natural dyes, Annual 2021 & soap

It has been a while since we have written a newsletter. We definitely have been extremely busy.

paper studio

Recently I invited Barb Korbel (BK) to the studio to work with me to create natural dyes from plants of my area for handmade paper. We had a blast BK being experienced in natural dyes to cloth for her own weaving projects and myself handling the paper end of things.

We gathered Queen Anne’s Lace, Sumac leaves, Osage orange heartwood and Hollyhock blossoms. Through we came up with some great results that can be expanded to create production runs of paper using natural dyes that can be fairly lightfast. We still have some more planned research so we will keep you posted.

ceramic studio

Annual 2021 Fall Sale – November 5 -7 is being planned, in person as well as online. We will have plenty of new garlic pots (nicknamed the stinky) and garlic to fill them. We are paying close attention to the CDC and their recommendations. This will be a masked event with social distancing. It will be mainly outdoors under our 1-year old solar panel array.

We are off the grid it has finally happened…….installation was complete early June 2020 by Photon Electric. It is truly magical. We are planning a solar panel Q & A and farm tours during the Annual 2021.

farm happenings

It’s July and we make soap the last week of April for our entire year and we make extra to sell in our shop and other places like Colophon Book Arts. In July I offer a wholesale price to anybody if they buy 20 bars. If you are interested go to our soap page. 20 bars will most likely last 10 months for a family of 3-4.

Turkey Foot farm’s CSA is going strong Ry is also selling fresh veggies out of our gallery along with chicken and pork. This year we are selling turkeys if you are interested in reserving one contact Ry Hook.

23rd Annual Fall Sale Online, Solar Power, and “the stinky”

This has been a year of upping our food stores in a different way. We usually can food and we can everything fruit, veggie, and meat. Jon has designed new fermentation jars that function well and our completely gorgeous. We are fermenting more than we ever had. We have been fermenting napa cabbage and bok choi from Ry’s abundance of greens this fall – Turkeyfootfarm. Jon has decided that each jar carries unique characteristics from the studio so he decided to number each one making it special. These jars are high fired stoneware and will last for many generations.

The fermentation jars are part of the online fall sale and they are quickly disappearing. Jon has also designed a new garlic storage jar. The lid on some have a little pig and have been nicknamed “the stinky”. The large carved holes in the side walls of the jar let the garlic breathe. They hold about a pound of garlic and look great on the kitchen counter.

Visit our page ANNUAL 2020 see the jars and many other of the works for sale. This is our first time having an online fall sale. We will miss seeing you in person but hope to chat soon. We will be doing a couple of demonstration videos on Instagram (@hookpotterypaper), like we would do if you were here. If you do want to stop out from now until December 19th bring your mask. We have shop hours from 10 – 5 CST, Thursday – Sunday. We do limit the number of people in the shop. You can also call and set up an appointment.

Andrea has completed a sample book of 19 stock paste papers. Some of you might have seen them already through Colophon Book Arts. You can get them here or there. All the pastes are on handmade paper  – cotton, denim and abaca. See the ANNUAL 2020 page to see all 19 patterns and colors.

We are now completely on Solar power. We had the panels installed this summer and have been working out the kinks. We are very excited that we are using solar as our power source to run the studios, home and the farming operation. It is quite magical and highly recommend others to take the leap. Even on a grey day we pull in more energy then we use.

Here is your virtual visit to Hook Pottery Paper and Turkeyfoot Farm.

22nd Annual Fall Open House, Beer Tasting, and Thanksgiving Turkeys

Our 22nd Annual Fall Open HouseNovember 7 – 10, 10am – 7pm CST.
We will have demonstrations in the studios; tours of the new winter greenhouse and garlic seed plots(4000 cloves in the ground) the new mushroom grow chamber and an increase to the goat clan.

Our son Ry, Turkeyfoot Farm, which is located on site, has asked me to pass on a pastured raised meat pricelist – some preorder – for example our limited supply of Thanksgiving turkeys (attached at the end). He will have ground sheep, goat and pork at the fall open house.





At the open house you can talk garlic and mushrooms with Lu, he has new varieties he is exploring and will have mushrooms available. He loves to show the new grow chamber. We will also be firing up the wood fire pizza oven and be making fresh pizzas.

