I've been hard at work (yes, still) getting ready for what I hope will be a busy holiday buying season. I had my home show last Friday (a smashing success -- thank you to everyone who showed up to support me!), and I have a booth at a craft show in a week and a half.
And because the holiday shopping season is upon us, whether we like it or not, buzz has started up again about "Buy Nothing Day". You can read all about it at the link, but the basic gist is -- don't buy anything on the day after Thanksgiving. This day was chosen because it's usually the biggest shopping day of the year, and people get up at the crack of dawn and trample each other trying to get to the bargain big screen TVs and mp3 players.
Now, while I am certainly against 1.) getting up at the crack of dawn, 2.) trampling people, and 3.) measuring your love for another human being by how much Christmas credit card debt you rack up in their name, I really can't get behind Buy Nothing Day. One day, and then you can get back to swiping those credit cards to your heart's content? Eh... It makes a great press release, but isn't there a more consistent idea out there?
Now here's something I can get behind: The Handmade Pledge. "I pledge to buy handmade this holiday season, and request that others do the same for me." You know you're going to give people gifts around Christmas. It happens. And it's fun! And by buying (or making!) handmade gifts, you can participate in all the good ideas behind Buy Nothing Day in a productive way.
Handmade gifts mean thought, care, and individualism. Buying handmade will support someone who works at what they love. Buying recycled handmade helps rescue stuff from the dump (literally or figuratively), and assures you a one-of-a-kind gift.
Here are some links to get you started:
another handmade shopping website
Craftster (ideas and tutorials for making your own gifts)
Martha Stewart (gift and decoration ideas)
Wists.com (make an online wish list with links to any web page)
(Am I just saying all this so you'll come to my show that happens to be the day after Thanksgiving and buy stuff? No. Do I care about this because I make handmade gifts for a living? Yes. Is that the only reason I care? No.)