April 2017 Gallery Night, Art, Classes and Book Events at Artisan Gallery 218!

Court Avenue D.M. Farmer's Market_M.HeikesOur next exhibit will be unveiled during Valley Junction’s Gallery Night, April 21st.  This special evening will be from 5:00 pm to 9:00 pm that Friday night.  We will also have wine, food, and entertainment, as well as a chance to meet the artists!  In addition, explore Mary Kline-Misol’s ‘Children in Trees, and the Man in the Moon’ exhibit of paintings.  Hope you can come!

We are hosting a number of classes and events over the next month-plus.  The Links below will take you to full information about each on our website as well as a way to register and pay for each class [some classes have limited room, so be sure to register beforehand]:
bangle bracelet

Wired Gemstone Bangle Bracelet Class on Sat, April 22nd, 10 – 11am, taught by our own Louise McIlhon, Gemstones Jewelry.  Choose your stones and either gold or silver non-tarnish wire.


New Moon Bracelet Class by Katie Geraty, Stone Bone Wood Cloth on April 24 bracelets7th  7 – 9pm.    Create your intention bracelet from hand-dyed silk cords and a selection of gemstone beads and sterling silver charms that uniquely represent what you want to manifest in your life.



Nuno Felted Ruffle Scarf Class on Friday, May 5th  10 – 5:00pm taught by Seattle Fiber Artist, Hilary Hutchinson Grant.  Nuno felting is a process where wool fiber migrates through the weave of a fabric and bonds to the fabric during the process of felting and fulling. Felting equipment, fiber, silk gauze, and a handout is included in the supply fee.  Hurry, you must sign up for this class by April 24th!

nuno feltnuno felt scarf 2nuno felt scarf 3




Botanical Print workshop on May 6th & 7th taubotanical classght by Seattle Fiber Artist, Hilary Hutchinson Grant.  She has been experimenting with various techniques of eco and botanical printing and is here to teach us how to obtain beautiful clear and crisp leaf prints using natural and acid dyes as well as mordants and modifiers.  Hurry, you must sign up for this class by April 24th! 

We are hosting three book events through the month of April, starting at 6:30 pm – full details are at the Gallery website.
Monday, 4/3 – Rena Olsen author of “The Girl Before” will discuss the topic of human trafficking with Terry Hernandez, executive director of The Chrysalis Foundation.
Monday, 4/10 – Deb Landwehr Engle and Jean Baker will discuss the topics of their books, “Letting Your Spirit Guides Speak” and “Letting Go”
Monday, 4/17 – we will have eight nationally renowned Iowa writers win celebration of National Poetry Month.

Stay tuned for May happenings, some of which are linked above:  there will be book events on Monday nights during May and come see the new works of our artists! Drop in any time [we are open Tuesday through Saturday] and enjoy the art and ambience of Artisan Gallery 218. Check our website or Facebook page to stay up to date!



Spring 2017 Art, Classes, and Events

We had an enjoyable evening in mid-February during our opening reception for  ‘New Works’.  If you were not able to make it,  here is a small list of the variety of new work on display now through April 15th:   Three sculptures ‘The Personalities’ by Annick Ibsen. ‘The Wives of Henry’ – 6 museum quality portraits of the wives of Henry VIII by Mary Kline-Misol.  Iconic Des Moines landmark collages by Marybeth Heikes.  New archival quality photographic Images of spring flowers by Jacqueline Stoken.  A New line of botanical printed vests and light-weight ponchos by Janet Bergeron and Annie Williams Temple!

Drop in any time [we are open Tuesday through Saturday] and enjoy the art and ambience of Artisan Gallery 218.

springAwaken to Spring and learn something new!  We have some exciting classes coming  up!   The Links below will take you to full information about each on our website as well as a way to register and pay for each class:



vicky class


Photography classes on March 14th [Art] & 28th [Technology], learn how to create your own artistic images through composition and software.  Set your pictures apart of the usual shots so they convey something special about your subject.

annie classIndigo dye & Shibori fabric and scarf class on March 18th.  You will dye a Habutai silk scarf and (2) 12″ squares of fabric using Indigo dye and ancient Shibori techniques.


new moon class 1 copyMake & Take:  New Moon bracelet class by Katie Geraty, Stone Bone Wood Cloth on April 27thCreate your intention bracelet from hand-dyed silk cords and a selection of gemstone beads and sterling silver charms that uniquely represent what you want to manifest in your life.

