Friday, May 4, 2012

Of Rules and Regulations

Yesterday I spent the day listening to experts talking about various crafts, from watercolour painting to sewing a leather waistcoat. It was very interesting hearing people who are passionate about their subjects. They gave tips about techniques, where to find supplies, new developments, etc. I now know what Irish crochet is and I learnt a new way of knitting a neat and flexible ribbing.

I gradually realised that the purpose of the day was to clarify the rules and regulations for an upcoming competition. The margin around your pewter picture must be between 5mm and 10mm wide; your woven curtain tiebacks must be identical; the yarn you knit your sweater with must be 100% wool, and so on. When they said that the string you tie your labels together with must be 20cm long, they lost me. I see how these rules come about and I admire those who can follow them. But as someone who doesn't do front-side, back-side tatting, it's just not me.


  1. Rules, why,what for, from whom? What we do is art and creativity! Art needs no rules! But if you want to cover something to let it shine as what it not is, then you nead rules how you can irritate the viewer. At least this is stolen from artists, who invented this for themselves, which is their way of designing, presenting, selling.

  2. I can see that if you're having a competition, there must be some guidelines so that competitors are doing more or less the same thing. The trouble is, it gets carried to extremes! Then it becomes more about whether you can read the instructions than about creativity.

  3. " If they give you ruled paper, write the other way."
    That's one of my favorite quotes. :o)

    I can't seem to follow any instruction to "t". Even with patterns, I use them as loose guidelines. :o)

  4. I don't mind rules and regulations when I'm first getting started. Somehow it helps me understand the process. However, once I start the process, I prefer to be left to my own devices!

  5. Good point, perhaps Jess's lines are necessary until you become fluent, then you can write across them. And of course there are people who are extremely fluent who choose to write between the lines!