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September 04, 2008


Thanks for all these great comments . . . seems there are quite a few of us refugees. And Sandy, good to find your blog too, it's wonderful.

I think for a while I was excited that so many people were doing crafts. It would mean more for everybody, right? More books, supplies, ideas, opportunities to teach, to write, to learn, to get respect. In some ways that's been true. But just as musicians have to learn scales and the difference between a melody and a beat, I find myself coming down more and more on the side of "get some experience and skills before you try to sell me junk." (And I'm dying to make a political reference here, but let's just say you can put lipstick on a . . . dust cloth, and it's still what it is.) And to Rayela's point, making connections with or at least having awareness of skilled artists and artisans around the world matters too, certainly part of my "slow cloth" vision.

Okay, this is almost turning into a post or many, so I'll just say thank you all and there will be more on this juicy topic. The beat goes on.

Oh boy, this is MY rant, and I have gotten in trouble with it every time I post! Seems that it's just fine to do whatever you want, usually a copy of your owl or the dumb bird outline, with a big fat needle and some acrylic yarn, no knowledge of fabric, materials, technique OR the interest in finding out! One more bird-on-a-wire and I will personally pull the electrocution switch... Glad to have found your blog- stitch on!

Very interesting! Something I've been chewing about in my mind and want to post about, too. Still have to think about it some more though. I'm interested in bridging the gap I see between 3rd World "artisans" and 1st World "artists", especially in how it translates in what prices they can command for their work (or not).

Chew, chew, chew... munch, munch...

I'll be curmudgeonly right along with you. Worse than "how to make a dustcloth"? The DIY craft fairs that advertise that they're "Not Your Grandma's" crafting.

Really? I'm sorry to hear it, my grandma was a kickass crafter!

OMG HOW HOW HOW could the "*author*" include this???????? I guess though that if we were all smart, there would be no need for these books:} Kind of like the instructions on certain products--"do not iron clothes while on body"............perhaps *that* is the audience/market?

I just posted about that same article!

OMG!That is the stupid/funniest thing I've heard today... If a person is foolish enough to buy this book though perhaps they need the instructions for how to make a rag

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10 Qualities of Slow Cloth, by Elaine Lipson

  • I defined Slow Cloth several years ago on this blog. Read the original post at http://lainie.typepad.com/redthread/2008/01/this-must-be-th-1.html. (Copyright Elaine Lipson 2007-2011; all rights reserved).
  • Joy
    Slow Cloth has the possibility of joy in the process. In other words, the journey matters as much as the destination.
  • Contemplation
    Slow Cloth offers the quality of meditation or contemplation in the process.
  • Skill
    Slow Cloth involves skill and has the possibility of mastery.
  • Diversity
    Slow Cloth acknowledges the rich diversity and multicultural history of textile art.
  • Teaching
    Slow Cloth honors its teachers and lineage even in its most contemporary expressions.
  • Materials
    Slow Cloth is thoughtful in its use of materials and respects their source.
  • Quality
    Slow Cloth artists, designers, crafters and artisans want to make things that last and are well-made.
  • Beauty
    It's in the eye of the beholder, yes, but it's in our nature to reach for beauty and create it where we can.
  • Community
    Slow Cloth supports community by sharing knowledge and respecting relationships.
  • Expression
    Slow Cloth is expressive of individuals and/or cultures. The human creative force is reflected and evident in the work.


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Books and Reports by Elaine Lipson

Selected Articles by Elaine Lipson