Steamboat Clay Artisans’ annual event to fill Depot today, Saturday |

Steamboat Clay Artisans’ annual event to fill Depot today, Saturday

Mike Lawrence

Potter Deb Babcock is hard at work inside her shop, Blue Sky Pottery, creating items for the Holiday Pottery Sale, which is today and Saturday at Depot Art Center.

— Sue Binsfeld knew this week that she'd have items to sell at the annual Holiday Pottery Sale today and Saturday at Depot Art Center on 13th Street.

She just didn't know what those items would look like.

Binsfeld, who works as a courier for FedEx, makes pottery out of a home studio and is the de facto treasurer for the Steamboat Clay Artisans, loaded up her kiln with items for a firing Monday night in anticipation of the Clay Artisans' huge annual sale at the Depot.

Then the kiln broke.

"I don't know how any of it looks yet, so I don't know," she said Tuesday about her potential pottery. "It's all going to be a surprise at the end. I'll find out when it's done."

Binsfeld said she quickly got on the phone with an electrician and was hoping for a successful firing Tuesday night. She was planning a variety of goods for this weekend's sale.

Recommended Stories For You

"I'm hoping to have some egg separators and some different bowls and vases and assorted things," she said.

That kind of variety is a trademark of the annual pottery sale, which Deb Babcock, of Blue Sky Pottery, said will feature hundreds of pieces this year, ranging from high-end vases and sculptures to simpler items such as turkey platters, holiday ornaments, bowls, mugs and more. Clay artisans from across the Yampa Valley will display and sell their work.

"It's also a nice variety of techniques," Babcock said, referring to the artisans' diversity of styles and methods.

The annual pottery sale began in 2002.

Babcock said the pottery sale is "kind of like a show opening," especially tonight, when food and wine will be available and people sometimes show up just to look.

"We usually end up filling the Depot pretty well," Babcock said. "It was so crowded last year on Friday (of the weekend event). Everybody was in a very festive mood."

Binsfeld said the sale's social atmosphere is a big side benefit of the annual chance to show and sell her work.

"I love getting together with my friends and having good camaraderie, talking about new ideas and what we've been up to," she said.