June 03, 2009

Craft Shop offers variety of summer workshops

by Christi Mathis

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- It seems just minutes from the time school bells signal the beginning of summer vacation until parents hear their children moaning, “I’m bored.” Southern Illinois University Carbondale’s Student Center Craft Shop is just the place for children and adults to escape the heat, boredom and summer doldrums.

“We have walk-in activities at minimal cost,” said Ron Dunkel, coordinator of the Student Center Craft Shop. He said the shop is “safe, air-conditioned and fun” and that after recent stormy weather, offers a nice respite, a place where adults and children “who are experiencing anxiety over the weather could come down to our window-free areas and lose themselves in creativity.”

There is a wide variety of walk-in arts and crafts options available at the Craft Shop. Just walk in during regular hours and you can enjoy creating mosaic candle holders, architectural wood sculptures, tie-dye creations, beaded jewelry, origami, decorated flip-flops, clay crafts, paintings, greeting cards, hula hoops, masks, henna body art, plaster baby hand or footprints, and kites. You can even “bling a thing.” Prices for the craft sessions are nominal.

Throughout the summer, the Craft Shop and Wood Shop are also offering all sorts of fun classes and workshops for adults and children. The 2009 summer session includes:


• Make an ice cream bowl: This is a walk-in session where you can stop by any day between June 15 and 30 and make a ceramic bowl for the cost of the clay. The cost is $5 and all ages are welcome. You can participate in the blackberry picking and ice cream social using your new bowl to eat the wild blackberries you pick on campus and enjoy with ice cream. The weather will determine the date and details of the blackberry picking. It will be posted on the Craft Center Web site.

• Ceramics: Tuesdays and Wednesdays, June 16-24, 6-9 nightly. The four sessions include construction and wheel throwing for bowls, cups and other pieces. Participants will finish their pieces by glazing and firing them. Open to ages 12 and older. Cost is $30 for SIUC students, $40 for all others.

• Glass bead making: Two separate sessions on June 17 and July 17, 10:30 a.m.-4 p.m. for each workshop. Make one-of-a-kind colorful glass beads of all kinds to create assorted jewelry. Ages 14 and older. Cost is $25 for SIUC students, $35 for others.

• Fused glass: Separate sessions 6-8 p.m. on June 23, June 29 and July 10 and also 11-3 p.m. on July 16 and July 23. You can turn compatible stained glass into simple shapes and create flat patterns and simple glass designs heating cold glass to its melting point and fusing pieces together. The cost is $15 for SIUC students and $20 for others. Participants from all sessions may attend “How to use your glass pieces”, 1-3 p.m. July 23.

• Sumi brush painting: June 29 and July 6, 5:30-8:30 each night. Grind ink from an ink block and using bamboo brushes, paint on real rice paper, creating Japanese characters and more. Ages 16 and up. SIUC students pay $20 and it’s $25 for others.

• Bike repair workshop: June 30, 1-3 p.m. Saluki Sports, the self-service bike repair workshop, offers information about adjusting bicycles for fit, fixing flats and other maintenance. Ages 12 and up. Cost $5 for SIUC students or $10 for anyone else.

• Ceramics hand building: Tuesdays and Thursdays, July 7-16, noon-3 p.m., learn hand-building clay techniques including slab construction, coil-building, molding, slumping and extruding along with texture applications and glazing techniques. Ages 12 and older. Cost is $30 for SIUC students, $40 for others.

• Woodworking: Tuesdays and Thursdays, July 14-28, 5:30-7:30 nightly. Work safely with all sorts of hand and stationary woodworking tools to create projects. Ages 18 and older. Cost is $30 for SIUC students, $40 for others. Participants get a semester pass to the Wood Shop, a $15 value.

• Beginner Still Life Painting: Thursdays, July 16-30, 5-8 p.m. Learn to compose and paint still life, which brushes to use and more, for everyone from beginners to seasoned painters. Ages 16 and older. SIUC students pay $25 and it’s $35 for others.

• Dig local clay and make pottery: Mondays and Wednesdays July 20-July 29, 5-8 p.m. Dig earthenware clay from the rich local soil, process it, create artwork and fire it. Ages 14 and up. Cost is 30 for students, $40 for others.

• Longboard/skateboard: Private lessons only, so call for appointment for the three sessions to learn how to shape, sand, laminate and finish your own long board. Ages 18 and older. Cost is $30.

• Ceramic drum making: Scheduled lessons only. Call for appointments for the four sessions that will enable you to hand build or throw a small drum on the potter’s wheel, glaze and cover with the rawhide head. Age 12 and up. Cost is $65 for one person, $55 for two or $45 for three or more people.


• Kids drawing and painting: Two separate sessions, June 22-26 or July 13-17, from 8 a.m. to 9:50 a.m. each day. Learn new techniques for great drawings. Ages 7-12. Cost $45 per five-day session.

• Kids bowling: Two separate sessions, June 22-26 and July 13-17, both from 10 a.m. until noon. Learn to bowl in this workshop, which include lane and shoe rental and game time each session. For ages 7-12. Cost is $55 for each weeklong session.

• Origami lunch: Two separate sessions, June 22-26 and July 13-17, each 12:15-12:45 p.m. Learn to make an origami crane, owl, chicken or other creation during lunch hour. Bring your lunch or buy something on site. Ages 7 and up. Cost is $4 per day or $10 for the week.

• Kids Art Summer School: Two separate sessions, June 22-26 and July 13-17, 1-4:30 p.m. daily. Enjoy many of the shop’s most popular activities including making sculptures, pottery, duct tape creations, wax hands, jewelry, and more. The week includes a field trip to the University Museum too. For ages 7-12. Cost is $90 for the week.

• Kids -- Just the Pottery Wheel: Wednesdays, July 1-29, 1-3 p.m. Kids learn to create on the pottery wheel. Materials provided. For ages 7-12. Cost is $50 for all five sessions or $12 for an individual session.

• Drawing: July 6-10, 10 a.m.-noon each day. Learn perspective, shading, composition and other techniques for drawing. Materials included. For ages 10-14. Cost $45.

• Kids sewing: July 6-10, 1-4 p.m. daily. Learn to sew making a drawstring bandana backpack, a pillow, a puppet and more. Cost is $45.

• Knitting for kids: July 20-24, 10 a.m.-noon. This is a beginner’s knitting class and participants will make a scarf. Materials included. Cost is $35.

There’s also a Family Night June 30 from 5 to 8:30 p.m. Families and folks of all ages can pop in and participate in a variety of activities, from making wax hands to creating a wooden architectural sculpture or silver rings. Price varies from $2 on up.

The Craft Shop offers vocal, guitar, piano, violin, mandolin, violin, drawing, bike repair, silk screen, sewing, ceramics, mat cutting and other instruction through private lessons.

For many workshops, particularly the adult workshops, there are additional charges for materials. For more information about the Student Center Craft Shop or its numerous activities and workshops or to register for any of the sessions, look online at www.siucstudentcenter.org/craftshop, call 618/453-3636, fax 618/453-5209 or e-mail craftshp@siu.edu. The main office is open 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday until June 15, accepting workshop registrations and framing orders and allowing people to pick up projects to work on.

The Craft Shop facilities reopen to the public at 10 a.m. June 15 with the Wood Shop opening at 1 p.m. that day for the summer season. Summer hours are 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday from June 17 through Aug. 17 for the Craft Shop and 1-8 p.m. for the Wood Shop.