Tuesday, 4 November 2008

Craft Hits the Headlines!

As us craftsters already know, craft has been big news for years now - but what with the dreaded credit crunch hitting full swing, my favourite pasttime has been enjoying rather more media attention than usual of late. And for good reason: according to a Google press release out this week, searches for 'sewing classes' are 60% higher than usual as more and more people are attempting a little make-do-and-mend. In London Town, contemporary craft nights have been slowly growing in popularity for some time - from the long-standing Craft Night at the Notting Hill Arts Club to newer kids on the block such as The Make Lounge, whose roster of established craft professionals tutor in anything from making a retro apron to creating your own candles in vintage teacups. And the latest edition of the Sunday Times Style magazine even features a hand-hacked front cover print, to accompany its headline article The Joy of Thrift, which looks in-depth at the fab-sounding new book by writer India Knight, The Thrift Book: Live Well and Spend Less. Broken down into sections, Knight examines how we can all live fabulously for less in terms of eating, beauty and, of course, crafting, with particular big-ups to Craftster.org and Etsy.

Even the multi-nationals are getting in on the act, notably Sony with their latest venture, Little Big Planet. Far be it from me to even pretend to understand the world of computer games, in layman's terms the planet in question is made up of collage-y, crafty layers to create handcrafted worlds inhabited by the rather charming 'sackboy' (a kind of knitted, customisable doll). As part of their press launch over the past week, they have collaborated with the Shoreditch branch of the Women's Institute to create customised sackboy dolls based on female celebrities, and have even been putting on their own free Creative Arts and Crafts workshops at the Thomas Neal's centre in Covent Garden , open to anyone wishing to go down and get involved in some crafting action. These stills below, taken from the game itself, are (almost) enticing enough to encourage me to wrangle the PS3 control out of Mr Craft Hacker's hands and have a go myself.

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