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Leslie McCarthy's Fabric Workshop during the Fall Craft Week at Montreat Conference Center

Fall Craft Week

Work with your hands and create beautiful handmade works of art.

September 30 - October 5, 2018

Come create with your hands, gain proficiency in an art form, and enjoy the community of other artists during a fall week in the mountains.

Years ago M. C. Richards, renowned potter, came to Black Mountain College to teach poetry but ended up with her hands in clay. In her book Centering she defines the word craft as “…Craft, as you may know, comes from the German word Kraft, meaning power or strength. We can’t fake craft. It lies in the act.”1

The idea wasn’t totally new. In fact, the Arts and Crafts Movement, which found real fruition in these mountains, had already introduced the idea of “craft” into an increasingly industrialized culture. “They sought to provide an alternative code to the harshness of late nineteenth-century industrialism, to foster spiritual harmony through the work process…(by encouraging) individualism, the creation of hand-made goods in place of machine uniformity, and a reappraisal of design materials.”2

The Fall Craft Week is our quest here at Montreat Conference Center to celebrate the profound idea of “craft” in a world where technology dominates and where people mainly use their hands to operate smart phones and computers. Our goal is to bring people together as a community of artists to work with our hands with beautiful and natural materials. Mark your calendars now, and plan to join this community of artists as we create our own craft!

Class Offerings for 2018

  • Embellishments for You, Leslie McCarthy
  • Dulcimer Making, Dick Porter and Howard Moore
  • Colorful Adventures in Art Journaling, Deb Guess
  • Come Join This Circus: An Adventure in Writing, Ina Hughs
  • Fun with Photography, Joye Ardyn Durham
  • Creating with Stained Glass, Roger Maness
  • Get Away… With Clay! Becky Garrity

Click on the WORKSHOPS tab above for class details. For more information on program fees and accommodations for this event, please click on the RATES & REGISTRATION tab above.


1 M.C. Richards, Centering in Pottery, Poetry and the Person (Wesleyan University Press: Middleton, Connecticut, 1969) p. 12.
2 Elizabeth Coming and Wendy Kaplan, The Arts and Crafts Movement (Thames and Hudson: London, 2004) p. 9.
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STEP-1: Register for the Conference

Registration Fee:

  • Early Bird Rate: On/before August 19: $250* PLUS materials fee
  • Full Price: After August 19: $275* PLUS materials fee

PLEASE NOTE: Registration fee does not include lodging or meals. Please see below to make a separate reservation for Assembly Inn.

Questions about registration? Email the registrar at SusanA@montreat.org.

*Registration fee includes a community services fee of $1 per person/per day for public services provided by the Town of Montreat and the fire district.

STEP-2: Reserve Lodging and Meals (optional)

Rates below include room in Assembly Inn and meals in the Galax Dining Room (Sunday supper through Friday breakfast). Rooms are assigned on a first come, first served basis. Registration fee is NOT included in this rate.

One Bedroom, One Bath in Assembly Inn with Meal Package:

  • One person: $647.50
  • Two persons:  $795.00 ($397.50 per person)
  • Three persons (3rd person on air mattress): $942.50 ($314.17 per person)

Two Bedroom, Two Bath Suite in Assembly Inn with Meal Package:

  • Two persons: $1295.00 ($647.50 per person)
  • Three persons: $1442.50 ($480.83 per person)
  • Four persons: $1590.00 ($397.50 per person)
  • Book Your Lodging and Meals Online Now!

    To ensure all guests in your party receive a meal ticket upon arrival, please enter the correct number of adults and children below.
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Meals for Commuters:
If you are not staying in the Assembly Inn, but would like to purchase meals in the Galax Dining Room, please contact the registrar at SusanA@montreat.org to purchase meal tickets in advance. (Meal Prices: Breakfast – $8.75, Lunch – $10.00, Supper – $12.75.)

Questions about lodging or meals? Email the registrar at SusanA@montreat.org.


Refund Policies

Refund Policy for Conference:
Full refund available up to 30 days before event. Email the registrar at SusanA@montreat.org to make a request.

Refund Policy for Lodging and Meals:
All requests must be in writing and received via email, fax, or U.S. mail.

  • On or before August 19:  You will be issued a full refund of any payments made toward room and meal charges.
  • Between August 20 and September 23: You will be issued a refund of payments made toward room and meal charges minus a $40 service charge.
  • After September 23: No refund will be issued.

Email the registrar at SusanA@montreat.org to make a request.