cobweb classIntroduction to cobweb felting on April 29th, taught by Seattle Fiber Artist, Hilary Hutchinson Grant.  Hilary is known for her wet felted scarves and she is here to teach us how to make a Cobweb scarf for ourselves.


nuno feltNuno Felted Ruffle Scarf Class on April 30th taught by Seattle Fiber Artist, Hilary Hutchinson Grant.  Nuno felting is a process where wool fiber migrates through the weave of a fabric and bonds to the fabric during the process of felting and fulling. Felting equipment, fiber, silk gauze, and a handout is included in the supply fee.

botanical classBotanical Printing – a 1 or 2 day Botanical Print workshop on May 6th & 7th taught by Seattle Fiber Artist, Hilary Hutchinson Grant.  Hilary has been experimenting with various techniques of eco and botanical printing and is here to teach us how to obtain beautiful clear and crisp leaf prints using natural and acid dyes as well as mordants and modifiers.

Artisan Gallery 218 welcomes our latest artist, Patricia Davis! Patricia lived overseas for 40 years teaching for the Department of Defense Overseas Schools and retired to her hometown of Des Moines a few years ago.


“We all live in a world of color. To work with color is inspiring. It is a universal language that needs no translation. It has the power to explain and excite, sadden or stir, arouse yet calm. My passion for color has grown over many years. Color is my tool. I use it to create, interpret or represent. Like Matisse, I use color to create or express how I feel. This is the purpose of my work.”

New Works April 21 – Jun 10 and spring Gallery Night:

Join us for Spring Gallery Night April 21 from 5 – 9pm!  Enjoy food, wine, and entertainment while you mingle with the artists and peruse our new exhibit.  Explore Mary Kline-Misol’s paintings ‘Children in Trees and the Man in the Moon’ as well as other new works.

April Book Events.

the-girl-beforeThe Girl Before’:  In her powerful psychological suspense debut, author Rena Olsen asks readers to consider the unthinkable. When a woman’s life is shattered, what if everything she thought was normal and good and true . . . wasn’t?

Olsen will appear at Artisan Gallery 218 on April 3 at 6:30 PM to sign copies of her book, The Girl Before. It tells the story of Clara Lawson who is torn from her life in an instant, as armed men invade her home. Without warning, she finds herself separated from her beloved husband and daughters and the very last thing her husband yells to her is to “say nothing.”

Letting Go & Letting Your Spirit Guides Speak:  

As always, check our calendar, facebook, and website frequently for the latest in new events and classes!  happy-spring-quotes



Wine, Women, and Words – Plus Holiday Shopping!

Invite your friends and head to Valley Junction on Monday, December 5th for a fun and free event featuring five Sisters in Crime.  Join authors Sparkle Abbey, Dawn Eastman, Anna Loan-Wilsey, and Jody Vorbrich at this holiday mix and mingle hosted by Artisan Gallery 218.  The store opens that day at 10:00 AM.  These talented local authors will share their writing experiences, beginning at 6:30 PM.  The store will stay open past its regular Monday hours (10:00 AM to 6:00 PM) for this special event.

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Sparkle Abbey is the writing duo of MaryLee Woods and Anita Carter.  They are friends and neighbors as well as co-writers of the Pampered Pets Mystery Series. Their pen name was created by combining the names of their rescue pets – Sparkle (Mary Lee’s cat) and Abbey (Anita’s dog). They reside in central Iowa, but if they could write anywhere, you would find them on the beach with their laptops and depending on the time of day either an iced tea or a margarita.) Their books include: Desperate Housedogs, Get Fluffy, Kitty Kitty Bang Bang, Yip/Tuck, Fifty Shades of Greyhound, and The Girl with the Dachshund Tattoo.

When Dawn Eastman was ten years old, her two favorite things were climbing trees and reading. She loved to read Nancy Drew books, but eventually moved on to Hercule Poirot, Sherlock Holmes, and Stephanie Plum.   She lived many years in Michigan, but now calls Iowa home.  She is the author of many cozy mysteries, including Pall in the Family, Be Careful What You Witch For, A Fright to the Death, and An Unhappy Medium. 

