About Carolyn Schena

Studio 12 is a working studio and gallery owned and operated by husband and wife artists Gary and Carolyn Schena. The Schenas' art work includes pottery, glass fusion and mixed media. Located in Avon, North Carolina on the Outer Banks of North Carolina, studio 12 welcomes all ages to paint pottery, make mosaics or try glass fusion. The Studio 12 gallery is filled with hand Crafted American art with a focus on North Carolina Artists.

Jewelry for a Good Cause!

Creating Custom art work such as jewlery is one of the many fun things that we get to do at Studio 12.  We recently had the opportunity to make 50 pendants for local chapter of GO FAR, a comprehensive fitness program initiated to help combat childhood obesity.

GO FAR Development Director Samantha Brown, was familiar with my work and in fact owns one of my silver and clay pieces of jewelry. ” I love my tree pendant” she told me, and wondered if I could make a similar piece of jewelry for the GO FAR coaches, and so the design process began.

I love creating custom pieces of jewlery and I thought it would be especially rewarding to design and make a pieces for an organization that is doing so much for young people. To begin the process Samantha and I put our heads together to talk abut the design and the budget that she had to work with.  We decided on a 1″ square pendant that would have a sterling plated bail.   I decided to work with earthenware clay as a base and fine silver as accents in order to achieve the look we wanted and stay within GO FAR’s budget.

The pendants would be given to all 50 coaches to thank them for their dedication and hard work.

To begin I worked with a lump of clay and began molding it into the shape of the Go FAR logo.  After I got the look I wanted I then made several more pieces all with the same shape and design.  Then working with plaster I created a mold.  This allowed me to be able to create the 50 pendants needed and have them be fairly uniform as well as meet the timeline of having them done in one month.

Once all the pieces were made in clay they were dried and then cleaned to get rid of any rough edges and then signed. The next step was bisque firing, this means putting the clay in a kiln and firing until the clay hardens.

After all the pieces were bisqued it was time to apply the colored glaze.  The GO FAR logo is green and blue so we chose to work withthose colors and each pieces was hand painted with the two hues, applying 2 coats to each piece.  Then the pendants went back in the kiln for their glaze firing.  When they emerged about 20 hours later they were shiny and ready for the silver application, which is again applied by hand and then put into the kiln and fired for one last time.

The last steps involve scratch brushing the silver to make it smooth and shiny and then applying the silver plated bail which is attached with a hardy glue.  After the glue sets the pieces are cleaned one more time and given a final inspection while being boxed and ready to give!

To see more of Carolyn’s Silver and Clay jewelry check out the Studio 12 website where you will also fine work in clay and glass fusion.  Contact Carolyn if you would like a piece of custom jewlery for your organization.

GO FAR Is a non profit organization designed for children with all abilities to promote healthy eating habits and good character as well as a curriculum that teaches children and how to set goals, reach goals and successfully and safely complete a 5K run or walk/run. The GO FAR program started in 2003, by Robin Lindsay, Physician Assistant  in one NC school with 16 children and now has grown to reach over 4000 children annually.


$10 by Dec.10th – Hand Crafted for the Holidays!

Studio 12 says make it hand crafted for this holiday season! Nothing gives from the heart more than a beautiful piece of art. To help you give hand crafted this holiday season Studio 12 is giving you a $10 gift certificate to use by December 10th! Shop our website and find a great selection of gifts for your holiday shopping list. Or if you have been in our gallery you can just give us a call and we will be happy to assist you over the phone.  We have lots of great gifts for under $25 and many wonderful North Carolina and regional artists to choose from. So make it hand crafted for ths holiday season! Happy shopping! Studio 12 will be open Friday/Monday 10 to 5 and Sat 9:30 to 12:30

Shopping on the OBX

The Studio 12 gallery is filled with an array of hand crafted items representing Outer Banks artists and beyond. To help you with your holiday shopping lists we have put together a list of great gifts for $25 and under found  in the Studio 12 gallery.  Some of these items are also available on our website but if you can’ t find them listed there you can always call us and we are happy to ship to you or the the recipient!

