Wednesday, December 17, 2008

mid December update

We're hunkering down here at Dancing Pig's World Headquarters, getting ready for a bit of a holiday break before we ramp up production for our spring run to Florida.
I'm making a few more knitting bowls, which i hope to have up on Etsy just before Christmas. (i know, useful, huh?!) I'm figuring a) better late than never & b) if Santa forgot to bring you one of these, maybe you could get one for yourself... (i am, after all, the Queen of Rationalization- Not Rationality mind. Just Rationalization. Big Difference.)

What else to tell y'all?! Not much, really. I'm just making pots, reading books, watching some tv & knitting like crazy... gotta get the birthday socks done (three December birthdays in my immediate family- pity me!) and then the hats & scarves i want to give my niephem when i go visit them in early January. My niece is getting a blueberry hat, cause that's her favorite food & she's really into faeries these days. Not sure if i should make a monster hat like the one Mary is wearing below (see what you missed if you skipped the Open House!?!) for the nephew or perhaps something a bit more staid, like a Hogwarts House Scarf. Any feedback is welcome!

I'm gonna go put some more pots on Etsy (you can head over there to shop anytime: & then it's knitting time for me!
Love, blessings & many wonderful pots for the holidays,

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

it's the most wonderful time of the year!

As has become our tradition, we're going to be at the Art of Fire's Holiday Open House and Studio Tour the first two weekends of December. I love this show! You will too! Come on out!
We've got on offer: Theda's awesome cookies, snuggles with random cats, the warmth of the glass studio, Tuatha's AWESOME Celtic goodies (jewelry, stained glass, Celtic Cards, Amazing Art, etc) and, last but certainly not least, piles of our fantastic pots. And as always, everything offered for sale here is handmade by real artisans who love what they do and add that love and integrity into everything we offer for sale. AND it's all very low stress & low key. The countryside is calm & soothing. The whole experience is as far from the maddening maul at the mall as you can get! Hell, do all your Holiday Shopping with us! (that's basically what i do!)

When is all this happening you ask?!
Why very soon, the first two weekends of December in fact:
Friday, Saturday & Sunday December 5, 6 & 7 and December 12, 13 & 14
We'll be there from 10 till 5 each day. Though, true confession, we won't really be set up until Saturday December 6- hardly anyone comes out to see us on the first Friday so we're planning on dawdling about & tweaking the set up that day- of course, Art of Fire and Allen will be totally ready to go, & we'll be glad to root about in the boxes to find cool stuff for you if you do show up on Friday. Just be gentle with us, we're very overworked & under rested pigs this time of year...
Here's where we'll be courtesy of Mapquest
Please come and say hello, we've missed you & would love to see you then!
PS: there will be puppies! Ursa and Budgth will be in attendance, ready to accept your scritches & offerings of snacks. How can you resist those faces?!

Friday, November 14, 2008

err: Better Late than Never?!

Due to transportation woes beyond our control (see more about that below) Next Weekend Dancing Pig is going to be selling our wares at the SCA's Holiday Market Faire * It's happening on Saturday, November 22 from 10am to 6:30pm at the Prince William County Fairgrounds in Manassas, VA.
We'll have a veritable plethora of Dancing Pig Pots, including our awesome Dirty pirate mugs!
C'mon, Everyone needs at least ONE dirty pirate in their life! And don't give me that old line about already having a dirty pirate in your life- cause if that's the case, YOUR dirty pirate needs one of these mugs!
This is a great good time, with lots of merchants offering lots of essentials for all the the medievalists in your life! We did this show 3 years ago, had a great time and the only reason we missed it the past two years is cause we've been in Florida for the month of November.
So if you're in the DC area, come make the most of this rare, November opportunity to shop with Dancing Pig and Greenman Leather!
*please note that this is a re-enactment event, there is a charge to attend and most of the folks there will be in medieval clothing.

OK, i could attempt to apologize for or explain away my neglect of this site for the past 4 or so months, but let's just say i was stupidly busy, had major computer issues and a stress aversion/ reaction that resulted in my going weeks without doing ANYTHING online other than occasionally peeking at Twitter.
(to the right, a picture of my Tristan doing what i WISH i'd been up to the past few months; i.e. napping!)

