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JenniferJuniper Posted - Jul 06 2010 : 09:06:31 AM
I'd like to see something on lost arts or jobs that are still essential but people do not go into anymore, and which skills may die off. Career counselors are all about cranking out IT professionals, business majors, lawyers etc. But I have never heard of one suggesting a 20-something become a farrier, midwife, watch repairer, barrel maker, and other low-tech fields.

I have read the Foxfire series with great interest for this reason.

Farmgirl Sister #204
25   L A T E S T    R E P L I E S    (Newest First)
Christy925 Posted - Jan 24 2016 : 04:40:43 AM
I'm resurrecting my home baking. Used to make loads of wedding/birthday and graduation cakes.I'm approaching retirement age and people are asking for my cookies. I think I'll need the income.So I will slowly get back into it.
I also used to make baby quilts to sell on consignment. I need to get busy :)

Farmgirl Sister #2315
Bonnie Ellis Posted - Jan 16 2016 : 8:51:31 PM
Maybe what we all are striving for is hands-on practical information for living, as addressed in Mary Jane's first book. Much of those skills don't just come naturally but are taught. Farmgirls can teach each other. That is what generations do. I love sharing my skills.

grandmother and orphan farmgirl
ComeOnSammy Posted - Jan 16 2016 : 12:24:12 AM
This might have already been stated, but carpentry is the first thing that came to mind. Housing/homelessness wouldn't be such and issue I think if we still knew how (and were legally ABLE) to build our own dwellings.
On the upside, my husband is a mechanic (learned from his dad since he was a child) and even though he struggled in school, he can basically fix anything with a motor.
Kangaroo Kate Posted - Dec 31 2015 : 1:20:19 PM
This was a good topic. we comment all the time of how much things have changed I homeschooled my son who is now 23 and he is realizing why I had the standards I did and appreciates it now hardly any of his friends had "parents" kids left pretty much on their own. Some boys were over one day to play video games and were stunned at me making from scratch chocolate chip cookies for them! They only got those homemade. One 18 year old almost cried when I made him a birthday cake his mom never bothered. they are not getting the old values and appreciate some of the old trades I heard one kid a time back surprised milk came from a cow... literally.. people actually milk them? I think it is important ladies like us keep alive some of the old traditions. I have always gravitated to the "old ways" guess you could say. was a good life going with grandparents to strawberry patch to pick berries, going with granny to fight thorns and ticks for black berries, then helping to make pies and jellies.. from scratch. the professions that have been mentioned I do see many of them fading. sewing machine repair is one here the fella who would work on the old metal head singers is gone now and no one took over his talent. idea is.. just go buy a new one. well I like my old one. times have changed as someone said but I hope those of us on here can keep alive as much as we can. I cant sell some of the things I used to cant compete with china but I do think there is more of a trend going back somewhat to quality handmade items not just cheap. which is a issue here in Texas with all the illegals. I for one am willing to pay more for something with quality made from someone keeping their trade alive and well.

Dance Like No One Is
brightmeadow Posted - Aug 17 2014 : 8:46:30 PM
so I recently found that a craft I was interested in had been declared worthy of UNESCO world heritage intangible status - perhaps we should submit these crafts as worthy of recognition by UNESCO

Just because we are not a third-world country does not mean we do not have a heritage worth preserving.

You shall eat the fruit of the labor of your hands - You shall be happy and it shall be well with you. -Psalm 128.2
YellowRose Posted - Aug 02 2014 : 09:38:30 AM
My mother tatted, but growing up I wasn't interested in learning. I keep her shuttle and a sample of her work on my dresser.