Hand Blown Glass Globes  – These beautiflly made blown glass globse will look great on the Christmas tree or hanging in a window to reflect the sunshine.  The globes come in bright blue and amber and will certianly be treasrued by ocean lovers! $25 each

Hand Painted Metal Picture Holders by Rebeccy Duffy. These colorful and whimsical sculptures are a bright addition to any desk and an easy way to display photos of family and friends! Rebecca’s designs include octopus, crab, mermaid, and a surfer girl and surfer boy. $15 to $29

Soaps and Lotions – made from the finest ingredients like shea butter and oatmeal as well as brightly colored glycerin soaps in such colors as peach, cobalt blue and purple that have fun shapes inside them such as dragonflies and lighhouses! hand crafted lotions and soaps will look great in nay bathroom and will certianly be appreciated by anyone ready to get rid of those winter dry hands!  Soaps are $8 with lotions ranging $5 to $15

Photography by Betty Horan

Photography Prints – beautiful landscape shots of the Outer Banks have been captured by two photogpahers that we have in the gallery Dan Waters, and Betty Horan. Choose from 8″ x 10″ prints for $22 or note cards for $5.  Cedar wood frames are availble to finish off the prints made by Studio 12 owner Gary Schena

Glass Fusion Jewlery– designed and created by Studio 12 co-owner Carolyn Schena. She makes earrings, pendants, bracelets and rings in such a vast selection of color and color combinations that no two pieces are ever alike, ensuring that you receive a unique piece of work every time.  With earrings priced at $22 each and pendants ranging $24 to $29 they are a great deal for original art work.

Hand Sewn Aprons – Made with loving detail each apron by Carol Powell seems to have its own story whether it is the vintage handkershief pockets or the reclaimed cloth. Her Aprons are classics that will certainly make the cook look good if not cook even better! Priced at  $18 to $22 each you can get one for a loved one and yourself!

Clay Christmas Ornaments – Gary and Carolyn, owners of Studio 12 were selected to design and ornament for the 2011 White House Christmas Tree Lightining Ceremony. There high relief designs reflect all that is cherished about coastal life, including sea turltles, lighthouses, seashells and more.

White House Ornament

Each ornament comes from one White House Ornamentof the Schena’s hand carved molds and is hand painted. Choose from several differant designs with lots of color combinations as well as the 2011 White House ornament in classic white. Chrismtas ornaments by the Schena’s range $16.00 to $25.00


Candles– what better way to send a little light into your loved ones life than with hand crafted candles.  Made on the Outer Banks, Corolla candle company specializes in their clear see through gel candles that have a whole world of beach treasures inside.

Gel Candles

Light one up and bring the beach alive! When not lit jsut put the jar top back on, which is also filled with shells and you have a great decoration for the room. At $18 to $25 dollars each they make great teacher, pet sitter and babysitter gifts!

Copper Wall Art – Made by a patented process developed by husband and wife team Kendall and D Crews, Water fired copper wall art adds such warmth to any wall.  The pieces are great for indoors or outdoors as the copper is sealed and or patined for added color.  There are many pieces to choose from inlcuding and entire sea turlte family form Papa to baby as well as sand dollars, fish and dragonflies.  Baby Seaturtles are $10 and Sand dollars $22

Fun and colorful bowls – can be filled with all kinds of things from ice cream and candy to paperclips or jewelry.  These flip flop and cupcake bowls are a colorful way to say thanks and will surely add a splash of color to anyones life!


Many of the items listed can be purchased via our website but for those that aren’t yet on our webiste just give us a call and we will be happy to serve you over the phone!  Happy Holiday Shopping from Studio 12!


OBX Watercolor Impressions

“Crab Shells and Barnacles” 8″ x 10″

New in the gallery, some lovely impressions of the Outer Banks captured in watercolor by artist Torey Wahlstrom.  When I came across Torey’s work I fell in love with the simple but compelling subject matter, that captures some of the most specials things we like about our Island home!

