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DIY crafts and cocktails

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Dinine Signorello likes to unwind with a cocktail, appetizer and a little arts and crafts after a stressful day of work. It's all on the menu at a local brew pub.  "You get to let yourself go," Dinine said. "Indulge your creative side and hang out and you know, maybe catch up with some people you haven't seen in a while." 

Alex Bomus knows she can always craft at home, but says "This is just a little bit more fun setting than my apartment."  And she admits, multi-tasking in this adult setting makes it easier to bond.  "I'm very comfortable at crafting, that's my strong suit.  It's meeting other people that aren't my strong suit." 

Alissa Kombert organizes events like the one dinine and alex attend. She explains this is for guys and gals, and no one needs to be a creative genius to enjoy the experience.  This is more about renewing a lost art you once knew as a child.  "You probably did crafts all the time when you were little and you want to just bring that feeling back, so it's a nice kind of therapeutic thing," Kombert said.

Erin Comyns hosts something similar at her beading business where she offers a weekly wine night.  "New people that might be a little shy. It kind of opens up the conversation and inspires a little bit more creativity of asking for advice and even inputting advice." 

"People are really hungry for opportunities to get together with people that they don't know and to have a social experience that's not online that's physical and tactile and that's in a social space," according to Nina Simon. As an art and history museum director, Simon is internationally-recognized for encouraging community engagement. She points out society is doing less socializing and creating together off-line.  these events can change that.

"I see this whole crafting and making movement as actually kind of re-inventing that and saying 'hey, we need to be around people who we're unfamiliar with, who are from different walks of life," Simon said.  And, she stresses, adding some adult beverages can ease expectations.

"What before was just about, 'Can I present myself in conversation' is now about 'and can I macramé a frog?'  You have to have a sense of welcome and comfort and say  'Yes I can try this, yes I can put my hands on this, 'I'm not going to screw anything up, I'm not going to look like a fool, I'm going to make something," Simon told us. 

Guys are welcome at the events, too, but Simon says unless the craft is something geared toward a more masculine hobby, they're most likely being brought along by a girlfriend, wife or fiance.