The Weekender: Boston's Saturday Morning Newsletter
Missing art class? Here are 3 places for hands-on, crafty fun in Boston
Editor's Note: This is an excerpt from WBUR's Saturday morning newsletter, The Weekender. If you like what you read and want it in your inbox, sign up here.
To me, one of the most intriguing parts of paying a visit to someone’s home is seeing how they like to decorate.
Style is incredibly subjective. You could be close friends with two people, one of whom is a “Tom Brady den mural” kind of person, and another that’s very comfortable in a home with white furniture, white rugs and white walls. It’s a difference of taste that’s simultaneously polarizing and meaningless. Despite it all, you’re still friends, though a night in either home might be less than ideal for you, the world’s biggest fan of popcorn-textured ceilings.
For those of us who take great pride in reflecting our personalities on the walls of our homes, each framed photo, print or objet d’art tells visitors a little bit about ourselves via what we elect to be surrounded by at the end of each day. Personally, I’ve got four of these pop-up cardboard wall insects in my apartment. I suppose that tells my guests that I like bugs, or that I want to live in a storybook. (Neither assumption is wrong, really.)
But more personal are the pieces we make by hand and keep for years: Small painted pots, a child’s drawing. These are the pieces gifted and received with awe; that we excitedly point out and tell people we made ourselves.
If you’re interested in adding a personal touch to your home as you spruce up for spring or just want to make something by hand, here are three places in Boston to hone your craftiness and stoke the childlike whimsy that came with making art at a birthday party — art that could also serve as an elevated version of the classic macaroni necklace on Mother’s Day this year.
Take a candle making class at Noted Candles: Boston-born Noted Candles can be found in boutique shops across the state — but did you know that their Allston studio also offers candle-making workshops? At one of Noted’s candle making classes, you’ll choose your own fragrance and candle style (and receive a glass of wine) while working to make your very own candle from scratch. Can’t make it to a class? They also offer DIY candle kits so you can make one at home, too. All materials are included in the cost of a class ticket.
- Location: 119 Braintree St., Suite 208, Boston
Paint or throw your own pottery at The Clayroom: How often do you hear people say they’d “like to take a pottery class”? Often enough to forward this email to them, I hope. The Clayroom in Brookline offers the best of both worlds: A studio for painting your own ready-made pottery and classes for clay throwing. Head down to their studio for a day of messy fun that could result in some heirloom-worthy home decor.
- Location: 1408 Beacon St., Brookline
Tuft your own rug at Tutuland: Rug-tufting, one of many niche crafts that picked up popularity during the pandemic, lives on at Tutuland in Allston. If this is your first time hearing about tufting, here’s the deal: with yarn, a tufting needle (or tufting gun), barber’s clippers and some cloth, you can make your own soft, tufted rug in a pattern of your choosing (think embroidering, but on a larger scale.) Tutuland cuts out the multiple trips to the craft store by providing all the supplies you need to make a custom rug in their studio. Go with a friend and make a fuzzy rug for your bedside or a unique, textured wall decoration.
- Location: 115 Brighton Ave., Boston
P.S.— NPR’s Life Kit also has some suggestions for introducing creativity into your everyday life, without the trip to Michael’s. And most of the tips are super simple to make part of your daily routine.