Saturday, January 12, 2008

Handmade is Hot

For Christmans I received a beautiful Hat+Scarf+Gloves set, made by my Aunt.
To make your own stuff is becoming a huge trend, does not matter if what you are actually making is food, knitting stuff, cheap jewellery, baby clothes, paintings, sculpture or other products called design, stationery and other stuff. Thanks to the Etsy website you can show the results of your creativity and sell it. Etsy has booked record sales figure during the last December month, one millionth sale for be precise and is expected to grow. This new Art & Crafts Revolution seems to say “we want personalized products and not just commercial chain stuff”. Etsy motto – do it yourself – is from some called nostalgic, their items have a whole story and a person behind, but there is no techno-progressive idea’s in crafts. However more and more people like the idea to buy what it is not industrially produced, and the has recently launched a campaign, through their web you can take a pledge, declaring you will buy handmade, within few weeks 6.500 people signed the pledge. I am not yet sure if to love or to hate this new trend. I believe that more global we go more local we look for, I believe that we look for exclusivity and personalization in the products we buy, perhaps not yet all the society classes are ready for this, but certainly the well educated and the creative one are. Lot has to do with the size of your wallet too, if you are young and with not too much money you may thank God for be able to buy clothes 16 euros and be fashionable as well! I am a bit older and not a student, I am rejecting the H&M culture, but you must have an alternative, perhaps small labels and websites like Etsy can offer us a new way to do shopping. However the shopping experience will be completely different, no more walking down town, browsing in design shops, no more touching the product or exausting kews for try it on. Is the browsing “on line’ becoming our new way to do shopping? I am not sure, I want exclusivity but I still like to go down town. So my opinion is that perhaps the commercial chains will disappear, and their space will be taken from small independent creative people who actually love to make a quality product with respect for the environment and in limited series. Am I dreaming??? More about this topic can be read on the NYTimes and the book “Buying In: The Secret Dialogue between What We Buy and Who We Are” by Rob Walker will be published in June.

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