Arts & Crafts
Dive into the hobby of arts and crafts, which describes a wide variety of activities involving making things with one’s hands. The materials used in arts and crafts generally involve textiles (such as cross-stitch, crocheting, embroidery, knitting, lace making, macramé, needlepoint, quilting, sewing, and string art); wood, metal, or clay (like jewelry, pottery, cabinetmaking, and sculpture), paper (such as calligraphy, bookbinding, collage, origami, papier-mâché, and stamping), or glass (like beadwork, glassblowing, and stained glass). Many types of art can be found in a museum or gallery.
For a number of years, all items were made by hand. With the Industrial Revolution of the mid-19th century, however, more items were made in factories. An arts and crafts movement began in the 1850s in reaction to this development, which proponents saw as countering the worker alienation, upper-class extravagance, and artistic degradation associated with machine-made items. While the movement died out after a time, arts and crafts endure as a favorite hobby of many, particularly children, who often participate in activities as part of school projects.
There is much debate as to the difference between art and arts and crafts. Some people believe that art involves a creative statement, whereas arts and crafts are more about the application of technique. Others point to the difference in skill level needed for art (perceived as very difficult) versus arts and crafts (perceived as less difficult). There’s no question that the boundary line between the two categories is often blurred.