This Saturday will mark the third year I’ve volunteered at the Long Island Cask Ale Festival hosted by the Blue Point Brewing Company and put on by Starfish Junction Productions. I know, I know…dirty job, but someone has to do it. Each year the weather is great, the brew terrific and the people and vibe — best of all. This, my friends, is part of the Craft Economy. It didn’t start with ETSY, but Etsy amplified it The fun thing about the craft economy is that it’s really only a part of an economy, because its more about doing things yourself than paying others. And the work product is better.
So watching a plumbing video on YouTube to assist in changing your P trap is part of the craft economy. Cooking dinner with natural or at least unprocessed ingredients is craft. Making beer at home or with a craft beer club, another example. It’s about doing things for yourself and others (giving a neighbor some homemade spaghetti sauce, for instance) that take time, care and require some learning. Some experimenting. Smelling the roses along the way.
Now you are not going to see me knitting anytime soon, and I’m still going to buy Levi’s button down jeans, but working with my hands and brain and not sending my hard earned to China or Omaha is where my head is. Saving the planet along the way by not purchasing packaging and other non-sustainables doesn’t hurt.
So as I volunteer and savor the occasional quaff at the Cask Ale festival this weekend and talk among fellow beer lovers and makers, I’ll be immersed in the craft economy. I will be among friends. (Oh, and the sour pickle guy will be there too. Yay.) Peace!