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Ignite Craft Logo

Craft and Community in 5-Minute Talks

Information on how to reserve a (free) ticket to attend, submit a proposal to speak, help spread the word, volunteer on the night of the event, or sponsor the event!

Another night of great inspiration, cool company, and new stories from makers in Boston, Cambridge, Somerville, and environs. For the 6th year, Common Cod is sponsoring Ignite Craft Boston, where up to 20 creative souls will share their passion for their crafts with a like-minded, crafty audience.

Around the world, folks have been putting together Ignite events to show what they’re doing. The Ignite motto is “Enlighten us, but make it quick,” so each speaker has 20 photos or other visuals that automatically advance every 15 seconds, totaling 5 minutes. At Ignite Craft Boston, we’ll get to see all sorts of amazing, eye-opening DIY in only 90 minutes. Past talks can be seen on the Cod YouTube channel. Tickets are free, but seating is limited, and traditionally we pack the space, so watch this space to reserve your tickets as soon as they are available.

Join Us

Come join the Boston area crafting community for the 6th annual Ignite Craft Boston

  • Ignite Craft Boston
  • Friday, January 8, 2016
  • MIT’s Stata Center, Room 123, Cambridge, MA 02139 (for GPS users, 32 Vassar Street)
  • Doors open at 6:30PM, and presentations begin at 7:00PM.
  • The event is free; however, due to limited space at the venue, you must reserve a spot.


MIT’s Stata Center is located at 32 Vassar Street in Cambridge, between Main Street and Mass Ave (the blue pin on the map below). The closest T stop is Kendall station on the Red Line (the red pin on the map). Street parking is plentiful in this neighborhood, but you can also park in the 139 Mass Ave MIT parking lot after 4:00PM.


Click image to enlarge


2016 Speaker Lineup


Amanda Hooge
Common Cod Fiber Guild

Bookbinding, Postmortem
Matthew Garelick
Matthew Garelick has been an amateur bookbinder for 20 years now. This past Spring he suffered a cardiac arrest, his heart stopping for nearly two minutes. This has had a huge effect on his desire to create things.
Matthew has been bookbinding for 20 years, but he has always loved working with his hands. He has worked as a carpenter, a locksmith, and a balloon artist, and dabbled in paper making, block printing, and calligraphy. He currently works for a large arts organization in Boston, but spends evenings and weekends in his garret making books for people he loves.

INDIGO: Dyeing the Blues
Amy Lou Stein
Craftwork Somerville
Amy Lou Stein will talk about the ancient magic of Indigo…a bit about its history, uses, and how the chemistry works. Indigofera has a long and complicated history, with uses ranging from ground cover to sacred dye. Many people around the planet are changing the way we view natural dye, and, specifically, how we create an Indigo vat in a safe and sustainable way. Amy Lou will share a very easy recipe and bring examples to show.
Amy Lou founded Craftwork in summer 2015 after many years of searching for just the right place to house a collaborative workshop. An all-around making fanatic, Amy wanted to create a home not just for the textile arts, but for making of all kinds, from indigo-dyeing to herbal tinctures, from tarot-reading to custom-fit bras.

Creative and Sustainable Living
Sarah-Grace Farrer
How can we live more creatively and sustainably without feeling overwhelmed? In 2015, Sarah-Grace Farrer tackled this question head on by challenging herself weekly to take up or continue to implement something new in her daily routine that was either creative, or sustainable, or ideally both! From SOS (Saving Old Socks) through darning, to the joys of letter writing and creating her own lights for her bike helmet, there are so many wonderful ways to take baby steps towards a lifestyle which encourages our creativity and is, most importantly, kind to our earth.
Sarah-Grace lives in Somerville and has spent the last year blogging each week about a new idea on how to live more creatively and sustainably. You may find all 52 of her ideas at

Craftiness is Everywhere
Katy Love
Once you start crafting, you begin to see that craft projects can start anywhere….even your grocery store. Katy Love will discuss four fun craft projects that start in these familiar aisles.
Katy has been crafting from a very young age (Thanks, mom!) when craft supplies meant popsicle sticks and dried macaroni. And while she’s now fully succumbed to the knitting bug, she’s always on the lookout for new projects and creative techniques.

The Bleeding Edge
Jeremiah Huson
So many creative projects and pragmatic tasks are improved by starting with tools in good condition! From woodworking to shaving, mowing the grass to chopping a carrot, edge tools are all around, and to get the best from them, they need maintenance. Such attention to detail isn’t for everyone, but it is rewarding to those who enjoy perfecting their creations.
Jeremiah comes from a family of carpenters, and has been a professional welder for more than 15 years, so becoming a blacksmith over the last few years has been a natural addition. Making tools has meant getting good at sharpening tools, too. When not working with metal or wood, Jeremiah likes to knit, spin, embroider, paint, draw, and basically any other craft that sits still long enough.