But all that is behind us now.

We're moving forward, into the bright, shiny, continually updated future.

To that end, we're not in Florida this November, as we had planned.
Over the past 6 months we've gone through 3 white vans, over $5,000 usd & would still be without anything capable of hauling our pots out of our valley if not for the kind intervention of my in-laws. Thanks so much Nona & Darrell Sr! Love ya!

We now have a shiny, new, 2008 Ford 350 superduty work van. It smells very new. D is besotted. I am more or less numb.
Related: Anyone want to buy a 1998 Dodge Van w/ a brand new transmission & brakes?! It
needs engine work, but it's cheap. We also have a 1983 Chevy work van that is surprisingly reliable, needs new spark plugs & a tune up & will soon need a new transmission for sale for very little money. Our yard looks like we're trying to start a breeding farm for white vans! Come take one or more of them away today!(on the right, a pic of 2 out of 3 of our vans. Guess which is which)

OK, you probably didn't come here to hear my tales of transportation woe &/or intrigue.

We're doing some shows, selling some pots.
PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE come buy some so we can pay some of our rapidly mounting expenses!

First, there's the Holiday Market Faire mentioned above.

And of course, we're also going to be at the Art of Fire's Holiday Open House and Studio Tour the first two weekends of December. I love this show! You will too! Come on out!
As always we've got on offer: Theda's awesome cookies, snuggles with random cats, the warmth of the glass studio, Tuatha's AWESOME Celtic goodies (jewelry, stained glass, Celtic Cards, Amazing Art, etc) and, last but certainly not least, piles of our fantastic pots. And as always, everything offered for sale here is handmade by real artisans who love what they do and add that love and integrity into everything we offer for sale. AND it's all very low stress & low key. The countryside is calm & soothing. The whole experience is as far from the maddening maul at the mall as you can get! Hell, do all your Holiday Shopping with us! (that's basically what i do!)

When is all this happening you ask?!
Well, the first two weekends of December:
Friday, Saturday & Sunday December 5, 6 & 7 and December 12, 13 & 14
We'll be there from 10 till 5 each day.
Here's where we'll be courtesy of Mapquest
Please come and say hello, we've missed you & would love to see you then!

Monday, July 28, 2008

Pennsic, arrgh!!!

Hey folks, we're at War. Don't worry though, it's just a medieval reenactment that draws 10,000+ freaks to the hills of Pennsylvania every August.
It's a great good time, far to much work (& hopefully) too much fun. And hopefully i'll sell too many pots, and be frantic to get back home to my studio and my puppies in the middle of August, when i'll begin the whole frantic cycle over again, this time focusing on getting ready for Maryland Renaissance Festival.
Hope to see you at one or both of these awesome events!
Here's a quick picture of one of my dragons, wondering why the mug is empty, something i might be doing soon myself!
I'm off to War!

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Dancing Pig Pots now avalible ONLINE!

Yep, we be technocelts! Our shop is up and running at Etsy.
It's awesome. You need to check it out. NOW!

We just updated! It's very keen.
Fast shipping. Reasonable Price.

Pennsic Panic has begun!

Yep, it's officially only a month to Pennsic, and while i'm pleased to report that i'm further ahead than i've been at this time in other years, i'm still a bit paralyzed by panic. In a stupid moment of i don't even have words to describe how overly optimistic i was feeling, i agreed to send Jill away to Canada to complete her yurt for the three weeks before War! Yeah, that was smart. Send the glaze monkey away for the three busiest weeks in the year. Brilliant! (above, a picture of one of our extra bonus dogs, my niece's puppy Luna, who's visiting for a few weeks. Cute, isn't she?! She's slacking off like i wish i could!)

In related news, know anyone who wants to spend a working vacation in West Virginia? Send 'em out, we'll put them to work!

OK, enough kvetching.
How about some bragging?

Here's a sneak preview of this year's Pennsic Mug.

For folks not in the loop, here's how it goes: i've been making these since Pennsic 25. Each year, i make enough mugs to match the year, so this year is Pennsic XXXVII (37) thus, there will be 37 Pennsic mugs, each one numbered on the bottom. I always sell out, usually before Midnight Madness. The last one is spoken for already, #37, but if you'd like a special number set aside for you, drop me an email (pig !at dancingpig dot com) and it will be waiting for you at War!