Jon has new wood fired ware and is very excited about the bowls that are coming out of the kilns this fall – definitely ready for the fall soups. He also has many of his olde world style beer mugs fired with plant ash glazes from the local area. The bowls here have a thistle ash glaze.

On site beer tasting on Saturday with ales brewed by Michael Henderberg brew master of Hinterland Farm and Kitchen. He will be brewing beer on site and explain the process of all grain brewing.
Ry Hook is starting out as a young brewer and will have two kinds of Porter to taste.

Andrea will have several handmade papers available made from local fibers such as daylily, wheat straw and hay and newly designed paste papers as well as new drawings and prints exhibited in the shop gallery. Andrea’s new book “In the Field”, which describes the techniques and processes she uses to create natural and locally sourced paper fibers will be available and she will sign your very own copy.


It is a great weekend of gathering, socializing, experiencing a small farm and studios endeavor toward a healthy eco system – a celebration of the season past and the future.




If interested contact: Ry Hook ,, 219-362-9478
Our turkeys are a heritage breed weighing 15 – 20. They are fed organic and non-GMO grain supplementing their pasture grazing.Turkeys are $5.00 a pound and are in limited supply please call soon to reserve one. We will be taking a $50.00 deposit to reserve your bird. Final payment on pick-up (November 9 -10) Birds will be frozen.

Pigs have been pastured/forest raised with grain supplement that is Non-GMO and soy free. USDA processed – cured meats are nitrate free
whole pigs
are $7.00 lb. and yields 136 lbs. ½ pig $7.00 lb. yields about 68 lbs.
half pig will yield the following cuts – ham, spareribs, bacon, shoulder butt, loin roast and chops, fresh roast, sausage   pick-up November 7th – 9th

¼ pig is available on request your cuts will vary from the list above. We recommend finding a friend/neighbor/relative to pig share.
FYI 35 lbs of meat require 1 cubic foot of freezer space which is about the size of a milk crate.

Chicken Broilers
Frozen and ready birds are 4 – 6 pounds at $4.00 lb. Pastured raised on rotational grazing with soy free whole grains organically grown.




Inhaling the Universe

Inhaling the Universe









in the studios
Our opening reception for the exhibition “ Inhaling the Universe” at the Krasl Art Center in St. Joe, Michigan is August 9th. We hope to see you there early Friday evening check website for details. Remember it is Eastern Standard Time.

The exhibition is one of our most exciting shows mounted. The new work is large, expansive, intimate and demanding.

“Seeing nature through

an experience of

collecting and observing

gives voice to the

moment. We breathe

deeply and find the earth

looking back at us.

There is more than

process and observation

– the sight line for

meaning looks out to all parts of life on earth reducing everything to an essence”











new book on papermaking with natural fibers

My book “In the Field” a complete guide about making paper from any plant fiber that is near you is available for purchase online through Colophon Book Arts  or if you would like to send a check please see my website page. I am scheduled for a book signing and a class in Green Lake, Wisconsin this fall at the event sponsored by Arnold Grummer’s Paperfest. – Oct 4-5. I will also have my books for purchase at the Guild of Book Worker’s Standards of Excellence in Philadelphia Oct 24 – 26 and will be happy to sign a copy for you.

If you are going to New York City

I highly recommend making an appointment with the Watson Library at The Metropolitan Museum of Art to see the Paper Legacy Collection. I am so exciting to be a part of this collection and quite humbled. The decorative papers in this collection are mind blowing and quite incredible how they were conceived.

eggs are on!

Spring has been jumping here with chickens laying tons of eggs, seedlings sprouting, baby chicks growing fast, first broilers will be ready May 20th says Ry Hook of Turkeyfoot Farm, which is onsite, basically surrounding our studios. Ry has eggs for sale now  – for greens and the like you can follow his instagram @rymaehook  or call us. We sell eggs and honey currently out of the studio gallery shop.

Jon is off to NCECA , National Council on Education in Ceramic Arts, at the end of March to give a short presentation on woodfired kiln design and the assisted used fryer oil burner system he has been using. This conference is in Minneapolis this year, many ceramic art educators in one place.


