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Atlas Insider: Them Apples

September 4, 2022

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  • When I was at school we were lucky enough to have a pottery studio. So one term a year we got to make pottery stuff, fire it and glaze it. That stuff is durable! It is all still cluttering up my parents’ house over 35 years later!

    • My kids did too, and although the pottery things are just collecting dust on a high shelf, I rather like having them clutter my house. I bet your parents do, too. Good memories!

    • We loved paper dolls and card houses growing up!:)

    • I remember making a pair of flannel pj’s with a psychedelic pattern and no matter what I tried I could not match the seems. 🙁

  • Mosaics with little bits of glass and mirrors and tiles!

    • My favorite was learning how to do pen and ink drawings and add watercolors. I made lots of Christmas presents that year.

      • I learned to knit in 5th grade. We had art every Friday afternoon, and our teacher said any girl who wanted to learn to knit should bring some worsted yarn and size 5 needles. I still remember buying the yarn at the local department store. I made a scarf. I still have the needles, one of which has a bent tip, because I was digging in the dirt with it at recess. Because I was 9.
        The beginning of a lifelong hobby!

      • That was my favorite as well!!

        • Fall term of my freshman year of college in 1960 my roommates taught me how to knit. What a gift!!

    • I learned how to make pot holders in Girl Scouts. I still have my frame and pull it out every now and then.

    • Toothpick forts. Flat wooden toothpicks glued (the high of sniffing glue too!) together into models of western log forts.

  • I was in the high school marching band – a competitive marching band – so I had no time for any other electives. I was able to take some fun classes in summer school – I had to be there for marching band anyway. I took sewing. I already sewed but learned some new skills there. To this day I make the majority of my clothes – I dislike shopping for clothes but shopping for fabric . . . and if that store has a combination of fabric and yarn I’m in heaven!

  • Calligraphy! I was priveliged to study with a master – Professor Arnold Banks – while I was an undergrad in college, then went on myself to teach my way through grad school several years later. With family and work obligations, I set this craft aside, but now,after 38 years, I’ve resurrected my pens (yes, I kept them!)!and have been lettering again. I still love it!

    • *privileged

      • I hate it when I do that too

  • Although apple head dolls brings back memories, I loved lanyard-plastic bracelets. I’m sure I’ve still some spools of plastic in a box in the closet.

    • Yes – plastic bracelets. I think it was summer day camp – or maybe Campfire Girls

  • Um, yes, dry those apple skulls after soaking them in salt and lemon juice. This is kind of a bittersweet craft flashback…

  • When I was a Sea Ranger (think of a boy and girl scout-like organization with a naval theme) we made THE MOST ADORABLE p.j. bags. They required 2, 12 in diameter circles of felt material. An animal’s eyes, nose and mouth were sewn on to one piece either directly or with appliques (or maybe they were drawn in with indelible marker?). An 8-in slit was cut in the center of the second piece and the edges of the slit were then whip-stitiched. The pieces were then hand-sewn together around the edges. Voila a cute little bag to store your pj’s that you could proudly display on your neatly made bed!

    • I remember making those in middle school home ec. I’m pretty sure the teacher was trying to clear out the older bolts of felt.

    • I had no art classes in high school., but did have Home Ec. Loved the sewing. Made lots of my own clothes. My Dad bought me a Singer sewing machine that I am still using 46 years later! I took up knitting 10 years ago and now I can’t sit without knitting. Such a wonderful portable craft!

  • Papier mache animals, good messy fun

    • I learned embroidery in high school & still do it today

  • I had one art class in Highschool and I loved the units we did on basket weaving and pottery. I normally can’t stand having messy hands, but reaching into the big bins of “muddy” water and digging out the wet clay was always part of the fun.

    • Elementary school was the time we did crafts and I remember standing in line to make a dipped candle. What? I can make this? A revelation that became a bit of an obsession: I asked for a candle making kit for Christmas, and proceeded to melt down pounds of wax to produce some quite funky looking candles. Bubbly surface? Indents where the wax didn’t quite fill the mold? Who cares- I made it!

  • I was really into origami and jewelry making during my school years, up until I learned to knit at age 18 and never looked back. I’d make origami cranes and string them on top of a bunch of beads for Christmas ornaments to gift. I’d also take a 1″ square piece of origami paper, divide it into four pieces, and make teeny tiny cranes. I’d then add small beads on top and turn them into earrings. (My fingernails had to be just the right length for that project, as I couldn’t make the folds with just my fingers. Origami crane earrings were the equivalent of sweater-worthy in knitting.)

  • I loved learning to make the God’s eye with yarn and popsicle sticks

  • I learned to sew in home economics classes back in the 60s and sewed most of my clothes for years. Then I had a family of 4 sons and my sewing time disappeared. Now I have a granddaughter and am back at it. Sonja’s book has been calling my name. I also loved making gimp bracelets; that is what we called the thin plastic used for lanyards back in the day.

  • I took leatherworking in high school and made some useful things, including a case for my tenor recorder and new soles for my moccasins.

  • I painted a lot of ceramic pieces in high school. My mom saved them and now I have a rotating collection of Halloween cats, Easter bunnies and Christmas holly plates.

    • I sewed a lot of my clothes in high school & knit my first cardigan then too.

  • I learned to sew in my high school Home Economics class; and, first project was a pale teal corduroy jumper. That’s all it took for me to be bitten by the sewing bug! From there I went on to make many of the clothes that I wore during my high school years and the years beyond.

  • I loved my high school pottery wheel class! At 59, and a mostly empty nester, I have begun thinking about giving it a whirl again. Other crafts included friendship bracelets (still love to do), cross stitch, needlepoint, scratch art, embroidery (fail), those designs where you put nails on a board to make a design using string/yarn like a mandala or owl, macrame…ok enough reminiscing 🙂

    • My favorite craft was leather braiding & macrame. In my world, the 2 are interchangeable because it’s all about the fancy knots which both have.

  • Macramé

  • I grew up in the 70s, and two things were BIG: macrame and crochet. My macrame skills left a lot to be desired, but to this day I can crochet up a storm (if needed). Knitting was just beginning to make its debut in my world.

  • In Home Economics we were taught to sew & cook. Two things I have continued to do and am actually good at! I’ve made clothes curtains and upholstered several couches.

  • Although I did a lot of crafting in school and scouts, my mother was the most influential teacher I had – she did it all!

  • I wasn’t allowed to take HomeEc in high school, though my talented grandmother taught me to embroider when I was younger, and I loved it…and the homemade flannel pajamas she made us, afghans she crocheted, etc. One of the first things I did after finishing my PhD (which I’m grateful to have had the opportunity to pursue) was to go to the nearest craft store and buy a kit to teach myself how to cross stitch. I gave it up for knitting decades ago but it was my adult gateway craft.

  • Macaroni mosaics spray painted gold

  • 60s. Elementary school in FL. We wove small circles with dry pine needles which covered the school grounds. Never did it again in school or elsewhere but I remember this fondly.

  • My favorite high school art project was linoleum block carving and print making!

  • Junior high home ec- learned to use a sewing machine, paper patterns, and make clothes. Loved it, though I learned that it was cheaper to buy clothes.

  • Sewing! So popular in the ‘60’s. Cotton prairie dress anyone?

  • We made candles in milk cartons and it seemed like magic!

  • I taught myself how to make lace. I produced about two yards of tatting.

    • We loved candle making too! With paraffin, crayons for color and sometimes even sand

  • I loved to work on latch hook and small (and very beginner) cross stitch. I never took an art class in high school. Even my stick figures needed assistance. They still do…

  • When I was in Junior High, I went to High School with an unremarkable Art program and an equally unremarkable Home Ec class. At the end of the semester, when the teachers were busy wrapping up the school year, we were offered elective short course and I took a class in crewel work. In the 1970s, patching old jeans became a bit of artistry between a little bit of quilting knowledge, plus a little bit of embroidery. These days, I am relearning sewing and am thinking about how to add crewel work or embroidery to my sewing projects. I have an old pair of jeans with ripped knees that I’m thinking about using to channel 1970s approach to ripped jeans. Embroidery, patchwork, visible mending meet Memory Lane.

  • We had co-ed sewing class followed by shop class.
    In sewing, we all made hanging locker organizers with pockets and embellished with embroidery stitches.
    In shop class we made wooden 9-Men Morris games, using the drill and planing and finishing the wood. We also learned how to create a custom silkscreen for t-shirts.

  • Embroidery floss knitted bracelets – so many fun designs!

  • I learned to crochet granny squares. I got every color of red heart yarn I could find and made a huge blanket. With the leftover yarn I made a poncho.

  • Pottery! I learned how to throw on a wheel while a student at the University of Richmond, and I was hooked!

  • I enjoy learning to tat. Knitting was more frustrating. As life went forward, the knitting stuck and blossomed. Still I am glad I learned to tat.

  • Making chains out of gum stick wrappers. It was all the rage in 6th grade!!

    • YES! I wasn’t allowed to chew gum, so I cut strips out of magazine pages using the colored photos. My friends and I would spend recess working on our chains.

      • And you make it as long as your boyfriend was tall. That’s what my aunt said. I didn’t have a boyfriend. (I was 10). And some people had enough to make a “curtain” for their bedroom doorway. Sigh.

