Monday, March 9, 2009

Handmade Crafts

With all the adorable handmade crafts available on the internet these days, I don't understand why I'm not drowning in sassy earrings.

I also don't understand why my walls are not covered in screenprints dreamed up by local artists or why my couch isn't bedecked with funky, mind-altering pillows.

To address, and hopefully remedy, seriously confounding realities like these, I signed the Buy Handmade Pledge today and vowed to "buy handmade for myself and my loved ones, and to ask others to do the same."

I plan to buy handmade goods to support:
  • Local artists
  • Small-scale and local production of goods
  • Availability of original and interesting wares
  • The production of more environmentally friendly products, especially those that recycle and make the old new again
As I set out to buy more handmade goods, here are stores I'll be cruising:
And here are some blogs and such:
Well, I guess it's time to go shopping! Take the Buy Handmade Pledge today!

p.s. I have to admit that I don't make enough money to buy everything handmade, but I'm looking forward to buying at least a few pairs of sassy earrings and maybe even a funky pillow. My neck always hurts when I lay on the couch...

Image courtesy of Matte Stephens. Buy this print or one of his many others on Etsy.com.

25 comments:

erin first! said...

I bought some adorable throw pillows from a seller called Olive on Etsy. They look amazing on my bed, and they weren't any more expensive than buying from a major chain store. Good luck!

kate said...

I love your blog!! I have to sit down and read it through more next time my kid goes down for a long nap. I find it crazy that I'm the ONLY mom in my play group that uses glass bottles and cloth diapers. That's about 15 other moms who don't. And that's just my play group. Oh, and the home made yogurt thing is great. If I don't make a batch at least once a week my husband whines. SO GOOD, and far more good little bugs in there than in store bought brands to keep you healthy.

Looking forward to reading more when I have time! -Kate

kokolotus said...

I haven't shopped at all the links you have listed, but I can vouch that etsy is bursting at the seams with handmade goodness! I try to support at least one handmade crafter/artisan each month.

Anonymous said...

What would be a good gift to get someone who is anti-plastic?

Deborah said...

Relative to the subject matter of your blog, I have been trying to think of what we all could do with the very numerous yellow/brown prescription bottles the world produces and uses. We toss them away when they are empty and need a refill. Think of the millions of people doing this! I try to recycle by using them for sewing needle storage, Q-tip storage, button storage, etc. Does anyone have more ideas or thoughts for some type of creative use for these wasted items?

Steve S said...

There's not a whole lot of this for men unfortunately. Maybe sometime soon I could make my own.

ps, I heard about you on npr!

PLD said...

congrats on making it big time! i just found your blog off the following link: http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=102062969

-congrats! PLD

Emma said...

I absolutely adore your blog? But how can I follow it?

CelesteCraft said...

I just stumbled onto your blog, and I want to thank you (on behalf of myself and all the other Etsy artists) for supporting the Buy Handmade movement! It makes a big difference to us as individual artists, and to our larger communities!

LifeLessPlastic said...

Emma, Thanks so much for your support.Scroll down a bit, and you'll see a button on the left that says Subscribe to RSS. That will allow you to follow the blog. Thanks! Jeanne

Rachael said...

Very interesting blog - I enjoy it. I haven't checked it out enough to know, but have you checked out the diva cup? It's a feminine hygiene product . . . reusable! Think of all the plastic that wouldn't be used if all women used something like that. And it's hypoallergenic. Seriously, if you haven't looked at it yet you need to! I haven't used it yet, but I fully intend to (due to recent childbirth I haven't needed anything for that).

ThreadBeaur said...

I just saw an article about shampoo on my yahoo front page, and there was a link! This is not the first time I have been by, and I think your blog is great.
I love etsy for handmade items. They have such a variety you can find virtually anything you can imagine!

Peachy Cheek said...

Hi there,

So glad I found your blog. I love it!
Thanks for such a great post too. I definitely believe in shopping handmade and supporting local artists:) I am actually a seller on Etsy ;)

My boyfriend and I are always challenging each other on what we can do next to eliminate plastic from ourlives. Whether it be our water bottles, to packaging.

