Our Mission

Craftsman & Apprentice is a community of makers and educators who believe in the power of creative build-play and handcraft traditions. We provide community-based creative experiences that deepen our connection to ourselves, each other, and the world around us. By pairing the right tools, materials, and instruction with creativity and the freedom to make mistakes, we create safe places where kids thrive, succeed, and fail with the confidence of knowing that it’s all part of the process.

Education is radically about love

– Paolo Fiere

We mean it. Learning happens when we feel safe, loved, and cared for. We are dedicated to making sure that our programming is inclusive, adaptable, and accessible. Each year we set a goal to ensure that at least 20% of our programming reaches traditionally underserved populations at a little or no cost to participants. We do this through grant partnerships with local nonprofits, government agencies like libraries, museums, and schools, as well as drawing from our own dedicated reserve funds. We make every effort to say yes whenever a child is in need of programming regardless of their caregiver’s ability to pay.

In addition to our financial equity in access position, we are also committed to ensuring that our ship kiddos participate in programming that honors their unique personhood. This includes our teachers having a deep understanding and respect for children’s neurodiversity, physical diversity, cultural and linguistic diversity, as well as their gender and sexual orientation. While craftsman is in our name, our programming is non-gendered as we truly believe that making things is for everyone. We do our very best to adapt, innovate, and meet each kiddo where they’re at with love and respect.

We are dedicated to making sure that our programming is inclusive, adaptable, and accessible.

Testimonials

  • My daughter cannot wait to go back! She loved it and ranks it above all else for camps.

    – Kelly P

  • Delanie! Her willingness to help and yet empower the kids to complete their projects and help clean up is awesome!

    – Stephanie A

  • My son said it was just the best, he had a really good time and that’s all that matters!

    – Lori T

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Our Story

When we first began to think about opening Craftsman & Apprentice, my husband, Jon and I would talk at length about what we love about being makers. Jon is a master stonemason who learned his trade over the course of many years as an apprentice. We would ask ourselves questions like, how do we know what we know and how do we do our best work? We also talked about all the things we’ve loved about being part of a creative community here in Denver for 20 years. When we boiled it all down, we came to the realization that making things and learning how to make things with our hands is best done in community; in real life proximity to other people all learning and creating together while we change and grow over time. When we learn from each other, we all benefit. It’s human nature to build upon the practices and innovations of others. These are the founding principles to our work at Craftsman & Apprentice.

Seven years on and we’ve hosted thousands of workshops, camps, and classes not just in our little shop but all over the Front Range at museums, libraries, schools, and businesses. We’ve collaborated with dozens of the best makers, teachers, and craftspeople in the state and built a staff of six dedicated teachers.