How is Technology Changing the Way We Craft?
Written by Staff Writer • Posted on Oct 19, 2015
When you think of a crafty person, what image comes to mind? Someone skilled with needle and thread? Who can create beautiful pieces out of wood? Is brilliant at executing DIY projects? From master woodworkers to the everyday scrapbooker, crafts are a huge part of our society. In recent years, as modern technology has intersected with trade secrets, it has also become an extremely exciting – and accessible – part of our society. But just how is technology changing the way we craft?
The Internet makes it easier than ever to learn and excel in any craft you can imagine. It is no longer necessary to seek out a teacher, pay for lessons, or attend courses. For every type of craft there are hundreds of websites, videos, blogs, and social networking sites that are devoted to helping others learn the tricks of the trade. From figuring out the basics to sharing new, revolutionary techniques, the Internet is full of helpful information. And with the ever-increasing popularity of sites like Pinterest, you can easily search for ideas for a new project and instantly gain access to a full set of instructions.
Technology also makes it much easier to accomplish old, time-consuming techniques. While crafters used to have to do everything by hand, many machines can now accomplish the most tedious of tasks at lightning speeds. For example, embroidery used to take hours of careful attention in order to create beautiful pieces. Today, a modern digital sewing machine can be programmed to embroider a piece hands free for up to 3 hours. Scrapbooking is another craft that has seen a major technological revolution. With about 23 million people participating in some sort of scrapbooking, companies have been quick to develop programs and apps that simplify the process. Instead of spending hours developing photos, picking out paper, cutting our boarders, and creating captions, websites such as Shutterfly make it easy to organize digital photos into an online book. With hundred of available backgrounds and fonts, it makes it easy to create an amazing looking scrapbook with just a few clicks of the mouse. Once the book is done, all you have to do is order it.
For those wanting to up their craft game, cutting-edge technologies such as laser cutting and 3D printing have opened up a whole new world of possibilities. For example, 3D printing allows anyone with a computer and CAD (computer-aided design) software to create a blueprint of just about anything. That item can then be “printed” – one thin layer at a time – in materials such as plastic, wood, or metal. 3D printers have created everything from clothing to model cars to figurines and much much more. And it is only the beginning.
While there may be some debate about whether or not technology is causing some time-honored craftsmen techniques to become extinct, there is no denying that technology is having a major impact on the way that the modern world crafts. And there is no doubt that it will continue to change and influence the future of craft. It’s amazing to think what exciting creations will be possible in the years to come.