June 26, 2017

Why Handmade Matters


We live in a world where many things are mass produced. Not that there is anything necessarily wrong with that. It’s great that some things are manufactured in massive quantities in order to fill a worldwide demand for them.

But it’s also wonderful that more people everywhere are beginning to embrace things that are made by hand in small quantities. In case you hadn’t heard, here is why handmade matters.

Options Are Why Handmade Matters

1. Handmade is the New American Manufacturing

The past few decades have seen a consistent decline in traditional American manufacturing. It’s sad on one hand. On the other, it has paved the way for a new type of American manufacturing … one that embraces human potential and gives individuals a voice they might not otherwise have. To buy a handmade product is to affirm and give continues life to that human voice. When done throughout a community, multiple times over, an entire city can find new life. We see it happening all across the nation today and it’s making our nation a better place, one community at a time.

2. It’s Human Nature to Value the Creative Spirit

“Art and love are the same thing: It’s the process of seeing yourself in things that are not you.” – Chuck Klosterman



When you make something, you leave a part of yourself in it. When you are finished creating, you take pride in the work partly because you see yourself in it. When you buy something someone else made, you yourself are reflected in that purchase. Whether it’s the color, the texture, the shape, or just the mood you happen to be in, an item that has been crafted as an expression of the creative spirit person who made it is treasured and valued far beyond an item that was made for worldly mass consumption.

3. Handmade Items are Crafted in an Environment of Joy, Honor, and Respect

Have you ever studied the work space of a person who creates for a living? Their creations are almost always made in a space of joy, honor, and respect. Those same values somehow find their way into the very fiber of a handmade item. For example, consider that every inch of the yarn that forms a hand knit garment once flowed through the fingers of the Maker who knit the garment with intention and purpose. Who wouldn’t take extra special care of such an item.

4. A Handmade Item Cannot be Duplicated

No two handmade items are exactly alike. Variations in color, shading, texture, shape and grain are inherent in a handmade item. No two items are alike, so that every single one is one-of-a-kind. This means that every handmade item you purchase is also one-of-a-kind. What’s not to like about that?

5. Everything is More Beautiful When it’s Made with a Heart

You can serve your guests a frozen, mass produced pound cake or you can treat them to the one your mom made. The frozen one will do in a pinch, but only the one your mom made will touch the very heart of every one of your guests.

A consumer shift is happening. A movement if you will. More and more, people are willing to be educated about the value of a item that is made by hand.

People are starting to dream about things that don’t exist, but should, and then making them come to life.

This is why handmade matters. Surely everyone can understand that.

Want to learn more? Log onto your favorite search engine and search for “artisan local handmade in [your city, state].” Find something wonderful. It won’t take long, I promise. Go out and buy it. Then come back here and tell me all about it in the comments below.

Why do you think handmade matters?

Cabinetmaker Photo via Shutterstock

58 Comments ▼
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Donna Maria Coles Johnson


Donna Maria Coles Johnson Donna Maria is the founder and CEO of the Indie Business Network, a trade organization providing mentoring and coaching services, and affordable product liability insurance, to makers and creative entrepreneurs across North America. An award-winning small business advocate, Donna Maria has hosted the Indie Business Podcast since 2005. She blogs at Indie Business Blog.

58 Reactions

  1. Great article! I totally support handmade. It might cost more, but the investment in your brand is worth it. If you want to give the impression you’re high quality, choose high quality, local, and handmade items!

  2. Aira Bongco

    I agree about the creative part of it. I think that humans are here to create. And what better way to support them than to buy their products. It is nice that there are now websites like Etsy that supports handmade artists.

  3. Great article! I’ve had an Etsy shop for years and put a lot of heart in my handmade jewelry. And it’s true you really do give away a piece of yourself with each item.

  4. So very true. Today, we had 2 girls decorate jars and create a special scent to give as a gift for their Grandmas. They kept saying how it was a one of a kind, limited edition. They put so much love into the gift!

    • Great activity Roberta! Just think of the multiple positive experiences that result from that one activity. Two grandmas are blessed forever. Two children build confidence by making something valuable, and then giving it to someone they love. You have the great experience as an entrepreneur of passing along a useful creative craft while you also organically promote your local retail store as a contributor to your local community. And then thousands of people reading and sharing this post are uplifted and encouraged by the overall experience. Thank you for sharing.