Hugs, Sara
Walk in Peace.
Live with Joy.
Autumn Posted - Jul 25 2014 : 05:05:25 AM
I was just skimming through this thread and noticed a lot of people complaining about the lack of seamstresses. Up here in Ontario we have no shortage of them, they're employed in the Bridal shops and there's a handful of alteration shops and freelance seamstresses. I did consider the job myself but after having heard about the trials and tribulations of being a seamstress, as well as the less than mediocre sewing program offered at the local college, I decided against it. I wouldn't want a job that I can't get sufficient training in. I also heard it's a lot of hard work for very little pay. I read about this one seamstress who complained that her clients would often scoff at her estimates and try to underpay her for wedding alterations. People just don't understand the value of the work and how much goes into it. It's not easy.

sunshine Posted - Jul 21 2014 : 4:47:26 PM
i still make braided rugs

have a lovely day and may God bless you and keep you safe
Farmgirl Sister #115
my blog
my store
harvesttender Posted - Jul 21 2014 : 2:25:05 PM
I am loving this chat. Did anyone mention rug braiding? That's my thing! As much as possible, I hunt for and rescue 100% wool - from rummage sales, Salvation Army. Goodwill - anywhere that I can find a tag on something that identifies it as 100% wool. This is fast becoming the harder part, as garments are more likely to be only part wool. New wool is still for sale, but prices in my area run about $20/yd. now. I love to recycle and repurpose. And my family's toes love warm woolen rugs!


Bearclover Posted - Nov 17 2012 : 09:34:22 AM
Brenda, I love your websites!

Farmgirl number 3738
My blogs:
Handmade stuff

Fabric website:

Not all who wander are lost.../
Plan to improvise
Bearclover Posted - Nov 17 2012 : 09:32:57 AM
Brenda, you can also use butcher paper or freezer paper. It is easy to find AT&T the grocery store. It has a waxy side. Iron the fabric on a lower setting to that and trim to paper size. The biggest issue is that most color inks in printers are not color fast. So you either have to smoke the fabric in a special solution, or have a printer with the proper inks.
Spoon flower is cool but their fabrics are I think around $18.00 a yard. And that's even for your own designs. There is fabric you can buy that is already treated but it is also very expensive. It is over $3.00 a sheet for 8.5" x11".

Farmgirl number 3738
My blogs:
Handmade stuff

Fabric website:

Not all who wander are lost.../
Plan to improvise
brightmeadow Posted - Nov 17 2012 : 09:04:41 AM
@cranberry rose - there is a product in the quilting section of JoAnn's cut in 8 1/2 x 11" sheets. You iron it on to muslin and it stiffens the fabric to about card-stock stiffness to go through the printer. Darn I can't think of the name of it right now.

But I'll bet you could also use regular cardstock and temporary spray adhesive to do exactly the same thing.

OK you got me curious enough to google. There's a lot of ways!{keyword}

Well, you get the idea...

You shall eat the fruit of the labor of your hands - You shall be happy and it shall be well with you. -Psalm 128.2
Visit my blogs at (farming) (knitting) or my homepage at
KatTylee Posted - Nov 15 2012 : 07:10:40 AM
Morning all,

I think several are right here in that most of these "lost arts" are just that, lost. It isn't that they don't exist it is just that people have a hard time finding them. My dad was a blacksmith/farrier, my brother is a buckaroo (cowboy that tries to do nothing except what he can do from on top of a horse) and shoes his own horses and a few for other folks. I spin, crochet, am teaching myself to knit, and I'm hoping to get one of my dad's anvils and some of the tools and go to blacksmithing as well. I enjoy welding but it has been a long time since I did any so I'm sure I'm not good at it. :) I think the key is getting to know your neighbors and community. I just moved from an area that was very focused on the recycling/upcycling/farmers market type things. It was great but there didn't seem to be a lot of the older arts there. Now I'm in a much smaller community but it seems to have more of the older arts but it is a more agricultural based community. I think people could probably make more money in the short term in my former community doing the farmer's market and all but I think my new community will probably sustain the older trades for longer. Just an opinion. Don't know if it really works that way or not. It would make an interesting socialogical study...

~"Be yourself; everyone else is already taken."
Oscar Wilde~
Prairie Gypsy Posted - Apr 10 2012 : 07:18:06 AM
There's a group that's trying to keep blacksmithing from dying off. I'm not at home so I don't have the magazine with the name of the group on hand. For Valentine's Day I got my fiance a gift certificate for 4 hours of private lessons with a master blacksmith. He absolutely loved it. I'll probably give him the same thing for his birthday next month. He absolutely loved it and hopes to be able to build a forge at home.

