This week's cover story details the fantastic rise of Craftsy, Denver's hottest (and most unexpected) start-up, which is making millions delivering online quilting and knitting courses to hobbyists all over the planet. Craftsy is also digitizing the burgeoning maker movement -- turning quilting teachers into online celebrities, cake-decorating aficionados into small business owners, and driving DIYers to makerspaces up and down the Front Range. So why not try Craftsy for yourself? We've listed the company's top free and paid arts-and-crafts classes below. Are they enough to turn you into a bona fide maker? See also: Cabal Takes Over the Concoctory
Hottest Paid Classes
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- Bag Making Basics: Reversible Tote & Zipper Pouch "Looking for a quick, fun project that won't break the bank or tax your nerves? In this absolutely free mini-class, the founder of the popular website Sew, Mama, Sew! guides you through the process of creating two handy and attractive bags. Even beginning sewists will feel at ease following Kristin Link's precise and simple directions - yet the finished product will look entirely professional. These cute and handy bags will garner praise when you carry them and raves when you gift them - if you can bear to give them away!"
- Figure Drawing: An Essential Guide "Master figure drawing as you learn classical techniques for rendering from live models! With Watwood's guidance, you'll progress from a simple block-in sketch to a gestural drawing to a polished piece with depth and dimension. Learn how to set up and light a live model, and how to use graphite pencil and simple angles to create an accurate outline for any figure. Add life-like energy as you incorporate gestural lines, then carve out the form with hatching, shading and highlighting techniques. As a bonus, Watwood will show you how to create custom toned papers to add a unique touch to your work."
- Short Rows "Stitch your knits into shape and never make a wrong wrap or turn! Learn how easy short rows can be in this free, technique-based mini-class. Swatch along with Carol as she shows four different methods: wrap and turn, Japanese short rows, yarn over short rows and her own invisible short rows. You'll recognize Carol's passion for knitwear design -- influenced by her engineering background -- as she demonstrates how short row shaping can be used to tailor knitted garments."
- Professional Family Portraits "Bring out the best in your subjects with professional photographer Kirk Tuck's advanced strategies for family portraiture. Transform any room into a portrait studio with Kirk's quick tips on improving your setting, and easily create ideal lighting indoors and out with the use of bounce flash, umbrellas and affordable materials like foam core. Discover the key to engaging your subject as Kirk reveals how to capture shots of energetic and oftentimes impatient toddlers. Shoot flattering portraits of mature subjects with professional exposure and composition techniques. Learn how to direct and pose a large group, and then move into post-processing to erase blemishes, soften wrinkles and modify color cast for polished images that families will be proud to display in their homes for years to come."
- Cabinetry Tips & Techniques "Get started with cabinetry and gain the skills you need to tackle your own build! WOOD magazine contributing craftsman and educator Jim Heavey will guide you through cabinet anatomy, how to stabilize and square your pieces, and ways to update existing cabinets. Learn how to give tired doors new life by fixing broken rails and stiles and replacing sagging hinges. Plus, banish loud slamming doors for good when you install a handy soft-close feature. Then, determine the cause of sticking doors, and find out how to tighten or re-glue loose joints. You'll also learn how to repair and replace drawer slides and glides, and get tips on sanding and planing warped sides. Finally, get inspired to reface and refinish your wood for a brand new look!"