Go Handmade for the Holidays

Published on 11/20/2016

  • Go Handmade for the Holidays

As more and more businesses are placed under the scrutiny spotlight and found to be employing unfair business practices, people are increasingly turning toward handmade, fair trade and sustainable goods. The rise and success of Etsy, small businesses and Amazon Homemade attests to that, as do the millions of voices now crying foul and calling out their once favorite brands.

Handcrafted goods offer a quality and thoughtfulness that run-of-the-mill department store trinkets just can’t match.
How can you give a unique handmade gift this season?

Shop local craft fairs

Your community is filled with artisans, and they often display their wares in local craft sales held in community centers, at church bazaars, in shopping centers and during craft fairs. Take the time to meet artists in your town and learn how each piece of art on display reflects a uniqueness that you won’t find with machine-made merchandise.

Visit small businesses

Small Business Saturday takes place on the first Saturday following Thanksgiving, November 26th. If you haven’t popped in the door of small businesses in your neighborhood, this is a good time to check them out and enjoy added savings.

Small, locally owned coffee shops and other businesses often feature the work and goods of local artists for sale in addition to their own products. This is a good time to introduce yourself to neighbors and cash in on seasonal savings.

Put the focus of fair trade

Fair trade goods are those items made by artists, crafts persons, engineers, farmers and others around the world that work together to jointly produce a work of art. Each person puts their own unique touch on a fair trade good, and each is paid fairly for their time.

You can find fair trade goods locally in grocery stores, small businesses, co-ops, shopping centers and craft fairs. You’ll also find an abundance of fair trade offerings when you shop online.

Look for handmade online

If you’re not the crafty sort, you can still give homemade by giving a handcrafted item that someone else has put together. Handmade merchandise is available through eBay, Etsy, websites like Cooleather.com, and elsewhere.

Give of yourself

Whether you knit, crochet, do pottery, paint, excel at woodworking, create music or have another skill you’ve mastered, you can always share it with others. Those who don’t consider themselves artistically inclined can give of their time by shopping for an elderly neighbor, visiting shut-ins, shoveling snow for a relative, or fulfilling other needs in your community.

Give handcrafted, fair trade and sustainable this year. Your every purchase really does matter. And give of yourself, because that’s the most generous gift of all.

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