Craftwerk: The 10 Weirdest Prince Crafts On The Web

Craftwerk: The 10 Weirdest Prince Crafts On The Web

How would you decorate YOUR Paisley Crib? It would be hard, right? You’d want to make sure that everything was just so. If you were to, say, bring a potential paramour back to your Paisley Crib for an evening of music and intimacy, you wouldn’t want them to be disappointed. You’d want them to be overcome to the point of giddiness at the prospect of this NC-17-styled Wonka Factory, replete with all of the latest and greatest modern gadgetry from the field of romance. Just as he has understood so much about life and art during his dominant 35-year run on our consciousness, Prince perceived this truism early on — you cannot BRAG about your Paisley Crib and not actually possess the goods to back it up. And rest assured, Prince did and does. Take the following excerpt from Rob Tannenbaum’s and Craig Marks’s priceless oral history I Want My MTV in which a collaborator discusses his eye-opening experiences while working on a Prince video:

TIM CLAWSON, producer: We’d get a call from Steve Fargnoli –- ‘Prince has an idea for a video’ — and I’d meet him the next day. My favorite Prince pitch was for a video that never happened, for a song on Lovesexy. He was describing a scene where he’d be in bed with a girl, and beside the bed would be a neon sign that said ‘Lovesexy.’ He said, ‘We can do that at my house.’ I said, ‘We’ll build a sign on the set and have it transported over.’ And he said, ‘We can do it at my house.’ And I thought, Ohhh, I get it: You have a neon sign in your bedroom that says ‘Lovesexy.’ Right.”

Well, that’s just beyond the call of awesome. Obviously, for the same reason none of us can make Sign ‘O’ The Times, we also cannot hope to compete with this sort of visionary, vanguard romanticism. But the many good and noble people of the Internet have made their appeal and had their say. They’ve been taught by Prince and now they want to help us get experienced as well — through homespun handiwork. Sexy, lusty things, replete with the occasional religious allegory. Some are for sale, and others exist, much like the man himself, merely for exhibition purposes. Anyway, here are 10 of the best Prince-inspired artworks the web has to offer. Prince + crafts = what a ride.

Start Crafting here.

9. Prince Clock

Does his Purple Majesty, as has occasionally been rumored, actually possess total control over the time-space continuum? How else to explain his uncanny capacity to wed music's latest trends to the history of rock & roll and soul music with such shrugging ease? It's probably just because he is a once-in-a-lifetime genius, but maybe this special-edition clock fashioned from the original Purple Rain 7" single can lend a little insight into this issue as well. Does it even … you know, tell the time? Not like Morris Day, but actually the hour of the day? Does it even matter? Nobody could ever argue that this would not serve as a constant reminder of the important things in life: love, spirituality, and a special emphasis on a certain kind of satisfaction. As the seller indicates: This item can be hung. Yeah, you better believe it.

8. Pocket planner for 2012-2013

Do you like calendars? Of course you hate calendars. But even still, you will probably dig this one. This is the Jam Of The Year (and last year) for all of you planning-minded types. It's just the thing to whip out when trying to shore up your schedule with everyone from potential employers to the dentist to that cute guy or girl at the courthouse (actually, please, do not whip out anything else). This calendar is both titillating and frustrating, reminding you that you can only Do It All Night or Party Like It's 1999 on certain days each year.

7. Prince Cassette Clutch:

Look, sometimes racecars burn rubber in your pants –- we've all been there. That phrase can convey a lot of meanings, none of them particularly positive. The crucial thing to ask yourself in this situation -- before the SWAT team arrives and the history is written -- is this: What sort bag are you holding at the time? That's where this purse comes in. Capacious enough to hold all of your accessories, and well suited for any emergency, this item will no doubt contain every necessity imaginable. What's more, this moving tribute to the underappreciated cassette era brings to mind all of the warmth and creative possibility of the pre-digital age, when "taping over things" was both a skill and an imperative.

