Friday, August 10, 2012

The Pinterest Syndrome


Reminisce with me for a moment. Do you remember having an “inspiration file/ box/ drawer/board?” Stacks of beautiful images ripped from magazines, luxurious fabric swatches, a little knick-knack that was the just-right shade of blue?

If you’re like me, you remember days of crafting, just based on necessity or plain old creativity. No tutorials, no step-by-step instructions—just you and your medium and your mind.

Has Pinterest made us lazy? Now, if you want to find out how to make XYZ, simply search the term and welcome a barrage of images that you can mindlessly recreate.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I really REALLY love Pinterest for many reasons and find a great deal of inspiration from people far more creative than me. But when people see anything you’ve done, made, slaved over and thought up from your own creativity and continually ask “Did you get that from Pinterest?” it’s deflating. It takes the originality out of craft, saturates the market and leaves little room to really create a one-of-a-kind style.

Not to mention the countless hours mindlessly perusing the thousands of pictures of skinny models in expensive clothes, the newest fad diet and funny cat pictures. It’s almost to the point of unhealthy. Instead of actually creating what we pin, we waste hours “pinning, pinning, pinning” and almost develop an inferiority complex.

A recent experience brought this to mind. I did a craft for a guest post recently and when brainstorming and coming up with that aha! moment, Pinterest quickly bashed my dreams. Surprise! It’s been done.  Then afterward, you obsess over it to see if it in turn gets pinned! Good grief! It’s a vicious cycle.


Now, I give major props to gals that have truly authentic ideas and beautiful homes to match. Week after week, bloggers wow us with “why didn’t I think of that?” brilliance. I really don’t know how they do it, but I applaud their ingenuity and stamina. But sometimes, it’s gotta be a real drag.

I truly miss the days of creating something to solve a problem, to make something that hasn’t been made 451,579 times.  Sewing because I learned from my grandma, knowing how to cook because I peered over the stove since I could remember…when things were simpler. If your craft was in fact made a million times, you were blissfully unaware, able to sit back and admire your handiwork without feeling like you stole it.

I appreciate many things that Pinterest is good for, however; its awesome organizing capabilities, inspiration around every corner, and supporting a craft revolution of sorts that bring the appreciation of arts and crafts back to mainstream society. But, just for a moment, shut it off and see where your mind takes you with just a few materials. I think you’d be surprised with yourself.

Oh, and feel free to pin this.


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