Return to Roots: An Investigation of the History, Products, and Processes of the Sears Catalog and Creation Space



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How did technology affect craft and people, and change the means of making? The Sears Catalog has a rich history. In twenty years, the company expanded from a flyer selling jewelry, to multiple catalogs selling endless possibilities of products. Not only was it possible to buy everything to fill a home, it was possible to buy an entire home. With the establishment of the railroad, people across the country could have access to the same products delivered straight to their door. This boom of media based consumerism transformed the way people acquired goods. While the Sears Catalog was successful in revolutionizing America, it did have failures. Prior to the explosion of the catalog, craftsmanship and local traditions were celebrated. The Sears Catalog offered a quick availability of goods, and with mass production, changed the way these goods were made. With this new technology came the erosion of local traditions, forming a homogeneous society. This project proposal transforms the loss of knowledge to growth of knowledge by allowing members of the community to regain traditional means of craftsmanship through a social environment. The main concept is to allow a creation space for people to learn, craft, sell, and consume together.