My love of crafting began with macaroni necklaces in preschool and has continued throughout my life with painting, knitting, beadwork and card making. But here’s the thing: I’m awful at crafts. My fierce adoration of doing them is surpassed only by my inability to capture precise lines and stitches. Thankfully, this has never wrecked my fascination or enjoyment of the process. When I learned that the OSU Urban Arts Space hosts a free monthly craft outing for adults, I couldn’t wait to try it.
Crafternoons at UAS launched in the spring of 2012. Held the third Saturday of each month from 1:00 to 2:30 p.m., they encourage crafters of all skill levels (aged 16 and older) to dive into fun and clever projects. Supplies and instruction are provided for free and often include recycled, upcycled and repurposed items. Registration for each class is required.
At the latest Crafternoon last Saturday, we made stellated dodecahedrons using colored paper, scissors, pins and glue sticks. There were 20 of us in attendance, the highest turnout to date. UAS staff members were on hand at every session to help guide us along, which was fantastic because yours-craft-challenged-truly needed lots of guiding.
Crafternoons are a perfect escape from the stress of everyday life. They're like a mini jungle gym for your brain, and you get to hang out with some new people for a couple of hours.
“This program is a great way to meet other craft enthusiasts in the community and take home a cool new craft—or perhaps a new skill,” said Cali Sanker, education coordinator for UAS. “My favorite part about Crafternoons is meeting the people who attend the program. It melts my heart when I see crafters exchanging phone numbers or email addresses with one another. Friends who craft together, stay together. I like to also see people try something that they probably wouldn't do on their own. It’s amazing to see everyone push through and help each other.”
Past Crafternoon projects have included sketchbooks made out of recycled materials; hanging shelves built with up-cycled books and twine; vase and wine bottle decoupage, mittens made out of old sweater sleeves; and microwaveable hand warmers made of fabric, rice and essential oils.
Cali is thrilled that Crafternoons are gaining popularity and thinks they provide a valuable service. “Taking time out of our overly busy schedules to meet new people and learn a new skill is very important,” she said. “I think we too often get wrapped up in our everyday grind that we forget about what our wonderful city has to offer. Carpe Diem!"
The next Crafternoon will be held on March 15. The activity will be creating weaved pieces out of plywood, nails and yarn. Click here to register.