Cassie Jones – Crafts and Textiles – Group 2, Round 2 Awardee
Building and installing weather protected receptacles to middle man between donors and users of art.
Our community is filled with creatives! Filled with people that like to create with seed beads one week, and hemp string the next, resin casting one season and basket weaving the following. Creative people tend to collect supplies, so it’s common to clear out unwanted items to make space for new materials. This mass amount of craft supply turnover forces valuable items into landfills. Providing a place for people to easily give and take art supplies will be a huge resource to any neighborhood. Creating these booths, that I’m calling SuppLybrarys, will provide a place for crafters to easily unload their unwanted supplies 24 hours a day. In turn it will also be providing those same supplies for free to anyone who can use them, 24 hours a day.
Three times a year I have been teaming up with The Black Cat Tavern on 12th Street in South Philadelphia to host Free Art and Supply Swaps. People drop off things they don’t need and pick up anything they do. These events have always been highly attended, with 50 or more people coming through to drop and collect supplies at each event. It’s such a great surprise to see something useful in a pile of FREE art supplies! At the end of the events I have been taking the remaining supplies (with barely enough room in a 4 door prius) to my house to redistribute to teachers and anyone who could use it. The community always needs it, I never hang onto it for long.
With this project I will be able to handpick from the supply swaps for items commonly donated like yarn and fabric. I will plan all ages projects using these items, make kits and distribute them along with project instructions to all SuppLybrarys. I’ll post on socials with project drops, encourage Philadelphians to go snag something fun to make, and full circle involve the community. Full circle community engagement is why I would like to push the internet presence of this project. By creating a landing page with a map of the SuppLybrarys, social media accounts, and building a mailing list, we will have many accessible forms of involvement.
Having a SuppLybrary in my neighborhood would mean that a 2nd grade teacher at Harriety Elementary can stop by and pick up free glue sticks on her way into school. It will mean that a stay at home mom with 3 kids can pickup a box of crayons and coloring book for each of her kids to play with that very afternoon. Installing a SuppLybrary in this neighborhood will allow the 75 year old retiree down the block to start a new hobby of knitting so he can make hats for the homeless. It will provide a little extra joy to anyone who opens it’s doors. With the extra step of assembling monthly project packs, free group craft events, and sharing creative opportunities with the community, there are a lot of added bonuses to this project.