Last year Poppytalk asked artists, designers and shop owners to give them reasons why people should buy handmade whenever possible. Their responses became the 101 reasons to buy handmade.
You can take a look at all of the responses, but here are my favorites:
craftspeople is a conscious decision. people need to be more conscious of
spending of where their hard-earned money is going, changing hands etc. this
contributes to the bigger picture.
give gifts with love. When you buy handmade you can be sure that your gift is
also made with love. You can think of love as a fairy dust that has been
sprinkled over your gift throughout the making and gift giving process. And
that fairy dust will make your loved one feel so much better than formaldehyde
knowing I'm supporting someone's passion.
back to the days of old when craftsmanship, creativity and quality were
paramount - You are buying items not mass-produced and impersonal but are very
personal not only to the buyer, but to the maker.
have to say that you bought it at Ikea.
normally, buying handmade does not require fighting for a parking space, having
your ears pierced by blaring holiday music, walking around in a daze under
flourescent lights, fighting to push a shopping cart with one bad wheel, or
having a cashier you don't know ask for your phone number and zip code.
ITS THE BEST WAY TO AVOID
People don’t hand craft things just to make money. They’re not just the product
of a slick R&D department for profit. They make things that involve years
of learned skills, passion, enthusiasm, commitment and sincerity.
handmade shows our children that not everything in this world needs to be mass
produced. It teaches them to love and appreciate the unique and the imperfect.
And it inspires them to do their own creating as well.
The Oakland Salvation Army needs at least 2000 toys for under privileged children from babies and toddlers to preteens and teens - as of the 11th only 200 had been donated.
No matter where you are this holiday season the problem is the same. Donations are down, while the need has skyrocketed. People who were not too long ago in a position to give of their time or money, are finding themselves in the receiving line.
If you're not sure where you local Salvation Army toy drop off station is, contact your local fire station - they often do toy drives this time of year.
Or just give a little something to the man or woman ringing the bell with the red bucket. The money they collect this time of year is a huge part of what will sustain them throughout the rest of the year
First I experimented with my own shirts - mostly inexpensive tanks from forever 21 that I'd long since grown tired of. In my trials, errors and quests for answers I stumbled upon several tutorials for "recycled T-shirt necklaces"
They were all fine, variations on a similar theme; the cutting of T shirts, the stretching of material, the tying of knots, the wrapping and tucking and, eventually, the wearing. All well and good. But I was interested in making something a bit more polished. Keeping with the simplicity of similar T shirt strand-necklaces, but giving it a little oomph ... and I hated the knots, and the tucking - all so very UNpolished.
So I tinkered, and tried a few things, then I started scouring thrift stores for T shirts that were well taken care of - no faded, threadbare shirts that looked like they had been used to dry the Volvo after the car wash.
This is what I came up with:
and, if you're really going to accessorize, then you've got to have a bracelet, right?
The first one - the forest green necklace, sold the morning after I posted it to etsy :)
I'll be making more as the weeks pass, I think they work both as necklaces and even a fun take on the infinity scarf if you get a thick enough bunch together. So far I've just been doing solid colors but I'm already envisioning fun, spring-time color combinations....
quick shop update -
I'm Sold out!
I'm all sold out of the ribbed neckwarmers for the time being. That's right! You've got to be quick :)
More are in the works - let me know if you have any color suggestions or requests. Also, anyone have good ideas about where to find cool vintage buttons? I'm always looking to beef up my stash.
Sarah ofLa SuaVoce Designs has started a craftgawker-like feature on her blog. I was one of the lucky people chose for a spot on her inaugural showcase. I'm very excited, and you should go take a look, there are some other great artists that are also featured.
More info and insights to come but right now it's past my bedtime :)