Exploring “The Restorative Power of Craft,” Preservation Pasadena, and a Virtual Crafts Show

by Kate Nixon

October 10th, 2020 – this article has been revised to include the Virtual Craft Fair from the Southern Highland Craft Guild. 


This week brings a bevy of new online classes, tours and opportunities for the virtual student in all of us. The Stickley Museum at Craftsman Farms has just released the topic of their latest series of Zoom courses “The Restorative Power of Craft” using ceramic enterprises to focus on the concept of craft as a healing agent. A well known Asheville organization also is going virtual this Thursday with a craft guild show offering demonstrations, a raffle and plenty of artisans to shop from, but first…Pasadena Heritage kicked off their yearly celebration, now virtual, last weekend and Preservation Pasadena continues this week with special presentations, a keynote presentation, artist meet and greets, and even a live happy hour complete with martinis. We’re all for happy hours these days! Keep reading to find out how you can sign up for a week of amazing online opportunities.


Preservation Pasadena – November 6-15, 2020

Meeting artists over Zoom, a live tour of the furniture of the iconic Gamble House, making martinis and answering trivia questions, and watching the virtual Dr. Robert Winter Memorial Lecture – these are just a few events lined up for this week and upcoming weekend that you can buy tickets to!



This week, the team at Pasadena Heritage continues their 10-day celebration Preservation Pasadena: Craftsman to Modern, a virtual exploration of architectural style and design, including that of the Arts and Crafts Movement. While the full schedule is up on the website, https://pasadenaheritage.org/preservationpasadena/, this week will have plenty of opportunities to learn virtually about California’s Arts and Crafts past and present. Each of these individual presentations requires the purchase of a ticket, unless users purchase an events pass: $138 for members and $175 for nonmembers. Pasadena Heritage membership can also be purchased. See the aforementioned website for prices and for purchasing tickets.
November 10th and November 12th
Live Social: Meet and Greet the Artists and Experts
5:00 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. PST

Pasadena Heritage invites you to meet creative craftspeople and experts from around the country who specialize in antique and contemporary furnishings and decorative arts in the spirit of the Arts & Crafts Movement.

Tuesday, November 10th
Live: A Century of Stickley at the Gamble House
6:30 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. PDT

The Gamble House is noted for its priceless collection of furniture designed by Greene & Greene. Stickley furniture, however, was always present to supplement these pieces, and plays an important role in the presentation of the house’s interiors today. An insider’s look will be presented live from The Gamble House by Jennifer Trotoux, the Director of Collections and Interpretation.

Wednesday November 11th
A Woodworker’s Journey: Discovering Sam Maloof
Pre-recorded event. Link active through November 15th.

In this 90-minute, pre-recorded, online exploration of the life and times of Sam and Alfreda Maloof by the not-for-profit Sam and Alfreda Maloof Foundation for Arts and Crafts. Viewers learn of the essential role played by Pasadena-born artist Alfreda Ward who, as Mrs. Maloof, first advocated establishment of the Maloof workshop, which she shaped and managed for nearly half a century.

Saturday November 14th
Live: Making Martinis with The Raymond 1886
5:00 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. PDT

Pasadena Heritage invites you to gather for a fun, social virtual Happy Hour where you will learn from a professional bartender from the historic Raymond 1886 bar how to make the perfect martini – dry, wet, shaken or stirred. Interspersed throughout the evening will be fun and challenging trivia questions about the old Raymond Hotel, Dr. Winter, and our featured speaker for this year’s Dr. Robert Winter Memorial lecture, John Brinkmann, founder and publisher of American Bungalow magazine.

Dr. Robert Winter Memorial Lecture featuring John Brinkmann
6:30 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.

American Bungalow’s founder and publisher, John Brinkmann, will be the featured speaker at Pasadena Heritage’s second-annual Dr. Robert Winter Memorial Lecture. Mr. Brinkmann, another pioneer in the revival of the Craftsman Movement, presents his thoughts as a continuing tribute to the late Dr. Winter, known to many as “Bungalow Bob,” renowned architectural historian, critic, author and teacher.


You can purchase tickets to each event by clicking on the Preservation Pasadena website.


The Restorative Power of Craft – starting November 14th

The latest virtual classroom series from the Stickley Museum at Craftsman Farms


From artists and craftspeople to enthusiasts and supporters of the Arts and Crafts Movement, the need to create a piece of work and the need to view and appreciate those creations is widely understood. In challenging times, artists and craftspeople have long been able to heal through the act of creation – and it is this idea that will propel the last virtual series of 2020 from the Stickley Museum at Craftsman Farms. Through looking at the ceramic enterprises Marblehead Pottery, Van Briggle Pottery, Arequipa Pottery, and Saturday Evening Girls, Director of Collections and Preservation Jonathan Clancy and Executive Director Vonda Givens will examine “The Restorative Power of Craft.”

Instructor Clancy describes the class:

“It seems fitting that as we end what can be objectively described as a difficult year–with a contentious political season culminating in an election, a worldwide pandemic that has upended our ideas of normalcy, and more prolonged and shared suffering than any period in recent memory–that we focus on the Restorative Power of Craft.  Shared throughout the early 20th century, there was a belief that craft, the very act of making, could serve (As Eloise Roorbach noted in The Craftsman) as a “tonic” for the most fragile among us, bringing the craftsperson renewed health, financial security, and spiritual solace.  Over the course of four weeks, we will explore this powerful idea through a closer look at a number of ceramic enterprises, hoping that we uncover the urgency of restoration and spiritual solace in our own times by examining the ways this was practiced in the past.”

As mentioned above by Clancy, it does seem fitting to end the year by exploring the healing powers of creating a work — and according to Executive Director Givens, that idea will hit home for many. “Of all the classes we have offered in 2020, this one may be the most timely,” says Givens. “Like most Arts and Crafts fans, I am familiar with the works and histories of Marblehead, Van Briggle, Arequipa and Saturday Evening Girls, but I’m looking forward to delving deeper into the context for their operations, considering them as a group and most of all, reflecting on the ways their era may speak to our time.”

The first class starts November 14th titled “Working Their Way Back to Health: Marblehead Pottery” explores the famous pottery name, initially led by Arthur Baggs as part of a “broader experiment to use the handicrafts therapeutically as a ‘work cure’ to alleviate the nervous ailments of modern life.”

The upcoming class is $25 per session and will be held over the Zoom platform.

For more information or to register, click here to go to the website of the Stickley Museum at Craftsman Farms.


The 73rd Fall Edition Craft Fair of the Southern Highland Craft Guild

November 12-15th

The Virtual Fairs recreate the craft experience online through live streams, craft demonstrations, and online booths where visitors can shop directly from artists. This page will go live with links to artist websites at midnight, on the eve of November 12th. In fact a few of our well known friends to the conference, Brian Brace of Brian Brace Fine Furniture, Tom Reardon and Kathleen Doyle, and Amy Brandenburg will be offering live demonstrations over their social media accounts. Check out the schedule by clicking the link below.

Offering virtual shows, a livestream schedule, and a raffle starting this Thursday and running through this weekend, there is plenty to see, learn, and shop!

Click here to visit the Virtual Craft Fair of the Southern Highland Craft Guild – Thursday, November 12th – Sunday, November 15th!