  • During the summer holidays our Mom taught my sister and I to both knit and do embroidery, both of us still do both and much more over 60 years later.

  • Making “batik” with leftover melted crayons. Just fun playing with colors.

  • Sewing. I used to sew with my mom. Now that she’s gone, I have her machine and using it makes me feel closer to her.

  • I remember enjoying home economics class a lot! We had to choose one of the kits for making a stuffed animal to sew and stuff. Also, I really had fun in art class making linoleum block printings!

  • In my High School Home Ec class I learned how to do Rosemaling – and I still have the plate! Besides knitting these days, the ‘other’ craft I do is chair caning.

    • Two projects I recall: placing shaved crayon bits between two sheets of waxed paper and the ironing them on low made a “stained glass” sort of thing, and sticking whole cloves into an orange and wrapping it in black netting to form a pomander of sorts. I think my mother still has that one.

  • Sewing! No one in my family sewed – the basic skills have stayed with me!

  • Sewing in Home Economics class. I made a black cotton skirt with a zipper!

  • We had hand sewing classes where I learned mending, some embroidery, and made small items like napkins, bibs, etc…
    Unfortunately, no sewing machines!

  • Potholders on a loom. We did one at school and I begged for a loom for Christmas that year. I taught my sister. We made potholders until the loops ran out!

  • Origami, just need paper. I still have them, over. 60 years.

  • I was too busy taking drugs to learn anything in school.

    • Oh how I needed this laugh!

    • But…drugs are the only explanation for some of the crafts in these comments!

      • A great belly laugh at this one, DJ

        • DG!

      • DG —- Please, please, please continue to write every week. Your humor cracks me up. Thank you !

  • It’s a tie between sand casting and decorating those Wish Bone salad dressing bottles.

  • I learned to sew, knit, and cross-stitch. During that time, my favorite by far was cross-stitch.

  • Latch hook rugs, haha have not thought of them in ages. Think I had a Cookie Monster rug!

  • We learned to make enameled jewelry…I remember a Beatles record playing as we made our art. One of my few good memories of my school years!

  • I learned Macrame! And that stuff is back!

  • My favorite craft learned in school actually was learned as an adult in a class on spinning. It’s using plants to dye yarn and fabric. The latest adventure uses avocado pits and skins and I used cotton fabric instead of yarn. It’s a fun craft!

  • Candles were fun. 6th grade. Never made any since as I just enjoy the memory with this one!

  • i have been in my ‘school years’ all my life. i have taken cooking classes,(pasta and croissants being my favorite). Stained glass classes. i have windows and things over my house. Pottery classes. We still eat out of the bowls i made, i have things my boys made.
    before high school, i learned to knit, crochet and tat. i guess my hands myst always move.

  • Didn’t do too much crafting in high school. I was involved in orchestra by way of violin. However, I remember attempting knitting some mittens around that time. Don’t remember if I ever finished them. Probably had one mitten syndrome!

  • My biggest craft learning experience (beyond knitting and sewing lessons from my mama!) was a hippy/dippy 70’s experience of Craftschool (!! in the decimated downtown of my little Maine post-industrial city of Lewiston) where I learned (practiced?) weaving, pottery, jewelry making, and maybe that’s it. Because my aforementioned mom had been a metal worker / jewelry maker at a summer camp, I had access to some pretty nice metal, and I made a silver bracelet that I still wear to this day. Wow–I had really forgotten about that whole experience, despite putting on my bracelets (my second one is a gift from my beloved, departed mother-in-law) every morning. Thanks for the reminders to reflect!

    • I grew up just outside of Lewiston (Livermore Falls) – we’d take an Aug trip down to Lewiston to do back to school shopping. 🙂 We did not have Craftschool, sadly. But I learned knit and crochet from my mother and my aunt, so I had crafts at home to do.

  • I was in choir and learned to sing!

  • Basket weaving!

  • Decoupage! But more than a specific craft, I love the family tradition we had. About this time of year, we would draw names and then make something for that person for Christmas. All done in secret though my brother and I were young when we started, and often needed help. We had a roll of wrapping paper just for these presents and my mom wrote the name tags, so we’d try to grab ours when no one was around, and same with putting the present out under the tree. It’s hard to remember all that we made – I did do decoupage one year; and my dad made me a lamp and trash can to go with my early American decor – but we did it every year till I started college and we still talk about it with love these many years later (my dad is 99)

  • I learned to knit in elementary school, and to crochet in high school, and started quilting 11 years ago. But I am 71 years old (yikes!) and think it would be good to learn something new this fall. It just might be sewing clothes but I am open to suggestions!

  • In eighth grade we learned to embroider. I loved it.

  • Art supplies and art classes were unlimited when I was in school.
    So it’s hard to pick just one high school art but I’ll go with ceramics.

  • Ninth grade Home Ec., learned to knit! Didn’t keep it up but when I started knitting again 4 years ago, the muscle memory was still there. And, in cooking class, learned to fry donuts from refrigerator biscuits;)

  • Hi, In my first 2-3 weeks of nursing school, I realized every student was KNITTING!! I took it up, I have never let go. I still love it. Mary in Cincinnati

  • Not a favorite craft, but the beautiful spring day I had to sit indoors with my Brownie troop making piggy banks out of old Clorox bottles was the day I went home and told my mother I was never going back to Brownies again (she was fine with that). So a craft that caused a life change for me….

  • Pottery in the 8th grade…we had a flamboyant teacher who wore what seemed like hundreds of bracelets on her arms. I was fascinated by her, and listened intently to her instructions amid the constant jangling!

  • I learned to sew quite well in my school years, from my mom, and when I made a very nice dress instead of the sack dress in Home ec in 7th grade, got a D because I didn’t follow instructions! (I learned something there, as well!

  • I tried to learn to tat. It didn’t take, until between college and grad school. I was working at a semi-remote Park Service site, and one day, at just about quitting time, the Town Matron drove up and walked out of the car with two shuttles, two balls of cotton thread, 1 gallon of vanilla ice cream and two spoons. Nothing teaches better than experience (and a little ice cream on the side)

  • As a. Hold of the early 70s macrame and Ojos de Dios were very much a thing. We also made pinchpots in art class. I still have my pinch pots and my slab work stegosaurus 50 years on.
    Ps. I would love to have this book! I really want to try her methods.

  • In seventh grade we learned soap carving , and the teacher was very specific that we had to use the soap that floats ( Ivory soap)! It was easier to carve.

  • I didn’t take art in my high school, but I took a pottery class at the local community college my senior year. The few pots I have from that class still stir a sense of pride in me when I feel I am “less than creative worthy”. I keep thinking I will take another class and my grown daughter did so at my urging (nagging?) a few years ago. It ended up being one of my best “I told you so” moments – she loved it, but like me… hasn’t repeated the experience.

  • One year in school we had an independent study where we could do something outside of the regular curriculum. I chose to learn to refinish a simple desk. From that I went on to try other furniture projects that I still use today.

  • We had to take sewing in high school and make something with a zipper. I made the something, but had trouble with the zipper. I had to rip it out so many times that the something became thread bare. I later mastered sewing enough to make my children clothes, but never could put in a zipper, my mother would come to my rescue.

  • I liked most of the things we learned in art class, but my favorite product was a little mole in a cap and dress. My mom still has it. Also, I still use the Irish soda bread recipe I got from cooking class to this day!

  • Loved my sewing teacher. She was pregnant at the end of the year, we had a shower for her and she had us all over for lunch. Mrs. Chu was her name I believe.

  • I learned to batik in high school art class. I loved layering all that color and then ironing it off to reveal the miracle underneath. I still have my tjanting tool and hope to use it again.
    I also did apple head dolls, DG! I ran across one I kept in my “special” box that looked eerily like my dad as he aged.

  • I learned to sew. It’s taken me many places and produced many things since. I taught my youngest son and he made his own watercolor shirt in art school. My daughter needs to learn then she can make her OWN Jean skirt leaving me to knit to my hearts content.

  • Pottery. I still love it.

  • I learned pottery, and miss it. There is nothing like you and the wheel.

  • My mother taught me to sew and it inspired a lifetime of fiber arts crafting. Thanks Mom!

  • I had begged my mother to teach me to sew on the sewing machine ever since I saw her cutting out pattern pieces on fabric on the floor for “mother daughter” dresses, circa 1960. I finally got the chance in Girl Scouts in probably about the 4th grade and was smitten. I lapped up sewing classes in junior high school and made all of my own clothes including prom gowns, graduation dresses, cowboy shirts for my boyfriend and eventually quilting. Although I was a music major in college, how lucky was I to have a home ec major with her own sewing machine as a roommate!!

  • I learned to sew. Possibly a bit earlier than I would have learned eventually. Learned knitting earlier. My mother was a knitter though she knew how to sew.
    The rest of my school years – especially high school – were spent reading.

