The Magic of "Handmade"
Why do we love to buy handmade and why should we? There are so many reasons to purchase handmade items. Here are some of my favorite reasons. What reasons do you have? Send me a message and I'll add your reason to my list!
1. The items are made individually and are often unique and made with human hands. Slight imperfections add to the value of the items. These things are not mass produced by machines that churn out identical parts. This is great for car parts and electronics, where exact machining is necessary, but not for personal items that we want to touch, feel, wear and identify with.
2. The handmade item took time and care to make. The purchaser took time and care to buy the items. They are personal and convey caring and love, thus making thoughtful gifts. Handmade goods often are inspired works of art that embellish life.
3. Buying from someone who loves their job enables that artisan to continue to make a living at what they love to do. There is no slave labor here.
4. It also helps support the many people who need supplemental income or who cannot work outside the home. This helps employ women, caretakers and retired persons as well as people with disabilities or folks who just need an alternative work environment or a simpler life style.
5. Purchasing handmade work supports the small business entrepreneur and encourages innovation and creativity. This is a movement away from huge corporate marketing.
6. Buying locally made goods can sometimes help reduce the carbon footprint buy requiring less transportation and importation of goods and by sometimes even using recycled goods. (I recycle packing materials and very little, only crumbs, of my glass goes to waste. Most of my work is done with the natural sunlight in my studio.) Since many artisans work from home studios, they do not need to drive to work every day. This can be a real blessing for artisans who live in remote areas like I do in West Virginia.
7. Purchasing artisan-made work supports the cultural richness of our world and contributes to the continued evolution of art by supporting artists. Handmade work carries on age-old traditions and helps keep our cultural heritage alive.
8. Buying handmade items connect the maker and the seller. This is personal and connects us to the things we own because every item has a story and a conversation. Buyers can commission something special that they can't buy at a big box store. The items can be as unique as we are! Today's art will become tomorrow's family heirloom.
9. There is something so essentially valuable and necessary about having handmade items in the home and on our bodies, no different from good home cooking. It nurtures us.
10. We don't live well without good art, music, food and love. These things make some of the magic in our lives.