Five Minutes With Avril Williams

Five Minutes With Avril Williams

The Portland potter/yoga teacher/world traveler on making art on the go, backpack-friendly souvenirs, and furnishing her apartment for $100.

Avril Williams

Around my house are…

crystals from Arcana, in Portland, where I teach yoga and am part owner. I did my yoga-teacher training in Aruba with an instructor who used crystals and talked about their traits. I have desert rose and citrine on my desk for perseverance and creativity; rose quartz, for healing the heart, by my bed; and selenite wands all over to help with energy flow, clarity, cleansing.

Yellena James print

A piece of art I love is…

this Yellena James print I got for my new apartment. In 2014, I booked a one-way ticket to Thailand, and I’ve traveled to 20 countries since. I’m from a small town, Alton, and I wanted to see the world. But collecting art wasn’t an option when I was traveling so much. This piece is almost like a scientific drawing, but also playful. $25. 

hemp pendant by Avril Williams

I’m proud of…

this entry pendant I made by wrapping hemp string soaked in fabric stiffener around a beach ball. I furnished my entire apartment for $100. Every morning, I hit refresh on Facebook Marketplace and see what people put up for free.

fern ring dishes by Avril Willaims

“I make these ring dishes by pressing fresh ferns into clay; when it dries, I remove them and brush on glaze. I travel with clay in my car, so I can make dishes on the spot.” $18-$22.

handwoven textile from Guatemala

A favorite souvenir is…

this handwoven textile I got at a market in Guatemala when I backpacked through Central America in 2017. I always struggle to find something that represents a country, but is lightweight and fits in a backpack. As a potter, I want all the mugs and dishes.

Arch earrings from Wild Sol

My go-to accessories are…

my brass Arch earrings by Wild Sol, in Portland, that I wear every day. The owner, Natalie Chay, and I have done art markets together and we support each other. I lost an earring road-tripping through the Southwest last summer and she made me a new pair! $18.

I decorate with…

art and trinkets from friends and my travels. This metal shelf from my mom has an animal theme. When I stay in hostels, I create a little altar next to my bed with my collections, but here they have a home.