As a blog follower, I often notice when bloggers post late…So I’m sorry for my tardiness after the holiday weekend, ha-ha-ha! And to top it off I’m not even posting about what I said I was going to, so I’ll go ahead and apologize for that too. I’ve been blogging for awhile now, but am still learning some things about it. For instance, the fine art of planning more than a week ahead for posts, or having it written before the day I say it’ll be posted. I’m getting better though, so thanks for bearing with me. Can I put a smiley face here? I’m going to put a smiley face here. 🙂
While I’m on the subject of planning, I have a calendar book where I write down all those important dates. On Sundays I’ll take a look at it and see what days I’m babysitting, and what days I can get the car if I need it. Days with the car are kind of special, because it’s a hassle to have it. Basically we all have to get up early to take mom to work. Ugh, I do not miss getting up and going to work in the morning. At any rate, when I have the car, I try to plan something fun to do with the girls to balance out the early morning and hours of errands. Several months ago my 3-year-old daughter Abby and I went to story time at the local library. We heard some stories about camping out, sang some songs and made a craft. A pretty sweet campfire to hang on the fridge, I think. I love spending time at home with my kids and making things in our own space, but sometimes it’s great to get out there and do something with other people.
I remember a couple of years ago being sick and watching all the extras on The Lord Of The Rings while I lay on the couch feeling sorry for myself. I lay there and watched this team of people work on their separate projects, or together on something grand and simply incredible like this “miniature” of Minas Tirith and thought how wonderful it would be to sit with creative people and talk, encourage, support and push each other towards greatness while we worked on making things. This was pretty soon after I’d moved to Saint Louis, so I was still working at a non-art job, and wasn’t a part of the local community yet. I’d have friends come up for the weekend and we’d work at the kitchen table and then later we moved to a weekly sketch group either at one of our houses or out at a local coffee shop, bar or restaurant. That feeling of connecting with other people who shared our interests was awesome, and was always a good time.
Fusion has a huge class room space in the back area of the store with plenty of tables to work on, chairs to sit in and space to spread out. Christine Warner of Color Wheel Art does classes back there every Wednesday and Saturday, which is a great use of the space, and our other artists schedule classes in their specialties every now and again as well. We also use it for events like our quarterly open house and monthly Crafternoon Delite! The Crafternoon event started as a way to get together with our crafty friends that we only see at shows, eat some snacks, chat and hopefully get some work done in the process. Like my blog posts though, throwing successful events on a monthly basis is sort of a learning process. Sometimes we try things, and they just don’t work, so we tweak the idea to see if that works better. In talking to people about what they don’t like about the event, or why they can’t make it, there are two big things that have come up time and time-again. The first one is easy, we’ve been having the event on Saturday afternoons. If there’s not a craft show, then somebody’s getting married, or going to a birthday party, mowing the lawn, washing their hair… the point here is that Saturdays are busy. So to address this, the event has been moved to a week night.
Usually I bring some of the smaller hand-work that I have to do, whether that’s sketching, stitching or tagging. My wife on the other hand will lug her sewing machine out along with some fabric to cut and stitch. A lot of our crafts require pretty specific equipment and supplies, and it’s kind of a drag to lug it all over creation to do what you could do at home, but I maintain that doing it with other crafters will be both encouraging and maybe we can all learn a little more about each other and the things we make. Is there anything else you think we could do to make events more successful in the shop? What types of things would you like to see? Do you prefer a presentation with activity type of event, over a more social one? Let us know! Leave a comment in the comment section, we’d love to hear from you!