Local artisan featured on ‘Handcrafted America’

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LAPEL — A Noblesville artisan whose shop on Main Street in Lapel is notable for its handcrafted willow furnishings and accessories will be featured on an upcoming TV show.

Greg Adams, whose shop is located at 702 Main St., will appear on the Jan. 20 episode of “Handcrafted America,” a program produced by cable network INSP.

Adams, 70, said he has been handmaking furniture and other objects, such as lamps, from willow harvested locally, for decades; he has appeared on TV, in magazines and newspapers before — in fact, dozens of times.

One of Greg Adams' willow furniture creations. Photo provided
One of Greg Adams’ willow furniture creations.
Photo provided

But this is different because of its scope, he said. Normally he’s been on for 30-second spots, and this time it’s an eight-minute segment that took a full day to film.

A crew and show host Jill Wagner — a co-host of the ABC reality series “Wipeout” and character Kate Argent on the MTV series “Teen Wolf” — came to Madison County in September and followed Adams around as he walked them through his willow woodworking process from start to finish.

Some filming took place in Pendleton, where he showed them one of the many sites in Indiana he harvests the willow; it was a pond where he has permission from the landowner to retrieve the wood.

They also filmed in his workshop, where he demonstrated how he takes the raw material and constructs his wares, which he described as rustic in nature, and suitable for use indoors or on a covered porch.

“They kind of have you show her (Wagner) how to do it and involve her in the whole thing,” Adams said.

Adams said he was contacted by the show’s producers, who found him online, where he has a presence through facebook, his blog at willowbygregadams.blogspot.com and many other results that appear from a simple internet search.

Sheri S. Hirshman, supervising producer with Susie Films which produces “Handcrafted in America,” said a lot of factors go into selecting a subject for the show, including the quality of the product, the personality of the crafter and whether the show has featured anyone or anything like it before.

She said the show looks for people who make something practical and something that looks so good people think it was made with a machine.

“He obviously fits that criteria,” Hirshman said of Adams. “We just really like the look of his product.”

She said the crafter’s personality also is considered but “never a deal breaker.” She said Wagner “has a tremendous gift for even bringing out the quietest person’s personality.”

But Hirshman said they didn’t have to worry about that with Adams. She said in addition to being skilled, Adams is smart, passionate and funny.

“He and Jill had a terrific time — it comes across on camera,” she said.

INSP states on its website that it “features programs filled with inspiring stories that honor timeless, traditional values and celebrate the American spirit.”

It is available through more than 2,800 cable systems, telcos, and through DISH Network and DIRECTV.

Willow by Greg Adams on “Handcrafted  America”

9:30 p.m. Friday, Jan. 20, on INSP

To locate INSP on your TV, visit http://www.insp.com/shows/handcrafted-america/, click on the “Find INSP” tab, enter ZIP code, then select cable provider.