Monday, September 8, 2008

It's Not Just About the Chocolate Cake!

“Where did you get that gorgeous piece of pottery?” Sally exclaimed as she sat down at the table where we were about to indulge ourselves in pieces of dark chocolate cake with dark chocolate frosting.

“Oh, I’m so glad you asked. That’s handmade by an artist in Colorado. She makes marvelous raiku pottery. And lucky for me, she has a store on Etsy. We are even on the same team.....the Boomers and Beyond Team.”

“Etsy?” Sally asked. “What is Etsy? What’s a Boomers and Beyond Team?”

“Well, first, you’re going to have to wait for the next chocolate cake to hear about our team. But, let me tell you about Etsy and handmade! Etsy is the most remarkable online site for buying and selling all things handmade! You can find almost any handmade item in any color or medium or texture or design that you can imagine,” I said. “There is jewelry, pottery, polymer clay, paintings, paper art, fiber art, wood, metal, glass, candles, soaps,....things for babies, children, adults, homes, pets.........the list can just go on and on,” I continued. “Most importantly, it is all handmade!”

“Why the big emphasis on handmade,” asked Sally. “Wouldn’t it just be easier to go to your local discount store and find something cheap?”

“Aha!” I said. ’’You have just hit one of the nails on the head, as my Grandma used to say. I’m not interested in cheap. I’m interested in quality. And, that’s one of the attributes of handmade creations............good quality! And there are so many other reasons I love buying handmade.”

“Handmade items,” I went on, “reflect the talents, personalities, and souls of those who make them. When you buy handmade, you can just feel the love and passion that went into creating the item. You feel appreciation for the talent and skills that were used by the artisan or crafter. Your handmade item has life because every artist puts part of his or her heart and soul into every creation.”

“Moreover,” I continued, “when I buy something handmade, I know I am getting a unique, perhaps one of a kind item that fits my tastes, my personality, my eye for color or design, and also know that not everyone is going to have something just like it. This happens, you know, when I shop at the local discount store...........lots and lots of the same item in the same color available for lots and lots of people! Buying handmade makes me a trend setter, not a trend follower.”

Sally started to speak, but I kept right on talking. “Sally,” I said, “what do you think would happen to all of the artistic and crafting techniques and mediums that have been used to create for thousands of years if people didn’t buy handmade items from these creators? Well, I’ll tell you what would happen. This art would gradually disappear if no one sought after it and bought it, and future generations would never have the opportunity to see it, buy it, and appreciate it. So, we really need to support our local artisans and crafters and their multitudes of expression.”

“Local?” Sally asked. “You just told me you got that pottery from an artist in Colorado!”

“Sally, let me explain a little more about that. Local can mean right in our own community, or our state, or our country, or even the world. We are using local here to mean individual artists and craftspeople, or small businesses, no matter where they are located on the planet. That is what is great about Etsy! It is a worldwide community of local artists and craftspeople. No matter where they are, when we buy their handmade goods, we are supporting them in their local communities and boosting the economic, cultural and social vitality of the places where they live.”

“And, I almost forgot..........many artists are upcycling and recycling as they create their handmade goods. As opposed to mass production with its effects on our air, soil, and water, those who have imagined a way to use items that would otherwise add to the earth’s waste, are actually working to protect our environment.”

“Wow!” Sally exclaimed! “You’ve convinced me! Buying handmade can only be good............good for the artists and craftspeople, good for me because I can get exactly what I want, and good for the local and global community. Now, just tell me one more thing......how can I see all these handmade creations on Etsy?”

I sighed contentedly as we picked up our forks to finish our chocolate cake. “Well,” I said, “this is what you do.....”

18 comments:

Gunnels blog said...

Wonderful story!

Pam said...

Thank you. Glad you liked it!

Dayna said...

Excellent! Can I have a piece of the chocolate cake too?

On a Whimsey said...

Pam, what a fantastic post!!! So informative and I really felt that I was sitting next to you and Sally. Mind you, I was eyeing up the chocolate cake! Do you think they would notice if I slipped some onto my plate? They are in such deep converstation about very important matters!!!!

joonbeam said...

Pam, how much fun is this post? What a novel approach and I just love the way your style shines through ~ totally 'handmade' ~ soul and all. Thank you for a truly wonderful addition to Oscar - the BBEST Blog on the Planet! ox joonie

Chauncey said...

Pam, now you know any post that has cake in the title is going to get my love and attention! Great addition to our blog. You did a wonderful job.

Sixsisters said...

Wonderful blog Pam. Now I want some chocolate
cake !!!!j

blazingneedles said...

Pam - what a fantastic blog post!! Someone mention chocolate?

Liz said...

Wonderful post, Pam! Thank you. Now how about a piccy of that yummy chocolate cake too?!!!! My mouth is watering already.

Pam said...

You all are too sweet........and you'll only be sweeter when you have some of that chocolate cake!!

Alis said...

That is a great post. Thoroughly enjoyed reading it.
The cake was good too ;0)

Linda said...

Pam, this is really a fabulous post. Great job! I love it.
Nonnie

Brett Ward said...

Great post Pam! Move over Chauncey, that last piece of cake is for me!

The Filigree Garden said...

What a fun post to read. Of course, it is always great to end with chocolate. :-)

ZudaGay said...

Great post, Pam, very well done!!

Carol Dean said...

So well said! Thank you for this post! :D

Judy Nolan said...

Great post, Pam! I wonder how many of us have similar conversations with friends or people that we run into. I'll be a lot!

Jill said...

Thanks for posting this. I've had similar conversations at work--minus the cake.