Wednesday, December 08, 2004


I knew this. It's refreshing to see a resurgence in crafting, no matter how bizarre. I grew up in a crafting family so I didn't think it was odd that my mother made things from "Pack-O-Fun" magazine.

Popcicle sticks, oatmeal containers, construction paper, acrylic yarn - these were our crafting materials. I was forever making things for my Barbie dolls. I made food out of Play-Doh. I taped a small square cut from a plastic bag onto the side of a gift box and inserted pictures cut from magazines and Voila!, a "TV" for my dolls. We longed for carpet in our bedroom but my mother said no because we were forever cutting snips of paper and dropping bits of glue. We had this "Make-It" book that gave us hours of pleasure just paging through it.

There were instructions for making walking stilts out of coffee cans, puppets out of washcloths, a stick horse out of a sock, and all kinds of wonderful things for which we never had the right materials but we dreamed of making.

Crafting has only recently become hip. In the preppy-suburban environment I grew up in, it was not considered cool to make things. The belief was that you made things because you were too poor to buy them, not because you wanted to be creative. Knitting, quilting, and sewing were considered pastimes for back-to-nature hippies and grandmothers. The fabric and yarn selections were pathetic and consisted mainly of synthetics. Paints were for artists or kindergarteners.

There was no internet in the 70's over which one could communicate with other crafters and share creations. You Gen-X-crafters (and Gen-Y and Gen-Z, if there is one) don't know how good you have it! Go make stuff!

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