Sunday, September 12, 2010

Why, How Kitschy of You!

Blue Candy Wrapper Bangle, http://www.thetotetrove.etsy.com/

Large Fast Food Tote, http://www.thetotetrove.etsy.com/

Bright Lights Corsage Necklace, http://www.thetotetrove.etsy.com/

It's no surprise that I like to describe my Tote Trove items as kitschy. To me, the word encompasses all that is quirky, outside of the box, and colorful (both in appearance and personality). At least it did until now.
Driven by no other motivator than boredom, I decided to Google the word one day. Here's a sampling of what came up:
Art using popular culture icons, mass-produced objects; means "worthless" in German.
http://www.artsconnected.org/artsnetmn/identity/idvocab.html

Art characterized by sentimental, often pretentious poor taste. It is typically clumsy, repetitive, cheesy and slickly commercial.
http://www.myfineart.co.uk/glossaryFilter.asp?category=Terms

Pretentious, low-quality work which is "thrown together".
http://www.poetsgraves.co.uk/glossary_poetic_terms_jk.htm

Oh, my. Turns out that "kitschy" is not exactly the cute descriptor I imagined it to be. I mean, "clumsy," "slickly commercial," "low-quality," and "worthless" have such ugly, negative connotations. But then again, "pretentious" isn't so bad. If by pretentious they mean an abundance of rhinestones proclaiming awesomeness.

You know what? I've decided to make my peace with this. Because one person's poor taste is another person's weirdly appealing. And I'm all about the weirdness.

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