2021 Fall Craft Week

Work with your hands, your voice, and your craft to create beautiful handmade works of art as you make time for renewal in a community of artists.

September 26–October 1, 2021Adult
A Montreat Conference Center Event

This is the rescheduled date for the 2020 Fall Craft Week. If you have already transferred last year’s registration, you do not need to register again.

Come gain proficiency in an art form of your choice, and enjoy the community of other artists during a fall week in the mountains. This is a great opportunity for individuals or groups. Bring a group from your church, community, family, or come alone. We can help you figure out the details!

The Fall Craft Week is our quest here at Montreat Conference Center to celebrate the profound idea of “craft” in a world where technology dominates and where people mainly use their hands to operate smartphones and computers. Our goal is to bring people together as a community of artists working with our hands with natural materials, led by skilled leaders, offering time for creating, worship, singing, and quiet contemplation of these beautiful mountains, and building relationships through the arts, as we learn about ourselves and each other through the power of craft. Join us as we explore our creative, artistic spirits through writing, pottery, jewelry, fabric arts, Appalachian basketry, dulcimers, photography and stained glass!

Years ago M. C. Richards, renowned potter, came to Black Mountain College to teach poetry but ended up with her hands in clay. In her book Centering she defines the word craft as “…Craft, as you may know, comes from the German word Kraft, meaning power or strength. We can’t fake craft. It lies in the act.”¹

The idea wasn’t totally new. In fact, the Arts and Crafts Movement, which found real fruition in these mountains, had already introduced the idea of “craft” into an increasingly industrialized culture. “They sought to provide an alternative code to the harshness of late nineteenth-century industrialism, to foster spiritual harmony through the work process…(by encouraging) individualism, the creation of hand-made goods in place of machine uniformity, and a reappraisal of design materials.”²

Mark your calendars now, and plan to join this community of artists as we create our own craft! See more details below, including class offerings, instructors, registration, accommodations, and daily schedule.

Click here to view photos from the 2019 conference!


¹  M.C. Richards, Centering in Pottery, Poetry and the Person (Wesleyan University Press: Middleton, Connecticut, 1969) p. 12.
²  Elizabeth Coming and Wendy Kaplan, The Arts and Crafts Movement (Thames and Hudson: London, 2004) p. 9.


Class Offerings

Please choose one class for the entire week. Any materials fees for your class are in addition to the conference fee. We assign classes on a first-come, first-served basis. We reserve the right to cancel a class based on projected attendance. Register early to ensure a place in your class!

Dig into Clay: Pottery for Fun and Function! Becky Garrity - This class is now Full

Get away...! Immerse yourself in joyful clay work while you gain pottery hand building and wheel throwing skills. You will see the clay all the way through the process: from creating, to finishing, to glazing, to firing, to using! This workshop is open to those with and without experience with clay. We only require that you have a desire to learn and grow with clay as your medium!

  • Class limit: Class is currently full
  • Materials Fee: $50

Forged in Fire: Jewelry Metalsmithing Basics, Deb Guess

Learn to work with copper, brass, and sterling sheet and wire to create beautiful hand crafted jewelry. Learn the techniques for forming, soldering, cold connecting (rivets, wraps, and tabs), and creating findings (clasps, earwires, jumprings, and chains). Go home with several pieces of completed jewelry and an arsenal of design tips and practical skills. All necessary tools and supplies will be provided.

  • Class limit: 12
  • Class materials fee: $60

Appalachian Baskets: Beauty and Utility, Pat Brown

Baskets: They have a long history reaching back to the earliest human beings who, upon discovering that a large folded leaf or a network of sticks could carry more berries than two hands, evolved forms over the centuries which reflected both their needs and a sense of regional style with native materials. In the eastern US, one of these forms is the Appalachian Basket. The classic Egg Basket is well-known to us but there are actually several types in this genre, and in this workshop we will explore the possibilities. Let's make at least two traditional baskets: a small one to learn basket-weaving technique with reeds, and a second larger basket with more fun and challenging details.

