When Misty Ward decided to move back to her hometown of Dadeville after 10 years raising her children in Auburn, she was ready to re-enter the workforce. She had experience running a business in the town, as she had owned a barbershop in Dadeville years ago. This time, she wanted to do something different, so she asked her 22-year-old daughter for ideas.

Her daughter gave her some of the advice she had learned from her mother, “Do what you love.” 

Ward had always loved to hand build pottery. She took her daughters advice but wanted to start a business that would offer a new experience to the residents of her hometown. One Oak One-of-a-Kind Pottery Garage is a business ready to offer a fun, creative new hobby to the people of the area. 

One Oak offers a variety of ways to test your creativity. Group classes are offered once each week and last for four weeks. Students spend one day each week learning the four-step process of hand building pottery. The $150 fee includes 25 pounds of clay, a tool kit, glazes, Bisque firing and glaze firing to provide each student with their own handmade pottery creations at the end of the course.

“I limit the classes to six people, so I have plenty of time to work one-on-one with each student,” explained Ward.

In addition, students have access to the shop 24/7 to work on their art. Not everyone wants to take on a four-week course, so the shop also offers pieces that are already created and ready to be glazed by participants. These mugs, bowls, serving pieces and ornaments range in price from $10 to $75 and usually could be completed in a couple of hours. The shop can also be reserved for private parties, and the party has use of all the tools and equipment needed to finish their pieces. It takes about two weeks to complete the glazing and firing process and the creations can be picked up after the two-week curing time is complete. 

The shop opened in April and is enjoying early success. Ward will participate in Dadeville’s Christmas open house on Nov. 6. She will offer refreshments and sell premade ornaments that are ready to glaze. This will provide visitors to her shop an opportunity to see what the process is like. This introduction also offers an opportunity to consider taking the next step of enrolling in a class. 

The little pottery garage is in downtown Dadeville, directly behind Bob’s Fine Foods. Ward’s father was “Bob,” and the landmark is now leased to new owners. The family still owns the property, so it offered the perfect spot for the new business.

Now that her children are grown and live in other cities, Ward is starting a new business after years of being somewhat retired.

“I always knew when I left that I would someday find my way back home, and I know that, this time, I am here to stay,” she said.

One Oak Pottery is located at 113 E. Lafayette St., Dadeville. Call Ward at 256-749-4043.