A beloved La Grande gem of a shop for over two decades, the roots of The Potter’s House Gallery date back to 1993 when Bob and Judy Jensen opened a summer gallery in Joseph (Jensen Artforms), which they ran for 10 years. Tired of schlepping their pottery, paintings, and ceramics to sell at outdoor art events, they opened their own gallery, The Potter’s House Gallery. Since opening in 2000 in La Grande, the house on 6th Street has been Bob and Judy’s home and studio. Bob is a retired art teacher who is a potter and water colorist and Judy is the creative mind behind the selection of enchanting gifts.
Bob and Judy’s mission for The Potter’s House Gallery is to provide handmade and unique high-quality gifts for their customers, as well as a special piece of furniture or home décor upcycled from reclaimed furniture and other items.
The Potter’s House Gallery not only offers Bob’s one-of-kind Raku and Stoneware pottery and exquisite watercolors, but also features the work of other local Eastern Oregon artists. Thanks to Judy’s keen eye for the delightful, there are also extraordinary decorating, lifestyle, art, and hospitality gifts for the discerning customer.
Bob and Judy strive to treat their customers in a manner such that they will leave feeling better than when they entered.
Over the years, Bob and Judy Jensen have contributed so much to La Grande, not only through The Potter’s House Gallery, but also with their outreach to the community and support of other Northeastern Oregon artists.
In 2019, Rosewood Cottage, a beloved La Grande establishment since 1997, moved down Adams Avenue four blocks into Pat’s Alley. Throughout the years, Rosewood Cottage has been a family business, with owner Cozy Barker working alongside her daughter Bethany and her granddaughter Paige, assisted by employees who have become life-long friends. Cozy said that the move came about because she wanted to be downtown where there was more foot traffic and also Pat’s Alley was more accessible to her customers in walkers and wheelchairs.
Rosewood Cottage offers a wide variety of kitchenware, gifts, and home décor products, including the most complete Fiesta dinnerware section in the area in all styles and colors. Also on offer are the popular Yankee and Swan Creek candles, along with bath and body products by Naked Bee, Camille Beckman and Bend Soap Company. They also have a selection of Chala and Bungalow handbags and accessories, as well as Demdaco home décor products, including Willow Tree angels, assorted kitchen, western, and wildlife décor items, along with Warmies and Jim Shore collectible décor. However, most beloved by people of the region are Rosewood Cottage’s seasonal promotions and the delicious fudge.
Rosewood Cottage has always been about family and friends and that continues to be Cozy’s mission as the charming boutique takes its place among the Pat’s Alley family of businesses. Her goals revolve around offering the most interesting and delightful products and maintaining the feeling of family for her employees and customers. With those ideals firmly in place, Rosewood Cottage will continue to be a destination for discerning shoppers throughout the region.
In 2021, Tara Sager was the winner of a competition hosted by LGMSD, the City of La Grande Urban Renewal Agency, and NEOEDD. For the competition, participants created a business plan for a store that would be able to move into a physical location. Part of the winning prize was funding to launch the business and provide technical assistance. Thus, in July of 2021, Rebel Woolworks opened in its current location at 1113 Adams Avenue in La Grande.
Eleven years ago, Tara Sager was living on a remote island in Alaska and, because she did not have access to yarn, she taught herself how to spin and dye yarn. She fell in love with the creative process and started an Etsy shop, which was open for about a year. Over the ensuing years, she has moved to the Mainland, grew a family, took up a previous career, and did the RV-ing life. However, she missed the creativity and community of dyeing yarn.
In February of 2020, Tara opened up Rebel Woolworks while exploring in the RV. She and her family were headed to Pendleton when they passed through La Grande and fell in love. The business grew to a point where she and her family moved into a home that could accommodate both her family and the expanding business. However, Rebel Woolworks soon outgrew her home studio space as well. That is when she entered the La Grande Business Plan Competition in 2021 and Rebel Woolworks had a brick and mortar home!
Over the ensuing years, indie-dyed yarn or independently-made yarn has become extremely trendy. Not only does the Rebel Woolworks store offer sublime hand-dyed yarn and fiber, a myriad of gifts, including crafted snacks, tea and beverages, chocolates and sweets, and cards and stationary are on offer. Rebel Woolworks also has an expansive internet presence, where Tara sells her wares nationally and internationally through a well-curated website.
Eventually, Tara hopes to branch out even more with an addition offering food and liquid refreshment. With Tara’s drive, creativity, and determination, Rebel Woolworks will become a destination for artistic souls around the region and contribute greatly to the growth and development of La Grande.