25 October 2011

Allow me to step on my soap box ...

Hello all...Happy Tuesday!
Okay...I'm gonna get on my soap box...about what you ask? Well, about how we choose to spend our money particularly as the holiday season approaches.

As many of you know I own an art gallery/ gift shop, so the idea of buying handmade, local or from a small independent retailer is close to my heart as it affects me greatly.
Handmade necklace out of recalimed wood, by Adea Chung of Billy Would
Buying handmade can have such an impact on so many people on so many levels. Consider how you feel when you get something that has been made for you, and only you, it is a feeling that cannot be compared. Consider how it feels to receive a one-of-a-kind gift that no one else in the world will own except you, and consider how much care and consideration went into choosing that gift specifically for you, because you are special. It's a pretty great feeling right? Now imagine buying handmade for the people in your life, and imagine passing along such wonderful feelings with each gift you give...imagine what a happy holiday season it would be.
Handmade Serving Bowl by Antje Gagne

Consider how it affects everyone when you buy local. Think of your local merchants and remember that they are also your neighbours. If everyone spent just $50 at a local/independent retailers each month the impact would be huge. The 3/50 project is an online movement that began in 2009 as way to encourage and empower people to heal the economy through mindful spending. The statistics (based on U.S. numbers) are staggering; "If just half the employed U.S. population spent $50 each month at independently owned stores, their purchases would generate $42,629,700,000 in revenue". Imagine how that would affect your community, and your neighbours.

Handmade Piggy Bank by Thomas Suh
With the rise of the Occupy Wall Street movement which calls attention to the disparity of income between the upper and middle class perhaps it is time to make some simple shifts in our shopping habits. Simple changes that while individually are a drop in the pond, when we all focus our attention on them, become waves. Think about buying quality over quantity, about buying ethically over conveniently.

I have adopted a slogan of sorts as the holiday season approaches (only 9 Saturdays until Christmas) 'Buy local or buy handmade, either way you will positively affect someone's bottom line, but it won't be Wall Street's.'

Buying local or handmade is a gift that keeps on giving, to you, to your community, to your recipient.

Who is your favourite local merchant, or handmade artisan?

Thanks for sticking around, I'll step off the box now :c) Have a great day!

3 comments:

  1. Hi Jodi!

    GREAT POST!

    In a past chapter of my life I owned a boutique being 75% (or more) of the goods were handmade, artwork and upcycled wares. This post subject is still near and dear to me! I found this posting early this year (http://www.scoutiegirl.com/2010/06/creative-tithing-mindful-spending.html) it was food for thought and I have been creative tithing since and it feels wonderful!

    Tracie

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  2. such a great reminder! why do we feel the need to go to toys r us? well, laziness I guess. keep getting the word out as many people look over this option.

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  3. Great post! I wish everyone would think this way. And it's the individually handmade things that are so special to receive - it really is a win win for everyone :)

    Ps: thanks for your sweet comment on my painting! I may just pick up my brush and do a little more of it xo

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