Why I feel robbed by Pinterest

DSC00891I don’t feel like I’m old enough to make this kind of statement, but I’m going to do it anyway.

I was an indie crafter before indie crafting was cool. Or maybe I should say, I learned to make things by hand during a time when it wasn’t cool.

Seriously, how many preteens in the ’90’s spent half their time reading and the other half knitting, crocheting, or planning out home decor options with detailed elevations and floorplans on wide-ruled paper?

I’m not delusional enough to think I’m the only one, but I was one of precious few.

I was always good at making things work–and making them work more or less attractively. Now, today I’m not the kitschy blogger who sits at home and figures out new and amazingly cutesy ways to arrange the pictures on the mantle, then posts pictures to Facebook, Twitter, and this blog.

I’d rather go on a hike.

I don’t like cutesy. I’m not cutesy. Or even artsy. But I’ve always loved taking pride in a well-done project, especially one inspired by my own creativity.

For this reason, I feel robbed by Pinterest. Douglas

Let me explain.

Example 1:

Someone walks into my home and spots a Christmas tree built entirely of books, like the one the hubster and I constructed last Christmas season. The first comment out of the esteemed guest’s mouth: 

“Oh my gosh! That looks like something right off of Pinterest!” 

Example 2:

In a moment of horror at one of my husband’s terrifically unattractive floor-lamp purchases, I attack the thing with hemp rope and a glue gun. A few hours later, we’ve got a unique, customized thing that doesn’t look like it came off the reject shelf at Wal-Mart.

One of my best friends (and a certifiable Pinterest addict) walks in and says “Whoa, I saw something Just. Like. That. on Pinterest last week. I actually like yours better. Where did you find instructions?”

I know that coming from her, this is THE highest form of praise.  

On countless other occasions, I’ve heard my peers refer to weddings, baby showers, and even entire homes referred to with the relatively new adjective pinteresty. “You know what I mean by that, right? Artsy and crafty and generally unique and cute?”


The phenomenon is enough to make me want to wear one of my afghans as a superhero cape, grab my made-over floor lamp–a random hand-crocheted octopus that I designed–and the recipes that have been passed down to me by my pre-Pinterest forbearers–and hold them to myself–and to proclaim to the world that I DIDN’T EVEN NEED PINTEREST’S HELP.

If pinteresty makes it into the dictionary in the next few years, I’d like to propose a complementary addition: extrapinteresty, the prefix meaning “without; outside of.”

Dealing/ThinkingYeah, see that lamp? It’s MY brainchild. That’s an extrapinteresty project. That required no computer screen–just me, several dozen hot gluesticks, and three hours of time.

Oh, don’t you love my extrapinteresty Christmas tree? So do I. It was MY IDEA.

I haven’t yet been irritated enough to delete my Pinterest account, though the thought has occurred to me.

I would like the world to know that I use Pinterest far more as a collection of useful links and ideas than as an independent source of inspiration.

When I don’t know what to make for dinner, I go to a cookbook, not to a Pinterest board.

Most of the time. And whether you think my living room looks amazing, or like an unorganized eclectic smorgasbord complete with a totally random rope-wrapped floor lamp, you can praise (or blame) me, not a social networking site.

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