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C R A E F T | Our Book Of The Month

August, 2018

It’s official.  We’re captivated by Craeft – and by Alexander Langlands.  A regular face on television, you may  know him from the BBC or Channel 4, but we stumbled across this wonderful archaeologist, historian, writer and broadcaster at the Port Eliot Literature Festival.

One of the reasons this glorious festival happens to be our hands-down-favourite festival – year on year – is because of the promise of speakers just like Alexander.  For 45 minutes we were swept away into Alexander’s glorious search of the mysterious lost meaning of cræft.  Through a vibrant series of mini-histories, told with his trademark energy and charm – both in his book and on the stage – he resurrected ancient craftspeople who fused exquisite skill with back-breaking labour and passionately defended the renewed importance of cræft today.  We were enchanted with tales of weaving, bee-keeping, thatching and basket-making – not least his own personal endeavours to learn and master these skills.

In Craeft, Alexander reminds us that, in a period of meaningless mass manufacturing, our growing appetite for hand-made objects, artisan food, and craft beverages reveals our deep cravings for tradition and quality.  But even more fascinating, there was once a time when craft meant something very different; the Old English word cræft possessed an almost indefinable sense of knowledge, wisdom, and power.

His book is captivating, charming and a must-read for anyone who makes or finds joy in craft.  We devoured it and suspect that any of you who have found joy from the Makers we work with at The Room Service, will do the same.

Craeft: How traditional Crafts Are About More Than Just Making

by Alexander Langlands

This wonderful book is published by – and available to buy from – Faber & Faber for£20.

The Room Service