PHONE 859-887-1427/ FAX 859-887-2805
Were a ceramic teaching facility.
 We carry a full line of paints, stains and glazes that appeal to everyone.  Everyone is welcome to stop by and sign up for the class of your choosing or pick up some supplies to finish your projects.

News and Upcoming Events-

Christmas Extravaganza Sale!

Click on the link below to access our latest Newsletter. It includes new ornaments, dealer info & current molds!

Christmas Sale Day 5

Christmas Sale Day 7

Christmas Sale Day 9

Christmas Sale Day 14
Christmas Sale Day 15


Dealer of the Month

November 2017

Alley Cat Ceramics

11294 DYE RD
11294 Dye Rd
Gulfport, MS

11294 DYE RD

Hello to everyone.  I am Mary Martin from Gulfport, MS.  My husband, John and I own AlleyKat Ceramics.  We opened on January 17, 2015. OH MY GOSH!! I was so excited!  Home from Indonesia (2yrs), home from Africa (4 yrs) and my very own studio!!...does it get any better?  Not in my world! We recently added an employee, Dustin.  We think he is wonderful and a great addition to our studio though if he doesn’t impress you with his pouring abilities (which he will) he will certainly baffle you with his trivia…and he has lots of it!!! We had so much help from friends and family as we prepared to open…and our son, Mike and his wife, Terry are still helping so much..Terry has the hardest job of all…keeping everyone focused on the job at hand. 

When we opened our studio, we wanted it to appeal to all artists and be a fun place to paint and to learn.  We pride ourselves on being a teaching studio whether in acrylics, glazes or clay. We are traditional where we pour our own greenware, contemporary as we have people who come in and want something ready to paint and we have pottery classes (wheel & slab roller).  We carry the full line of Doc Holliday products, the full line of Mayco Products and the full line of Coyote Glazes.  We also carry Jen-Ken Kilns and are a distributor of MKM tools. We carry a large selection of ceramic & pottery tools i.e. Kemper, Xiem, etc. along with Armadillo Clay and Casting Slip.

I started my career in ceramics in 1980.  The very first piece I painted was the proverbial Christmas tree at Mudbug Ceramics owned by Betty Dartez.  She handed me a bottle of RED glaze to glaze a GREEN tree…I questioned several times the fact that I was glazing with red and it was supposed to be a green tree….HOW DO IT KNOW??? Betty said, ‘you are going to have to trust me on this one”.  The rest is history.  I trusted her and I was immediately addicted. I painted with glazes and acrylics and sold many of the things I painted.

          Life happened and my addiction was put on hold.  Once I resumed painting, I did not stop.  I began going to classes anywhere I could find one.  I traveled to Texas, Florida, Kentucky, Vermont, Reno, Fresno, etc.   I had many wonderful teachers along the way.  Betty Dartez, David Hoff, Paula McCoy, Bruce Locke, Frank Kahanic to mention a few. I wanted to know everything there was to know about ceramics and I didn’t want it today, I wanted it yesterday…I became a sponge. I still call my teachers and ask questions when needed because I learned from my teachers it is better to give no answer than a wrong answer.

I started teaching in my garage and moved into my house.  I became a Duncan Ambassador, Fashenhues certified teacher and a Doc Holliday certified teacher, I have a Master Brushstroke Artist Certificate and an Advanced Air Brushing Certificate from David Hoff & I treasure both.  As I learned I went anywhere anyone wanted me to teach.  I am so appreciative and proud to be a Doc Holliday distributor. Customers are learning a new concept of using acrylics and so many techniques.  We, as teachers must instill in our classes and our customers to share their knowledge. There are too many teachers who do not want to share their knowledge for fear of someone doing a piece better than he/she or that they will learn more. We must continue to teach and share knowledge if we want ceramics to grow. I think often where I would be if my teachers had not been so forthcoming with their knowledge and tips for success. Thanks Mark for having the confidence in me to support and promote the entire line of Doc Holliday products.  I loved teaching the Doc Holliday Seminars because the acrylics are phenomenal and we did so many different pieces including air brushing.  The whole staff of Doc Holliday was always so nice to me and accommodating from Mark, Ms. Gladys, Steve, James, Russell, Lil’ Steve, etc. I have taught people from ages 9-80 the application of Doc Holliday Acrylic techniques.  (Pictures below)

I now teach in my studio and periodically at 6 different senior centers. The senior centers will come to my studio for classes also.  I also host special events such as David Hoff Seminars, the Red Hat ladies who come out and paint or slump bottles, the Newcomers Club, team building events from local businesses, kids birthday parties, Girl Scouts earning their pottery & art badges, etc.  I was also having classes at the local casino where I enlisted my friends and my husband to help with the classes.  One of the largest numbered 84 at noon and 76 at 6 p.m.  Mostly they numbered around 75 at noon and 65-70 in the evening.  These were “how to” class. I declined to teach anymore as it was very time consuming and did not afford me the time I needed in my studio.

Ceramics became a passion I have never lost.  My customers and friends tell me they love AlleyKat’s because they not only see the enthusiasm but hear it as I motivate them to do not just one piece but to continually challenge the art within them.  While we lived in Africa for 4 years I opened and operated “AlleyKat Ceramics, Soyo, Angola, Africa” for Angola LNG.  The GM of the company told me if I did the shopping for everything we needed in order to do ceramics he would make sure it happened.  I did just that and in short order.  Everything was arriving from across the big pond and now I had over $50,000 worth of merchandise and not one lady wanted to participate.  I finally persuaded about 12 of them to trust me and if they did not like it then they did not have to come back.  When I left Africa to come home about 10 months later I told the ladies that if they didn’t slow down they would have nothing to paint by Christmas! Another 12 ladies addicted! Goal accomplished!

I thank everyone who has helped me along the way, answered my questions, gave me guidance and had the confidence in me to ask me to teach.  I most certainly appreciate and thank those that came and still come to the classes and support me.  I have made many friends in my travels that will last a lifetime and I have been so blessed by so many.

I saved the best for last and that is for the man I call the love of my life, my husband. I also sometime refer to him as ‘my husband in training’.  John has supported me through the years as I did ceramics, whether teaching or going to classes.  AlleyKat Ceramics would not have happened if not for him.  He designed the layout and thought of all the things I needed from multiple sinks to where the air hoses needed to be attached, the kiln room and all the safety issues, shower walls for the pottery room…well, actually I told him I don’t do windows very well do you really think I can do walls any better… and the lighting which was so important as I lost the vision in my right eye soon after we began construction…he was doing all the pouring, loading and unloading the kiln as I could not lift anything over 5 pounds.  He made my dream come true. We continue to grow as now he has moved the pottery room and pouring room next door because we needed more room in the studio. We now have a room known as the ‘Christmas Room’ which took the place of the pottery room which took the place of the pouring room. I tell him often the vacant property across the street looks more like a Super Wal-Mart of Ceramics more and more to me…who knows…stay tuned!

Mary & John are pictured below followed by photos of their shop and friends/customers with painted peices done with Doc Holliday Colors paint!