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Makers Morning

February 3rd, 2022

Free More Info

Thursday Mornings
9:30 AM - 12:30 PM

Join other makers and crafters weekly at the Ely Folk School for a relaxed morning of creativity and sharing. Whether you crochet, quilt, solder, write, or weave, any project is welcome. This space is also excellent for students who did not finish a project during their class.

All are welcome, no matter skill level or (reasonable) project type. As we enter the darker months of winter, a space to share projects and work in a community setting are important! Drop in whenever as you like, for as long as you like. 

Our equipment is available for you to use and select materials are available for purchase. You must clean and return any equipmemnt used. Registration is not required, but welcomed. 

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Date Night Pottery for Singles

with Nina Wray

February 11th, 2022

$55 More Info

Friday, February 10, 2022
6:00 PM - 8:00 PM

Tuition: $35  Materials: $20

Come ready to mix, mingle, & get a little dirty ;) 2 hours to play with clay, meet other Ely singles, & enjoy an appetizer & drinks. Come alone or bring a friend. Participants will have the opportunity to try their hand at handbuilding as well as wheel throwing with clay, while enjoying charcuterie and wine. A NA option will also be available. 

Finished work will be available for pickup at the Folk School February 19th or can be shipped to you at an additional cost.

Must be 21 or older.

About the Instructor: Nina Wray is the potter behind Moon Dog Studio and one of the Ely Folk School Ceramics studio coordiniators. "My first memory of doing pottery was in kindergarten. I made a lumpy yellow coil cup, which my parents kept as a pen holder for years. My love of pottery truly developed when I was in high school. I was lucky enough to go to a school with a solid art program & two pottery studio classrooms. I took every pottery class they offered & even coaxed the teachers into a term as a Teachers Assistant & another doing Independent Study. I dreamed of the day I’d drive around the country, touring craft fairs, with my loyal dog in the passenger seat. Somewhere along the road my love of travel & the outdoors took over. The transient nature of my career in experiential education made it difficult to pursue my pottery interests. More than a decade later, I have circled back to my first dream job, as a potter. Now I spend most days working in my basement studio while my loyal dog lazes happily on the couch."

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Create Paper Collages

with Cecilia Rolando

February 4th, 2022

$35 More Info

Friday, February 4, 2022
1:00 PM - 3:30 PM

Tuition: $25  Materials: $10

Combine paints, inks, and paper to create a collage. Make a wall hanging, greeting card, journal pages, or whatever strikes your fancy.

Cecilia will offer inspiration and guidance for themed or eclectic pieces of work and share some of her recent work. 

About the Instructor: Area artist Cecilia Rolando returns to the Ely Folk School to teach a series of classes of art techniques that interest her. She will focus on collaging for this class, with the emphasis, as always, on allowing the students to use their own creativity in applying the information she provides regarding the techniques involved.

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Sustainable Living

with Andy Hill

February 2nd, 2022

Free More Info

Wednesday, February 2, 2021
6:00 PM - 7:30 PM 

Free! These sessions will be held the first Wednesday of each month October through February. 

Ever wonder how you might make a positive difference to sustainable living but haven't known where to start? Well, you're in luck! Join a community of green-minded folk in discussing creative ways to live a cleaner lifestyle. Come think with us each month as we ponder and peruse the state of the world and our own impacts. Although individual actions alone cannot solve the climate crisis, we can join together and share both our cost-effective and even cost-free ways to lessen our footprint and discuss our questions and frustrations. Fostering contagious ideas is a wonderful way to create positive progress. The longest journey starts with a single step. 

Topics each month will be based largely on current events, attendee questions, and seasonal opportunities. We ask you all to come with both a question about sustainability and an idea or a choice you have made toward a more sustainable future, be it about installing solar or saving your garden seeds! 

About the facilitator: Andy Hill, of Northland Builders and EcoEly, has been implementing creative sustainable living practices in his off-the-grid homestead and loves to share ideas and knowledge with others. He has been called an Evangelist of Sustainability and he promises there will be no secrets! Andy has taught Sustainable Living classes and Northwoods Gardening at the Folk School since its inception, and students appreciate his deep knowledge as a gardener and his positive and helpful teaching style.

