys will be available. Guild member David Fox,makes one-of-a-kind recycled art from computer parts.

“His computer bugs are one of the cutest things that I’ve ever seen,” said House of Santa Mouse coordinator Loris Colborn.

The House of Santa Mouse also serves as a fundraiser for the guild. This event not only raises community awareness of the group, but it also raises money for the Blount County Arts and Crafts Guild scholarship fund. The scholarships allow guild members to take art courses. Then, armed with knowledge, the member teaches other Guild members some of the techniques learned through the course.

To make shopping easy at the House of Santa Mouse, customers can shop at various vendors but can check-out once, paying by cash, check or by Visa or Mastercard.

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