  • Making fancy outfits for my troll dolls out of felt. Sewing with felt was so easy. There was a Robin Hood outfit, a bright blue evening gown with a sewn-on beaded necklace, nightshirts and nightgowns…

  • When I was in middle school, my mother told us we would be going over to an elderly lady’s house to learn a hand sewing craft. Notice I wasn’t asked if I was interested or wanted to do it.
    So my sister an I unwillingly trudged across the street and this very kind lady invited us into her home. She seemed to understand we were there under duress. She moved directly to sitting us down bringing out odd raveing cloth with a bumpy surface, some colored threat, and longish needles. I had never seen needles that weren’t for hand sewing clothes. She held up a cloth, showed us how to secure the thread on the back, and then weaving it into the bumps. Lesson finished. She sent us home with our project.
    This was our introduction to huck weaving or Swedish weaving as it is sometimes called. I finished that towel, but I don’t know what happened to it and I don’t think I ever made another. Of course, now I would like to give it a try again.

  • I learned how to sew in high school. I made a sweatshirt. But I was fortunate to also have wood shop and learning the tools and how to use them properly was a great skill to have.

  • Watercolor painting

  • Sewing and embroidery were part of the curriculum when I was in high school in England. They were my favorite classes. I was already knitting since we had developed that skill in elementary school. I am reviving my sewing skills again and am so tempted by Sonya’s book.

  • In Girl Guides we made Sit-upons woven out of wide folded strips of newspaper, for “sitting upon” around the campfire, or more often the meeting hall circle. It was like magic to me, paper folding and weaving, to make a Flat Thing. I had no idea what a loom was until many years later!

  • I started learning to sew at about age 10. I joined a 4H club and my mom was a sewist, so I had multiple teachers/influences. I don’t do much garment making anymore, but I make lots of knitting and tote bags, can repair or refit clothing, and I’ve started to dabble in quilting. Seeing has served me very well.

  • My high school also had a $0 art budget. I remember the teacher taught macrame, which I loved. I was already a knitter and crocheter, so macrame was so fast and simple. My mother kept my dozens of macrame plant holders, of course.

  • I made lots of Christmas tree ornaments from tin cans, with a pair of tin snips. Hope the people who acquired them were careful. Sharp edges!

  • I learned dress design and construction by hand sewing before I was taken out of art and needlework to study classical Greek! Dangit. But I still make my clothes with patterns I create, and I learned all the other knitting and embroidery and crochet and you name it at home anyway. Taught myself to spin and weave on homemade looms as an adult. Those early design lessons gave me confidence for a lifetime. Thank you Miss Harris!

  • While I learned many crafts in my school years: embroidery, counted cross stitch, needlepoint, cooking, and more, they were NOT learned in school as my Home Economics teacher was dreadful. I learned them from my mom and, to a lesser degree, from her mom.

  • Home Ec – I learned KNITTING!!! What a wonderful skill to have!

  • I took an art class my freshman year of college that involved us actually doing some art, in a planned way with specific projects. We all had the same assignments and had to turn them in on time. In my high school art classes, you just did whatever you wanted, so I was in complete shock.

  • In grade school, we actually had a class on carpentry. I remember making what I thought was a beautiful desk set, i.e., a flat, sanded and planed rectangular panel that contained a pen holder and groove for pencils. I loved making it and using the finished object.

  • My mother taught me to sew in 5th grade. I made an a-line shift with poly-cotton that my dad brought home. So when I took home ec (you can tell my age) I figured I would ace the skirt. But when I sewed the hem tape on the wrong side of the fabric, she gave me an A-. Feh.

  • I used to make yarn dolls all the time. Kind of like corn husk dolls, but with yarn.

  • In elementary school summer camp, I learned how to soak the reeds and weave a basket. It is interesting how remembering what it was like to make something and learn a new skill, can stay with you through your life.

  • Started knitting in fourth grade on a Knitting Jenny that had a broken tooth — very tricky! Also learned embroidery and candle making in Girl Scouts. Cooking and sewing in junior high and I made many of my clothes in high school.

  • I learned to sew in Home Ec classes back in the early 70’s. The skill has served me well over the years. I don’t often sew an outfit anymore but I fix lots of things!

  • Fondly remember latch-hook rug making in middle school (but not part of school)… truly no skill involved, but it was fun. The only art related thing I remember from HS was my graphic arts class where we did photography, printed our own images and did screen printing, too.

  • I’m appalled that I cannot remember ANY high school art class I may have taken! It could be that I was so bad at art that I’ve totally blocked it from my mind. In any case, Ive tried lots of different crafts ove my (many!) years, including sewing for a long time. I never loved it though, and always wound up swearing at my attempts. I recently bought myself a new sewing maching, however, with the intent of using it for some of my knitting projects that require zippers. It’s still waiting for me to give it a go.

  • DG, you do ;make me laugh . Thanks for your snippets. I always enjoy them. Crafts are my thing, I like to putter, until it came to knitting and paper crafting. It’s almost an obsession, in a good way. Just got “Knitting the National Parks” by Nancy Bates from the library. It is AMAZING!!!! You must have a look, a hat pattern that represents each of the 63 national parks of the US. Even if you never knit one of them, the book is so much fun to browse ,

  • That would be…knitting! Though I also learned embroidery and sewing, all three skills I have used many times as an adult.

  • I learned most sewing, knitting etc from Mom and Nana. Summer day camp taught lanyards and things. I made lots of clothes for me and my brothers. Had an addiction to counted cross stitch, loved using it to embellish clothing with waste canvas. Knitted throughout my life, taking classes from many teachers. Have used knitting and quilting the most! Love the final products and the connection to Mom and Nana.

  • I had sewing and cooking in junior high and was good at neither. My first real craft a little later was latch hooking.

  • I never took are classes in school, but I’ll admit I read this post because I too have an apple tree.

  • I loved all the arts and crafts, but I particularly remember making finger crochet ropes out of deep rainbow Red Heart, and sewing Girl Scout sit-upons out of newspaper and vinyl wallpaper samples. Does making cut-offs out of your jeans and overalls count as a craft? How about plaster casts of your hand in the sand box?

  • For me, the only redeeming thing about summer camp was gimp. And I hear it’s making a comeback!

  • It may have been a little later than high school- I adored needlepoint! Such a satisfying craft!

  • I learned how to embroider at school! Mind you, I was the teacher and it was a class where indigenous elders came in to teach traditional skills.

  • Paper mosaics! I haven’t thought about them in decades, but your question brought them popping up from my memory bank.

  • Elementary school – knitting and embroidery, mostly kitchen towels.

  • I got pretty lucky in the art department with schools. I was an Air Force brat and DoDDs does a lot to make sure that kids get well rounded educations. (Well they did in the 80s. I hear it’s changing.) I learned ceramics, knitting, pottery, embroidery (the boys really complained about that one), and needlepoint. The last one is the only one I don’t do any more.

  • I taught myself how to crochet un my senior year of high school after knitting for 8 years. Something finally clicked (hint: read the directions).

  • I learned to make gimp lanyards and gum wrapper chains. Neither of which is even remotely useful.

  • Stained glass! It turns out I was a whiz at breaking glass in a controlled way

  • Oh it’s impossible to name just one, but reading these response is like crafters’ reminiscing roadtrip. I’ll pick making pictures with wooden sticks pressed into metal sheeting or making enamel on little copper shaped pieces. That was middle school i think.

  • Elementary school Art teacher, Mr Miele in Lido Beach in the 50s was the best.
    He had us decorate the first letter of our names. The P in my name became a ski jump.
    He introduced us to using crayon to cover a sheet of paper and after painting over the paper with black tempera paint and letting it dry, we scratched out a picture and the magical colors appeared in the lines.
    One summer I got to do basket weaving and batik.
    These were all memorable crafting moments.

  • I didn’t learn it in school, but I loved making potholders!

  • In high school I sewed all my own clothes including my winter coat and embroidered tablecloths. My knitting was okay back then.

  • You name it, if it was crafting with my hands, I probably tried it. Sewing, knitting, crochet, painting, drawing, spinning (which I learned while giving tours of a mansion General Washington worked out of, by a visiting fiber artist), candle making, wood carving, leather tooling, etc. Some of them were learned before high school, some during,some in art school or after. My passions remain knitting and painting and wood carving. My mother was my greatest supporter. She felt art and crafting supplies were an important part of life. Wasn’t she clever?

  • Does it have to be a craft I learned at school? (Because that didn’t happen.) But if it’s a craft I learned during my school years – my mother taught me to cross stitch when I was ten, and I latched on to it straight away and never let go. Forty years on, I still love a good cross-stitch project.

  • I taught myself to knit for a 4-H project in 8th grade. My knitting went dormant for a while. Much like riding a bicycle it was there waiting for me at the turn of the millennium. Now hardly a day goes by without needles (much fancier than those early ones) in my hands.

  • Well, knitting of course, but besides that, I was a 4-H girl and learned to sew. So much has changed about sewing since then though. I probably need a refresh –

  • We had a ceramic studio in High School. Brand new school. I was of the first class, so all the equipment was new. I went on to get a Masters in Ceramic Sculpture.

  • My mother encouraged me with all the crafts, & never complained about me using her craft supplies. But in grade 6 or 7, we sewed cushions. I’ve always crocheted, & I’m back at it again, but sewing, of one kind of another, had always been there

  • I was fortunate to join a wood working class— and we used real machines & tools! Plus, my teacher was missing a finger. This made us not good around & pay close attention.

  • I used to love making those lanyards out of brightly colored gimp during summer camp crafts!

