The following is a guest post by Robin Tilling, one of the minds behind the new school of the handicrafts, the Craftstitute. Robin is a maker, a doer, and a creative spirit passionate about sharing, teaching and appreciating the hand made. I'm incredibly excited about her new school. You read another post of Robin's here.
From the beginning it was clear that what both of us had loved about the store was the sense of community, of commonality that was shared by all who entered the store. That was the magic. I saw the store closing as a cosmic kick in the rear. It was time for me to pursue the vision that was always lingering in the back of my mind, a school of the handcrafts, where artisans and community members share their skills, where people learn not just a new craft, but of the work and time behind a body of knowledge that creates lovely items.
Lisa immediately got the vision. She spent some time ruminating. A few days later I texted her that I was going to see a space, did she want to tag along?
And just like that, Craftstitute was born.
The name too was almost a cosmic offering.
"I keep thinking Craft Institute," I texted a friend.
"What about Craftstitute?" She wrote back. "Or does that sound too much like prostitute?"
Initially, I was dubious, but in that strange way that things work out, the dot com was available, as were all the social media handles, which I've been told is a big deal. We jumped in and had Lisa St. John of the St. John Design Group create our logo and website. Working with a professional, especially one so talented, was a fantastic experience and money well spent. Once the website went live, we sighed. Chapter one was complete. We had built our school.
Parents often forget that they need to carve time out for themselves. The Zentangle class was a wonderful illustration of what happens when we give ourselves the gift of a couple of hours of creative time. No one who attended Julia Gray's class considered drawing part of their skill set, yet we all went home after and sat down with our children to draw and talk and create. There is magic in that.
By far, my favorite part of this has been the unexpected moments of laughter that pop up whenever you get people together doing something that pushes them outside of their comfort zone. Being creative is like that - there is experimentation and mistakes and happy moments of things going really well. Life is like that too. Sometimes we just need a reminder.