Torey says ” I came from a blood line of artists. One grandmother was a tough German who made abstract expressionist paintings and lived in Manhattan across from the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The other – a sweet Irish storyteller grandmother who lived by the sea – grew huge tomatoes in her garden and taught me how to quilt. My mother is a watercolorist and collector of birds nests.”

Torey says that she has always painted and made things since she was very small, but somehow managed not to follow an early dream of going to art school. Instead she says “I tried so many different jobs . . . . office work, window display, teaching yoga, marketing, graphic design.  But I always secretly continued to paint.  I decided I had too many piles of paintings stacking up. It was time to take them out of the closet.”

Torey’s creative process is sparked by excitement.” I’ll be freaking out I’m so enthralled about the patterns on a little shell or the color variations on a flower stem…..things that most people wouldn’t notice. Then I put the obsessive part of my brain to good use by focusing it on the painting.” Torey as hlived in India and has studied meditation for many years, which she believes helps her to concentrate deeply and quietly.

Nature is the center of Torey’s work and even in her spare time she volunteers caring for wild animals (bobcats are her favorites) so it has been a natural tension to keep her art work and the materials she uses as earth friendly as possible, and also donating 10% of the profits to wildlife and nature charities.

Studio 12 has a selection of Torey’s 8″ x 10″ water color prints by themselves or framed in cedar wood.  Studio 12 will be open Thanksgiving week 9:30am to 5:30pm!


Fun things for kids during a hurricane

Whether it is hurricane Sandy that is headed your way or just a cold rainy day in the forecast, either way it can be a drag on the kids and the adults all trapped indoors!

Here are just a few things that we came up with for our four year old while we are riding out the latest hurricane, Sandy that hit Hatteras Island Halloween weekend.  Feel free to add to the list with your comments below, considering we might be trapped indoors for a another day or two we would appreciate some more good ideals!

1 .Clean a closet or the attic – don’t fool yourself that it will actually get clean but know that in the process your kids will re-discover some new toys!

2. Tissue People – get a box of Kleenex and some rubber bands.  Put several Kleenex together and make a ball and the top secure with the rubber band.  Kids can use markers to create faces and voila, you have several characters ready for the Kleenex theatre!

3. Pillow Fight – set the ground rules first so no one gets hurt, maybe put up some couch cushions to make a ring and yoga mats on the floor for protection then just have some fun!

4. The All kitchen Utensil Band – Only if you are ready for some noise should you try this fun activity! Let your toddler experiment with various kitchen utensils and how they sound on metal, plastic and wood pots, bowls and pan. Then everyone can join in for a kitchen band.

5. Start making holiday cards – use parchment paper and trace your child’s hand then layer the parchment and you can cut out several hand prints at once.  The hand print cans me made into ghosts for Halloween or Santa clauses beard for Christmas!

6. Smell taste touch – Play a little experiment game with your kids to see what smells and tastes they can identify.  Blind fold and let them smell different foods and items they are familiar with or not so familiar with such as peanut butter, cinnamon, or coffee.

7. Science Experiments – Gather us some vinegar, baking soda, dish liquid, food color, water and several plastic container and experiment with what happens when you mix the various elements together.

8. Couch Cushion Fort – gather up every pillow you can find and all of your spare blankets and see what kind of fantastic fortress you can construct!

9.  Call up your cousins – Have a hard time getting your toddlers to talk on the phone? Well after a day of being cooped up in the house you might be surprised how much they can chatter away.  Give two four year olds the phone and you might just find you have enough time to bake a dozen cookies or write an article about what to do on a rainy day!

10. Go to the Zoo – set up all of the kids stuffed animals in one room then pretend that you and the either baby dolls or other stuffed animal friends are going to take a trip to the zoo. Make sure the dolls are dressed properly for the trip and you have packed snacks, drinks etc.

What kind of fun things do you with your kids when you are trapped indoors? Share with us in the comments section below we’d love to add them to this list to extend the fun!  In the meantimewe hope for everyone to have a safe ride out of the storm!

