Aldona Bird, Editorial Author

Crafts can cure winter blues

It is cabin fever time of year. Myself, I’ve been feeling antsy while at home and feel the new crafting project itch coming on.

A chat with Holly Groves Hartsell about her crafting classes proved just the thing on a cloudy and muddy day. We talked about how we often buy supplies for a new project and either don’t get around to it or complete the craft but end up with leftover supplies.

This common problem is part of why Holly enjoys teaching Create and Take classes at her home studio in Reedsville. She started offering a variety of classes last October: Coffee filter- and other types of wreath making; a paint and sip; and other craft classes. Class participants complete a project with materials supplied, and no leftovers!

“I feel like crafting is a way to express yourself artistically, without a huge investment,” Holly said, noting that her art form of choice to work in is sculpture, but she doesn’t have space or equipment, so she expresses her creativity through other types of arts and crafting projects.

Holly likes trying new projects. An art teacher in local public schools for 10 years and a local paint and sip teacher, she uses the same techniques for teaching kids and adults.

Her Create and Take classes give her scope to try new projects that she just thinks are fun.

For the coffee filter wreath project, she bought the supplies but needed the motivation of teaching others to complete the wreath. She said teaching these classes, “gives me an excuse to buckle down and try [new ideas].”

This particular one was a hit.

“People got really creative with it,” she said. She also offered a very popular wooden quilt square class. This was the Create and Take class I remember noticing on Facebook, and I thought it looked like a ton of fun.

Holly has an acrylic pour class coming up Feb. 21 and said she plans to do a spring wreath class, and an Easter porch sign class as well.

Students who sign up for Create and Take classes can expect to see an example of the finished project at the beginning of class. Holly said she then either talks everyone through making the craft, or demonstrates as she explains.

Holly tries to make an un-intimidating atmosphere for classes and tries to keep them affordable and so accessible to as many as possible. She holds them in her finished garage, which has a sink, bathroom, and table set up. She would also like to rent her space for creative children’s birthday parties.

“I really like doing things in our community,” Holly said. She added that she is happy to offer a fun, relaxing, family-friendly activity in Preston County.

I hope to attend some birthday parties in this new space. I’ve had to drive to Morgantown for parties at the Wow Factory and other locations, and think a local option is a huge benefit to our community.

An option close to home for any recreation is a win in my books, but one involving crafting is a double win.

So before you try to beat the rainy and muddy winter blues by running to a craft store for a bunch of new supplies (although if you do go that route, please invite me along because shopping for craft supplies is one of my favorite hobbies), check out what Holly has coming up via Facebook or by emailing her at

ALDONA BIRD is a journalist, previously writing for The Dominion Post. She explores possibilities of local productivity and sustainable living in Preston County.