Washington, DC is known for being a town of intellectuals, and that’s partially thanks to the proliferation of skill-based classes available in the nation’s capital. Throughout the city, there are a variety of DIY, food making, and other creative workshops that allow the public to learn new talents and meet locals at the same time. Whether or not you feel comfortable holding a sewing needle, paint brush, or microphone, the following five venues in DC will teach you how to express or challenge yourself in new ways.
For the craft aficionado: Shop Made in DC
Look out for: Paper flower classes, craft nights, brunch, holiday card printing workshops, watercolor classes, and jewelry and punch needle embroidery workshops. Follow Shop Made in DC on Eventbrite to stay in the know about every future class.
Why: This 2017-opened retail space is the first store ever dedicated to products made in Washington, DC by local creatives. The Dupont Circle location is home to over 100 products, ranging from jewelry and home decor to a cafe with local coffees, beer, and pastries. Every month, the Shop Made in DC hosts varied, diverse workshops by locals.
For the artful workshop fanatic: Distill Creative
Look out for: Friendship bracelets workshops, vision board and block printing workshops, macramé plant hanger workshops, and cocktails combined with crafts. Follow Distill Creative to reach your Pinterest goals ASAP.
Why: When it began, Distill Creative was known as cocktails+craft and took place in the living room of one of the founders. Nowadays, the creative workshop group provides creative consulting services as well as workshops in New York City, Southern Carolina, and Washington, DC. While collaborating with local brands, Distill Creative offers an assortment of classes, from block printing to learning how to set your intentions with the help of a vision board.
For the curious foodie and etiquette enthusiast: The Watergate Hotel
Why: The Watergate Hotel is known for its scandalous past in the nation’s capital, but lately it’s been a perfect venue for expression. In June 1972, it was the site where five intruders were caught in the headquarters of the Democratic National Committee, leading to the resignation of President Nixon. Since the hotel reopened in June 2016 after its renovation, it has transformed into more than just a pretty venue. It is now a killer spot for drinking cocktails, beer, or wine as well as learning about cooking, baking, and proper dining etiquette. Every few months, the hotel partners with local chocolatiers to offer exclusive truffle making classes. Etiquette classes with notable experts cover topics like body language tips and do’s and don’ts of planning and hosting a party.
For the person with the skills and the street cred: Artjar
Why: Street art has transcended its traditionally grungy past, earning price tags that can extend to the six figures and beyond. Thanks to Artjar, the public can learn to express themselves through spray paint. In these classes, learn basic drawing techniques as well as graffiti art letter formations and techniques. Included with each class is a short walking tour. Past clients of Artjar have included the Smithsonian, Nike, CIA, and BMW.
For the person who always wants the last laugh: Stand-Up Studios
Why: Stand-Up Studios is the place for you if you think you’re funny, want to be funny, or are simply interested in becoming a better public speaker or storyteller. This popular DC comedy venue offers skill-based classes as well as private coaching for those of all ages. Come and support the arts by viewing a comedy performance or even becoming a part of one.