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Here is our first blog by one of our WONDERFUL artist!

The Importance of Knowing Things and The Utilitarianism of Craft

by:  Caitlin Montague-W.

Long-gone are the days of saving scraps, mending, and reworking; so much so that the entire idea of crafting or perhaps the idea of being a craftsman is no longer looked upon with a sense of utilitarian, homemaking longing. Long winter evenings are rarely spent on handiworks, and a rainy day is more often an excuse to watch television than start and finish a project. I often wonder if the ability to create, fix and make-do even a treasured value in this day of Blackberries and Wal-Mart.

It is part of the human condition to create, it has been a matter of necessity to make things for a household, and it is a luxury to take time to craft a beautiful thing for a gift. What we make as craftsmen is an extension of our soul, it is part of our heart, passed through our hands and into a garment, onto canvas, or through a tool to a turning lathe. As craftsmen, we call upon a long line of talent before us, and as we use modern conveniences to make our crafting lives easier, one wonders if the crafter is allowing the technology to take over the technique.

We live in a world where baskets and blankets can be made in factories, in a fully automated way devoid of human hands, human hearts, and stories. The stitches and weavings and carvings passed down and developed through generations have been infringed upon by mechanisms. This not only degrades the crafts, but the craftsmen themselves. We should not be ashamed if we can only create simple, plain things, we should not be ashamed if we are able create beautiful things, what we should be ashamed of is the lack of want to learn, and the impulse to buy something crafted by machine.

Perhaps we are too busy in this life to craft, especially to craft simple things for the home, or to mend. Where have all the homemakers gone? For those with no time, I hope they find comfort in a quilt stitched without a human touch. For me, I hope to be surrounded by things with a story, made by a craftsman who takes pride in their work.

It is strange to think that the same mechanisms that provided the western world with the luxuries of free time, would then devoid us of the wont of crafting expression. As a society we must relearn and take back those skills that help make a home a home. Crafting should not become obsolete, it is important to know how to make things, and it is equally important to make them, allow others to see you making them, and to teach those others to make their own. It is in this way that we connect with each other, enriching our own lives and the lives of others with things that you cannot get on the Internet, and making bonds that go beyond the TV.

If you would like to see more of Caitlin’s work, come by the shop!

Well we made it half-way!  We are half-way through the year as of Sunday, and ready for half #2!  The light will start to decrease, your mind will start to think of keeping warm and holiday seasons in the future.  But WAIT we still have half a summer left right?  Shew, lets not get into all the winter talk just yet!  We have had some new super FUN classes added this week, that will be GREAT for those of you that are into Fairies and/or have Fairy gardens this summer.  Be sure to read about them more below.  Also Golden Days is coming upon us as the ‘next’ Fairbanks event.  I hope that you will join us that week and help us celebrate!

Remembering to shop local and buy handmade supports our community in so many ways!  Thank you…

Solstice Festival:

Thank you, Thank you, Thank you Fairbanks for coming over and supporting us during the Solstice Festival!  We thoroughly enjoyed seeing all our valued customers and it was exciting for us to see all the NEW folks coming through too. As far as The Stash goes, the Downtown Association did a GREAT job!  Kudos to them for all the hard work…

You are invited to:

A Hand in Creation
An evening of exploring ritual art!
Wednesday, July 15 from 5-8 p.m.

The Stash, 535 Third Ave.

Featured speakers: Jennifer Eskridge and Acting Rabbi Elyssa Joy Auster
Event sponsored by:
Congregation Or HaTzafon ~ Light of the North

Upcoming Classes you DON’T want to miss out on!

Class Name:  Knot tying

Description: A beaded and knotted necklace.  We’ll use beads and thin leather to create a choker style necklace.  Very easy & fun.

Difficulty Level: Beginning or Easy

Date: Monday, June 29

Time: 1-3 pm

Cost: $25

Age Appropriateness:              Age 7 years to adult

Class size: No more than 7

Teacher:          Rebecca Sirevaag

Supplies:          All beads, findings and tools provided

Class NameFairy Cottages (New Class Added!)

Description: The magical appeal of fairies knows no age boundaries. The notion of these mysterious creatures enchants both young and old. A tiny woodsy place where fairies would love to dwell, Jennifer and Miriam will help you create fairies home away from home for when they come for a visit to you. Come decorate your own miniature fairy house.

Date: Tuesday, July 7th from 11-1 p.m. or Tuesday, August 4th from 3-5 p.m.

Cost: $15 per person or If you book both classes at the same time a special rate of $ 25.00 for both classes is available.

Age Appropriateness: Ages 5 to 105

Class size: Space is limited (10 children under the age of 10) no more than 20 total

Teacher:          Jennifer Eskridge

Supplies: All supplies provided, however, if you would like to bring items to include in your design consider things that will do well outside like:

  • Sticks
  • Bark
  • Pine cones
  • Pebbles
  • Pussy Willow Branches
  • Feathers
  • Other natural materials such as shells and stones

Class Name:  Pixies, Fairies, and Wee Friends (New Class Added!)

