So yesterday at the market, something happened that usually doesn’t. One of the market-goers who was looking at my items told me how pretty my wristlets were, but said she wouldn’t buy one because she could get something like them for less at Walmart. I didn’t know what to say, so I wished her good luck. Her lovely friend gave her a very hard time for invoking the “W”-word and for suggesting that she could find something like my wristlets there.
I certainly hope that I’m not making Walmart-esque items. I don’t copy Walmart, and I think the quality of my work exceeds what you’ll find there. My seams aren’t going to start unraveling and things aren’t going to fall apart after a few uses. My items aren’t mass produced overseas by underpaid workers and they aren’t exposed to suspicious chemicals. They are all made be me, one by one, each one unique and made with an ingredient you will never find at Walmart: love. I care about what I make and I care that it’s something you’ll love owning. When you buy something from me, you are supporting small business, handmade, local craftsmanship. Yes, my items tend to cost a bit more than ones you’ll find at Walmart, but I really believe you are getting more than just a bag (or a wallet, or magnets…) for the price. You are getting something no one else has, no one has suffered to make, something that will last, and you’re supporting the local economy. All sorts of good stuff. So yeah, I don’t think I’m in league with Walmart. And I don’t want to be.
(The was recently a similar post a The Small Object, and I really like what she has to say about the whole handmade vs. not-handmade thing, too. Check it out.)