The Holyoke Creative Arts Center offers classes for members and the general public. Classes take place during two-month sessions. If you would like to attend a single class as a drop-in student, please contact info@holyokecac.org to make arrangements.

 

COURSE DESCRIPTIONS

Upholstery

Led by master upholsterer Gary Clarke, this class is taught using an apprentice model. Students bring their own pieces (your grandmother’s antique chair or perhaps a thrift store find?) and transform them into custom, functional art. The Center’s shop is filled with professional-grade equipment, including high powered staple guns and specialized hand tools. As one of our most popular classes (and one of very few offered in the area), we typically offer both day and evening sessions.

Students may bring their own chair or other small piece as a project. For sofas and large pieces, contact Gary Clarke for approval. The Center also has several donation pieces for students to use for practice.

Wood Carving

Look up at the beautiful hand carved sign outside our building and you will see the craft of our gifted instructor Jim Barrett. Jim’s vibrant class will have you producing durable and beautiful art pieces out of wood in no time. This course will cover a variety of topics such as types of wood carving, wood, wood finishing and tool selection, care and use. This course is taught in a flexible manner mixing formal instruction with unstructured participation. 
Beginning students will carve a wall plaque in low relief that will be followed by a carving in the round of a selected small bird or other animal or human figure. 
More experience or advanced students are encouraged to bring their projects in progress or work on projects of their choosing.

Chair Caning

Restore your heirloom pieces with a traditional craft of a bygone era: chair caning. This class is taught open studio style by Kathy MacLean, an experienced crafter who has been teaching caning for over 25 years. The class is open to beginners as well as advanced students. Kathy encourages new students to stop in with their project a few weeks prior to class in order to order necessary supplies.

Rug Hooking

Learn the art of rug hooking, an American tradition dating back to the 19th century. Our rug hooking classes are taught by Margaret Arraj, an artist with a passion for creating rugs inspired by ethnic and historic designs. Her rugs are made in the traditional style using a wooden handled hook, and have been exhibited throughout New England. 

Quilting

We offer both structured and unstructured quilting classes, for beginners and experienced quilters alike. Produce beautiful heirloom-quality pieces to be treasured for generations in a well-equipped studio with large, clean work tables and commercial sewing machines. Experienced quilter? Take our quilting open studio and work independently alongside experienced crafters.

Sewing

Always wanted to make or alter your own clothes, curtains, or home furnishings? Take our sewing basics class to get started, or dive into other specialized courses offered throughout the year. We are looking at expanding our sewing classes in the near future - please check out our course offerings regularly!

Fiber Arts

HCAC is pleased to offer new courses in fiber arts! Our fiber arts classes allow you to combine weaving, needle felting, and other traditional techniques into your own custom pieces. Bring any fiber arts project-one you’re working on and would like help, or one you’d like to start! Mediums covered include (but are not limited to) quilting, sewing, knitting, crocheting, weaving, spinning yarn, needle felting... whatever you’d like! Instructor Pam Hiser has over 15 years experience in various fiber arts, and is excited about helping you learn a new craft, or finish your projects!

Painting

Our painting courses are taught by Anne Mueller, a classically trained studio painter. Equally facile in almost any medium, she prefers to work in oil, watercolors or pen and ink. A realist, she is noted for her landscapes, portraiture and still life paintings. Anne was chosen by Channel 40 in 1990 as Spirit of the Bay State for her paintings of the vanishing family farms in Massachusetts.