Springfest art studio tour showcases best of Blaine

Published on Thu, May 6, 2010 by By Tara Nelson

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Handmade jewelry, knitted hats, stained glass works, Scandinavian wet felting, and decorated functional ceramic ware are just a few of the crafts visitors will find at the Springfest art studio tour in Blaine and Birch Bay this weekend.

The two-day self-guided tour features the home studios of 15 local artists in the greater Blaine area.
Diane Major, one of the organizers of the event, said the event is a culmination of the work by an “extreme grassroots” group of diverse artists who stepped up to make this happen.

“The diversity of art is definitely represented in this tour. We have a lot of diversity among artists, including painters, quilters, woodworkers, and iron workers,” she said. “There is so much talent within this beautiful community of Northern Whatcom County, it’s bursting at the seams. These people have just come forth to make this happen and make it a well organized event.”

Coinciding with the art studio tour are spring release tastings at two local wineries – Glacial Lake Missoula Wine company  and Dakota Creek Winery.

GLM will release some new wines including their Habor Light Red, in which a portion of the proceeds will be donated to the Semiahmoo Lighthouse Resurrection Society, dedicated to rebuilding Blaine’s historical lighthouse. They will be open May 7, 8 and 9 from noon to 6 p.m.

Dakota Creek will also release several new wines, including a 2008 Firefighter Red, a 2009 Sangeovese Rose and a 2009 Viognier.

The Firefighter Red – a blend of 54 percent Cabernet Sauvignon, 27 percent Merlot, 14 percent Syrah, 3 percent Petit Verdot and 2 percent Malbec – is Dakota Creek’s popular “charity blend” and proceeds will be donated to local families who have lost their homes to fire. ($19.95)

The winery will also be featuring Blaine glass artist Karla Eames, of Classy Sassy Glass; photography by Jeff Lindeman, of Birch Bay; and Walden Lane Gourmet salt, spices and rubs, of Skagit County.

Dakota Creek Winery will be open Thursday, Friday, Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5  p.m. during the event. Their normal business hours are Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 1 to 5 p.m.

Some of the new art featured on the tour include works by Neal and Ganga Engledow at 680 Georgia Street; quilts by Anne Abrams of 9543 Stein Road in Custer; custom ornamental gates and iron work by Steel Magnolia; Raku pottery by Lynn Dee of Lummi Island; paintings by Kim Determan; pastel flower and bird paintings by Barbara Wean at 288 Martin Street, in Blaine; Allie Ryser of Glass Allie Studio featuring lampwork beads, vessels-fused glass and recycled glass jewelry; Irene Lawson, featuring low-fire underglazed functional ceramics with highly decorated geometric patterns. Both Ryser and Lawson are located at at 9375 Valley View Road in Blaine. Young artists from Blaine high school will also be featured at Paso del Norte Mexican restaurant.

Brochures are available at the Blaine Visitors Center at 728 Peace Portal Drive.

For more information regarding tour details, contact the listed artists’ phone numbers in the studio tour brochure, or visit www.blaineartists.com.