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5 Steps for Planning a Creative Retreat

creativity live your life Aug 30, 2022

A huge part of my self-care routine is a yearly weekend retreat with a few of my best friends. Together, we take time to relax + recharge, have deep + meaningful conversations, and we create!

We are all creators in one form or other. From mixed media + altered art projects, to knitting + sewing, to writing, to working with porcelain. We each have our areas of expertise and we're always learning from each other. We all love to try new projects + techniques and getting creative is a way we all love to fill our cups back up!

But coming together each year requires a bit of planning. It's really not difficult and anyone can do it. Today I want to share with you the steps you can take to put together your own creative retreat. 


1) Gather your friends

The friends you love to spend time and create with are the perfect choice for a weekend of recharging + creation. It shouldn't take you too long to figure out who those people are and if they would be a good match for this.

Reach out to them and see if this is something they would consider doing. In my experience, a small group of 4 or 5 is the ideal number, but depending on the people in your circle, this number can certainly be different. 

The important thing is to choose people you can see yourself spending 3 or 4 days with. 


2) Choose a date + location

Once you've got your people on board, it's time to start planning out the details. We all have responsibilities, whether it be family or work, and it can be a challenge to find a time that suits everyone. 

List out your options and see what works best for everyone. In the past, our group would get together during the Thanksgiving weekend in October, but we've since changed to Labour Day weekend in September. 

As a mom, it's a perfect time for me to recharge before getting back into the school routine again. 

Finding a location during the off-season is easier for us as well. Seeing that we live in a very touristy region, it's much easier and more affordable to find a suitable location. Renting a cottage is perfect as it allows for plenty of space to craft and hangout.


3) Plan some projects

Seeing as this is a creative retreat, it's good to plan out a couple of projects you can do as a group. You can choose to learn something new together, or someone in the group might want to take the reigns on a project and teach a new crafting skill to the group.

For instance, at our retreat last year, one of my friends brought her kiln and we all painted some porcelain pieces. It was a lot of fun and great to learn something new. 

Another year, we all learned how to use alcohol inks and we created lanterns from old glass bottles. Whatever you choose, it doesn't have to be anything complicated. Just something fun and different.

Something we always do in the project department is bring art journaling + mixed media supplies. This is all something we enjoy doing and this is the perfect weekend to dust off our own projects that have been sitting on the shelf for a while.

As far as art supplies goes you can create a master list of all the supplies you'll need and decide who will bring what. As a group, we have a variety of materials and generally have all that we need for the weekend.


4) Plan the food

Depending on your group and everyone's personalities, you can choose to go all out with food or keep it simple. 

Personally, we like to keep it simple and love to do munchies for the most part. We're usually close to a small town so it's easy to go out for a meal or two during the weekend.  

What we've found works best is for each of us to bring the things we like to eat and go from there. Usually there is way more food than we can eat!


5)  Have fun + relax

This is the best part! This weekend is about relaxing, recharging your batteries, connecting with your besties, and creating! I always feel refreshed and reconnected to myself after these retreats. I highly recommend them to anyone who needs to do just that.

And if you think you're too busy or that your family can't do without you for a weekend, then you absolutely need to do this!! 


Are you ready?

Now that you know the steps to creating a successful creative retreat, are you ready to start planning? I've created a free workbook for you so you can start planning today. You can access it in the Life Design Library HERE.

If you have any questions about this process, don't hesitate to leave your questions in the comments or email me directly at [email protected]. I'd love to hear from you!

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