So, come engage with Andy and meet some new friends!

Think globally, act locally. 

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Linoleum Print Patches

with Nora Rickey

February 10th, 2022

$61 More Info

Thursday, February 5, 2021
5:00 PM - 8:00 PM

Sliding Scale Class Fee:
Supporting: $81  Standard: $61  Sustained: $41
Prices include a $25 materials fee. 
Please call to register. 

Students will learn how to carve a 4”x6” linoleum block to create prints and patches. Students will learn which fabric and inks are best for printing on fabric versus on paper. If you’ve ever wanted to create multiple works of wearble art, this is a good place to begin! 

Linoleum printing is a long practiced art form, in which you cut a design into the linoleum before printing it with ink. We will explore working with both fabric and paper. We encourage you to use the prints you make on fabric for mending your worn clothes! 

About the Instructor, Nora Rickey: I am a self taught visual artist and educator living in Minnesota. Raised in an artistic household and trained in NYC, I came into my visual arts practice when I moved back to the sweet Midwest. Here, I began exploring and teaching myself different fiber arts skills and incorporating them into my work. Whether a hidden secret or on full display, I love to create pieces that transform the wearer into art. 

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Stained Glass Studio

with Betty Firth

February 14th, 2022

$148 More Info

Mondays, February 14, 21, and 28, 2022
2:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Tuition: $108  Materials: $40

The age-old craft of stained glass continues to fascinate and delight us with the interactions of color, light, and design. This class is open to beginners as well as those with some experience. Beginners are encouraged to choose a simple design or pattern with a focus on learning well the techniques of cutting patterns, scoring glass, copper foiling, soldering, finishing, and framing with zinc came. 

Experienced students may choose a pattern, work with their own design, or bring a project that has been sidelined and is yearning to be completed. Basic techniques of using lead came with appropriate designs will be introduced. Instruction will be individualized based on students’ experience and skills. Everyone will have the opportunity to complete a project during a 3-week session or choose to work on a larger project over the course of ongoing studio sessions. Students are also welcome to work independently on their projects during Maker Mornings on Thursdays from 9:30 to 12:30. 

All the tools, supplies, and safety glasses will be provided. If you regularly wear glasses, please bring them. The materials fee will cover one piece approximately 12” x 12” or two smaller pieces. Additional glass and materials are available for purchase for larger or additional pieces.

This class has scholarship seats available for youth and members of the Northern Lights Clubhouse. Please call to inquire about eligibility and availablity! 

Please do not wear scented personal products to class due to chemical sensitivities. 

About the instructor: Betty Firth loves an abundance of colors and light and surrounds herself with as much of each whenever she can. Stained glass combines the beauty of both with unending, delightful possibilities. Betty has also indulged her love of color and craft working with pottery, fabric collages, weaving, beading, and watercolor painting.

Betty has taught many subjects to students from six years old to 90 and always enjoys the opportunity to open up new worlds to students.

This activity is made possible in part by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the Arrowhead Regional Arts Council, thanks to appropriations from the Minnesota State Legislature's general and arts and cultural heritage funds.

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Saturdays, February 12, 19, 26 & March 5, 2022
2:00 PM - 4:00 PM

Tuition: $100  Materials: $70  Shipping: $17

This class builds on technique learned in Laura's Intro to Tapestry Weaving class. Students who have taken Level 1 or Level 2 are eligible for the class. 

Ready to practice your new tapestry weaving skills and apply them to a beautiful scenery piece?  “Canoe Trip” is a great Level 1 skill builder that combines techniques from Laura’s course like hills and valleys, soumak, coal mining, and more to create this lovely Northwoods image. The kit comes with beautifully hand dyed wool from her farm’s sheep and a lovely felt mounting board with wooden pins for showing off your finished work.  Practice good technique, enjoy the community of weavers, and advance your skills with this four-part class with Laura.

About the Instructor: Laura Berlage is a contemporary Renaissance woman living and working on her family’s century-old homestead farm outside Hayward, WI. From fiber arts to creative writing, music to storytelling, she never tires of the magic of transforming ideas into form and overlapping narrative and visual.

