Learn about Life in the 1920s

Traditional crafts and hobbies remained popular but they began to give way to new competitors. For example... radio was an exciting new invention that captured everyones imagination, and all every boy wanted to do was build a crystal radio set.

Woman making crafts

Women's Crafts

Handcrafts passed down from mother to daughter were a popular recreational activity in the 1920's, especially when the introduction of electric lighting meant the dark hours of winter and evenings could be gainfully employed.

How to Make
Beaded Bags

Most girls were trained by their mothers, and also at school, in household skills... a pattern that had been followed for generations. Embroidery, which had been used for decades to decorate dresses, handbags, towels, handkerchiefs, and various other items began to decline in popularity as store bought items began to take over. Consequently girls were less interested in gaining and using embroidery skills. The same could be said for crocheting and similar crafts, like tatting, tapestry, rug making, macrame, and lace making.

As well as the traditional crafts of sewing, knitting, crocheting, quilting, millinery and embroidery, there were also popular activities like pyrography, beading, stenciling, china painting, sealing wax art, leather craft, weaving and window transparencies. The techniques of how to make paper flowers which had been passed down from mothers to daughters for centuries reached a peak during the nineteen-twenties. Artificial flowers could be used for decoration on millinery, for hair and dress ornaments, and for home decor.

Mens and Boys Hobbies

Male oriented hobbies were often centered around woodwork and metalwork and there was strong interest in the emergence of radio. From building radios or model making to wood turning and toy making or creating mission style furniture, the diversity of after hours tinkering in the home workshop knew no bounds.

Books, and articles in magazines like Popular Mechanics and Popular Science, stirred people's imaginations and so everyone wanted to become an inventor like Thomas Edison. Magazines published do-it-yourself books on every topic imaginable and well equipped home workshop fitted out with a workbench and tools were full of busy boys and men creating home-made items from published plans and instructions.

Fishing, hunting and camping with their associated crafts like rod building, fly-tying, canoe making and tracking were also very popular.

Woman Cooking on Camp Cooker