  • I learned a boat load of arts and crafts, from corn husk dolls to sand painting, but didn’t take a formal art class until university.

  • I took sewing classes in school and made most of my clothes. It was far less expensive at that time than buying clothes.

  • Long before I’d grown up enough to enter Home Ec classes, I was sewing. In the summers I was expected to make a garment a week. It could be super simple – a wrap around skirt, an apron, a tank top, even a sun hat. By the time I was in Home Ec in 9th grade I won a sewing contest with a simple sleeveless dress with a sort of apron/pinafore using Lanz original prints. Much, much later I started Heirloom Sewing. The craft lives on!

    • When I was in my early twenties, I was hired as the teaching assistant for a high school class of 8 emotionally disturbed boys. One of my responsibilities was to be the woodshop assistant. I was eager to learn, but not so excited about ensuring that the boys kept their fingers (there was one who really liked to play fast and loose with the band saw!) Over one school year I helped the boys make dozens of projects including a table (this got bad reviews from the teacher) and a bookshelf (also bad reviews) and a box drum which gained one kid “best project” and the woodshop award. (That kid initially had a crush on me, poor boy.) I also made two chessboards, several clipboards, a pipe rack, candlesticks, tiny vases that held test tubes to put flowers in, and I took a beautiful block of very nice wood, put feet on it, and turned it into a sushi server. I heard years later the teacher still had my photo up in his office and said I was the best assistant he ever had.

  • I enjoyed papier mache, good messy fun!

  • As a child, I learned basic knitting, and crochet, both of which are my main craft focus to this day. Age 12, I taught myself crewel embroidery from a small kit purchased on vacation in New England. It cost $1.00 on sale, and was one of my most satisfying craft experiences. I went on to do a cross stitch sampler later in my teens, and also had a required semester of sewing in junior highschool. When working toward my degree in Occupational Therapy, I took the required semesters of woodworking and ceramics. The profession was going through a transition, moving away from the use of crafts as treatment modality. Some schools kept them in their curriculum, others cut them out completely. My school had a six week course giving us a “nodding acquaintance” with many crafts. I remember liking leather tooling, copper tooling, and weaving. In addition, two of my classmates stimulated my interest in needlepoint and quilting, which lasts to this day. I have completed projects in each of those two crafts, but not lately.

  • Knitting, of course. But also embroidery. Spent many hours stitching teacups on team towels!

  • Learned to crochet and later knit from my mother. She taught a three of us, and many years later we still knit.

  • I enjoyed learning about perspective and to use pastel crayons in Mrs. Lipari’s tenth grade art class, but I became discouraged when I was blown away by the talent of my classmate, Bobby Mapplethorpe. It was many years later when I read of his fame. Better I should have learned to sew.

  • Sewing. Not in school but after with my mom

  • We learned how to silk-screen in high school art class, loved it!

  • We had an upper elementary teacher who did all the art in our small school. We did lots of plaster of paris projects and he taught us how to make molds. We also did lots of leather work, ordering kits from Tandy Leather. He even had classes for families in the evenings, and my folks bought two sets of basic leather cutting and stamping tools. Wish I had them now…

  • Cross stitch!

  • Sewing class in middle school was a disaster! But then … by 12th grade, it clicked and I went on to major in Home Economics. Unfortunately, college courses involved only technical, science related textiles and nutrition but all good in the end. I once did a lot of sewing but now in my “senior” years, I mostly knit – gloriously so thanks to MDK and other wonderful resources.

  • I recall a class project making mosaic tiles and assembling them into a giant mosaic. I can’t recall what it looked like but I loved working on it.

  • Sewing and embroidery, tho I haven’t done much of each since the 1990s. Won the grand champion ribbon at the county fair for a jumper (the dress kind ) with tulips embroiderec on the pockets.

  • DJ, just want to thank you! Your notes always make me laugh! ALWAYS!!!

  • knitting with my camp fire leader.

  • I really enjoyed learning photography

  • Does anyone even remember who Charles Nelson Reilly is? Match Game with Gene Rayburn, anyone? Password? The $64,000 Pyramid? Hollywood Squares?
    At some point I think I have done every single craft every commenter has mentioned. I hadn’t realized the scope of my experience. Jack (Jill) of all crafts, Master of None.
    We lived on a farm in central IL so we made cornhusk dolls a la Laura Ingalls instead of dried apple head dolls.

  • Technically I learned knitting in HS and have quite enjoyed it for 40 years! Beyond that macramé, watercolor painting and sewing (both technically earlier than HS). I want to get back into sewing and would dearly love more Sonya Phillips in my life!!

  • This predates high school by almost a decade, but I think my earliest crafting memory was spending hours weaving yarn on a loom my grandpa made me using just a block of wood and many nails. A humble (and slightly dangerous!) entry into the world of fiber arts it was, but I’ve been obsessed ever since!

  • In Grade 7 we hand dyed t-shirts – batiking. We also made waste baskets out of egg cartons. There were a lot of popsicle stick glued together to make pencil holders.

  • Senior year of high school (50 years ago) art class: I taught myself to crochet. The supplies were my financial responsibility because the art department budget was …well, yuh, some things never change. The resulting project–a granny square blanket in a vast array of colors (this is when I also learned that I was good at color) is on a chair in the bedroom, and I look happily at it several times a day. Art class was a sanity saver then, as knitting has become for me now…

  • I learned how to make knotted friendship bracelets, and I got really good at it. I made intricate designs with up to 30 strands. That’s a lot, by the way. So fun!

  • My favorite school craft was in 2nd grade I think. They gave us cat tails from a swamp. We used our safety scissors to scrape off lines of the brown fuzz. Then we colored the scraped off areas with crayons. It made a pretty bouquet that my grandmother kept in a large crock by her front door.

  • I was blessed to have a mom, grandmas, and friends’ moms who taught us a wide variety of crafts growing up. Our school district’s art program was fantastic and I especially loved the fiber arts classes, and the pottery and jewelry studios. I am still amazed that we soldered silver jewelry with torches as 16-year olds, without incident! I’ve taken a lot of craft classes through the years, and I’m now enjoying revisiting some of those crafts that I haven’t kept up with.

  • I learned to sew in Junior High School and before that learned boondoggle. I made a ton of things weaving the plastic ribbon into all kinds of things! Your musings brought back a lot of memories!

  • I think the favorite craft from my young years was probably sewing. I even liked sewing by hand. Since then I have added many more fiber crafts and also others to the repertoire. I love being a maker!

  • I learned to sew in a semester of home economics in 8th grade. I didn’t like any of the projects we did in class but my father appreciated his badly mended pants and it set me on a lifelong love. I remember the first fabric I purchased. It was red and white stripes for some pedal pushers I made on my own. 7/8 of a yard in there was a flaw and the sales clerk gave me that fabric. I used the extra fabric to make a tote bag (with pockets) that I used for a full decade until it fell apart. My mom and grandmother both knew how to sew but neither enjoyed it and I would never have found that love if not for the home economics program at Larado Middle School in Aurora, Colorado. I also got to take a quarter of wood shop there and loved that as well. Noting makes me feel as powerful as a drill press!

  • When I was in middle school, the girls took home ec (which had been renamed “Family Studies” for some reason) and the boys took shop. The shop teacher wouldn’t allow girls in his classroom but the boys in my class decided they wanted to learn to sew after several of the girls made dashikis which were all the rage. The home ec teacher was happy to teach them during lunch and once they were done, the whole class wore them to school one day. I really wish I’d kept up with sewing. Maybe it’s time to start looking at sewing machines and some YouTube videos…

  • I loved making lanyards! I would still be doing them if there were just a reason

  • Crayon etching – I had to look this up – we would heavily crayon a piece of paper and then apply black paint on top. After the paint is dry, you scrape off the black paint in a design – flowers, circles/shapes (with paper clip or coin). The revealed crayon against the black paint made a “revealing” art of contrast. Think I will find me some black paint.

  • My poor high school art teacher in Hawaii had us carve horrible sculptures out of plaster of Paris. The artworks produced would make you cry. And I think we had to buy our own plaster. I learned to sew in junior high, and in high school, used that skill to make clothes out of Indian bedspreads. Today, I upcycled denim, vintage linens and indigenous materials and sell the clothing along with my knitted baby hats at craft shows. I love the serendipity of juxtaposing different materials, And knitting is my passion. Just a note: I thrill to see an MDK email in my inbox, especially if it’s by DG Strong. You make me laugh out loud.

  • One Art semester experimenting with natural materials to make dyes for yarn and fabric!

  • I learned to cast on and knit from my 6th grade art teacher. Also learned how to bind off. Unfortunately I didn’t learn to purl until years later. Call me “garter stitch all the way”!

  • Upon the urging of my best friend’s mother, I signed up for home ec my senior year in high school. I learned to sew and enjoyed it for many years. I’m getting the urge to take it up again and would love to win Sonya Philip’s book! I took a sock knitting class from her at my LYS here in San Francisco. She is a great teacher!

  • I made a heavy sterling silver ring using the lost wax method of casting in jewelry class. After it was done the art teacher weighed it and I owed $2.56 for the silver I used which should give you some idea of how many years ago that was. That class also led me to a job working at a dental lab where that and the skills I learned in Sculpture class increased my pay grade tremendously.

