Local Craft Meetups

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Michigan Group gets silly All it takes is a quick look around to see that Craftster is full of inspiring posts to get your creativity flowing. But a deeper look will reveal that Craftster, like a less sinister Soylent Green, is people. It’s the community that makes Craftster really special, and the members of the community who supply all the amazing inspiration, encouragement and advice that we have all come to love and rely upon.

As an online community, Craftster gives us an opportunity to share out love of crafting with members who are literally all over the globe. The internet can be a beautiful thing! As someone who spent her teen years writing letters on paper to pen pals around the world, and waiting weeks for a response, having a worldwide community of people who share my love of crafting right at my fingertips, is a dream come true.

Chicago Mod Meetup Minnesota Twin Cities Meetup Minnesota Twin Cities Meetup

One of the outcomes of this amazing community, is that some Craftsters have become interested in meeting other Craftsters in their area, and have found that Craftster is a great way to do this. Our City Guides provide a local forum which can be used in a variety of ways. If you are traveling to an area, they are a great resource for finding out about crafty places to visit, and learning about the area from locals. You can also use your local City Guide as a way to find other local Craftsters, and even organize Craftster meetups.

Minnesota Twin Cities Meetup Austin Meetup PinkyK and Kittykill in Portland, OR

Some areas have regularly scheduled get-togethers, and others are less structured. Chicago area Craftsters meet semi-weekly, and Huntsville, Alabama Craftsters meet monthly. Portland, Oregon has regular meetups, as well. Not everyone who comes has to be a Craftster member, of course, and these meetups aren’t “official”, but Craftster is a great way to find like-minded people to craft with (and it’s fun to see the wonder in a crafty friend’s eyes when they see Craftster for the first time!). In Michigan, and here in Minneapolis, we are working on organizing a group. So far we have met sporadically, but interest is growing, as is attendance at each meeting. We are very informal so far, but as the group is beginning to take off, we are working on establishing our plans and traditions. I have attended several meetups and find it very rewarding. As a relative newcomer to the area, I have learned a lot about what’s here from other Craftsters, and I have finally been here long enough to introduce other Craftsters to my favorite hidden gems. Minnesota Craftsters are also working on establishing a GLBT & Allies Craftster group, so I have high hopes for future gatherings in my home town.

Chicago Mod Meetup Indianapolis Mod Meetup Minnesota Twin Cities Meetup

In addition to strictly local groups, there are also one-off meetups sometimes in various places. The moderators try to get together annually (and occasionally regional mods get together in smaller groups). We try to have at least one event for members in that area to come hang out with us, and we have met some awesome people that way. Previous mod meetups have taken place in Chicago, Portland, and Boston, plus one impromptu meetup in Indianapolis. Even before I was a moderator, I made a post on the city board in Portland before a visit there, and arranged to meet a group of Portland members for dinner. They gave me lots of good tips, and we had a blast meeting and talking crafts!

Chicago Mod Meetup Minnesota Twin Cities Meetup Indianapolis Mod Meetup

In addition to US areas, there are international City and Region guides for our overseas members. As with the US guides, some are very active, and some are rather quiet, but they are there as a great resource for you. A few international Craftsters have even met, such as Phizzychick (UK/Spain) and Rackycoo (US).

Boston Mod Meetup Michigan Meetup Portland Mod Meetup

These are a few of the ways that the City Guides can be a great tool for making new “real life” friends. As always, use caution when meeting people for the first time. Meet in public, bring a friend or at least let someone know where you are going. For younger Craftsters, talk to your parents (or if they craft, bring them along! Our last Minnesota gathering had people ranging from students to Grandmothers, and our craftiness far outweighed our age differences!).

Minneapolis Meetup Boston Mod Meetup Michigan Meetup

A quick word about shyness: lots of Craftsters and others feel shy about meeting people for the first time. If you are interested in joining a group, please don’t let this hold you back. Remember that many/most of the group worry about this, too. You already have something huge in common: a love of crafting. Bring along something you are working on, if you like. It’ll give you something to talk about, as well as keeping your hands busy. Craftsters are a warm, accepting bunch of folks, and great fun to spend time with!

Chicago Meetup Minneapolis Meetup Rackycoo and Phizzychick in London

If you have a Craftster group in your area, or are part of a craft group, knitting group, quilting circle, etc, please tell us about it! We’d love to hear how you got started, what works for your group, and any fun pics or stories you’d like to share. Happy crafting!

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  1. Meg says:

    I wish I had an open enough schedule to participate in one of the many meetups in my area, I love hearing about them though!

  2. jMi says:

    Great blog, Lori!!! 🙂

    I wish I had been able to do more of the meetups but definitely plan to do more in the future! They’re a ton of fun 🙂

  3. sarah says:

    these pictures are wonderful… go coffee grounds!! visit us at thecoffeegrounds.net, or come visit us at 1579 hamline ave s falcon heights mn!!

  4. kittykill says:

    I love that we are slowly taking over the world! Those pictures makeme so happy.

  5. batgirl says:

    Thanks to the Coffee Grounds for hosting several of our Twin Cities meetups! It’s a fantastic place and very supportive of our local crafty community (and the coffee rocks, too!)

  6. crafty_dame says:

    aw, you’re making me sad that vancraftsters doesn’t meet anymore!

  7. I would love to find out about PDX crafty meet-ups! I am working hard on promoting my recycled purse business, and would enjoy community as well ;)-

  8. Miranda says:

    I hope there’ll be on in SF sometime!

  9. Brook says:

    I got a craft group together actually through craftster! We meet in Orange County, California! So far we have had 2 meetings. We have them once a month on saturday!

  10. littlebiskit says:

    Yay! I’m glad to see that piece! I’ll have to let panul know that there are pictures up. And I almost managed to avoid being in the photos, but I see you caught me in a corner. I’ll try harder to hide next time. 😉

    Great article!!! I look forward to seeing you at more meetups!!!

  11. panul says:

    It’s great to see those pictures and remember what a great time we had. Thanks, batgirl! I hope there will be another meetup soon.

  12. batgirl says:

    Yes, I hope to see you both at another meetup soon! 🙂

  13. Debra knit_core says:

    oh my gosh!!! Those pics are from Frankenmuth!!! I LOVE that place!

  14. Anenome says:

    That looks so much fun…but living in the U.K. I doubt anyone ever has anything over here..

  15. missnihkii says:

    um. so.. id love to go to one, but will prolly have to in minnesota… because NO-ONE from my area in nw wisco is even on here!!! something must be done..hmmm i am mighty spiffy with PSP, and flyers.. 😀

  16. David Millar says:

    At first I thought that two of my photos somehow found their way onto the Internets and ended up in this blog post. And then I realized that everyone who visits Frankenmuth, Michigan has those exact same two photos with the exact same pose with their friends on their blog/Facebook/MySpace/hidden in their hard drive…

    (Referring to the first pic and the one with the cheese haus mouse BTW.)

  17. batgirl says:

    Anenome, we have lots of members in the UK! You should check out the UK board and see if you can get something started! http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?board=162.0

  18. jungrrl says:

    Miranda – The mods should be meeting up in SF this summer. We’ll be sure to post in the CA board to let everyone know!

    And if anyone in Chicago is reading this and thinking about coming to our craft night, please do! We’d love to have ya!

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