After Duluth, I drove up the North Shore of Lake Superior. Sooo pretty, and pretty awesome! The birch leaves were at their height, all ablaze in glowing yellow. I was reminded of the shores of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia.
On the drive up, I stopped at the Knife River. My first stop was an older brick building with a "rag rugs" sign on the side of it. I am so glad I stopped! It was DAC, a workshop for disabled adults. Inside, they made beautiful rag rugs and handmade paper.
Further down the street and to the north was Playing with Yarn knit shop -- so much to see there. She had some older patterns I had eyed online and lots of beautiful Nordic yarn and miscellany. Then, just a ways further east was the beautiful silversmith shop of Brad E. Nelson's. The lady at the yarn shop called up to make sure he was open. I'm so glad that Monday was a holiday, because he was!
I got to meet his mom, Winnie, and he gave me a tour of his silversmith work area. Amazing! He is so talented in multiple media -- silver, copper, wood, stone carving. He even has several pieces in which he repurposed old shoe soles in a beautiful and meaningful way.
I spent quite awhile there looking at all the creative, amazing work. Then, I toodled further up and further in. My goal? Grand Marais.
Grand Marais is a gorgeous lake town that just this year was voted "Coolest Small Town" in America this year! I went because it is the home of the North House Folk School. Based on the Danish craft school model, North House is open year round. It models multiple artistic expressions common in northern climates: boat building, basket weaving, spinning and fiber arts, wooden model carving, iron work. I can't even list them all.
Next February, I am going to be their featured teacher in their Fiber long weekend. I am so excited to be included in their lineup, and I can't wait to travel north again!