Business feature: Hobby leads to business

Linda Nicholas has been making ceramics and jewelry for more than 20 years, but Fawn’s Ceramics and Jewelry officially became a business in 2007. Nicholas got into making ceramics as a child.

“This lady came over one morning to have coffee with my mother,” Nicholas said. “Of course, I was six years old and always in trouble, and she took me under her wing. I’ve always been interested in art and love to create things.”

Nicholas loved learning how to create things so much that the visits became weekly.

She now paints ceramics, makes jewelry, takes special orders and teaches classes on how to do these things.

Amanda Bonilla is Nicholas’ business partner and helps to make a lot of the items. Bonilla was originally a student before working her way up.

Nicholas said she doesn’t do any glazing or plate or cups because it requires a second firing and the City of Portales won’t let her do it.

“All the techniques I know, the back brush blending and the fly brushing, is what I teach my students,” Nicholas said.

Nichols’ students are sometimes adults, but mostly children. Her students buy unglazed ceramics from Nicholas, and she supplies all the paints, brushes, aprons and anything else a student might need.

She starts her students off by teaching them one technique at a time with only two colors.

“It’s kind of like learning how to color within the lines,” Nicholas said.

Projects include lamps, ashtrays, wind chimes and figurines. She does wood burning that she can mount onto a plaque with a light to show it off.

“We put it all together, set up and sell it,” Nicholas said. “I teach all of the classes. I’m flexible for the student. Each class is two to 3 1/2 hours long.”

Classes can be individual or groups classes, and Bonilla also teaches.