“Crafted” versus “Craftsmanship”

Julie Sanford at work in her studio.
Julie Sanford at work
What is the difference between “crafted” and “craftsmanship”?  There is a lot of talk around the world about things being crafted.  Many times, I think when we use the word “crafted” we mean handmade and the maker is highly skilled at his craft – whatever that may be.  So, you could use the term “crafted” across many industries such as;  tool and die makers, engineers, artists, cabinet makers, etc.  But, are we using this word correctly?
I found a blog, Nebo, that encourages everyone to think more like a craftsman, “Even if you don’t think of yourself as creative — say you’ve never made something with your hands in your life –it doesn’t matter.  Craftsmanship is an attitude, and one we believe is important enough to cultivate.”  This blog writer took craftsmanship a step further by listing 8 characteristics that mark a master craftsmen:
  • Motivated by mastery rather than attaining a status.
  • Willing to make sacrifices in finances, free time, and relationships.
  • Believe in the end-value of what they are making.
  • Balance a passion for history and tradition with a drive to innovate.
  • Plan and think things through first.
  • Immerse themselves and can maintain focus on their work.
  • Put in the hours for their craft to become a habit of daily life.
  • Know that you’ve never really “made it”.
One of the reasons, that I opened C2C Gallery is because I believe that having well crafted handmade art in your home is important to creating a well lived life.  It connects you with other people in the world.  Also, it  creates an inviting, calming environment for you to live your life. “Craftsmanship is a way of life.  It is about fully engaging our heads, hands, and hearts in our labors.  It is about adhering to a set of values and principles that produce objects that are not only functional and beautiful but also make for a sustainable lifestyle.”
Excellent craftsmanship is a way of thinking and doing.   There are challenging issues in our world today.  Surrounding yourself with excellent art – both functional and decorative – supports your own personal well being and the local economy.  Just my two cents.

(excerpts from the craftsmanshipinitiative.org)