Friday, November 18

Buying Handmade for the Holidays


The holiday season starts at a different time for everyone. According to some retail giants it now starts in September. Then there are some die-hards that refuse to put up a holiday decoration until December 1st or 10th or 20th (really?). But for me, each year the holiday season starts right about now. The week before Thanksgiving fits for me because it's far enough past my birthday that all those celebrations have passed and it's usually about the time I get an email from my mom asking what I want this year (yep, we still do that!). So, in honor of my start to the holiday season here is my first post on the holidays...

I know you’ve heard or seen promotions for ‘Buy Handmade This Holiday!’ You probably have good intentions, “Yes, I will buy handmade this year! Yes, I will support the little guy! I will visit every craft show, every Saturday until I find all the perfect gifts and I will not step foot in a mall.” Fast forward to early December, when you realize there are still dozens of people on your list. And what could you really find for your great-uncle Roland at a craft fair? And your mother-in-law is really picky about quality, she would never appreciate anything ‘crafty.’ As these thoughts start going through you head (right along side the lyrics to Jingle Bell Rock and White Christmas), panic mode sets in. And with a small amount of easily overcome guilt you get in the car and head straight for the closet mall. 
Do not panic. This scenario can be avoided, I promise! Here’s a few reasons why buying handmade can and should be your holiday plan:
  • The wealth of sites online that cater to handmade buyers makes holiday shopping as easy as a click.
  • The handmade industry is a long way from the days of popsicle sticks and glue - lots of high quality goods are available that will please even the pickiest of people.
  • Everyone loves to have something unique. Buying handmade lets you give your loved ones the gift of never bumping into someone else wearing their same upcycled orange and purple plaid beanie.
  • Handmade gifts are as wide ranging as the people who make them - meaning your bound to find someone creating items with a personality as quirky as your cigar-smoking, marathon-running great-uncle. 
  • And, of course you brag to everyone that you helped out the little guy...all without having to occupy wall street for weeks on end. 

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