“Handmade is all about thinking,” Vesta explained to Velma, her new friend at the rooming house. “Handmade allows, encourages, demands that people think. Lights. Cars. Telephones. Radios. Televisions. Computers. Society-changing developments all start off handmade. Handmade is new, fresh, thought-provoking. Individuality cannot be expressed through mass produced objects. It is a structural impossibility. The Ada coat’s personal expression cannot happen by shopping at the new department store in the city.
With handmade, producers get the power of production and creative control. Consumers are offered not just the illusion of choices (Smucker’s or Welch’s grape jelly), but real choices (homemade mango jam).
Handmade objects themselves come from practices of recycle upcycle reuse – further spurning commodity culture. They come from history, tradition, and human hands.
Societies benefit with engaged producers, somewhat leveled playing fields, less dominance more engagement.
My purchases feed artists and families, not corporations.
My clothing is not racy or terribly unusual. Shopping at the department store downtown I would have five choices. Working with a seamstress or artist on a handmade wardrobe, I have a world of choices. Handmade is freedom.”
Velma’s chin was down, eyes wide, brows raised, enthralled.