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Keep the good times rolling.

Last week I posted on our IG feed about being a jack of all craft. It was a momentary thought as I was tooling around in the shop. But the thought has stuck with me all week. I come from a long line of crafty ladies who made and make out of necessity and out of desire. My BFA thesis was about the concept of maintaining a creative identity in the midst of domesticity. I gave a talk recently about the creative self to a group of newish moms. All this thought about the creative self has got me all worked up about the maker identity. 

Before I opened the shop, I was an art teacher and a painter for ten years and before that, I was making installation art, hanging out in galleries and sewing handbags. In my childhood, I was that kid that made her own clothes and gave no you-know-whats about what people thought of my creative flair. Arts programs in high school kept me sane and busy and happy. 

 I like making things with my hands. I like finding out how to make things with my hands maybe even more than I do the finished product. I like making things with other people. The act of making is my jam. I even wrote my master's thesis on the benefits of arts education on at-risk kids and it's implications on language development and overall intelligence. So what? 

Right now, I am sitting in a climbing gym with my Birkenstocks firmly attached to my feet as I write this feeling semi sorry for myself that I didn't decide to be really into fitness and open a climbing gym (it seems like they do well and everyone is so fit!).

So here's the point. I still like climbing. I might not be very good at it. I might get better, I might not. I might only spend and hour or two every other week messing around on the wall with my kids. I fall and I probably look ridiculous. It's totally fine. It doesn't have to be your life's work to be enjoyable. You don't have to be great. You don't even have to be good. The same goes for making things with your hands. 

We tell kids all the time that failure is an option. I have stacks of failed projects, paintings, knitting, who knows how many failed ceramics projects and more woodworking blunders than I'd like to admit. It's all fine. No one cares as much as you do about your terrible knot tying skills or your inability to draw a straight line. 

There are two parts of making that are in large part, what makes us human. Creative expression happens in all cultures. Utilitarian objects will eventually be adorned, designed, styled. We'll make beauty for ceremony and occasion. It's just what we do. The second, is that making is a social experience. From the workshops of the age of enlightenment to women's quilting circles of the deep south down to my old, leaky art room. Making together makes us better makers. Failing in front of others is not so easy to do but that too, might just make you a better person. So let's make stuff, together. 


Expansion Complete!!!!

| by C & a Staff

Woah. You know when you get an idea and think it'll only take a month or so? Well, a year from this concept's conception, we are here. We've moved form our original 650 sq. ft. storefront to two light and bright adjoining spaces with 1500 + sq. ft. We completed the workshop build out last spring and since then, hundreds of kids and adults have joined us for workshops, classes, and private parties. Phase two, our retail storefront is now complete. We removed carpet, tile and created a doorway to the workshop. We are excited to have a dust free space to showcase our favorite makers including Veak Ceramics, C&a goods, and our growing collection of vintage treasures. Next up? We will now be open Thursday-Saturday 10-6pm with additional hours as we approach the holiday season. Come visit. Find something lovely, book your next workshop or even or just come hang out. 



Summer is coming. Expect boredom.

| by Delanie Holton

Our kids used to have it all. A mom who was a teacher meant that summers were all about the kids. My oldest remembers spending every day at the pool; hiking, camping, and all day adventures. Well, now this momma and poppa team have to work in the summer. Sure we work for ourselves, but there is still work to be done and not everyday can be spent poolside. You know what, it's good for them. They are part of a family and everyone in our family has jobs, pursues passions, and supports one another (in theory, right?).

I have come to terms with the notion that it is not my job to entertain my kids 24 hours/day. Even if I think its really fun to hang with them all day. We have a home and a shop where the kids are free to play and when ignored just the right amount, they find ways to play and create without the parental song and dance. My new mantra, "your boredom is not my responsibility."

We've been talking a lot with our camp staff about creating experiences that have just the right about of support, structure, and adult intervention. This takes knowing your kids, trusting that they are capable of just a little more than your first instinct. The best experiences for kids are those that feel like they are co-constructed. Adults, your job is safety, supplies, and environment. This does not require hours of pinning amazing summer activities to orchestrate. All that is required is that you give your kids access to their toys, art supplies, and an environment to play. The kids bring the action and imagination. For instance, my kids were wandering around the house yesterday with a  bored look. I asked some simple questions that helped guide their thinking towards an activity:

  • Outside or inside?
  • Game or toys?
  • Individual or group? 

Sometimes kids just need a hand in pairing down the endless choices they have in their play. Boredom is often just the inability to make a decision and stick with it. They chose outside, the bin of guys, and to play together. For the next two hours, they created an entire world of adventure guys in the front yard. Boredom thwarted, for now. 

How are you empowering your kids to create their own summer fun? 

If all else fails, send them to us. We're building and playing all summer long. Starting next month, we'll have open Tinker Time 3:30-6pm M-F. There are also a few camps with availability. 




New shop. New website. Spring is here.

| by Delanie Holton

Spring is in full effect around here and we couldn't be more excited for this season of growth and renewal. Thanks to all our supporters on Kickstarter and our great clients and families, we’ve been working in our new shop space for  about a month. The space is light, bright, and feels so right. We are full of gratitude to all of the fine folks, craftspeople and artists who lent a hand during this process. We commissioned artist, Jack Ludlam to photograph some of our favorite tools and Illustrator, Paul Michael helped out with some friendly reminders for our walls and it all came together beautifully. 


Our new workshop has allowed us to bring in some great new teachers and workshops including a welding and wiring basics workshop with the talented, Bonnie Gregory and our first family friendly workshop on backyard beekeeping. We’ve also been able to invite school groups to visit the shop. Second grade students from Polaris came in to connect to their learning around simple machines. Students each took on a  different challenge and worked to make a functional machine using wood and other materials.


We are pulling out the stops and we want to share this makerspace with you. We worked closely with the folks over at Outspoke Group, to design a website that makes it easier than ever to search and register the perfect workshop, event, or class. With the launch of our new space and our new site, we  want to  say thank you for making our dreams of a beautiful and well stocked shop a reality.

Use the Code: MAKETHINGSHERE15 to take 15% of any workshop, camp, or product until Friday, April 15th and please, share this deal with your people.


Delanie, Jon, Milo, and Wyatt


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