I spend a lot of my leisure time looking at food, décor, fashion, craft blogs and lifestyle-related websites. Maybe too much. It’s my Internet version of window-shopping I guess, a bit of harmless fun that occasionally results in an impromptu purchase but more often than not doesn’t cost me a dime.
Well, maybe that’s not entirely true. Because I do buy something from these sites — I buy into the idea that what I see on Goop or Smitten Kitchen is infinitely translatable in my own life. Scanning through all of those high-resolution images of beautifully turned out desserts and homemade gifts has a curious effect on my mind. It makes me delude myself into thinking that if I just follow the recipe that my braised cinnamon chicken is going to turn out just like Gwyneth’s, and that if I follow the instructions to the letter my craft project is going to look just like that adorable embroidered tote on Etsy.
The reality is very different. Usually I forget an essential ingredient, or add a tablespoon of chili flakes instead of a teaspoon, or I just can’t seem to get enough air into the eggs to make a proper meringue. Often I wonder, if like me, Gwyneth finds herself pulling a long human hair out of her mouth while eating her fabulous dinner or with a guilty gulp watches her guests discretely do the same.
Fortunately, there’s a place for the hopelessly untalented to go online and share their ineptitude. The Daily Mail alerted me to Pinstrosity, a blog that specializes in the distribution of images that record culinary, crafting and DIY blunders and disasters for posterity.
Cakes that look nothing like the visions of decadence that inspired them, and homemade soaps that look like crayons that have melted in the sun — you’ll find it all there. More important, you may find something else: a sisterhood of triers and failers, women who never give up on the dream of perfection they’re relentlessly sold, but who still have the grace to see the humour in failing to be perfect and the good sense to glory in being human.
When it comes to DIY, what do you find the hardest to master? Let us know in the comment section below.