I (Andrea) have dropped decorative papers off at the Watson Library for the Paper Legacy collection. You can find information about the collection with this link. Better yet go see it – the marbled and paste papers are mind blowing – it was certainly an education and inspirational.

In the Field intensive workshop at the end of June still has spaces following this link for more info. My book with the same title which I am self publishing will be out May 15th and you will be able to order it through our website. I will have it with me at PBI too. It will instruct how to gather, select, and process natural fibers in your area thoroughly!

Jon and I have a collaborative show opening August 9th at the Krasl Art Center in St Joe, MI.


Hope to see you this spring/summer in your travels or ours.

Beer Man and ducks in a row

My grandfather used the term “I gotta get my ducks in a row” during my youth often. It has grown with our family as well. Seeing the spring ducklings mature but keeping to that pattern without the mother is seeing that some routine is part of it all and very humorous to watch as they take turns leading or stop to graze and break formation.

Our 21st Annual Fall Open House – November 8 – 11, 10 – 5 CST. We will have daily demonstrations, tours of the greenhouses, visit our new sheep and new additions to the goat herd. You can talk garlic and mushrooms with Lu and chat it up with Ry about pastured raised meats he will have for sale.

Special demonstrator Michael Henderberg a longtime brewer and close friend who will be making all grain batches of beer all day Saturday. Come by get a new Jon Hook beer mug and have a taste.

paper studio

Andrea has been working with several artists this fall in the studio catch the all of it on instagram @ hook_pottery_paper. New paper arts works like this one. A four panel piece of Warren Woods as sun drops and sets the woods on fire. Using millet straw as the base sheet. Many new paper designs for you to look over in the studio. Hot fall news Andrea’s paper designs have been collected by the Metropolitan Museum in New York City for their permanent collection she will be shipping off papers soon – the very same designs will be available at the Annual Fall Open House.

ceramic studio

Jon has just lit the 2nd firing. Below a glimpse of the very top shelf before the door bricks were set. The triangle cones in the front are temperature gauges. Jon will be able to peek through a brick hole to watch the temperature rise throughout the firing. When the first set of cones are down he will engage the used fryer oil system he has developed to finish off the firing. He has another firing planned after this and he will have a plethora of lovely work such as these tea or sake cups. Come see us this fall!



Goth Punk Goat and Pulp Workshops

ceramic and paper studio

Annual Fall Open House and Exhibition November 8 – 11

fall paper making workshops are now listed on the website


Jon has been working on new mugs that resemble the old brew house mugs of a long ago trip to Germany. The ash glazes on these two beauties are from the thistle plant collected at a local farm. The mugs are twenty ounce and fit well in the hand. He is also making some jugs for olive oil, vinegar, or your favorite libation. These jugs are utilizing the local plants for the ash glaze as well. There will be several large bowls, pitchers, serving plates, tea pots, cups, and storage jars available for the Fall Open House dates.


Andrea is continually inspired by the rings and cut marks left on a log – cotton cast printed log from July, currently working on a 4 foot diameter log. 


The phragmites cotton pulp drawing is on a base sheet made from phragmites. Several new works including a large turkey print will be on exhibition at the Fall Open House. She has started a production run of a few new papers that will be at Standards and the Friends of Dard Hunter this fall check them out if you are going!

on the farm
Our newest stud (above) Black Jack. All black with a natural white tuft on top of his head.

Ry and Lu have a website for their farming adventures it is a little sparse but will start filling when things are available.

Ry for the last 2 years has expanded the animal and farm production projects which have turned into a emerging business. He sells eggs, broilers, and a variety of greens and vegetables to the local market, a couple restaurants in the area, and out of our gallery. These seedlings will be out in beds for fall production. Lu continues to work on mushrooms and garlic which he has been selling to the local market.

Ry continues to produce his own organically grown grain (summer wheat harvest above) for his egg layers and meat birds which any farmer will tell you is no small feat as well as organically grown hay for the growing goat herd, sheep, and pigs. For the Fall Open House he will have broilers, goat burger, pork, possibly lamb and a variety of harvested goodies available.

New egg layers one week old – they will be laying next spring.




baby lamb & black walnut paper dying

on the farm
We had a surprise four weeks ago. This unexpected early birth gave us an idea of what’s to come. Ry has become a shepherd. He has started a herd of Katadhins with a neighbor and we will be lambing in March.

