Open For Business Closes Out With A Bang

By Cathy Niland | 5.11.2022

Over the past four months, The Crucible’s founding Open For Business cohort—Amy Alaman, Brandyn Willridge, Cori Pillows, and Komoia Johnson—have been building new skills in the industrial arts while growing their businesses. With help from faculty mentors, participants explored techniques in woodturning, moldmaking, jewelry casting, welding, glass flameworking, stone setting, and more. 

Last Friday, friends, family, and Crucible community members gathered to celebrate the culmination of our Open For Business pilot program. During the event, each participant presented their unique collections ad shared plans for the future of their brands.

Open For Business spring 2022

“I learned to use the tools I needed to create my vision,” shared Cori PIllows while standing alongside her hand-crafted wooden creations. “I plan to have a full home decor line and am looking forward to offering everything from framed paintings to cutting boards.”

Not only did program participants leave with a wealth of new knowledge and a brand new collection of work, they also left with tools, materials, and connections they can use to sustain their business. “There’s no price I could put on what I got out of this,” shared Amy. “In terms of the materials and the tools that I’m going to keep, I’m blown away. I just feel like it was so abundant in this unexpected way and a lot of incubators don’t have that.”

To help our founding cohort continue to scale their brand, we’ve invited them to join our CREATE program, relaunching this summer. Through CREATE, Amy, Brandyn, Cori, and Komoia will have continued access to The Crucible’s studio and tools.

“We couldn’t have started with a better, more talented group of people,” shared Executive Director, Susan Mernit during the event. “We see this as the beginning of our relationship. Everyone is invited to continue creating at The Crucible.”

Applications for our summer Open For Business cohort are now open. If you know a BIPOC Bay Area artist looking to expand their product line and brand, please share our Open For Business page. Applications close Monday, August 1.

Join our next Open For Business cohort

Applications for our 2022 Fall program close Monday, August 1.

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