i'm constantly being amazed at the talent on etsy, it's really wonderful actually. since shopping on it these last few months i've noticed a real lack of interest in myself of wanting to shop in the real world. i've this feeling when looking in stores that i could get a much nicer and more unique item on etsy.
if you asked me a year ago what i like to do for enjoyment i would have told you "shopping". just walking into stores, looking at things, trying clothes on, touching materials, is really fun. but lately i just seem so tired of it all. the need to purchase something so that a shopping excursion is deemed successful has just really disappeared. most times when i do go shopping i don't bring anything home. it's all rather odd.
but then i look at the things i've acquired from some really talented ladies on the web, and i feel good. these pieces make me happy when i look at them. it's incredible to know who made what, put a person to each piece. there are stories behind them, blogs you can visit, websites that let you know more about the artist; what drives them. i think this connection is what is missing from stores now. call it the mass production affect, but all these things that they stock just seem dead, so soulless in their anonymity.
i am a follower of the "handmade" movement; for reasons such as craftsmanship, preservation of historic skills, the creative eye, a fair wage, uniqueness. but i've come to realize that it's more than that, it's the ability to reach out and share something wonderful with someone else. i know that when i create, so much of myself is put into it. call it a piece of your spirit, your energy, or your fingerprint, but this whatever-it-is makes what you create alive. so the happiness is more than the acquisition of material things, it's the happiness derived from surrounding oneself with things that contain life.
i hope the handmade movement is here to stay; because if we lose this ability as humans, to create, to empathize with our surroundings, i don't think there's much brightness in our future.