Three years ago, Jim and Ellen were determined to have a place to locate their artwork in their island community in Vermont. They set about to purchase a farmhouse that had seen much better times! In fact, it had been left open, literally, to the weather for over two years. For Jim and Ellen, it was love at first sight. They hardly noticed the tumble down cow and wagon barns built in the 1790s or the driveway the ended right AT the porch.
All they saw were the bones of the building with brightly painted walls and a huge restaurant quality stove in the middle! The farmhouse was deemed perfect and they set off to purchase it. The concept – build a gallery and cafe space that would give Vermont artists a unique place to show their art work. Create a commission schedule that favored the artist first – while still hopefully paying the bills. Make the art space a destination that would entice folks from “off-island” on to the island, increasing the economic vibrancy of not only the gallery itself, but also the islands as well.
The dream is almost complete. Grand Isle Art Works now supports over 65 Vermont artisans featuring art work from many different medias. Jim and Ellen are working around the clock to create “the” destination feel for this art space.
And it’s working…except…the gallery sits on a hill on a piece of State highway with a speed limit of 50 mph. Our current sign is old and drab and blends into the background. We have been told over and over again, “We would have stopped but we didn’t know you were there.”
Enter gallery artist, Amey Radcliffe and her new invigorated interpretation of our gallery logo – bright, sunny – impossible to miss if it were to be on a sign. Add Amey’s logo for our Cafe at the Gallery…and now we’ve got something special.
The wooden sign posts are there. But we need Amey’s graphic designs turned into new signs! That’s where you come in…Help us make this gallery a true destination — we need to brand this labor of love!
Finally – we have two wee little ones – still to be named! Two little girls, one each from Olive and Gingko. Clyde is a very proud papa! He is “away” at summer camp in Grand Isle at Grand Isle Art Works for the summer. We are still waiting on mamas, Larch and Apple.
Today was an absolutely beautiful day. A day that came after 2 other beautiful days! We took our yellow dogs for a walk – no small feat as they are hardly ever on a leash – scooped up our friend, Karen and headed for water! Utter joy!
This weather is wild and hard on your spirits. One day it is 50+ degrees, the next 10! The sun is shining here today on our latest dusting of snow!
Jim has been turning wood over the past few weeks – a couple of yarn bowls have found the light of day! He is also on duty at our gallery: Grand Isle Art Works throughout the week. No rest for the wicked in this family. If you are in the islands and hoping to find products made by Yellow Dog Farm – be sure to head there. The gallery is located at 259 US Rte 2 in Grand Isle. It is a wonderful place to stop, visit, even catch a bite to eat in the kitchen door cafe! We’d love to see you!
We have a bit of snow on the ground and a nip in the air – it is “finally” winter in Vermont. It has been a long time coming. The goats and alpacas are growing fleece rapidly these days as they keep up with the increasing cold temperatures. The chickens just carry on – how do they stay warm?
Soon, I’ll be making mittens – my January evening past time these days. Weekends will be for dyeing yarn! We have boxes back from our spinner – more than enough to get started. If we are smart we will be sending out more of our spring fleece to be processed soon, too. And Jim…we be making YARN BOWLS. Lots and lots of yarn bowls. His plan is to “get ahead” of it all! Hah! We will see how well both of us really do! Spring seems to come much more quickly these days and with it our list just seems to grow and grow!
Happy New Year from all of us here at Yellow Dog Farm!
It is colder here now, dark so much earlier. But no snow to speak of and I have a hyacinth bulb blooming at our little gallery: Grand isle Art Works! I hate to think what THAT means in the whole scheme of our weather!
Jim is in the barn – turning Christmas gifts! Very soon we will be rearranging the animals – we are hoping for babies this spring. Clyde will be smiling soon!
We are all in a twitter here in South Hero getting ready for the Vermont Sheep and Wool Festival….THIS WEEKEND! Where did the time go? Jim has been turning yarn bowls all week and I have been spinning some new “designer” yarns. We are as ready as we can be.
This year Jim is bringing his small lathe and will turn drop spindles for his adoring fans! He will be out in front of Dodge Hall under cover – let’s all cross our fingers for the weather!
So, are you interested? The Vt Sheep and wool Festival is at the Tunbridge World’s Fair Grounds.
The 23rd Annual Vermont Sheep and Wool Festival
October 1 & 2, 2011, taking place as scheduled
Tunbridge Fairgrounds, Tunbridge, VT
The Tunbridge Fairgrounds sustained no damage in the hurricane and is operating on schedule.
Need directions: CLICK HERE
Saturday 10:00 am – 5:00 pm, Sunday 10:00 am – 4:00 pm, rain or shine
$6.00 for adults, $5.00 for seniors, $1.00 for children under 12
Yellow Dog Farm is a small business. When something like Tropical Storm Irene passes through, I cannot imagine what a small business can do…
The devastation and the costs to continue are so high – in people hours and money.
Yellow Dog Farm was lucky – for this storm we sat high upon a rock in the middle of the lake. Not so lucky were our small business friends in other parts of the state. In fact, one of our very own artists at Grand Isle Art Works, potter, Jeremy Ayers is working hard to reclaim his studio and working space in Waterbury.