Contact the Registrar

Questions about registration, lodging, or meals? Email the registrar at SusanA@montreat.org.

Class Instructors

Montreat Conference CenterLeslie McCarthy, owner of Making Ends Meet, Inc., and Funky Fibers & Furniture, has a passion for all things fabric and fibers. She recently added “fire” to her list as she studied at the Painting With Fire Studio, earning her certification to teach the amazing art. From dying to painting, gluing to building, her classes are never boring and you never know what she has in mind for the next one!

Montreat Conference CenterHoward Moore is a graduate of the University of South Carolina in mathematics and retired from Sonoco Products Company as director of corporate compensation and benefits. He has been a woodcarver for over 60 years and enjoys puzzles, origami, photography, and making dulcimers and ukuleles. Howard has taught wood-working classes with Dick Porter for over 30 years.

Montreat Conference CenterDick Porter is a retired pantyhose maker from Hanes Hosiery Corporation and now lives in Hartsville, SC. He has taught dulcimer making with Howard Moore for over 40 years. In that time they have helped students make over 600 dulcimers. Dick and his wife, Brenda, are involved in Living Waters for the World projects in the Dominican Republic.

Montreat Conference CenterDeb Guess is a full-time jewelry and mixed media artist, producing jewelry for galleries and teaching in the Soul Whispers Arts studio and other venues throughout the southeast. Her passion is helping folks make connections between creativity and personal spirituality. Deb also loves to garden, cook, travel, eat chocolate, and hang out with her very fun adult children. She lives in Laurinburg, NC, with husband, Deck, and her poorly behaved but lovable dogs, Schnitzel and Gypsy.

Montreat Conference CenterIna Hughs is an award-winning author of three books of non-fiction and for over 40 years has been a syndicated columnist with Scripps-Howard and Knight Ridder, receiving top honors from The Society of Professional Journalism. She has been featured on “Good Morning America,” “The Evening News With Tom Brokow,” Readings from the White House, and National Public Radio. Her work appears regularly in a wide variety of publications and anthologies, including Readers Digest, the Chicken Soup series, The Children’s Defense Fund and Salon.com. She leads writing workshops from California to North Carolina, including Ghost Ranch where her classes fill immediately, with long waiting lists.

Montreat Conference CenterJoye Ardyn Durham is an award winning photographer whose work has been published around the world. After closing her gallery of 23 years, Joye is now photo editor for The Laurel of Asheville magazine as well as showing her photography in other galleries in the area of Western North Carolina and Tennessee. Joye is known as a nature art photographer as well as specializing in dog, food, abstract photography and people portraits. She holds a BA in behavioral science with a minor in art and her masters in theology. Joye’s work is online at www.artistwithcamera.com.

Montreat Conference CenterRoger Maness lives in Nashville, TN, and is no stranger to Montreat or teaching stained glass. He officially “retired” from full-time recreational ministry in the church a few years ago, but is anything but retired, currently working in a very large non-profit youth sports program. In his limited spare time, he continues to enjoy teaching others the “how-to” of creating with stained glass.

Montreat Conference CenterBecky Garrity is from Charlottesville, VA. Clay has called her back time and again. In the ‘70s, she studied sculpture and ceramics at the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, VA. In the ‘80s, she happened into a two-year pottery apprenticeship in Okinawa, Japan. In the ‘90s, after many years as a student of pottery, she finally shifted from her chosen profession of graphic design to potter. She has been making and selling pots and teaching pottery ever since. She works with a mid- range stoneware clay. Her pieces are wheel thrown with hand formed attachments: spouts, handles, accents, etc. Her glazes are made from tried and true recipes shared by other potters through the years. See Becky’s work online at garritypottery.com.

Conference Director

Montreat Conference CenterThe Rev. Dr. Ann Laird Jones is the year-round director of arts ministry at Montreat. She is a graduate of Eckerd College (’77), Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary (’82), and Wesley Seminary in Washington, DC, where she earned her DMin in arts and theology, under the guidance of Catherine Kapikian. She is a teaching elder and member of St. Andrew Presbytery, and splits her time between Greenville, MS, and Montreat, NC. She and her husband, Mike Caulfield have two adult children, Sally and Doug.

Fall Classes

Please choose one class for the entire week. Any materials fees for your class are in addition to the conference fee. We assign classes on a first-come, first-served basis. We reserve the right to cancel a class based on projected attendance. Register early to insure a place in your class!

