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Art complements antiques at local shop

Available art: 2-year-old Melody Cheshire (far left) helps her grandmother and artist Kathy Hopper (center), and Tradewinds owner Charlie Schoenvogel, display works for sale at the shop.

Available art: 2-year-old Melody Cheshire (far left) helps her grandmother and artist Kathy Hopper (center), and Tradewinds owner Charlie Schoenvogel, display works for sale at the shop.

Shoppers at Tradewinds Antiques and Upholstery can find new items alongside the old.

Tradewinds owner Charlie Schoenvogel has allowed work by local artists to be featured and sold at the store, now located at 1506 Seventh Street North in Clanton, across Highway 31 from Goosepond Park.

“I wanted something that would represent the craftsmen of Chilton County and give the customer the option to buy something that is made here,” Schoenvogel said. “It makes a difference to give a gift that doesn’t come in a box. You can touch and feel it.”

Schoenvogel was already familiar with some of the artists, while he met others at the Chilton County Arts Council’s Folk Art Festival Showcase on Nov. 2-3.

Work available includes hand-painted furniture by Kathy Hopper; paintings by Peggy Smith; hand-finished canes and walking sticks by Jason Jeffcoat; hand turned bowls and cutting boards by Gerald Smitherman; towels and baby blankets by Patty Vann; painted gourds and framed embroidery by Joan Hardgrove; handmade soap by Rae Ann Pearce; and fiber art, dolls and beaded pieces by Diana Hiott.

“Tradewinds has a history of selling handmade and collectible things, old furniture and paintings, as most antique stores do,” Hiott said. “The new handmade art fits nicely in with the old, giving shoppers and collectors an opportunity to choose from many types of one-of-a-kind gifts that are made in central Alabama–most are made right here in Chilton County.”

Schoenvogel said the artists were specifically chosen for their unique work that would complement the pieces already at the store.

He said he thought it was important to give the artists a means to sell their work.

Hopper, for example, said her sales have been limited to flea markets, and that she was excited about the opportunity provided at Tradewinds.

“I appreciate Charlie for letting us do that,” she said.

Hiott said supporting local art is important to the community and helps establish a market for interesting and unique items.

“Antiques and local arts and crafts can add yearlong appeal to visitors,” she said. “With the opening of the Chilton County Arts Council building, interest in supporting and creating local art is growing.

“When you work with local artists and craftspeople you can have something uniquely yours that no one else will have.”