Kindly shared from the blog of EtsyVeg member Erin, of Krug's Eco-Logic. Thanks, Erin!
I'm so honored to be a part of a very special Etsy team - EtsyVeggies (all members are vegan or vegetarian and their items are animal/cruelty-free). I recently asked everyone to convey their personal feelings about what makes their craft in particular better suited when bought handmade, versus at a 'big box' store. Here's what they had to say:
Lisa, from Panda With Cookie, feels that her little monsters are truly one of a kind, and handcrafted with love. She explains that going to a big box store will only find you repeats of the same item, time and time again, with much less quality and care going into the products. She also feels that her products really reflect her personality. What warehouse, conveyor belt product can give you that?
A fellow soaper, Kelle of Kelle's Kitchen and I (Erin, of Krug's Eco-Logic), both feel that our soaps and bath and body products are far superior to anything you'd find sitting on store shelves for months (or years) on end. Bath and Body products at 'big box' stores are formulated to sit for extended periods, thus, cannot possibly contain all the rich goodness you'll find in handcrafted soaps and lotions. In addition, we carefully hand select natural, vegan, earth-derived ingredients who's only mission is to soothe and pamper your delicate skin.
Ashley, of NY Crochet, feels that, although there are items (crocheted hats, decorative items, dish cloths) in 'big box' stores similar to those you may find in her shop, she adores putting her own spin on them. She adds cute bunny or mouse ears to her adorable baby hats, which can even be custom made just for you or your loved one. She also adds that her carefully-crocheted items will far-outlast any factory, mass-produced product you'd find elsewhere. So although initially you're spending less at a big box store, you will end up replacing the damaged item the following season... and thus, emptying your wallet. Buying a handmade, quality item is much more cost-effective.
Celeste from Cricket's Creations boasts that her scarves are not made with rough, course yarn like factory-produced scarves. She carefully chooses the types of yarn she uses, and takes care to ensure that they are not only absolutely gorgeous to accent your outfit and keep you warm... but also very comfortable. Her yarns are comfortable, crocheted with a sturdy technique to ensure durability over the long-haul - not just for one season.
Melissa from Rock Your Style feels that, in her shop, handcrafted goods allow the customer the opportunity to BE the designer. She says that you don't have to know how to make the gorgeous adornments... just know what you want. She's open to handcrafting one-of-a-kind pieces that you, the customer have designed! You can NOT get that at a "big box" store!
Adrienne of Au Clair de la Lune feels that she can employ her techniques to utilize upcycled or recycled materials in her craft. She goes on to say that when you purchase handmade items, you also know that there are no child laborers, no one is being treated unfairly, and the artisan is happy creating your unique item. Crafters have the freedom to work at their leisure and choose the work load with which they are comfortable - allowing time for friends and family, and the real priorities in life.
Heather of 3 am Art Productions feels that having the ability to casually browse her photos in her online shop saves you the time and money spent having to drive to a gallery. Browsing at your leisure in your own home also relieves you of the pressure to buy that you might find in a gallery, according to Heather. Buying handmade also gives you the opportunity to trade goods. Can you possibly imagine walking up to a clerk at a 'big box' store and handing them one of your crafts in exchange for one of their products? Check out Heather's fabulous photos! What a great eye!
All of these fabulous EtsyVeggie artists have so much to offer in their online shops, and handcraft each piece with love and care ... just for you!
Thank you for buying handmade!!