Penland School of Crafts


Penland School of Crafts is a national center for craft education dedicated to helping people live creative lives. Located in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina, Penland offers one-, two-, and eight-week workshops in books & paper, clay, drawing, glass, iron, metals, photography, printmaking and letterpress, textiles, and wood. The school also sponsors artists’ residencies, community education programs, and a craft gallery.

I remember the first time that I heard of this school … I was quite surprised!  I was surprised, not just because of its existence, but because of its focus – they deal with contemporary crafts!  They are not worried about your basic traditional crafts or your basic craft ideas (aka, no learning to knit a sweater)!

Their educational philosophy is one of total immersion – students take a single course for a period of one to eight weeks in a workshop setting.  In other words, they believe in learning by doing.

Maybe at some point in the future, Jill and I will decide to attend some classes at Penland!  Some of them look really cool … especially the photography and glass-blowing … but all of them are really interesting.