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Kate Kosturski's picture

What Do You Want CraftCon to Be?

The great thing about designing something like ALA CraftCon is that we can make it whatever we want it to be - to fit our needs.  Here's a few suggestions for what we can include:

  • Make and Take Tables
  • Demos
  • Craft Swap (not sales, I don't want this to be about money - though if you have an craft business you would like to promote, I'm okay with that as long as ALA TPTB are)
  • Panels - crafting as a way to teach establishing a small business, art education, etc.
  • Meet Etsy Team Librarian
  • Craft Showcase (this can be personal crafts or crafts from library programs with the appropriate permission) 

Or, we could keep it very simple and have a low key drop in/meetup where people can whip out their craft and relax in a creative space free of conference obligations.  (Downtime is essential during conference, as we all know.) 

What do you think? 

Kim Leeder Reed's picture

I'd be interested mostly as a way to meet new people -- I'd prefer a meetup with an open invitation to all interested to come and craft together. I'm not so inclined to share, showcase, or swap.


Kate Kosturski's picture

When I first thought of this, I wanted a relaxed easy place to meetup - at the ASIST (that's American Society for Information Science and Technology) meetings, someone organized a knitter meetup that was just this - bring your projects, hang out in the back of a restaurant, knit, relax and meet awesome people. :)


Kate Kosturski


Melinda Newman (non-member)'s picture

I really like the make & take tables and demos because fun and easy crafts can easily whip up enthusiasm and transition into interesting patron programs.  Also, getting together with other librarians to share our love of needlecrafts, etc. sounds enjoyable and relaxing. 

Lesliediana Jones's picture

I'd like to introduce another something to think about.  Maybe we could donate to charity in the form of something like caps for preemies to a local hospital in the area.  I am going to an Annual Meeting for another library assoc.   So, I proposed and am working with colleagues to put together this same type of event .  However, I have added the component of also donating knitted/crocheted preemie caps to a local hospital.    I am working with a hospital in the area.  I will be sending a call out to the members about the project so as to give them plenty of time to make caps and for me to collect them if they are not attending the meeting.   Just something to think about. 

I really like this idea of crafters getting together.   Demo's would be good as it may be new to some of us.  However, overall the idea of just taking time to relax and create is appealing. 

Amanda Grundmann's picture

I am most interested in having a meetup - I am still a fairly new knitter so I don't have much to showcase yet. But I like the preemie hat idea as well. My suggestion is if we have a meetup at a specified time that we do it earlier during the conference (saturday or sunday maybe). I'm trying to keep costs down and will probably leave Monday. So it's just a selfish wish, really, but maybe others are in the same boat.

Christina Coleman (staff)'s picture

I like the idea of adding a charity / donation componant to things, although I wonder if we shouldn't broaden the scope of what to donate. I can't knit a hat, myself, and I'm sure there are some non-knitters that would still like to help out.


Mari Smith (non-member)'s picture

If crafters bring something they have crafted for sale or silent auction we could donate money to Japan's library recovery. I'm sure there will be a fund, possibly through the international librarians group?

Perhaps in a drop in/meet up room (preferably in the conference hall, has one been secured?) we could include wall space and/or tables for individuals to bring a laminated instruction sheet and one example of a make and take table craft. Publicize the CraftCon ahead of time and there would be plenty ideas to make it a successful display of ideas. We could use this ALA CraftCon page to post craft instructions after ALA is over for obtaining copies of the instructions so people wouldn't need to bring a zillion copies with them. Idea seekers could just note the name of the craft they want and look for the post.

I'm up for a meet up and craft by itself, too.

I'm willing to volunteer some time to staff a room for the meet up, work on a charity sale/auction, and/or the table crafts display idea. Let me know what is needed.

Christina Coleman (staff)'s picture

Just adding a comment to bump this back up on people's radar. I'm going to check in with Jenny & Conference Services about what deadlines are for Annual Conference. I suspect they are drawing near shortly, so if we want to do something that requires a room to reserve or some staff time or if we want stuff to show up int he program we'll need to start deciding what we want specifically.

Jenny Levine (staff)'s picture

While reading http://futureofmuseums.blogspot.com/2011/03/museums-spectrum-of-control-part-i.html, it occurred to me that I should check in with you all to make sure you don't need anything more than the tables and chairs that will be in the Uncommons. Tina's correct that we're fast approaching deadlines if we want to include a small ad for CraftCon in the program book. I have a little more leeway for submitting a request for a room, but we'll start missing marketing opportunities in the next couple of weeks.

So if there's any info you need to move forward with this, please don't hesitate to ask.


Steve Teeri's picture

I would like a nice large table to place all my cross-stitch supplies, and display a couple finished cross-stitch works. And lots of chairs so everyone can work together on their various craft projects. I will bring extra hoops, needles and floss, so anyone can join and cross-stitch. Let's ask if ALA can provide us with free food and drinks. :)

Jill Sodt's picture

Do we have a time and place?

Jill Sodt

Director of Library Services
C.S. Mott Library
Mott Community College
1401 East Court Street
Flint, MI 48503
Christina Coleman (staff)'s picture

:-D We'll see what mischief we can manage for Annual, Steve!


CraftCon does have some slots scheduled in the Networking Uncommons on both Saturday and Sunday and Steve is going to be our illustrious "Maker in Residence" in the Uncommons during the show, so it's worht checking the space out. You can see the full schedule and information here: http://alamw13.ala.org/uncommons