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On Wrightsville Ave., UNCW Student Takes Pottery Business To Next Level

By Cece Nunn, posted Aug 25, 2023
Emma Brinkley opened A Little Twisted Studio for her pottery business in early August. (Photo courtesy of A Little Twisted Studio)

Emma Brinkley struggled with pottery when she started learning how to make it in middle school.

The Wilmington resident made a mug and the handle broke off. She made cups that had to be turned into planters because they ended up with holes.

“I was really bad at it,” Brinkley said. “It’s one of those art forms that you can’t convince yourself it’s good because it’s very clearly not good. And so I stuck with it, and once I got it, I understood it and I enjoyed it. I just kept going.”

While attending Hoggard High School and taking ceramics classes each semester, Brinkley started A Little Twisted Pottery, selling her wares at local makers markets. Now 21, the senior at the University of North Carolina Wilmington has built the business up to a new level by opening A Little Twisted Studio at 4410 Wrightsville Ave. in Wilmington.

The location includes her pottery for sale and a studio where she offers classes Thursday through Sunday and by appointment. Brinkley, who is also studying studio art and educational studies at UNCW, is sharing the space with her mother, Lori Brinkley, a licensed therapist and clinical social worker who uses part of the space for Lori Brinkley Counseling.

Emma Brinkley and her mother had been eyeing the space partly because of their friendship with the former occupant, longtime jewelry artist Mitzy Jonkheer, who expanded her own business, Jonkheer Jewelry Studio & Gallery, into a nearby larger space at 4403 Park Ave.

Emma Brinkley said she had always wanted to go into business with Lori ever since she was a little girl.

“We just didn’t know what the business was going to be – something crafty or a coffee shop. We were going to open a business together,” Emma Brinkley said. “Once I found out about pottery, I instantly loved it and I wanted to teach it.”

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