Other quick updates:
Our truck, the great gray giant, is dead to us. The transmission would have cost $3,000 we didn't have so we turned it in. Now, we're going to shows in a 85 chevy van, that doesn't have A/C or a radio and is very spotty in reverse. The good news is that cost us $800. That's two months of truck payments. We're hoping to get through Pennsic with this beast, and make enough money there to be able to afford a nicer used van. You know, one with reverse. Until then, the white mare is getting us where we need to go. Please send any good used van juju you might have our way! And if you know of any great deals on late 90s work vans, preferably with a heavy duty trannie, a good 8 cylinder engine, working AC and radio and possibly side windows & a body mounted trailer hitch, please let us know. We can't spend more than 4K on this project, but we've got lots of pottery we could barter to sweeten the deal!

The final bit of relevant news is that we've been branching out into the Rendezvous market. Well, i say we, i really mean Darrell. And it's a bit of a homecoming for him, as he used to hang out in that world before he hooked up with me. He's loving it. I really love making the pots for that market, they're very simple and somehow sort of pure. Not to mention very easy to glaze! Always a plus for me. So, if you're into the Rendezvous scene, come check out our trade blanket- right now Darrell's in Ohio at the Old NorthWest Territory Primitive Rendezvous and later in July he's going to be selling at the Feast of the East, just down the road from us in Gandeeville, W.Va.

That's the mid-summer update from DaPig. Hope y'all are less busy and have more money than we have right now, but it's all good. We're still hanging out out here in the hills, slinging mud & swattin' bugs.

See ya at the next show!
Virginia aka Dancing Pig's overworked potter

Monday, May 12, 2008

Mid May Update:
We've actually got a few weeks off! Am i making pots as i desperately need to be doing? Noooo, of course not! I've got a new (to me) computer & i'm whiling away the hours setting the darn thing up & playing w/ twitter, brightkite & now, evernote.
I love social networking, web 2.0, whatever you want to call it, but darn if it isn't a huge ol' time suck, especially for an ADD control freak such as myself.
Anyway, here i am, actually posting on a work related blog. Granted, it's turning into a long post about how i'm not actually, you know, working, but still, it's a step in the right direction.

(left, a picture of me in my fairie finery at Spoutwood Fairie Festival, which was awesome, by the way!)
I do have point to make in here somewhere ::rummages around in very cluttered & disorganized brain:: Oh yeah- we've added a show to our schedule/Calendar for Memorial Day weekend (the Glasgow Highland Games in KY) and IF our truck's transmission problem is fixable, Darrell will also be at Aethelmearc's War Practice at Cooper's Lake (aka the Pennsic site) this coming weekend, May 16-18.

Sadly, that's a big IF, as our trusty steed, Ol' Leroy, died a horrible gear grinding death this past Wednesday, down near Charleston. D was picking up a tribal brother & getting ready to go out to the tribal land in central Ohio- luckily the truck died on it's way to Three Bears' house & D was able to limp to 3Bs before the trannie quit all together. We had it towed to the Dodge dealer in Charleston only to find out that the trannie guy there was in classes all of last week, so we won't know till this Monday how bad the damage is. Cross your fingers for us & please, send all the cheap car repair juju you can spare to us. We really, really need it!

That's the big news in our life at the moment. Other than that we're making pots & leather, watching the occasional Netflix movie & i, at least, am reading of Jill's bliss while she's visiting her new boyfriend James (aka @willia4 on twitter) in Charleston SC with a mixture of envy & trepidation. I'm glad she's having a good time, but am also a bit anxious that she may never return to carve & glaze my pots for me. Not sure what i'll do without her & am hoping i won't have to find out.

I'm off to while away some more time online.
Be well, do good work & be sure to BUY MORE POTS, either in person or via our Etsy store.
~Virginia aka Dancing Pig's distracted potter
(the picture on the right is of our booth at Spoutwood this year- i liked the way the pots & leather look together. Damn but that was a great good time- if you missed it, you NEED to be there next year!)

I leave you now with a picture of my two pups, who are both looking at me with variations of this "come to bed now" stare even as i type. Goodnight all! ::calls out to pups as she wanders away:: "Save some space of the bed for me!"