Anna Loan-Wilsey lives in a Victorian farmhouse in the Iowa countryside with her patient husband, inquisitive six-year-old daughter and old yellow dog.  She was born and raised in Syracuse, NY but has lived in Finland, Canada and Texas. She is a biologist, librarian, information specialist, and now with the Hattie Davish Mysteries Series, a novelist.  A March to Remember, her new book, is set in Washington, DC.  She is a proud member of Sleuths In TimeMystery Writers of America, and Sisters-in-Crime.

Jody Nolan Vorbrich grew up on a farm southwest of Dubuque and now lives with her husband in Clive. She has three children, four stepchildren, and sixteen grandchildren. She received her Bachelor of Science in Education from Drake University.  Her books, Murder in Central Standard Time, and Missing in Central Standard Time are set in the fictional town of Holland, Iowa, which is loosely based on Pella.

Be sure to take some time to enjoy refreshments and consider the original art available for holiday gifts.  Artisan Gallery 218 plans to offer a series of monthly book events highlighting local writers.  Beaverdale Books will have books available for sale and signing. For more information, call the Gallery at: 255-0218.

Year of Thanks, Week of Savings!

Artisan Gallery 218, in historic Valley Junction, is celebrating its First Anniversary and Thanksgiving with a week of savings on Victoria Herring’s photography of “World Tour Images” starting Monday November 21st!

Herring’s lens captures colorful, indelible impressions of people and places — near and far.  Suitable for framing, her photos make ideal gifts for travelers and armchair wanderers.  Celebrate with up to 50% off!
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Also enjoy 50% off selected wood art objects by Tom Whalley!

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Open Monday through Saturday Thanksgiving week. Closed on Thursday for the holiday.

Make Artisan Gallery 218 your holiday shopping destination!

Artisan Gallery 218 Named in US News Travel Magazine!!

In a recent article in US News/World Report Travel Magazine, Artisan Gallery 218 was named as a ‘standout art spot’ in their article,  ’10 Underrated Cities for Art Lovers’!

10 Underrated Cities for Art Lovers | U.S. News Travel

Des Moines, Iowa

“How much do you know about Des Moines? This capital city has a 28-piece sculpture park smack dab in the heart of downtown, along with plenty of public art displays throughout greater Des Moines. Plus, many local restaurants display local artists works on the side of their buildings or on their walls. Standout art spots include the Des Moines Social Club, the Moberg Gallery, the Des Moines Art Center and Artisan Gallery 218. Plus, the popular annual Des Moines Arts Festival, which includes live music, performing arts and visual arts, has received prestigious accolades.”

Checkout the full article here…     Awesome!!

Artisan Gallery 218 Update 8/30/16

Well it has been 7 weeks since we moved out of the Gallery and emergency repairs began!  The founding partners, Annie Temple, Mary Kline-Misol,  Victoria Herring, and Louise Mcilhon have kept busy in their personal lives working on neglected house projects, elder care, family time, creating art, and vacations!

Annie Temple

Annie’s son John has returned from Germany and has achieved his lifelong dream of becoming a ‘Master Brewer’!  Annie has been creating more scarves using the ‘eco printing’ method that uses plants and flowers from her garden to dye the silk chiffon fabric.  She will be offering classes this fall on this technique just in time for making Christmas gifts!

Botanical Printed Scarf Oakleaf detail
Botanical Printed Scarf Oakleaf detail

Mary Kline-Misol

Mary has been nursing her mother back to health who is recovering nicely from a broken hip and femur.  At age 93 she is doing very well thanks to Mary’s care-giving.  Mary also tends to her beautiful flower garden and continues to paint in her studio.

Victoria Herringvictoria

Victoria continues to whittle away at her list of house projects and travel plans. Her travels have included a trip to Phoenix, a family reunion on San Juan Island, traveling through the North Cascades of Washington, and Morocco!   You may see some evidence of her travels on the Gallery walls this fall!

Louise Mcilhon

Louise continues to hone her construction skills by dismantling the kitchen cabinetry in the Gallery, putting up lattice around her cedar deck, and building a tool organizer in her garage.  She has also enjoyed traveling to the Fall Tucson Gem Show, and fishing trips to Lake Galena, IL, and salmon fishing in Wisconsin! Still, her de-stress activity is making jewelry!

