Arts and Crafts: A movement that sought to restore the medieval tradition of handicraft in reaction to the spread of mass production, originating in late 19th century Great Britain. Designs were based on simple forms and natural materials, as much for purposes of social refrom as for aesthetic reasons. In America, the movement became less an idealization of the skilled craftsperson than a democratic interest in embedding the virtues of honesty and simplicity in everyday high-quality design.