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Handmade Tile Association Newsletter


11th Year


2010 directory We have just wrapped up the 12th annual Handmade Tile Association directory drive.  Thank you so much to everyone who has returned and new advertisers. As well as those who have come before this edition.  This might seem common at this point but every year is a milestone to be continually celebrated.  We should be thankful for this diverse set of tile and mosiac artists, tile setters, tile centers, designs, historicans, art centers, organizations and the like that can come together to organize and produce this amazing publication. 

The 2011 edition will be laid out over the next few weeks and there will be a proofing party on November 16th and 17th from 11 - 5 at Clay Squared to Infinity.  Everyone who advertised will get a electronic proof to view and sign off on. 

The Tile Heritage Foundation has provided us with 3 cover choices for the 2011 season.  All current members will recieve a vote via an e-mail.  You will also get to vote on board members and tile festival issues.  

In This Issue
Seattle tile trip
We are not alone any more
Groupon and Mercury Mosaics
Volunteer thanks
Join us on Facebook
Welcome new and renewing member
November Jobs
Seattle tile trip

In October The Artisan Tile North West ATNW invited and paid for Josh Blanc, President of the Handmade Tile Association, to come out to Seattle to attend the ATNW 4th annual tile festival.  Mosaic HorseJosh juried their exhibit and give a talk to their members.  Josh talked to a very enthusiastic group of tile and mosaic artists wanting to learn from the ideas and concepts the HTA has been developing.  He encouraged them to colaborate with the HTA directory (some have already done so Dean Tile, Tile Restoration Centers, Convergence Design) and help them navagate some of the pitfalls of growth and management. 

The ATNW tile festival was a great show taking place in a historic building in Seattle.  They drew 400 plus people with 14 artist vendors.  They did a two day event with a Friday evening 6 - 9 opening and a Saturday 10 - 5 sale.  The similarities between the HTA's MN tile festival and the ATNW tile festival were very striking.  The same type of questions from patrons, the same issues of advertising to an audience were prevalent, similar sales, and similar group dynamics of artists getting to meet and get to know each other and become colleagues of each other.

Claire Dohna with Mosaic EggsCarol Dean and Steve Moon also took Josh on a tour of tile artists studios all over Seattle and up to Portland.  You can see photos of the work on the facebook page and see the whole trip. 

Carol Dean is working on a national tile conference with the Potters Council for June 2011. They are lining up a great group of presenters and workshop.  All HTA members should consider attending. More info will be forth coming in upcoming newsletters and in the 2011 directory.

We are not alone any more

The Artisan Tile North West located in Seattle WA has just published their first publication of a tile and mosaic artist directory!  ATNW cover of directoryThis is big and great news that the polifiration of artisan tile groups are growing and thriving.  The Handmade Tile Association has been encouraging many tile groups to organize for years.  Every directory and organized tile group that develops helps create the sense that using handmade tiles as part of American culture is normal.  The more the public gets used to seeing handmade tile and mosaics the more they will see it as what they want in their homes and businesses.  To get a copy of this new directory contact Steve Moon.  Congratulations and we look forward to colaborating with ATNW for many years to come. 

Groupon and Mercury Mosaics

Mercury Mosaics recently took on a mass media advertising concept called Groupon This is the first the time the HTA is aware that a
tile artist has done this type of advertising and we wanted to share
their experience. Groupon is a concept that has taken off in the past
year nationwide (It is not in all cities yet).  The way it works is

businesses that are willing to give deep discounts 50% to 90% off products, services and events then put them out to their subscriber list of hundreds of thousands of people every day. The deals are activated only when a minimum number of people agree to buy. Their subscribers get a great deal and the business of the day gets a ton of new customers.

Each class Mercury Mosaics offered was $35 on the Groupon sale their
usual price for a one day, 3 hour class is $80.  Mercury Mosaics has to
also give 50% commission to Groupon of each $35 sign up. Mercury
Mosaics planned for 2,000 people thinking never in a million years
would get 2,000 people buy a class, but lo-and-behold they all sold.
$70,000 of classes in one day a gross of $35,000 for Mercury Mosaics!

Mercedes says "For me, instead of spending $800-$1200/month on print
ads, I am making 2 - 4 times that from the classes and using the
classes as my pool to draw from for local projects. Now, some of the
students will NEVER use us for a project, but they will tell their
friends. Word of mouth referral is huge and I want to spread the
experience of our tile studio to many and this has proven to be a
fantastic way to boost our cash flow, free up tile that has been
laying around forever and drum up a fresh way to educate people on our
design services and the vast array of handmade tile that we make."