No prior experience is necessary, just your desire to be a "maker!"

  • Class limit: 10
  • Class materials fee: $30

Fabric/Dyeing: “Fabric to Dye For!” Mark Montgomery and Leslie McCarthy - This class is now Full

Let's spend our days dying and manipulating different fabrics and yarns too! We will offer new and different techniques every day and everyone will work at their own pace in a very relaxed atmosphere. We will try dyeing, marbleizing, resist work, deconstructed screen printing, cyanotypes (weather permitting) and more. It’s all about the journey! Each day will include a short scripture meditation or prayer to guide your creative work. You will leave with lots of fabric and paper pieces to use in your artwork, whether in clothing, weaving, journals, liturgical banners, cards, framed artwork...the possibilities and outcomes are endless. Beads and embellishments will be available to create a finished piece of artwork if someone wants to go in that direction.

  • Class limit: 10
  • Class materials fee $50

Writing Your Name in the Snow, Ina Hughs

"Perhaps I write for no one. Perhaps for the same person children are writing for when they write their name in the snow." - Margaret Atwood

Does it matter who we write for? I don’t think so. But why do we want to write? Why do we struggle to get the right words in the right order, to take the risks a blank page offers? Why do we feel drawn to language, to stories - both our own and the stories of others? I am not sure that matters either. Asked that question, seasoned writers have different answers: “To taste life twice.” “To discover what I know.” “So reality can’t destroy us.” “To give birth to courage. “ “Because I have questions, not answers.”

Or because a blank piece of paper is God telling us how hard it is to be God.

So come to this class if you are interested in putting the right words in the right order in ways that the magic comes through. We will seek to get better at the things that make for evocative writing, whatever the genre and whatever the message. We will work off carefully chosen assignments set up to help us with imagery, humor, imagination, voice, characterizations and memory. We will learn from each other, and from the effort it takes to discover and give life to what we have to say.

I’ve heard that a writer and a spider are to be feared above all creatures because they both hang by a thread spun out of their own guts. It’s too early for Halloween spiders, but we are sure to meet jugglers, clowns, lion tamers, maybe a few ghosts - and a room full of magicians. 

And I can pretty much promise that regardless of why-ever or for whomever you write, doing it brings its own reward.

  • Class limit: 12
  • No materials fee

Fun with Photography, Joye Ardyn Durham
This class is based on pure fun and alternative ways to take photos. We will cover ICM (intentional camera movement), abstracts, long exposure, light painting, and crystal ball photography. Bring your close-up lens as well as neutral density filter and polarizer. A basic knowledge of how your camera works is needed to take this class. We will also be going to different locations to take photos.

  • Class limit: 10
  • Materials fee: $20

Creating with Stained Glass, Roger Maness - This class is now Full
Whether learning the basics or improving your skills, join us to build your own stained glass creations. Brian Maness will be Roger’s assistant.

  • Class limit: 15
  • Materials fee: $50

Dulcimer Making, Dick Porter and Howard Moore
Come join us for a fun class making a mountain dulcimer. All materials are supplied to enable participants to complete a four-stringed Appalachian mountain lap dulcimer. This year's dulcimer will include the extra 6 1/2 fret which gives more flexibility in playing. The instrument will be constructed from selected walnut with Chestnut soundboards, which came from damaged church pews from Montreat Conference Center’s Anderson Auditorium. Mechanical tuning pegs, which enable easier and more accurate tuning, will be used. The week will also include time to make a dulcimer stand that permits displaying or storing on a shelf or piano top. There should be time to practice playing, as well.

  • Class limit: 10
  • Materials fee: $60

Rates & Registration

Comprehensive Rate

Comprehensive rates below include conference fee of $250, room in Assembly Inn (Sunday through Thursday nights), meals in the Galax Dining Room (Sunday supper through Friday breakfast), plus a $5 community services fee per adult for public services provided by the Town and the fire district. Materials fee will be added manually by the registrar before charging your credit card. Rooms are assigned on a first come, first served basis. After August 16, rates will increase by $25. Room check-in AFTER 3:00 pm on Sunday. Room check-out BEFORE 11:00 am on Friday.

