Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Craft Activism--Review

The first thought that popped into my head when I read the title Craft Activism was using a craft or art to draw attention to a cause or maybe using part of the proceeds of sales to fund charities or causes.

Craft Activism is so much more than that.  The book is divided into five sections organized around the type of activism.  

Part I is titled "Crafting a Statement."  In this section are five chapters about specific people or groups, such as  "Knit Bombing"  (The Jaffa Girls), "Quilts With a Message" (Carolyn Mazloomi), "A Knitted Spotlight on Endangered Species" (Ruth Marshall) and others.  Most chapters are  accompanied by a "DIY" section with tips or guidelines on how to do each activity, and a "Makers Jam" with  one paragraph highlights on projects and accomplishments by other crafters.  There are also one or more projects in each chapter, for a total of seventeen projects.  

Other main sections are:

  • Part II:  "Recrafting the Past" with chapters "Not Your Grandmother's Embroidery," "A New Take On Old Domestic Arts," and "Return of the Granny Square."
  • Part III:  "Crafting for a Cause" with a chapter on "Knitters United." 
  • Part IV:  "Crafting to Recycle, Renew, and Reuse" with chapters on "Recycled Chic," "One Word: Plastic," and "Toys Out of Trash."
  • Part V:  "Crafting a Community" with chapters "Get Organized" and "How to Get Crafting."
The book concludes with a resource list and index. 

Projects in the book lean heavily toward fiber arts. Nine of the seventeen projects include at least some knitting. The book assumes that you have some knowledge of knitting or whatever skill is being utilized. Other crafts include sewing, crochet and embroidery. There are two projects, one involving crafting an Artist Trading Card (ATC) and one with tin work which I believe could be done by someone with no experience in either. 

Craft Activism is not a project book, although there are projects.  It is more an overview of activism involving crafts and an inspiration to connect with the world, with like-minded people, and to create a better community. The subtitle of the book says it best:  "People, Ideas, and Projects from the New Community of Handmade and How You Can Join In." I found the book very inspiring and the articles about individual crafters  intriguing. 

Craft Activism is written by Joan Tapper and photography is by Gale Zucker.  Check out their blog here.  It is published by Potter Craft, New York.  I was provided with a copy of the book for review.



My Life Under the Bus said...

Very strange I feel like I was here before too....hmmmm....if I left 2 comments just delete one....

Leslie Todd said...

You did comment on another post a couple of days ago--but don't worry, you've got a comment on the giveaway for Craft Activism, so you're in the running.