Pilot story and photos by Susan Schell

The smell of clay and glue wafted through the Chetco Senior Center; a dead giveaway that artisans were busy at work.

During the annual Homemaker Holiday crafts classes sponsored by Family Community Education, the eager students gathered around tables sprinkled with glitter, paint and yarn.

Nimble fingers and iron-clad patience turned household objects into colorful creations to decorate the home.

Teacher Vangie Andreason taught her students how to transform discarded plastic soda bottles into delicate butterflies that can be fashioned into a pin or a magnet.

Other art teachers shared their skills in crafting personalized greeting cards, gift bags and scrap books.

Students' frustration levels were taxed to the limit in the andquot;tattingandquot; class. Tatting is the art of weaving yarn into lace.

andquot;Patience and manual dexterity is the key,andquot; said teacher Beth Wiley, who mastered the art 16 years ago.

andquot;It took me a long time to learn it. I don't expect everyone to pick it up all the way. If you make a mistake you have to cut it out and start all over.andquot;

The classes were taught throughout the day and offered the students a chance to socialize in a relaxed atmosphere while picking up skills they could teach their children or grandchildren.