  5. I’d much rather buy handmade than the same thing that everyone else has from the big box stores. I adore handmade soap, and I love giving handcrafted gifts.

  6. In my little destination shop, people come back time and time again for handmade items. They love the experience and want items that connect with people.

  7. I went handmade as a way to control my own future. I woke up one morning in 2005 and realized that I was one decision away from losing everything. I had one employer and the corporation owned my future.

    By 2009, I had the ground work in place (though only $7,000 in annual sales) so I gave my 6 weeks noticed and worked to ‘hire’ 80 bosses to work for. I figured making things for 80 different shops in at least 10 different states would put me in a position where weather and whim won’t impact our business.

    We have been blessed and continue to grow within the maker movement carrying on my grandfather’s tradition through to a fourth generation.

    Escape and make something for and of yourself 🙂
    Matt

  8. As a working blacksmith (Three Rivers Forge), I wish more people would buy hand-made goods! The two hardest parts of blacksmithing are coming up with a design, and finding customers that do more than talk about supporting the Trades.

    I understand that a $40 bottle opener is expensive when compared to what you can buy at the dollar store, but as the article notes, it’s absolutely unique in the world and wasn’t made by the thousands on a gigantic machine that runs day and night.

    I firmly believe that you better your life when you surround yourself with the very best you can afford. You might not have much, but what you do have is the best quality you can get. This rubs off on the person living in the home and they start to see quality over quantity as something more than a campy saying.

  9. What a load of BS! I am one of those makers of things and I will tell all y’all right now that while what is said up there has an iota of truth and therefore “rings true”, it isn’t so. if Handmade is the “New American Manufacturing” then we are all in deep “do do”. You need a huge and thriving middle class for handcrafters to survive and our middle class is dying. “Value the Creative spirit” is it? not from what I’ve seen historically. We LIKE to think we do, but history shows us that we consistently crush and ostracize those who are creative. Joy Honor and Respect? try more like haste, panic and economic terror, gotta get it done gotta get it sold gotta start the next one go go go or starve… why? because no one wants to pay, no one really values the craftsmanship. cannot be duplicated? If it can’t, again, we craftsmen are all going starve. people want sets, they want to see what they are getting before it’s made, they want to see consistency, all of the methods used to make things identical in factories today were pioneered by craftsmen to make sure they could repeatedly make the same chair/ box/ hat/ sweater etc etc. More beautiful when made with a heart? I make chairs, I do “love” to make chairs. but when people buy things from me they don’t look at /can’t see the “love”. And, incredibly, people look at my chairs, tell me that mine are excellent, then proceed to ask me to build them something else. I make more desks and dinning tables and beds than I do chairs. I truly do not feel the same about making a bed, but I do a really good job of it.

    • Anita Campbell

      Hmm, I buy handmade things all the time for their creativity and uniqueness. For nearly 20 years I had a handcrafted walkway to my front door, instead of a sidewalk. The landscaper built it by hand with special oriental craftsmanship. It cost double the price of a cement sidewalk and it was fairly impractical in a place that gets a lot of snow in winter. But you know what? I loved that walkway. There was nothing else like it in the neighborhood or even the surrounding region. Practicality is sometimes overrated in my view. And the fact that someone hand built that walkway made it even more special to me.

      At the same time, if I’m buying placemats for my outdoor dining set, I might go for mass produced because I just happen to need something utilitarian and don’t want to spend a lot in that instance. I pick what pleases me for the situation.

      A lot of people will do what you say and want to buy mass produced, but there are others out there who appreciate and will pay for “handmade” for something that pleases them and strikes a chord.

      – Anita

    • Karl…As an artist/craftsman, so much of what you wrote was going through my head when I read the article. Most people have no clue how much time and “heart” goes into a project. Unless they are a fellow artist, they can’t relate. I’ve had people tell me they would pay me $X for a project and I’ve had to tell them the supplies cost more than $X. I work in fibers and I’ve come to the conclusion that you don’t make any money selling crafts. You make money selling craft supplies! Much of my work IS a labor of love. If I added up my time, I would be paid what a worker in Sri Lanka makes.

      My son is a fine artist (drawing, painting) and we are using multiple outlets to sell his art. He still needs a day job. At least we can make prints and keep the originals. This is not an option with many crafts where the original is what you sell.

