Welcome August August 03 2014

The summer has been flying by but I'm embracing this new month and the beautiful weather. Rich Gypsy has been doing great being sold at House of Bleu Boutique in Port Jefferson, NY. We couldn't be happier with our success so far.

I read this today and thought it should be shared. It is so important to support local businesses especially those in the handmade product community.

Benefits of Supporting the Handmade Movement

"Handmade, by basic definition means, "Made by hands with tools, but not machines." This term has evolved into more than just something created with one's hands into an industry where we support the individual artisan and their craft. Here are some benefits to buying 'Handmade' items and acknowledging the importance of small business.

Local Businesses Keep It In Your Community

Many suburban and urban areas have boutiques where items are sold on consignment from local artisans. Jewelry, clothing, body products, and home decor are just a few of the many things you will find. These creations may be made by your friend or neighbor, your child's teacher, or someone with close ties to your community. The boutique may also be owned by a resident in your area. When an item is sold, the profits go to the artisan, not a big corporation, with a percentage given to the owner of the boutique (actual dollar amount is dependent on their contractual agreement). Supporting your neighborhood business helps boost the economy directly in your area and gives your local artisan a means of income.

And don't forget the holiday craft shows! These venues offer a variety of handcrafted items benefiting organizations such as schools, churches, and youth programs. This is a wonderful way to find the perfect gift and support these community groups.

Artists Color Your World

Want Art? Visit your local gallery! From photography to paintings, sculptures and pottery, you are bound to find something to add to your collection. These artists, like the artisans in boutiques, may very well be residents of your community. Many pieces offered in this venue are One-of-a-Kind, therefore adding to its worth. Who knows? The purchase of a painting or sculpture by a local artist may be the creative catalyst this person needs to reach the regional or even global scale! You are not only acquiring a work of art, you are helping an individual acknowledge their artistic potential, which is rewarding in its own right.

Small Business on a Global Scale

With the internet, buyers are able to connect with the individual artist or artisan in a global community. Many sites such as Etsy, ArtFire, and Zibbet support and promote the handmade ideals. A person can set up shop either for free or with a nominal fee, depending on the site they choose, and sell their work to a worldwide market. Buyers are able to find unique items, inquire about custom orders, and support the small business. These shop owners offer a more personable online retail experience than the average catalog purchase, because their wares are the result of their own creative efforts.

Be An Individual, Support Creative Intelligence

Supporting handmade products not only helps artists and artisans build their small businesses, it also encourages buyers to embrace their individuality. Why by a necklace or bracelet that is mass produced, when you can wear a One-of-a-Kind design? Many people with unconventional, albeit quirky, tastes are able to find themselves at home in the handmade community. Artists and artisans create from their heart, first and foremost, keeping their offerings true to the individual experience, instead of products pumped out strictly for profit. Buyers, in turn, are promoting self-expression in its most authentic form and celebrating the work of the independent artist/artisan.

So the next time you decide to buy a gift, or even treat yourself to something new, think 'Handmade' first. Support small business, celebrate self-expression, and help the individual artist/artisan make their dreams a reality."