Arts & craft nirvana in Portland, Oregon

Portland, Oregon Iknew this was no ordinary trip when I got on the hotel shuttle at Portland International Airport. Two nicely dressed women about my age shared it with me, and for the first minute or two we sat in silence, like every other shuttle rider. Then one woman furtively looked around and said, "So . . . are you guys here for art camp?" We were, and we had flown in from around the country to attend Art & Soul, a six-day art-and-craft retreat at an Embassy Suites hotel near the airport. The retreat featured workshops in mixed-media collage, jewelry, book arts, painting, drawing, fiber and fabric crafts, and doll making. But more than just classes fueled our arty fire: The...