The magic of handmade

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

There's something really special about receiving a handmade gift. Here's Isla jumping on the trampoline with her best friend "Miffy Bunny" - a handmade crochet bunny she received while on holiday from someone very special (thank you Althea!). I love this bunny because I know how much love and effort and time goes into something like this, and I love that Isla loves this bunny more than anything else. It's her special friend. As a maker, it fills my heart with happiness and pride that she loves Miffy Bunny so much and that she totally understands that someone MADE it especially for her.

I think a lot of people are enjoying this kind of handmade happiness. Not just makers, but people who appreciate the love and effort that goes into these makes. Christmas time is our busiest time at markets with Bean & Boy, our handmade soap business. Every weekend we find ourselves standing shoulder to shoulder with other makers from around the country as we tell people about handmade soap, helping them choose a bar of soap for a specific "difficult to buy for" relative, and explaining the soapmaking process over and over again. I think it's amazing that everyone is interested in hearing about the making process, and that we get to meet so many other enthusiastic crafters who make everything from "raw pizza" to giant hair bows. We've seen ceramic santas, handmade jams and chutneys, cake decorations and (a first for me) neon budgie tree angels. The markets this year are bigger and better than they were last year, and everyone is opting to buy handmade instead of commercially produced. It is a magical time and I'm really excited to be involved. It's even more exciting when someone buys from you and truly appreciates the amount of work that went into something.

I've always loved making things, all sorts of things, so it's wonderful that there's a huge interest developing in things that are made from scratch. From scratch, what a strange phrase. Apparently it has something to do with competitive sports and it denotes the starting point of a race or event. Anyway, the only kind of competitive sporting event around here is how fast you can knit a pair of socks. I'm losing, by the way. One pair a year does not seem like it is record breaking!

So, a big thank you to everyone who has supported us at markets and online. An even bigger thank you to everyone who supports the kind of crazy that comes along with made-by-handers (the accumulation of materials just-in-case-I-get-a-chance-to-make-that-thing-I-once-dreamt-up, the insistence on taking crochet in the car whenever I become a passenger, the persistent glitter that I can't seem to get out of the carpet, all those late nights making soap). And of course, the biggest thank you of all for everyone who has decided to go handmade this year instead of shop-bought. You're all magic.

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