Now for the Construction Update…

The walls and ceiling have all been studded and framed.  Starting this week, the contractors will start putting up drywall in the ceiling and the top of the walls. When the drywall is complete, the original tin ceiling will be re-installed and then cleaning and painting will start.  The brick wall will remain as is, and everything else  will be painted white including the tin ceiling, HVAC runs, and ductwork.  Finally, all new LED linear track lights will be installed.

Our landlord is still working toward an October 1st re-occupancy date but then it will take us several days of moving in and hanging art before our re-opening!  We will make announcements as soon as we can finalize our plans.


We look forward to seeing you in the fall!

We appreciate your past patronage and hope to see you back in the gallery this fall!


Louise, Annie, Mary, Vicky

Artisan Gallery 218 Construction Update Aug 4th

Hello Everyone!  We thought you might be interested in what is going on in the gallery.  Here is a brief update:

The entire ceiling has been removed and the interior of the gallery is being prepped for construction = nails being pulled, etc.  The joists in the space are all being raised in the center where there was a small bow and repaired from previous remodels.

The ceiling will be about 2 ft. higher than before so they are prepping to sheet rock the top of all existing walls to the ceiling.  The original tin ceiling will be reinstalled for the majority of the gallery.  Everything in the gallery will be painted white.  There will be a combination of LED Linear lights and track lighting throughout the space.

Overall the space will be spectacular!  We are sparing little cost to make it safe, beautiful and highly functional in a variety of purposes.

We are working toward an October 1st re-occupancy date.  Grand Re-opening date will follow once we are moved back in and the new exhibit is ready!

News Release – Temporary Closure Due to Construction

Date: July 14, 2016
For Immediate Release
Contact: Victoria Herring
515-255-0218 or Curator@ArtisanGallery218.com

Business Looking Up in Valley Junction

West Des Moines, IA – Business has been looking up for Artisan Gallery 218, a recently established art gallery in Valley Junction. The artist-owned gallery is the realization of a dream shared by four renowned Iowa women artists.

 Then on Monday, July 11, when the gallery is typically closed, one of the owners literally looked up. The faux ceiling in the century-old building showed a buckle. It’s a fine point of difference, but artists have a keen eye for dimension, lines and change.

The landlord was contacted immediately. A contractor’s inspection revealed the hidden original ceiling (three feet above the visible ceiling) has been shedding its 100-year-old plaster. The plaster weight was bearing down on the current 12-foot-high ceiling.

Scrambling to remove art that could be at risk during construction, the gallery owners did not open for business Tuesday, July 12, and have temporarily closed the gallery until the ceiling is repaired. Artisan Gallery 218 has been a destination for people searching for art by Iowa artists as well as the site of numerous cultural and educational events in Valley Junction.

“We will be rescheduling events and reopening for business at Artisan Gallery 218 when construction repairs are completed in several weeks. Looking up, this means we can have another Grand Opening,” said one of the artist-owners, Victoria Herring.

Until then, the fine art paintings and sculptures, handcrafted fabrics, global photography, and one-of-a-kind jewelry may be viewed and reserved online at www.ArtisanGallery218.com. The website also links to those of the featured artists. Private viewings may also be arranged at another location by calling 515-255-0218.

Events and Classes for July 2016!

‘Town & Country’ Exhibition Continues through August 4th

The works of Janet Bergeron and Marybeth Heikes continue on display.  Plus a number of new works of the other artisans, including newcomers Annick Ibsen, Jacqueline Stoken and Katie Geraty – Stone Bone Wood Cloth.

Hot - New Work
Hot – New Work


Valley Junction All-Iowa Bash

Sunday July 3rd – we will be open 12 – 4pm. Celebrate America!  Join Valley Junction for a revamped celebration of the United States and all things IOWA!!  Try food and drink from local Iowa vendors, crafts from Iowa makers, music from Iowa bands, and more!

Eco Scarf Printing Class

Make and Take Class by Annie Temple – learn how to print a silk chiffon scarf using flowers and greenery on Sat, July 9th from 2:00 – 5:00.  Details can be found here.

eco print eco print3 eco print2





Valley Junction Christmas in July and Sidewalk Sale, Fri/Sat July 15-16:

We will be participating and will have some works on sale, both on the sidewalk and in the Gallery.  Come and get some great sales pre-holiday season!!

Book Talk Monday, July 18th from 6:30 – 8:00pm

Come hear Iowa Authors, Sparkle Abbey, discuss their latest book, Raiders of the Lost Bark, Book Eight in the ‘Pampered Pet Mysteries’.

