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SC Artisans Center

SC Artisans Center | Walterboro, SC

Walterboro SC - SC Artisans Center

Photo credit: SC Artisans Center

A True Cultural Experience

A True Cultural Experience. Walk through the door of the SC Artisans Center in Walterboro, and you see pottery from SC artists. Look up and you’ll spot the most expensive item in the Gallery – a handmade red canoe which costs $13,000. (Don’t let that scare you. You can also buy a $1 ornament.)

Under the canoe you’ll find traditional topsy-turvy dolls and quilt dolls made from designs that date back hundreds of years. At the back of the front gallery is South Carolina’s answer to Dale Chihuly. Nearby resident Herman Leonhardt’s hand blown glass bowls are a vision.

Throughout the Center is the work of 270 talented SC juried artists who’ve created works of exceptional quality in every medium. A visitor will find one-of-a-kind garden sculptures, loomed shawls, hand-made jewelry, photography and one of the state’s best displays of sweet grass baskets.

“You’ll see interpretive panels that explain the history and craft,” says executive director Gale Doggette. “Folks interested in a particular artist will find bio cards and we can help them make contact.”

Visitors come from everywhere, including Canada and a recent group of Japanese tourists taking a day trip from Charleston to see the Center and enjoy the ambience of a small Southern town.

Wow factor: The sheer number of items and variety of creativity on display. Their best seller? Handcarved worn-out work boots made from a single piece of wood – laces and treads included. (Although for my money, the canoe looked very appealing.)

Hint: Keep young children in tow. There are so many items that little ones will want to touch. Afterward, hang around and explore Walterboro (just off I-95, between Charleston and Savannah). Downtown will make you nostalgic. Local lunches can be enjoyed at Carmine’s (Italian), the Blarney Stone (Irish Pub fare and “the best salmon BLT you’ve ever tasted”), and Hiott’s Pharmacy, where you’ll order an old-fashioned flat sandwich (precursor to panini) and soda fountain drink.

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