Great Gifts for Grandma- things to do in Avon, NC

hand as fish and finger as sea creatures

Handprints on pottery are a great gift for loved ones, especially those that seem to already have everything they need.  Can we ever get enough enough of those adorble little hands!  The great thing about putting handprints on pottery is that the materials used; glazes and bisque pottery are non-toxic and easy to clean up.

getting the whole family involved!

Unlike acrylic paints which can stain and cause a huge mess, the glazes used to paint low fire pottery are water based and do not stain on clothing or furniture.  In fact, even if you miss a spot it will easily wash off even after it has dried.  And if those toes or fingers don’t get thoroughly washed before your lil pumpkin gets one in her mouth, there are no worries either as all the glazes used with pottery paiting in Studio 12 are non-toxic.

Handprints on pottery can be given over and over again because there are so many ways to put those handprints into adorable poses and on everyday useful items and it is fun to see how our childrens little feet and fingers get bigger each year.

We have included several ideals of how to use your little ones fingers to make some great gifts for the loved ones in your life!

If you do a little searching you are sure to find and endless supply of hand print inspiration! Flat surfaces are a great medium such as plates, platters and tiles, but you can also think about nice everyday objects that will surely bring a smile to the person who gets to use it them such as a coffee mug with newborns feet prints.

A nice big canister that can hold cookies, coffee or all those utensils that I am sure will be used as band instruments in the kitchen one day is also a nice useful item and will be a cherished piece of art diaplayed in any proud parents or grandparents house!  At Studio 12 we have a great time working with youngsters and and thier parents and loved ones to create these very personalized gifts.  These are the kind of prints that never have to worry about washing off and love to live with forever!


Outer Banks Art

“The Wave” acrylic on canvas by Carolyn Schena


Great Art in the Gallery!

For several years Studio 12 has had a small gallery space showing off the works of owners Gary and Carolyn Schena such as pottery, relief tiles, jewelry and paintings. The Schena‘s have also carried art from other artist they have met and admired over the years this includes glass fusion works by Susan Bradshaw and copper art from Kendall and D Crews.

Copper Wall Art by the Crews

2012 brought an opportunity to expand the Studio 12 space and with it over 800 feet of more gallery space!  Now Studio 12 displays work from over 20 different artists representing the Outer Banks, the state of North Carolina and beyond.

New artists in the gallery include functional and sculptural blown glass from Brent Earnst.  His octopus sculptures are phenomenal and  he makes cool functional items like cheese forks, salt and pepper shakes, soy sauce dispenser as well as delicate Christmas ornaments.

Blown Glass by Brent Earnst

The new jewelry case (built by Gary) is filled with an array of hand crafted bling. Such as sea glass pendants and earrings by Laura Howard of Abundant Spirit Jewelry.  Her pendants are unique creations with a mosaic of glass combined with silver charms and beads and unique silver wrapped sea glass as well. Up-cycled tin cans become earrings, pendants and rings made by Meredith Young and hand hammered sterling silver creations including necklaces and earrings are on display from Georgia Dale Griffiths. You will also find beautiful earrings, rings and pendants from Alyssa Bushey who uses semi-precious stones as well as fossils wrapped in silver and gold.

Alyssa Bushey Jewelry


The walls of the Gallery are also filled with color, we have the pleasure of representing several very talented artists, such as photographer Dan Waters, Painter Katy Caroline and emerging artist Rebeccah Rogers, who paints recycled windows with an array of OBX themes likes waves and the pier.

“Fishing Pier” by Rebecca Rogers

Other fun pieces of art that you’ll find at Studio 12 include Rebecca Duffy ‘s hand painted metal sculptures and photo holders in the shapes of crabs, octopuses, flamingos and a surfer girl and boy.   Flip Flop and ice cream dishes painted in fun bright colors and fun dog leash holders from Artzfolk.  The list of awesome art goes on and on but we think you get the point, that there is a lot to shop from in the Studio 12 gallery and we do hope you will enjoy taking a look around!  Enjoy shopping from the comfort of your living room, much of the Schena‘s work as well as other artists featured in the gallery can be found on the studio 12 website.  And if you had your eye on a piece, you can always give the gallery a call and it can be purchased over the phone and shipped to you!  Happy Shopping and thanks for appreciating hand crafted art!

