Stoke your creativity with crafty classes on the North Fork

Fall’s rolling in and schools have reopened, but kids don’t have to be the only ones expanding their minds. Fall is a great time to learn a new craft or art skill, even just for an evening.

The North Fork is awash with classes where you can create everything from a watercolor painting to a macrame wine bottle holder to whale sculptures from upcycled marine debris. All levels are welcome, including beginners, so don’t be intimidated. It’s all about having fun.

“We’ve seen such an amazing response to these classes, and they are building communities here on the North Fork,” said Tracy Kessler, event planner and founder of A North Fork Affair and its latest craft series. “Usually groups of two or three people sign up together, but we’ve had people come alone too and make new friends. What’s wonderful is witnessing like-minded individuals finding each other in classes, enjoying a nice evening together, and beginning great friendships.”

Below are some great classes to check out. Note: Classes fill up fast so don’t hesitate.

Flowers Watercolor Workshop

Melissa Hyatt watercolor classes are inspired by nature. (Credit: David Benthal)

Location: Peconic Cellar Doors, Peconic 

Date: Sunday, Sept. 8

Time: 5 to 7 p.m.

Fee: $50

Learn to paint cone flowers, sunflowers and other late summer blooms in watercolor with watercolor artist Melissa Hyatt — all while sipping wine at the  beautiful Peconic Cellar Door tasting room. Hyatt will demo her painting techniques and teach both drawing the flowers, mixing paints, playing with wet-on-wet and wet-on-dry techniques. Attendees can work off flowers presented or bring a favorite photo or garden to paint.

All watercolor workshop materials included, and guests will create a 5” x 7” painting to take home. All levels welcome. Ages 12 and up. Get tickets.


Home Styling with Amanda Giuliano 

Location: Nicolette’s for the Home, Southold

Date: Wednesday, Sept. 25

Time: 7 to 9 p.m.

Fee: $62

Whether you’re into decorating for seasonal holidays like Halloween and Christmas, love to capture fall’s flavor in your décor, or are just into great design, step up your home game this season. Home styling professional Amanda Giuliano from Giuliano Designs and Nicolette’s for the Home will teach you how to style your bookshelf, fireplace mantle to create seasonal — and Instagram-worthy —tablescapes. Spend an evening at the store after hours enjoying light bites and sampling North Fork wines, all while learning the tricks of the trade. Get tickets.


Cake Decorating with Cakes by Calynne

Location TBD

Date: Tuesday, Oct. 29

Fee: $95

Nothing impresses guests more than a beautifully frosted cake that you decorated yourself. A North Fork Affair is hosting this culinary class focusing on cake decorating. Guests will enjoy a social evening of wine and light bites and learn how to decorate a cake like a true professional. At the session, cakes will be pre-baked, the buttercream will be mixed in colors, and it will just be waiting for your creativity.

Guests will then learn technique for stacking the cake layers, plus smoothing and creating flowers with buttercream frosting. Everyone will leave with their own personal cake, cake stand and the tools to take their learnings and continue cake decorating at home. Get ticket.


Rosé & Macramé

Location: TOUCHGoods, Southold

Date: Thursday, Nov. 14

Time: 7  to 9 p.m.

Fee: $62

The Craft Series returns to Southold home goods store TOUCHGoods for another night of Rosé & Macramé, this time focusing on Boho wall hangings (guests made macrame planters at the last one).  Attendees will enjoy light bites and refreshing rosé while shop owner Norine Pennacchia guides them through making their very own boho style wall hanging. Add-ons like beads and feathers will also be available to help you further personalize your wall hanging. Get tickets.


Floral Design with Hometown Flower Co.

Hometown Flower Co. is teaching a class at RGNY. (Credit: Christie Monteleone)

Location: RGNY, Riverhead

Date: Sunday, Oct. 6

Time: noon to 2 p.m.

Fee: $85

Hometown Flower Co. is known for its roving retail flower shop (actually a vintage 1976 baby blue Ford pick-up truck), floral pop-ups and workshops. With this class held at RGNY (formerly Martha Clara), you will learn how to select, group, arrange and otherwise enjoy the perfect bouquet of flowers. The fee includes Hometown Flower Co.’s design expertise and floral knowledge, plus an array of flowers picked from the flower bar, all tools and supplies. You will also receive a vase plus Hometown Flower Co.’s signature Flowers in a Bag packaging to transport the design safety home. Guests will also receive one glass of wine plus charcuterie. Learn more.


Upsculpting with Cindy Pease Roe

Fusing upcycling with sculpture, local artist Cindy Pease Roe creates marine sculptures made from beach debris, teaching others to do the same in her non-profit UpSculpt workshops.

“This fall we’ll be creating baby whales out of liquor bottles and plastic debris found on beaches that can be used as holiday ornaments,” Roe said. “I supply the materials for the workshops, but also encourage people to do their own beach cleanup sessions before and bring found debris to the class. It’s educational, especially for people to do as a family.”

The two- or three-hour classes will be held both at Port of Egypt in Roe’s new UpSculpt studio and at The Sound View hotel, the latter which has recently added beach bins for discarded plastics and assorted debris just waiting to be turned into art. Several upcoming dates. Learn more.


Sunflower Table Basket

Location: Hallockville Museum Farm, Riverhead

Date: Saturday, Sept. 21

Time: 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Fee: $80 for members, $90 for non-members

Still dreaming about that North Fork sunflower maze? Turn that summer feeling into something permanent. Instructor Barbara Blossey-Chuvalas will teach how to create a dimensionally adorned sunflower table basket. The wooden base keeps it sturdy and long lasting, while leather handles give a rustic flair. A sunflower garland adds the finishing touch.

Supplies to bring: scissors, 20 spring-clip clothes pins, spray bottle, small flat head screwdriver, needle nose piers and a pencil. A $26 materials fee is due at the time of class, paid to the instructor. Get tickets.


Macrame Wine Tote Bag by WildRose Shop

Make a bottle of wine even better. (Credit: Meagan Dowling, WildRose Shop)

Location: Special Effects Salon & Spa, Greenport

Date: Sunday, Sept. 29

Time: 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Fee: $35

Want to make a bottle of wine even better? This class will give that housewarming gift or home display extra bragging rights.

“We’ve been partnering with WildRose Shop and the macrame events have been a hit,” said Victoria Schade, manager/events coordinator of Special Effects Salon. “We’re very excited for the latest, where each participant makes one macrame wine holder. Perfect for a housewarming gift, or just to keep for yourself.”

Each ticket includes supplies for one macrame tote, plus hands-on help from WildRose Shop owner Meagan Dowling. Beginners welcome. Ages 13 and up. Get tickets.