So, Happy New Year, all !!!
Notice the quotation marks in the title ? Yeah, not a typo, sadly. Actually I felt that the way the term 'craft' (and 'crafting') is being used lately made it necessary to qualify the word slightly. Do not get me wrong: I know it is a great trend at the moment, and I wholeheartedly support anybody who gets up and makes anything with their own hands rather than purchasing a mass produced product. Equally, I am aware that ability and dare I say talent are not evenly distributed, so the first garter stitch scarf knitted by person A might mean a whole lot more than yet another 20 colour fair isle jumper produced by person B.
But I feel the way this trend has been bandied about and presented in the press lately leaves a lot to be desired. Ok, it needs to be accessible, people need to feel like they can be part of something without committing to a 5 year intensive learning curve - I totally get that. But pressing a motive out of a die cast sheet and sticking it onto a pre-folded piece of card does not make you a master card maker. It certainly doesn't make you creative, regardless of what the manufacturers of certain craft product would have you believe.
I collect vintage craft books, and I have learnt the bare essentials of what I do from both of my grandmothers and my mother. Based on this and the assumption that I do not happen to stem from a long line of household paragons, I would say it's safe to assume that the average skill level has somehow diminished over the decades. That is totally understandable; neither of my grandmothers would probably have been able to send an email, and I wouldn't want my mother let loose on Photoshop, so something's got to give.
But each time I see somebody write about "crafting" as if it's this amazing new thing that is 'so now', and each time I see someone trying to sell a badly stapled-together piece of tat on Etsy with the air of offering a great artisan piece, a little voice inside me wants to just scream and scream until it all disappears.
Feel free to use the comments to discuss, I would love to hear (read?) your take on this.