I definitely wouldn’t call myself an artist, but I do think I can say I am aesthetically oriented. I love beautiful design. When I choose stationery I deliberate over the size, shape and feeling of the envelope and paper in combination with the color and print.
One of my dear friends, Jill, with a little friendly teasing passed on to me her aversion for knick-knacks. Now, I don’t think I ever LIKED or collected knick-knacks, but Jill helped me widen my definition for knick-knacks. I think a knick-knack is a mediocre item with no use. I think sometimes I am tempted to acquire things that are mildly pretty, but have no purpose–especially if the mediocre item is cheap. I am especially weary of souvenirs which can end up being something that looks really great at the time but sits in a drawer for years with an aura of untouchability around it. Its those coconut coasters that say: you can’t get rid of me, you brought me here from Venezuela when you were 15. Now if something is just beautiful, then that’s a different thing all together. (And I do have a weakness for kitsch.) The opposite of a knick-knack is an item that meets this criteria: form = function.
I am delighted when I encounter these items. Like these stamps:
For exactly the same price as those tasteless liberty bell forever stamps, I can place this work of art on the exterior of my correspondence. Celebrate aesthetics. Reject knick-knacks.