I love the film Animal House. It’s gloriously chaotic and shamelessly tasteless. One of my favorite things about it is the statue of Faber College founder Emil Faber, with the sappy yet pointless motto ‘Knowledge is Good’ carved on the base. If you’d like a little knowledge, you might wander over to the blog where I found the above illustration. It tells you what happened to that statue. It also asks the burning question ‘what ever happened to Conan the Vegetarian?’
Beats me, but I hope the author has found an answer in the year since he posted that entry.
So what does this have to do with crafts? Well, as sappy and pointless as Faber’s quote was… it’s also right. Knowledge is good. And knowledge is something woefully lacking when it comes to the general public vs crafts.
My guess is that every one of us has had someone watch what we’re doing and then make an astonishing assumption about what it is, how it’s done, what use it is, or where we learned to do it. Some of these assumptions become so commonplace to us that we start dreaming of wearing tee shirts or posting huge neon signs to dispel those myths.
We at least begin to wish that more people knew the reality.
In bobbin lace, I find the two most common assumptions people make and get dead wrong are 1) that it’s tatting, and 2) that the only way it’s possible to learn it is from an elderly relative, preferably a grandmother.
Nope, bobbin lace is not tatting. They’re different processes that result in very different textiles. As for learning from grandmothers, well, there are people who learn that way, but I learned it from a mail order kit. Others learn it from books, YouTube videos, and people who do demonstrations in public. There are many avenues to knowledge. Every one of them is legitimate.
What about your craft? What common misconception do you wish people would learn the truth about?