Exhibit News!

One of our artists, Annick Ibsen, will have sculpture on exhibit at the ARC Gallery in Chicago, 2156 N Damen Ave., in the ‘It Figures: The Body in Art’ exhibition June 22 – Jul 16.  Congratulations Annick!

Extended Shopping Hours during Valley Junction Events!  We will be open and joining in the various Valley Junction events in July and are open most Thursday evenings for the VJ Farmer’s Market.

RAGBRAI crosses Iowa 7/24-7/30 and a number of our artists have bicycle-themed works in the gallery for that perfect gift!

Coming in August… Aug 2nd New Moon Bracelet Workshop by Katy Geraty – Stone Bone Wood Cloth.  Don’t forget to sign up for this popular session!  See more information here.

SAVE THE DATE!  Our next opening of New Works is on Friday, August 5th from 5pm-7pm 

Our calendar on our website is continually updated as we add new offerings.  Check back frequently!.

Other classes, events, and new artists are in the planning stages.  If you have any ideas, requests or suggestions for classes, events or artists please send us a note:  Curator@ArtisanGallery218.com.

Events and Classes for June 2016!

Exhibition ‘Town & Country’:  The main event in June is the opening of our next exhibit, Town & Country which will focus on exploring the vistas of country, towns, and cities with an opening evening reception on Friday night, June 10th featuring artists:  Janet Bergeron and Marybeth Heikes.  Come and join us for a wonderful evening, 5pm-7pm.

Pilot Alone in the AirHeikes_Ragbrai





Father’s Day Gift Make & Take Class:  fish hook braceletLouise Mcilhon will be offering a class for ages 10 and up to make your choice of gifts – either a fish hook leather bracelet or leather key chain with your personal stamped message.  Class Dates: June 9th or June 16th from 5:30 pm-6:30 pm.  Pre-registration is required – see our website for details.

Dad leather key chain
Welcome our newest artist, Annick Ibsen!  Annick_janShe’s a well known sculptor and painter with a diverse background forming the basis for her art. Since her first paintings in 1995, her work has evolved from pure figurative portraits to cubist interpretations.  Annick is a resident artist at the Ankeny Art Center and in 2012 was awarded the People’s Choice Prize for sculpture installation. Come see Annick’s sculptures in the gallery and learn more about her on our website.

The Gallery welcomes Katie Geraty, founder of Stone Bone Wood Cloth!stone bone wood cloth 1
The intention behind Stone Bone Wood Cloth is the idea that we live and we create and we become a collection of all our intentions.  Hand-made unglazed porcelain vessels and cloth tassels incorporate metaphysical properties of gemstones that help us focus our intentions.    Read more about her here.
Book Launch Event Monday, June 27th from 6p-8p for Kali VanBaale, an Iowa author, and her second novel “The Good Divide”.  “VanBaale presents a vivid portrait of one woman’s lifelong struggle to find peace with what she has rather than what she desires. Fiction doesn’t get more real than this.” ~Publishers Weekly   www.kalivanbaale.com

Extended Shopping Hours!  We are going to be open and joining in the various Valley Junction events in June on an occasional basis and we will be open most Thursday evenings for the VJ Farmer’s Market.

Classes & Events:  Our calendar on our website is continually updated as we add new offerings.  Check back frequently!.

Coming in July and August…. We will have another book talk July 18th with Sparkle Abbey that dog, cat, and art lovers will be sure to enjoy, and August 2nd is a return of the New Moon Bracelet Class.  Other classes, events, and new artists are in the planning stages.  If you have any ideas or suggestions for class, events or artists, please send us a note to:  curator@ArtisanGallery218.com

We accept tax-deductible donations!

In order to expand our art classes, we are in need of a utility sink.  We have estimates ranging between $800 – $2,000. Every donation will go solely to this project unless otherwise specified.   Please consider supporting your community gallery and allowing us to expand our offerings!

Artisan Gallery 218 is a sponsored project of Fractured Atlas, a non-profit arts and services organization.  Contributions are tax-deductible to the extent permitted by law and can be made in person or via our website:   http://www.artisangallery218.com/support-gallery/

Thank you for your support and continued patronage!!  Stop in to see us!  [Mary Louise, Annie and Victoria]  We are regularly open Tuesday through Saturday and often on Mondays as well.