“We have already remarked that traditional ideas of workmanship originated when man-made things were few and highly prized, of whatever sort they were, and when highly regulated workmanship must have been so rare as to seem wonderful. But now things are all too many, high regulation is commonplace, and free workmanship as such is fast dying out, and high regulation, of all things, is least respected. Consider any scrapheap.

–Ruskin said ‘If we build, let us think that we build forever’. Shall we say ‘If we build, let us remember to build for the scrapheap’? Shall we make everything so that it goes wrong or breaks pretty quickly? I think not. Men do not live by economics alone. There is a question of morale involved. A world in which everything was ephemeral would not be worth working for. There are overwhelming social and aesthetic arguments for durability in certain things even if, as we are told, there are no economic ones.”

–Pye, D. (1995 (1968)). The Nature and Art of Workmanship. London: The Herbert Press.

One of the many wonderful things about this project is meeting makers keen to minimise the environmental impact of their practice, many engaging directly in crafty practices of re-use and up-cycling.

Makers such as Julie Frahm and her recycled glass beads……


And Gabbee Stolp and her ‘nose to tail’ approach to working with bone, skin and other natural materials that would otherwise end up as waste in landfill.


We also know makers are not just designing and creating in an ethical manner, but also considering how once an object is no longer wanted how it is broken down into parts for reuse/recycling.

If a core concern of your practice is repurposing, recycling or otherwise working to reduce your creative footprint we’d love to hear from you!