This short film is relevant to everyone, but I thought especially to us crafters. Not only do we consume, but we also produce and distribute “stuff”. With the new year commencing in a couple of days, let’s really take these things to heart, spread the news to all of our friends and family, and actually do something about it.
What is The Story of Stuff?
From its extraction through sale, use and disposal, all the stuff in our lives affects communities at home and abroad, yet most of this is hidden from view. The Story of Stuff is a 20-minute, fast-paced, fact-filled look at the underside of our production and consumption patterns. The Story of Stuff exposes the connections between a huge number of environmental and social issues, and calls us together to create a more sustainable and just world. It’ll teach you something, it’ll make you laugh, and it just may change the way you look at all the stuff in your life forever.
[Image courtesy of The Story of Stuff]
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The new materials we buy in order to craft provide creative and hopefully fulfilling jobs for artists, designers, and crafters. The reason there is so much diversity of fabrics, yarns, patterns, books, and classes in so many crafts is due to the size of the consumer demand. But when people are looking at how to make their lives greener, often art and craft supplies are given a free pass (fusibles, anyone?) because they’re seen as necessary for personal fulfillment. Luckily, most of us are working in traditions that honor thrifty use as well as reuse and recycling of materials. That spirit is honored by crafters who search for ways to incorporate reused and sustainable materials into their projects. It should also be taken as inspiration for folks in the industries that create materials, who can find ways to produce less waste and toxicity in their manufacturing processes. That’s good business as well as good stewardship of the environment.