Which is another great reason to buy handmade, you never have to worry about large plastic containers:)

Thanks again and I will definitely be following your blog from here on out:)

Take care!

Kim

Anonymous said...

Hi, I saw the article in yahoo! and came to see your blog. In your quest to find hand made, may I suggest what majority of Indians do. We use lentils powder, any lentil really, to wash our face and body. It feels the skin feeling clean and does not strip it off sebum. So your skin is break out free and hair is dandruff free. To make it smell good, you could just infuse it with lemon zest, lavender etc.

The Writers Blog said...

I enjoyed reading your blog. I made a resolution this year to recycle as much as possible, get rid of plastic shopping bags, use a compost pile to recycle veggies and coffee grounds and reuse grey sink water on my grass and garden. So far we're trying to remember to use the cloth shopping bags, doing great on the recycle stuff and veggies and still working on a schedule for the grey water.

Keep up the good work!

Joanne

The Writers Blog said...

I'm going to try out the yogurt recipe and will report back. We got a veggie garden started, so far hard work but it will be worth it, I'm sure. Trying to downsize with 'stuff' we don't need, but it's hard, so many emotional attachments (yuck). My daughter is going vegetarian so we're going to try to make our own tofu too.
Joanne

judith said...

Jeanne, I found you when reading the article "When It Comes To Shampoo, Less Is More" on NPR.org.

I make cold-processed soap. One of my items is an all-natural shampoo bar. It looks like a bar of soap, but has different oils which are moisturizing for your hair.

This type shampoo solves two problems: 1) It is hand crafted and 2) It does not require a plastic bottle.

You can check for a local soapmaker to see if one is available in your area. See if they make shampoo bars.

Elizabeth Morisette said...

Great Blog! Heard about you on NPR. I use a lot of plastic in my art, but is is plastic that has had another life with someone else. In you opinion is this kind of plastic evil? or are there degrees of plastic evilness?

Going Crunchy said...

Love Etsy!

Chicago Vegan said...

Wow, thank you so much for posting this. I've been making bath products for my friends and family for years now and am just getting out to the handmade retail locations and festivals. But my biggest accomplishment is making the packaging from direct mail that my neighbors give to me. I throw in herb garden seeds with the pulp from amex ads, shop local adverts, and bed bath and beyond coupons. Let em dry on the radiator, or on my back porch, and wrap my soaps up for sale. I love explaining my ugly packaging. I love to think that yummy basil leaves come from my companies garbage. It's slow to make but worth it.

Ennaeel said...

I am all for buying handmade items but if you order it online and it has to be shipped to you it seems to somewhat defeat the purpose...guess we should consider the eco footprint of ordering handmade things from afar...
But overall your blog and attempt to live without plastic is really admirable!

Ethically Engineered said...

Ennaeel, I am 100% with you. Buy local. Buy local. Buy local. However, as someone who makes stuff and sells stuff I've worried and fretted over the question of whether or not to even make stuff available online or ship stuff out. Traveling by air raises your carbon footprint more than driving. So I mentioned this to another do it yourself-er and she suggested that the USPS was the best public transit system ever. Well, I wasn't convinced. So I did some hunting and found http://www.carboncatalog.org/providers. This allows me to sleep at night but offsetting the carbon is only a temporary compromise until more Chicago-ans think about buying local.
Jack

soapdeli said...

I make handmade soaps and buy lots of handmade products whenever possible as well! Have you heard of http://byhand.me yet? It's a free artisan co-op to bring handmade artists together with buyers regardless of venue to make handmade personal again.

Plastic Cards said...

Thanks a lot for sharing such a useful information about to the plastic Cards.Now i definitely follow your blog.

Fabtastic Designs said...

What great ideas you have! Makes you stop and think about the way we live. I love Etsy and Shophandmade. I have a shop on shophandmade that sells fun, fashionable and affordable jewelry! Check it out!