The Local Hand is a gift shop and art gallery, offering a curated selection of handmade goods by local artists and makers. Our mission is to make art more accessible to our neighborhood in a warm and inviting community space, while financially supporting local artists and artisans.

Not just a store.

In addition to our retail store, we hope to offer the following arts programming to the local neighborhood and greater community:

Rotating Art Shows - we will host an art show on our walls, featuring a different local artist every 8 weeks. These shows will include an opening reception, artist talk, and/or closing reception.

Workshops - We offer arts-related workshops for both adults and kids in our community. These classes are beginner-friendly and are taught by local artists. Topics include watercolor painting, sewing, pottery, wreath-making, needle felting, crochet, candle-making, and more.

Free Craft Activities - Whenever possible, we host free events where neighbors of any age are welcome to come and participate in a craft. This includes things like pumpkin painting in the Fall, holiday ornament painting in December, and more. We provide all supplies, work areas, and light refreshments. We also partner with other local organizations like Dot Art to host free kids' arts programming.

Pop-Ups - In an effort to encourage our community to support other local businesses as well, we host pop-ups in our space from time to time. This has included Lupine Flower Co. in the Summer, who sold beautiful bouquets of flowers out of our space, and Top Shelf Cookies, who did a pop-up during our holiday open house.

Private Parties - We are also excited to offer our space for private events, such as birthday parties, book clubs, or community meetings.

Do you have an idea for an event? Please click the button below to contact us. We would love to hear from you!

  • Representation

    The artists represented in our space will reflect and celebrate the diversity of Dorchester.  At least 50% of the artists and makers that we work with will be black, indigenous, or people of color. 

  • Local Artists

    An important part of our mission is to give Boston area artists a place to show their work. At least 90% of the artists and makers that we work with will be local, meaning they live and/or work in Massachusetts.

  • Accessibility

    Our goal is to make art accessible to everyone, meaning we want everyone in our community to be comfortable walking into our shop.  Accessibility also means affordable prices, which we strive for by using creative alternate sources of revenue, such as workshops and event rentals.

Frequently Asked Questions

When did you open?

We opened our brick and mortar store on May 7, 2023.

Where are you located?

Our brick-and-mortar retail store is located at 1912-B Dorchester Ave, Boston, MA 02124.  This is right off the Ashmont T station, between Tavolo and Back to Life.

What are your hours?

When we open, our hours will be Wednesday-Sunday from 10 AM - 6 PM (closed Mondays and Tuesdays).  Eventually, we hope to be open every day. 

Are you hiring?

We are no longer hiring staff at this time, but we may be expanding our team soon! If you're interested, please send your resume to info@thelocalhand.shop.

Are you looking for artists/vendors?

We are always looking for talented artists and makers in the Boston area. If you are an artist or maker, please email us at info@thelocalhand.shop with photos of your work, pricing information, and a link to your website.

What do you sell?

We sell a range of high-quality handmade goods by local artists and artisans. This includes items like pottery, home decor, jewelry, stationary items, art prints, skincare products, candles, and more. Our walls also display a rotating show featuring a different artist every 8 weeks or so. We also plan to host arts-related workshops for adults and kids, such as watercolor classes, intro to printmaking, clay play, and more.

How do you prioritize diversity?

We believe that the artists we support should reflect and celebrate the rich diversity of the people who live in Dorchester. At least 50% of the vendors that we work with are people of color, and over 90% of them are local. 

About the Owner

Michaela Flatley is a professional artist, designer, and entrepreneur living and working in Dorchester. Since 2017, she has run a graphic design and digital marketing business, Barley Creative, where she works with nonprofits and start-ups.  Michaela received her Masters in Fine Arts from MICA in 2019, and she exhibits her paintings throughout the country. She currently paints out of her home studio whenever possible, and she frequents local open studios events and gallery openings throughout the Boston area. In her spare time, Michaela likes to cook, listen to podcasts, read interior design blogs, and take her two children to the playground.

Contact Michaela