KFPL Launches Create Space for local Makers

A local teen uses supplies and equipment at the Kingston Frontenac Public Library Central Branch to create her own tote bag. Photo via KFPL.

Local makers and creators will be able to reserve Create Space at the Kingston Frontenac Public Library (KFPL) Central Branch starting Monday, Jan. 13, 2019. The space will be available Monday to Saturday during regular hours at the Central Branch of KFPL.

What is the Friends of the Kingston Frontenac Public Library Create Space?

The Create Space is a working area of the library. Library patrons will have access to a variety of maker tools. The equipment in the space was generously funded by approximately $25,000 in donations from the Friends of the Kingston Frontenac Public Library.

“We’re excited to offer this space to the community,” said Kimberly Sutherland Mills, Manager of Programming and Outreach for KFPL. “Libraries have always been providers of content – whether it be the written word, music, film. And of course our collections have long supported creators – cookbooks to help you explore new cuisines, how-to books for art techniques and patterns for would-be knitters, etc. Our new Create Space takes the library’s role supporting lifelong learning to a new level by connecting our community with the equipment they need for their projects.”

Two computers (a PC and a Mac) are available for photo and video editing. The computers are equipped with Epson Fast Foto scanners which will allow users to digitize entire photo albums in minutes, and Elgato Video Capture which can transfer movies from VHS and DVD to MP4 format. You can reserve these computers for four-hour allotments with your library card.

“The options for a space like this are as open-ended as the creative endeavours our patrons might want to pursue, so we based our decisions on a community survey,” Sutherland Mills said. “When asked what sort of projects the community wanted the library to support through programming, there was strong support for crafting, artisan demonstrations, simple repairs, photography and 3D printing. We’ve focused our Art Hive and other maker-focused programming, and the Create Space equipment, in those areas.”

There are also a Janome sewing machine and a Cricut maker available for booking in the Create Space, and a chest of simple hand tools, two guitar pick punches, and two button and magnet makers are available on a first-come, first-served basis.

A Glowforge laser cutter and a Janome embroidery machine will be coming later this year.

“We started introducing the equipment during our Art Hive programs in the fall. One patron used the Cricut to create stencils to etch holiday scenes onto wine glasses, and another used it to make vinyl decals for his pickup truck window. Our sewing machine was used to create a Halloween costume. We just added the video and photo digitizers, and there has been a lot of buzz around those,” Sutherland Mills explained.

An example of a vinyl window decal made at the Central Branch of the KFPL using the Cricut maker. Photo via KFPL.

“The Create Space will allow community members to tackle creative projects with minimal expense,” Sutherland Mills continued “Whether you’re a new sewer who hasn’t been able to make the financial investment in a machine yet, or a senior who gave away their machine when downsizing to an apartment, now you can use the library’s Janome sewing machine for free. Or maybe you’ve seen the Cricut Maker at a local store and you want to give it a try to see what it’s all about. Now you can book either for a Saturday morning and settle in with your project for four hours.”

While the Friends of the Library Create Space is not staffed, all potential creators are welcome to visit the weekly Art Hive programs and learn more about the equipment on offer. Read more about the library’s Art Hives here: https://www.kingstonist.com/news/kfpls-art-hive-a-creative-outlet-for-kingstons-maker-community/ 

Just some of the items available for use in the Create Space at the Central Branch of KFPL.

KFPL plans to offer occasional workshops to delve further into creative skills. We will share the details as we learn more.

Children over the age of eight are permitted to use the Create Space equipment with adult supervision. Patrons over the age of 16 can reserve the machinery with their library cards and use it unsupervised.

The central branch of KFPL is at 130 Johnson St. and is open seven days a week. Learn more about the Create Space on their website here: https://www.kfpl.ca/library-services/friends-of-the-library-create-space 


Jessica is a busy working mom and writer. She enjoys covering local interest stories, and creating content for her own website A Modern Mom’s Life.  She loves living, working, and playing in Kingston.  You can see what she gets up to with her family on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram!

376 Shares

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *