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Cabin Fever? Wholly Craft’s got the cure

Walker Evans Walker Evans
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If the cold weather has been getting you down, then Wholly Craft might have the cure. They’ve got a variety of workshops and classes lined up through the winter months that should help keep the winter blues at bay.

We sat down with Olivera from Wholly Craft to get some details on these classes and other things lined up at the shop in the next few months.

Q) For anyone who’s never been to Wholly Craft, what’s it all about?

A) We’re a small shop in Clintonville featuring a wide variety of hip, handmade goods from over 150 artists and crafters. Over 50 of are vendors are from right here in Ohio, including local favorites AmyD, Umbrella Girl Productions, Sweet Stella Designs, Alison Rose, and Moogan Creations. Wholly Craft opened its doors in 2005 and since then, we’ve worked to support independent crafters, build a community of craft enthusiasts, and provide Columbus with a treasure trove of unique, handmade gifts and surprises.

Q) Wholly Craft hosts a lot of workshops and classes. How have they been going so far this year?

A) Winter is definitely our best season for workshops and classes, partly because the new year puts us in the spirit to try new things and partly because we all suffer a bit from cabin fever. The great thing about craft classes is that you pick up a skill that comes in handy for long winter evenings at home. So instead of just hibernating, you can emerge in springtime with a drawer full of hand-knit socks!

Q) What sort of crowds and skill-levels do you have come in for the workshops?

A) Most of our classes are geared toward absolute beginners, so there’s no need to shy away! Our class sizes are super small (3-8 people), so you’ll be sure to get personalized instruction. And we’ve had men in every type of class over the years, so there’s no reason to guys worry – in fact, you’ll likely receive mad props from your fellow students for busting the age old stereotype that crafts are for girls.

Q) Anne recently wrote an article on CU about the Consumer Products Safety Improvements Act. Are you worried that it could have a negative impact on Wholly Craft or the local crafting community in Columbus?

A) They recently pushed back the date until 2010 in order to reevaluate the regulations, so there’s no reason for immediate concern, but I honestly wasn’t too worried anyway. I did my part with letter writing and petition signing, but I was also confident they’d eventually listen to all those complaints. As much as I’d like to blame evil corporations for creating the CPSIA to bring down cottage industry, I think it was actually just government bureaucracy forgetting that businesses of our size even existed. I don’t think it was intentional–we just aren’t even a blip on their radar. My favorite part of the whole mess was the “consumer safety commission” that all those complaints went to consists of two people (the third seat is vacant). So there was no way they could enforce the regulations, and they were fairly vocal for a while about their intentions to NOT enforce it. I was just planning to slap a “these products are not intended for children under 12” sign in the onesies section and call it a day. There’s no way I’d ever close up shop over something so blatantly silly.

Q) What other types of workshops will we see lined up through the next few months?

A) We offer most of our classes on a rotating basis, so if you miss it the first time around, you’ll definitely get a chance to take it again soon. Coming soon in the rotation, we’ll have beginner’s crochet, print-gocco card making, T-Shirt reconstruction, and more project-based knitting and sewing classes. I also really look forward to our summer Craft Camp, which is a jam-packed 8 week session of workshops for adults.

Q) Lastly, anything else big in store from Wholly Craft in 2009? Any upcoming shows or events you’re looking forward to?

A) This year will bring more trunk shows and special events to the shop, starting in February with Sugarcraft, a traveling sweet-themed art exhibition. As part of the exhibit, we’re hosting a free Super Desserts show on February 20th and a trunk show from amazing local perfumer Violette Market on February 13th. She’s creating an exclusive line of blends for us, which are sure to be awesome, but I would recommend coming by the trunk show to experience her whole line. It’s going to be scent heaven.
Wholly Craft is located at 3169 North High Street in Clintonville. More information can be found online at WhollyCraft.net. Several of the upcoming classes are also listed on the Columbus Underground messageboard here.

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