Farmgirl Sister # 2363
Warren, MI
annie314 Posted - Apr 08 2012 : 07:34:38 AM
What I would like to find is a shoemaker. I have some wonderful old shoes that aren't made anymore. They're falling apart to the point they are no longer wearable. I'd love to find someone to custom make me a new pair.

Meandering to the beat of a different drummer
cranberryrose55 Posted - Mar 12 2012 : 10:07:08 PM
How do you get your printer to take in cloth? Also, is there a program that you like to design your fabric?
Bonnie Ellis Posted - Mar 12 2012 : 7:39:10 PM
You can print your own fabric on your home computer. It's great for repairing quilts or mending, etc.

grandmother and orphan farmgirl
cranberryrose55 Posted - Mar 01 2012 : 9:43:20 PM
While at the doctor's office opened a March Country Living, the article in it said if you knew how to upload a file, you could create your own fabric. The company- Spoonflower will print your design on fabric. An endangered job is as designing your own product and making it with your handmade
fabric. Weaving takes time to warp the loom, and people won't pay me for the quality of the yarn and my time. Toymaker- a mom made one of a kind stuffed animals from cloth she designed at spoonflower.

A servant is one who gets excited about making somebody else successful!
DebbiE Posted - Mar 01 2012 : 2:22:58 PM
Someone mentioned weavers. There are a few small weaving mills around. There are a couple in Maine and some specialized places across the country. I have been weaving for years and there are many weavers around. Not many of us trying to make a living at it though.

Maine Farmgirl, weaving a life.
DebbiE Posted - Mar 01 2012 : 2:18:20 PM
Hi all,
There are blacksmiths out there. My son in law is a farrier, and there is are schools of blacksmithing around, you just have to look for them.

Maine Farmgirl, weaving a life.
KatTylee Posted - Feb 28 2012 : 07:39:46 AM

Where at in Wyoming? I know one in the Jackson Hole area, or did, and can find out one in Pinedale, but I don't know elsewhere. My dad was a farrier/blacksmith for almost 30 years. I'm sure I could find a few names for you.

~"Be yourself; everyone else is already taken."
Oscar Wilde~
Rejena Posted - Nov 18 2011 : 05:01:07 AM
My son is a budding blacksmith. He's fourteen. Has been working on it for two years and continues to find the challenges and new experiences exciting enough to go out there and get all coal dusty. (His fav. part is freaking me out when he comes in looking like a coalmine kid!)

We are moving to WY in the next few months. I hope he can connect out there with some greats as he did here in Pennsylvania.

Anyone know any great blacksmiths in WY?

"Kid Run Boer Goat Farm"
marmieto12 Posted - Sep 26 2011 : 07:37:29 AM
I trained and worked as a midwife for many years. I am finding it continues to grow. I have taught others to make soap, can and bake bread. I would like to offer classes, weekend workshops..someday :)

Laura~Dreaming of big girl farm...

Farmgirl # 148

Farm Girl Projects

My Vinyl Decor Business

The Girls Create on Facebook~
Wildcrafter Posted - Sep 22 2011 : 07:09:45 AM
Well, I'm an herbalist, wildcrafter and forager.


Cedar Mountain Herb School and Botanicals
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JILLSEWSIT Posted - Sep 19 2011 : 6:35:41 PM
Hi, There non-tech jobs everyway. I think they will become more in demand; we are absolutely a consumer people. There will be less & less plastic. Make it your goal. There are welders. I know one here; he's independent. I just worked a fairly popular flea market selling some of my stuffand made decent money. There are hundreds of people who do flea markets and craft fairs.
My real concern is that when I went shopping for a heavy bedspread not made in China, Mary Jane's version was made in China. To me that is not understandable. I know what China has done to our economy, our air, it's own people. No one wil listen to a list of China's gross wrongs. My family lived in Taipei, Taiwan for 2 yrs. Find someone else to do your work, Mary Jane. Disappointed, Jill

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