Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Will You Take the Pledge?

Have you guys heard of It's an online website where you can pledge to buy handmade goods this holiday season. As of right now 5706 people have participated. Why buy handmade? Here are some good reasons:

Buying handmade is better for people, better for the environment, and better for giving truly special and well-crafted gifts. The ascendancy of chain store culture and global manufacturing has left us all dressing, furnishing, and decorating alike. The connection between producer and consumer has been lost. Buying handmade helps them reconnect.

I already bought some Christmas gifts this year that are handmade. One of my favorite places to shop is Etsy. I thought it might be fun to showcase some of my favorite shops. Maybe I'll do this a few times during the holiday season.

The first shop is called Sweet Traditions. And speaking of sweet, take a look at this adorable blue clown named Frenchie. You definately want to check out the shop listing to see other pictures showcasing his adorable blue and ecru calico outfit. He's one of a kind and the perfect gift for an older child (because some of his accessories are inappropriate for little ones) or an adult. Another bonus-this toy is lead free! And if you're not the cute clown type, you should check out some of Sweet Tradition's other creations like Miss Morose or Bad Az Billy. Also, just added to the shop are some adorable ornaments!

Next up is Just Kiddn. My favorite listings in the shop are the awesome and adorable booties like the ones shown here. These are called Mod Daisy design and can be ordered in 0-3 or 3-6 month size. You can also find other listings for toddler sized shoes. This Etsy seller also has cute clothes, bibs, and hats. Shipping is super cheap and the prices on the items are too. Have you ever priced baby crib shoes? You'd definately be spending more than $10.00.

On the topic of kids, another one of my favorite shops is, If Wishes Were Horses. The header describes the shop items as "One-of-a-kind outfits for kids inspired by Japanese fashions, vintage clothing and old children's books, crafted from natural fabrics such as linen and cotton. Each garment features special touches such as lined bodices, french seams and hand-sewn hems." The outfit shown here is a toddler Red Jinbei Kimono Jacket. How adorable is that? I doubt you could find something like this at Target. It's made from 100% cotton in a maroon color and constructed with french seams. A dragonfly is embroidered in white at the back seam. The shop also has smocks, aprons, footwear, and dresses.

I can't wait for James to be old enough to buy him one of these! This shop is called Lil B Designs also known as Dine & Doodles. Here you can find whimsical, fun, and functional products to entertain your kids on the go. What's shown here is the Carnival chalk cloth Placemat. One side has funky fabric and the other side is oilcloth. According to the description, "Oilcloth and laminated cotton are durable, stain-resistant and waterproof so it is super easy for parents to clean and ideal for children to use." So how cool is that? Roll this baby up, take it to a restauarant, entertain your kid, roll it up and take home. The shop also sells Roll n Go Crayons too.

Last but not least is Squid Glass. This shop has a huge assortment of fused glass and millefiori pendants which is what this one is. Called, Flowers Drifting this pendant measures about 25x38mm (1x1.5 inches) and is kiln fired and annealed. It is gorgeous! I really dig a blue one called Water Garden. I would love to work with glass! Check out the shop for other cool creations.

How about you? What are some of your favorite shops or sellers? Where do you buy handmade?

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