Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Small Biz Shoppers

I have been doing a particular thing more and more and I am wondering if you have done the same. I do notice it is increasing in frequency though. It is not a deep dark secret or bad behavior! LOL What have I been doing, and secretly hope you’re doing the same? I have been buying more often at locally owned and run stores. There. That is it. Not profound but it’s a simple gesture.

I have noticed I have been doing it more now that I am making coasters. I say on my website, and it’s true, that I buy as many of my supplies as I can through locally owned and run stores. Where I buy my supplies offers friendly help from knowledgeable employees. They are very dependent on repeat business from local people with no props from a large corporation or a monstrous web presence like some companies. One place I shop has an awesome lady working there, Jill. Any time I have a question and Jill does not know the answer, she is quick to pick up the phone--while I am sitting right there--in an effort to get to the bottom of it, whatever “it” is at the moment. LOL I love it! I have never asked her to get it done “right now” but she is that kind of person. I appreciate her dedication. I wish all encounters with employees in any store were this way.

One day while I was eating lunch at our store I was surfing the news sites and came across an article on shopping for Christmas. It made reference in the title to shopping at small businesses so I decided to take a read. It was quite interesting. I am wondering what you think about the article? Will you take a few minutes to read the article and post your thoughts in the comment section or email them to me at

Here is a link to the article ....

Holiday Shoppers Plan Small Biz Shopping Spree

How does this relate to crafts and local events like craft shows, fall festivals, Christmas bazaars, holiday open houses, and so on? Many crafters reside and make their crafts right in your town, maybe in your neighborhood, and possibly even on your street. They depend on locals like yourself to buy their products. Of course there are crafters who sell online at Etsy and ebay, but I don’t know of any crafters who would turn away local buyers. It benefits everyone. The crafter gets his product out in his own town, increasing awareness of local craftsmen. The customer is promoting local products by buying a locally made item. The craftsman puts the money he earned right back in to his locally owned business, thus supporting his community.

I was talking yesterday to a craftsman, actually a lady who makes purses and wallets. She loves doing it and I believe she would love to go full time with it. The hang up is that people turn up their nose at paying a fair price for the item she makes. I have seen an example of her work and it’s just lovely. Some people have the attitude that they can just go get “_______” at the big box store down the street at one half the price or less. What they don’t understand is the craftsmanship that many crafts people put into their work. What you’re getting for that craftsman’s price oftentimes is quality work that you don’t find in department stores.

You are also buying their time, knowledge and skill . Some shoppers would say, “Oh, I can just make that.” What I have found is that many “just won’t make it”. They won’t take the time to assemble the necessary supplies, set aside the time to learn how to make it and then actually make it & do it repeatedly to build their skill level. Sometimes a craft looks easy till we actually try to do it ourselves. What we have forgotten is that it has taken time for a craftsman to develop the skills to get to where he or she is now.

We can't all be crafters and none of us crafters can do it all. It takes us all doing what we have a passion for. Somewhere along the way if we keep doing what we're passionate about, we will make our community a better place and offer items that can be used and loved for years to come.

So, will you read the article on shopping that I previously mentioned (link above) and send me your comments?

Toodles for now,

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