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Do It Yourself Essay Notes

by: Kate McDonald

Do It Yourself Essay Notes Art 367

Marketplace > Oregon State University > Art 367 > Do It Yourself Essay Notes
Kate McDonald

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About this Document

The in class movie notes plus essay
History of Design
Kirsi Peltomaki
75 ?




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This 4 page Bundle was uploaded by Kate McDonald on Monday February 8, 2016. The Bundle belongs to Art 367 at Oregon State University taught by Kirsi Peltomaki in Winter 2016. Since its upload, it has received 31 views.


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Date Created: 02/08/16
Kate McDonald Handmade Nation Essay January 15, 2016 The Handmade Nation is a documentary that highlights the recent trend of the rise of  DIY (Do It Yourself) crafts in America. This movement has begun a generation of crafters who  do things themselves rather then depending on brandname companies to do it for them. The DIY  movement has changed several concepts and opinions of individuals who are self serving and  self reliant. This documentary made in 2009 showcases several different designers and crafters  who are revolutionizing the way we look at handmade products, crafts, and creativity in  America.  The Topic of The Handmade Nation is all about the rise of arts and crafts in America and  the different mindset of people in America when it comes to crafts. This documentary highlights  and sheds light on the obvious struggles and challenges that these individuals go through on their quest for discovering individuality and expressing themselves. Craft throughout the film is  described as expressing themselves and showing uniqueness in a field where things are typically  all the same. This “indy” community is represented by people who grew up creative and through  crafts are able to incorporate that into their daily life. At several points of the film, the designers  of the crafts pride themselves on reinventing timeless designs and giving them a “facelift”. For  example, there is a section about knit and crocheted items that have hand embroidered skulls on  them. Crocheting and knitting is something that has been a timeless activity for people, but the  addition of a skull or a cat makes it their own and gives them a unique since of individuality.  This creativity is not only an important addition to our society, but a healthy outlet for those who are trying to define themselves and discover who they are.  In a time where individuals are all trying to be like everyone else, this latest trend of DIY  and do it yourself crafts­ only helps the creativity in America. “The small businesses are  booming because of the latest trend of people doing crafts, drawing, making clothing, jewelry,  and accessories on their own. People have been more inclined to purchase hand made items  because of the creativity and uniqueness of them. Having something that is handmade is totally  original and “one­of­a kind”. Previously mentioned, the appeal of being unique and expressing  themselves through these handmade items draws in the consumer that only “feeds the fire” of the DIY movement and the creation of the Handmade Nation that we have today. The decision to  purchase a handmade item is an easy one for many consumers. Having a handmade item has  certain qualities that you can not and will not find in items at stores. For example, these  handmade items are made up to your specifications and with the intention of being one of a kind. The piece you are purchasing has a story, the art and creativity behind that piece will always be  with you. The sentimental value on the purchaser is few and far between. Knowing that  something was handmade and special for you is not only special, but something to take a certain  amount of pride in. As for the producers perspective, the gift they are giving to the public by  sharing their gifts and talents to the nation is remarkable. Because these people are not working  for big headhunter company they are able to use the money they receive for following their  dream and intellectually broadening their creativity to feed their families, put their children in  dance lessons, and buy christmas gifts for their loved ones. The maker of these gifts feels a since  on pride sharing their talents with the world and is able to make a living doing the things they  love.  A certain moment that stood out to me in the film was the women who knit public things  in Houston to bring cheer to those around them. This is a cultural attribute that I found really  rewarding. Too many times people do not take the time to do things for others, these women  knitters are selfless. They found a way to do the things they love while making others happy.  This community with out a doubt looks forward to and expects to see these things on a daily  basis. The reward that these people feel is giving back to the community that they love and  brightening the town. The collective effort that they put forward with the collective decision to  better their community. These “crafters” also experience a sense of a community themselves­ they stay together to reach their full potential and be the best they can be as a community. The  social meaning and the collective views on it are very much different for every “indy”. These  meanings are different for everyone and hold different levels of importance to each individual.  These individuals make a decision to share their gifts to the world, and this decision is one that is not done for personal advancement, but to share their skills with the world.  These individual decide to get into crafts and putting them out for public enjoyment and  pride in their work and creativity. They decide to sell these items to share the love of the do it  yourself movement. Selling these items is a way of self expression and pride of what they are  accomplishing. Deciding to sell their crafts for people is a decision that can not be an easy one,  but knowing that other may experience a love of what you do is a huge reward. Knowing that  someone is appreciating the work and careful thought you placed on that one craft is something  that can not be replicated. The business practices I saw in the film were regular Sunday markets,  flea markets, ect. However, one of my personal favorite crafting sites is Etsy. This website is an  easy market for makers to get their product to the public. I have purchased several things for my  dog, hair, and even jewelry from these sites. Knowing I have something that no one else will be  able to find in a store is very rewarding and makes the product all the more special.  I believe that the design/DIY movement makes an astonishing difference in  contemporary  society. This movement highlights the contemporary society and the differences  that make America so unique and great. These differences and the different spin on crafts that  have been done for centuries are becoming something that is totally unique and one of a kind.  Our generation has made huge strides intellectually because of this movement and the creativity  that comes with it. The more creative freedom that these individuals experience leads to more  opportunities and ways to further ourselves as a society. I was not previously aware of the craft  scene portrayed in the film. I have never been good at crafts or overly crafty, so I was unaware  that so many people made a successful living off of making and selling crafts. I was always  aware that the lines at the craft stores were always very long and people were always buying  more things to make items with. I believe that pinterest has had a lot to do with the recent boom  in DIY and the trend that people are falling into. This huge industry is becoming something  wonderful and something that will undoubtably open several doors for many others.  The DIY movement has been so successful because everyone loves to be different and  have different ways to express themselves. This individuality is something that we should admire about our country and the latest trend sweeping the nation. 


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