      • Hi there! I agree … most people have no idea. It’s our job to tell them and to ensure that they relate. It’s part of the sales process. If Jaguar didn’t tell me that their car was worth more than my Ford, I wouldn’t know it. Not saying that their car IS actually worth more, but people are paying more. The only reason they do that is because the manufacturer tells them the car is more valuable — when, at the end of the day, it cannot get me from Point A to Point B any faster or better than my Ford. I agree that you can make money selling craft supplies. But you can also make money selling handmade goods. Maybe not “crafts,” because people don’t generally value crafts. I’m not sure what you and your son sell, but I’m sure it’s lovely. Sell it to people who will pay what it’s worth, and leave everyone else alone.

    • I feel your frustration! I am constantly faced with people who want thinks at garage sale prices. The more functional the less valued. Oh! Dont’t get me started on gallery commissions.

      • I’m sorry you continuously encounter people who do not value your work. You should not sell your valuable handmade products at garage sale prices, even if people ask you to do so. Perhaps you can target a more well-to-do customer or gallery with more high end customers? Usually, when people don’t want t pay, it means they are not the right people for you. In other words, our job as creative entrepreneurs is to find our target market … we cannot expect them to come to us. Wishing you success, ad thank you for your feedback and for sharing your experience.

    • The middle class as it has been defined by people on television may be dying, but the people who make and sell handmade products are mostly middle class and they are not dying. We can agree, I think, that there are people who criticize others and who do not appreciate the creative spirit. We all see them all the time. But on the flip side, there are also people who appreciate creativity, and they will pay for it. I also agree that some people want sets, but not everyone wants uniformity around them all the time. If you sell sets, find the people who want to buy sets. If you do not sell sets, it’s your job to find people who don’t want sets and then offer your wares to them. I’m sure your work is gorgeous and I hope you continue to do it, and that you find the audience who will pay for it.

      • The so called middle class who you say is making and selling are perhaps trying to supplement their incomes. I wonder if they have the extra income to spend on quality handmade items from others? In addition, I know that many folks who make and sell on sites such as Etsy are more hobbyist than business professional. They often underprice their items for a variety of reasons- they don’t know how to price their items, they are satisfied in getting the cost of materials out of it so they can buy more materials (ie, they don’t intend to actually make a living doing it), they offer a low price because they don’t really need the money and it just feels good to sell something ( I call this the Sally Fields effect- “You like me right now, you like me!”1985 Oscars acceptance speech.), to name a few reasons. This makes it harder for others in the marketplace to sell at a profitable price.
        I’m not trying to be negative here- just realistic from my perspective of crafting a life from making and selling handmade for over 40 years, professionally.
        If we can’t be realistic and honest about what it takes to do this as a life’s work then how are young people today going to be able to continue to have this choice and make it work? Just wondering. (we need more wondering in this world)

    • Yes, Karl. You get it. The assertion that “Handmade is the new American Manufacturing” rings hollow to me as well. The middle class as defined by people on television? I’m not sure I understand what that means but as the gap has become wider in the last 20 years the middle class has shrunk enormously. Most working people (previously defined as the middle class) do not have the money to spend much if any on quality handmade. If they do, it is a special treat. Folks in higher income brackets and well off retirees seem to be the ones able to afford such luxuries. Furthermore, many small hand makers/craftspeople who made a living in the 80’s and 90’s had to close up shop or shrink down to a one (and maybe 2) person operation due to imports, rising costs, taxes, and so forth. I knew many such folk who had fairly large (20-100 person) operations in handcrafted business (clay, textile, soft goods, wood, glass etc.) who were selling to shops back then. When importers copied their goods and took it overseas to have made at fractions of the cost in low wage countries, stores here (and their customers!) did not bat an eye. They were happy to buy at cheap prices. Most did not even notice or care the lack of quality that ensued. Many of these designers and makers were left to either move their production overseas or to sell the rights to their designs. It was a short term gain for most. Those that persisted are few and mostly individual makers now.
      I could go on. So many points in this article I disagree with. But I will say that I can’t see much really changing (as far as generating a real and long lasting understanding-not a trend) when we are not teaching this appreciation in a real and meaningful way in public schools. The museums decry a downturn in visitors yet we keep reducing the amount of art that is taught in meaningful ways.
      And to Anita who defended the article by way of her handcrafted walkway- I noticed you are the Founder, CEO and Publisher of Small Business Trends which published this article. Just wondering and noticing.

