How to Train Your Non-Crafter for the Holidays - Wabi Sabi

How to Train Your Non-Crafter for the Holidays

Around the beginning of November, a particular species of customer emerges from hibernation and makes its way into yarn stores.  In the interest of science, let us take some time to learn about this specimen.

Consumerus Non Artis, or "the Non-Crafting Consumer", is primarily motivated by a strong desire to find well thought out gifts to solicit joy and appreciation from the closely related species, Consumerus Pro Artis.  They may be easily spotted in the wild by the slightly intimidated look with which they regard the many types of yarn, needles, and notions.  

This confusion may often be fixed slightly by the intervention of trained handlers (also called staff members), who will intervene as needed to help direct the Non Artis towards likely items.

Occasionally, members of the crafting species will believe themselves to be Non Artis, until sufficient exposure to soft, luxurious yarn in a pleasing array of colours causes them to reveal themselves.  This transformation is not unlike observing the transition from caterpillar to butterfly:  the individual will seek out a large variety of supplies and lessons, disappear into a cocoon, and then appear weeks or even months later garbed in a stunning array of colour as they find their wings.

For those of you who have friends or relatives who may belong to this species, it is useful and often necessary to provide them with hints and keywords that they can exclaim to the staff member, in order to best find items that would be pleasing to you.  Some examples:

  • Giving the Non Artis some hint as to what sort of things you like to knit is always helpful.  The most common answer to "What does your knitter like to make?" is a blank, somewhat panicked look followed by "I don't know...stuff?  Hats?  Scarves?", which will usually result in direction toward mid-weight yarn.  Dropping comments in their vicinity along the lines of "Wow, do I ever love to knit socks.  These sock yarns sure are fantastic!" or "Golly, but I love working with really big yarn.  I don't know what I'd do with something fine, but the really bulky stuff sure is great!" will often result in a more pleasing offering come festivities.
  • While the Non Artis may be otherwise very observant, when confronted with a rainbow of colour, they often forget what shades their crafter most enjoys.  Making a big fuss over a particularly beloved shade (whether it is of pottery, clothing, or anything else) is more likely to stick in their memory.  Similarly, if there is a colour you detest, make a similarly big deal of it within their hearing.
  • If there is something particular that you want, there is no shame in telling them.  Similarly, if you enjoy shopping yourself, make it clear to them that you enjoy gift cards (we offer them, and they are often a temptation to Non Artis, though some are worried that their crafter would find them impersonal)
  • Browse our class listing and see if there is anything that strikes your fancy.  Then mention it, to see if the Non Artis would be interested in joining you.  Who knows, the experience may spark a transformation!


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