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Crafts to connect with your kids

Crafts? Art? Handicrafts? What’s the difference?

My entire life, I have always enjoyed making things, you name it and I have probably tried it. Until recently I didn’t really understand the reason why I chose certain hobbies and activities (art, crafts or handicrafts). 

There is one common thread in all of the projects I try out, and that is functionality or usefulness. I always want my projects to have a use as well as beauty and enjoy the creativity. I have baked cakes for birthdays and always enjoy making homemade gifts for Christmas for family and friends. I have quilted, made pottery, sewn garments, gardened, canned, made candles, soap, and homemade beauty products, sewed handmade bags, knitted, crocheted, and many more I am probably forgetting. My point is to say that it took me waaay too long to figure out why I like what I like and why certain projects were not interesting to me.

So that brings me to the point of this blog post. What is the difference between art, crafts, and handicrafts?

These are just my opinions of what I think qualifies as art, crafts, or handicrafts so if you think of it differently no problem! I just think it’s helpful when trying to decide where people’s creativity is, for example, I never thought I was artistic and I don’t like crafts (again the popsicle sticks and glitter glue projects, or think macaroni necklaces) as much.

Until recently I didn’t realize why I was drawn to certain projects until after I learned these definitions. I found clarity and it all comes down to usefulness; or functionality. All of the projects and skills I learn have the functionality to them. This would have been helpful when picking out new skills to learn, I now know what I enjoy and I can focus on those projects and skills. 

If you or your child knows what category they typically fall into when being creative it will help when choosing something new to create and learn about without jumping around and getting frustrated. 

Here are the “official” definitions of each of the three categories:

art:

The definition I found in the dictionary was that “Art is the expression of ideas and emotions through a physical medium, like painting, sculpture, film, dance, writing, photography, or theatre.” I think of art as “visual art”, “performing art” and “literature” and if it stirs an emotion in you, this could be a song, a play, a poem, a painting, and more.

crafts:

The definition I found for crafting was “the activity or hobby of making decorative articles by hand”. When I think of crafts I think of “arts and crafts” using popsicle sticks, glitter glue, and something that anyone can recreate with guidance and they all turn out looking similar, they are usually done fairly quickly and take little skill other than the motor skills involved. I think of these as quick holiday crafts that are fun and festive to decorate your house for the holiday.

handicrafts:

The definition I found for handicrafts is “any of a wide variety of types of work where useful and decorative objects are made completely by one’s hand or by using only simple, non-automated related tools”. A lot of times you will see the words purposeful, functional, or useful to describe them while still being beautiful. The skills they take to learn handicrafts involve patience and slow learning to gain the skills needed to create the final product. 

You’ll hear me say a lot that the Makers Club is more than popsicle sticks and glitter glue (although they have their place and can be fun to use) and the reason I say that is I am distinguishing the difference between crafting and handicrafts. I enjoy teaching these lifelong skills to kids and showing them how to slow down and appreciate what goes into handicrafts and that you can make something beautiful that you can use every day. 

Here are some examples of handicrafts:

  • sewing
  • knitting
  • crochet
  • soap making
  • woodworking
  • pottery/clay
  • basket weaving
  • weaving
  • embroidery
  • cross stitch
  • quilting
  • spinning
  • toy making
  • paper making
  • gardening
  • canning
  • baking, cooking
  • an sooo many more! 

Inside the Makers Club, your child has the opportunity to learn handicraft skills like knitting, machine sewing, hand sewing, and more. Some example projects inside are animal stuffies that come with templates and videos teaching the stitches used in the project. Another fun project is a tote bag that they can carry what they got from the library or supplies for their latest project they are working on.

The Makers Club has new projects added all the time, there are even quick projects or holiday projects, and extension projects for the more in-depth skills they will learn inside.

If you are a homeschooling family The Makers Club is an excellent addition to your homeschool curriculum, it provides an ad-free, safe platform and allows your child to explore their creativity and learn essential life skills.  

Ready for more?

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