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

YES! it's that time of year again! Fairie Festival Season is upon us!
We're packing up pots & our fairie finery and heading east over the mountains for one of my favorite festivals of the year- Spoutwood Farm's Fairie Festival is happening this coming weekend.
This is a magical show in a beautiful, bucolic spot that is annually invaded by all sorts of fairies, pixies, picties, orcs, mudsprites & all sorts of other magical beings. YOU need to put on your 'fairie best' and come out to play with us!
We'll have lots of pots fresh from the kiln, our two smallest dogs & Darrell in a kilt!

How can you miss this occasion?!
I didn't think so.
Here's the info:
Spoutwood Farms Fairie Festival
Spoutwood Farms, Glen Rock PA
May 2, 3 and 4 2008
Great good times, lots of happy kids & animals, awesome crafts & fairie abundance await! We hope to see all y'all there!

but, if you can't make it (simultaneously pouting & making come hither gestures) you could try to consul yourself by doing a bit of shopping at my Etsy shop:

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Hail & Welcome to Dancing Pig Pottery's blog.
Here's what's happening this week:

Our big, biG, BIG news is that Dancing Pig Pottery finally has an online outlet- that's right, after years of foot dragging & excuse making, we're finally selling our pots online, and so far it's been great. We've got a shop over on Etsy, which is an awesome handmade/crafts marketplace. As a seller, i love how easy everything is for me over there. I should have done this years ago!
Check our our Etsy store & don't forget to bookmark it & share it with all your friends!

and then, there's this: Despite a stunning lack of publicity, we are in fact going to be in Maryland, THIS WEEKEND, selling pots. That's right, it's our semi-annual appearance at
Art of Fire's Open House & Studio Tour
I love this "rite of spring"! It's my first show of the spring season & i get to show off all the cool stuff we've been working on over the winter break. We'll have lots of chocolate pots and there will be lots of Ceilidh pots (the ones that Jill/Bran & i have been collaborating on) as well. Plus, our newest puppy, Ursa Minor, (pictured in this post) will be making her social debut. Even if you don't need pots (and really, doesn't everyone NEED pots?- don't answer that!) you should at least stop by for a chat & a cuppa tea.
That's all happening
THIS WEEKEND Friday, Saturday & Sunday, April 11, 12 & 13
from 10 til 5 each day.

As an added bonus, our neighbor from Maryland Renaissance Festival, Allen the Printmaker, will be at the Art of Fire's Open House also. It'll be like a little mini Renn Fest Spring Preview!

Details about the other studios on the tour can be found here
Details about Art of Fire & a street address for mapquest purposes can be found here
and last but certainly not least, a direct link to our up to date calendar,
with the rest of our spring show schedule in all it's glory can be found here

(above: Ursa, cooling down after playing w/ the big dogs)

Sunday, March 23, 2008

y'all know i'm a sucker for dogs, right? well, below, meet Ra, a very wonderful pooch we met & hung out with at the Florida Renaissance Festival last month. Ra worked across the street at the hawk & falcon show. She'd come hide under our tablecloths when she needed a break. But more about that show later...

Spring is Springing! or, as our friends at Art of Fire (the great glass studio & gallery in Maryland) say:
"Spring has sprung.
The grass has rise.
The Art of Fire is where it is."
or, something like that.
Anyway, we're going to be at the Art of Fire for the Countryside Artisans Spring Studio Tour & Open House.
It's happening Friday, Saturday & Sunday, April 11 thru 13 from 10 til 5 each day.

We'll have lots of pots fresh from the kiln! In theory, we've been making pots all winter, so come on by and see what's new! Enjoy a spring drive in the country & get some great pottery and glass.
What more could you ask for?! Well, we've got an extra attraction this year- our neighbor at the Maryland Renaissance Festival, Allen Ye Printmaker will also have his tent set up on the lawn with us! It'll be a mini Renn Fest, a spring preview if you like. So come on out & see what all the cool kids have been up to this winter!

And if you want to know where we'll be the rest of this spring, check out our freshly updated calendar here: Pig Futures, Dancing Pig's Calendar page.