Pining for Pinning

Pining for Pinning

Are you pining for pinning on pinterest yet? If you haven’t heard Pinterest is a virtual pinboard. Pinterest allows you to organize and share all the beautiful things you find on the web. You can browse boards created by other people to discover new things and get inspiration from people who share your interests.  Sifting through the various boards is endless eye candy with so many delicious photos of art, food, and fun activities to do with your kids.  A board is a set of pins. A board can be created on any topic, such as Fun Stuff For Kids, Great Recipes For Dinner, or Best Wedding Ideals. You can add as many pins to a board as you want. I have found all kinds of cool things to help me organize Studio 12 and ways to use everyday objects in new ways like taking foam pipe cover and using it as a paint brush holder and great qoutes to hlep me get inspired!

Studio 12’s Words to Create By – One of the many boards on PInterest


If you are already on pinterest then you can see what Studio 12 has been pininng.  Follow Studio12hi on pinterest and find out what boards I have been pinning with everything from recipes for homemade art supplies that are great for the kids, to inspiring pottery and beautiful art.

It seems that just about any question you have been pondering can be solved with a few minutes of surfing your way through pinterest, and chances are you will find all kinds of other problems solved that you didn’t even know you had!

To sign up for Pinterest, go to www.pinterest.com and select the button “Join Pinterest” at the top of the page.  You can register via Facebook, Twitter, or an e-mail address.

In the meantime to all you pining pinnners, happy pinning!  And I look forward to bumping into you on my boards: www.pinterest.com/Studio12hi

Featured Artist Rebeccah Rogers

Rebeccah Rogers describes herself as “a wife, mother, massage therapist and now an artist.”  She was Born and raised in Richmond, Virginia, but ever since the age of 7, when her family began vacationing on the Outer Banks, it became ‘home’ in her heart. “I never wanted to leave the beautiful beach, says Rebeccah, and couldn’t wait until the next year for vacation.”

It wasn’t until May 1991 following her junior year at James Madison
University that she would actually LIVE on the Outer Banks. “I was so excited, my roommate and I packed up her car and headed to the beach with very little
money and no jobs, says Rebeccah, we lived in a small flat top house on Route 12 next to the Jolly Roger(still there) and had the best summer EVER.”
After returning two more summers and a graduation, Rebeccah packed up all her
belongings and moved to the Outer Banks permanently. She has lived in Kill Devil Hills, Kitty Hawk, Southern Shores, Duck and Waves over the years, finally settling down in Kitty Hawk with her husband and two boys. Rebeccah says she can’t imagine living anywhere else.

“My life as an artist came unexpectedly. I have doodled as long as I can remember. In my twenties, my habitual doodling turned into tattoo-like
drawings. I honestly thought everyone could draw like this, so I didn’t recognize the talent… Then came marriage and children and my creative
outlet was gladly put on hold. In 2008 a friend had some old windows that I decided I had to have for who knows what…
And so revived my creativity. It was as if one morning I woke up and started
to paint old windows. I am inspired that the Lord blessed me with this
talent and I thank Him!”

When describing her process Rebeccah says that “Painting on windows is different than painting on canvas. I use acrylics to paint on both sides of the glass to create a layered effect. This involves a certain amount of reverse painting, which is really cool to organize in my brain. I find this technique challenging and rewarding. I look forward to learning more as I paint more. When I paint, I feel joy, and I want to share that joy with others. I LOVE to paint my favorite things…
the ocean, trees, mountains…anything nature-y, really. (I like to paint un-nature-y things, too.) I want my art to bring happiness to others, so I thank you for your

See many of Rebeccah Roger’s original paintings on window in the Studio 12 gallery.  Studio 12 will start its Fall hours on September 1st; open Monday through Friday 10:00 am til 5:00 pm and Saturday 10:00 am to 3:00 pm.

Rebecca Rogers paintings on recycled windows