  10. I love giving my own handmade gifts to family and friends. I have a shop where I sell yarn and other things on Etsy, but there is no way I can make a living at it. I just do it for fun. One of the places I buy yarn is a company that sells handmade yarn from a cooperative in India and Nepal that employs women. The women make the products and in turn the coop pays them. In this way, those women are able to help their families get medical attention and education. I have always thought that if American companies had coops like this hand made artists might be able to make a living.

    Karl, you are right about the middle class. Our government is too concerned about which bathroom people use and about socializing America to give the backbone of our nation the attention they need. They make taxes so high that American businesses outsource to other countries where the standard of living is very low. If you want to be self-employed you have to be a whiz at accounting otherwise you’ll screw up and the IRS will get you. Plus, all of the fees and taxes make it impossible to make a profit. In order for handmade to work this country is going to have to fix its tax structure and make it feasible for someone to own a small business. You’re going to have make it profitable to be a middle class person again so that the middle class can buy businesses and employ people. That’s the only way it’s going to work.

  11. Yes, this is all true. And you’ve mentioned some great points – handmade does not mean that nothing can be massed produced. But it is a lifestyle choice. I produce handmade and I buy handmade. I love it! I may spend a bit more, but I have so much more satisfaction and happiness from the product.
    Yes, it is very hard to get consumers to understand the price of handmade. But by offering classes and information you can educate them to understand that handmade is more than materials plus time. It is also years of experience that lead to expertise and also to quality that is produced faster than if they were to do it themselves.

  12. I tell people that all the time but they want the stamp cut exact item that is duplicated exactly the same as the machine does every time. They don’t want a single tiny flaw and when they buy two of the same they want them perfectly the same. They don’t care that it is made by hand. They don’t care that most of what you make is custom one of a kind items for that customer and they have something unique because there may 10,000 holsters per city but there isn’t a single one that is like the one they could have if bought from a craftsmen.

    • How can we reeducate people to appreciate our handmade items? I do pottery and stained glass but people will not pay what is needed for them. They want to pay less than the glass costs at wholesale and about a penny an hour for the hard work. My handmade pottery is also good as I am somewhat of a perfectionist and don’t put out something I don’t Love. There is no way I can duplicate hand thrown plates close but not exactly like each other. I watch a show on economics and they said the way to keep people under control is to sell them a lot of cheap stuff that they throw away and go shopping again to satisfy themselves. It is call control the people so the don’t protest.

  13. I have always supported creative people with my purchases. I enjoy creating baskets and rugs with my hands and producing a beautiful, useable product with my own hands! The more I weave, the more I want to weave. I like for my products to be one of a kind but I can make two of something if the customer needs two. With rugs, that is a skill in itself, to be able to match the patterns and make sure you allow enough fabric for two.

  14. I do support handmade because I’m one of the hand-maker. I find my personal value and inner peace in it and realize myself can be so creative to produce something that I never thought I could do it. I discover more about myself in handmade, I wish I could contribute in its’ industry or more than that.

  15. The only difference between a successful crafts person and an unsuccessful one is…..how good of a business person they are!

    • Roger,

      I agree completely! When they are not profitable, so many artisans blame consumers’ lack of appreciation for their products when the truth is that they have a nice product, but they do not know how to sell and market it. I see this a lot and it’s one of the things I try to address through my work at the Indie Business Network. Thanks for your comment!

      • Nobody can do Everything. There are great Craftsmen out there that desperately need a great Salesman to step up to the plate for them. We all have our own talents, and everybody can play a role in this.

      • Hi ma’am
        we are a women based enterprise in Portland Oregon started a year back , we have a handcrafted online silver Jewelry website mirrorwhite.com and also participate in fairs and corporate stalls when possible would love to know how to take it forward and increase traction on the website

  16. I hand-craft my Native style wooden flutes, and operate as so many crafters do: working from the heart, offering a product that is far undervalued, but smiling at the end of the day after we’ve seen our ‘kids’ taken home by someone else that sees and feels the magic of our Soul’s work. All while living hand to mouth. Talk is cheap, and some can drone and moan about this that and the other…but if you are at peace with how the Universe works, putting out there your top-drawer love, energy, and talent, you will feel successful no matter the economic bottom line. Doing your best is a non-monetary reward that money can’t buy, but we know what goes around comes around. The key is just like “The Four Agreements” by Ruiz….drop your expectations of others and results, and the Universe will pour itself in. Easier said than done when a tree falls on your car, the insurance company gives you a bad deal, and you fend off creditors…we artisans of the limited and unique have to let “the World” be as it is and not curse the darkness. Keep your eye on the prize, which is nothing more than smiling inside with something wonderful we have made. The Joy is in the Journey, as they say.