Laura also loves working with the many and beautiful natural materials from her farm—especially the wool from her sheep. Completing her MFA in Interdisciplinary Arts at Goddard College in 2011, Laura continues her lifelong passion for learning with engaged, hands-on teaching for small groups to encourage creativity, imagination, and expression.

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Natural Dyes: Avocado Pits

with Nora Rickey

February 3rd, 2022

$34 More Info

Thursday, February 3, 2022
6:00 PM - 8:00 PM

Sliding Scale Price Structure: 
Supporting: $45  Standard: $34  Sustained: $23

These prices include a $10 materials fee. 

Give your food waste a new life! 

Did you know that many foods and plants found in our kitchens and gardens can be transformed into dye? This class will focus on using avocado skins and pits to create a beautiful millennial pink dye. 

You'll learn about which fabrics and yarns are best, how to prepare the fabric and the dyestuffs, and altering your dye color with household materials! 

Please bring cotton fabric you'd like to dye and your evening beverage of choice. 

The Ely Folk School is excited to announce a sliding scale pricing structure for select classes in 2022! We recognize that not all our class prices are accessible for our whole community, and this system allows folks to choose how much they pay for a class. Using a sliding scale helps us work toward our belief in economic justice and accessibility of folk education. 

Currently, classes are chosen for the sliding scale by instructor choice. Instructors, if you would like to learn more or volunteer your class, please contact us!

About the Instructor, Nora Rickey: I am a self taught visual artist and educator living in Minnesota. Raised in an artistic household and trained in NYC, I came into my visual arts practice when I moved back to the sweet Midwest.  Here, I began exploring and teaching myself different fiber arts skills and incorporating them into my work. Whether a hidden secret or on full display, I love to create pieces that transform the wearer into art.

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Saturday, February 5, 2022
1:00 PM - 4:00 PM

Tuition: $36  Materials: $30

There is no materials fee if you bring all your own wood and supplies. Call before paying if you'd like to move forward with this option. 

This is an opportunity for students in the introductory carving class to deepen their skills and their carving! Students are also welcome who have been carving on their own and would like to improve their skills. Instructor Ken Baasi will show you how to create three-dimensional carvings highlighting the diamonds in the willow like fine sculptures. 

Bring cut-resistant gloves and any tools you may have such as knives, gouges, riffler rasps and sandpaper. Ken will supply enough carving knives for students, but if you want to purchase your own, he recommends shopping at Piragis and getting the flex-cut brand of carving tools.

Ken is also offering a class in the morning which will encompass carving basics as well as harvesting and peeling the diamond willow. 

About the instructor: Ken Baasi has been studying and practicing carving for years and loves revealing diamond willow's beauty. He enjoys sharing his knowledge and skills and wishes to inspire people who are genuinely interested.

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Intro to Chip Carving

with Bart Dunning

February 12th, 2022

$80 More Info

Saturday, February 12, 2021
12:30 PM - 5:00 PM 

Tuition: $55  Materials: $25

Chip carving is a very old craft practiced by many cultures. The patterns we typically see are based on Northern European tradition. This is an art form that almost anyone can practice. It just requires patience and a steady hand. Chip carving generally consists of a set of triangular cuts layed-out in regular, geometric patterns, but can be more free form, as in lettering and pictures. You will receive a sharp knife, the key to safety and ease of carving, and you will learn how to handle and care for the knife. You will learn to lay out a pattern for cutting, how to make the various cuts and as you develop a feel for the wood, you will learn how to deal with mistakes. You will leave with some new skills and, hopefully, a carved coaster.

About the instructor: Bart Dunning has done various woodworking activities for decades. He has built some furniture, and done some 3D carving as well as relief carving. About 20 years ago he ran across a book about chip carving and decided to give it a try. He has since chip carved numerous items ranging from little coasters to larger trivets and signs. Bart taught physiology for a number of years at several medical schools. He currently teaches skiing at Buck Hill in Burnsville, chip carving at Marine Mills Folk School, and demonstrates chip carving at the Dakota City Heritage Village at the Dakota County fairgrounds.