Embellishments for You, Leslie McCarthy
Scarves, jewelry, totes, and bags! There is a little something for everyone as we spend the week together playing with yarns, fabrics, beads, and other embellishments and create great one-of-a-kind artsy accessories for you to wear or to give as gifts. A sewing machine and basic sewing skills are required. We will use the machines for some but not all of the projects. All supplies are included. Come spend the week and create with us!

  • Class Limit: 8 people
  • Materials Fee: $50

Dulcimer Making, Dick Porter and Howard Moore
Come join us for a fun class making a dulcimer. All materials are supplied to enable participants to complete a four-stringed Appalachian mountain lap dulcimer. The instrument will be constructed from selected walnut with chestnut soundboards, which came from damaged church pews from Montreat Conference Center’s Anderson Auditorium. Mechanical tuning pegs, which enable easier and more accurate tuning, will be used. The week will also include time to make a dulcimer stand that permits displaying or storing on a shelf or piano top. There should be time to practice playing, as well.

  • Class Limit: 14 people
  • Materials Fee: $75

Colorful Adventures in Art Journaling, Deb Guess
Spend a week totally transforming a traditional bound book into an explosion of color, texture, and design that will become a three-dimensional work of art. Paint, stencil, cut, sand, fold, rip, attach, insert, and embellish pages and covers until the original book becomes your original masterpiece. Most supplies will be provided, but participants need to bring a Gelli Plate (available on Amazon – recommend an 8×10), three large Elmers extra strength glue sticks, and scissors. Participants are also encouraged to bring a ziplock bag packed with an assortment of any of the following: scraps of lace or yarn or ribbon, old buttons, charms, broken jewelry, junk drawer small found objects, copies of old photos, paint chips, etc.

  • Class Limit: 12 people
  • Materials Fee: $30

Come Join This Circus: An Adventure in Writing, Ina Hughs
What do you really want and maybe even need to write about? Are you stuck in your comfortable style or is your writing “voice” beginning to stutter or sound boring even to you? Are you in the same-ol’-same-ol’ rut? Do you want to write, but don’t know how or where to start? This class is a hodgepodge of writing genres: personal narrative; memoir; poetry; prose; fiction; nonfiction. If you automatically turn to the familiar, or like to stay in your comfort zone, you will have a chance to break out of that box. If you tend to follow a GPS on getting to your destination on a writing journey, you will be challenged to stray off course, to blaze a new trail. The seasoned writer will find new venues; the novice writer will hit their mother lode of talent, and everyone will leave well on the adventure of knowing and following through with all the possibilities before them. Carefully designed writing assignments encourage class members to explore ways to say what you always wanted to say but didn’t know how, or maybe when you start writing, you discover things you never knew you wanted or needed to say. It’s a little bit like lion taming, a little bit like high wire work, and some days we’ll unload the clown car. Bring paper, pen (or laptop) – and an open, creative mind.

  • Class Limit: 10 people
  • Materials Fee: N/A

Fun with Photography, Joye Ardyn Durham
This class is based on pure fun and alternative ways to take photos. We will cover ICM (intentional camera movement), abstracts, long exposure, light painting, and crystal ball photography. Bring your close-up lens as well as neutral density filter and polarizer. A basic knowledge of how your camera works is needed to take this class. We will also be going to different locations to take photos.

  • Class Limit: 10 people
  • Materials Fee: $20

Creating with Stained Glass, Roger Maness
Whether learning the basics or improving your skills, join us to build your own beautiful stained glass creations. If you’re a beginner, you will learn to cut glass, apply lead or foil, and to solder in order to create one or more one-dimensional pieces. If you have prior experience, you will be able to create more intricate pieces, including larger panels, or three-dimensional pieces like boxes or kaleidoscopes. Everyone will leave with beautiful pieces, the fun of creative expression, and the resources to continue at home if you wish.

  • Class Limit: 8 people
  • Materials Fee: $50

Get Away… With Clay! Becky Garrity
Grow your skills on the pottery wheel and in hand building. We will throw on the pottery wheel basic bowls and cups and will hand form bowls, boxes, lidded jars, and trays. Learn various surface design techniques including texturing, carving, slips, and underglazes. Focus on finishing techniques, design, and form while exploring possibilities with lids, handles, and feet for your creations. Gain a basic understanding of the make-up of glazes and how to apply them. Immerse yourself in the world of pottery without the distraction of everyday responsibilities!

  • Class Limit: 12 people
  • Materials Fee: $40

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