Winter break was fabulous – we hibernate into our studios – making, reading, writing and planning, we drop out of the social scene for a while and give our heart, mind and body some dedicated alone time and to build a WOODSHOP – to insulate we used a new product that is made from recycled denim fibers – it is environmentally friendly and safe!
A few things indicate winter break is over – maple trees are being tapped,



onion seedlings have emerged, and next year’s firewood is being split and stacked and a few other things

paper studio
Andrea taught an Advanced Paper Making course at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago during the January Interim a 3 week intensive course, not leaving much play time in the studio but work still was being made. Andrea has been working on a new series of pulp drawings looking at macro and micro views of the environment and the female power within.
Black Walnuts were collected in the fall, husked, dried and stored for winter dying. The husks are boiled in water, the rich brown dye is strained and the dying commences. 

Andrea is teaching workshops in our studios this spring and summer. One of the workshops is a week long adventure,
“In the field: A natural fiber professional paper making workshop, June 18 – 22”.
This workshop is designed to experience and understand all aspects of natural fiber paper making. We will be examining sources of materials, which plants to choose, why and complete identification. We will be looking at the ideas of growing, wildcrafting, and other collection methods, as well as storage of dry fiber. We will be using multi cooking solutions……..see website for details for all spring and summer workshops/experiences. Teachers can earn continuing education units at Hook Pottery Paper.



ceramic studio
Jon has been working on new plate moulds using an impression of a Queen Anne’s Lace flower head. Queen Anne’s Lace is a plant that only flowers once in it’s second year – a biannual. Selection can take a couple years.
He selects a sturdy and large flower and makes an impression in clay to start the mould. He is making a 2 part plaster mould and utilizing a homemade clay press, a design he found in a tile making book, “Handmade Tiles”, by Frank Giorgini. This spring Jon will be making a Queen Anne’s Lace ash glaze from plants he collected last fall.

Jon will be opening his studio for small intimate workshops – wheel throwing and hand building, new and traditional ash glazes and sustainable firing methods will be used.
see website for details.




20th Fall Open House

It has been a busy and plentiful summer thru fall. In the above photo Ry is cleaning and final greasing of the combine prior to winter storage – he has produced naturally grown oats, barley, and rye as duck and poultry feed. All those fields are growing a healthy cover crop which will pull carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere at the rate of 2 tonnes per acre and into the ground where the plants will use it – greatly reducing carbon emissions. Ground left bare will actually release carbon back into the atmosphere. A resourceful farmer will want to keep that carbon in the soil and try to pull even more from the air for the plants to use next year – keeping the soil healthy and alive.

Please join us for our
20th fall  open house,
November 9 – 12 from 10 – 7 CST.

We will be giving short talks about cover cropping gardens/small areas, the new green house project, visit the garlic patch with Lu, and Ry will be sharing what he has been learning about Oak wilt, a serious fungus that is killing oak trees. Lu will be sharing his process of mushroom tissue culturing. Ry will be giving animal tours and chat about goat health and care– each day he will be featuring one of our goats and will be trimming hooves and demonstrate general grooming.
A schedule of events is located on the fall open house page.

farm goods available during this event
eggs, honey, micro-greens, garlic, body balm, soap, candles, and our NEW HOT HOT SAUCE from 9 different peppers!

paper studio
The paper studio has been a blur of activity with visiting artists through summer and fall. Lea Basille-Lazarus, Chicago artist, came for a few days and made amazing work.

Jon and I had a large exhibition at the Brauer Museum of Art which ended in August those works will be exhibited at the fall open house.



I have been working on new log prints that will be on exhibit at the fall open house.

I wrote a blog spot for Surface Design Journal on Paper Textiles check it out. A great magazine and blog!

I would like to announce an exciting workshop for next summer happening in my studio. In the field: A natural fiber papermaking workshop from June 18 – 22. Please go to the workshop page to find out more details.

ceramic studio
Jon has been diligently working on a new series of plant ash glazes that will be debuted in November at our fall open house. He has refined his used fryer oil system which assists with the woodfire and the results have been amazing. All will be revealed during the fall open house.