6. Guitar Pick Mosaic

You know what we forget about Prince? Absolutely nothing. But do you know what we forget about Prince if we forget anything? It's that as a guitarist, he absolutely embarrasses the greatest the business otherwise has to offer. Check out this clip of the man absolutely destroying the efforts of a "supergroup performance" of "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" at George Harrison's posthumous induction into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame in 2004. Steve Winwood is to this day attempting to figure out what just happened. That is one reason why this collection of guitar picks fashioned into the Prince logo is not only entirely appropriate, but arguably mandatory. One senses as a sidelight, above and beyond the vaulting ambition to become the best soul and pop purveyor of the past three decades, Prince thought it might be cool to play guitar like Jimi Hendrix. And so it was done.

5. Prince Zine

If we are operating at a baseline understanding that print journalism is not the growth industry it once was, the fact that this zine exists at all –- sixty (60!) pages of random facts, musings and hand-drawn art -– is surprising and impressive. And at first blush it looks to be pretty informative. Like did you know that keyboardist Gayle Chapman left the Revolution during a tour with Rick James because she didn't want to simulate oral sex during the song "Head"? Good factoid! (Craftwerk's subject matter from two weeks back apparently possessed no such inhibition). In all seriousness, the Prince Zine would appear to possess all the earmarks of a charming labor of love, as well as being a bargain at just five bucks.

4. Prince/Michael Jackson T-shirt

Okay, so it looks like the wisenheimer who posted this has already taken the time to explain the presumed levity inherent in Prince's face appearing on a shirt whose text reads "Michael Jackson." Per the captions: "THAT IS NOT MICHAEL JACKSON PICTURED, IT IS PRINCE. Wow. Mind = Blown, right?" Anyway, we're going to go ahead and take the opposing view -- this isn't funny at all! What kind of a sick twist would find this evil fraud remotely comical? Is it not difficult enough to get through your average day without some would-be "out of the box" designer perpetrating a creepy mindfuck by interposing the name and image of two American soul icons? Why is this funny??? Still, that isn't to say that under the right circumstances, something like this couldn't be useful. We are thinking sinister, Zero Dark Thirty types of thoughts now...

3. Prince Trivet

Did you know what a trivet is? It protects your countertops when things get particularly hot. So, it doesn't really BEG the question, but we'll ask anyway: How many trivets does Prince have on his countertops? Trivets on trivets? How hot do Prince's countertops get? Eh, lets stop there. Actually let's just start over. Anyway, Prince "doesn't serve ribs." Do you? If so, you might want this handsome Prince-themed trivet, which like most things Prince-related has been thoroughly glazed and fired. Ahem. Wait -- let's start again. Anyway, it's a nice-looking piece which the seller helpfully points out can be either "displayed or actually used." OK, we don't think we can do this anymore.

2. Prince Paper Doll

Prince once referred to himself in a song as "that skinny motherfucker with the high voice." That hasn't got anything to do in particular with this item, but we haven't been able to figure out where to mention that yet, so there you have it. Anyway, for anyone who has ever wanted to strip Prince down like a Peter Paul's Almond Joy, seize the day with this unique take on the classic paper doll! Lots of good things going on here, perhaps most importantly the delicate attention paid to rendering the classic poet's blouse and purple suit ensemble that absolutely no one else on the planet Earth could ever wear without going directly to jail. Also glad to see the wispy, pencil thin mustache, which many historians consider to be the source of his prodigious early powers. (NB: No historians have said this.)

1. Prince On A Unicorn

So, what do U ride 2 work? Is that right? Well, you're not Prince. While it is unclear whether this portrait of The Artist as a young man was created from life sittings or photographs (likely both), this meticulously detailed rendering of Purple Rain-era Prince captures all of the sensuality and style of a man on his way to his next destination of conquest. (Also uncertain whether or not that's Darling Nikki's castle off in the distance, but most experts agree it probably is). And while lesser art critics might judge this painting as "amateurish" or "confused," for our purposes, we wouldn't change a stroke.

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