The Jefferson Community Education Outreach Service Club met at the Extension Office for their May meeting. The subject of the day was “Artisans Crafts of the World.” A video was shown by Extension Agent Judy Matlick.
Through out history people have used their hands to make items. They have passed their skills form one generation to the next. As the computer age has come along, we have seen a decrease in these arts. We maybe losing parts of our heritage.
Artisans in isolated regions sell their crafts as a source of income.
States like West Virginia have a strong tradition of craft production. Seventy-two percent of women in developing countries live in a rural area and depend on craft making as the main source of income.
One such craft is Irish lace. Irish lace making was introduced by the Ursulina nuns in the early 1800s. They set up crochet schools but they disappeared by early 1900s. Factory production was introduced thus they could produce vast amounts of lace in a short time.
Another craft shown was Ugandan Jewelry. It is considered eco-jewely because it is made from recycled paper. The colorful paper is cut into strips and rolled onto a needle to maintain a hole. These beads are dipped in varnish. They are hung to dry. They turn these beads into necklaces, bracelets and earrings. Much of this bead jewelry is sold at jewelry parties and over the internet.
West-Central Mexico groups known as the Huichol make yarn paintings. A design is outlined with yarn on paper. Then the picture is completed with contrasting yarn inside. These objects are used as Christmas ornaments, refrigerator magnets, coasters and name tags. Large pieces can be framed as decorative art.
We need to recognize crafts as a vital part of culture and economic life. We need to encourage our young people to learn skills to maintain our heritage.
During the business meeting we were reminded of important dates: Sept. 24-27 Fall Conference at Jackson’s Mill; Achievement Party – Nov. 3 at Paul’s; Allenberry Bus Trip – Dec. 1.