Why Camp ThunderCraft?
The name ThunderCraft embodies what we hope to accomplish at this UCU-inspired camp. We all understand that electric charge we all get as makers and entrepreneurs when our crafty and business sides come together. When those elements converge, we have a roar which cannot be ignored.
The world of craft has broadened over the years to encompass so many types of media, levels of experience, and differing visions; while we are all our own individual selves, there’s an unmistakable rumble inside of each one of us that can allow us to make a living off of our creative energy.
We feel this rumble when we learn new techniques, when we expand our fan base, when we try new approaches and when we realize that “we are onto something.” Camp ThunderCraft gives makers the opportunity to connect with like-minded crafters and artists who understand the drive necessary to be one’s own boss, the obstacles and self-doubt we all experience along the way, and the continued motivation we all seek to keep ourselves productive, accountable, and successful.
This camaraderie is very powerful, and we want you all to leave Camp ThunderCraft feeling ready to tackle new hurdles in your business, inspired to try new ideas and empowered to keep growing your business, while being bolstered by the network and community that we forge together. Because there’s NOTHING better than being your own boss and being able to make a living doing what you love. Plus, camp is gonna be a BLAST!
Camp ThunderCraft’s Mission:
- To create a space where small creative business owners can come together to learn from one another, inspire each other to continue down our own creative paths, and connect with one another to learn better business practices FOR THEMSELVES.
- To build relationships through a safe space that encourages idea sharing, self-reflection, and collaboration, that will extend to the outside world even after the weekend is over.
- To learn from each other’s experiences running small craft businesses and to magnify that knowledge in a focused, secluded environment, generating ideas for new directions in which to grow
The Nitty Gritty
- Who: Makers and small business owners from near and far
- What: A weekend retreat focused around educational sessions, panel and roundtable discussions, self-reflection, networking, and connecting.
- Where: Camp Burton on beautiful Vashon Island, WA
- When: April 7th-9th, 2017
- Cost: $300 (includes all lodging, meals, snacks & drinks)
Registration deadline is March 24th; No refunds will be given after March 1st
Camp ThunderCraft will begin at 4:00pm on Friday, April 7th and will end at 12:00pm on Sunday, April 9th.
The cabin rooms sleep 3 people each, so please be aware that you will be sharing a room with 2 others. It’s camp, get cozy!
What you’ll get for your $300
- 2 nights of lodging
- Wine & cheese happy hour
- 5 meals, treats, drinks & snacks
- 4+ educational classes/sessions (see confirmed list of speakers below)
- Roundtable discussions focusing on various obstacles we face as small business owners
- Connecting with your community and other makers
- Ample downtime and relaxation
- Secluded waterfront retreat on scenic Vashon
Confirmed Speakers/Sessions (and more coming soon!)
Molly Wizenberg | Keynote Speaker
This will be a keynote talk on my circuitous path to becoming a self-employed writer, writing teacher, and restaurant co-owner, and how I have worked with disappointment, change, and discomfort to continually reinvent myself and rearticulate my definition of success.
Molly Wizenberg is the author of the James Beard Award-winning blog Orangette and two New York Times bestselling books, A Homemade Life and Delancey. She has written for Bon Appetit, TheWashington Post, The Art of Eating, Cherry Bombe, and more, and she also co-hosts (with Matthew Amster-Burton) the hit food-and-comedy podcast Spilled Milk. Molly lives in Seattle, Washington, where she co-owns (with chef Brandon Pettit) the restaurants Delancey, Essex, and Dino’s Tomato Pie. When she isn’t working on all that stuff, she’s hanging out with her daughter June and dog-slash-magical-beast Alice, either cooking or reading or delving into a new sewing project.
Kristen Rask wears many hats. She opened a store, Schmancy in 2004 which remained open until 2016. At her shop she started an annual plush show that garnered attention all over the world and landed her her first book deal. Since she has been published 8 times by two different publishers. She started a monthly meet up for small business owners that became an annual conference called School House Craft. She is also the President of Urban Craft Uprising, co-owner of Urban Craft Uprising’s store, Headquarters and recently was hired to do social marketing for the Moore Hotel. She does sleep and enjoys cooking and relaxing when she finds time. She’s a big believer in self care which she attributes to being able to do so much and mostly she is able to because she loves her job and community a lot.
A lifelong entrepreneur, Lindsey Ross has been the co-organizer of Urban Craft Uprising for 12 years, co-owner of UCU’s retail shop, Headquarters since it opened this past April, and the owner of Yarnia, a custom yarn shop in Portland, for 9 years, which she recently transitioned from a brick & mortar to an online-only business out of her home. She loves finding ways for businesses to run more efficiently, and designing systems to make that happen. She also loves spreadsheets…A LOT.
On her off hours you may catch her biking around town with her husband and a jambox, catching live local bluegrass, clocking her 10,000 steps with her pitbull Tucker, or knitting simultaneously with any other activity that doesn’t require both hands.
Cat is co-owner of Velouria and runs the social media for the shop. Realizing that the shop’s following offers a unique opportunity to affect a wider audience than her personal network has spurred her to engage in conversations around Black Lives Matter as well as abortion access and women’s rights in general.