  17. I am a handmade creator of repurposed cashmere sweaters! I recycle every bit of the cashmere sweater and make them into cashmere scarves that are crocheted together with LOVE! I also make cashmere headbands and flower pins with vintage buttons . It is my craft, my legacy, my therapy and i love it! Each one is unique and one of a kind! Made with love for someone across the world that i hope will cherish it forever! I am proud to be a part of this Handmade Nation!

  18. I create handmade jewelry. I am transported to a happy place and all my worries, problems, fears and emotions are gone while I am working! To have someone compliment or buy my goods is reinforcement that I create for a reason. Then to get to hear that it is a person’s go to piece once purchased is amazing! I love to create handmade jewelry for myself and others!! Try to find your creative niche it feels really special!!!

  19. I have a shop in Shepherdstown, WV (USA) and we sell LOCAL products, all hand made/crafted. I feel truly blessed to live in a community where this is possible. We sell some Fair Trade products, but the vast majority are all made less than 50 miles from my shop, many are less than 20 miles and a good number of my crafter/artists are right here in Shepherdstown. I love supporting my community this way <3
    Check us out at https://www.facebook.com/TheSourceWV/

  20. Being a full time maker of furniture has been a struggle but I cannot see myself doing anything else.

    John
    J.C. Sterling fine furniture

  21. I make handmade fabric and leather bags.. it is a long process, the hours put in each creation is endless and tiring. Each person behind each part is doing a tremendous job, I see the twinkle in their eyes when I see the finished product. Then a machine made synthetic product comes and snatches away that twinkle, that exuberance. I urge each of you encourage handmade products, it puts food on the table of many, sends a few to school, smiles on the faces of all.

  22. I totally agree their is no greater joy than going handcrafted as an owner of mirrorwhite.com a handcrafted silver jwellary website , I totally endorse the whole process . It’s something that speaks to me and touches my heart .

  23. I could really connect with the well-written article. Though Handmade may be new to the American System but in India it has been an ages old tradition. But of late that has seen a neglect. We are looking to take care of the artisans and craftsmen who are preserving the tradition and culture of India. It is eminent today to uplift the socio-economic condition of the artisans who are around 12-15 million in number.
    Of late, handmade products which are unique are being beaten by the other run-out-of-mill products in the consumer space.
    We at Craft Emporio, are striving really hard to enable the artisans to ensure a good education and living conditions for them.
    Let’s bring a smile on all those faces who put in real time in crafting Handmade products.

    [Slightly Edited by Editor]

  24. What an article!! nailed it completely. These are our true spirits. Handmade is indeed special. Have recently started working in this field and have already adopted quite few handmade items for my daily use. Thanks to you and several others who have exposed me to such ideas and facts. We are trying to promote reverse migration by selling handmade products from rural India online.

  25. Hello everyone.I am a self taught artist and this article resonates and explains so much about my inner self. I cling to my art….but am beginning to let go of a few of my creations. Each with a story or emotion I hope will be cherished. I hoard my art and have 180 or so in my closets….I sell prints and POD items, but hate taking the leap of selling them off….some are not even very good, but I digress… I have been commissioned, won a 1st place national graphic art competition, friends and family have many…….I just wished people would realize the worth of one of a kind art, yet some folks have paid more for a framed print than I ask for an original!!!!

  26. Very inspiring article! Great reading all of the highs and lows of the handmade culture. It is tough to find your niche to begin with and even more to stay in the game. I own a handbag business. One of a kind and refer to our work as Art, style and function. We surround ourselves with clients that love love what we do! We are humbled each time they reward us without blinking an eye! For the past 3 years we have made by hand each bag and looking to expand our website that we can barely keep updated due to selling out before we can upload new bags. In the beginning we only wanted to sell online but what limited thinking! I want to encourage other handmade Artisans to find other courageous comrades to keep you motivated!
    Betty
    Poshtotes.com

  27. Jerry Cartwright

    To those of us that do make things by hand, this is old news but it’s good to see everyone else starting to catch on. Besides being able to see yourself in something that is not you, making something by hand also gives you a huge sense of pride and at the same time, at times, causes you to beat yourself up. I make hand carved signs as a hobby and each and every one that I make, people tell me how awesome they look. Some even accuse me of using some sort of machine to make them with, CNC I suppose. But to the craftsman that made it, they can see EVERY flaw in that piece, no matter how small. All you can do is say “Thank you” to the one complimenting and promise yourself that you’ll do better the next time. Thanks for such a good article.

