GOLDEN VALLEY, Minn. - The holiday season can be a joyous, but often stressful, time - especially when it comes to shopping for gifts.
However, you don't have to spend time searching the mall or browsing Amazon for the perfect present. There are plenty of spots across Minnesota and western Wisconsin where you can create a gift from the heart for your loved ones.
Here are five places to check out:
Clay Coyote, Hutchinson
Through December 12, you can visit Clay Coyote Gallery and Pottery in Hutchinson to create your own holiday ornaments. There's only space for eight ornament makers at a time, so make sure you sign up early. You can bring your own drinks and snacks to enjoy while you work. The ornaments are $10 each and you can make more than one.
SkyLab Glass Arts, Golden Valley
Try out the fascinating art of lampworking, or making glass with a torch or lamp, at SkyLab Glass Arts in Golden Valley. There are a variety of classes, including some for beginners. During the holiday season, they are even offering holiday ornament classes for $50. Artists can also rent space in the studio in three, six or nine hour blocks.
Upstairs Circus, Minneapolis
If you want to create something special but aren't quite sure what to make, Upstairs Circus is the place to go. From jewelry to art to home decor, there are a variety of different projects. The best part? There's a full bar, so you can get your drink on while you craft. You can find a list of the current projects here.
Kari's Create & Paint Studio, Stillwater
If painting is your jam, you can paint your own pottery or canvas at Kari's Create and Paint Studio in Stillwater. Every Friday and Saturday, they offer "Happy Hour" painting; if you start between 6 and 7 p.m., you get 20 percent off your purchase. There's a full calendar of events on their website here, and you can also book parties.
Mercury Mosaics, Minneapolis
It's a bit more advanced than your average art class, but the product is undeniably unique and beautiful. Mercury Mosaics in Minneapolis offers beginner mosaics classes where you can create a trivet, mirror or wall panel. The class costs $80, but all materials are provided. Sign up for a class here.