In our world today, we are focused on being digital but it is important to remember that when we interact with things – we do it physically.
We are made to make
Making things allows us to tap into our natural ability to shape and make things
If you look at babies, they touch everything they can with their hands and feet. It is a way of how they are learning about the world. What is also happening is that over time babies are honing the motor skills needed to make things. Our hands have fingers and opposable thumbs. Over time our hands helps us grip things like tools (hammers) and the allow us the finesse to have fine motor skills so that we can use a needle and thread.
How we use these tools to shape and transform material can be done categorised in 3 ways:
Adding – combines or connects materials together.
Here you can think of using screws to hold pieces of wood together or glueing on pieces of paper to make some arts and crafts
Subtraction removes materials
Craving/engraving that special message in a ring for your love ones.
Transforming is altering the states of materials.
An example of this is glass blowing. The most common example of this is cooking and baking.
Our ability to use various tools allows us to make various things.
Making things allows us to apply our own personal knowledge of the world
As we grow up from babies to adults. We learn things of about the world from chemistry, physics of how materials works. As we see things being made we build a desire to make those things ourselves
An example of this is with Great British Bake Off. Baking is based on great flavours as well as chemistry.
There is a direct correlation that after an episode of Bakeoff and the rush of people trying to make the same cakes. Waitrose saw an increase of 881% with baking tray sales after an episode.
However if you tried baking anything the first time it may not be as good as what you saw. Making things well requires take time to learn and master that ability. At times it can bring you joy and at times can be utter frustration. Each of these moment contributes to the learning process, Along the way as our personal knowledge improves and it gives us the confidence to be able to shape a material and say ‘I made that’.
Making things yourself allows you to share a piece of you with world
Flat pack furniture like Ikea furniture is common in most homes. We all get the same materials and instructions. Some people they like to put their own spin on the product with the knowledge of the material and tools. They are able to customise their the flat pack furniture into something new.
What was a shelf is now a door, what was a door is now a table. These new creations are shared online to inspire others to make.
But you don’t have to start making with big things. You can start with small things today:
- A hand written thank you note
- Customising a gift with engravings
- Adding goggly eyeballs on to fruit to make someone laugh
When you share the things you make, you share a piece of your personality in something people can hold on to.
Making is the most powerful way that we can express ideas and shape our world.
Making things makes the things personal
Get out there and making something today!