Arts & crafts for all

What is Handiwork? We're a community creativity hub. A neighborhood makery. A nifty little shop full of beautiful and useful things.

Our mission is to hold space for people to explore their crafty interests in a low pressure environment and provide a retail platform for local makers to sell their work.

We strive to provide a safe and welcoming space for all. Anyone using speech or behavior that makes others feel unwelcome or unsafe will be asked to leave. 

Our guiding principles

  • We believe that creativity is self kindness. Making something with our hands is good for our hearts and minds.
  • We believe that spending time around other people who are making things is good for us, too.
  • We believe that experimentation is important, and a little bit of struggle and problem solving is a necessary part of the creative process.
  • We believe that having access to someone with experience and expertise can decrease the chances we’€™ll get frustrated and give up. 
  • We recognize that existing systems of power grant privilege and access unequally, and we work to create a space that welcomes and encourages everyone to tap into their creative energies. To that end, we prioritize the work of makers who have been historically underrepresented and/or marginalized and we hold ourselves accountable for doing the work to dismantle white supremacy and other forms of privilege that we hold.
  • We believe that the word "creativity" encompasses a wide range of activities and that everyone has a creative spark within.

Our mission supports our core values:

  • Anti-racism
  • Accessibility
  • Creativity for its own sake
  • Lifelong learning and exploration
  • Environmental sustainability

In order to live into the work, we donate 1% of each sale we make to organizations fighting for civil rights and human rights. Currently, those organizations are Maine-Wabanaki REACH, EqualityMaine, and Black Lives Matter.

Acknowledgements

This project was more than a year in the making, with some significant twists and turns along the way. I literally couldn't have done this without immense kindness and patience from friends, family, neighbors, and strangers. My deepest heartfelt gratitude goes out to:

Nate Stevens at The Boulos Company
Frank O'Connor at NAI The Dunham Group
Lee Lowry at Jensen Baird Gardner & Henry
Tracy Brockhouse
Jennifer Gormley
Carrie Dessertine-Thwigg at Mey & Co

Andrew Knowles: thank you for responding to my incessant questions with equanimity and grace.

Andrew Zarro, Bridget Tremblay, Emily Serway, Taylor & Eric Hamlin, Katie Broadbent, Lori Blake, Kate Corrigall, Paige Enright, Kristy Klaiber, Ben & Danielle Graffius, the Hive, and countless other lovely humans: thank you for cheering me on and keeping my spirits afloat whenever doubt rode in on delay's coattails.

Layla F. Saad, Rachel Cargle, Myisha T, Mia Mingus, the artists of Unfinished Object, Allen SalwayIjeoma OluoShay Stewart-Bouley, and many many many many many more: thank you for putting your work and your selves out there to make it possible for people who hold all kinds of privilege to see the world more accurately and behave more equitably. Implicit bias is a dark wilderness, and overcoming it is a lifelong exercise in navigation. I honor the ways in which you're lighting the path forward.

And finally, Bartley Parker: none of this would have happened without you. You're the best.

With love and gratitude,

JT