Plant Bags!

A pair of our Creation Station makers created burlap bags for their plants!

Here are some links if you’re looking for a little something to contain a plant as it grows and needs more space, or until you can get it in the ground, or perhaps as something to spice up a pot inexpensively and stylishly:

Sewing landscape fabric bags: 

Consider using burlap if you’ve got it inexpensively or prefer it. Here are some tips on working with burlap:

If you’re aiming for pretty, here are a couple of other resources:

If you’re not sure why, then here’s The Wisconsin Vegetable Gardener talking about starting and raising plants in burlap:

Image result for burlap plant bags



“Life Hacks”

Have you heard of the term “life hacks?”

I first heard it a few years ago. I understand life hacks to be morsels of advice that promise to bring ingenuity to your everyday and make change smoother and more approachable.Life Hack Meme.jpg

Makerspaces, like the one at SSCLibrary, are all about life hacks in the sense that they empower you to improve something you otherwise thought would require outside resources such as money or other people’s expertise and vision. Makerspaces exemplify: your vision is valuable, your time and ingenuity are enough.

If you’d like to go surf the life hacks topic, then take a look at I think I would if I came across it outside of work. What other websites do you find with tasteful tips and tricks to improve your lifestyle?

Also, Know Your Meme offers some history about the phrase “life hacks” here.


What Makes Good Recording/Mixing Equipment?

We want to hear from you! Whoever you are…

We’ve got a few vocal microphones, GarageBand, and a Tascam Linear PCM Recorder… but we want to know: what makes a good compact DIY recording studio? What would be ideal for a public library to have?

Any tips on soundproofing? I hear some schools are having kids do recordings using little soundproof boxes to minimize the crazy hectic aspect of having a class record reflective thought all at the same time. Maybe people would like that in a library!

Contrast Paintings

Check out the awesome contrast artwork Kayla did with a Pathways group!

Contrast Painting with Pathways

If you want to try it at home, you’ll likely want:

  • Paper/surface to be painted
  • Red, yellow, and blue paint
  • Strips of paper
  • Wash rags or paper towels
  • Optional: paint brushes (otherwise finger-painting)

Place the strips of paper however you like on the surface to be painted. Then paint over the entire thing before pealing up the strips. See how striking the contrast is between the bright colors and the color of your paper or “canvas.”

Optional: decorate your painting with paper cut-outs, glitter, or stickers!

Stencils Experience

Yesterday, a patron and I worked on making stencils! She brought in 0.007 stencil plastic which we realized must be measured in inches because the Cricut has a stencil film at 0.4mm and 0.007 would be insanely thin. We looked online at a couple of reviews of the plastic and went ahead with the 0.4mm stencil film setting with a regular, recently-changed fine-point blade.

Good news, it cut through fairly consistently. Challenge: think in stencils. This patron was converting a stamp image to a stencil and if you think about it really, really hard then you might see what I’m trying to illustrate with the As below. Stamps can accommodate closed shapes within closed shapes whereas stencils cannot. In other words, stamps can be moats or donuts, but stencils have draw bridges.

Here’s a tiger that’s pretty close to being a good stencil, but you could get some practice spotting the stamp-like spots and where draw bridges could fit into the design in order to make it really work as a stencil.


Notice how this tiger does not have an outline, but you can see its shape by its stripes.
1st a: closed shape within a closed shape versus 2nd a: single closed shape.




One Day Builds

If you haven’t seen… Adam Savage’s Tested: One Day Builds, then I thoroughly recommend them. These builds are a little more than we do in our makerspace–much more suited to a master’s workshop–however, they are fantastic and delightful entertainment and inspiration!

Adam Savage Tested One Day Builds.JPG

Here are a few more approachable builds for a makerspace such as ours:

  1. Common school-time builds
  2. Instructables cardboard armor recipe
  3. How to sew a tool roll or jewelry pouch

One person inspired by #OneDayBuilds made a med-kit–a different use for the tool roll!

One Day Build Personalized Medical Kit