Leading ZINE this week is our production manager Helen with some belting recommendations from the world of craft and artisan design.
"The modern world is moving faster and faster, and part of my job is to know at least some of the mass production techniques feeding the “make more, but quicker” drive.
It’s stimulating, but in my downtime I have far more of a yen for the crafted and the artisan.
I’m inspired by the patience and the skill it takes to make beautiful, one-off, handmade objects.
For me, to see the process is to appreciate the value".
Chanel and Dior Savoir Faire
Let’s be honest, the world of couture can feel a little closed-door to mere mortals.
I’ll likely never have the budget or the social calendar to experience these beautiful garments first hand. But Chanel and Dior open the door a crack with their Saviour Faire series on their website, YouTube, and Instagram too.
I’m particularly fascinated by the embroidery houses, where hundreds of hours are dedicated to hand applying each sequin, feather, and bead to bring the designer’s sketch to life.
It’s something I practice at home in my own small way. As hobbies go it's slow and painstaking work, but it’s also strangely zen.
Sky Arts Landscape and Portrait Artist of the Year
The shows may be a little twee at times, but where else can you watch the creative and physical processes of so many different artists, practicing so many different styles, unfold?
I love watching the colours go down.
I love arguing with my husband that, just because it’s not to his taste, that doesn’t mean it’s not good (anything abstract gets an indignant “I could do that”).
The time-lapse footage of the full creation of the winning piece is always fascinating.
But more than anything, as a (very) lapsed “artist", watching makes my fingers itch.
YouTube can be an odd place to spend any amount of time. It can lead you down some pretty dark rabbit holes in just six degrees of autoplay.
But for me, it’s a repository for skills offering a glimpse into workshops the world over.
From stunningly intricate bamboo craft...
...to the alchemy of glass blowing..
...to carving an ice swan bong...
I’ll never tire of watching skilled hands work.