  28. Nice article. I especially resonate with many of the comments above.

    I build handmade audio speakers (arsharmonia.com) and educating potential customers about the benefits of handmade is a big part of my process. It can be pretty discouraging in the beginning but it’s another skill to master that pays off in the end. Handmade is worth your effort and the price your customers pay!

  29. As a writer, every word woven is my joy to share. Journey of Dreams took a decade to bring to the marketplace. My other children’s books are still in print after years at a small publisher. I’ll never be able to pay the bills with what I write, but I keep writing, and teach writing to challenged groups, sharing the power of creating on the page. Writing/creating has an intrinsic value that enriches your life!

  30. Vickie Goodman

    My friends and family are precious one-of-a-kind people–genuine, loving, insightful, kind. They deserve nothing less than handmade gifts. Reason enough. 🙂 Great read! Thank you!

  31. Some of my *most* treasured items are the ones my children have made for me. Not because they are my children, but because of the thought, care, creativity, and sheer *love* that went into them.
    Be it the hand print tree ornament made in kindergarten or the collapsible camping table made in grade 11 shop class, each gift was well thought out to be useful or to suit MY likes and there isn’t enough of anything in the world that can commercially replace THAT.

  32. We have been making mouthblown, handmade art glass for thirty plus years. It is how we make our living….not a hobby. We love demonstrating and explaining the process. It’s not always easy, but we appreciate the support given us by our loyal customers.

  33. I think what you’re talking about here regarding handmade, is art. I typically don’t run across handmade refrigerators cars, crock pots, beds, plumbing fixtures or jeans. And they don’t typically come across manufactured or assembly line art. So I’m not sure what the point of the article is

    • I appreciate handmade items and support the artisans that make them. We also take the time to get to know each other and to appreciate the value in each piece. All of the doors in our home are handmade- each unique. No they don’t match. They compliment each other and are artwork in their own right. Same with the hardware- hand forged iron and each uniquely handcrafted and not mass produced. The doors cost more than a Home Depot door from Weyerhouser, but the hardware was about the same as a brand name. Same with our furniture, art, Mouldings, sinks, floors, etc. It takes longer to source, but the end result is unique and spectacular. Plus I get to know the craftsman and share their craft. The satisfaction is not matched, and the respect for the items is unequalled because they are irreplaceable. The items are also part of my legacy too.

  34. I love this article! I’m the owner of angelsofheart.com. I’ve been creating handmade art for over 20 years. As the years go by, I’ve noticed the appreciation of “handcrafted” diminish and it is time to make a come back! Thank you for posting this, it made my day.
    Kelley

  35. Hi; prolly going to blocked. but this article is SOOO wrong! touchy feely mumbo jumbo.. I am an American Craftsman. I make things out of wood (furniture mostly), Now I must admit that I love to make things, the more I make the happier I am. NO ONE appreciates handcrafted things. the number of times I hear that they can get it at Walmart. urgh. most other people go OOOh I love that, and go buy the mass produced toy imported from China at the next stall. Then you find they they bought their furniture at Ikea. The new manufacturing? no we craftsmen cannot keep up, value creative spirit, Not that I’ve noticed, made in an environment of joy honor and respect.. what does that even mean? the handmade object cannot be duplicated, a patently false assertion, if it were true then all of my chair legs would be different. made with heart makes it more beautiful.. really? you can tell that the handmade stuff coming in from 3rd world countries wasn’t made by a starving craftsman who hates what he does? because a lot of the stuff being sold as handcraft in places like (omitted to avoid a lawsuit) are made by hand in sweatshops overseas. sure there is an “American Artist’s” name on it but the volume that those stores demand is appalling and getting handmade copies from overseas is the only way to meet demand. Sorry everybody. but the American Craftsman is an Anachronism. if you have actually filled your life with items made by person’s that you have met, Kudo’s to you. but most people can’t even afford a handmade spoon.
    Karl F Newman
    Master Cabinetmaker
    Chairmaker
    Beekeeper

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