One local shop jumps on-board South Bend's revitalizing arts project

The City of South Bend has recently been experiencing a bit of a Renaissance, as city leaders have been focusing on arts and culture to revitalize the area. 

A new South Bend shop is following suit by helping residents get in touch with their artistic side. 

It is called Make South Bend, and it has been open for three weeks.

They said the idea came from their passion for art and wanted to have a place where artists could come together and produce.

“Shop local” is the motto at the little shop in South Bend.

“It's especially good to have people come in and try things for the first time,” said Nathaniel FitzGerald, co-owner of the shop.

Whether it is buying or creating, Make South Bend is like a high school shop class.

“We have a variety of different stations,” said FitzGerald.

From jewelry making to painting and sculpting, FitzGerald said they are there to help revive a struggling hobby.

“It's important to do that and to make things and to create things, especially with your own hands. It's a dying art,” said FitzGerald.

They also want to help revive a struggling city.

The shop's goal falls right in line with the city's: to build interest around arts and culture. 

The interest is there, it is proven with sites like Etsy and Pinterest, but in South Bend, it is the utensils to make the goods that are not always available.

Now they are.

“There's a very large artistic community in South Bend, in Mishawaka, and the surrounding area, but it's kind of fractured,” said FitzGerald.

It is a wound FitzGerald hopes is healed in the workshop.

“We have the artists for it, they're just not connected yet,” said FitzGerald.

So, whether it is connecting the artists with the art, or the consumer with Michiana-made goods, Make South Bend is an effort to bring the creativity out in the local economy.

“Because there isn't really a place to come and buy locally made goods or locally made music,” said FitzGerald.

The shop offers classes in ceramics, painting and drawing, machine sewing, and offers a wire class, you can visit the store or the store's website to get a quote on prices.
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