Maker Faire and September Newsletter

Good news everyone!

Bellingham Maker Faire 2021 will be hosted by Bellingham Makerspace on October 9 at Bellis Fair. Maker Faire is a gathering of artists, crafters, engineers, students and scientists — “Makers” — to share what they can do. We are now looking for Makers of all kinds to take part in Maker Faire – the Greatest Show and Tell on Earth. Click Here to apply as a presenter! Act soon, spaces are limited.

We also have just sent out our newsletter for September. In it we discuss the Maker Faire, and several big changes happening at our organization. Our Founder Mary Elliott has decided after seven years she is ready to step down as the Executive Director. She has written a letter for all of our members and supporters which you can read here. In her place, Tina Stroh will be stepping in as our new Interim Executive Director. We also discuss some of the new classes and communication methods that we are adding.

You can read the full newsletter here. The full description and message from the Board of Directors regarding the improvements and changes that will be coming to the Makerspace in the months ahead is also available here.

Bellingham Makerspace Volunteer Appreciation Event!

To all our wonderful Makerspace Volunteers,

The Bellingham Makerspace is holding our very first Volunteer Appreciation event since moving into our new location in Bellis Fair. As all of our volunteers know, the Makerspace would not exist without the wonderful efforts of our volunteer members, who help us introduce new people to our space, organize and maintain our tools, share their knowledge with the community, and help us promote and raise awareness of the great facilities and capabilities we offer to the public here in Whatcom county.

We have a very special evening planned coming up on Thursday, September 2 for our volunteer members.  We have reserved the 1-UP Lounge in Fairhaven from 6pm to 8pm, and we’ll be able to continue to hang out afterwards if people want to stick around.  There will be good drinks, free pizza, and lots and lots of fun retro video games to play.  It’s going to be a great time, so RSVP and invite your plus 1.

Looking forward to seeing you there!

  Here’s the link to the (free) event tickets on Eventbrite:


Makerspace Manager

Phase 2 and the Makerspace reopening plan

Whatcom County has re-entered Phase 2 of the state Safe Start protocols to help stop the spread of Covid-19. This means we are preparing to reopen to the public for walk-in tours and classes can be offered for more than one person at a time.

For the last few months, since the end of November, the Bellingham Makerspace has been open by appointment only, and classes have been limited to on-on-one only. Now that we have entered Phase 2, class sized are increased to four. Also, we are recruiting volunteers and planning to be open to tours and day use again for the general public.

Tool reservations are still requested for members and can be made the same way they have been, using the Reserve Tool Time link on the My Account page of the Makerspace website.

Classes, Holiday update

We are currently offering one-on-one instruction on how to use the wide range of tools available at the space. You can find class and teacher contact information on the Makerspace website. Many people are interested in learning new skills during this period of economic uncertainty. The Makerspace has the space, the tools, and friendly experts to help.

Due to COVID restrictions and concern for the safety of our volunteers, the Makerspace is open to members by appointment only. Anyone can become a member by signing up on the Makerspace website, and members can make reservations online.  When COVID restrictions ease, the Makerspace will return to regular open hours for the general public, expanded scheduling for Makerspace members, and offering events for the community.

While many people are working and learning from home, the Makerspace is creating kits to offer a fun and simple set of activities for children or adults to explore the joy of making creative things. Soon you will also be able to go to the Makerspace online store to buy craft kits that can be picked up and completed at home.  Artisan created merchandise will be available as well.

The Makerspace will be closed for the holidays, on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, and on New Years Eve and New Years Day. We wish you a happy holiday and creativity in the year ahead!

Makerspace update on COVID policy changes

Due to the recent spike in COVID cases, The Makerspace is changing our operation policies
As the case numbers across the state and the nation have surged in the last several weeks, the governor has announced new guidelines for business operation and asked that all people avoid gathering in groups and stay home as much as possible.
How we are changing to comply and assist: Starting November 17th, the following policies and changes will be implemented for public safety by the Bellingham Makerspace:

– The retail area, including walk-ins from the mall, will be closed to the general public until further notice. The classroom common area will also be closed.

– Classes are cancelled for the time being, refunds will be issued, and future events are on hold. Existing members will be allowed to reserve time at least 24 hours in advance to use tools through the reservation calendar.

– Resident members will be allowed to use their own spaces, provided they follow all updated COVID safety precautions, and interactions are to be kept to a minimum.

– Volunteer shop host shifts will not be needed while the retail area is closed. Other volunteer opportunities may be available from home.

– Continue to practice health department recommendations of regular sanitizing of hands, tools and surfaces, mask wearing at all times indoors, and maintaining social distance.

We are currently seeking further guidance from the Governor’s office to ensure we are following all of the state recommendations and guidelines as intended. We will update our members and followers of any changes to our policies as needed to ensure safety and compliance are our top priority.

Thankfully, we have a very large space and these measures will allow us to operate well below 25% of our capacity. This is a challenging time for us all, and we are glad to have this supportive community even if we must maintain as much distance as possible until this pandemic passes.

In the meantime, we hope to continue to offer content by providing links to activities that can be done at home, lessons online, and sharing of the many ways the Bellingham Makerspace and Makers around the world make the world a better place. If you have input or ideas on how we can continue to provide for our community remotely please let us know. Stay safe, stay home, and we hope to see you when we can safely open again!

Mary Elliott
Executive Director
Bellingham Makerspace

The Makerspace is Open in Bellis Fair!

Bellingham Makerspace is ready to announce that we have completed our relocation and renovation, and are now proudly open once again to the public in our new, larger location in Bellis Fair!

Our location is in unit 618, adjacent to the Dick’s Sporting Goods entrance. We are open from 1:00 pm to 7:00 pm on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday and from 12:00 pm to 5:00 pm on Saturday and Sunday.

The front door is open and we are accepting new members, offering tours and classes to anyone who is interested in learning to make stuff. You can find details about classes, membership or volunteering on our website.

Tools and capabilities include: woodworking, 3d printing, laser cutting and engraving for wood and acrylic, vinyl cutting for stencils and stickers, large format printing, electronics workbenches, sewing machines, CNC machining, metalworking, ceramics, and screen printing.

Monthly membership gives you access to the Makerspace, online resources, computers, and discounts on classes. It also helps us keep the machines in good working order for the community to use.

New features of the space include: studio space for small businesses, a classroom that can be reserved for teaching small classes or events, and retail space in the mall for our members.

It has been an amazing transition, thanks to the hard work of dozens of dedicated volunteers. The Makerspace has more to offer now than it ever has. Stop by, meet some friends, and make cool stuff!

Update on Masks

The Makerspace has been passing on masks free of charge. Everyone has been wonderful donating material and their time. Now that the CDC has recommended that everyone wear a face covering, the Makerspace is not able to keep up with the demand, even with all the lovely people in the community sewing the way they are.

Another important issue is that raw materials are getting short of supply. Therefore I have recruited some local small businesses to help with the efforts. These small businesses are not able to obtain materials without buying them – especially since everyone in the nation is in this same situation. The small businesses also have employees that they would like to not have to lay off. Most companies that are in need of large numbers of masks would actually be buying them if they were readily available.

By buying materials, and purchasing things through our local businesses, not only are we getting protective equipment into people’s hands, but we are also supporting local businesses – who in turn can then pay their employees who are our friends and neighbors. Moving forward, this not only protects people’s health but also people’s jobs and livelihood.

I understand that some organizations may not be in a position to purchase masks. If that is the case, please contact us and we can donate masks to that team. Please understand that pulling in the local upholstery industry (and soon seamstresses, etc) is an effort to both protect people’s health and their livelihood.