Etsy Craft Party 2016

Etsy Craft Party 2016 – Coast in the Shell

The Etsy Craft Party is Etsy’s annual celebration of meeting, making, creativity and community, and the Portsmouth and Southsea Consortium is proud to take part in its second one, following the success of last year’s Etsy Craft Party – Crane of Thrones.

What’s going on?

This coming 17 and 18 June, the Portsmouth and Southsea Consortium is teaming up with Seeded to host a series of free creative workshops as part of Etsy Craft Party. We’ll use waste materials from our local seafront (and a few bits from home) to create some pieces of art and contemporary craft to show the potential for these discarded materials to have a second life.

Everything we make will be fun, quick and perfect for summer – and a chance to dig through that carrier bag full of carrier bags we know you have in a kitchen drawer or cupboard somewhere and give some of them a second life! BYO plastic bags for a chance to learn how to turn them into a continuous length of ‘plarn’ that’s suitable for crochet, knitting, weaving, macramé…

In between workshops, we’ll be sorting through some of the items found on our beaches and trying a few tutorials ourselves – everyone is welcome to join in! We’ll even lay on some light refreshments!

OK, but why is it going on?

We’ll do this in support of marine conservation charity ORCA, accepting donations towards their work* – part of this involves organising groups of volunteers to conduct beach cleans to prevent plastic (and other) waste from entering our oceans. Waste in our oceans is extremely dangerous and can end up being eaten by wildlife, and poisoning them, or they can become tangled up in different types of waste, something that can prevent them from moving and eating, meaning that many die in ways that are so easily prevented. Closer to home, waste on the shoreline poses a serious risk to everyone who uses it – with a particular impact on swimmers, surfers and vulnerable individuals such as children. Also, it’s just plain awful to have a beautiful day out on the beach ruined by being surrounded with rubbish.

We want to do our piece to help raise awareness of the importance of preventing waste from entering our oceans, as well as preventing a few pieces of rubbish from doing so by turning them into something ‘new’.

You’re absolutely right! How can I help?

The easiest ways are to make sure you don’t leave any rubbish on the beach, dispose of your household waste responsibly and pick up a bit of rubbish every time you go out and pop it in a public bin.

Oh, wait – you meant our workshops. Well, we’re encouraging everyone interested in coming along to do a bit of beach cleaning on their own and to bring the (clean and dry) results of this to the workshop(s) of their choice.

You could even get involved with a local activity and reach out to those hoping to have as positive an impact on their local environment as you. The first national #2MinuteBeachClean is happening on 11 June, which is a brilliant chance to do something great, and you might think of doing something as part of BBC Springwatch’s #DoSomethingGreat campaign. As they might say on the radio, other good causes are available.

If you can’t make it to one of our workshops but want to make something from a beach find, share the results of your hard work with us using Instagram and Twitter! Mention @portsconsort and @EtsyUK, and use the hashtags #CoastInTheShell and #EtsyCraftParty!

Wait – didn’t you do something like this last year?

Kind of, but not quite… Every year, loads of Etsy sellers come together in their communities to collaborate and co-operate in creative ways, showing off what they can do and trying to get people together for good times and, often, good causes. If you’re curious about what we did as part of our ‘Crane of Thrones’ Etsy Craft Party last year, you can read more on our ‘morning after’ post here.

I’m there!

Brilliant – we look forward to seeing you! You can register for any number of our workshops, but be quick – spaces are limited due to the size of our host venue…

Click here to head over to our Eventbrite page for details of the workshops and to book your place! You’ll be able to book, if there are spaces, up to one hour before the start of the workshops!

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Please note: The Portsmouth and Consortium cannot accept any responsibility or liability for any damage, injury or loss resulting from your participation in any third party activity or activities. Please be careful and responsible when collecting beach waste – wear appropriate protective clothing, use appropriate protective equipment, and report any dangerous or biohazardous waste to an appropriate authority.

*Donations are optional; costs incurred in the administration of ticket sales through Eventbrite and supplying refreshments will be retained from any monies raised. 100% of what remains from this will go straight to ORCA.

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