  • Definitely sewing- starting with a summer school Home Ec class before 8th Grade, I made my own clothes for decades. Until I discovered shopping at Thrift Stores was even cheaper than buying fabric. And by then I was deeply into crochet – and ultimately knitting – so I had MUCH more important things to spend my money on.

  • I loved taking print shop. I already knew how to sew, thanks to my mom and grandmother so I took a leap. It was so much fun laying in the type and making business cards and stationary.

  • My mum taught me how to make pompoms when I was in elementary school. Now I use the same technique to teach my campers how to make pompoms at the summer camp I volunteer with. Still one of my most popular crafts ever!

  • We dressed dolls for the Salvation Army in sewing class in nigh school

  • Learned how to knit-never looked back

  • I taught myself counted cross stitch when I was a teen and continued for over 20 years. I’ve made so many pieces I ran out of wall space. I’ve cross stitched on jean jackets, shirts, sweatshirts and a hat. I’ve given many away as gifts. I stopped stitching when I picked up knitting. I’ve been knitting about 13 years now but just picked up my cross stitch again. Sadly my eyes aren’t what they used to be so it’s a little slower going now. But I have literally thousands of patterns that I bought at full price not to mention all the various magazines. I figure I’d better get cracking before I run out of time.

  • I had an art class where we did leather work. After making and lashing an elaborate coaster (still in use), I opted to make sandals. My teacher went along with it. I wore those sandals for several years, until they fell apart. Maybe it’s time to make another pair!

  • Wood carving and print making. Now people use linoleum blocks.

  • I learned knitting in my freshman year of high school.

  • In elementary school in Southern California, my favorite are project was drawing, with crayons, a perspective drawing of the rows in an orange grove. I also made an apple head doll, with rice for teeth, but that was done at home with help from a library book. It was a fearsome thing!

  • Bead weaving. We made looms out of shoe boxes.

  • In high school art class I learned out to do screen printing and some lithograph printing where we carved the design in linoleum blocks, then inked them and pressed the design on paper. That taught me how technique and design are both important to the final product.

  • the only thing i can remember making in grammar school was an ashtray made of water and sawdust. thanks! i haven’t thought of this in many, many years.

  • In Junior High I took Home Ec: half year sewing, half year cooking. The sewing teacher was tough: one had to pass a ‘drivers test’ on the machine and if someone sewed too fast their license was revoked.
    Fast forward a few years to sewing costumes in Summer Stock. Endless pleated skirts —— for She Loves Me (I think)

  • At the encouragement of my home ec teacher, I took sewing lessons one hot summer…early 1960s….held at the Sears, Roebuck store in downtown Birmingham, AL. The class was held on the mostly unfinished sixth floor, cooled by a standing floor fan, the space dark and kind of creepy. But I completed a wonderfully simple cotton yellow “shift,” trimmed in brown rick-rack. My first creative accomplishment…I remember it all as if it were yesterday. Thanks for prompting our memories!

  • … actually an after-school class is where I learned more advanced knitting!

  • I remember learning woodworking and it was amazing!
    Also! I had an art teacher named Mrs. Burroughs, too!

  • Tailoring in sewing class! I made a wide lapel blazer! It was early 70’s! I still love to sew but not as much as knit. Thank you for your articles.

  • Pottery and working with clay. We couldn’t afford the wheel and kiln at home, so it was all new and such fun. Now, I enjoy it vicariously watching the BBC ‘Great Pottery Showdown’.

  • I learned to carve linocuts and print with them in school – wow, have not thought about that in a while. And oh yeah, we made little dolls from socks. We also learned knitting, but I knew how to knit already from my mom.

    Of course, eventually I went to design school and tinkered with clay and weaving and woodworking before settling on graphic design which is really not exciting in terms of using materials. More like the skull, over and over, LOL.

    Now I really want to take a printmaking class!

  • I learned to hate sewing in 7th grade. Then cam college, where I bought a $25 Featherweight Singer. And took a class from a tailer. Turned my head and upped my skills. Besotted with sewing. 3 sewing machines now, but not the featherweight.

  • I liked making block prints by carving a linoleum covered wooden block, then inking and printing designs. I wasn’t particularly good at it but really enjoyed the making of cards.

  • Home Econo! Sewing!

  • Yep, knitting, no kidding!

  • Sewing in 8th grade Home Ec. Haven’t quit yet. Now I mostly make pieced quilts. And knit, of course.

  • Ceramics…. We had a kiln and everything. Glazing coffee mugs and cigarette ashtrays…talk about blast from the past.

  • I made needlepoint pillows with the jersey numbers of my high school friends’ crushes (mine was Joe Namath, #12). I also embroidered a sunrise on my hideous navy blue polyester gym “onesie” – so ‘70s!

    • I had to wear the same gym outfit. We looked like blueberries gone wrong!

  • Potholders, lots and lots of them. So many that I sold them door to door in my neighborhood for 25¢ each!

  • I learned to knit when I was 9 in Germany where we lived for two years. I didn’t know any other English speakers but the Handarbeit classes were something I could follow by watching. Fortunately my mom was a knitter too. 60 years later, so appreciate this craft.

  • I would a Charles Nelson Reilly paint-by-numbers kit in a heartbeat. Really.

  • Latch hook rugs – still make them for grandchildren

  • Every craft I know I learned during my school years. Patiently taught by my mother and grandmother.

  • I learned to sew when I was 13yo, loved it, still do. My great aunt got me a Singer Featherweight, which I still have and use.

  • I got to sew during high school art class. Loved it.

  • I learned to knit. I also learned to sew, crochet and embroider. Of all of these, I still knit almost every day.

  • Plastic canvas baby! Tacky tissue box covers were my specialty. Fun to make but ugly as sin.

  • I learned to do copper enameling at camp. Loved putting those little glass pieces on the item and seeing how they would melt in the kiln.

  • When I was 5, I did a very simple cross-stitch initials of my father on a handkerchief. For some reason, I got it in my head that it was super-hard. Fast forward to 9th grade home ec, and we did a cross-stitch motif for Mother’s Day… and I LOVED it! I still like to cross-stitch occasionally, most recently a moon-phases thingie for my daughter last Christmas. I’ve seen apple-head dolls and thought them slightly creepy. I can’t imagine drawing skulls all year, but I bet the art got better from 1st to last semester!

  • Baking.

  • Favorite? All the obvious ones. But I vividly remember a sand paint by numbers kit that I reliably pulled out on rainy days.

  • I was lucky enough to have had a 4th grade teacher who brought in a lady who taught us to crochet. I took to that like a, well, who knows what? Fish to water? And then managed to teach myself to knit…that’s all it took to release the yarnivore! Lol!

  • I’ve thought about your question quite a lot (considering there are other things I should be thinking about, such as Where On Earth my circular 5.5mm needle is hidden, because I NEED it) and am sorry to report that I can’t think of a single craft I learned in school – in retrospect, I wonder if there was a cut-back (either fund-wise or philosophical) in Arts during my early school years. It’s very possible. I believe there must have been issues along those lines in other Subjects, because all four of my older brothers enjoyed field trips to historic sites in Boston when they reached a certain grade, but by the time I got there, it was no longer important to take a field trip to anywhere, or, apparently, to learn anything about MA history. But back to the topic: when I was maybe 9 years old, a friend’s mom gave me a boost in knitting when she introduced me to the concept of knitting a headband on Size 10 needles instead of my previous attempt to scale a solid garter stitch afghan on Size 5, and that most certainly set me on the path of knitting and knitting and knitting. Thank you, Edwina. Your memory lives on in all my stitches.

  • I loved making keychains and bracelets with the brightly colored, plastic lacing. But then I learned to knit and embroider, and I was permanently hooked on fiber!

  • In high school I loved cutting pictures out of magazines, then writing the song lyrics and glueing the pictures to the pages to match. Carole King was my favorite

  • Calligraphy. We were each allowed 1 sheet of parchment, so if you made a mistake you were out of luck.

  • We were lucky to have a house beside the school for home economics classes. Sewing was my favorite part as my Mom and Aunt sewed but neither taught me and I wanted to make things too.

  • I first learned to sew in Home Ec class in high school. I did not enjoy the class and didn’t sew again for many years. Now I’m working on a cosplay to enter into a masquerade competition!

  • Ah man it’s gotta be friendship bracelets. I got *commissions* for em in elementary school. I’m still decent, too!

  • Yes it seemed like art classes WERE always getting cut! My mom taught art after school in the 80s in our converted garage & her classes were always full. I remember wishing I could take shop class with the guys. But no, despite a then-nascent ERA. I did enjoy carving into a rubber block for printmaking. We only got one block & I was a weirdo kid with weirdo friends, one of whom shared/invented a silly word that always cracked us up: brak! My art teacher was not impressed. But she didn’t crush my idea either.
    Hey does anybody else remember the odd phenom of female art teachers always being gorgeous, like it was in the job description?

  • Macrame!

  • All the boys had to take home ec and all the girls had to take wood shop one year. Turned out that I loved wood shop. I never have had a chance to do it again but it was very fun and I produced a lidded box that impressed me as an adult!

  • Reading all the comments was a trip down memory lane. I think I have done just about every one of them. Yes, even dried apple dolls. I’m still a crafter but I think knitting is my favorite “craft” these day.

