Yay or Nay: Craft 'snark' sites
'Craft' and 'Snark' are not words you'll often hear in the same sentence. The gentle, supportive craft community is usually exempt from the scrutiny and bitchiness applied to policics, music and celebrities, and most people like it that way.
Or so you might think. I've recently chance upon a few sites that are designed to poke fun at craft 'errors' - the shockingly ugly, the ill-advised and the downright pointless - and have found that snark in the craft community is alive and well. I haven't made my mind up what I think of all this yet: on the one hand I don't like the culture of encouragement without criticism that can flourish in this world and feel a bit of brutal honesty is sometimes needed to help creativity. On the other hand, I quite like the warmth and cameraderie that exists in craft. What do you think? And while you're making up your mind, take a look at our mini-guide to craft snark sites.
Top 6 Craft Snark sites
'Biting the hand that feeds us', this site aims its venom not so much at fellow crafters (phew) but at the alleged 'mismanagement of the Etsy.com site'. With categories entitled 'bullying' and 'don't quit your day job', its writers claim to only want what's best for Etsy, so they make posts about customer service failings, technical glitches and regularly suggest 'Etsy alternatives' for those who just can't take it anymore. Interesting reading!
A straight down the line point-and-laugh site, Etsy WTF swoops on 'ugly' craft items and proceeds to pick holes in them. Nothing is sacred here: they'll laugh just as much at the poor spelling and grammar in your advertisement as they will at your missed stitches. The site mostly relies on easy targets (the more deliberately 'bizarre' end of the crafting spetrum) but this at least makes its observations 'harsh but fair'. There are some truly ugly items here...
This site ominously disclaims on its front page that its contents are 'strictly a matter of opinion', and it certainly has plenty to spare. Much along the lines of Etsy WTF, it picked out the ugliest speicmens its writers can find and graphically hammers home the point that 'handmade isn't always pretty'. Sadly, neither is this website, as the design is a little confusing!
Craft fail is yet another sin-bin for projects gone wrong, but I like the cleaner design of this site. Expect to find fashion crimes, cake wrecks and toys that are supposed to look cute but is actually damn creepy. Unusually, the writer of this blog posts openly about her own unsucessful crafting endevours, which I think deserves credit for honesty. You'll grow to love this blog, but just pray that your own work doesn't end up here!
Why Would you Knit That?
This site comes in from the 'get a life' angle, parading items that someone obviously spent a good chunk of their time knitting but failed to notice at any point in the process that their creation was of no import or value whatsoever. Some of our all-time favourites come in for criticism here, including the knitted digestive tract and lab rat - but in the case of the knitted 'poo', I think they have a point.
Crochet will never quite escape its 'granny' image, and this is perhaps why it comes in for such a lot of flak. It's also possible to make all manner of overly-revealing fashion monstrosities in crochet, so along with the kitsch stuff, these feature heavily on the site.