Contact: Liz Magee, SCMakerspace@lfpl.org
The COLLIDER Maker Lab at the South Central Regional Library location of the Louisville Free Public Library is a collaborative workspace for making, learning and exploring with high-tech and no-tech tools. It is housed within an architecturally stunning and eco-friendly LEED* Gold-certified facility that opened in 2017. The maker lab has a variety of maker equipment including a MakerBot 3-D printer, Cricut machine, Glowforge machine, Roland vinyl cutter, Adobe Creative suite design software, Janome sewing machines, button makers and more. After patrons complete a Maker 101 training, they are able to independently use the equipment during open hours held three days a week. The makerspace is open to adults, teens and kids (though children under age 13 must be accompanied by an adult). The space provides access to tools to support hobbyists, entrepreneurs or beginners looking to learn new skills. More in-depth classes on the different equipment are programmed for the calendar outside of the scheduled open hour times.
With various classes and open lab hours, numerous patrons have gained skills in sewing, 3-D design, vinyl cutting, laser cutting/engraving, and more. With access to the 3-D printer, many patrons have designed and printed novelty items, but many have also created practical items like phone stands, envelope openers, jewelry and belt buckles. One teacher 3-D printed shelf brackets to use for a building project with their students in the classroom. A teen bonded with an older adult they had never met before as they both designed 3-D print models for the first time. Cricut machine users have created personalized tote bags, t-shirts, tumblers and wall décor. One adult created all of their holiday gifts with the Cricut. Advanced and beginning sewers alike have worked on bag-making, quilting and clothing alterations. Two teens first used our sewing machines to make hair scrunchies and then took an introduction to quilting class to make trivets. The laser cutter/engraver has been a popular tool for patrons looking for gifts to give to family and friends. One adult made their spouse a surprise gift: an engraved sign promoting their homemade breads for their farmer’s market booth. The button makers have allowed many patrons to make mementos. They’ve used family photos to make magnets, sports photos to make buttons to support their student athletes and various other artwork for family reunions or holidays. The projects being created in the Maker Lab are always changing as more people use the space, but it’s very exciting to see all of the different possibilities! More details can be found online: lfpl.org/makerspace/.