Volunteer thanks and corrections

Last month we made an error on the names of volunteers who helped at the MN Tile Festival and we wanted to thank those who were there this year not last. Thanks to the American Swedish Institutes volunteers who ran the gate, tours, food and set up and take down.  We could not have done it with out you all.

Jeanne Sielaff
Ron Hovda
Rod Erickson
Marisa Gonzalez
Deloris Anderson
Nicole Ellis
Cecelia Perry
Hanife Cakici
Harlan Widholm
Keith Elstad

Also in the mentioning of our new photographer this year I failed to say who she was.  Melissa Copon Photography took all of our great photos and has been an active part of the HTA this year as the Spotlight for Artist coordinator.  Thanks for all your work.

In October's Spotlight on Artists Sheryl Tuorila image link went to the wrong artist.  Here is the correct link

Join us on Facebook
The Handmade Tile Association is doing regular updates and we invite our members to post new projects and artwork they have completed. 
To join the Handmade Tile Association fan page click this icon Find us on Facebook

Our next meeting will is our proofing party November 16th and 17th from 11 - 5 both days at Clay Squared to Infinity.  Every advertiser will get an electronic proof but we always look for our members to review the directory to make sure it looks awesome.  Please come in and look it over and get your sneak peak. 

We are looking for venues to have meetings in 2011.  If you would like to host a meeting please contact the HTA to set one up.

If you are not in the Minnesota region consider creating a meeting of tile and mosaic artists in your area.  The HTA can promote your meeting through this newsletter and on the website, Facebook, and Linked in. It is a great way to learn and promote tile ideas.


Josh Blanc
Handmade Tile Association.LLC
Quick Links check out all the new info
Events button

Classes and Workshop Link

Gallery Show Link

Things to Know About Link
Welcome new and renewing members

Business Members

Red Step Studio

Jim Boles Designs

Hjelle Studio


Gary L. Quirk



The Tile Mechanic

Bread & Roses Remodeling

Pearson Art Works

Jane Swan

Deb LeAir

SOMI Tileworks

Stephanie Kaczrowski

Stone Hollow Tile

Nancy Froseth

MN ceramic supply

Duluth Pottery

In Plain Sight Art

Tile Restoration Center

La Alameda Press

Emily Dyer Ceramics

Potek Glass

Barbara Schmidt

Kerber Tile

Bon Ton Designs

Sheryl Tuorila

Jan Hohn

Earth Wood and Fire
C Wilson Design.LLC

Cabin Fever Pottery
Judith Witt - Croswhte

Tina Schowalter

New Super Members

Continental Clay

D'Arte Designs

Sharon Tuthill

Woodland Stoves & Fireplaces

Institute of Mosaic Art


Renewals of Super Members

Clay Squared to Infinity

Louis Richard Voigt

North Prairie Tile Inc.

Sligo Creek Tile

Pewabic Pottery

weaver tile

American Restoration Tile

Mayco Colors

Mercury Mosaics

Leann E Johnson

Christine Nelson Design

Friend Membership
Rebecca Rayman
Susan Shaughnessy
Melissa Bean

Non Profit Membership
American Museum of
Ceramic Art

Thank you!
November Jobs
5 Hours button
Get your 5 hours in!

1.The Handmade Tile Association continues its national growth we need artist on the ground to be the face, eyes and ears of the HTA.  We believe each artist knows their area info hotspots best and we are looking to map out all the places that should have a stack of HTA directories.  We need HTA volunteers to find and document all of the art centers, Clay suppliers, galleries, tile setters, design centers, and other places the directory should be available for the public and the trades to pick up.  We need the contact information ie company, address, phone #, e mail and website so we have a list that we can put on the website for the people to view where they can pick up a copy and to give the sense that handmade tile and mosaics are everywhere.  In return you will get your 5 hours of volunteering in and save $120 on your advertising in your directory advertising.2. Data Entry we have lots of new info that needs to be entered from the directory drive.  We need your help!

3.  Host a meeting in 2011 and get your 5 hours in.  If you are in another part of the country consider hosting a meeting of artists near you and get more organized.  We can send you directories, info, and help with topics.

Click here to tell us what you can do

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Spaces Magazine Logo and link

Tile Heritage Foundation logo and link