  • I learned how to knit in class!

  • I learned to sew in 7th grade home ec.

  • i have loved carving spoons, making jewelry, embroidering on jeans, sewing, and of course, knitting!

  • Ooh this was hard to decide on I loved learning calligraphy especially with fountain pens (something I am now addicted too lol) and learning water colour painting! So many wonderful memories I have crafting in some manner at home!

  • Finger painting is a winner!

  • Keep it Simple. That was the best thing I learned in my school years. That is a life rule.

  • I learned to knit when I was 8, but I learned to sew in high school (maybe middle school). Back in the late 60’s I made a lot of my own clothes, mini skirts, bikinis, dresses, wrap around skirts (does anyone remember kettlecloth?), and a swing jacket out of wool I wish I still had! I remember working on a corduroy blazer where one sleeve the nap was in the wrong direction, fortunately I had more fabric. I would to browse the book and then pass it on to my daughter in law who is a beginner sewest.

  • The nightmare of being handed a piece of balsa wood and having to carve it into something identifiable! I, the daughter of a talented wood carver was an abject failure.

  • I learned to use a sewing machine in 7th grade Home Ec. My mother refused to teach me and I wasn’t allowed to use hers until I learned in school. She just wasn’t someone who shared stuff with her kids and I think her mother had refused to teach her. Luckily when my mother married my father, her new family had a weekly sewing club (complete with cocktails) and she became a serious seamstress (in spite of the cocktails). And her 3 daughters caught the maker bug on their own.

  • oddly enough, I hated home economics class and I vaguely remember doing some psychedelic line drawings we did. The group setting wasn’t my thing back then. But independently, I taught myself to knit, crochet, embroider, cross-stitch. I even took a stab at tatting but that one didn’t last too long.

  • I learned how to free hand block letters – something that I have used ever since.

  • Home Economics was the closest thing to art class I took in school. We cooked, sewed and learned how to create a budget. Cooking was like painting…all our dishes had to look artfully arranged. The dishes had to compliment the food.

  • Potholders on a small square loom, which started my love for weaving.

  • I was also in band, so didn’t have any spare time in my school schedule for other art classes. I remember wanting to run screaming down the hallway in sewing class, though. My mother was a professional seamstress and if I did things her way I got in trouble with the sewing teacher, who did things “wrong” (according to my mother).

  • The latest craze in my house these days is a resurrection of camp crafts – my daughter is discovering friendship bracelets and plastic lacing/pony bead animals, and I get to rediscover how fun they are with her! We now have a whole army of pony bead lizards, snakes, and dragonflies!

  • I remember making countless starched cheesecloth ghosts.. BOO!

  • I learned the art of scherenschnitte (German paper cutting) in junior high. I had such fun making everything from animal shapes to silhouettes of friends to greeting cards. Teeny, tiny very sharp snipping scissors were always in my hands for most of my junior high years. ✂️

  • I remember apple head dolls. My favorite childhood craft was making apple blossoms from a special waxed paper/felt and premade stamens, wire and waxy paper stem tape. Ooh and 3D paper stars that we dipped in parafin wax. I suppose now we’d call it origami, but this was rural Idaho in the early ’60s.

  • No idea why, but at the time I really loved the craft where you put ragged pieces of masking tape all over a bottle or vase, and then use liquid shoe polish to “dye” them and it was supposed to look like leather. Oh wait – I know why – because anyone could do it and they all ended up looking about the same, regardless of artistic skill. The other one I loved was taking styrofoam bells, trees or balls and pressing little scraps of calico into them to make three-dimensional crazy-quilt looking items. This too required no actual artistic skill and also fit splendidly with the “country/prairie/calico” thing that was very big around that time.

  • In 6th grade we made stained glass panels. Beautiful!

  • I don’t remember what it was called but we put nails in a wooden board and then used string to weave designs. I do remember having fun doing it.

  • Sewing! My sisters and I were self-taught, and in junior high home ec class I remember being better than the teacher in helping my classmates make that elastic-waist dirndl skirt. There were fabric departments in department stores and fabric stores in every town. We bought Vogue designer patterns and spent long weekends with the TV blasting old movies as we cut, basted and sewed.

  • Does anyone else remember the Vincent Price Shrunken Head Apple Sculpture kit?

  • Making dirndl skirts (hope I spelled that correctly).

  • We made a lot of Christmas ornaments in elementary school.

  • I was just wild for making linoleum stamps for cards and decorated paper. It was rare to have an art teacher who trusted a bunch of kids with Xacto knives, to be sure! But all of it… using the brayer, carefully layering on the colors… was intoxicating to me.

  • Although I took art in school and loved drawing, it was science that took over my world. I love learning how things work from cells to engines. Knitting combines those two worlds for me.

  • I don’t recall any art/craft classes other than Home Ec cooking and drawing classes. However I did teach myself needlepoint in high school and fell in love with cross-stitching. In my 20s, I lived in London and took up knitting, which is now my lifelong companion. Four years ago, I started to teach myself how to sew and hope to obtain a fully “me-made” wardrobe.

  • I learned basic sewing in Junior High Home Ec. Didn’t take any art in HS and one Home Ec class – Foreign Foods. Took the Home Ec class instead of Physics. Not sure it was a good decision in the long run!

  • i learned to make a quilt in 1973! since then i’ve continued to quilt and now that i’m retired i get to sew daily–just learned how to cut and sew curves!!!!! whooohooo!

  • We did ceramics in the 4th grade.

  • Learned during the school years, but not at school – macrame and crochet (what can I say, boomer kid here ) which I rarely do now, and knitting, sewing, and embroidery, which are still active pursuits

  • During my school years I did basketweaving, and have not really ever done it again. I should change that.

  • In junior high we took sewing one semester and cooking the next and I loved both so much that I wanted to become a home ec teacher! Fortunately, I did not because the job went away not too many years later.

  • Friendship bracelets and string bead necklaces. Some things you never outgrow.

  • Definitely knitting, which I learned from my piano teacher Mrs Grace.

  • I actually learned to knit in high school – walked over to the shopping center from school to Sears and learned to knit in a back room!

  • I think I missed out on art class in high school because I took band class instead. But I remember my mother teaching me to macrame and sew. I treasure these memories. I’d really like to delve into seeing again !

  • I was lucky enough to have a mom who created make-your-own kits for our birthday parties. We sewed burlap dolls with yarn hair and personalized fabric bean bags, among other cool kid crafts. And everyone got to take their creations home. I can remember the smell of cut burlap.

  • I learned cross stitch in my tween years and proceeded to complete a Victorian Santa for my Mom each year for 8 years running-then found quilting, then found knitting in my thirties. Haven’t cross stitched in years. Don’t think my old eyes could handle those tiny charts now.

  • I went to Farmersville elementary, junior high and high school. the most fun i had was the annual ‘painting’ of seasonal designs on the huge windows. we sketched designs, dyed GlassWax with tempura or food coloring, brushed the paint right onto the windows. it was amazing! we still had light, and the sun made the colors glow! then, once the season was in the past, the janitor wiped the windows clean and we had sparkling clear views! i still stencil with GlassWax on my windows at home and my children enjoyed doing it when they were younger. faux stained glass windows!

  • Sixth grade, it was called home economics and the project was the popover top. Navy blue gingham with red and green ric-rac for trim. Two almost squares sewn together and hemmed. The ric-rac was used to create a design-an apple with a stem and leaf. This, my first sewing project never fit!

  • We made sock monkeys. I still have mine. I’m not sure anyone else loved it, but I love to make things, and I had so much fun!

  • Sewing clothes in junior high is still one of the most exciting things that I learned in school. The ability to make a Kelly green pleated skirt that fit my body was mind blowing. I proceeded to sew. My mother saw how enthusiastic I was and scraped money together for sewing lessons for me. I still love to sew and sew most of my clothing.

  • I loved to make snowflake type cutouts with black construction paper and then fill in the holes with scraps of tissue paper — so pretty hanging in windows!

  • Every summer our community had a summer camp. My favorite activities were always making the sit-a-pons and potholders.

  • There was no art or craft study at my school. But I did teach myself how to use the ancient Singer sewing machine to make garments. I had a me-made wardrobe long before the term was ever thought of. In the decades before fast fashion, clothes were expensive. The only way to afford a new dress was to make one. There wasn’t anything special about knowing how to sew back then. It wasn’t a path to a more soulful way of living. All my friends, or their mothers, made most of their clothes. What was a necessity then is a path to enlightenment today.

  • Cloisonne jewelery was so fun and definitely not something I could do at home. We were so fortunate to be able to lots of different jewelry in my high school’s art studio.

  • I loved throwing bowls on a pottery wheel. Must have been a serious budget for that!

  • Which one do I pick sewing or knitting? I pick both . I’ve been sewing since I was around 10. I made clothes for my Barbie’s . I’ve been knitting since I was about 14.

  • I learned how to make apple head dolls from my grandmother.

    I started sewing when I was little, well before home ec—as it was called in middle school. The first clothing I remember making was a skirt. The front was a beautifully soft deep blue corduroy. The back was white sheeting. There wasn’t enough corduroy for a whole skirt, but I didn’t care because I didn’t see the back of it. I probably was 7 or 8.

