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New South Coast "Library" Doesn't Serve Up Books; It's A Community Crafts Workshop

(KCLU photo)
A silk painting class at Santa Barbara's "Crafters's Library"

Unique business features tools, machines and other items to create crafts, as well as "how-to" classes

Class is in session at a unique South Coast business. It’s a silk painting class, with students painted colorful images on silk stretched over plastic frames.

It’s one of the many offerings at a unique new downtown Santa Barbara business intended to cater to crafters.

Andrew Rawls is owner of the business, which is called “The Crafter’s Library.” The 3200 foot space off of State Street, in La Arcada Plaza, is filled with all kinds of equipment, and tools for people to get creative.

Rawls went to UC Santa Barbara, but then moved to Washington, D.C. But, he liked the community, and always dreamed of returning. So, he opened opened the store in May. He knew he was taking a risk, not only opening a one-of-a-kind business, but doing it during a pandemic. He admits family and friends were a bit skeptical.

The businesses has a number of work spaces, as well as a classroom area. That’s where Jana Brody is teaching the silk screen class.

Blair Bittle is painting some colorful yellow and green flowers on silk. Bittle is a watercolor painter, and you can see it in the work he’s creating. He says he's not sure how it will turn out, but he's enjoying creating it.

(KCLU photo)
Blair Bittle works on a silk painting at Santa Barbara's Crafter's Library.

The classes range from "Sewing 101", to "Etch your own glass." There are kids classes as well, like “Kids Make Your Own Scrunchie.”

One of the elements of the Crafters Library is a retail section. People who are regulars can actually sell their creations here.

Rawls says one of the things that’s surprised him since opening is who’s coming in to use the space. He thought it might be older people, but admits its turned into a little bit of everyone.

You can find a link to “The Crafter’s Library” at:

Lance Orozco has been News Director of KCLU since 2001, providing award-winning coverage of some of the biggest news events in the region, including the Thomas and Woolsey brush fires, the deadly Montecito debris flow, the Borderline Bar and Grill attack, and Ronald Reagan's funeral.