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‘It gives people an outlet:’ West Allis pottery studio focuses on relationship with community

WEST ALLIS -- There's more than meets the eye at Cream City Clay, a pottery studio in West Allis, and the owners feel that giving back is what their art is about.

Cream City Clay

"We take in beginners. We take in people with a little bit of experience, and we take people in that have lots of experience," said Colleen Volland with Cream City Clay.

"Don't be afraid of making mistakes in general. I think art is about making mistakes and then making happy mistakes," said Kat Terwelp, artist.

Volland said what sets them apart from other "do-it-yourself" studios is that they, "hope to continue to do more. I would love to reach out into the community and I'd love to expand more into offering scholarships."

Since the business opened, the owner has taken a community-centered approach -- giving tens of thousands of dollars to those in need -- through donated pieces of work, classes and use of studio space.

"We have a group of potters that come in. Last year, we made 400 bowls that were donated, and the money went to the Hunger Task Force and various food pantries," Volland said.

If spinning clay on a wheel isn't your thing -- that's OK! Cream City Clay also offers sculpting, where you can create whatever you want.

"It gives people a sort of outlet. It's relaxing to do and it's a way to actually make something with your hands," said Terwelp.

Whether it's donating money and resources to the community or just giving an artist peace of mind -- creating pottery is an experience worth trying.