Birthday parties make me crazy. Well, unless they are for me…then I’m a big fan! I can’t even host a playdate without mild anxiety, so the idea of a crowd of kids running through my house makes me feel faint. I’m not a party planner by nature – a procrastinating perfectionist with ADHD and anxiety makes for a party that is thrown together at the last minute, despite months of thinking about it, and a tense hostess who is sulking because the party isn’t what she knew it could be. There’s no loot bag that canmake up for that!
So I generally like to out-source our parties. I always think that if I have the party at home we will save money, but that is never true because I end up buying out the entire craft store to keep the little darlings occupied. So we go out. But we have done indoor play places several times, parties at the dance studio, and gymnastics. A lot of the parties are geared for younger kids as well, so we were looking for something different for Molly this year that she and her quiet, artistic friends would enjoy and would be easy for me.
Molly suggested a pottery party because that’s her favourite kind of art project, and we decided on Crack Pot Studio in Oakville. The studio had come out to the girls’ school when they were in kindergarten and Molly and Grace painted these beautiful bowls:
A couple years later Grace got to go on a field trip to Crack Pot Studio and she made this really cute turtle:
The studio is celebrating their 20 year anniversary this year, and they offer both Creative Clay and Bisque Painting options for birthday parties. We decided on the clay option because that is Molly’s favourite.
We were led to a private room in the back and we had our own instructor to teach us how to shape the clay and taught us different techniques to make sure it all stayed together and looked the way we wanted it. Each of us had our own ball of clay and we got to work with it right from the start, which is perfect for my fidgety kids. We were shown how to make a basic pinch pot, and then from there how to expand that into making something else.
The kids totally ran with it. I lack artistic imagination, so I made…a pinch pot. But it’s got polka dots, so I’d say it’s completely genius! Grace of course made a unicorn. Molly made a cat bowl. I think it’s a ploy to get a cat…well we have a cat bowl so now we have to get a cat, right mom? Maggie refused to miss dance class that day so she didn’t join us.
Our instructor Roshni was awesome, and very encouraging to all of us, helping us when we needed it, but not taking over either. That’s a skill I need to learn – I tend to be grabby and say “let me do it,” which totally explains why no one in my house can load the dishwasher properly.
Here are our finished products before they were put in the kiln:
And our completed works of art two weeks later:
We were amazed at the transformation of the colours when we saw the finished products!
When Molly and I went to pick up our artwork we couldn’t resist staying to do a little bisque painting at the drop-in studio. It was nice to have some one-on-one time to chat and relax while we painted together. I haven’t picked those pieces up yet, but here is a sneak peek before glazing:
Isn’t Molly’s cat adorable? I love the sponging that she did on it. As for the squirrel…I think it’s our new ADHD family mascot!
March Break is next week and Crack Pot Studio is offering a Clay Camp where kids will learn how to use the pottery wheel. The studio is also open for drop-in painting, which I think the kids and I will be checking out. What do you think we should paint next?
Disclosure – I received a discount on our party in exchange for writing about our experience, but all the opinions, and my awesome polka dots, are my own.