An artistic approach


The Artisans at the Dahmen Barn provide the community with many opportunities to learn new crafting skills. This weekend, they will host a workshop to teach visitors how to make block prints from linoleum.

Linoleum is not often associated with beauty, but beautiful art can be created from linoleum, ink and paper.

Linoleum block printing is an artistic technique coming to the Palouse this weekend.

Many middle schools and high schools teach their students linoleum block printing, but sometimes those lessons fade over time. The Artisans at the Dahmen Barn are offering a linoleum block printing workshop to teach, or reteach, you how.

“This easy technique that can be used with any theme to create art or cards or fabric pieces that can be incorporated into unique items such as tote bags, quilts or garments,” said Leslee Miller, the manager of Artisans at the Dahmen Barn.

You don’t have to be an artist to be able to do this. Block prints can be made with a 4-by-6 photo to reference, a hemp-backed piece of linoleum, a cutting tool, ink and paper.

“It is essentially negative space carving (in linoleum). The hardest part is knowing what to cut and what not to cut, but Laurel (Macdonald) is there to help walk everyone through it,” said Julie Hartwig, a former attendant of the workshop and current employee of the Dahmen Barn.

The process is simple and inexpensive, but requires some muscle and attention to detail to do properly. Most of the supplies needed are common household items. You can reuse the same print multiple times, creating many originals of the same image with less effort.

“The (linoleum block printing) is a way to recycle linoleum and keep linoleum out of landfills … If you have to paint something, you only have one painting, but if you make a print, you can use the same print multiple times,” said Laurel Macdonald, the instructor of the Block Printing Workshop.

The hour-long workshop can be spent on a single piece or several prints. The Artisans at the Dahmen Barn encourages eager artists to join the workshop to learn a new skill.

“We just want folks to have a good time, and to recognize that everyone is creative,” said Debi Robinson-Smith, an Artisan at the Dahmen Barn. “Coming away from the workshop with a successful project is so empowering.”

The Block Printing Workshop is $39 for materials and will go from 1 – 4 p.m. Saturday at the Artisans at the Dahmen Barn in Uniontown. Register at the Artisans at the Dahmen Barn website by Friday.