SHOP CLASS AS SOULCRAFT

SHOP CLASS AS SOULCRAFT

On May 21,2009, Matthew B. Crawford published an article in The New York Times Magazine titled, “The Case for Working With Your Hands.” Later that month, Shop Class as Soulcraft: An Inquiry Into the Value of Work arrived on my desk at work.

Three paragraphs down in the New York Times piece, Crawford describes our situation:

“High-school shop-class programs were widely dismantled in the 1990s as educators prepared students to become “knowledge workers.” The imperative of the last 20 years to round up every warm body and send it to college, then to the cubicle, was tied to a vision of the future in which we somehow take leave of material reality and glide about in a pure information economy. This has not come to pass. To begin with, such work often feels more enervating than gliding. More fundamentally, now as ever, somebody has to actually do things: fix our cars, unclog our toilets, build our houses.”

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THE FACTORY | THIS WEEK 3.2.2015 – 3.7.2015

The Factory This Week

“It’s easy to make a buck. It’s a lot tougher to make a difference.” – Tom Brokaw

Here is what we have going on this week, Monday, March 2 – Saturday, March 7:

STORE

Our favorite A. Chanin pieces—including the V-Neck Tank, Long Sleeve Raglan, and Racerback Tunic—have been restocked in various sizes and colors, perfect for layering through the last bit of winter.

Join us in our studio space for First Mondays to work on your latest sewing project in the company of fellow sewers. Coffee, tea and light breakfast will be available for purchase from The Factory Café.

Join us Thursday for our first Makeshift Dinner of 2015, featuring special ingredients and recipes from Zingerman’s with special guest Ari Weinzweig, Co-Founding Partner and CEO of Zingerman’s Community of Businesses.

We will be hosting a Two-Hour Business Workshop on Friday, presented by Zingerman’s Ari Weinzweig. Ari will share his approach to business that has led Zingerman’s to success.

Try out a new free Craftsy sewing class here.

STORE HOURS

Monday – Friday, 9:00am – 5:00pm
Saturday, 10:00am – 4:00pm

TOURS

Stop by any weekday at 2:00pm for a guided tour of our space, including The Factory, the Alabama Chanin production and design studio, and Building 14.

CAFÉ

Join us for lunch at The Factory Café this week and try our customer-favorite Petite Homemade Meatloaf.

Also don’t forget to take a look in our cooler—fully stocked with homemade ready-to-go items like pimento cheese and our carrot and ginger soup.

We offer freshly baked whole cakes as well. Our cakes are made from scratch, fresh from the oven. Please provide 24 hours’ notice when placing an order.

Custom catering is now available for all events and occasions. Work directly with our head chef, Zach Chanin, and the Alabama Chanin team to create a menu tailored to your needs.

Café Hours:
Monday – Saturday, 11:00am – 2:00pm
*Lunch service begins at 11:00am but coffee and snacks are available all day.

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SATURDAY BRUNCH + THE WEEK IN REVIEW

Saturday Brunch + The Week in Review

Join us tomorrow, February 28, for Saturday Brunch at The Factory Café. This week’s Brunch features our favorite Factory Benedict topped with fried salami and sriracha hollandaise sauce.

As always, we will have selection of seasonal choices that highlight products from local and regional farms and purveyors.

View our Saturday Brunch menu here or check below.

Saturday Store Hours: 10:00am – 4:00pm
Café Hours: 11:00am – 2:00pm

The Factory Store + Café
462 Lane Drive
Florence, Alabama 35630

Call us: +1.256.760.1090 or email office (at) alabamachanin.com

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MARCH + SWATCH OF THE MONTH

MARCH + SWATCH OF THE MONTH

February is technically a short month, but it was so fast and furious that I had to make conscious efforts to be mindful AND productive. March looks to be just as busy, but in the best way—full of things I want to do and people I want to see.

It is National Women’s History month, so we hope you will take time to revisit some of our favorite stories of Real Women and to share your own.

Here is what March looks like for me (deep breath):

March 2 – Dr. Seuss’ birthday, now known as Read Across America day. I’m currently working on several books, among them: The Optimistic Child by Martin E. P. Seligman, Encyclopedia of Needlework by Thérèse de Dillmont (in research for a possible new book on the tools of handwork), and revisiting Mary Renault’s The Last of the Wine.

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MAKESHIFT DINNER SERIES (PAST AND PRESENT)

MAKESHIFT DINNER SERIES (PAST AND PRESENT)

Last year, we launched our Friends of the Café Dinner and Factory Chef Series, which was quickly established as part of our Makeshift initiative. As with most things here at Alabama Chanin, the idea evolved over time from an interesting idea into something bigger. In 2015, we are continuing to host Friends of the Café dinners, combined with a corresponding workshop series—a branch of The School of Making. The series will combine our celebration of slow, sustainable, and inventive food with our ongoing conversations on craft, design, food, making, and community.