  • 6th grade art class:
    I remember our teacher asking us to bring in bottles… almost every student brought in wine or beer bottles. We then used a glass cutter to take off the top portion at the neck & smooth the edge. Then we ripped small pieces of masking tape & covered the bottle with them. Building up overlapping layers. Once fully covered we rubbed shoe polish all over it & wiped it down. Was supposed to give the look of a weathered leather pencil holder. It was strange but I proudly carried it home & gave it yo my dad.

  • My sister’s favorite childhood craft was a maraca made out of paper mache with a light bulb inside that you then break. Permission to play with broken glass. What could go wrong?

  • Macrame!

  • I do not remember a single craft I learned in school. I was on a very academic track. The craftiest thing I did was scene building and painting for the plays I was in, and I only did that because all the actors did that. We had no choice. It wasn’t that I was opposed; it’s just that I didn’t think I was very good.

    My sister, however, was less academic and she got to take Home Ec, where they learned to use sewing machines. She also got to take wood shop. I’d have loved both of those!

  • I learned to sew in elementary school home economics classes and refined my skills in high school classes and on my own at home. My mother let me use her 1950s Singer portable sewing machine (still my only sewing machine—one I hauled to our vacation spot last weekend to upgrade the screen on our gazebo). I was so loved sewing that I became a home economist and teacher. However, instead of telling my students that they had to choose from 2 patterns that I had selected (as my teachers, sadly, had), I helped them find the right pattern for them. My students made everything from sweat pants to beaded moccasins and mitts to three piece suits. I have used my skills, and my trusty old Singer, to make blue jeans, swimsuits, tailored suits, my graduation dresses, my wedding gown and clothing for my children. While knitting has my heart and happily monopolizes my time, I have big plans to sew a lot when I retire.

  • I was blessed as a child to have a potholder loom. And also these cardboard cards with holes on them that formed a picture; you ran a shoe lace through the holders and made a picture. Gateway to embroidery! I have a pot holder loom (thank you MDK) and I embroider as well as knit. But my favorite childhood graft was making a lanyard-a skill I perfected at CYO camp growing up in NYC. And thank you Billy Collins for the poem “The Lanyard”.

  • I fondly remember water colors and ink creations, oddly enough that is really the only craft that sticks in my mind…guess it was the only one I enjoyed, and I did…loved it. But now I mainly crochet and knit, sketch a tiny bit and think about beading in between.

  • During jr and senior high school years I increased my sewing skills from doll clothes to clothes for myself

  • Probably pottery was my favorite but haven’t done it since. It’s on my bucket list! Learned watercolor painting just after high school and still use that a lot! But really, I’ll try any craft!

  • In 6th grade the school let us choose our activity for the first semester (I guess until they were told we all had to have PE… ). Those of us who chose art had the best time. My mother still has the stained glass I made. That was my favorite of our lessons. I also loved making papier-mâché props for plays in our gifted class. My mother, always a crafter, also let me make tile mosaics, which I should really try again!

  • woodcarving is the craft I learned in school that I liked at the time. I’m not sure if I ever finished the project

  • A school teacher of mine gave me a counted cross stitch kit and challenged me to make it. That kicked off 10 yrs of kit making and learning to put it on clothes and bags. I still pick it up once in a while.

  • Not really art class unless you stretch the definition a bit to culinary arts. We girls — the boys got to take woodwork rather than domestic science — were enlisted to make afternoon tea for the governors’ meeting.

    I learned that to make those super-thin, crustless cucumber sandwiches you first butter the bread on the up-ended loaf then saw off your slice. Repeat for the other slice, add super-thin cucumber slices, cut off the crusts and cut the resulting sandwich in four diagonally so that the governors knew where to take their first bite.

    Many mistakes were made but we got to eat the evidence so the governors were none the wiser.

  • Had to think about this for a while. I learned how to tear tiny pieces of masking tape and attach them to a bottle. When covered, we dipped it in something? Or brushed with shoe polish? Can’t quite remember, but it came out looking like a leather covered bottle for use in I don’t remember what. Good memory huh?

  • Weaving! Not on a loom, but smaller decorative projects. The art teacher inspired all of us.

  • Does it count if it was during my school years but not learned in school? I was totally intimidated by art class, felt a failure with no clue and don’t know how much the teachers had to do with that so I won’t blame them. But I did learn to knit from my best friend in junior high. And, finally, in my advanced years (6th decade), have some confidence that there is art in me and knitting is a happy outlet for it.

  • Every summer, my grandmother would buy me a craft kit of some kind, and would teach me how to do it. I would sit for hours working on my embroidery, needlepoint, macrame, (etc whatever project she chose for me) and watch her sew. She was a seamstress and put her whole heart into the garments she made for people. She passed away before learning to knit or crochet, but I give her the credit for instilling in me the desire (and courage) to learn how to knit and crochet. I think she would have loved knitting! Here’s to you, Mama!

  • I macraméd my way through the 70’s. Wish I had those belts now (not that my waist is the same size!)

  • I learned to sew in 7th grade home ec. class. My mom loved to sew, but I didn’t want to learn from her. After that, I was able to let her help me with some projects.

  • In high school I made a 3 piece suit including pants,a jacket, and a vest. I learned to sew with wool and how to line a garment. Also we all made gym bags with a drawstring, my fabric had mushrooms on it!

  • Sewing a straight line and cooking basics!

  • I could knit before I hit school and was game to try every new craft that appeared (even unto macramé and tie-dye). Junior High introduced me, not to sewing, Mum did that years before, but to pattern drafting and “making things fit”. It was an epiphany and I never looked back. I also developed a life long love (and occasional way to make money) of/from graphic arts when I volunteered to do all the campaign posters and assorted projects connected with a friend who ran for class president, and won. Yay, Marilyn S, Class Pres, Fredericton H.S., NB, Can., 1968.

  • Ink drawing with a calligraphy pen. I had a unique looking teacher in jr high who was bald with a long beard. Totally black and white tones. It still stands as the only successful popular drawing I’ve ever done……….. might have been mistaken for a caricature but I’m sticking to my story.

  • Embroidery!

  • It’s hard to chose a favorite craft! It’s pretty much a tie between sewing and knitting. I learn each from two grandmas in my grade school years.

  • My mom was skilled in many crafts, so I learned how to sew and crochet with her when I was in 5th grade. I also enjoyed making potholders on a loom and sold them to neighbors to make extra spending money for Christmas.

  • Macrame. Worked weekend mornings, with the leg of the tv console holding down the end for me.

  • Most of my school-based art is not memorable, apparently! But I had an apple head doll phase. Somehow, an apple head doll dressed in an old-fashioned dress made of thick, sky-blue polyester came into our lives. I was pretty fascinated. Making shrunken heads from apples was, mysteriously, a skill my mom had and was happy to pass down. I remember the shrinking heads hanging on string over the sink. I think my most successful doll was a gnome.

  • Hand embroidery and sewing (mostly garments). I did them both for years, then switched to other things. I have recently picked them up again. I am currently learning (the more professional way) how to construct and fit garments. You’re never too old…

  • Thank you! I laughed out loud about the arts budget being slashed. You’re right. Some things never change.

    I made all my clothes, but underwear and jeans, in high school and college. My prom dresses were epic. Or just plain weird, depending on your taste.

  • I learned how to use a sewing machine in 7th grade home ec class. I made a simple drawstring bag and as an added bonus, learned to embroider my name on it.

  • Our 5th grade teacher taught us to crochet.

  • Back in the day, when girls were required to study Home Economics, I learned how to embroider and hand-stitch. So glad I did!

  • When my kids were small I was home a lot. In a magazine I found directions for a dried apple slice wreath with a plaid bow. It was so much fun to make! Some kind of spray varnish coated it. I kept it as long as I could before it spoiled. DH didn’t like it but I loved it!

  • first crafting memory is of melting Crayola crayon shavings between sheets of waxed paper with an iron. I was only 6 or 7 so my mother ironed them for me. Then we taped them in a window to make “stained glass”.

  • Learning how to cut out snowflakes from paper

  • I taught myself crewel work in college and made a picture for my Grandmother for Christmas.

  • I remember getting lanyard string at a summer camp I went to. They taught us how to make just about everything with the lanyard- keychains, bracelets, necklaces….

    Whatever happened to that craft? Can you still get lanyard string? Anyway, that was a fun time. I wish I could go back to the days when all I had to do was make keychains.

  • I remember learning variations of “cat’s cradle”. Some were done solo, others required a willing partner. I later learned that different forms of this are found in many cultures.

  • I was more of an outdoorsy kid than an artsy one until I fell into theatre classes in high school. I think if skulls had been involved, I would’ve been much more enthusiastic about arts & crafts in school. That said, my favorite was probably pottery, if only for the tactile sensation of working with clay with my hands. Cool, squishy stuff that can stand up to a lot of manipulation was great fun. My creations weren’t masterpieces, but the process was enjoyable.

  • I don’t remember a high school art class. I do remember my mom buying time on a loom at the local yarn shop. I still have the fabric as I couldn’t decide what to sew.

  • Needlepoint. Something to have in your hands at awkward moments.

