Monthly Archives: July 2017

Workshop in Alpena: Selling Handmade Goods Online

Our final workshop in lovely Alpena was for Selling Handmade Goods Online. It was so nice to have such an engaged audience who had such excellent questions!

We began by talking about how to find potential sellers in your area, and what libraries can offer to budding entrepreneurs.

We went on to cover the basics of branding and everyone got to have a bit of fun with learning the basics of photographing objects for sale!

We then talked about different sites that patrons can use to sell items online, such as Etsy, Society 6, and Smashwords.

Thanks again to everyone who came out! The materials for this workshop can be found here, and if you are interested in any of our events happening in the next couple months around the state, they can be found here.

Workshop in Alpena: Creating Design Challenges

Our third workshop in Alpena was a morning of discussing and participating in design challenges.

After discussing the balance between open-endedness and structure we dove right into a design challenge using Strawbees. Even with this new (to most) material, our participants were inventive and thoughtful.


We then had participants go out in pairs to observe and research their car dashboards as part of a hands-on experience with the design thinking process, from which we get design challenges.


After following the steps to the design thinking process, the participants had Lego prototypes of their dashboard solutions.

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We rounded out the day by sharing our puppet paper people, and using techniques such as breath, focus, and weight (these were our materials for this final design challenge!) to perform a skit. Design challenges can be used for any subject area!


Thanks to all who registered! You can find our presentation materials and resources here. If this interests you, sign up for our future workshops!

Workshop in Alpena: A Full-Day of Fashion Hacking!


What a fun day for fashion hacking! We started out the day making some t-shirt bags with pockets sewn in them, followed by some very thoughtful conversation on the pros and cons of sew versus no-sew programs – it was great to hear so many well-thought-out ideas about the benefits of each!


After talking a bit about the reasons why fashion hacking is important, we went to talk about all the different things that people can make with a t-shirt – from kid’s capes to yarn, to a skirt, and beyond!


We also broke out our silhouette cutter to let people try out the silhouettes as stencils for fabric paints!


Our final big activity was refashioning men’s button-down shirts. So many creative things were made! Skirts and aprons, a hat, and a pillow among them!

Thanks to everyone who came out today, we had a great time and, as always, it’s such fun to be able to see what ideas people come up with. The materials, including the presentation and links to outside resources, can be found here. If you are interested in our events, you can sign up for them here.




Workshop in Alpena: Introduction to the Maker Movement

We arrived in Alpena and so did 115% of our registrants! Wow!


We did started off with a notecard activity with lots of creative objects resulting. After going over the history and theory behind some of the maker movement, we moved into forming community Maker Visions.


We continued in the afternoon with more hands-on activities, including hacking a flashlight with our trusty junk box. Our participants loved the junk box and we had more ideas that surprised and delighted us all.


After an enlightening discussion about how assessment in makerspaces can be useful for gaining support in public libraries, we moved into board game design and a brief tour of tools we like!


Here’s our presentation and other info from the day. Find more pictures in our album here.

Be sure to come later in the week or to other events down the road!

Workshop in Frankenmuth: Fashion Hacking Full Day

Our last workshop in Frankenmuth was dedicated to hacking, sewing, knotting, artistry, and re-using old clothing! Check out our presentation from that day here.

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We started with t-shirt bags, but that was just the beginning. After some of the reasons behind just why we fashion hack, we listed numerous ways we could hack a normal t-shirt, of which Goodwill Outlet has an almost limitless amount.


We spent some time learning about the Silhouette Portrait machine from our gracious host, Pam.photo3

After lunch, we had a lesson on the anatomy of clothing, and plenty of exploration time to hack to our hearts’ content. We closed with a discussion of how to best implement similar programs in different communities and what the challenges would be.

Check out more pictures here!

And if this interests you we’re doing it again a few times this summer!