Meet the local artist behind the 2021 West Virginia State Ornament

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BECKLEY, WV (WVNS) — The 2021 West Virginia Christmas Ornament was announced by West Virginia’s first lady Cathy Justice this week. The artist chosen for this honor one of Beckley’s own.

John DesMeules is a glass blower by trade and with the help of West Virgina’s First Lady has created this year’s state ornament. DesMeules has been a glass blower with 30 years experience and is a featured artists at Tamarack.

DesMeules explained the process that brought this years ornament to life:

“I was contacted through working with the First Lady and her assistance Vicky and Katy. We came up with the colors that they wanted. I’ve been sand blasting glass for 30-35 years so we came up with the sand blasted design on it as well,” DesMeules said.


Through talent, experience and skill, DesMeules went to work creating this years state ornament. Through a process of glass blowing and glass coloring, the finished result was born.

“I use frit which is chips of colored glass. So we decided on the proper colors and there is a really nice green and the red we use is called Christmas red and so we decided on that and the color swirls or the gold stone,” DesMeules said.

Once the final design was approved, DesMeules and his assistant Josh Bailey worked at his glass making factory at Tamarack to make 500 limited edition ornaments. Each ornament made was signed by DesMueles himself. Each one also received a number making each one even more unique.

For those looking to grab this year official state ornament the are currently on sale at Tamarack Marketplace and are sold first come first served. If you happen to miss out on this year’s ornament, DesMueles said his studio is open to the public year round for the public to make their own blown glass items.

As for our own featured West Virginia Artists for this year official state Christmas ornament, DesMueles say he is just simply honored.

Demeules said, “Feels great. Feels fantastic. Feels great to get them all accomplished because it does take a long time to get them all together but I’m excited for the whole process.”

The 2021 ornaments are $25 each and feature a sandblasted silhouette of West Virginia on a green and gold ribbon. Once sold out, no more will be made. For more information on this years state ornament, contact Tamarack Marketplace at (304) 256-6843 or simply visit them at Tamarack.

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