Arts & Culture

Area arts society offers holiday boutique and exhibit -- just in time for the shopping season

Scenes from the 2014 Holiday Boutique at SOBA in Bluffton.
Scenes from the 2014 Holiday Boutique at SOBA in Bluffton. Submitted photo

For those looking to add a little art to their holiday shopping lists, an area arts group is offering two holiday-oriented events this month with items that may delight even the hardest-to-shop-for people in your life.

The Society of Bluffton Artists will kick off "'Tis the Season" on Monday at the society's gallery at Church and Calhoun streets in Old Town Bluffton.

The exhibit will feature the work of many of the society's more than 110 members including photographs and paintings and a few three-dimensional works.

In addition, the society's annual "Holiday Boutique" -- next door to the gallery -- is also open.

The boutique features unique pieces, handmade items, crafts and other works by society artists.

Both events, society members said, are a fun and casual way for members to showcase and sell their work. Each event is slightly different from the other.

"People who don't normally show through the year or in the gallery have items here," said member Gayle Miller who was coordinating items for the "'Tis the Season" exhibit at the society's boutique space recently.

Miller along with members Joan Moreau McKeever and Julie Yeager, who were greeting visitors as they entered the boutique, paused to talk about the events this week.

The authenticity of having a homemade item or a "piece of the Lowcountry" continues to attract visitors and residents alike to both the society's gallery and Old Town in general, the women said.

"People want something unique and we have it," Yeager said.

A Christmas tree made entirely out of driftwood was a recent hot item and has already been snapped up.

Society members have also stocked the boutique with small-scale items -- such as small paintings and handmade scarves and clutches -- with an eye toward those visitors traveling great distances.

"Small travels well," Miller said.

In contrast, the "'Tis the Season" exhibit, which takes the place of the society's monthly featured artist, is an exhibit of art which captures the holiday spirit.

"And we left it open to the artist to choose how they wanted to interpret (that theme)," Miller said.

Being involved with the society, which offers a variety of classes throughout the year, has been rewarding, the members said.

"We're all so different," said Yeager, who paints primarily in abstract while McKeever paints very detailed works.

"You see what people are doing and how they're doing other things," said Miller, who paints in watercolor and is also a seamstress,

"It's been a really nice experience," McKeever agreed. "And we have a lot of fun."

If You Go

The Society of Bluffton Artists' latest exhibit "'Tis the Season" opens Monday and runs through Jan. 2 at the society's gallery, at 6 Church St., in Old Town Bluffton.

The Holiday Boutique, inside the Center for Creative Arts next door, is open now and will run through Dec. 30.

Both the gallery and the center are open from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 11:30 a.m.-3 p.m. Sunday.

For more information call 843-757-6586 or visit

Follow reporter Mindy Lucas on Twitter at

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