The other night, husband and I were taking a mental time out (i.e. watching Hot Tub Time Machine), and I was absentmindedly crocheting some cotton coasters. Husband asked me what I was making and, after telling him, he couldn't understand why people would use absorbent cotton coasters. I asked him if this included the quilted coasters that I've been making, and he said he just couldn't understand the point of a coaster that couldn't be wiped off and would need to be thrown in the washing machine. Now, as somebody who crafts, and actively talks to others that craft, there is nothing weird about the concept of a cotton coaster - quilted or crocheted. However, this did make me start wondering if he was being his inherently practical self, or if there really is a world of items that crafty folk make that others just don't "get".
I figured I'd check with Amazon and Google (seeing as you can buy pretty much anything via those two channels). A search for "cotton coasters" in the shopping section of Google brought up a ton of items, although primarily on Etsy or Artfire. Searches for "crochet coasters" and "quilted coasters" on Amazon brought up a variety of books with patterns for how to make them, but not ready to sell items.
Before I learned to crochet, I had never thought of making dishcloths to use instead of store bought sponges. We're now completely converted in our house and I don't see myself going back. I'd also never thought handmade facial scrubbies might exist, like these that I made for this spa set.
This just leads me to so many questions.
- Do these more unique items appeal only to those that already craft, or have a desire to do so?
- Are the concepts completely lost on the general public?
- Seeing as you can buy pretty much anything you can think of on Amazon (I mean, Tuscan milk - fantastic), is it weird that crochet cotton coasters aren't being mass-produced and sold there?
- Do gifts of certain handmade goods need to come with a description as to what they're used for?
I would love to know your thoughts. Are there other things that are inherently based toward the "crafty" members of the population, or am I just imagining things?