The rise of craft – my not-so-secret addiction
I hate to admit it but I have an addiction and that addiction is crafting. I honestly can’t get enough of it. I’d always dabbled in it, and if we went back in time to 2004 you’d happily find me knitting away, but not in the same way I am now. Now, my whole house is covered in things I’ve sewn, crocheted and embroidered. Every cupboard is stuffed full of fabric, wool and PVA glue. So where did this obsession with crafting come from?
A few years back I wasn’t having a very good time of things. I was in a pretty bad place mentally and I was convinced by a family member that I needed something to occupy my thoughts and distract me from my melancholy. So I bought a sewing machine and for the next few months it became my saviour.
Life improved (as it usually does) and my passion for stitching stretched into other areas. I picked up a cross stitch book, I went to a screen printing class, I learnt to crochet. As the months turned into years I realised this wasn’t just a phase, I’d gone and got myself a hobby I felt passionate about. Of course, this wasn’t just down to my love for sewing, crafting as a hobby was busy growing around me. Sewing classes and shops started popping up everywhere, craft clubs and stitch n bitch groups became even more popular and magazines like Mollie Makes appeared on our shelves. Oh and then Kirstie Allsopp got involved. This, my friends, was a craft revolution.
So why has crafting become so fashionable all of a sudden? Is it the recession that has brought out this ‘make, do and mend’ attitude in so many of us? Maybe as a society we’ve finally got pissed off with the whole throwaway attitude that cheap high street stores have helped create. Coupled with the country having no money, ‘making your own’ seems like a pretty good idea. In the fashion world, vintage is massive and as a result people are now busy scouring the charity shops and hitting up the car-boot sales so they can customise until their heart is content. Or maybe with so many people’s lives being sucked up by technology, crafting is a way to relax and unwind. It provides a sanctuary away from being ‘plugged in’ 24/7.
Or maybe, us craft lovers had just forgotten how much we liked making things! As a kid I was into art and drama in a big way. I loved being creative. But as an adult, you can easily move away from these things. You spend your days working, and your evenings making dinner, cleaning, watching telly or if you can be arsed, going to the gym. It’s pretty bloody boring really! You no longer make dens or write love letters, or run around the garden pretending to be Batman.
So maybe, just maybe, the popularity of crafting is actually because we all just want a little bit more fun and creativity in our lives.