November is upon us and 2016 is fast approaching its climax. With Halloween now over, many giant retailers will focus their mass market messaging on the upcoming festive season. Christmas shopping is an often dreaded affair and as such, bigger stores are rather clever at making it easy for us. One substantial ploy is the gratuitous and unwanted pre-packaged gift set, typically filled with all manner of unnecessary and mundane goods. As consumers we have the power to resist, refrain and refuse to take part. Instead, the real joy in seasonal shopping is found in those small and personal retailers (who are at home in a physical store and online). Such proprietors work hard to build enthusiasm for objects that are well-designed, aesthetic, meticulous and worldly, choosing things that have meaning and a functional value. Artisanal items are typically imbued with an honest approach, a feeling of longevity and a desire to facilitate enjoyment.
Craft is a passionate labour of love and one in which quality is integral. When creativity and handcraft unite, we find that good craftsmanship leads to good design. As a result, objects mature, thrive and provide long-lasting pleasure over time. Craftsmanship in its purest sense acts to preserve the heritage of making things by hand. With personality, intimacy, integrity and depth, objects that have been shaped by human hands are especially valuable and worthy of investment. Handcrafted items are found in various shapes, sizes and instruments across the home. Sturdy, tactile, simple, cosy and exquisite, it is in handmade items that we find many generational treasures to be cherished and enjoyed. Indeed, it is surely the greatest compliment to the craftsman that we gain continuous pleasure from using their wares throughout the years.
And so in making preparations for this Christmastime, I encourage you to think about your purchases and to remember that less is more (to quote that old cliché).
A selection of fine handmade wares:
A Wooden Ball With Holes
A Rocking Horse
Mokuba is Japanese for ‘rocking horse’ and was created by the Japanese/Danish design duo Takashi Okamura and Erik Marquardsen (O&M Design). Mokuba was designed for the 125th anniversary of Brdr. Krüger in 2011 and is produced in a limited edition of 200 numbered pieces.