Description: Jennifer and Miriam will teach you how to make your own tiny fairy dolls and wee folk from wrapped wire bodies to create posable pixies and woodland wee folk that will make wonderful playmates for you and your fairy friends.

Date: Wednesday, July 8th from 11-1 p.m. or Wednesday, August 5th from 3-5 p.m.

Cost: $15 per person or If you book both classes at the same time a special rate of $ 25.00 for both classes is available.

Age Appropriateness: Ages 5 to 105

Class size: Space is limited (10 children under the age of 10) no more than 20 total

Teacher:          Jennifer Eskridge

Supplies: Supplies are included; we will use l felt, chenille stems, wooden beads, and simple embellishments.  Finished Pixies are about 3 inches tall. If you would like to bring items to include in your design remember to keep your wee folk’s size in mind. Found treasures that often make their way into designs might include:

  • Gems (Mom’s read here: sequins, special beads, and buttons)
  • Particularly nice pebbles
  • Feathers
  • Tiny Shells

Class Name:  Mixed Media Self Portraits (New Class Added!)

Description: We will begin with an introduction to the materials, a brief historical perspective of self portraits, and a few thoughts about why this is a valuable practice whether you identify as an artist or have never picked up a crayon.  The class is interactive, the process is often playful with participants working together to generate ideas It is intended for artists of all levels, it will include some basic instruction on the scale in regard to the human body as needed or desired, but will not focus on this information, instead focusing on the creative process.

Dates:   Wednesday, July 22nd

Time:   5-8 pm

Cost: $20 per person

Age Appropriateness: age 16 and up

Class size: 10 person limit

Teacher:          Jennifer Eskridge

Supplies: All supplies provided.  Please bring duplicates of any photos you may want to incorporate in to your artwork. (Photos are optional)

Class Name:  Summer Yoga

Description: The Stash yogi, Rachael, will provide a relaxing beginning level, hour long yoga class.  Bring your mat and be ready to breath!

Date: Thursdays from 6-7 p.m.
Fridays from 8:30-9:30 a.m.
(note the time change)

Cost: $10 per class $15 per private lesson

Age Appropriateness: 13 & up

Class size: 5 person limit

Teacher:          Rachael Brechan

Supplies: Bring your yoga mat!

Class Name:  Crocheted Jewelry

Description: Come to make creative jewelry using yarn, beads and buttons. Learn many important tips to make a beautiful crocheted necklace and bracelet. Participants should have a basic understanding of crochet.

Date: Thursday, July 30th

Time: 6-8 pm

Cost: $40 per person

Age Appropriateness: 13 & up

Class size: 5 person limit

Teacher:          Hannelore Grosser

Supplies: All supplies provided

Class Name: Design Jewelry for Girls

Description:     Come to design creative jewelry using clay, acrylics and different beads.  Make and paint your beads with wonderful colors. Learn a basic understanding of color, texture and many important tips to make a beautiful set: necklace and earrings.

Dates:    Monday, August 3rd

Time:   3-5 pm (2 hrs)

Cost:    $40 per person

Age Appropriateness: 8-12 years

Class size:        5 person limit

Teacher:          Hannelore Grosser

Supplies:          All supplies provided

Caitlin’s Spring Break Stash Busting Class has been moved from this Thursday to this Wednesday!  Please give us a call & sign up, remember to gather your yarns so you can BUST out that stash!  🙂


Spring Break Stash-busting

Date: Wednesday, March 11th 4:30-6 p.m.

Price: $20 per person.

Supplies: Bring your own

Class Description: Time for some spring cleaning? Gather up all of your yarn scraps and turn them into something amazing! Come learn how to create an afghan using your leftovers. Participants should have a basic understanding of knitting, and will provide their own yarn and needles.



Yep, that means all the upcoming classes for kids AND adults have been updated on the website!  🙂 There are some super COOL ones for kids lined up for next week too…

Hope to hear from you all soon!  Call or email to get signed up…

As I said in my previous post, Abby saved the day today!  She brought her camera to the shop and was able to take photos of all the drawings that Jen Otey did…  

Thank you Abby!!!!!!

All of these drawings have very specific meanings, which are beautiful, surreal & magical.  Jen had my ‘spirit’ pegged, and I am sure if you ask the others they would agree that there’s were right on as well.  

I HIGHLY recommend doing this!  Jen will be back in the shop on August 30th for more Intuitive Drawings, so come by the shop and sign up now, BEFORE all the spaces fill up.  🙂

There will also be a Touch Drawing Workshop on August 16th too.  Here you will be doing the drawing, and then she will help you reveal what your drawings mean.  

Woo Hoo!!!  I just love art…

There is a Yarn and Yoga class coming to The Stash!

This will be an open class, for kids who are interested in a beginning crochet class.  There will be 20 minutes of crochet, 20 minutes of yoga, finished with 20 minutes of crochet…

Starting June 23rd!

Every Monday from 6-7 p.m., ages 7-10

Every Wednesday from 6-7 p.m., ages 11-15

All supplies provided!

** Parent registration required to partake in the class!**


I Took The Handmade Pledge!