By Melinda Casilli
When I was little, I loved making things. I would often sneak into my mother’s sewing bin looking for leftover scraps of material or felt to use for my next creation. I would hoard empty boxes, colored paper, milk jugs, or anything else I could find, then I would work my magic, creating things out of the everyday items I had squirreled away. Being creative as a child was natural, much like breathing. I still love making things now that I’m an adult, but I could use some help in the creativity department. I feel like I lost my creative edge somewhere between mortgage payments and job responsibilities. Pablo Picasso was correct when he said, “Every child is an artist. The problem is staying an artist when you grow up.”
If you‘re looking for ways to spark your creativity or want to learn a new craft, your local library is here to help. The Prince William Public Library System not only offers books on a variety of arts and crafts, they now also offer Creativebug, available through the Digital Library at pwcgov.org/library. Creativebug has over 1,000 arts and craft video classes taught by award-winning artists and designers that you can watch online and the best part is that it’s completely free to Library patrons. All you need is your library card and the pin number attached to it to login and create an account.
To log onto Creativebug, go to pwcgov.org/library. Click on the green Digital Library button, then click on the letter “C” located in the blue ribbon in the middle of the page. Scroll down and Creativebug will be listed in blue. Click on it and you will be directed to their website. Enter your library card number and pin number, then click log in. You’ll then be prompted to create a username and password to gain access to all the wonderful classes and patterns that Creativebug offers. They have classes in art, design, sewing, quilting, paper, knitting, crochet, food, home, jewelry, holiday, party, and kids. Learn to knit sweaters, crochet socks, make pottery, and so much more.
There are also multi-part classes and techniques for those who are more advanced. Each video has the instructor’s name and length of time posted in the corner. When you click on a class you’re interested in, an overview will play telling you everything you’ll learn. If you need to take notes while watching a class, there’s a helpful note-taking feature to click on and start typing notes. There is a beginner’s section in each category, which is perfect for those just starting a new craft. The videos are easy to follow with clear directions and close up views so you can really see how the professionals do things. Each class starts out with the materials that are needed, where to find them, and why those materials were chosen. You can start and stop at any time, learning at your own pace. The artists and designers also share tips and tricks they’ve learned through the years.
A beautiful inspirational feed full of completed projects from people who use Creativebug is also on the website, the Daily Practice page has daily challenges sure to spark anyone’s creativity, and the Pattern Library has many different patterns that you can crochet or knit.
So, the next time the “creative bug” bites you, remember your local library and give Creativebug a try!