Friday, November 2, 2012

This thing called "DIY"

You see it everywhere.  All over Pinterest, Etsy, blogs, websites, the general internet.... is this term "DIY" which stands for "Do It Yourself".  Everyone seems to want to do it yourself; whether it's making lip balm yourself, sewing a dress yourself, crocheting a baby sweater yourself, building a laundry rack yourself... everybody wants to make general everyday things on their own with their own resources.  But if you look around, most of these items are readily available at the nearest Walmart.

So why are people so fascinated with creating their own?  Back in the old days, Walmarts did not exist.  Grocery stores, malls, department stores... they just weren't around.  People made almost everything themselves, and each piece they made was unique to itself.  Their clothing, their food, their tools... each piece was an original that would never again be duplicated exactly.  Once in a while they would go to the blacksmith for a new cooking pot, the milliner's for a new hat, or the cobbler for some shoes.  But even these things were handmade by the blacksmith, milliner, or cobbler.  No two hats were identical, nor a pair of shoes, or a hand-forged iron pot. 

There is something special about something hand-crafted.  It was not made by robots on an assembly line.  There aren't thousands of its clone hanging in malls around the country.  There has been time, thought, creativity, and expert skill put into its making.  If you look at Etsy and other handmade craft venues, the sales are booming.  People more and more are wanting handmade things.  I have had people request custom orders from me for lots of things, whether it was a dress, a special scented soap, or a watercolor painting.  Why didn't they just go to Bon Ton and pick out a dress there, why didn't they visit Bath and Body works and choose a soap to their liking from those sweet-smelling shelves, and why didn't they poke around at Target for a painting for their home?  It's because they wanted something more.  They wanted something special, something where nobody else has one exactly like it. 

There are a countless number of crafts out there to choose from.  Learning a handcraft is learning a skill you will have for life.  Whether you do wood carvings, knit soft sweaters, rubber stamp beautiful stationery, sketch nature, sew handbags, bake cakes, bead jewelry, stamp leather... you will have your own little niche of creativity where no one else can duplicate your wares because they're unique to you. If you already have crafting skills, start up an Etsy shop!  It's super simple to do, and you only need one item to start your shop.  If you go about running your shop well, you will gain customers very quickly who will soon be anxiously awaiting a package from you to arrive in their mailbox, so they can admire and cherish your piece in their own homes.

Happy crafting!


Hana - Marmota said...

This is a good post that, I think, sums it up nicely, though I must add my own two cents: it's also the satisfaction of making and creating. Hands-on approach, so very much missing in this age of computers, and the satisfaction of making something out of, basically, nothing, something that has not been here before.

Lydia said...

Awesome post! I tagged you at my blog. :)

Pepper and Spice said...

Hello Miss Elizabeth,

I took me awhile to realize what DIY meant. Actually, it was a boy who told me!

I am constantly amazed at what people are willing to pay for items on Etsy. I am wondering what you mean by "If you go about running your shop well." Could you give a few pointers on how to run a shop?

Hoping to hear from you,

Miss Elizabeth said...

Hello Spice!

You wouldn't believe how long it took me to figure out what it meant. I was too shy to ask somebody, so I kept thinking about until one day it popped into my head! :D "Ooooohh!!"

That is a wonderful idea for a post actually. I think I will write up something about how to start/run an Etsy shop in my next post. Thank you for the question! I love hearing from readers.

God bless,

Pepper and Spice said...

I am so happy to see that you wrote an entire post to answer my question. I am eager to read it.

Thank you!

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