The initial idea for this series was simple—each month, The Factory Café would feature seasonal dishes inspired by regional chefs (or restaurants) that shared our values of celebrating place, artisanal craftsmanship, and good food.

MAKESHIFT DINNER SERIES (PAST AND PRESENT)

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INSPIRATION: PEWTER

INSPIRATION PEWTER

Pewter: a malleable metal alloy of tin, copper, antimony, bismuth and sometimes, silver or lead.

Early civilizations like the Chinese, Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans are known to have used this soft metal in jewelry and tableware.

It is a rich shade of gray that has remarkable depth and presence.

A commonly used material in the Art Nouveau and Arts and Crafts periods.

Molten and cast

Polished or tarnished

A lustrous silvery-grey with purple and umber highlights

Pewter glows.

For a limited time our A. Chanin Long Sleeve Scoopneck and A. Chanin Fitted Rib Tank are available in Pewter. Today only, enjoy 20% off all available colors of each style.

And visit our Collection for a range of styles in our color Pewter.

Pewter-New-Leaves

P.S.: Click for more inspiration: pewter table ware and decor from The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s extensive online collection and Christie’s Auction House

TREND VS. SUCCESSION

TRENDS VS. SUCCESSION

”From a scientific point of view, it can be said he [Thoreau] documented for the first time how ecological succession works … The mechanism was animals and weather. Squirrels carry acorns so oak trees replace pine when the pines are cut down. And pine seeds blow over to replace the oak.” – Richard T. Forman

I started writing this piece about two weeks ago. I was talking about succession over trend with a colleague and she asked me to put down my thoughts about how that worked. And so I started…and as I was writing, the question of trend began to appear in the press and this story seems on one hand less important and on the other hand more important. I’ll let you be the judge. In any case, thank you for coming here. Thank you for reading:

There is a small stop at milepost 330.2 on the Natchez Trace Parkway called Rock Spring Nature Trail. I’ve been going to this spot on the Natchez Trace since I was a little girl. Perk, my maternal grandfather, used to take me (and all of the cousins) there en route to Colbert Ferry park on the “other side” of the Tennessee River from our home. From there, we would launch his small fishing boat and run the trotline of baited hooks for catfish (more on this boat and Perk’s trotline coming soon).

Rock Spring is a natural aquifer that merges with Colbert Creek where this nature trail now stands. The creek is a small, meandering stream of rare beauty (see the photo above)—named after George Colbert—who ran the Ferry that crossed the Tennessee River along the Trace before the days of a bridge.

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THE FACTORY | THIS WEEK 2.23.2015 – 2.28.2015

SEWING-MACHINE-2W

“I’m convinced of this, good done anywhere is good done everywhere…” – Maya Angelou

Here is what we have going on around The Factory this week, Monday, February 2 – Friday, February 6:

STORE

Our A. Chanin Long Sleeve Scoopneck and Fitted Rib Tank are now available in Pewter for a limited time.

Join us on Thursday, March 5th for dinner, featuring special ingredients and recipes from Zingerman’s with special guest Ari Weinzweig, Co-Founding Partner and CEO of Zingerman’s Community of Busineses. Cocktails begin at 6:30pm and will be followed by dinner at 7:30pm. Reserve your tickets here.

Reserve your tickets now for our Two-Hour Business Workshop with guest Ari Weinzweig. Ari will be sharing the approach to business that has led to Zingerman’s success. Tickets include training materials, presentations from Ari, roundtable discussions, and lunch from The Factory Café.

STORE HOURS

Monday – Friday, 9:00am – 5:00pm
Saturday, 10:00am – 4:00pm

TOURS

Stop by any weekday at 2:00pm for a guided tour of our space, including The Factory, the Alabama Chanin production and design studio, and Building 14.

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SATURDAY BRUNCH + THE WEEK IN REVIEW

Saturday Brunch + The Week in Review

Join us tomorrow, February 21, for Saturday Brunch at The Factory Café. This week’s Brunch features our favorite Farm Breakfast with your choice of either bacon or a Big Bad Breakfast sausage patty or our French Toast made from fresh ciabatta bread.

As always, we will have selection of seasonal choices that highlight products from local and regional farms and purveyors.

View our Saturday Brunch menu here or check below.

Saturday Store Hours: 10:00am – 4:00pm.
Café Hours: 11:00am – 2:00pm.

The Factory Store + Café
462 Lane Drive
Florence, Alabama 35630

Call us: +1.256.760.1090 or email office (at) alabamachanin.com

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