27 Sep '11, 4pm

How DIY projects make you buy less stuff

The "IKEA effect" says that we value things we have built ourselves (even if those things are frankly a little crappy). I'd propose an extension -- call it the "DIY effect," which says we tend to hold onto, repair, and upgrade things we build ourselves, breaking us out of the consumerist cycle of trashing what's old so we can capitalize on the (often-illusory) advantages of the latest and greatest. A paper in the Journal of Consumer Psychology called "When labor leads to love" explores this phenomenon in a laboratory setting, concluding that … participants bid 460% more for their own origami creations versus ones created by others, almost the market-driven value of cranes and frogs created by origami experts. The authors also discovered that participants thought others would value their origami creations highly, despite assigning little value to the amateur creations of ot...

Full article: http://www.grist.org/list/2011-09-26-how-diy-and-the-ikea...

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