Innovation That Matters

Gallery shop in Chinese mall teaches woodworking


A new concept store in Shanghai’s Joy City Shopping Mall offers customers beginner woodworking classes.

Many artisanal skills are at risk as the numbers of practitioners decline. Subscription services for everything from lip balms to ice cream are a popular way to help creators earn a living. In Shanghai’s Joy City Shopping Mall, Zowoo (‘make objects’ in Mandarin) allows shoppers to combine two enthusiasms – making and shopping. Customers can browse through the gallery, buying handcrafted pieces made from woods such as maple, cherry and ash. For shoppers wanting a more tactile experience, the store offers a range of carpentry and woodworking classes.

Beginner courses teach participants how to make small items such as chopsticks, bracelets and wooden lamps. More advanced courses guide students through the process of making larger items, such as stools, tables and wooden horses. The cost of a class ranges from USD 19 to more than USD 200 depending on the size and complexity of the item made. Students keep their creations.

How could other popular public spaces encourage creative handcrafting?



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