You Know You're From...Irma

By  | 

IRMA, Wis. (WSAW)-- Louise Schotz has been retired since 1998.

"I taught in Merrill for 21 years," she said.

These days, intertwining her previous occupation with her new one. In her eyes, a seamless transition.

"Doing science is very creative and you have to have a pretty open mind," Schotz said. "The thought process is very much the same."

Louise has been quilting since the 1980's. But after a while it wasn't fun anymore, following patterns step by step. Until she took the creative process into her own hands.

"What I discovered, is that when I make something I don't really want to know what its gonna be until its almost finished.

Later on, she expanded her creativity into jewelry.

"Yeah, I don't know how that happened," Louise said with a laugh.

Everything from bicycle parts, to bottle tops, stained glass, and many more. But also, beads.

"I used to think anything with beads on it was a little trashy and now I think everything should have beads on it."

As the experimenting continued, her collection began to grow.

"She took over the upstairs in the house," quipped husband Herb.

17 years ago, Louise teamed up with Herb, her husband of nearly 50 years, to build her a studio out back of the house. Aptly named, "Outback."

"We built the first part and then that wasn't big enough so we built the addition," Herb said.

"I helped with everything except the rafters," Louise said.

Now with Outback Studio as the new home to her creations, it was time to get rid of some of her craft work to make room for more.

"If I didn't have a little business and sell the work that I do I would have a lot of stuff," she said shaking her head.

We both agreed, otherwise she would be classified as a hoarder.

Louise has even gone back to her roots, from time to time, teaching her new craft.

"If they can get four people together (for a class) we'll do it."

If someone is excited to buy something from her, that excites Louise. Because all she's doing is experimenting, and sharing her love of the arts.

"I think 'putz around' is a good term, that's pretty much what I do."

Louise likes to joke around with her husband Herb. You see--he's also an artist...doing stained glass work. But he does that in the basement of their house.

Outback Studio is just a little bit nicer of a setup.

To which Louise reminds him, "but you have a washer and dryer in your work space."

**If you know of someone or some place that is unique to your community and should be featured, send me an email to dale.ryman@wsaw.com