Arts & Crafts (& Projects & Fleas)

Spring is a great time for projects. There’s that wonderful sense of renewal all around us. The snow has melted, buds have started to appear on the trees, the sunshine is just that much warmer, and the days are longer. And longer days mean more hours to fill. And more hours to fill means time to brush off the old toolkit. It’s time to get crafty!

40 Projects for Building your Backyard Homestead

Not sure where to start? Need some inspiration? The library has you covered. Our shelves are filled with great books that run the gamut of crafty, thrifty, creative, and/or sustainable projects. From DIY furniture upcycling, and raising backyard chickens (against the law in Winnipeg but a romantic concept to explore, nonetheless) with 40 projects for building your backyard homestead: a hands-on, step-by-step sustainable-living guide by David Thot, to reinventing your wardrobe with New Dress a Day by Marissa Lynch.

Handmade Gatherings


Having a party? Check out Handmade Gatherings by Ashley English; or try getting your hands dirty with Concrete Crafts by Sania Hedengren. Embroidery and other domestic pursuits can be found in The Gentle Art of Domesticity by Brocket, Jane. There is no shortage of ways to explore your crafty side through the library!

Are you working on a tight schedule? Are there not enough hours in the day to make it in person to the library? Just between you and me, the WPL’s Freading eBook catalogue has an excellent selection of nonfiction books on crafting, homesteading, gardening, and much, much more. Best of all, they’re all immediately ready for download, not a waitlist in sight!

Made by Dad

Spending time with the kids this summer will never be quite the same once you get your hands on Made by Dad by Scott Bedford which is full of fun projects, small and large, that you can make with materials you’ve likely already got lying around the home. When the rain starts to pour, pull those kids away from the screens with Instead of watching TV: 99 activities to help kids unplug by Anna Huete.

If you, like many, consider yourself to be a non-crafty person but still enjoy the idea of the handmade, self-sustaining, made-with-love movement have no fear! Fortunately, we have many capable, highly skilled, and supremely talented crafters right here in Manitoba with many calling Winnipeg home. The truth to this statement is easily confirmed by the sheer number of craft sales that take place throughout the year. Take, for example, this weekend: the Winnipeg Etsy Street Team hosts its seventh Handmade and Vintage Sale (Saturday, May 2) while Third and Bird Market is hosting its 2nd Annual Spring Market from 10-5 (also Saturday, May 2—make a day of it, perhaps?).

Lastly, keep your eyes open, adults and children alike, for the great variety of makerspace programming that the library hosts year round. And don’t forget — you crafty library lovers — that the Knitting Book Clubs at Louis Riel and Fort Garry Library resume their meetings in the fall. Contact your local branch to find out more information regarding these unique, free programs!

What’s your craft of choice?


2 responses to “Arts & Crafts (& Projects & Fleas)

  1. Patricia Ramlal

    Could you please tell me more about the knitting book club at the Fort Garry Library?


  2. It’s called the Knit Lit Book Club – Meets at Fort Garry Library on a Tuesday at 6:30 pm. (Call 204-986-4918 for dates and to register). The description: “A book club for knitters! Each month we will meet to discuss our experiences knitting items from our great variety of knitting pattern books. Pick a book, choose a pattern, and share your creations!”

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