WEST JEFFERSON — The Florence Thomas Art School held its second annual Christmas Market Friday and Saturday, Nov. 29-30. Inspired by traditional markets in the holiday season, the art school opened its gallery to vendors, artists and visitors alike.

According to Gallery manager Joni Ray, people had spent the past year asking about the market’s return. While they had planned to do another, Ray said they did not expect it to have the impact that last year’s event did.

The 2019 edition featured 15 vendors: Gail Brandt (quilting and jewelry), Carla’s Baskets, Gardiner Pottery, Old Goat & Grace Studio (paintings and hand-dyed scarves), LaBonte Farms (herbal products, honey, food wraps and candies), Debra Mauser Designs (jewelry), Bob Piastuch (seasonal woodcarving), RagBags of Blowing Rock (one-of-a-kind handbags), Re-Fashioned (handbuilt pottery and jewelry), Cher Shaffer (original art), Adrienne Sherrow (jewelry and fiber art), Sister Co. (wreaths and bows), Second Spring Designs (upcycled clothing and fabric art), Cia Wagoner (scarves, jewelry and handmade decor) and Dawn Wicklow Fine Arts and Wishful Thinking Studio.

The 2019 event also saw fewer spaces for artists, which allowed for those involved to have more space for their work.

Ray said that the positive reception in both years has turned the event into a new staple for the art school.

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