SERIOUSLY FUN SPOTS TO GET CRAFTY IN THE SMOKIES
Make-it-yourself opportunities in Sevierville, Tennessee
At any age there’s satisfaction in being able to say, “I made it myself!” Don’t think of yourself as a skilled artist? No problem! With expert guidance your project will be a success—plus a whole lot of hands-on fun in the process. Whether you want to make something to keep or to give away as a gift, opportunities to roll up your sleeves and release your inner artiste abound in Sevierville, Tennessee. Here are just a few places to get creative:
The Cherry Pit is a quilter’s haven where you can find all the supplies you need to make a quilt, from over 4,000 bolts of fabric to thread, pattern books, and ready-to-go kits. The store also hosts classes throughout the year, including one- and two-day classes where you’ll complete a smaller project like a table runner or get a good head start on a bigger project like a throw blanket along with all the information necessary to finish it at your leisure. Classes cost $15 plus the price of the featured kit which typically ranges from $35 to $100, depending on the size of the finished piece.
KaTom Restaurant Supply, Inc. is a restaurant-quality supply store—ranked as one of the nation’s top 25 such companies—that stocks over 130,000 pieces of equipment and supplies. Cooking classes led by local and regional professional chefs are held in the demonstration kitchen and cover a range of topics to help you gain skills and confidence in the culinary arts. Classes are typically offered twice a month on Thursdays for two to three hours depending on the topic. Getting to eat what is prepared during class is one reward of attending. Cooking demonstration classes are $45.
My Painting Party at Art House Studios gives you control of the paintbrush while an instructor guides you step-by-step through the process of completing the canvas. No art skills or experience necessary to succeed in these fun and relaxing workshops that are appropriate for all ages (though some ladies nights and adult only paint and sip classes are also on the calendar). You’ll complete a painting in one session.
Orvis Sevierville offers free fly-tying classes for beginners. On Saturdays from 10:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., come to the store’s fishing department and learn to tie a wooly booger and green weenie, plus from one to four additional flies as time permits. Classes include all supplies and fly-tying instruction, and you’ll walk away with your handmade ties ready to go hook trout. Register for classes on the website. First timers are welcome, no specific skills or previous experience necessary.
Polka Dot Pots is a paint-your-own pottery and ceramics studio located inside Wilderness at the Smokies. Choose a blank piece from a huge assortment that includes plates, mugs, banks, spoon rests, boxes, figurines, vases, and more, then start personalizing it with paint. More than 80 different colors and three types of paint are available, from solid to opaque, including food-safe standard and specialty glazes as well as display-only acrylics. If you want to replicate a design—whether it’s an example on display or something you saw on Pinterest—instructors will help step by step. Prices range from $8 to $150 with most medium-size plates and bowls averaging $25. The studio opens to the public daily at 9 a.m. and all pieces completed before 4 p.m. will be fired overnight and ready to pick-up the next day. If you need to leave town, your work can be shipped for $10.
Scrapbook Superstore is a family-owned store that sells everything you need to artfully preserve your photos, certificates, ticket stubs, and other memorabilia, as well as make cards and other paper crafts. A clearance area under the same roof sells an impressive selection of scrapbook supplies at 50 percent off. In-store classes range from one-hour projects like handmade cards to all-day projects like an album. Depending on the project, prices range from free to $5 and up to $50. For up-to-date information about classes and events check the store’s Facebook page.
Visit Sevierville and you can walk away with memories plus a hand-crafted souvenir.