Assembly Inn
Single Occupancy, Private Bath: $944.00
Double Occupancy, Private Bath: $681.50 per person ($1363.00 total)

Single Occupancy, Private Bath: $694.00
Double Occupancy, Private Bath: $556.50 per person ($1113.00 total)

Commuter Rate

Rates below include a conference fee of $250, plus a $5 community services fee per person for public services provided by the Town and the fire district. Materials fee will be added manually by the registrar before charging your credit card. Commuter rate does not include lodging or meals.

On or before August 16: $255 per person
After August 16: $280 per person


Scholarships are available for this conference.

Contact the Registrar

If you have any questions about the registration process, please email the registrar at SusanA@montreat.org or call 828.419.9829.


Sunday, September 26, 2021
3:30-5:30 pm, Registration, Assembly Inn
5:30-6:30 pm – Dinner
7:00 pm – Opening Presentation and Concert, followed by a Wine and Cheese Reception, Upper Anderson

Monday, September 27, 2021
7:30-8:30 am – Breakfast
8:30-9:00 am – Morning Gathering, Upper Anderson
9:15-12:15 pm – BLOCK ONE
12:15-1:15 pm – Lunch
2:00-5:00 pm – BLOCK TWO
5:30-6:30 pm – Dinner
6:45-8:00pm "Crafts Worth Coming Back For! Community Art Making!" Barn

Tuesday, September 28, 2021
7:30-8:30 am – Breakfast
8:30-9:00 am – Morning Gathering, Upper Anderson
9:15-12:15 pm – BLOCK THREE
12:15-1:15 pm – Lunch
2:00-5:00 pm – BLOCK FOUR
5:30-6:30 pm – Dinner
6:45-8:00pm "Crafts Worth Coming Back For! Community Art Making!" Barn

Wednesday, September 29, 2021
7:30-8:30 am – Breakfast
8:30-9:00 am – Morning Gathering, Upper Anderson
9:15-12:15 pm – BLOCK FIVE
12:15-1:15 pm – Lunch
2:00-5:00 pm – BLOCK SIX
5:30-6:30 pm – Dinner
7:00 pm – Free Evening

Thursday, September 30, 2021
7:30-8:30 am – Breakfast
8:30-9:00 am – Morning Gathering, Upper Anderson
9:15-12:15 pm – BLOCK SEVEN
12:15-1:15 pm – Lunch
2:00-5:00 pm – BLOCK EIGHT
5:30-6:30 pm – Dinner
6:45 Evening Presentation: "Celebrating Community!" Upper Anderson

Friday, October 1, 2021
7:30-8:30 am – Breakfast
9:00 am-12:00 noon – POTTERY CLASS ONLY
1:00 pm – Pick up pottery

Child care is not provided during this event

Check-in/Check-out for Housing
  • Housing Check-in: Sunday, September 26, 2021 AFTER 3:00 pm
  • Housing Check-out: Friday, October 1, 2021 BEFORE 11:00 am

Refund Policy

Cancellations must be received by August 16 in order to receive a full refund less a $25 service charge. Cancellations received after August 16, but on or before September 20 will receive a 50% refund of the conference fee and payments made toward room and meal charges (if applicable), less $40. No refunds will be issued after September 20. All requests must be made in writing and received via email, fax, or U.S. mail.

Phone Number


Physical Address

401 Assembly Drive
Montreat, NC 28757

Mailing Address

Montreat Conference Center
PO 969
Montreat, NC 28757

Business Office

Montreat Conference Center
318 Georgia Terrace
Montreat, NC 28757

The Montreat Store

Moore Center, Second Floor
303 Lookout Road
Montreat, NC 28757

© 2021 Montreat Conference Center

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