Business Spotlight: Handcrafted is the store for functional American Art pieces in Solana Beach


No Thorns a Nuno shawl by Tami Zohar (Tami Z Creations) is a handmade shawl made from hand-dyed silk and felted with merino wool upcycled repurposed silk fiber, handspun upcycled silk and hand crochet yarn. It is a great accessory to any garment and makes a beautiful holiday gift; available at Handcrafted.

Handcrafted, a gallery of handmade American functional art pieces, will celebrate its first anniversary on Cedros Avenue in Solana Beach, Saturday, Dec. 5. From 1 to 5 p.m. fiber artist Tami Zohar will offer a trunk show, with her vibrant bespoke hand-dyed flowing silk scarves and ponchos of gold, pink, purple and turquoise.

“Her colors bleed together like butterfly wings,” said gallery co-owner Danny Burris. “Tami puts Marino wool through a pressure washing technique, and then kneads the wool into amazing patterns.”

But jewelry by talented American artists working throughout the Southwest is Handcrafted’s main focus. “We show Encinitas artist Gerhard Herbst’s fluid hammered silver earrings, collars and bracelets, and we display Alpine artist Denise Disharoon’s hammered silver geometric earrings and necklaces,” Burris said.

Handcrafted also carries Clare Johnston’s vermeil (22 karat gold over sterling silver) earrings and necklaces with blue chalcedony stones. Handcrafted’s 80 contributing artists create a range of ceramics, art, fiber art and home decor items, such as Leonie LaCoulette’s steel and oxidized copper clocks with moving pendulums.

“We feature functional home decor like wall sconces, candle holders, and wall hooks wrought by a blacksmith and a glassblower who creates ikebana arrangements,” Burris said

Unique ceramic pottery is also represented at Handcrafted, and the gallery works with Arizona artists Donna and Jeff Tousley. The couple uses a technique called slip training to create turquoise plates, platters, bowls and sculptural vases.

“They glaze their pieces with turquoise glaze, then mix a secondary navy blue glaze in a plastic bottle with a metal tip and draw patterns and images atop the first glaze; when it fires, it shows amazing detail,” Burris said.

Burris and business partner, Michael Gamble, have 28 years of retail experience and co-own and operate both their Solana Beach and Jerome, Arizona locations. “We carry only American handcrafts that customers won’t see anywhere else,” Burris said. “So we don’t compete with mass market clothing manufacturers or Pier 1 items.”

Burris said they first became interested in offering bespoke handcrafted American art pieces in Baton Rouge over 15 years ago. “We fell in love with the concept of carrying American handcrafted items because they’re so unique, and we like supporting American artists and so we opened the first store.”

After moving to North Carolina, Burns and Gamble opened two galleries. In 2003, they moved west to Jerome and opened their first Handcrafted gallery. Last year, they opened the Solana Beach location.

••• Handcrafted is open 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily at 415 South Cedros Ave., Suite 120, Solana Beach. (858) 847-2385.

The Business Spotlight features commercial enterprises that support the La Jolla Light.