A couple months ago, one of my friends mentioned that I should host a craft night again. She still had the fabric flower we had made a few years ago at a craft night and said that she really enjoyed the time sitting and visiting with other women while making something. I also have been listening to Quilt Fiction's "Friendship Album:1933" and thinking of how fun it would be to have a weekly quilting/making bee. But in truth, a weekly gathering would be too much for my schedule. A monthly gathering sounds more manageable, but in all honesty I know that it could easily become overwhelming. So, I came to the conclusion that I would set a goal to host four craft nights during the remainder of this year, essentially one every other month.
After picking a date, I sent out invites to various friends and neighbors. I thought it would be fun to get a mix of ladies from different circles. Once the invitations had been issued (by text...I was aiming to keep this simple!), I had to decide what we would make. I wanted an easy craft that could be completed in evening, used items I had on hand, and could be scaled up or down based on how many women were able to attend. After searching online, I came across this cute Easter bunny mason jar craft on Crafts by Amanda . I have dozens of mason jars from canning, so the only craft supply I truly had to buy was the chalk paint. I made use of a couple of 40% off coupons for Joann Fabric and Crafts and chose two spring colors.
I baked a pan of brownies and set out the craft supplies. It really was as simple as that. No, it didn't look like the beautiful set ups I saw on Pinterest for hosting a Ladies Craft Night. I didn't have themed snacks or decorations for the craft supply table. While I am sure that would have looked nice, I didn't want to spend my energy stressing over those sorts of details. That wasn't the point of the evening. My purpose for the evening was one where women could set aside any stresses of the week and just hang out. To relax. A chance to deepen relationships and build community. Making a craft was a bonus. It kept our hands busy while we talked.
And that is exactly what we did. The evening was spent around my dining room table with a lovely group of ladies. We laughed, shared stories about our families, and ate too many jellybeans. We talked way past when we had actually finished our crafts. The craft night was exactly what I had hoped it would be, and I am already looking forward to the next one.
I'm thankful for the prompting of a friend to host a craft night. It was just the kick I needed to actually write a night in on the calendar and move forward. It seems that too often we don't move past the "we should"...have a craft night, have so-and-so over for dinner, host a game night, or any other number of worthwhile plans. It takes intentionally writing it on the calendar and sending out the invites. From there, keep it simple. If it's another family over for dinner, order pizza. If it's a game night, have everyone invited bring their favorite games and pop some popcorn. Feel like your home is too small to host folks over? Meet up at a nearby park. The point is to build community with those around you, not to have the most Pinterest-worthy snacks and decor. Save your energy for building relationships.
Think through your circles of relationships. Who will you be inviting over next?