Living and Thriving as a Craftsperson in Boston

May 17, 2024
Timon Kaple



Thriving as a Craftsperson in Boston: A Guide for Aspiring Artisans

Woodworking student measuring a piece of wood with a combination square

Boston offers a unique blend of historical charm and modern convenience, making it an ideal place for aspiring artisans and craftspeople. If you’re pursuing a career as a creative individual, the City’s vibrant community and rich history provide the perfect backdrop for cultivating your skills and making meaningful connections.

For those stepping into the world of hands-on professions, the opportunity to connect with like-minded individuals is plentiful. Here’s how you can make the most of it:

  • Join Local Nonprofits and Societies: Organizations like Society of Arts & Crafts, Artisans Asylum, Boston Makers, and The Women’s Jewelry Association provide fantastic opportunities to meet fellow craftspeople. These groups often host events, workshops, and seminars where you can learn new techniques and make professional connections. You can also find a great network of makers on platforms such as Meetup.
  • Attend Artisan Fairs and Craft Shows: Boston hosts numerous craft fairs and artisan markets throughout the year. These events are great for showcasing your work, meeting other artists, and connecting with potential mentors and collaborators. CraftBoston, the Greenway Artisan Market, and the Trustees Craft Festival are just a few, with dozens more happening in Boston and throughout New England each year.
  • Volunteer in Community Projects: Engaging in local projects or installations not only enhances your skills, but also puts you in touch with artisans and the broader community. Opportunities to volunteer are abundant in a city like Boston. This list provides a great starting point for exploration, and your local community group or nearby nonprofits will certainly have more to add.
  • Connect Through Hands-On Classes At NBSS, we offer over 150 short workshops each year through our community education program. Divided into disciplines— woodworking, carpentry, jewelry, book arts, and weaving/textiles—they offer new and experienced students a wide variety of options to explore. If those don’t fit your interests, there are many more possibilities throughout the region. (Pottery, knitting, or glassblowing anyone?) Workshops like these offer both a great experience and the chance to connect with others who are similarly exploring all that Boston has to offer its artisans.

North Bennet Street School: A Community of Craftspeople

Jeweler cutting a round ring with a saw at a jeweler's bench

At North Bennet Street School, we provide an education in craftsmanship and are keen on fostering community too. In our programs and classes, you are surrounded by like-minded individuals who are eager to learn hands-on skills. What’s more, our facilities are designed to foster creativity and collaboration, allowing you to train with professionals with deep experience and a passion for their work.

Students here don’t just learn a trade or skill—they join a lifelong community of artisans. Whether you are a local or moving to Boston to pursue your passion, you will find that the School and the City offer an environment where both your craft and your connections can flourish.