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Craft Gone Bad: Boob Scarves, Cat Ties & The Wrong Side of Cozy

Marian Lizzi is 41 years old and lives in Manhattan. By day she is Editor-in-Chief of the Perigee Books imprint at Penguin. By night she does "a bit of standup comedy" and explores the wide wrong world of bad craft on her blog Kraftomatic.

What's the single most horrific craft project you've ever seen?



It might have to be a tie between soaps shaped like buffalo wings and
crocheted spotted dick (British dessert pudding). Both are
 surprisingly realistic.



Are there certain genres of crafts that tend to engender more bad craft
 than others?


There do seem to be some trends. I've noticed a lot of soaps in 
strange shapes (in addition to the buffalo wings, I've found hot dogs, 
creme brulee, dentures, remote controls, etc).

Denture soap
Denture soap

The Japanese art of
 amigurumi (miniature crocheted or knitted figures with human faces)
 yields a lot of questionable projects -- things that are supposed to 
look cute but end up seeming random and strange (such as smiling tea
bags).

I've also discovered some trends that are evidently quite 
popular, though I'd never heard of them before -- such as fabric
 postcards and frighteningly lifelike baby dolls for grown-ups that are
 referred to as "reborns."

Oh sweet Jesus.
Oh sweet Jesus.

One last trend: strange wedding-cake
 toppers. I had no idea that couples were commissioning their 
likenesses as reindeer, zombies, sock monkeys, gunslingers, hedgehogs, 
or rabid sports-team enthusiasts. Now I know.





"I'm sorry if this is your father."
"I'm sorry if this is your father."

"I'm sorry if this is your father."
"I'm sorry if this is your father."

Tortilla Jesus
Tortilla Jesus

Let's talk about cozies for a minute. Are there things that should just
 NOT be given a cozy?

I've been surprised and amused at the inventiveness of cozy 
enthusiasts out there. I figured I'd find lots of cellphone and iPod
cozies (and I have), but I never imagined things like lip-balm cozies,
 asthma-inhaler cozies, ice-cream-carton cozies, or apple sweaters. 


Craft Gone Bad: Boob Scarves, Cat Ties & The Wrong Side of Cozy

Seriously, people are knitting and crocheting (and buying) cozies for
 their fruit. I can't get over it. Last night I posted a bong cozy,
 which the crafter will customize for your...water pipe.




Coffee cup cozy overkill
Coffee cup cozy overkill

Do you craft?

I like to buy old necklaces at thrift stores, take them apart, and
 restring them in new ways. I don't sell them -- they're just for me to 
make and wear.




Ghost cellphone finger puppets made of felt.
Ghost cellphone finger puppets made of felt.

Craft Gone Bad: Boob Scarves, Cat Ties & The Wrong Side of Cozy

True or false: There is a fine line between good craft and bad craft.


True. I'm not sure I'd say they're bad. It's more like unfortunate. Or 
unintentionally humorous. In fact, the crafts I like to feature on Kraftomatic are ones that are well-executed, but perhaps not 
well-conceived.

"Why He Didn't Call: Bolero Edition"
"Why He Didn't Call: Bolero Edition"

There are lots of examples, but here's just one: A 
fine portrait of the legendary former Atlantic Monthly editor Lewis
Lapham. It's impressive, but I'm not sure who the market is.

From the department of questionable taste.
From the department of questionable taste.

Slug brooches--tres chic?
Slug brooches--tres chic?

Do you ever run out of stuff to post on the blog? Or is the world full of
bad craft?

I thought I'd run out, but I've been pleasantly surprised. There is
 seemingly no end to the wacky, funny, and perhaps ill-advised things people will create and (attempt to) sell.




"You thought it was funny when you bought it"
"You thought it was funny when you bought it"

Craft Gone Bad: Boob Scarves, Cat Ties & The Wrong Side of Cozy

What the hell is it?
What the hell is it?

What the hell is it?
What the hell is it?

Chiaobama...ch-ch-ch-chia president.
Chiaobama...ch-ch-ch-chia president.

It slips right on...and then you die
It slips right on...and then you die

Do you own any bad craft? I see some of these things and I want to buy
them. Like the severed polar fleece bunny head. Who comes up with that? It's
kind of genius.

I've succumbed to a few unusual offerings. My felted miniature likeness of Padre Pio, the popular Italian saint, is a personal
favorite. He's the perfect combination of reverential and cuddly. I
featured it on Kraftomatic and then quickly realized I had to own one.
Looking at the photo just wasn't enough.


Poopy diapers for cats.
Poopy diapers for cats.

Poopy diapers for cats.
Poopy diapers for cats.

Poopy diapers for cats.
Poopy diapers for cats.

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