Although Daufuskie has no sidewalks and no town center with shops and galleries, Daufuskie is alive with lowcountry artists “hang-outs.” You just have to look close. There’s a little cottage deep in Daufuskie’s maritime forest where you might meet an artist making unique jewelry and stained fused-glass gifts. There’s an historic Gullah-constructed house situated along a dirt road where you might encounter a self-taught artisan hammering, cutting, forging and welding handcrafted metal sculptures under the shade of a moss-draped oak. There’s a back porch where, if you follow your nose, you will be greeted by the haunting scents of soaps – inspired by the scents and smells of the island itself – delicious, refreshing, making you want to return to inhale a favorite one last time.
If you take the time to meander along the sandy side-roads and talk to the islanders themselves, you will discover that incredible treasures await you just off the beaten path. Among these, you could find:
Soaps and body lotions that are toxin-free, organic and probiotic.
Nature photography, land-scape photography and human interest photography.
Oil paintings; pastels; and water-colors that speak of island life.
Metal art – coastal wall sculptures (fish, mermaids, crabs, sea turtles, lobster, and stingray) crafted out of sheet steel by a self-taught metal artisan.
Soaps and body lotions touted to make you feel younger and more beautiful.
Wood art – naturally elegant cutting boards, frames and table tops with beautiful live edges made from Daufuskie’s oak, cherry, walnut, pecan and hickory trees.
Shell art – custom-designed mirrors, wreaths, trees, lamps, boxes, ornamental balls and even hanging ornaments made from sea shells.
Scarves and shawls hand-woven on the artist’s loom and/or knitted with an island flavor.
Soft Art – a line of fabulous beachy comfort-casual apparel.
Confection Art – custom-iced sugar cookies which are more like art pieces than something edible.
If your side-road meanderings were to lead you to the old two-room school house where Pat Conroy wrote “The Water is Wide,” you would find a coffee shop snuggled in the back. Here you would here fascinating stories about the incredibly talented individuals who make up the Daufuskie art community.
After you finish your coffee and with your mouth still open in amazement at the stories you have just heard, you might wander into the front room of the schoolhouse where you could encounter the speech pathologist from Cincinnati and the corporate event planner from Memphis happily creating hand-dyed textiles for some of their creations (scarves, napkins, hand towels, shirts) made with organic indigo and other natural colors only available on Daufuskie. Such are the adventures that await you on Daufuskie.