Meet Ashley; the Lady of the South.

Founder, CEO & Lead Potter of Dirty South, this blog features her writings on living as a modern-day southerner,
an inside perspective of the business, and what it is really like to own & operate a small shop. Grab a glass of sweet tea & enjoy!


How We Are Doing Amid the COVID 19 Pandemic

How We Are Doing Amid the COVID 19 Pandemic

"We make most of our income from our shop in Winchester, which is the easiest and most productive way for us to sell our work. A good portion of our income comes from markets and events, another good portion from wholesale and corporate gifts, and a little slice from online sales. So how has COVID 19 effected our business? It has pretty much eliminated 90% of our revenue streams."

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Why We Had to Say Goodbye to Classes in Clay

Why We Had to Say Goodbye to Classes in Clay

We purchased our building on North Main Street back in the summer of 2014. When we first became owners our intentions were clear; we would live upstairs, have a production-style classroom area downstairs, and a small store upfront. We would teach 2-4 six week classes at any given time, with a once-a-month single class for those who were just looking to see what it was all about before committing to a longer course. This was going to bring hands-on opportunities in the arts to the folks in our community, and allow them to see what it takes to make art. 
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Mug Makin' - Behind The Scenes

Mug Makin' - Behind The Scenes

It’s hard to explain the amount of work that it takes to create a single mug. Most people simply do not have a context for the process of pottery, because we usually don't have the exposure to it that we do with other art mediums. Most people can tell you the basic steps of painting; paintbrush + paint + canvas = a painting.
 
But what about ceramics?
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6 Ways to Support a Small Business

6 Ways to Support a Small Business

Community is the life-blood of small businesses. Whether that is the neighborhood outside their door, a community of like-minded people in the area, or a community formed solely online – what you do as a customer or follower of these brands makes a big difference.
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Pivoting; Having Goals with Soul

Pivoting; Having Goals with Soul

I am a creature of habit. I like the known, the familiar, the predictable. I prefer to sit in the same chair in my living room every night. I have worn my makeup in the same way for the majority of my adult life. I create routines.

I also get bored easily. I don’t like getting stuck in too many routines. The 9-5pm work life wore me down so much that I created my own business to escape it. I like new adventures. I like to rearrange rooms. I prefer to have some structure, but to work loosely within the guidelines I set for myself.
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5 Quick Tips for Buying the Perfect Handmade Pottery for You

5 Quick Tips for Buying the Perfect Handmade Pottery for You

A few years ago, when we first started on the festival circuit, I wrote a blog on tips on buying quality pottery at fairs. Now as I reread it, I can see that it was filled with advice that came from an art student who was trying to sound like an artist. I was (unknowingly) focused on defensively explaining pottery instead of writing out solid advice to the shopper.

But today, I have given myself the chance to fix it.
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8 Innovative Ways to Repurpose Your Pots

8 Innovative Ways to Repurpose Your Pots

If you have ever been to our studio/store you may have noticed that I have a thing for repurposing old and broken things. A scrap piece of wood can become a display, old wine racks into mug racks. Thanks to Pinterest and HGTV, this trend of rethinking old items has exploded in the last few years – much to my delight! I love saving items that are destined for landfills and giving them new life. Seriously, I love it.
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Beer Cheese Me, Please

Beer Cheese Me, Please

Beer Cheese. If you’re not from Kentucky, you may or may not have heard of it before. But unless you’ve traveled to the Bluegrass State I can tell you one thing; you ain’t had real beer cheese.
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FAQ: Why Downtown?

FAQ: Why Downtown?

“So…. Why did you all decide to open here?”

That, my friends, is the top question that we are asked all the time. (#2 is if we know when the cobbler next door will be in.) Although I would like to say that it was a carefully calculated investment that we planned for several months, that is not our truth. Our decision to invest our lives into Downtown Winchester was made from a simple recipe of 1 part opportunity, 1 part good timing, and 2 parts gut feeling.

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Treat Yo' Self - February 14th Style

Treat Yo' Self - February 14th Style

As the winter blows on through the Bluegrass, a certain red and pink styled holiday seems to be approaching very quickly. Before I continue, I must make a confession: I actually dislike Valentine’s Day very much. Even as a teenager when I bought into most of what society was telling me to do, I have always rejected the idea of Valentine’s Day. Why do we need one day a year to celebrate love? Shouldn’t we do that every day? And how on Earth does buying people chalky candy hearts show them your affection?
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Evolution Over Resolution

Evolution Over Resolution

A new year has been given to us all once again, and I for one am very grateful to see it come. The holidays are always our busiest time of the year, which is both exciting and overwhelming as a business owner like myself who makes their own products. By the time that our annual post-Christmas studio shutdown arrives, my brain feels zapped, my body aches, my socializing fuel tank is empty and I am pretty much the definition of worthless.
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Empty Bowls, Full Hearts

Empty Bowls, Full Hearts

The holiday season is also the giving season; and I’m not just talking about gift-giving. Although we see charitable causes throughout the year, the weeks leading up to Christmas seem to be filled with good deeds, festive cheer, and people going out of their way to help others. Above everything else, this is why I love the holiday season.
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