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handicraft business

What is Handicraft?

A handicraft,
sometimes more
precisely expressed as
artisanal handicraft,
is any of a wide variety
of types of work where
useful and decorative
objects are made
completely by hand or
by using only simple
tools. It is a traditional
main sector of craft,
and applies to a wide
range of creative and
design activities that
are related to making
things with one's hands
and skill, including work
with textiles, moldable
and rigid materials,
paper, plant fibers, etc.
Usually the term is
applied to traditional
techniques of creating
items (whether for
personal use or as
products) that are both
practical and aesthetic.
Collective terms for
handicrafts include
crafting, and
The term arts and
crafts is also applied,
especially in the United
States and mostly to
hobbyists' and children's
output rather than
items crafted for daily
use, but this distinction
is not formal, and the
term is easily confused
with the Arts and
Crafts design
movement, which is in
fact as practical as it is
Handicrafting has its
roots in the rural crafts
—the material-goods
necessities—of ancient
civilizations, and many
specific crafts have
been practiced for
centuries, while others
are modern inventions,
or popularizations of
crafts which were
originally practiced in a
limited geographic area.
Many handicrafters use
natural, even entirely
indigenous, materials
while others may prefer
modern, non-traditional
materials, and even
upcycle industrial
materials. The individual
artisanship of a
handicrafted item is the
paramount criterion;
those made by mass
production or machines
are not handicraft

Seen as developing the
skills and creative
interests of students,
generally and
sometimes towards a
particular craft or trade,
handicrafts are often
integrated into
educational systems,
both informally and
formally. Most crafts
require the
development of skill and
the application of
patience, but can be
learned by virtually
Like folk art, handicraft
output often has
cultural and/or religious
significance, and
increasingly may have a
political message as
well, as in craftivism.
Many crafts become
very popular for brief
periods of time (a few
months, or a few
years), spreading rapidly
among the crafting
population as everyone
emulates the first
examples, then their
popularity wanes until a
later resurgence.

Handicrafts in
modern education
At the Buell Children's
Museum in Pueblo,
Colorado, children and
their guardians partake
in "arts and crafts" (i.e.
Simple "arts and crafts"
projects are a common
elementary and middle
school activity in both
mainstream and
alternative education
systems around the
In some of the
Scandinavian countries,
more advanced
handicrafts form part
of the formal,
compulsory school
curriculum, and are
collectively referred to
as sloyd in Swedish, and
käsityö or veisto in
Finnish. Students learn
how to work with
mainly metal, textile
and wood, not for
professional training
purposes as in
American vocational–
technical schools
, but with the aim to
develop children's and
teens' practical skills,
such as everyday
problem-solving ability,
tool use, and
understanding of the
materials that surround
us for economical,
cultural and
Secondary schools and
college and university
art departments
increasingly provide
elective options for
more handicraft-based
arts, in addition to
formal " fine arts", a
distinction that
continues to blur,
especially with the rise
of studio craft, i.e. the
use of traditional
techniques by
professional fine
Many community
centers and schools run
evening or day classes
and workshops, for
adults and children,
offering to teach basic
craft skills in a short
period of time.

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