When Paul Before Swine was invited to guest blog here at lotus tree crafts, there was only one topic apropos and prevalent for my attention beyond all others: the perils of a crafty partner.
For the record, I fully support The Misses and all her crafty endeavours. But being in a relationship with a crafter is not all sunshine, lollipops and rainbows. In fact, I would argue it requires just as much patience and diligence as the art of crafting itself.
For those of you already in such committed relationship, you know what I’m talking about. But for you naïve folk considering or on the verge of a relationship with a crafter, heed the following warnings…
1. “I spent more than I should” is a common phrase used by the crafter, who is usually not the financially conscious one of the relationship. This further compounds the problem, because do you have any idea how much crafting hardware and supplies cost?
I do now. Because you can’t use the same ink for stamping as you do for block printing, you can’t use the same sewing needles for cotton as you do for denim, and you can’t use the same scissors for paper as you do for fabric. They’re scissors – they cut – why must they be specialized?
And she says golf is an expensive hobby…
2. The Craft Bomb. As the crafter’s partner, you are also most likely the neater of the relationship. Yet despite the presence of a craft room – and I highly suggest you get one – your kitchen table, your coffee table, and yes even your bed can go from prim and proper to dishevelled and run amok in the blink of an eye.
This is commonly known as The Craft Bomb; or, in scientific terminology, Hurricanus Craftis. It usually occurs when the crafter begins a new project; its effects linger for the entirety of the project since the crafter is unable to clean up hardware, supplies, or rogue off-cuts at any time during the process.
3. Honesty versus Sugar-coating is a fine line on which you must balance. Be it in regards to fabric, quality, hand-made versus home-made, or such and such, the crafter is an insecure species. And one ill-advised comment and you are likely to get a knitting needle across the head.
Always begin your opinion with “it’s nice”. Always. Even if that painting looks like a bunch of monkeys flung colors onto a canvas. If you have something negative to say, DON’T. Instead, make suggestions beginning with “it’s nice, but…”
Crafter: “What do you this of the scarf I’m knitting you?”
You: “It’s nice, but maybe pink isn’t the best color for a guy.”
Crafter: “Well, what if I make it in green apple martini?”
You: “It’s nice, but maybe black will go better with my winter coat.”
4. High risk, low reward. Despite all your patience and all your diligence, despite all the stress and all the sacrifices, despite helping to pick out fabrics and colors, despite being the waiter refilling the glass of vino and the masseuse easing the aching back, and despite all pitfalls mentioned above, who gets ALL the credit and thanks?
Not you, that’s for sure. No, you’re the Robin to the Batman, the Watson to the Sherlock, the “oh you too, I guess” to the crafter’s “thank you so much, it’s beautiful!”
In the end, as the crafter’s second fiddle you will get just about as much recognition as that leftover pink craft fallout on the floor (which you will probably end up vacuuming).