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Things To Do in The Smoky Mountains


A B&B and Boutique Hotel Located in the Center of It All

potter working clay with knife

In Western North Carolina, you're never far from local pottery shops with working studios and galleries. Folks staying at Chalet Inn Bed & Breakfast or Chalet Suites Boutique Hotel who enjoy pottery of all different styles will have plenty of opportunities to shop for functional tableware, decorative pieces for the home, or that perfect unique gift for a friend. Here are some of our favorites…

Sylva / Dillsboro / Cullowhee

The Fiery Gizzard – Each piece of pottery offered is individually hand-turned and glazed, then kiln fired to 2,200 degrees at this Sylva NC pottery gallery. Mark and Anne Karner currently offer three standardized colors including a deep glossy blue, a speckled rust that ranges from glossy to semi-matte, and a most unique and complex copper red. Mark also considers special dinnerware orders. 7749 Great Smoky Mountain Expy. (Hwy. 74), Sylva. 828-631-1582.

Riverwood Pottery – Potters Brant and Karen Barnes are joined by their daughter Zan, in making pottery in traditional and contemporary glazes and styles. Brant's pottery takes many forms, but he leans towards functional tablewares, which he creates in many shapes familiar in North Carolina and Southern pottery, and in an array of beautiful glazes. Craft Circle, Dillsboro. 828-586-3601.

Treehouse Pottery – Owned and operated by potters, Joe Frank McKee and Travis Berning, this gallery showcases a wide variety of their pottery as well as works by several other potters. Joe and Travis are also featured at other galleries around the nation. 148 Front Street, Dillsboro. 828-631-5100.

Bryson City

Pincu Pottery – Elise Willa Pincu Delfield, a member of the Southern Highlands Craft Guild, makes beautiful, functional pottery on the wheel and with slabs of clay. She also teaches in the Heritage Arts Program at Southwestern Community College. 80 Highway 28 South (West of Bryson City). 828-488-0480.


Qualla Arts & Crafts – Founded in 1946, this long-running Native American cooperative continues to uphold a standard of excellence when it comes to the traditional arts and crafts of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. Showcasing the works of over 250 members, it offers a vast selection of high quality baskets, pottery, wood and stone carving, beadwork, and much more. 645 Tsali Blvd. (US 441). 828-497-3103.  

Joel Queen Gallery – As a member of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, Joel Queen is keeping Cherokee art alive. Visit his gallery and find many treasures including traditional Cherokee pottery, blackware, baskets, stone and wood sculptures. Joel also designs and sells miniature versions of the black legend bear sculptures that are placed throughout the town of Cherokee. 1036 US 441 North. 828-497-2444.


Mud Dabbers – This pottery and craft shop sells locally made functional and decorative hand-crafted pottery. Mud Dabbers opened in 1988, featuring the work of the John O. Dodson family and today they feature other local potters as well, providing an exceptional variety of pottery forms and styles. This shop has potters on site, and visitors are welcome to watch them at work. Pottery classes are offered. 20767 Great Smoky Mountain Expy. (Hwy. 74), Balsam. 828-456-1916.

Stecoah / Almond

Yellow Branch Pottery and Cheese – A family business operated by Karen Mickler and Bruce DeGroot. Karen produces functional stoneware using the potter's wheel and makes hand built pots as well. Bruce manages a herd of jersey cows whose milk is used to make artisanal cheese on the farm. Open April through November; other times by appointment. 1073 Old Yellow Branch Circle (off Hwy 28), Stecoah. 828-479-6710

Stecoah Gallery – Enjoy the works of local and area potters along with a wide variety of traditional and contemporary works: paintings, weaving, wood-turned items, glass works, photography, note cards, jewelry, soaps, quilts, books and much more. 121 Schoolhouse Road (off Hwy 28), Stecoah. 828-479-3364.

Hounds Hollow Pottery – Aaron Ely is a potter focusing on hand thrown horsehair and RAKU pottery at his gallery and studio. All pottery is hand thrown on the wheel by Aaron and he pays particular attention to finish and detail. One will find both functional and decorative pieces among his works. 1262 Tobacco Branch Road, Almond. 828-479-1007.