We aren’t going to say that we never shop big box stores. But we try really hard not to, whenever possible. Because there’s something about having artisan-made pieces in your home; pieces delicately created by worn hands, crafting a story that only you will ever own. It’s also why we always pick up local artisan gifts when we travel. We love to gift these at Christmas, as each piece is as unique as its recipient. Coincidently, so are each of our Beekman makers and artisans.
You may be buying their pieces as gifts this year. Find out how they spend the season when they aren’t upping your gift-giving game. For our first Q & Holid-AY, we’re talking to ceramicist Jasmine Crowe.
WHAT’S ONE OF THE FIRST GIFTS YOU EVER MADE?
I don’t remember the first, but that’s because there are so many. I crocheted hats, made jewelry, tins of cookies, and of course, all the early, clunky pottery that I now wish friends and family would get rid of!
WHAT’S THE MOST TREASURED GIFT YOU’VE EVER RECEIVED?
Hand sewn quilts that my great friend Leesa made for each of my children. They were both unique – suited to them more than we even knew at the time – and they will be a part of our family forever. The most memorable gift was from my now husband when we were in college. I had this pair of motorcycle boots that I had found at a yard sale when I was 13 and wore all the time. They were really worn out and had staples coming up on the inside, but I wore them anyway because I loved them. For Christmas our first year together, he got me cushioned insoles and boot polish and I knew he was the one.
WHICH HOLIDAY TRADITION DO YOU LOOK FORWARD TO?
All of them! With kids around, I find myself doing all the things I loved as a child. The advent calendar, tissue paper stars in the window, carols around the piano, and Christmas books every night before bed. I also love to bake, so I find the holiday is a wonderful excuse to overload everyone around me with fancy cookies.
FAVORITE HOLIDAY MOVIE OR TV SPECIAL?
Elf. Hands down the best Christmas movie ever made.
WHICH MAKER OR ARTISAN DO YOU PURCHASE GIFTS FROM?
I try to find new makers every year to buy gifts from. I love Laurel O’Brian jewelry for any woman I know, and I try to find a new small batch bourbon for my husband every year. There are so many fantastic makers right now – it’s hard to not just buy stuff for myself!
GIVE OUR NEIGHBORS ADVICE FOR A DIY HOLIDAY?
Just jump in and make something! You don’t have to do anything complicated or even skill requiring, but making things is satisfying and ultimately much appreciated. This year, my kids are making bath bombs, bookmarks, and origami ornaments and I’m sure their gifts will be treasured.