The Crafter’s Library is dedicated to the idea that anyone can craft.
2020 was a rough year for pretty much everyone. When founder Andrew Rawls couldn’t rely on the tour company he started in Washington, D.C. to make ends meet, he ended up leaving the city he had called home for the last eight years. He spent time visiting family in Boston and Houston, eventually creating a home base out of his mother’s basement in Boulder, CO. Determined not to be the millennial living in his mother’s basement longer than absolutely necessary, Andrew started to think of creative ways he could get back on his feet. His mind kept wandering back to a memory he made while traveling in India, about a month before the pandemic lockdown started.
He and his best friend had been traveling in India for a week in February of 2020. They had come to Ranthambore, a national wildlife preserve in the center of the country, to go on a sightseeing safari looking for tigers. After an adventure filled day of jeep rides and monkey temples, Andrew and his friend were relaxing on their patio, decompressing with a Kingfisher or two. After a few drinks, the conversation drifted from the incredible events of the day to hopes and dreams for their futures.
Andrew’s friend asked him what his dream job would be. Inspired in part by the year he spent on US Army Garrison Kwajalein Atoll in the Marshall Islands, running a teen center for the kids of the active duty and contractors deployed there, he replied that he wanted to create a community space where people could come together and create things, like a co-working space but for crafters.
It was from that one conversation a half a world away that The Crafter’s Library was born. This DIY studio and coworking space is the culmination of that hard work and determination of many people. From the non-profit that connected Andrew to his business coach who helped him create the business plan, to the “fairy god-mother” who helped Andrew find the space, to the incredible team at La Arcada Plaza in Santa Barbara, CA, The Crafter’s Library was from its inception a community effort. Those people and so many other have helped make this dream a reality.