If you check that out, you'll notice that our May & June is a bit light at the moment. Do you know of any great shows in the mid-Atlantic or Ohio or West Virginia that would be better if they had our pottery & leather? Please, drop me an email: and let me know about it. Cause i still need a new laptop & the price of gas is kicking our arse right now. We need shows that are cheap, close to home & very very lucrative right now. I know they're out there- we just need your help in finding them!

Thanks for any input you might have.
I'm gonna go make dragon mugs!
opps, but first, a few pictures from our recent "drive south" we went to the Florida Renaissance Festival, here's our booth there:
The theme of our recent southern tour seemed to be packing. Or unpacking. Or packing again. Below, our mascot pig, Amanda, determined not to be left behind:

And i'll leave you with a picture of Jill, our wonderful glaze monkey who has a new title, that of packing b!tch. She can get more stuff into less space than anyone i know. All hail the wonderfullness that is Jill. She's all that got Darrell & me & all our stuff home from Mississippi with all of our stuff (& our marriage) intact.
(you might not be able to tell, but the door of our trailer is actually bulging in the picture below)

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

We're going to Gulf Wars soon.
And, even as i type, Darrell is down in Florida, selling pottery and leather at the Florida Renaissance Festival.
Darrell is there, but the camera isn't.
And i know i've been slack about give y'all pictures lately, so i thought i'd post a few pictures of what the studio looks like these days:

this is the door to the studio. You might not be able to tell, but i seem to have gathered a collection of cranky signs. The one over the door says "Abandon all hope ye who enter here"
The white sign says "welcome" in fancy formal lettering & then the gargoyle has scratched u-n in from & d in the back.
and the grey sign below that says simply "go away"
Can you tell that i'm kinda possessive about my work space?!

Well, if you can get past the hostility & wander through the mud & very enthusiastic doggie dance of welcome, once you're inside the studio you'll see my potter's wheel, which is where i'd spend all my time if i could:

But alas, i have to do other things as well, such as glaze the pottery when Jill's not around to bail me out. This is my work table, filled with pots that need to be glazed and on the right, the desk where i sit & look out at my river while i'm decorating my pots:

and last, but certainly not least, there are the studio dogs, who spend most of their time crashed out either on the thrift shop couch or cuter than i can stand, burrowed into the pile of plastic bags that my clay comes in. I stash the empties under the wedging table & of late, this is where both Budgth & occasionally Ursa spend most of their time. This unbearably cute behavior is what made me bring the camera out to the studio, so brace yourself for cuteness:

Can you stand it?! Neither can i! And i'm subjected to sights like this every day! It's a wonder i get any work done at all! But now, it's late & i'm going to turn off a kiln & go to bed. More pictures, and links soon, before we leave for Gulf Wars, i promise.
And, if i'm really efficent, i'm going to have an Etsy store up and running by the end of March!
Keep checking back, it *could* happen!
Blessings from the tired, overworked but also content potter.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

we're going back to Florida!
Yep, it's too darn cold & muddy in our WVa river valley, so we're driving south to sunny Florida!
We're looking forward to a week of fun in the sun on the Gulf Coast of Florida on Anna Maria Island, one of my most favorite places in the world!
Then we're heading northish, to central Florida and the Hoggetown Medieval Faire in Gainesville FL. That's happening the last weekend in January & the first weekend of February. Sadly, after that i have to go home to make more pots, but Darrell gets to stay in Florida- he's going to the Florida Renaissance Festival near Fort Lauderdale for five weeks (the rest of February & the first two weekends of March) poor soul!

Then we're all heading back to the Gulf Coast, though it'll be Mississippi this time. Yep, we're going back to Gulf Wars! You should come to, it's just about the most awesome SCA event i've ever been to. Come play with us! & buy some pots too, cause Mama's still without a Mac- yep, i'm still limping along on my refurbished $75 desktop PC & this just won't do! Buy pots, the money will go directly into the "get-Va-a-new-Powerbook-so-she-can-put-some-pictures-on-the-website-&-be-happy-again" fund!
Seriously folks, i'm dying here!

Speaking of computer troubles, here are some pictures for the good folks on the jury for Spoutwood Farm's Fairie Festival: Great pictures of our Leather & Pottery can be found here!