Friday, November 13, 2015

M is for Makery

Makery is a new word to me. The idea and the word has popped up, literally in my own neighborhood and I can see it becoming a new trend. A makery is a place where tools and training are provided in a work space - for a price.

I now teach classes in a "makery" - a shop where kids and adults can learn to sew or cook or bake or embroider or knit or draw or make earrings or  sausage or ... the possibilities are endless. There is another makery around the corner from the place where I teach.

A search on the word makery includes shops and studios around the country, and include words such as artisan, unique, DYI, handcrafts, "making things from scratch" and "homesteading skills to build self-sufficiency." My daughter has a school to teach cooking.

I have noticed shop front businesses where you can go to drink wine and create an instructor led painting; shops for painting pre-poured ceramics which are then fired for you. There are jewelry making classes at the bead shop.  I found one that is suited to "inventors of all ages." There are classes to teach how to make wine and beer, ones where you can learn to make preserves, pickles and jams, even cheese from scratch.

As a long time "maker" who learned many of my skills from parents, friends and relatives, I find it interesting to see a whole new business model popping up to provide the skills that were formerly taught in school and at home.

 Now that home economics and art and shop are no longer part of the school curriculum, these shops are a way that kids (whose parents have the means to pay for classes) can to learn the pleasure of working with their hands to create something that is truly their own.

As a life long and passionate "maker" of things,  I understand the satisfaction that comes from creative work, and I love the opportunity to share my skills. But, I see these cool shops as a reflection of how our world is changing. What were once essential skills of daily living, such as cooking, baking, sewing and knitting warm clothes, are now recreation. And now, the definite favorite of almost every school kid, art, is no longer free and a regular part of the school week. These shops are wonderful - but I am aware, even as I teach my lucky students, that the skills and the pleasure are pno longer available to everyone.

For those who can afford it - no matter how we come by the skills and pleasures of making things .... its a good thing.

The art on this page is a "kitchen art" piece with a touch of photoshop to soften the edges.