Because I really don't want to discourage anyone.
The honest truth is: I love that cross-stitch (really all needlework) is experiencing this renaissance at the moment. I am happy that all these new people are finding something they love and enjoy.
But I don't love how this massive influx of "hip" is changing things.
How pathetic is that?
"Subversive" cross stitch was fun when it first became a thing. Ha ha ha. You like stitching the word fuck.
The same is true of patterns that referenced pop culture. Hell, I stitched Ichijouji Ken myself. When someone loved something enough to spend the hours it took to create a cross stitch celebrating it, that was awesome. You could physically feel the fandom flowing through that piece.
But then someone (actually, many someones) saw a way to make money off of this and boom! This shit is everywhere. Seriously. I feel like 2015-2020 will be known as the year of the cacti and campers and vaguely feminist quotes. (Because stitching something feminist is ironic, don't 'cha get it? Ha ha ha? Never mind those of us who have actually fought for years to get our artwork recognized as a legitimate form of expression).
And that wouldn't even bother me but there really is only a finite amount of air in the room and as every one rushes to cash in on the "Oh look, cross stitch is cool!" phenomenon, "cheap" and "easy" become the determining factors in what gets put out there. Those of us who really want to create something that might last longer than the next pop-culture fad are getting pushed to the wayside. And yeah, sometimes I feel like my kindred and I are being pushed out of the "fandom," if you will, for not being "cool" or "hip" or "edgy" enough.
Add to that that I can be more than a little bit of a perfectionist when it comes to cross stitch. It's hard to put into words what my needlework means for me; what it does for me. And while I can acknowledge that I am forever improving my work and that no one springs forth fully skilled in ANY form, damn if it doesn't get old when 90+ percent of what is posted out there is amateurish hack jobs. And the ugliest part of me thinks that while a very, very, very small number of these folks might love this enough to stick around long enough to actually become skilled, most won't. They don't care like I care, they're not interested in putting in the time that I've put in, and so when they want to compare what they do to what I do, it pisses me off.
So yeah, that's pathetic and selfish and arrogant and more than a little sad, but there it is: my truth.