Friday, 1 May 2015

Just thinking

Wood buttons I used to paint. 
A young woman from Finland visited the shop yesterday. She said the government there has set up a large craft school for anyone who wants to learn traditional crafts. Woodwork, weaving, sewing, knitting. You can spend as long as you like doing the workshops you choose, a week, even a year very cheaply as it's government subsidised.

I love this idea. 
Then she told me about the long dark winters they experience north of the Arctic Circle in Lapland. Eight months of cold and snow and just four short months of summer and I realised that concentrating on learning and practising a craft was not just a fun way of spending your time but an essential art therapy to counteract the dark and cold outside.

You don't have to live with extreme weather conditions to appreciate the beneficial effects of making something or painting a picture. It does everybody good. 

Whenever I travel back from London in the rush hour and can see the effects of a stressful life style I find myself thinking about play activities for adults in the shop. Just the chance to pick up craft materials and make something or just doodle in a totally unpressurised, unstructured way. To use that part of the creative brain that often gets ignored as we strive to make more money or climb the work ladder.

Most people on trains in the rush hour are staring at a screen, watching a film, playing a game, reading a book. The information is coming to them. How would they feel if they drew a picture instead or wrote their thoughts down in a notebook or knitted themselves some socks. Could they even do that in a cramped environment?

Would there be any takers for a free weekday evening session where people could just enjoy the simple pleasure of making their mark with pencil and paints,and scissors and glue? 


Brenda Tilbury said...

Brilliant idea!

jenny said...

Thank you Brenda for wrestling with the awkward comment writing process and winning!

Brenda Tilbury said...

I wrote a much longer reply, which then disappeared!.....the gist of it was that I'm sure a lot of adults would love to have access to trying creative things and just 'playing' without a structured 'evening class' feel.

jenny said...

Yes. The trick with the comment thing is to write just one word in the box, press publish, expect that word to disappear but then you can write what you choose and it will publish!
Glad you like the idea Brenda. As Handmade Happiness is a bit small I will look into the cost of hiring a central Petersfield venue.

jenny said...

Update; I have now booked a local venue. I'll give all the details on this blog soon.