Support HANDMADE this Holiday Season!

This holiday season I would like to inspire my friends and readers to BUY HANDMADE. While this may seem like a small thing to ask for, the impact of the decision can make a huge impact on the economy. In today’s day and age we all need to be more conscious of spending and where are hard-earned money is going, believe it or not this contributes to the bigger picture. Buy handmade and you support a true artist. You can be sure that human rights are respected in the making of your gift. Handmade gifts are for many reasons often more ecological than mass produced: up-cycled gifts are a big hit this year now that so many of us are “GOING GREEN” and of course handmade in most cases outlasts mass produced. I believe in supporting people, not companies. By giving your business to local artists and crafters you’re helping build a better economy without lining the pockets of overpriced corporations who’s only interest is the bottom line. People care about each other, companies care about themselves and getting as much of your hard earned money as possible. An artist will appreciate your business while a corporation demands it. When you look at the big picture, the choice seems pretty clear.

I can’t tell you what it means to independent artists and crafters that you chose THEM to supply a special gift. So many of us give our hearts and souls, not to mention extreme amounts of time to businesses. We put a bit of ourselves into everything we make, and we hope and pray that someone will come along and see the beauty we see. So when you do, it’s a great moment. It’s a little bit of validation of what I do. See, your choice makes a difference here too.

To me buying HANDMADE is a sound choice for so many reasons. I believe that Handmade items have a soul and enrich our lives in a way that mass-produced items simply can’t. A handmade gift conveys so much more than something pulled off the end-cap display of a mega store. Of course there are the obvious economic benefits of supporting independent makers and artists, but buying and giving handmade is, at heart, a loving act. You give gifts with love. When you buy handmade you can be sure that your gift is also made with love. I am also big on giving gifts that are unique and original as the person I have bought for. Handmade products are usually one of a kind or produced in small batches so you don’t have to worry about gifting something the person already has or giving the same gift as someone else. Instead you’ll be able to find something just as unique as the person you’re shopping for and nothing brings a smile to someone’s face better than knowing you really cared enough to find them the perfect gift.

Buying handmade makes me feel good about spending, knowing I’m supporting a fellow artist and that my money goes directly to them. I love the personal touch in dealing with an artist rather than a clerk in a department store who has no clue about the items they are selling! With online resources such as ETSY, the handmade revolution has meant that art is suddenly so much more accessible, and the pleasure derived from owning an original piece of art is made all the more special when you can email the artist and thank them. The one on one service and relationship built with an individual artists far surpasses that of a department store. I like knowing that I am building a personal connection with the person creating the items. Craftspeople love what they do and not only does it show in their work, but also in their attention to customer service. Have a question about how something is made or what inspired it? Ask away and the crafter will be thrilled to tell you all about it. Handmade items have a story and a history that mass produced products will never have.

It is also a wonderful feeling to know where, how and by who something was made. As an artist myself, I love the personal aspect. I particularly love knowing what inspired the artist to create their artwork, you cant get that from a department store item.

When we choose to buy handmade it 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. This can Build a higher appreciation for things that are made with quality, devotion, time, and care.

When looking at the plus of buying handmade the first thought that crosses my mind is that it is more environmentally friendly. Handmade items are usually made from natural raw materials with much less waste and machine emissions than mass produced items. If your goal is to leave a smaller carbon footprint on the planet that you can’t go wrong with locally produced handmade items.

Finding the perfect gift for a loved one should be fun, not frantic. Holiday shopping can be pretty hectic, tiresome and sometimes even dangerous with all the hustle and bustle in local shopping outlets. My thought: Why not save yourself the trouble of braving the overcrowded department stores and malls and try shopping online handmade outlets like Etsy. When you shop with individual artists on ETSY, you can often ask for extras like customization or even fully commissioned work to your exact specifications rather than having to settle for whatever the store has in stock.

Handmade products are made with passion. Crafters pour their time, talent and passion into everything they make. Store bought items might all be the same size and specifications, but they will never have the heart or soul that a good handmade product is made with. You are not just buying an item, you are buying a piece of the artist. You are supporting the love, hours, tears, future, family, confidence, mind, body and soul of that person. It creates an amazing relationship between 2 people: the buyer and seller. You are not just a number; you are a client, a supporter, a fan, and a collector of art.

I LOVE buying handmade items because they are more environmentally friendly since there is no use of large manufacturing machines, chemicals, labor and waste.
No human explotaition, the artists who make handmade things usually control the whole ‘fabrication’ process. When you buy handmade, you buy from the producer. You aren’t lining the over flowing pockets of some massive corporation or distanced executive. You are taking part in a process of revising our economic model to one that rewards hard work, talent, creativity, initiative and personal responsibility.

Unlike machine produced items, artists want each and every product they make to be of the very best quality as a testament to their work They don’t take mass produced shortcuts or shortchange the customer by using lower quality materials, just the best material carefully crafted into the best possible product.

I love that buying handmade means more value for your money. Handmade items are made to last. While mass produced items must be made quickly for as little money as possible handmade products are made from only the best materials and techniques. Corporations don’t mind if their products break down over time, then you’ll just have to buy another one. A well cared for handmade product on the other hand can last generations thus supports the concept of keepin’ it real!!

I like to know where my gifts come from. There is something empowering about taking control and making something yourself, or at least supporting someone who does. It’s making a conscious decision to spend your money on a quality item instead of a mass produced product built by machines and underpaid workers in a distant country.
When you buy handmade you are providing additional financial support for stay at home moms, who have chosen to stay home to take care of their children. Buying handmade means that you are helping sustain someone while fulfilling their DREAMS of being a painter, sculptor, milliner, printmaker, etc. without their having to worry about applying in a big corporation in our economically depressed economy.

I would love to see more people buy handmade gifts this year, help support handmade and the artists who work so hard to produce original works of art!

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12 thoughts on “Support HANDMADE this Holiday Season!

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