  • When I was a teenager, I started doing counted cross stitch. I don’t remember how I discovered this craft- definitely not in school, and none of my friends did it either. But, it was something I liked doing for a number of years.

  • I can’t think of a favorite craft from school but I am totally on board for a Charles Nelson Reilly paint-by-numbers kit!

  • I love any kind of needlework. I learned in junior high. I also knit, of course. No skulls or apples.

  • We did holiday pictures with melted crayons. We used lit candles, held crayons over the flame, and then allowed the melted drop to drip onto our drawn images. Fun. I am sure it would not be allowed now due to the danger involved with fire.

  • Yeah, made an apron in Jr High Home Economics. Gingham with cross stitch trim. Not sure that inspired anyone! But fortunately I was already doing embroidery and knitting and sewing so I didn’t need encouragement.

  • Spool knitting or whatever the heck it’s called. My father made the spool. That was his project for the year! Mine was endless lengths of yarn that never got made into anything. So much for spool knitting.

  • Sewing, which became a lifelong passion

  • those little fake leather coin purses!

  • When I was in school we made Modge Podge everything! You could take the most beautiful paper designs from wrapping paper or cards and modge podge them to make paperweights, Christmas ornaments, etc.

  • I doodled all of my school life and then morphed it into much more creative and focused doodles when I discovered Zentangle.

  • I learned to knit in 6th grade and began designing my own long stocking caps that everyone wanted. A very good boyfriend trap!

  • In second grade ‘we’ made candles with melted wax and glitter poured into those milk cartons we got at lunch.

  • I think I tried all the crafts in elementary and high school; embroidery, cross stitch, macrame, spool knitting, crochet, needlepoint, sewing, and knitting and probably a few I forgot. My favorite is knitting, but I also sew regularly and do come crochet projects. There are more things I want to learn and wish I had more lifetimes. I love working with wood and would like to learn caligraphy. Stained glass. Pottery. My list is endless.

  • The only craft I remember learning in school is sewing, which I still love to do. I would love this prize!

  • I forgot about apple head dolls until this post! I think we made witches for Halloween. They were fun. I also loved doing paper mache and making a hand sewn pig pillow in home economics

  • When I was little, anything artistic came from people outside of school. A nanny taught me to hand sew, my grandmother taught me to embroider and crochet… In college, I took some drawing and painting classes, and a ceramics class – I made dice and a yatzhee cup with some leftover clay that I still have but we don’t really play anymore so it simply looks pretty on the shelf.

    I’ll be honest, I’ve never heard of dried apple dolls. DG, I need a photo!

  • papier mache doll-making (and jewelry). Dollmaking has remained a lure among crafty rabbit holes ever since. I don’t collect or make dolls, (I knit) but have learned in subsequent years how important dollmaking was among my older relatives. Some of my own baby & toddler party dresses went to clothe some of the dolls made by those many aunties who loved this craft. I feel closer to those women and the craft because of this history, in addition to my early try at it.

  • I guess you could say I was a serial art dabbler in school. From early on I took paining and drawing classes, made pot holders, popsicle log cabins, faces out of milk cartons, all kinds of doodling and then more serious lessons in calligraphy, book binding and weaving. Knitting was something my mother taught me which I picked up again about 20 years ago and I recently rekindled my interest in weaving from my college days.

  • I loved linoleum carving.

  • In the fifties, we learned a lot of crafts at public elementary school. The district art teacher came once a week, and the classroom teachers also did craft things with us. I guess my favorites that I still use were paper ornaments; we were allowed to make holiday ornaments, too.

  • I got to do an independent art project with weaving as a senior. I got to use a couple of different looms and create a tapestry. It cemented my love for fiber arts.

  • In jewelry making class I was allowed to use an acetylene gas torch to melt shards of blue glass from noxema jars. I never made them into anything but loved to watch them turn into beautiful blue blobs that then began to glow iridescent orange like opals.

  • My friend’s mom taught me to knit when I was in high school. I was a band and chorus kid so I didn’t have the opportunity to ale any art classes in high school, and I wish that had not been the case!

  • I learned how to crochet, even though I mostly knit now.

  • Sixth grade summer school we learned basket weaving! I loved it so much, but it was a pain when our allocated reeds dried out and we had to “patiently wait your turn!” until the art teacher got around to us and gave us newly-soaked replacements.

  • I learned to sew from my mother when I was a kid. She was an incredible seamstress and made couture level garments for herself. I loved having somebody comment on an outfit I was wearing knowing it was something I had made for myself. Over the years I’ve sown some of my own outfits the page has slowed me down. I still have my sewing machine but it’s back in the closet somewhere.

  • Weaving! But I did not learn it at school.My parents were both art teachers and had a lot of stuff collected over the years. Once I found a simple lap loom. I somehow learned to make a small rya rug that I turned into a over the shoulder hand bag!!

  • I learned macrame in high school art class. I became very good at making tight little uniform knots. This probably influenced my habit of knitting on the tight side. I’ve been trying to loosen up….

  • I made candles with holes in them in milk cartons. So much fun dropping in colors & then seeing how they came out when the wax was hardened enough to tear off the milk carton, but I hated burning them.

  • We made canvas shower curtains by crayon coloring. I have forgotten the specifics of setting the crayon, but it was the best. The perfect way to use up broken crayons—from “pen and ink” to abstract drawing.

  • Oh my god, I cannot stop laughing about this piece. You are so talented! (Even if apple head dolls were not chosen…)
    I didn’t take art at school, I did technical drawing. I don’t think that’s a craft, but I sure loved it for the three years a pursued it.

  • I remember learning to sew at school! Of course my mother was a big sewer so learned at home also.

  • I learned to knit and crochet in junior high school. I really didn’t have the attention span for either until I was a bit older and my kids were mostly grown. What a great thing to have home economics in school. A bit of fun thrown in with all the academics.

  • I learned to knit in high school. It has kept me sane for 60 years!

  • Who does not love paper mache

  • Wow! Speaking of apples and school budget cuts our high school was really cheap!
    In home ec we were taught to make a Faux Pie! Ritz crackers sugared and spiced as apples inside a traditional crust. Oddly tasty❤️

  • I learned knitting when I was in third grade!

  • I learned to paint in school but not well…

  • I remember finding a small kit with crewel instructions and learning how to do it myself.

  • Hasn’t eveyone made an apple head doll t some point in their lives if they live in New England

  • We never drew skulls or made dried apple head dolls,but I loved clay sculpture! My first was an odd, black glazed sort of dinosaur.

  • Friendship bracelets throw me back to 4th grade. We weren’t taught to make them at school but that’s certainly where they were made, surreptitiously taped to the underside of our desks. I’m sure it drove our teachers crazy.

  • other than learning to knit – I did all my own sewing – when I could get time on the sewing machine after my older sister!

  • In elementary school, we did embroidery using yarn on burlap. I loved learning the different stitches and I still have the decorated walrus wall hanging I made.

  • I learned to sew in high school and made many items. I have gotten away from sewing but recently got my sewing machine out and hope to use it soon!!

  • Back when I was in junior high (now called middle school), we had Home economics class. It ran the full year with one half cooking and the other half learning to sew on the sewing machine. Already being into handcrafts, I wasn’t thrilled with the machine. Years later after I had a family, the costume requests started coming ang I am really glad a few decades later I learned to sew. My most recent was a credit in my daughter’s short film for costumes.

  • My friend’s mom had a stained glass workshop in her garage and she helped me to make a flower hanging for my window.

  • I learned to crochet and see in Brownies. I started a neighborhood “club” – we met on Saturdays in my front porch and crafted together. I never did get into painting or drawing – it was all about fibers.

  • I learned to cross stitch when I was in middle school and enjoyed it. I haven’t done it in years but may pick it up again some day.

  • Sewing is a craft that I learned initially in school, and then much more, out of school. I have made things from pillow covers (including, recently, a “vomit pillow” for a theatrical production, to dance costumes, to Renaissance dresses. Along with knitting, seeing is my preferred hobby.

  • Not exactly a craft, but square dancing. I loved it and luckily it was part of the p.e. program and compulsory, so I didn’t have to be a nerd to do it. I was a nerd anyway. I also crocheted a vest that I actually wore.

  • Tie Dye – shirts mostly – fun!

  • In 1st grade I remember drawing a picture of a tree and decorating it with tiny pieces of tissue paper for the fall leaves. We used the erasers on our pencils to pick up the little tissue squares, dip them in glue, and then twist them on to the page to give them a crinkly leafy look. It was very much a craft for 6 year olds, but I loved how satisfying it was crinkling up those little squares with my soft but firm eraser.

  • In 7th grade home economics class I sewed a gathered cotton skirt with matching boxy top. My mother had already inspired me during previous years. She sewed most of of my clothing & my dolls as well. Her skill in knitting was excellent also. Thank you, Mom!

  • During my school years I was huge into embroidery. I still use one of the dishtowels I made, a sweet little Mouse with an Apron.

  • Palmer method cursive writing. I loved it all and one teacher showed us how to use real fountain pens! I still have handwriting that causes people to comment. Love it!

  • Embroidery. I never finished the original pillowcase doll, but I sure did fall in love with painting with thread!

  • I did lots of drawing and pen and ink. But the “craftiest” thing I did was collect small, smooth beach stones and paint them with flowers.