Chris Guillot (GEE-oh with a hard “G”), Founder and Retail Consultant at Merchant Method, combines over 17 years of strategic retail leadership, retail instruction, and small business management to empower independent retailers, makers, and small-batch manufacturers to run their inventory-based businesses with more clarity, confidence, and ease through individual consulting and group instruction.
Her national career includes the retailing and manufacturing of women’s and men’s fashion apparel, women’s accessories, branded and private label handbags, stationery and gifting products, and personal care for Anthropologie, J. Crew, Nordstrom, Gap Inc., Estée Lauder, and the Green Inspired brand designed exclusively for Target.
In 2012 Chris founded Merchant Method to provide “graduate-level” retail training for already successful independent retailers, makers, and small-batch manufacturers who need proven and profitable strategies to grow their businesses to next-level success in a sustainable and profitable way.
Robyn Bradley is a PNW native, self-made entrepreneur, and 3 out of 5 would agree she’s a pretty nice lady. Robyn has a degree in photography, and decided to turn her creative passion and love for the environment into a business in 2009. She currently owns handmade. la conner, a combination retail shop and workspace that is changing the way we see our skincare, cleaning, and body products. Her products can be found online, and in shops all around the world.
Shauna James Ahern
Shauna James Ahern is the author of the cookbook, Gluten-Free Girl Everyday, which won a James Beard award for excellence. Her previous books include Gluten-Free Girl and the Chef, named one of the best cookbooks of 2010 by The New York Times, and the food memoir, Gluten-Free Girl. She is also the author, photographer, and head baker at Gluten-Free Girl and the Chef, her much-loved food website (www.glutenfreegirl.com), which she creates with her chef husband, Daniel Ahern. Her latest cookbook, American Classics Reinvented, has inspired thousands to return to baking and making their favorite comfort foods without gluten. Her work has been published or recognized by The New York Times, Gourmet, Bon Appetit, Epicurious, Babble, The Guardian, Gilt Taste, CNN’s Eatocracy, the Food Network, and The Washington Post. Shauna and Daniel, with their two children, live on Vashon Island, where they are probably cooking something as you read this.
Kelly Froh and Eroyn Franklin
Kelly has self-published many mini-comics and zines including the all-comics magazine “The Weeknight Casserole Collection” and the Ignatz-nominated “Stew Brew” (in collaboration with her partner Max Clotfelter). Her comics and stories have appeared in The Seattle Weekly, Poetry Northwest, Moss, and The Women’s Review of Books. She is an art and creative writing teacher with Seniors Creating Art and WITS (Writers in the Schools). In 2015 she was nominated for a James W. Ray Venture Project Award. Kelly has performed her comic stories at the Hugo House’s acclaimed Literary Series, Lit Crawl, Pecha Kucha, On the Boards, and at Bumbershoot. Kelly is also the co-founder and Executive Director of Short Run Comix & Arts Festival.
Eroyn Franklin is a comics artist, illustrator, and arts educator. She has written 2 graphic novels, the Xeric-winning Another Glorious Day at the Nothing Factory, and Detained, which is part of a permanent Wing Luke Museum exhibit at Inscape in Seattle. Eroyn’s comics have been listed in The Best American Comics: The Notable Comics of 2013 and 2014 and she was on the short list for the 2014 Slate Cartoonist Studio Prize for her comic Bikram Addict. In 2015 Eroyn collaborated with her sister, Tory Franklin, to create Fecund, a permanent public art piece for Harborview Medical Center. Eroyn will soon publish Swelling Dwelling, her first children’s book, adapted from a shadow puppet show she performed at Bumbershoot 2013. Eroyn is also working on Dirtbag, her third graphic novel about dumpsterdiving, squatting, and scamming rides across Europe as a young activist. Eroyn is the cofounder and Creative Director of Short Run Comix & Arts Festival.
Lisa Dawn Drogin
Lisa Dawn Drogin is a Digital Marketing Instructor at General Assembly Seattle, Social Media Consultant and Founder/Creative Director of Story of My Dress (thestoryofmydress.com, @storyofmydress). Her expertise spans digital and social media marketing, community engagement, content creation, urban design, branding and visual representation. As a Style Blogger and Social Media Influencer, she has collaborated and partnered with Moorea Seal, Neiman Marcus, Farfetch, University Village, Banana Republic, Sorella Salon, Reebok, Bartell Drugs, Pacific Place and Timex, as examples. Named by Seattle Refined as one of ten favorite Seattle Fashion Bloggers to follow on Instagram, Lisa holds dual Masters Degrees from the University of Michigan and grew up in the beautiful Pacific Northwest.
Wazhma Samizay is an Afghan American entrepreneur. She opened her boutique Retail Therapy in 2003. The boutique doubled up as an art gallery space for artists who were unable to show politically driven work. She is the co-founder of the Seattle made clothing company Bobojan . She consults multiple small businesses with a focus on minority owned businesses committed to sustainability. Her deep love of music led her a partnership with local recording studio Critical Sun.
Valentina Vitols Bello
Camp Thundercraft Testimonials
Loved this weekend! So rich, so beneficial. Loved the camp. Loved the thunder! 🌩⛈🌦Best value EVER in my 19 years in business. So, Thank You for creating the totally affordable, super dynamic, creative business conference weekend EVER. And thank you for the courageous session on “political/personal”. I met amazing women doing amazing things at each moment. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.