Photo: Britta Schellenberg

Kristen is a book binder. “I make notebooks with covers made out of old maps. I started making them as travel journals for myself, and then I realized that these kinds of things were selling in stores.

“A lot of people like maps for a lot of different reasons – mine was because of travel and fantasy travel, but the Rhode Island ones sell a lot too.”

Her background is in textiles, “which means I wear scarves most of the time. It’s one of my little addictions. I have so many, I’m like the Carrie Bradshaw of scarves.” She also makes scarves for friends. “I love creating something that will make them warm and cosy.”

Originally from New Jersey, she went to college in Philadelphia, then moved here in 1999. “When I arrived, I took some classes in bookbinding at RISD, and I’ve been doing it ever since.”

Kristen now works in Craftland, on the corner of Westminster and Union Streets, where everything on sale, including her map books, is handmade, mostly by local artists.

“Pretty much anything that has Rhode Island on it, people are psyched to buy. Our bestseller is a t-shirt that says “Don’t mess with Rhode Island either!”. We also have a toddler version of that.”

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