Here's my top reasons why I like to support 'Handmade'.
1. It feels more thoughtful.
Sure giving any gift is thoughtful, and appreciated! But to receive a gift that has been chosen and made especially for you is very special. Its more than likely one of a kind! This goes for gifts made by your own fair hand too! Or your child's. My sons Handmade salt dough ornaments have always gone down well with the grandparents! Rather than another store bought standard throw, a handmade, knitted blanket made in your favourite colour combinations would be much more thoughtful and special.
2. This time it's personal!
You can choose specific colours or patterns for scarves you know your loved one likes. An unusual flavour for fudge that your friend will find super yummy! A special scent for soaps or bath bombs that your mum will forever associate with you! By buying or making something handmade, you may get the opportunity to customise your purchase, making it unique and personal!
If you live abroad away from your family like I do, gifting them a personalised present from your place of residence can be a beautifully personal touch. These personalised henna decorated candles from Dubai were a huge hit with my mum!
3. Support the little guy!
Large stores have their place, but when placing a customised, handmade order you are more than likely giving your hard earned cash to an individual. They could be a stay at home mum creating personalised prints while their babies sleep, a grandma making jewellery in order to supplement her pension, or someone's brother constructing carpentry master pieces in his spare time. You are supporting individuals who are doing something they love! It may be their hobby, a skill they have honed over many years, it is their Passion!
4. The perfect Fit
"One size fits all" is generally not true. We all come in different shapes and sizes. If you know someone who struggles to find clothes that fit, why not arrange to have something custom made for them! With a little research you can find tailors and dressmakers in your local area who can make them something made to measure, with fittings that will ensure a perfect fit and make them feel like a V.I.P! This goes for home furnishings too, or even baked treats! How thoughtful would it be to get your friend some homemade, gluten or dairy free baked treats?
5. Tender love and care
Ok so your handmade product may be a little more expensive than the one you saw in the shop, but goodness me, so much hard work and effort has gone into it! Someone has spent a long time in their craft room, attic or workshop making sure every aspect of their work is as perfect as can be! You are supporting an artist, a creator, a human! A little piece of them goes into every single thing they make!
6. Saving the planet, dude!
I once heard a little anecdote about recycling that likened it to "turning up after an earthquake with a dustpan and brush". But equally "Every little helps" comes to mind also. Think about it.. when buying something from a large chain store, that has been made in a factory in one country, flown across the world to be packaged, then sold and delivered in countries across the world, how many fossil fuels, air miles, sweat shops, factory emissions and packaging have been involved?
7. Quality Craftsmanship
When having something handmade, that gift is made with love, care, attention to detail, and a lot of time and effort! No Mass produced factory jobbies here! That handmade short bread has been through countless taste tests, every stitch of that handmade cushion has been checked and rechecked. The person making you your gift has been practicing their skill for years, spending time and effort coming up with designs and trying them out. It is quite nerve wracking sending your work out into the world.. believe me!