PowerPoint Karaoke
Three Intrepid Volunteers

Mad Painted Furniture
Karen Gareis
As a starving grad student, Karen Gareis started garage-saling and garbage-picking wood furniture. The quality was better than what she could afford new, but a lot of it was ugly or beat up. It turns out that with cheap tools and materials, you can totally transform wood furniture and other housewares.
Karen is a third-generation crafter who’s been making things for most of her life. Her serial craft obsessions include (but are by no means limited to) origami, sewing, leather embossing, jewelry making, interior decoration, coloring, and knitting.

FiberCamp 2016
Ann Gibson
Common Cod Fiber Guild
FiberCamp is Common Cod’s signature annual weekend of fiber-related teaching, learning, inspiration, and fun! Ann Gibson’s talk will focus on the what, where, when, and how of FiberCamp, and why you should definitely attend this year!
Ann taught herself to knit in her college dorm room. She has been a member of Common Cod since 2014 and lives in Maynard with 1 husband, 2 kids, and 3 knitting machines.

Art Made for Destruction
Bhadrika Love
Bhadrika Love has made a wide variety of ridiculously intricate pinatas for her children. She will present on the process and results.
Bhadrika has worked as a psych nurse for over fifteen years. She has also on occasion spent hundreds of hours making pinatas which are promptly beaten to smithereens by eager children. She insists there is no connection between these facts.

Antique Spinning Wheel Rescue
Krysten Morganti
Making yarn on an antique tool has great appeal, but finding a spinning wheel with promise can be daunting. Krysten Morganti will talk about where to find antique wheels in need of rescue, how to assess whether a wheel has good potential for restoration, and a few nuts and bolts of transforming a wheel from fireplace decor into a working machine.
Krysten bought her first antique spinning wheel two years ago and fell deep into the rabbit hole of collecting and restoring unusual antique and vintage wheels from all over the world. She is now caretaker to a herd of two dozen wheels, most of which were found in the wild and are now back in spinning condition.

Fractal Flames in My Art
Lois Blood Bennett |
There is magic in math. Lois Blood Bennett searches out these infinitely varied images and plays with them, enhances them, and then eventually has them printed on a variety of media — fabric, paper, metal, canvas, mugs… Just wait ’til you see how cool they are! Fractal flames are a member of the iterated function system class of fractals created by Scott Draves in 1992. Lois is learning the math now after 5 years of play.
An artist and Sys Admin, Lois makes art and music. She has been married to a great guy for 34 years. She wants to know about everything. Loves to cook, sing, spin yarn, weave, sew, paint, bike, make jewelry, write code, arrange flowers, solve puzzles, and learn new things. Lois has served in elected leadership positions in her professional organization and in her church — locally and nationally in both. Most importantly, she has a wonderful daughter and two very special granddaughters.

Visual Charlestown & Boston
Paul J. Lane
Paul J. Lane Photography
Paul will present a photographic display of Charlestown & Boston showing the incredible architecture and history encompassed here.
Paul is a lifelong Charlestown resident, photographer, book collector, and Colonial re-enactor


Help out

This event is run by an all-volunteer non-profit. Here are some ways you can help out:

  • Submit a presentation proposal by December 1, 2015 DEADLINE EXTENDED TO DECEMBER 8, 2015 — or mention Ignite Craft Boston to folks you know who have interesting crafts to share with an audience of kindred spirits!
  • Promote Ignite Craft Boston in your social networks using the hashtag #icraft (e.g., your office, Twitter, Facebook).
  • Volunteer to help at Ignite Craft Boston on January 8, 2016 (email
  • Attend Ignite, and bring friends! Free tickets here.
  • Help us find sponsors for refreshments for this event.
  • Donate to the Guild.

Submit a presentation

If you would like to speak, please submit a proposal here by December 1, 2015 DEADLINE EXTENDED TO DECEMBER 8, 2015 (visuals due December 15, 2015).  We will post descriptions of accepted presentations on this page as they are accepted. Here’s a tip sheet for preparing and submitting your talk and visuals.

All talks will be videotaped and posted on the Common Cod YouTube channel after the event. Feel free to watch some Ignite Craft Boston Video from previous years to get an idea about what these talks look like!

Here are some ideas for possible topics: knitting, crochet, LYSOs, weaving, spinning, sewing, quilting, felting/fulling, dyeing, painting, sculpture, print making, fine art, photography, book binding, paper arts, textiles, craft food/beer/cheese, ceramics, soap making, shepherding, farming, gardening, podcasting, blogging, other social media, designing, publishing, woodworking, 3D printing, jewelry, etc.


2015 Ignite Craft Boston information, including presentation descriptions and videos


With your help, we can throw bigger and better events and bring more famous speakers and instructors. Remember, the CCFG is a 501(c)3 organization and your contribution is fully tax-deductible. We welcome donations of any amount.