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Saturday, January 18, 2014

Craft in America

"My family was an aspiring family. The worst thing that could happen to us was to fall into the poverty of the homemade."  I wonder how many people felt this way, yet went on to become masters at their homemade and now sell it for great profit.

This statement was made by a carver on "Holiday," a PBS episode of Craft in America. There are 11 episodes, so maybe you will have free time after the first of the year.

I was watching episode XI, "Holiday," when I wrote this. The series is fascinating. Eventually, I will watch the other 10 episodes.

At the top of the page is a "change station" button. Right now, this is PBS in Alabama.

Your turn
What crafts do you practice? Can you see a beginning from your youth or in your cultural heritage. Does practicing a craft fulfill a deep need? Does it make you happy? Take away stress?

13 comments:

  1. I got a malware warning this morning when attempting to access your blog. It worked fine now so not sure what was going on this morning.

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  2. Linda I also received the message again this evening.

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    1. Jane and Janet,
      Thanks. If your system is warning you and allowing you to proceed, you are safe. However, I am still working on it.

      Delete
  3. I came from a snobby art environment and crafting was not considered "art." I am going to look out for that program!

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    1. Alex,
      I was a vendor and "artists" did look down on the rest of us. You can click on that link and go straight to it. Then, save it. Oh, you mean on TV? Okay. Hope you enjoy it.

      Delete
  4. I love crafting. My favorite is papercrafting. I love making my own hand stamped cards. I also quilt. Actually, I love pretty much all things home economic except needle crafts. (Crocheting,knitting, embroidery, garment sewing.) Stamping and quilting give me more pleasure at the end of a long week than a fancy dinner out.
    My mother was clever indeed...she could fashion pretty much anything out of a toiiet paper tube, but had no love for crafting. She did it out of necessity. My parents' passion was reading. As a kid, I lovedreading (still do) but always yearned to craft, but my parents never really encouraged it. They wanted us to follow more intellectual pursuits. Also, my parents were VERY wary of seeing their daughters in gender specific roles! Homemakng was my mother's choice, and it could be my sister's and mine only AFTER we earned higher degrees. ("It's not a choice if you have no otter options. Read a book!") That said, my mother marveled to everybody about my cards, quiots and lovely home!

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    1. Meg,
      Since crafting was a necessity, she felt like the quote at the beginning. I think her choice for you was a good one. My parents' passion was reading, too. But, some things were done at home out of necessity. Then again, they often made things for the sheer joy of it.

      She is so right, "It is not a choice if you have no other options." I hammered the same thing into the heads of my daughters. One finished college; the other did not. I told the son not to get some girl pregnant and then have no options, to stay single and be able to afford a wife and kids. He married at 38 after he bought a house. They had two children and his wife went back to her job as a teacher after they were both in school. Everything the one daughter and the son does is a choice. The other daughter has few choices...sad.

      I prefer sewing as a craft.

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  5. Grrrr...."otter options " "quiots " sorry.

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    1. lol..I hate it when it happens to me, too.

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  6. Homemade makes my heart sing. Almost all of it. Home-made meals, a garden lovingly crafted, cards, preserves, needlework, paper, candles...
    My father made beautiful jewellery - silver and semi-precious stones. My mother embroidered, did tapestry, cooked, gardened - and taught herself to make bobbin lace.
    I used to do more when my hands were less recalcitrant. I still admire and appreciate the work of others.

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  7. EC,
    You phrased it well for me: makes my heart sing. You came from a talented family. I know what you mean about the hands. But, mine are just getting old. I love getting homemade for gifts.

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  8. Why is it that 'handmade' is more acceptable than 'homemade' to the art crowd?
    That said I love to knit, crochet, sew, garden and make food from scratch - meals, bread, seitan, yoghurt, etc.

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    1. Bellen,
      That is so true!

      The denotation of the words is the same. The connotation is the difference. What does the word conjure up in your mind?

      The "handmade" item is lovingly made as opposed to being a crass, mass manufactured item. Hence, its cost is more.

      The "homemade" item conjures up the image of the poverty of having to struggle to make something when a person cannot afford to buy it. The quality, look, and price will be less.

      Of course, we all know do this with words. "handmade" or "homemade" make no difference to me. But, as with all speaking or writing, we must think about what our audience will read into writing.

      Thanks for reminding me of the words we use.

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